Monthly Archives: December 2015

Is coveting the worst sin?

“You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, nor his male servant, nor his female servant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that is your neighbor’s.” – Exodus 20:17

‘You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife; and you shall not desire your neighbor’s house, his field, his male servant, his female servant, his ox, his donkey, or anything that is your neighbor’s.’ – Deuteronomy 5:21

Lately, I have spent more and more time meditating on why “coveting” is so bad in the eyes of YHWH.  One of the ten commandments is you shall not covet.  Seemingly this idea of coveting is much lesser than some of the other commandments, such as murdering someone.   So what does “covet” actually mean?

covet – to want (something that you do not have) very much
to desire (what belongs to another) inordinately or culpably

Notice how Scripture defines what not to do regarding the idea of coveting.  Do not desire anything that is essentially, not ours.  This is a major problem in society today. Essentially our entire culture is constructed upon the idea “getting that next conquest” whatever that might be.  Marketing continually bombards our lives and minds with the message, “Your life is incomplete without this possession, skill, talent, gift, relationship, status, idea, etc.”

Coveting in a very real sense is the first sin.  Eve and then Adam desired that which was not meant for them.  Take a look at Genesis 3.

So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate. Genesis 3:6

Through out the beginning of Genesis 3 we see satan at work “marketing” the Tree of the knowledge of good and evil.  Focusing on deceiving Eve, he then gets Adam.  Eve was deceived, she ate of the fruit because it was desirable to her.  Adam then ate the fruit not because he was deceived, but because he knew without eating of the fruit, separation would ever be between Eve and himself.    Adam desired Eve – coveting her over YHWH and His Word.  Satan twists and lies about the reality of the Tree, specifically the ramifications of what will happen once they part-take.

And they heard the sound of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God among the trees of the garden. Genesis 3:8 NKJV

What was their response to this new fallen state?  Adam and Eve hid themselves from the presence of the Creator of heaven and earth.  This is the problem of humanity.  We all hide ourselves from God because of our sin.  Yet, the presence of the LORD is what brings victory over satan, sin and darkness.

Looking at Exodus we see how the one thing Moses desired from YHWH was, His Presence.

And He said, “My Presence will go [with you], and I will give you rest.” 15 Then he said to Him, “If Your Presence does not go [with us], do not bring us up from here. Exodus 33:14-15 NKJV

God’s presence slays giants.  God’s presence takes out every work of the evil one.  His presence is the answer to our lives and victory in the earth.  Joshua and the Israelite’s crushed all the giants because the presence of the LORD went before them.  Whatever is going on in our lives at any given moment, inviting God into that situation will completely disarm any work of darkness.

 “And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. 20 “For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. 21 “But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God.” – John 3:19-21 NKJV

There are several reasons why we do not want an ounce of coveting in our lives, here are just a few.

  1. Coveting leads to bigger levels of sin. When we act upon wrong desire the door for increased pain and suffering opens wider and wider.  War, stealing, murder, adultery and divorce spawn from the sin of covetousness.

James chapter 4 communicates this reality perfectly, take a look.

Where do wars and fights [come] from among you? Do [they] not [come] from your [desires for] pleasure that war in your members? 2 You lust and do not have. You murder and covet and cannot obtain. You fight and war. Yet you do not have because you do not ask. 3 You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend [it] on your pleasures. 4 Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. 5 Or do you think that the Scripture says in vain, “The Spirit who dwells in us yearns jealously”?[James 4:1-5 NKJV]

  1. Coveting reveals an ungrateful, unthankful and unappreciative heart. Rather than focusing on all the blessings YHWH has provided to us, we focus on our lack.  We focus on what we do not have.

Adam and Eve had everything they could ever need or want.  They had all the power in the Garden, they were in charge.  They had the best status – dominion and stewardship over the earth.  This couple possessed everything.  Adam and Eve had all the wealth they could possibly desire.  Their work did not even make them break a sweat, it was easy.  On top of position and possession, they had the presence of the Most High.  Satan turned their attention from what they had, to what they did not.  Some how they bought into the lie that what they had was not good and God was some how holding out on them.  They became unappreciative and discontent.

“But love your enemies, do good, and lend, hoping for nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High. For He is kind to the unthankful and evil. – Luke 6:35 NKJV

Notice how in Luke, unthankfulness is associated with being an evil thing.

We need to be a people of thanksgiving, gratitude and appreciation. God is good. He is working so everything that occurs in our lives is working out for our own good.

