All posts by arg913972

Even Godly People Have Flaws

Even godly people have flaws and weakness. We see the Bible is full of stories where great people of God had their weaknesses.

Lets just look at a few examples of great leaders in Scripture who did right but had moments of weakness and personal shortcomings

King David, David had been called by the Lord a man after God’s own heart but failed to guard his eyes and it led him to adultery (see 2 Samuel chapter 11)

We see Jehoshaphat king of Judah was spoken of very highly in Scripture, but he made the mistake of getting mixed up with the wrong people a number of times. (2 Chronicles 19:1-3) (2 Chronicles 20:35-37)

King Jotham later ruled and “walked steadfastly before the Lord his God”
Yet he failed as king in removing the high-places in the land (2 Kings 15:35)

Hezekiah later rules as the grandson of Jotham. We see Hezekiah trusted God like no one else, “Hezekiah trusted in the Lord, the God of Israel. There was no one like him among all the kings of Judah, either before him or after him.
2 Kings 18:5 –

Yet Hezekiah almost died as the result of letting his heart grow proud, (2 Chronicles 32:24-26)

Later the great grandson of Hezekiah, Josiah ruled over Judah and he did so many wonderful reforms to cleanse the land of idol worship, but fails in a moment by picking a fight with the king of Egypt who is marching that way to face the King of Babylon in battle. Josiah picked a fight he should have stayed out of. (2 Chronicles 35:20-24)

We see that even those who love the Lord and faithfully serve him are not immune to mistakes or weaknesses. We all have them. So we should learn from examples of those we see who lived before us and learn from their mistakes. We should daily meditate on the truths in God’s Word and pray as Jesus taught us to. We should work to strengthen our weaknesses while not getting discouraged that we have them.

As we let God’s Word continue to correct us, and as we respond humbly and submit to what He is showing us, we will continue to grow into what we are called to be!

Social Distancing From Negativity

Some of the best social distancing you will do is from turning off the news and distancing from the negativity. Turn of the TV, enjoy the great outdoors and open your Bible. Social distance from the nonsense you see and fill your day with positive things instead. Many times bad attitudes spread faster then viruses. People open their mouths and cough out gossip and trash talk. Distance yourself from them.

Watching What We Consume In Our Minds

Many people read the ingredient labels on food before they put it in their bodies by eating it. Yet too many people consume just whatever comes through their visual senses and ears. We ought to be just as careful what we listen to and watch as we do what we eat. We can suffer negative physical effects by eating too much junk food. Yet we can suffer ill emotional affects by not guarding our eyes or ears from what we see and listen to.

For example: you going to just eat something a random stranger offers you? Why then should we listen to gossip of someone we hardly know about another person.

We would be wise if we did not automatically believe everything we hear.

The simple believe anything, but the prudent give thought to their steps.
Proverbs 14:15 –

Look closely: “The simple believe anything”

Believe is the verb, anything is the noun

“But the prudent give thought to their steps”

See how the prudent person is examining themselves more then focusing on others. They are more busy examining their own life that they do not have as much time to believe everything they are told about this person, or that thing or exct.

Yet the simple just “believe anything” and are not discerning in what they listen to. So it is true with us, if we are wise and prudent we will give more careful thought to working on ourselves that we won’t have nearly as much time to fault find or believe everything we hear about others.

The Need For True Soldiers

But I think it is necessary to send back to you Epaphroditus, my brother, co-worker and fellow soldier, who is also your messenger, whom you sent to take care of my needs. [Philippians 2:25]

When we think of the term “soldier” do we think of someone who is soft, danty, delicate and timid. Do we think of someone who hides in time of battle afraid they may get shot? No. In fact if you become a soldier in the US army, the marines or any military branch. They have a high set of standards for you. They pick quality fighters not weak folks who are timid and scared. They pick people who are willing to get shot, and not cowardly folks.

Likewise being a “soldier” in Christ is not for pansies. It is not for the softies. As Christ followers we must be strong and not let the fear of people or their insults or shrink back and cower in some corner because someone does not “like us”

Jesus warned we would face persecution. American Christianity has kind of grown soft. We are not supposed to be soft- but soldiers.

