It struck me today, as I was reading through 2 Samuel, of just how relatively easy it is to discern when you are stepping outside of WHAT God is doing but how much more subtle it is to understand when we step away from HOW God is doing it.
Regarding the former, whilst we may try to fool ourselves that we are still 'right up there' with the Lord, we know, and others surely know, that this is not really so. However, what about when we have kept hold of the same noble objectives or ends, but begun to use different means to acheive them? Is God as passionate about our obedience in the means as He is about our determination to acheive the ends?
It strikes me that the latter is a far more subtle, and therefore deceptive, error than the former - certainly from the point of view of our enemy.
If we can retain a common agreement about the ends to be acheived but then be diverted to seek their acheivement through unrighteous, unbiblical or disobedient means, we end up building poor foundations that almost certainly spell death for our original (good) objectives.
In the 'step away from God camp' (that's the easy one to spot) we might include 'Alexander the metalworker' from 2 Timothy, who pretty obviously abandoned any pretence at following the Lord - no problem rumbling him, but, then we have those who apparantly 'bewitched' the Galatians with their 'zeal' and much talk of God and righteousness. Despite the words, however, they had adopted other means of acheiving those fine sounding ends. Their 'means' sounded reasonable at first, speaking as they did about the law and the promises.... but the means were not God's and if they were pursued, the ends would never be acheived. Has this any relevance to us, today?
No idea, what do you think? Maybe certain American 'evangelists' currently active in Uganda may have a twinge or two......but us?
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