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The Fatal Distraction–Section 7

Greg Cootsona's BlogGod’s Word is Important But…

In “Section 6” we looked at distractions that slowly creep in to replace love and compassion with head-knowledge and Godly motivation with that of man-centered traditions. In the final section, The Fatal Distraction-Section 7, we will look at how we can be victorious over the things that distract believers from fulfilling the “Great Commission” that Jesus as He departed to be with the Father. The command that Jesus gave us as believers is the difference between “heaven and hell” for those who have not heard the gospel. The focus for believers must be that of Holy Spirit empowered declaration in a world that is perishing as opposed to introverted pontification in religious machination as a rebellion against the world around us!

Recipe for Success

As we walk out our life in Christ Jesus we must never forget that God desires “Compassion not sacrifice”. God’s Word tells us in Hosea 6:6 “For I desired mercy, and not sacrifice; and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings.” and in 1 Samuel 15:22 “To obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed is better than the fat of rams.” The fact that God demonstrated His steadfast and merciful love for us, as we were dead in our sin but made alive through Christ Jesus, He also wants us to demonstrate that steadfast love and mercy to those who are perishing.

In order to insure that we do not become Pharisaical toward those who do not know Jesus we must always remember that we were sinners separated from God for eternity by our sin nature. It must never leave our conscience that apart from God’s gracious gift of His Son Jesus we would be hopeless, helpless, hedonists that are displeasing to God in every way. The apostle Paul said it best in Romans 7:24:25 “What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!”

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She Is!

She Is:

Warm and welcoming to everyone she meets, always displaying love an kindness.

Organic in the way she approaches life, blessing everyone with whom she comes in contact.

Noble in the way she managers her life, her household and all that she sets her hand to do.

Delicate as a flower in the spring or a snowflake in the winter but her strength of character is a bulwark for us all.

Elegant and graceful never acting inappropriately but always with charm and courtliness.

Refined and intelligent always choosing her words carefully and managing her thoughts with dignity and godliness.

Fascinating and awe inspiring causing everyone to take note though unassuming in all that she does.

Understanding and always willing to forgive and forget.

Loving and kind, never audacious but always caring more for others than for herself.


The Fatal Distraction–Section 6

Hazard Warning SignsGod’s Word is important But…

In The Warning Signs – Part 1 we looked at two of the warning signs. We gained perspective on how beginning to allow knowledge to influence how we view others will result in comparisons that lead to a Pharisaical state of mind toward others. We also looked at how knowledge can cause us to become arrogant and lose our compassion for those who are lost in their sin.

Today we’ll look at two more warning signs that are indicators of our perspective toward the “Great Commission”. We will explore how pious humility is really false humility while true humility is brokenness before God almighty. In addition, we will look at how a focus on churchy activities can draw our attention away from the plight of the lost.

The Warning Signs – Part 2

In Part 1 we focused on the parable of the two men in Luke 18:9-14 who went to the temple to pray. We will continue with that parable in Part 2. Luke 18:9-14 “And He also told this parable to some people who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and viewed others with contempt: ‘Two men went up into the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. “The Pharisee stood and was praying this to himself” ‘God I thank You that I am not like other people: swindlers, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week; I pay tithes of all that I get.  But the tax collector, standing some distance away, was even unwilling to lift up his eyes to heaven, but was beating his breast, saying, ‘God be merciful to me, the sinner! ’ I tell you, this man went to his house justified rather than the other; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but he who humbles himself will be exalted. ” Continue reading

The Fatal Distraction-Section 5

God’s Word is important, but…

In “The Fatal Distraction” Section 4 we covered the fatality, discovering that the fatality is not us but those around us with whom we do not share the good news of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Sometimes it is difficult to see the warning signs of the fatal distraction. Today, in Section 5, we’ll cover the first two warning signs that are clues of distraction. Here we will look at how we can recognize when we have begun to become Pharisaical in our perspective toward others. As we pursue our relationship with God we must always remember from where we have fallen and to where we have been restored and by whom we are offered the free gift of salvation that has nothing to do with our religious efforts. Now the “Warning Signs”.

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Freedom is Never Free

We are about to enter memorial day weekend. As I ponder the freedom that this great nation has provided I can’t help but remember the price that was paid by others in order for us to experience that freedom. I can’t help but silently pray, giving thanks to God Almighty because freedom is never free.

From our founding fathers who provided freedom from the tyranny of foreign rule to our revolutionary brothers who insured that all men would be free.

Freedom is never free.

From our grandfathers, fathers and those who fought to keep us free from the threat of fascism and communism to our brothers, sons and daughters who have fought and are still fighting to keep us safe and free from the fear of terrorism.

Freedom is never free.

For all who have sacrifice their freedom through loss of limb and injury I give honor and thanks.

Freedom is never free.

For all who have paid the ultimate sacrifice of death for the freedom of others I give honor and thanks.

Freedom is never free.

But the thing for which I am most grateful is spiritual freedom provided when the Son of God died in my place.

Freedom is never free.

As we go about a weekend and enjoy our family, our friends and our neighbors let us always remember!