How do we become more fit? Well, in the army, as far as I know, they have to go through daily physical training and do pushups regularly. This turns a soft soldier into a strong soldier. Likewise, in this time, we too must train ourselves rigorously. We should make a daily exercise of reading God’s Word and prayer.

Have nothing to do with godless myths and old wives’ tales; rather, train yourself to be godly. For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come. 1 Timothy 4:7-8 –

We see here Paul uses the word train yourselves. To do what, “be godly” and Jesus said that we must “If anyone would come after me they must deny themselves, take up their cross daily and follow me”

Self denial? Yes we are called to through God’s enabling Spirit deny the pulls of our sinful nature. We must deny ourselves by letting people or the culture around us shape us to fit their mold, just to like us. Self denial included being willing to stand true to our convictions and what we hold true, even if we lose friends, get laughed at or even sorely persecuted.

We have I feel to some degree as Western Christians gotten to comfortable with the lack of persecution we have faced. Yet in this time more then prior times, we need to be firm and resolute to what the Bible says is true. We should not let fear of the people of the world firing shots at us for our commitment. We should not let the world and rapidly decomposing culture around us cause us to compromise. We should speak truth, gently, with respect, but uncompromisingly as well- not letting fear of insults or ridicule deter us.

In this time we see this playing out. We see so often if you voice a contrary belief on this or that, you become a “bigot” or “a hater”

Yet if you spoke the truth in kindness it does not matter what they say or what they think of you really, and if they say that, and ones conscience is clean- then that makes such people liars. For it says “You shall not bear false testimony against your neighbor” so if you speak in love and kindness and people slander you because they do not like the truth.

Its one thing to speak what is true in harshness or a condescending tone- that we should not do, yet if we keep clear conscience and season our words with gentleness and kindness- while saying what is true then we are considered blessed

But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander. For it is better, if it is God’s will, to suffer for doing good than for doing evil.
1 Peter 3:15-17 –

Soldiers are tough. So that means that abuse we get verbally from the world- we should be strong and respond meekly. Unflinching and stick to our resolve to continue to follow Christ

Sermon: When God Abandons A Nation To It’s Sinful Devices

“Israel is a scattered flock that lions have chased away. The first to devour them was the king of Assyria; the last to crush their bones was Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon.” Jeremiah 50:17 –

We see here for the stubborn sin filled nation, Assyria was “the first to devour them” and “the last to crush their bones was Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon.”

We see how poetically worded these disasters God allowed were, and what was the problem with these people?

Lord, do not your eyes look for truth? You struck them, but they felt no pain; you crushed them, but they refused correction. They made their faces harder than stone and refused to repent.
Jeremiah 5:3 –

They kept resisting the message of the Lord and “refused to repent”

We see trouble in our times also, in our nation the first calamity that has taken this world by surprise was a virus. Yet there are other severe things crushing our nation right now, we see mass riots all across the USA and destruction, chaos, animosity between people and alot of blaming going on.

Yet hopefully it won’t be said of us what God said of His nation Israel,

Surely wickedness burns like a fire; it consumes briers and thorns, it sets the forest thickets ablaze, so that it rolls upward in a column of smoke. By the wrath of the Lord Almighty the land will be scorched and the people will be fuel for the fire; they will not spare one another. On the right they will devour, but still be hungry; on the left they will eat, but not be satisfied. Each will feed on the flesh of their own offspring: Manasseh will feed on Ephraim, and Ephraim on Manasseh; together they will turn against Judah. Yet for all this, his anger is not turned away, his hand is still upraised.
Isaiah 9:18-21 –

What does God do with this nation that once was his “chosen people”- do to their rejecting him and turning to other gods, God gave them over to the stubbornness of their own sinful hearts.

