A lot of people could have improved their spiritual life had they chosen to. Many lost to suffering, temptation, and trial because they did not take advantage of their power of choice. Remember, there is always the choice.
1 Samuel 23:10-14 “Then said David, O Lord God of Israel, thy servant hath certainly heard that Saul seeketh to come to Keilah, to destroy the city for my sake. Will the men of Keilah deliver me up into his hand? will Saul come down, as thy servant hath heard? O Lord God of Israel, I beseech thee, tell thy servant. And the Lord said, He will come down. Then said David, Will the men of Keilah deliver me and my men into the hand of Saul? And the Lord said, They will deliver thee up. Then David and his men, which were about six hundred, arose and departed out of Keilah, and went whithersoever they could go. And it was told Saul that David was escaped from Keilah; and he forbare to go forth. And David abode in the wilderness in strong holds, and remastrongholdsuntain in the wilderness of Ziph. And Saul sought him every day, but God delivered him not into his hand.”
In this passage, David chose to either stay and die or to leave and survive.
If Noah were not righteous, the whole world would have drowned. The world changed because of one man.
The war between Palestine and Israel happens today because of one man’s choice– Abraham married Hagar who gave birth to Ishmael.
Why is anyone able to go to heaven? Because of the son of God who chose to come and die for the world.
Why do we have Roman Catholicism? Because of Constantine’s decision.
Why is the British empire so strong and able to spread the English language and colonialism? Because of the queen.
Why did the Holocaust happen? Because millions followed the blind deception of one man’s tongue.
Why are there so few Bible-believing churches? Because of the wicked generation that is discontent with their parents.
What if pastor Gene Kim gave in to his trials?
There was a study done about the correlation of willpower in toddlers (refraining from eating marshmallows) with later success in life. Willpower is important.
Romans 7:18-20: “For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not. For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do. Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.”
One cannot allow the flesh to make the decisions. Everyone has the power of choice and willpower within them. If willpower is not practiced, temptations will conquer, and suffering will overcome that person. They will miss out on blessings.
Everyone has the power to hurdle it. But some give up.
1 Corinthians 10:13: “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.”
The one thing which God will not overpower is one’s free will. Calvinism teaches that humans have no free will because God is sovereign over all things. Everyone needs to be accountable for their sin. No one can get away with their sin.
God is not a Calvinist – “Oh God, I cannot overcome this temptation. It’s because you didn’t help me.” Don’t sit and wait for God to do something. That’s the wrong mindset. People are not robots, and God does not force anyone. God does not like a forced offering but cheerful giving.
In psychology, people blame the environment around them, but who makes the final choice? It’s the self! Don’t blame it on the excuse, “It’s because my parents raised me this way.” The individual has the final choice. One can’t simply blame them for the misery. Everyone is responsible to make the right decision.
Everything will remain as it was yesterday if one doesn’t make a choice to change.
No one is responsible for the things in their lives except them. Everyone will have to give an account of their lives to God. Everyone must look at their life – where they are today. Before blaming it on busyness, resources, family, church, character, and so on, they must see if it is, in fact, their fault. One has to face this wicked world on one’s own without fellowship, church, or pastor – decide to stand for Jesus Christ.
2 Timothy 2:26: “And that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will.”
If one is not careful, Satan will capture their will. Because they lived their lives giving up their free choice, Satan has a foothold. The opposite is also true. If one constantly submits their willpower to God, one will naturally make the right choice. One or the other will become the master of each person’s life.
2 Corinthians 8:5: “And this they did, not as we hoped, but first gave their own selves to the Lord, and unto us by the will of God.”
One needs to give themselves to the Lord constantly.
Deuteronomy 30:19: “I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live.”
Will it be death or life? Will it be blessing or cursing? What will be the choice?