Enter into His gates with thanksgiving, [And] into His courts with praise. Be thankful to Him, [and] bless His name. 5 For the LORD [is] good; His mercy [is] everlasting, And His truth [endures] to all generations. Psalms 100:4-5 NKJV

And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to [His] purpose. – Romans 8:28 NKJV

  1. Coveting calls YHWH a liar.  It says to Him, “God, You’re not trustworthy. I don’t believe what You tell me is true.  I don’t believe the things that are currently a part of my life or not a part of my life, are actually for my own good.”

God jealously desires us.  Yet we go after the things of the world – position, power, or material possessions.  Somehow satan continues to feed us the same lie over and over, generation after generation.

Coveting says, “The grass is greener on the other side of the fence.”  Satan wants us to jump the fence, again and again – in search of the “greenest.” Dis-contentedness and covetousness go hand in hand.  If we are discontent we can bet covetousness is taking place.  The truth is, the grass is not greener, it is simply a different color.  The search is real, but what are we searching for?  Are we searching for Jesus or the most money in the bank, the most power on the planet, the most attractive spouse, etc.?

Paul understood this well.  He was fully contented in the manifest presence of the Holy Spirit.  He knew that all of his life was in the hands of the Creator to such a degree he could make this statement:

Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content: 12 I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. 13 I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. – Philippians 4:11-13 NKJV

Conclusion

If we trust our current reality – relationships, resources, position to the Most High, there’s no room for sin to expand within our hearts and lives.  God is good and is worthy to be trusted with all of life’s details.  We can trust Him implicitly.  Our responsibility is simple:

“But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. – Matthew 6:33 NKJV

His Word promises:

Delight yourself also in the LORD, And He shall give you the desires of your heart. – Psalms 37:4 NKJV

Prayer

Father in Heaven, You are trustworthy.  You are good.  Thank You for all that is transpiring in the earth right now over and around my life.  Thank You for the relationships in my life.  Thank you for the relationships that are not in my life. Thank You for my daily bread.  Thank You that everything transpiring in my life is according to Your perfect will.  Be magnified today YHWH.  Thank You for Your peace, rest and contentment.  Most of all thank You for the presence of the Holy Spirit residing within me this day because Jesus Christ died on the cross for my sins and rose on the 3rd day to save me from death and sin.  I also ask that the sin of covetousness be cast down from the hearts of man.  I ask that hearts of gratitude and thanksgiving arise in the hearts of man today, more and more and more. Lastly Lord, I do not want anything that is not mine.  I only want what You have for me.  I gladly receive all that You have for me.  I trust You.  I repent for any time I have wanted something that is not mine and that you do not have for me.  Let everyone be blessed fully with what You have given to them.  Thank You for your generosity upon their lives.  I celebrate Your goodness upon the people around me.  Bless my friends, bless my family, bless my acquaintances, and bless those that say bad things about me.  Thank You! In the name of Jesus Christ I pray. Amen.

Let’s stop playing the college student debt game

If you’re thinking about going to college, watch the college conspiracy student loan debt full documentary first. Something to consider before getting into debt and going this route for an education.

Are we being taught to think or are we being brainwashed? Yes, brainwashed. What’s going on in a nation where people go to an institution with the promise of a “good job” on the other side of the cash outlay? Our families are being burdened with a debt load that’s not able to be paid back in any reasonable amount of time.

Why are we being trained to think a “job” is the American dream? Nobody will ever be able to create wealth in this debt system. Can we see the writing on the wall? Can we see what’s actually going on here? How many people do you know that are money literate? How many wealthy people do you know? If, by chance you do know someone who is wealthy, do they have a good job? I doubt they have a “job.” I bet they are the job provider. It’s time to own the “latter” as Robert Kiyosaki says in Rich Dad, Poor Dad.

When we wake up to the realities taking place surrounding the idea of the university, college school system we’ll begin to regain the ideas of what this nation was founded on – hard work, ingenuity, problem solving and so on.

This system and mindset simply creates a “borrow” mentality – a liability mentality. It’s time to stop playing the debt game and begin becoming “money literate.” Right out of high school the system preys upon the youth. Get a credit card, take out student loans, car loans and then get a house “mort”gage (death) loan. What are we doing? The Bible teaches about good money principles that are not being implemented and thus people are being taken advantage of through usury and this debt based system.

[Proverbs 22:7 NIV] 7 The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is slave to the lender.[NKJV] 7 The rich rules over the poor, And the borrower is servant to the lender.
[ NASB] 7 The rich rules over the poor,And the borrower becomes the lender’s slave.