When a nation for a large part rejects the knowledge of God and turns it’s back on Him, we can expect this to happen

“But my people would not listen to me; Israel would not submit to me. So I gave them over to their stubborn hearts to follow their own devices.
Psalm 81:11-12 –

We could see it was not working out for them that well. We see “Manasseh will feed on Ephraim, and Ephraim on Manasseh; together they will turn against Judah. Yet for all this, his anger is not turned away, his hand is still upraised.”

Ephraim, Manasseh, and Judah were all tribes within Israel at large. Through the forsaking of the law of the Lord their God, we see violence toward eachother, their own people escalated and increased! What do you know about that? These people who one time unanimously were “God’s people” were at violent odds fighting and devouring each other through bloody civil conflict.

Yet America can too learn from such an example. After all, if God did not spare His own prized possession he once delighted to free from bondage in Egypt, what makes our country think it’s any more favored then these traitors.

Truth be told, any nation that rejects God and desires nothing of His ways, cannot expect his favor, blessings or peace. Lets look how God responded when the people cried for God to fix their problems, without any desire to change their ways

Isaiah 57:13 says “When you cry out for help, let your collection of idols save you! The wind will carry all of them off, a mere breath will blow them away. But whoever takes refuge in me will inherit the land and possess my holy mountain.”

God is saying, why do you ask my help now you have pushed me out of your nation? No! Cry out to those useless idols you abandoned me for, let them save you, and you know, you will find that they wont.”

Yet God leaves the door open for someone who sincerely repents of their sin and turns to Him, thats what the gospel is all about

“If you, Israel, will return, then return to me,” declares the Lord. “If you put your detestable idols out of my sight and no longer go astray, and if in a truthful, just and righteous way you swear, ‘As surely as the Lord lives,’ then the nations will invoke blessings by him and in him they will boast. ” This is what the Lord says to the people of Judah and to Jerusalem: “Break up your unplowed ground and do not sow among thorns. Circumcise yourselves to the Lord, circumcise your hearts, you people of Judah and inhabitants of Jerusalem, or my wrath will flare up and burn like fire because of the evil you have done— burn with no one to quench it. Jeremiah 4:1-4 –

Our nation may not collectively as a whole repent, but anyone who does can be saved and forgiven. God is merciful toward each of us who turn from sinful ways and embrace the Lord Jesus Christ

37 All those the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never drive away.
John 6:37 –

Reader if you are reading this today, please take heart what I have written. There is no sin too great that Christ cannot forgive, the only unpardonable offense is to reject Jesus entirely and go on in sin. Yet if you turn to Him for your cleansing, you will be healed.

Lesson From The Ninevites

Though Jonah at first tried to bail his assignment, eventually through hard persuasion he reluctantly goes.
Jonah finally obeys the Lord and goes proclaiming through Ninevah what God was planning to do. They respond as a large city in repentance:

Jonah began by going a day’s journey into the city, proclaiming, “Forty more days and Nineveh will be overthrown.” The Ninevites believed God. A fast was proclaimed, and all of them, from the greatest to the least, put on sackcloth. When Jonah’s warning reached the king of Nineveh, he rose from his throne, took off his royal robes, covered himself with sackcloth and sat down in the dust. This is the proclamation he issued in Nineveh: “By the decree of the king and his nobles: Do not let people or animals, herds or flocks, taste anything; do not let them eat or drink. But let people and animals be covered with sackcloth. Let everyone call urgently on God. Let them give up their evil ways and their violence. Who knows? God may yet relent and with compassion turn from his fierce anger so that we will not perish.” When God saw what they did and how they turned from their evil ways, he relented and did not bring on them the destruction he had threatened.
Jonah 3:4-10 –

Imagine that? This was a very large city, extremely populated. To get a better understanding in our modern sense how big this was- lets imagine someone like Jonah going through some place big like New York City, or Los Angelos, or a place like San Fransisco or Chicago. Imagine if Jonah was going through one of those cities of maybe some other large city in the world proclaiming that message.
Yet the Ninevites respond to God’s threat and make themselves low. So God relents. Though it be hard for us to imagine a large city like that responding in such one accord, it happened with Nineveh though.

