[bibletalk] Consider Your Ways

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From: Steve Preston <fpccpreston@...>
Date: Wed, 16 Jan 2008 03:59:11 -0800 (PST)
Consider Your Ways 

One of the most frequent warnings throughout the Bible is to give 
thought to or consider what you are doing. The prophet Haggai puts it 
this way: “Thus saith the LORD of hosts; Consider your ways” (Haggai 1:7). We 
are to be on constant watch lest sin enter into our lives. Let us look at some 
of the other passages and notice just how often God’s people are told to take 
heed or to consider their ways. 

After Moses led the children of Israel out of Egypt, God told Moses to 
“set bounds unto the people round about” (Exodus 19:12). In the same verse God 
warned the people to “Take heed to yourselves, that ye go not up into the mount, 
or touch the border of it: whosoever toucheth the mount shall be surely put to death.” No 
matter how much the people wanted to go up on the mountain, the Father gives 
clear warning for them not to. They were to watch out for themselves so as not 
to transgress the commandment of the Lord. Later, after Joshua led the Israelites 
in the taking of the promised land, the Reubenites, and the Gadites, and the half 
tribe of Manasseh were ready to go back to the land God promised them for an 
inheritance. Their land was on the opposite side of the Jordan River, far away from 
the remaining tribes. As a consequence, Joshua charged them to “take diligent 
heed to do the commandment and the law” (Joshua 22:5). Notice that Joshua tells them 
to “take diligent heed”. Could it be because they would be separated from their 
brethren and away from the tabernacle? 

In Proverbs 21:12, we are told that the “righteous man wisely considereth the house 
of the wicked”. So it is clear that not only are we to consider our own ways but also 
the ways of the wicked. It is possible to learn something good from the unrighteous. 
We learn what not to do if our God is to be pleased with our lives. Proverbs 23:1 
warns us to consider what is before us when eating with rulers. People in power 
tend to think they do not need God. They think that life is theirs for the taking. 
But God says watch out for them. Perhaps this is what was on Daniel’s mind in 
Daniel 1:8 when he refused the good food of the King of Babylon. 

The warnings were just as numerous in the New Testament also. Jesus taught 
that we are to “take heed that ye do not your alms before men, to be seen of them” (Matt. 6:1). 
Our Saviour was warning us against doing charitable deeds just so others would notice 
us. We are to do good because it is right not to gain praise from men. In Mark 13:5 
Jesus admonishes us to “Take heed lest any man deceive you.” This warning is just as 
valid today as it was then. Many men and women hold themselves up to be something 
special with God (such as the Pope, or Billy Graham) and teach things that lead people 
away from heaven. It is therefore important that we be like the Bereans in Acts 17:11 
because they “searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.” 

No matter what a person might say is true, if it is not found in the Bible, then the 
statement is false. Romans 11:21 warns us to “take heed lest he also spare not thee.” 
This warning came after the apostle Paul taught about God punishing the Israelites 
for their unbelief. That is, if God did not spare those who were termed the chosen 
people, what makes us think He will not also punish us for our sin? We are even to 
consider ourselves when trying to help someone out of sin. Galatians 6:1 states 
“…ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, 
lest thou also be tempted.” 

Do you see how important it is to consider, or take heed, to yourself? It is 
quite possible that a child of God can fall away from righteous living being overtaken 
in sin. It is also possible that others will try to deceive the faithful in order to draw 
them away from God. Whether sincere or not, those who teach what is not in the 
Bible are wrong and are to be avoided. God is the source of good things and His 
word is what should be heeded. 

In Christ, Steve Preston

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