How many slaves do we have in this country?  I wager more than we have ever had in all of history.

Anyone who returns to the fundamentals of money and is able to become educated without spending thousands of dollars, wealth and “asset” creation will become possible easier and faster.

Parents, let’s become educated and then educate our children. The name of the game is not getting a “good job.” It’s biblical understanding about money and education without taking on bad debt loads.

Father in Heaven, please let your people wake up to the problems of debt and this education style via the college institution format. We need break through in mindsets and how to better serve the children of the future generation. Thank You for your Kingdom principles regarding money. Come Holy Spirit and breath on Your people. In Y’shua’s name. amen.

“I’m not hurting anyone, what’s the problem?”

promiseland

Collective sin affects me… the sins of a generation has consequence. Your sin affects me and you’re not even touching me. The dangerous affects of generational sin.
Have you ever heard anyone say something along these lines?

“It’s okay to do (fill in the blank), if you don’t hurt anyone else.”

“It’s okay, I’m not hurting anyone else.”

“I’m not hurting anyone, what’s the problem? We should be free to do this, that or the other thing.”

Such statements are far too common in this generation, it’s sad. Fundamentally, such ideas fly in the face of the Bible. How you might be asking?

Jesus gave us two commandments that embody all the commandments of the Bible.

30 ‘And you shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ This [is] the first commandment. 31 “And the second, like [it, is] this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” – Mark 12:30-31 NKJV

Notice the second commandment: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”

hug-love-your-neighbor

Now if we love someone, it would suggest we do him or her no harm. Notice how we are to love our neighbor, as our self. The 2nd commandment would insinuate that we would understand how to rightly love our self. It is implied that we would do no harm to ourselves.

A couple topics where people use such statements are in the legalization of drug use and any “open” sexual relationship. These are only a couple examples of rebellion to the Lord. God provided the Bible, His Word because He loves humans. He wants us to experience His pure definition of love, that does no harm to others and ourselves. People often want to justify various actions and come up with statements that sound really good. Sadly, there are consequences to such actions that do in fact affect those around you – friend and stranger alike. People involved in any kind of sin that seemingly does not affect anyone else, does in fact impact all of society adversely.

“What do you mean? How does smoking marijuana or fornicating affect all of society adversely?”

Here’s an example of how collective sin affects others and brings consequence upon an entire nation, even those who did nothing wrong. In the book of Numbers Moses sends 12 spies into the Promiseland to spy it out and bring a report back as to what is currently taking place in the land of Canaan. Let’s take a closer look…

26 Now they departed and came back to Moses and Aaron and all the congregation of the children of Israel in the Wilderness of Paran, at Kadesh; they brought back word to them and to all the congregation, and showed them the fruit of the land. 27 Then they told him, and said: “We went to the land where you sent us. It truly flows with milk and honey, and this [is] its fruit. 28 “Nevertheless the people who dwell in the land [are] strong; the cities [are] fortified [and] very large; moreover we saw the descendants of Anak there. 29 “The Amalekites dwell in the land of the South; the Hittites, the Jebusites, and the Amorites dwell in the mountains; and the Canaanites dwell by the sea and along the banks of the Jordan.” 30 Then Caleb quieted the people before Moses, and said, “Let us go up at once and take possession, for we are well able to overcome it.” 31 But the men who had gone up with him said, “We are not able to go up against the people, for they [are] stronger than we.” 32 And they gave the children of Israel a bad report of the land which they had spied out, saying, “The land through which we have gone as spies [is] a land that devours its inhabitants, and all the people whom we saw in it [are] men of [great] stature. 33 “There we saw the giants (the descendants of Anak came from the giants); and we were like grasshoppers in our own sight, and so we were in their sight.” Numbers 13:26-33 NKJV
1 So all the congregation lifted up their voices and cried, and the people wept that night. 2 And all the children of Israel complained against Moses and Aaron, and the whole congregation said to them, “If only we had died in the land of Egypt! Or if only we had died in this wilderness! 3 “Why has the LORD brought us to this land to fall by the sword, that our wives and children should become victims? Would it not be better for us to return to Egypt?” 4 So they said to one another, “Let us select a leader and return to Egypt.” 5 Then Moses and Aaron fell on their faces before all the assembly of the congregation of the children of Israel. 6 But Joshua the son of Nun and Caleb the son of Jephunneh, [who were] among those who had spied out the land, tore their clothes; 7 and they spoke to all the congregation of the children of Israel, saying: “The land we passed through to spy out [is] an exceedingly good land. 8 “If the LORD delights in us, then He will bring us into this land and give it to us, ‘a land which flows with milk and honey.’ 9 “Only do not rebel against the LORD, nor fear the people of the land, for they [are] our bread; their protection has departed from them, and the LORD [is] with us. Do not fear them.” 10 And all the congregation said to stone them with stones. Now the glory of the LORD appeared in the tabernacle of meeting before all the children of Israel. 11 Then the LORD said to Moses: “How long will these people reject Me? And how long will they not believe Me, with all the signs which I have performed among them? 12 “I will strike them with the pestilence and disinherit them, and I will make of you a nation greater and mightier than they.”