When Jesus came with his message of repentance and faith. We see Jesus came across often a very different response. In fact most rejected His message, and he warned them
Then Jesus began to denounce the towns in which most of his miracles had been performed, because they did not repent. 21 “Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. 22 But I tell you, it will be more bearable for Tyre and Sidon on the day of judgment than for you. 23 And you, Capernaum, will you be lifted to the heavens? No, you will go down to Hades. For if the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Sodom, it would have remained to this day. 24 But I tell you that it will be more bearable for Sodom on the day of judgment than for you.” Matthew 11:20-24 –

Find it interesting, Jonah did not perform a single miracle to get the Ninevites to respond. All he did was basically say “Fourty more days and God is going to wipe you off the face of the earth” They then believed God, and responded accordingly.

Yet Chorizan, Bethsaida, and Capernaum saw more evidence yet still “they did not repent.”
What is Jesus saying? The more exposure people have to the message yet reject it, will be held even more guilty of refusal to believe and repent.

Those who have had more exposure to the gospel and the truth and reject it will face even more severe judgement. So it is always wise we do not reject what we hear and harden our hearts. It is possible to have been shown enough to believe and repent and still turn away.

Partial Obedience- Vs Wholehearted Obedience

Then someone said to Saul, “Look, the men are sinning against the Lord by eating meat that has blood in it.” “You have broken faith,” he said. “Roll a large stone over here at once.” Then he said, “Go out among the men and tell them, ‘Each of you bring me your cattle and sheep, and slaughter them here and eat them. Do not sin against the Lord by eating meat with blood still in it.’” So everyone brought his ox that night and slaughtered it there. 1 Samuel 14:33-34 –

King Saul here seems to be acting as if he was loyal to the Lord and very religious on this occassion, in fact he keeps his men from violating an Old Testament Law found in Leviticus

“‘Do not eat any meat with the blood still in it. “‘Do not practice divination or seek omens. Leviticus 19:26 –

Yet we see Saul’s life was not consistently one of obedience at all. We see in 1 Samuel 13:12-14 he is rebuked by Samuel the prophet for violating his bounds as king and offering a burnt offering. We see Saul later also disobeys clear direct orders God gave him when he spared the Amalekite king Agag and took the plunder from the battle with the people of Amalek.
(See 1 Samuel 15:1-23)

Years to follow Saul spends years trying to hunt and kill David, an innocent man who did him no wrong nor was deserving to be put to death.

And last probably notable thing was Saul does the unthinkable and violates the Law of God by consulting a medium for guidance (See 1 Chronicles 10:13 and 1 Samuel 28:1-25)

So Saul violated on this last occasion God’s command found in (Leviticus 19:31 and Leviticus 20:6)

Though Saul kept one command by not eating meat with blood still in it, Saul was not wholeheartedly obeying God as a consistent part of his life style.

Saul had a very religious way of talking as we can observe. In this same chapter of 2 Samuel 14, Saul had bound his men through an oath that they could not eat until he had avenged himself on the Philistines. His son, Jonathan knew nothing about it and eats a little honey, when Saul found out, he acts all pious and says “Saul said, “May God deal with me, be it ever so severely, if you do not die, Jonathan. ” 1 Samuel 14:44 –

Fortunately Saul’s men keep him from killing Jonathan. Yet we can see that though Saul was for the most part in rebellion toward the Lord, he still acted as though he was a devout godly person- “May God deal with me, be ever so severely, if you do not die Jonathan.”

What can we learn? Well its one thing to throw around churchy phrases and say religious things- but the true test of real faith is not how many worship songs you know, how many Bible verses you can recite or memorize. True faith is demonstrated by a lifestyle of obedience.

When it came down to it, King Saul was ok with obeying the commands of God he selectively chose to, but broke many other commands as a lifestyle.

