Action or Inaction

Have you ever sought repentance for something you did? How did it work out for you? Did you return to that which you were doing before repentance?  Was there even an opportunity for repentance?  When we will find ourselves in situations that is directly  against the will of God for us, and even against His commands to us, we have to suffer the consequences of our action. We may come to our senses, and want to repent, but the repentance we seek is to change things for the better for us. God’s forgiveness, does not necessarily mean that we get a do-over, an opportunity to be absolved from the consequences of our sin. Consider Esau, who sold his birthright to his brother for a meal. He was hungry, and at that time the birthright was far off, and he didn’t need it. Yet his consequences for the sin he committed lasted longer than he intended. Listen to the account of this in Hebrews: “Make sure that no one falls short of the grace of God and that no root of bitterness springs up, causing trouble and by it, defiling many. And make sure that there isn’t any immoral or irreverent person like Esau, who sold his birthright in exchange for one meal. For you know that later, when he wanted to inherit the blessing, he was rejected because he didn’t find any opportunity for repentance, though he sought it with tears.” Hebrews 12:15-17 Perhaps he thought that Jacob would forget the whole thing and he would again have his birthright, but his sin was giving it up, for which there was no return, even though he could be forgiven, the repentance he sought would not return it to him. This is an important lesson for us, to think of our actions before we do them. What will it cost in the long run? What will the consequences of my action or inaction result for me in the long run?  Will I gain that which I gave up to have both what I want and the blessing of the Lord?  You and I are faced with decisions every day, and some of them might be the wrong decisions. But we never have to worry about the consequences if we carefully consider the direction of the Holy Spirit in all things. Let’s make sure that our conversation is such that no root of bitterness will spring up in us and defile our witness. Let’s make sure that our hearts reach out to all, full of the grace that is poured out on us. At the end of this discourse, the writer writes: “Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us hold on to grace. By it, we may serve God acceptably, with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire.” 12:28-29

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