13 And Moses said to the LORD: “Then the Egyptians will hear [it], for by Your might You brought these people up from among them, 14 “and they will tell [it] to the inhabitants of this land. They have heard that You, LORD, [are] among these people; that You, LORD, are seen face to face and Your cloud stands above them, and You go before them in a pillar of cloud by day and in a pillar of fire by night. 15 “Now [if] You kill these people as one man, then the nations which have heard of Your fame will speak, saying, 16 ‘Because the LORD was not able to bring this people to the land which He swore to give them, therefore He killed them in the wilderness.’ 17 “And now, I pray, let the power of my Lord be great, just as You have spoken, saying, 18 ‘The LORD is longsuffering and abundant in mercy, forgiving iniquity and transgression; but He by no means clears [the guilty], visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and fourth [generation].’ 19 “Pardon the iniquity of this people, I pray, according to the greatness of Your mercy, just as You have forgiven this people, from Egypt even until now.”

20 Then the LORD said: “I have pardoned, according to your word; 21 “but truly, as I live, all the earth shall be filled with the glory of the LORD– 22 “because all these men who have seen My glory and the signs which I did in Egypt and in the wilderness, and have put Me to the test now these ten times, and have not heeded My voice, 23 “they certainly shall not see the land of which I swore to their fathers, nor shall any of those who rejected Me see it. 24 “But My servant Caleb, because he has a different spirit in him and has followed Me fully, I will bring into the land where he went, and his descendants shall inherit it.

25 “Now the Amalekites and the Canaanites dwell in the valley; tomorrow turn and move out into the wilderness by the Way of the Red Sea.” 26 And the LORD spoke to Moses and Aaron, saying, 27 “How long [shall I bear with] this evil congregation who complain against Me? I have heard the complaints which the children of Israel make against Me.

28 “Say to them, ‘As I live,’ says the LORD, ‘just as you have spoken in My hearing, so I will do to you: 29 ‘The carcasses of you who have complained against Me shall fall in this wilderness, all of you who were numbered, according to your entire number, from twenty years old and above. 30 ‘Except for Caleb the son of Jephunneh and Joshua the son of Nun, you shall by no means enter the land which I swore I would make you dwell in. 31 ‘But your little ones, whom you said would be victims, I will bring in, and they shall know the land which you have despised. 32 ‘But [as for] you, your carcasses shall fall in this wilderness.

33 ‘And your sons shall be shepherds in the wilderness forty years, and bear the brunt of your infidelity, until your carcasses are consumed in the wilderness. 34 ‘According to the number of the days in which you spied out the land, forty days, for each day you shall bear your guilt one year, [namely] forty years, and you shall know My rejection. 35 ‘I the LORD have spoken this. I will surely do so to all this evil congregation who are gathered together against Me. In this wilderness they shall be consumed, and there they shall die.’ ”

36 Now the men whom Moses sent to spy out the land, who returned and made all the congregation complain against him by bringing a bad report of the land, 37 those very men who brought the evil report about the land, died by the plague before the LORD. 38 But Joshua the son of Nun and Caleb the son of Jephunneh remained alive, of the men who went to spy out the land. 39 Then Moses told these words to all the children of Israel, and the people mourned greatly. 40 And they rose early in the morning and went up to the top of the mountain, saying, “Here we are, and we will go up to the place which the LORD has promised, for we have sinned!” 41 And Moses said, “Now why do you transgress the command of the LORD? For this will not succeed. 42 “Do not go up, lest you be defeated by your enemies, for the LORD [is] not among you. 43 “For the Amalekites and the Canaanites [are] there before you, and you shall fall by the sword; because you have turned away from the LORD, the LORD will not be with you.” 44 But they presumed to go up to the mountaintop. Nevertheless, neither the ark of the covenant of the LORD nor Moses departed from the camp. 45 Then the Amalekites and the Canaanites who dwelt in that mountain came down and attacked them, and drove them back as far as Hormah. – Numbers 14:1-45 NKJV

There’s so much going on in these two chapters. Read this passage two or three times perhaps to really let what’s transpiring sink in.