1 John says “No one who lives in him keeps on sinning. No one who continues to sin has either seen him or known him.
1 John 3:6 –

Which means, to practice sinning as a lifestyle proves we do not know God or belong to Christ. Does a Christ follower sin? We all stumble and sin, but true followers of Christ aim to sin as little as they can, not see how much they can get away with. There are people who call themselves Christians, but many are engaged in a lifestyle they know God’s Word would call sin-

To live willfully in a lifestyle that is defined as sin through Scripture and not turn away from that- but keep going in it without any concern should cause that person to do what Paul says

Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves. Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you —unless, of course, you fail the test?
2 Corinthians 13:5 –

It’s one thing to stumble, struggle, fall and repent- and it’s another thing to make a continual practice of sin, as we see with the life of Saul.

The Sign Of A Shriveled Hand

That same day the man of God gave a sign: “This is the sign the Lord has declared: The altar will be split apart and the ashes on it will be poured out.” When King Jeroboam heard what the man of God cried out against the altar at Bethel, he stretched out his hand from the altar and said, “Seize him!” But the hand he stretched out toward the man shriveled up, so that he could not pull it back. Also, the altar was split apart and its ashes poured out according to the sign given by the man of God by the word of the Lord. Then the king said to the man of God, “Intercede with the Lord your God and pray for me that my hand may be restored.” So the man of God interceded with the Lord, and the king’s hand was restored and became as it was before.
1 Kings 13:3-6 –

We see Jeroboam was confronted about his sin by the “man of God” and tries to have the prophet arrested. Yet as he stretches out his finger to give the order, suddenly his hand becomes paralyzed and withered and unable to move!

You may think that was enough of a sign to Jeroboam to strike the fear of God back into his heart. Yet we see instead, when he asks for prayer of healing, and the prophet praise and the hand is restored, Jeroboam’s heart still remains unchanged. Jeroboam wanted healing for his hand, but not healing for his sinful heart.

Jeroboam we see later goes on doing what he always had done, sin.

Even after this, Jeroboam did not change his evil ways, but once more appointed priests for the high places from all sorts of people. Anyone who wanted to become a priest he consecrated for the high places. This was the sin of the house of Jeroboam that led to its downfall and to its destruction from the face of the earth. 1 Kings 13:33-34 –

We see in our times many challenges, many afflictions that have come on the world. The Corona virus has wreaked havok on a global scale and people have been praying that God would “heal the world”- yet as believers we must also be praying God grants people repentance. Even if the virus completely disappeared and left as suddenly as it came, this world will still have millions of people that will die in sin and face eternal separation from God forever.

This should be a real concern we have. We should not just pray for global healing and not be concerned about the eternal state of the people around us. The virus has capability to kill only the physical body of some who contract it, but sin will kill every person’s soul who practices it. Sin like a deadly virus thar infects the hearts of people and guarantees 100% eternal mortality rate.

Some who have gotten the COVID virus have a chance to possibly survive it, but make no mistake- rejection of the gospel and continuing in sin will without fail, kill forever the souls of mankind and there is no chance of avoiding that.

Let us look back and consider what happened to Jeroboam, if he had responded to this warning from God due to the afflicted hand, then he would truly have been healed in a greater way then just having his hand restored.

The greatest healing is one of a spiritual nature. Not just physical. Jesus Christ came to set us free from sin, and its toxic hold over our hearts and lives. If we have not experienced that, no matter what good happens in our lives here will not truly benefit us. Sadly for many, the best life they will ever experience is just here and now- but it is not worth selling ones soul.

25 For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it. 26 What good will it be for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul? Matthew 16:25-26 –

True life worth living is not one for sin, but serving Christ. It is not easy life, yet it is worth the cost and commitment to do life His way. He calls us to follow him and repent of our sins so we can truly be who we were created to be. Yet we lose more deciding to hold on to these lives here and being captain of our lives. In that case, we will end our lives in ruin, regret, and in Judgement.

Willing To Submit To God’s Plan, Or Self Deceived?

2 Chronicles 18:7 The king of Israel replied to Jehoshaphat, “There is one more man who could consult the Lord for us, but I hate him. He never prophesies anything but trouble for me! His name is Micaiah son of Imlah.”