Freedom is never free!

God Bless America!


The Fatal Distraction-Section 4

God’s Word is Important, But…

In Section 3 we covered “The Distraction” and looked at how easily we are entangled in things that seem important but do not further the gospel. Today, in “The Fatal Distaction-Section 4”, we’ll look at “The Fatality”  and try to understand who suffers the consequences when we become distracted with things that take our attention away from the “Great Commission”.

In Matthew 9:36-38 Jesus said; 36Seeing the people, He felt compassion for them, because they were distressed and dispirited like sheep without a shepherd. 37Then He said to His disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. 38Therefore beseech the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into His harvest.”

Jesus saw the people for what they were, spiritually broken. He told His disciples to ask the Lord of the harvest to “send out workers”. Notice, Jesus did not say build church buildings and programs. He did not say, study until you know everything in and about the Bible. He did not say share the gospel with your friends and relatives. He said; “..beseech the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into His harvest.” Why, because the world is full of people who are spiritually broken and don’t know what is wrong. Today we’ll discover how our religious pursuits, can become “Fatal Distractions”? Continue reading

The Fatal Distraction-Section 3

Leave a Reply Cancel replyGod’s Word is Important, But…

In Section 2 we looked at “Knowledge without Action is like Fireworks with No One to Watch” and how learning God’s Word without without taking action is like putting a bright lamp under a bushel basket. Today we’ll look at “The Fatal Distraction-Section 3”  and try to uncover how we, as believers, become distracted with things that are not an integral part of the ‘Great Commission”.

God tells un in Hebrews 4 that His Word is “sharper than any two edged sword” and that it “is able to judge the intentions of the heart.” While the intentions of our heart are key in performing God’s will, we cannot write off the commands that He has given us as His people in the “Great Commission”. We may not have the gift of evangelism but we are all clearly called to evangelize. We may not have the gift of preaching but we are all called to share the gospel with everyone around us. We may not be gifted by the Spirit as a prophet but we are called to be the “salt of the earth” and speak into a world of darkness the light of His Word.

If churchy activities distract us from doing the things just mentioned it is time to evaluate what is truly in our hearts. Are we pursuing righteousness through deeds of “good works” or are we pursuing the “Great Commission” as commanded by Jesus. Is our inclination to speak the truth of God’s Word or shrink back from the world of darkness? Are we bold in sharing the gospel or have we been caught up in “Fatal Distractions”?

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The Fatal Distraction–Section 2

God’s Word is Important, But…

In Section 1 we looked at “Information without Formation Leads to Spiritual Devastation” and how learning God’s Word without that learning translating into a changed heart leads to legalism and self-righteousness. In today’s installment of “The Fatal Distraction”  we’ll look into how studying God’s Word must prompt action or it is merely another churchy “check box”.

So many times I have taught studies from God’s Word things that profoundly changed my heart and forced me to take action based on what I had learned. But when the teaching time was over no one remembered from one week to the next what had been taught. The attitude of those who attended was one of “Bible Study”, “Check”! But in studying God’s Word, many times tears of joy follow tears of sorrow as I realized how short I have fallen but how God had provided a way for me to have eternal life in spite of my own sinful nature. God’s Word speaks clearly into my life by the power of His Holy Spirit. Each time I read and study God’s Word, things in my heart change. I truly understand what the prophet Jeremiah felt when he wrote Lamentations 3:22-23 “The Lord’s lovingkindnesses indeed never cease, For His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness.” So how is it that so many people can hear God’s Word taught clearly, but have no sense of responsibility to allow the Holy Spirit to work in their lives so as to result in action? Continue reading

The Fatal Distraction–Section 1

Distracted DrivingGod’s Word is Important, But…

Recently, I read a article about the church today. The article went into great detail about churches that are caught up in today’s feel-good mentality to the exclusion of God’s Word. The article went on to criticize up-beat music, topical preaching and a number of other things in a way that typifies a legalistic religious perspective. What do I mean by that statement?

The article focused on expository preaching and teaching as the only way that God’s Word should be taught with little emphasis on the “Great Commission”. I have observed the results of this mentality in a number of situations and from past experience I can say for sure that expository teaching can, and often does, lead to a legalistic view of others, deafness to God’s Word and an arrogant, elitist, isolationist lifestyle. Today’s ultra-conservative “evangelical” churches are, for the most part, not evangelical at all but monoliths of pharisaical activity that does not display the love of God to those who are perishing. Jesus was a master at calling those in darkness out of that darkness without condemning them but also without embracing the sin in which they were entangled. To do this Jesus relied on God’s Word in the power of the Holy Spirit exclusively. How many times in the gospels do we hear Jesus speak the phrases “Your sins are forgiven” or “Go and sin no more.”? Continue reading

How to Deal with Temptation

How to Deal with Temptation

Satan Uses Three Avenues!

Today we’ll look at how to deal with temptation. We’ll focus on the temptation of Jesus and how Satan used the same methods he used in the Garden of Eden to temp Jesus. How did Jesus handle the same kind of temptations that caused Adam and Eve to fall into sin? Continue reading