The children of Israel sinned in several ways:

1. They complained
2. They rebelled
3. They feared
4. They communicated unbelief
5. They put God to the test 10 times

Amazing! God delivered Israel out of the hands of the Egyptians by parting the Red Sea. They lacked the faith in God that He will also make good on His promise to give them the land flowing with milk and honey.

I wonder how often we do this in our own lives? God has big promises for us, but we complain, doubt and get scared – rather than believing in faith that He is BIG and can handle it.

God wanted to completely wipe this people out, but Moses interceded on behalf of the people. The Lord responded to Moses’ prayer and chose not to wipe them all out. Yet because of the collective sin everyone was punished. The 10 spies who gave a bad report were killed with a plague seemingly immediately. The rest of the congregation of the age 20 and older were set to wander the wilderness a year for every day they spied out the land – dyeing sometime within that 40 year window failing to enter the Promise Land.

Joshua and Caleb, did nothing wrong. These two were still punished for the sin of the collective group of Israel. Rather than entering right into the Promise Land, these two had to serve a “prison sentence” of sorts wandering 40 years in the wilderness. Joshua and Caleb were not killed, as all their peers. Bummer, it’s not a fun thing to receive a guilty sentence and be completely innocent.

The story of spying out the land is one example of how individual sin affects the collective group. Different types of sin bring about different types of punishment. As the sin of the collective grows, so does the punishment and judgment.

These statements are deceptive lies from the pit of hell.

“It’s okay to do (fill in the blank), if you don’t hurt anyone else.”

“It’s okay, I’m not hurting anyone else.”

“I’m not hurting anyone, what’s the problem? We should be free to do this, that or the other thing.”

The truth is, it’s not okay to participate in sin of any kind. The truth is those who are participating in sin are not only hurting themselves, but also hurting those who are innocent. It will harm you and does offer consequence to those around you. Even a sin that becomes “legalized” through civil law – if it goes against the Word of God, there will be punishment and consequence. For those participating in sin, such actions will directly and adversely affect those who are not guilty of participating in a particular sin.

Conversely, collective righteousness brings about the blessing of the Lord. If the collective group is living righteously, then there’s no 40 year sentence to the wilderness, there’s no death. Simply believe God and enter into the Promise Land now. Receive all His benefits and blessings today! His hand will bring forth prosperity of soul in all of life. Let’s pursue His life through obedience to His Word because that’s how we express our love to Him and to each other.

Deuteronomy paints a picture of this reality.

1 If you fully obey the LORD your God and carefully follow all his commands I give you today, the LORD your God will set you high above all the nations on earth. 2 All these blessings will come on you and accompany you if you obey the LORD your God: 3 You will be blessed in the city and blessed in the country. 4 The fruit of your womb will be blessed, and the crops of your land and the young of your livestock–the calves of your herds and the lambs of your flocks. 5 Your basket and your kneading trough will be blessed. 6 You will be blessed when you come in and blessed when you go out. 7 The LORD will grant that the enemies who rise up against you will be defeated before you. They will come at you from one direction but flee from you in seven. … 9 The LORD will establish you as his holy people, as he promised you on oath, if you keep the commands of the LORD your God and walk in obedience to him. 10 Then all the peoples on earth will see that you are called by the name of the LORD, and they will fear you. … 12 The LORD will open the heavens, the storehouse of his bounty, to send rain on your land in season and to bless all the work of your hands. You will lend to many nations but will borrow from none. 13 The LORD will make you the head, not the tail. If you pay attention to the commands of the LORD your God that I give you this day and carefully follow them, you will always be at the top, never at the bottom. 14 Do not turn aside from any of the commands I give you today, to the right or to the left, following other gods and serving them. – Deuteronomy 28:1-7, 9-10, 12-14 NIV

Here’s a couple verses about how to love others and what love looks like:

15 “If you love Me, keep My commandments. – John 14:15 NKJV

44 “But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, – Matthew 5:44 NKJV

4 Love suffers long [and] is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; 5 does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; 6 does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; 7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. – 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 NKJV

4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. – 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 NIV