In this story, the King of Judah (Jehoshaphat) went to visit his northern counterpart, Ahab, King of Israel. When Jehoshaphat went to meet Ahab, Ahab asked if Jehoshaphat and his army would aid his troops to reclaim Ramoth Gilead, a place that the Arameans had captured and taken over.

Jehosphaphat agrees but adds they ought to seek God’s guidance first: “Jehoshaphat replied, “Why, of course! You and I are as one, and my troops are your troops. We will certainly join you in battle.” 4Then Jehoshaphat added, “But first let’s find out what the Lord says.”

Ahab complies but brings 400 of his own appointed prophets to predict his success. Jehoshaphat asks if there is a real prophet of the Lord that can weigh in. Then Ahab says:

“There is one more man who could consult the Lord for us, but I hate him. He never prophesies anything but trouble for me! His name is Micaiah son of Imlah.”

So Micaiah is brought into their presence, and take a look at what is said to him in verse 12.

12Meanwhile, the messenger who went to get Micaiah said to him, “Look, all the prophets are promising victory for the king. Be sure that you agree with them and promise success.”

Micaiah responds firmly and says: ““As surely as the Lord lives, I will say only what my God says.”

So he speaks the truth and warns Ahab, king of Israel, that he will not succeed. Ahab is angry and has Micaiah put in prison saying:

25“Arrest him!” the king of Israel ordered. “Take him back to Amon, the governor of the city, and to my son Joash. 26Give them this order from the king: ‘Put this man in prison, and feed him nothing but bread and water until I return safely from the battle!’”

Micaiah as he is being taken away says ““If you return safely, it will mean that the Lord has not spoken through me!” Then he added to those standing around, “Everyone mark my words!”

Ahab does indeed die in battle and fortunately Jehoshaphat, the godly king, escapes with his life is chided by another prophet for even getting mixed up with a man like Ahab.

-Yet there is much insight from this passage. Ahab was a man who was self deceived and bent on sin. He wanted to gather false prophets to predict what he wanted to hear, 400 false prophets to be precise.

Ahab consents to hear what the true prophet says, but he says he hates him because he never prophesies anything good about him.

When Micaiah is brought in, Ahab’s servant who brought him forward basically says “See what all these other people are saying, now agree with them.” Very shortly later Micaiah sarcastically says: “Micaiah replied sarcastically, “Yes, go up and be victorious, for you will have victory over them!”

Ahab gets angry and says, “15But the king replied sharply, “How many times must I demand that you speak only the truth to me when you speak for the Lord?”

So then Micaiah gives him the full truth. And how does Ahab respond? He has him arrested? What the?

We see when Micaiah sarcastically plays along, Ahab gets mad and says Micaiah is lying, then when Miciah says what the Lord really said, Ahab has him arrested!

What Ahab was really after was to change what truth was. Ahab wanted the prediction he wanted, and he wanted it to be true. Yet it was not the case. Ahab really wanted God to bless his plan he already made up his mind he was going to go through with. He was not open to having the Lord correct or change the plan he already firmly decided he was going through with.

We can also learn from this story. We can be guilty of this too if we have not resolved in our hearts we will obey the will of God regardless of whether we like the plan or not. We should always be open to hearing what God has to say and be willing to do what he says. In James 1:5-6 it says

If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. James 1:5-6 –

Basically what James is saying is God will reveal His will and give us wisdom, but we cannot be double minded and unwilling to do what He directs, like evil Ahab was.

Also we know here in our time there are people like this, like Ahab in this way- they may ask what God’s Word really says about this matter or that, often they ask what the Word says on controversial topics, then when they are told, they get angry often.

Our culture has people in it, that do not really want to know what the Bible says but are hoping that they can find loopholes to condone how they already decided they want to live. Some people go to extremes and misuse certain passages of Scripture to justify their decision they already made.

There are people who decide if they do not like what the Word of God says, they will find churches that preach the things they want. Not every church upholds the Word of God accurately. Like Ahab’s false prophets, there are false preachers out there in this world too. False messages that support lifestyles of sin and water down the truth.

