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Observe and hear all these words which I command you, that it may go well with you, and with your children after you forever, when you do that which is good and right in the sight of the LORD your God.
(Deut. 12:28)
One of the things I used to drill into our children as they grew up was how easy it was to get along with me—if they would simply avoid violating the very few things that would stir my anger.

I simply asked that they kept their rooms and bathroom clean and not leave "mess" trails around the house. Since we had trained them how to be clean from very early on, it didn't need to be a problem. They knew what to do.

Each of them also had one or two tasks per week they needed to get done—nothing major. For example, they had to take the garbage out to the curb on Mondays. When they were younger, the rules revolved more around picking up, making their beds, and not fighting or being disrespectful to each other. The point is this: the things that could provoke me were very few.

I was always amazed when those few things were violated—and let them know so.

I also let them know that when I had to deal with them because of their lack of respect to these few issues, the anger they saw was anger they brought on and could have easily avoided—in other words, the lack of peace was initiated because of their indifference.

Once their attitudes changed, they quickly re-experienced great peace and harmony. It was important for me to keep my temperament even and pleasant and keep the molehill issues in our lives just that: molehills. Renee, my wife, was always great at helping me in that area.

Early on in my walk with the Lord, I would take note of the things that provoked the Lord; I would take note of things that the Lord hated.

I knew I didn't like to be provoked and had my reasons for what I wanted. Why wouldn't I honor the Lord, whose ways are knowing are infinite? I purposed to learn what the Lord hated, so I myself could learn to avoid and hate the same things.

I learned that the Lord hates spiritual contamination. To understand this truth, you must first know that there are two spiritual kingdoms that we don't see with the naked eye. They can only be spiritually understood.

The ability to spiritually understand anything comes only through the Holy Spirit. First Corinthians 2:12,14 helps us understand this truth: "We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us....The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned."

The Holy Spirit helps us understand that there are two spiritual kingdoms in Colossians 1:13: "For God has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of His Son Jesus whom He loves."

Satan's Power Of Deception
In the world we live in, there are two kingdoms at odds with each other. There is God's kingdom and there is Satan's. It will help you to understand that Satan's authority lies in the only power he has over those who follow him: the power of deception.

You might think, "Why would anyone follow Satan?" The answer is this: when people don't follow God's ways, they are following Satan. They might not realize this—in fact, they usually don't.

It's only in seeking to know and love God that they discover how they had empowered Satan through their actions. I personally felt shocked and devastated to find this out when I gave my life to Jesus.

Looking back now, I could fill a journal with all the ways I promoted evil things contrary to God's will through my little selfish life—something I truly regret. I've exchanged kingdoms. Now I promote the Lord's plan in every way I can.

In understanding this, I learned about spiritual contamination. God hates it;it is an abomination to Him. I learned of spiritual contamination through many verses. One of these instances is found in Deuteronomy 12:
Be careful to obey...so that it may always go well with you and your children after you, because you will be doing what is good and right in the eyes of the LORD your God. The LORD your God will cut off before you the nations you are about to invade and dispossess. But when you have driven them out and settled in their land, and after they have been destroyed before you, be careful not to be ensnared by inquiring about their gods, saying, "How do these nations serve their gods? We will do the same." You must not worship the LORD your God in their way, because in worshiping their gods, they do all kinds of detestable things the LORD hates. They even burn their sons and daughters in the fire as sacrifices to their gods.
(vv. 28-31)
These verses tell us that the "world" is going to do all sorts of things that are contrary to what God wants. They will make you feel stupid if you don't agree with what they do.

"You don't think sex outside of marriage is OK? What century do you live in?"

They will put pressure on you to believe their ways are "good and inclusive" of all people. God isn't looking for inclusive. God is looking for those who will understand what His ways are and follow them.

God doesn't, nor do we, hate people. We hate the detestable things they do. We love and respect people, but more importantly, we love and promote God's plan.

What is God's heart in all this? What it says in today's Fresh Manna verse:
Observe and hear all these words which I command you, that it may go well with you, and with your children after you forever, when you do that which is good and right in the sight of the LORD your God.
(Deut. 12:28)

Author Biography

Tim Burt
Web site: Todays Fresh Manna
 
Pastor Tim became a part of the leadership team at Living Word Christian Center in 1984 and served as Associate Pastor from 1989 to 2017. He and His wife Renee, also a Pastor at Living Word, resigned, feeling impressed by God to pursue the tremendous growth of their ministry "Fresh Manna," as well as teaching conferences and seminars, and increasing their involvement on the mission field through Tim & Renee Burt Ministries.
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