warning

Whose Water Are You Drinking?

The Bible is anything but boring. It's filled with stories that rival the pop sci-fi, action, adventure, and mystery books and movies of today. Some Scripture is graphic with both sexual and violent encounters that would require ratings for "mature audiences only" if put on a TV or movie screen.

The blunt and honest account of many stories, poetry, and prose found in the Bible confound many. The depravity of people is not sugar-coated. There's no spiritual spin on God's part.

Honor and Respect

How would you describe respect? Three different types of respect come to mind for me.

Probably the most common one could be termed surface respect—it's shallow as the term implies. It's shown when the boss comes around or when trying to impress someone of importance.

Some respect is born out of sheer fear, dread, or fearfulness. It's an anxious fear that tends to cause people to flee or freeze up.

Wise Counsel

How can anyone resist the pull of peer pressure? It's easy to say, "If you don't stand for something, you'll fall for anything!" But resisting the influence of others is often not so easy.

At times, the forcefulness of other people intimidates us. Some people sound so convincing when they present an opportunity or plan as an adventure or a sure bet that we need to get in on.

Worship Is Better than Whining

Several hymns and worship songs are taken directly from this psalm. Although it begins with an uplifting invitation, it ends with a solemn reminder. It begins with encouragement and ends with a warning.

A simple truth is embedded in this psalm that is easily missed. You've heard of selective memory but we can also be selective in what we hear or read.

A Warning and a Blessing

We all make judgment calls. No one wants to be judged and I doubt anyone wants to be known as a judgmental person. But there are times when a judgment call is appropriate.

When it is obvious that certain people are harmful and cause problems, it's appropriate to warn others about them. This is what Paul does here, but notice it's not done with vindictiveness or malice. This is the responsibility of a leader, especially a pastor or elder in the church.

Slander is not okay, but just as a parent warns a child about some danger or dangerous person, pastoral leaders need to warn those under their care.