Ask Your Preacher

Ask Your Preacher

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Cleopas

Friday, September 18, 2020
Who was Cleopas?

Sincerely,
Wondering

Dear Wondering,

Cleopas is only mentioned one time in the whole Bible.  Cleopas was one of two disciples that were walking on the road to Emmaus when Jesus appeared to them after the resurrection (Lk 24:13-15).  The two men didn’t recognize Jesus, and Cleopas asked Him why He didn’t know about Jesus (Lk 24:18).

A Weighty Matter

Thursday, September 17, 2020
     Let me start off by saying I'm not trying to hate on overweight people.  I understand not everyone can help it, but my question is: is being obese or overweight because of being lazy (not exercising or eating right) a sin? 1 Cornithians 6:19-20 tells us that our bodies are temples of God.  And 1 Cornthians 3:16-17 tells us that anyone who defiles the temple of God, God will destroy.  So isn't being obese (like not taking care of yourself to the point of obesity) a sin because of the risks of sickness and diseases from obesity?

Sincerely,
Fed Up With Fat

Dear Fed Up With Fat,

Physical health is important, but it shouldn’t be overemphasized.  Physical health is certainly a blessing (3 Jhn 1:2). Paul mentions that there is value, (not high value, but value nonetheless) in physical fitness training (1 Tim. 4:8). Paul told Timothy to make sure and take care of his stomach ailment (1 Tim 5:23). He also mentions that your body is a temple that ought to be used to glorify God (1 Cor 6:19-20).

On the other hand, fatness is also often associated with blessings (Pr 11:25, Pr 15:30). Everyone recognizes that a few extra pounds are a greater blessing than not enough.

The issue comes down to whether or not we care for our bodies – which are gifts from God. If someone woefully neglects their body (through gluttony, poisoning it by doing drugs or smoking, taking excessive risks of bodily injury, etc.), they are sinning. As we make decisions regarding our own health, we must be sure to avoid judging others in this area. The definition of ‘healthy’ is up for debate even among top nutritional scientists. A healthy body and lifestyle will look different for every person. All you can control is yourself. We must strive to live with a good conscience (Heb 13:18) and consider how to glorify God with our bodies.

Don't Think About It

Wednesday, September 16, 2020
     My question is one that has been bothering me a lot lately.  I am married and totally in love with my husband.  He is so wonderful to me, and he is a strong spiritual leader for me.  He is everything (and more) that I prayed and asked God for.  But, on occasion, the thought of divorce crosses my mind.  I don't know why it comes into my mind.  I don't want that for my life; when I made my vows to my husband, I didn't make them lightly… not to mention I am so happy and couldn't imagine my life without him.  Now what has been concerning me is in Matt 5:21-30, we are taught that even thinking about sinning (which from my understanding, divorce is a sin unless there has been unfaithfulness in the marriage) can be dangerous for our souls.  I am concerned that because the thought of divorce pops in to my head once and a while that my soul is in danger.  Even though I have no intention of ever acting on that thought, I want to live a happy and long life with my husband.  Do you think that my soul is in danger?  Thank you for your feedback and the work you do.

Sincerely,
Totally in Love

Dear Totally In Love,

Dwelling upon evil desires is sinful (such as lusting after a woman – Matt 5:28), but a thought popping into your head is not the same as dwelling upon evil.

You don’t have complete control over what thoughts come into your mind (this is also true of emotions), but you do have control over what you do with those thoughts.  As a simple example, if someone says the word ‘dog’, you will immediately think of a dog.  Whether you want to or not!  (In fact, you are thinking about dogs right now.)  Jas 1:13-15 points out that sin occurs when we allow our thoughts to dwell upon sinful behavior until we actually act upon them.  Merely having the thought pop into your mind is not the same as dwelling upon it.  You are obviously happily married, have no desire to divorce, and as long as you continue to shove the thought out of your mind as you are doing right now, you aren’t sinning at all.

Is He Mad At Me?

Tuesday, September 15, 2020
     I'm interested in understanding where you find in the Bible that you can lose your salvation.  And how do you re-obtain it, or in what way do you know God isn't "upset" with you anymore, so you can regain your salvation?

Sincerely,
Verse Please

Dear Verse Please,

The Bible clearly says that you can lose your salvation.  Heb 3:12 says that we must be wary and protect our hearts because an evil, unbelieving heart can fall away.  2 Pet 3:17 says that we can lose our salvation if we get caught up in false teaching (1 Tim 4:1 also states this).  If we return to a life of ungodliness, then we crucify Christ again (Heb 6:4-6).

We are warned to not “drift” away from the Lord (Heb 2:1) or “backslide” (Pr 1:32) into old sinful ways.  Once we are baptized, we are told to grow in the Lord and mature in our faith (1 Pet 2:2).  Baptism is the beginning of a new life, but God calls us to be faithful until death (Rev 2:10).  A Christian can know that they are not lukewarm by properly examining their motives and lifestyle (1 Cor 11:28-30).  God constantly forgives faithful and honest people for their sins (1 Jn 1:9), but if we neglect our salvation (Heb 2:3) or stop growing, we have no hope left (Heb 10:26-27).  God is "upset" when we stop trying to grow and stop trying to be faithful... that is when our salvation is in jeopardy.

The Road Less Traveled By

Monday, September 14, 2020
     Why do I feel like I am being led down a good path, but yet, I still feel like I am being tested as I go forward?

Sincerely,
Treading Carefully

Dear Treading Carefully,

Trials are a part of life, and when you do the right thing, you are bound to have them.  The Bible says that God never tempts us to do evil (Jas 1:13).  God never purposefully puts us in a situation with a desire for us to sin.  The devil wants to devour you with sin, but God never does (1 Pet 5:8).  However, God does put us in situations in order to find out what we are made of.  God tested Abraham when He asked Abraham to sacrifice Isaac (Gen 22:1).  God put Abraham in a position where he could succeed or fail – but the key is that God wanted him to succeed (Gen 22:14-18).  Abraham was tried by God (Heb 11:17), so God could bless him.  God may put us in circumstances that are difficult, but His desire is always to benefit us.

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