Bless the Lord, O my soul,   
And all that is within me,   
bless His holy name.   
Bless the Lord, O my soul,   
And forget none of His benefits.   
- Psalms 103:1-2   
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The Wolrd In Which We Live

            Janie and I were discussing one morning about how people in the world will go about and boldly tell lies about someone else without giving it a second thought. Why would others lie about someone else and say thing which were not true? Why would someone set out to destroy the character of someone else by making false accusations against them? In the workplace setting we see people “stabbing in the back” other people by the remarks and tales that they spread about others.

             This action by others brings to mind of how certain ones treated Jesus. We find in Mark 14:55-59“Now the chief priests and the whole Council kept trying to obtain testimony against Jesus to put Him to death, and they were not finding any. For many were giving false testimony against Him, but their testimony was not consistent. Some stood up and began to give false testimony against Him, saying, “We heard Him say, ‘I will destroy this temple made with hands, and in three days I will build another made without hands.’” Not even in this respect was their testimony consistent.”Mark records that even in these days there were others who readily gave false witness against Jesus. In other words they plainly lied concerning things about Jesus. And when we are the victims of such actions it is very hard for us to contain our feelings. It hurts us and we are shocked as to why someone would do this.

            We can see the inner strength of Jesus as he was confronted with this happening against him by his reaction as recorded in Mark 14: 60,61 “The high priest stood up and came forward and questioned Jesus, saying, “Do You not answer? “What is it that these men are testifying against You?” But He kept silent and did not answer.” Most likely we would be defending our character against such actions and pleading our case against the false accusations.

              Jordan and I talked about his line of work as a police officer and how he has seen the “other side” of people in this world which he had not been exposed to in growing up. Often times in talking to others about the treatment that they receive from the hands of others in the world or about how others act and what they do I have to remind them that they should not be shocked by such actions. I try to explain to them that this is how the world is supposed to act. This is the true nature of the world and that we should expect such treatment from them. This is how the world is supposed to behave in their treatment to others.

             I remind myself often of what Jesus said in John 3:19,20 “This is the judgment, that the Light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the Light, for their deeds were evil. For everyone who does evil hates the Light, and does not come to the Light for fear that his deeds will be exposed.” The world loves darkness rather than light. People enjoy and get pleasure out of acting in a cruel way to others. They love lying and saying false things about others. People love backbiting, they love slandering, they love being greedy, they love to covet and they love being malicious.

            I must remember that Jesus explained that Satan is the ruler of this world and this is his empire. John 12:31 records these words of Jesus “Now judgment is upon this world; now the ruler of this world will be cast out.” In John 16:11 Jesus says “ and concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world has been judged.” The apostle Paul calls Satan the god of this world who blinds the mind as recorded in 2 Corinthians 4:4 “in whose case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelieving so that they might not see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.”

            The world does not accept Jesus because His truth makes manifest their actions and deeds as being evil and so they are convicted in their own hearts that they are not pleasing to the Father. Jesus said in John 7:7 “The world cannot hate you, but it hates Me because I testify of it, that its deeds are evil.” People in their thoughts and actions are evil and resent those who try to uphold the truth. So those who by their living according to God’s Holy Word bring to light the evil deeds of others and naturally will be persecuted and ridiculed by the way of life that they chose in being a follow of God’s Word. We as Christians should expect such treatment from the world.

            So next time, don’t be shocked but realize that the people of the world are doing what is expected of them to do by the ruler of this world, Satan.

                                                                                                   - Larry Bumgardner