Papa Joe’s Solid Ground
“A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.” (Proverbs 17:17)
“A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.” (Proverbs 18:24)
Webster’s defines loyalty as, “Faithful in allegiance to one’s lawful government, … faithful to a private person to whom fidelity is held to be due, … faithful to a cause, ideal or custom.” Essentially loyalty means the same as faithfulness.
Honest examination of the world today, especially the modern nations of Israel, reveals that loyalty is not being taught to the young like it used to be. Ask young people today if they would be willing to die for the ideals and principles of their country. A common reply is likely to be, “Why would I? What has this country ever done for me?” The truth is only a small number of Nathan Hale-types remain in this world. Nathan Hale was the 20-something U.S. patriot who, as he was being hanged for spying on British troops, said, “I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country.” Such a statement would be exceedingly rare today.
How many young people are deeply loyal to their parents, teachers, families and schools? How many are being taught to be loyal to God, His purposes, laws and way of life? “Many a man proclaims his own steadfast love, but a faithful [loyal] man who can find?” lamented Solomon in Proverbs 20:6 (English Standard Version). The absence of loyalty was a problem in Solomon’s time. It is still a problem today. Why? Loyalty or faithfulness is difficult to teach human beings because we are naturally selfish, self-centered pleasure-seekers. Remember, loyalty is equal to faithfulness. No child wakes up in the morning deciding to be faithful. He must be taught to be. Loyalty is best taught within the structure of the family.
Jesus Christ set us the perfect example of unfaltering loyalty. Never once was He disloyal to the Father. Jesus Christ always exalted God. In fact, He stated that His purpose in life was to declare His Father (John 1:18). Jesus Christ put His Father first in everything. He humbled Himself before God—even gave up His own divinity—to fulfill His Father’s will (John 17:4-5; Philippians 2:5-8). This is the first and most important building block of loyalty.
Imagine for a moment that God was disloyal to us, His Church. How devastating would that be? What if God told us that He was only kidding about Jesus Christ’s return and the resurrection? What if He said, I didn’t tell you the truth about being “born again”? Who could trust a God like that? God is faithful in His word, He can never lie to us (Hebrews 6:18). God’s faithfulness gives us hope and the encouragement to press on in our Christian fight against Satan, his evil world and our flawed human nature. (Article in part by Dennis Leap)
Men, this article came to my attention as my church, along with many others, is engaging in the battle under the attack of the enemy. Satan always weasels his way in looking for any crack in the armament he can find. We have been teaching, and preaching for years now the battle tactics of the enemy, and if allowed to enter the ranks in our leadership what the end result would be. He does that by introducing confusion, miscommunication, doubt, and fear just to mention a few weapons in his arsenal. Our only defense on any of this is Gods Holy Spirit that gives us discernment , conviction, and power over the enemy. He equips us with His armament, (Ephesians 6), which includes the only weapon we have for offense, the word of God. He will turn brother against brother, sister against sister in an attempt to destroy what is more than likely being very effective against him. If not he wouldn’t bother with us!
Men ,this is another tactic of the enemy that can cause great destruction. Always check with the word of God for Biblical solutions for any decisions you make, and always consult the leadership of the church you are attending. If it is contrary to the word of God it needs to be confronted. If it is in line with God’s word, then trust your leadership and be loyal to them. Remember always that the church is a collection of men whom are imperfect and are going to make mistakes. May God’s grace be ministered to all who serve Him.
“Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they keep watch over your souls as those who will give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with grief, for this would be unprofitable for you.” (Hebrews 13:17)
Satan has no power over us, the body of Christ, unless through sin we give it to him, (Luke 10:19). Disobedience to God’s word will bring penalty, while obedience to God’s word will bring abundant blessings. Stay the course, be bold and courageous; “Stand-Up…Step-Out…Be Counted For The Kingdom!”
“Complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind.” (Philippians 2:2)
“Finally, all of you, have unity of mind, sympathy, brotherly love, a tender heart, and a humble mind. (1 Peter 3:8)
“I appeal to you, brothers, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be united in the same mind and the same judgment.” (1 Corinthians 1:10)
Seek the Adventure, Strength and Honor, Papa Joe!