Yet at the conclusion, the Word of God is truth, whether we like it or not, whether it supports our plans and decisions or not. We can either adjust our plans and lives to fit God’s agenda- or we will stubbornly go our own way and harm ourselves like Ahab did. Ik his case, it cost him his life.

Before You Join Any Cause, Consider.

Later, Jehoshaphat king of Judah made an alliance with Ahaziah king of Israel, whose ways were wicked. He agreed with him to construct a fleet of trading ships. After these were built at Ezion Geber, Eliezer son of Dodavahu of Mareshah prophesied against Jehoshaphat, saying, “Because you have made an alliance with Ahaziah, the Lord will destroy what you have made.” The ships were wrecked and were not able to set sail to trade.
2 Chronicles 20:35-37 –

Interesting thing to note, it was not that the cause itself was wicked, but rather the person Jehoshaphat teamed up with was. It did not say that constructing trading ships was a sin in and of itself, but he joined a cause with a wicked person. Jehoshaphat on several ocassions got himself into this trouble. Earlier on he almost died joining Ahab in battle for reclaiming Ramoth Gilead.

We see after Jehoshaphat escapes near death, the prophet rebukes him.

Jehu the seer, the son of Hanani, went out to meet him and said to the king, “Should you help the wicked and love those who hate the Lord? Because of this, the wrath of the Lord is on you. There is, however, some good in you, for you have rid the land of the Asherah poles and have set your heart on seeking God. ”
2 Chronicles 19:2-3 –

The key thing here is the term, “help the wicked”

And later on in his life we see: “Jehoshaphat king of Judah made an alliance with Ahaziah king of Israel, whose ways were wicked.”

Yet what can we glean? Well, we must consider carefully who we help or what cause we stand for as believers. Far too many believers in our time seem cave in to the world around them. Many in fear of being labeled nasty names keep quiet over Biblical beliefs that society does not like. In attempts to avoid being called names some of these individuals even show support for those who do what the Bible says is sin.

This is not to say we should treat unbelievers unkindly. We should be kind and love everyone. Yet its one thing to show love and respect to those who do not know Christ, and its a totally different matter to just go along with how they live.

It’s one thing to love, its another thing to approve of sin. We are called to love everyone, yet we are never never called to agree with everyone or show support for sin.

The Bible is clear that should not support wrongdoing, on contrary, we are called to speak out against it:

Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them. It is shameful even to mention what the disobedient do in secret.
Ephesians 5:11-12 –

Some believers fear though that they will be called names though if they share their Biblical view, yet in Paul‘s time there were also people caving into the people around them to avoid persecution.

Those who want to impress people by means of the flesh are trying to compel you to be circumcised. The only reason they do this is to avoid being persecuted for the cross of Christ. Galatians 6:12 –

In this specific time, circumcision was a big controversial issue. The Jews around them at the time were very adament that circumcision was necessary for salvation. Yet Paul knew it was by grace through faith in Christ, not outward circumcision that saved. Therefore Paul got persecuted for his stand for truth.

Likewise, we too will face some degree of hostility if we are true to the truth. Yet we have no other option. We got to make up our minds that we will revere Christ over the opinions of people around us:

Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ.
Galatians 1:10 –

We are told we will face some amount of persecution, if we truly belong to Christ

In fact, everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, while evildoers and impostors will go from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived.
2 Timothy 3:12-13 –

We are called to be true to our presentation of the message, the gospel, and Word of God, regardless of what others think

Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage —with great patience and careful instruction. For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths. But you, keep your head in all situations, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, discharge all the duties of your ministry.
2 Timothy 4:2-5 –

Yet we are always supposed to do so in a way that is reflective of the love of Christ, not retaliating or in anger, but responding gently when people oppose us

And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful. Opponents must be gently instructed, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth, and that they will come to their senses and escape from the trap of the devil, who has taken them captive to do his will. 2 Timothy 2:24-26 –