Godís righteous judgement or condemnation is the only kind that is allowed by Him, because He is without sin and He sees the intent of the heart and soul, which we, as sinful or corrupt people are incapable of doing.
We are to discern the differences between the things and actions of other people who live in the heavenly will of God as opposed to those who are worldly, so that we can avoid the people and things that are worldly.
Jesus tells us to be perfect as our Father in heaven is perfect (Matthew 5:48), and none of us can fully do this, as least as long as we live in this sinful and corrupt world; and hopefully one day we will be able to fulfill His commandment.
Nevertheless, we are never to willingly give in the corrupt and violent ways of this earth; we are constantly to strive to live in the heavenly will of God here on earth as it is in heaven, just as Jesus taught us to pray (Matthew 6:10).
So, with these things in mind, letís look at Jeremiah 18:1-11Ö
1. The word which came to Jeremiah from the LORD saying,
2 "Arise and go down to the potter's house, and there I shall announce My words to you."
In the Bible we often find that God uses symbolism to amplify His message, as He is doing here with Jeremiah.
3. Then I went down to the potter's house, and there he was, making something on the wheel.
4. But the vessel that he was making of clay was spoiled in the hand of the potter; so he remade it into another vessel, as it pleased the potter to make.
5. Then the word of the LORD came to me saying,
6. "Can I not, O house of Israel, deal with you as this potter does?" declares the LORD. "Behold, like the clay in the potter's hand, so are you in My hand, O house of Israel.
In other words, neither the house of Israel, then, nor we, today, can stand up against the power of God, which also indirectly means that we should be living in the heavenly will of God, or we may be facing Godís righteous judgement, as Israel did.
7. "At one moment I might speak concerning a nation or concerning a kingdom to uproot, to pull down, or to destroy it;
8. if that nation against which I have spoken turns from its evil, I will relent concerning the calamity I planned to bring on it.
This is one of the things that we have been talking about for many years, for I strongly believe that if we are not following Godís heavenly will here on earth as it is in heaven, where there is no pain or suffering or death, then we will be facing Godís righteous judgement in the near future.
9. "Or at another moment I might speak concerning a nation or concerning a kingdom to build up or to plant it;
10. if it does evil in My sight by not obeying My voice, then I will think better of the good with which I had promised to bless it.
We are never so perfect that we can rest on the fact that we have lived in Godís heavenly will, so that it doesnít matter if we occasionally fall back into the corrupt and evil ways of this world, for God always sees the intent of our heart and soul.
11. "So now then, speak to the men of Judah and against the inhabitants of Jerusalem saying, 'Thus says the LORD, "Behold, I am fashioning calamity against you and devising a plan against you. Oh turn back, each of you from his evil way, and reform your ways and your deeds. "'
As we know from history, they didnít repent and change their ways, so Godís righteous judgement sent them into exile for seventy years and Jerusalem was destroyed.
Israel tempted God by not living in His heavenly will here on earth and God wouldnít tolerate it any longer, and for the most part, our society is doing the same thing today with all of its violence and warring madness against both humans and other animals.
Letís continue our discussion by looking at Psalm 139:1-18, and as we do, note the way the psalmist begins by expressing his understanding of the fact that God understands the intent of our heart and soulÖ
1. O LORD, Thou hast searched me and known me.
2. Thou dost know when I sit down and when I rise up;
Thou dost understand my thought from afar.
This is what it means when God says that He knows the intent of our heart.
3. Thou dost scrutinize my path and my lying down,
And art intimately acquainted with all my ways.
4. Even before there is a word on my tongue,
Behold, O LORD, Thou dost know it all.
5. Thou hast enclosed me behind and before,
And laid Thy hand upon me.
6. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;
It is too high, I cannot attain to it.
7. Where can I go from Thy Spirit?
Or where can I flee from Thy presence?
In other words, the psalmist knows that he can never attain the perfection of God, but that doesnít mean that we are to give up trying; to the contrary, this only means that we are to try all the harder.
8. If I ascend to heaven, Thou art there;
If I make my bed in Sheol, behold, Thou art there.
9. If I take the wings of the dawn,
If I dwell in the remotest part of the sea,
10. Even there Thy hand will lead me,
And Thy right hand will lay hold of me.
No matter what we do, no matter where we go, God is always there, and He knows whether or not we are living in His heavenly will and He desires to do so.
Therefore, if we are not living in His heavenly will, or at least trying our best to do so, then we are likely to face Godís righteous judgement.
11. If I say, "Surely the darkness will overwhelm me,
And the light around me will be night,"
12. Even the darkness is not dark to Thee,
And the night is as bright as the day.
Darkness and light are alike to Thee.
There is no escaping Godís presence, and from our perspective, it is much more enjoyable living in His heavenly will here on earth as it is in heaven, and not being violent, as most of the earth is, and not being the knowing cause of any pain, suffering, or death to any human or animal.
13 For Thou didst form my inward parts;
Thou didst weave me in my mother's womb.
God not only knows our intent, but He also made every part of our physical bodies; there is nothing that escapes Godís awareness.
And this understanding brings the psalmist to the point of thanking and praising God.
14. I will give thanks to Thee, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Wonderful are Thy works,
And my soul knows it very well.
15. My frame was not hidden from Thee,
When I was made in secret,
And skillfully wrought in the depths of the earth.
16. Thine eyes have seen my unformed substance;
And in Thy book they were all written,
The days that were ordained for me,
When as yet there was not one of them.
Not only are we to be thankful for who we are, but we are also to be thankful for the way God thinks and acts.
17. How precious also are Thy thoughts to me, O God!
How vast is the sum of them!
18. If I should count them, they would outnumber the sand.
When I awake, I am still with Thee.
There is really no way for us to completely understand every aspect of God here on earth, but we know enough, or should know enough to live in His heavenly will as a witness to the corrupt world around us.
Sometimes understanding the ways of God can be difficult, such as what we are told in Luke 14:25-33Ö
25. Now great multitudes were going along with Him; and He turned and said to them,
26. "If anyone comes to Me, and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be My disciple.
Jesus isnít even a little bit egotistical, and He does not go against the word of God; therefore, He could not mean to hate ourselves and our family; so this must mean that we are to love God to such an extent that by comparison it would seen like we hate ourselves and our family.
27. "Whoever does not carry his own cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple.
To carry our own cross means that we have a deeply repentant attitude.
28 "For which one of you, when he wants to build a tower, does not first sit down and calculate the cost, to see if he has enough to complete it?
In other words, we are not to put ourselves in any position where we cannot afford to complete it or pay off any debt, or we could say that we are never to overextend ourselves.
29. "Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation, and is not able to finish, all who observe it begin to ridicule him,
30. saying,' This man began to build and was not able to finish.'
31. "Or what king, when he sets out to meet another king in battle, will not first sit down and take counsel whether he is strong enough with ten thousand men to encounter the one coming against him with twenty thousand?
32. "Or else, while the other is still far away, he sends a delegation and asks terms of peace.
33. "So therefore, no one of you can be My disciple who does not give up all his own possessions.
Sometimes our worldly possessions can help us do Godís work, but we need to be willing to give it all to the work of the Lord and not look back and mourn over it.
This is all part of living in the heavenly will of the Lord here on earth as it is in heaven, and it is what He sees as part of Godís righteous judgement, for God sees both the good and the bad.
Are we going to live in His heavenly will?
I sure hope and pray we do.
We can do it, if we want to.
Return to: Sermons Archive