Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘‘Christian’ Karma’ Category

Say ye to the righteous, that it shall be well with them: for they shall eat the fruit of their actions. Woe to the wicked! It will go badly with him, For what he deserves will be done to him.
Isaiah 3:11

I have run across a lot of people who do not have a very good grip on what it means to be “righteous.” Even if they do not mean to, they start defining it the way a Pharisee might define righteous—which is to say that they tend to define it by what it is not. The righteous don’t do this and the wouldn’t do that.

Here is what the righteous do: They fear God. That is pretty much it. Cause and effect that enters into working that out, of course. People with a healthy respect for God will depart from evil and walk in the ways of God.

Rules that are legislated by men do not define righteousness. That is evident simply by looking at the way men reward men. How often have you been paid what you are worth? Look at people who get paid enormous salaries; do they do proportionally more work than you do? Is there really that much greater value in being able hit a ball toward a target than there is in the mother who teaches her child right from wrong? She gets little respect and no pay while professional sports stars get both, and extra privileges to boot.

A righteous person fears God. A wicked person does not. A wicked person thinks he can ignore what God says. A wicked person will lie because they have no respect for what God values.

What he has deserved he shall get. He shall be paid that for which he has laboured, and his reward shall be in proportion to his work. O, what a lot is that of the wicked! Cursed in time, and accursed through eternity!

Clarke, Adam. “Commentary on Isaiah 3”. “The Adam Clarke Commentary”. . 1832.
Advertisements

Read Full Post »

Say ye to the righteous, that it shall be well with them: for they shall eat the fruit of their actions. Woe to the wicked! It will go badly with him, For what he deserves will be done to him.
Isaiah 3:11

I have run across a lot of people who do not have a very good grip on what it means to be “righteous.” Even if they do not mean to, they start defining it the way a Pharisee might define righteous—which is to say that they tend to define it by what it is not—the righteous don’t do this and they wouldn’t do that.

Here is what the righteous do: They fear God. That is pretty much it. There is some cause and effect that enters into it, of course. People with a healthy respect for God will depart from evil and walk in the ways of God.

Rules that are legislated by men do not define righteousness. That is evident simply by looking at the way men reward men. How often have you been paid what you are worth? Look at people who get paid enormous salaries; do they do proportionally more work than you do? Is there really that much greater value in being able hit a ball toward a target than there is in the mother who teaches her child right from wrong? She gets little respect and no pay while professional sports stars get both, and extra privileges to boot.

A righteous person fears God. A wicked person does not. A wicked person thinks he can ignore what God says. A wicked person will lie because they have no respect for what God values.

The Message says it this way:
Reassure the righteous that their good living will pay off. But doom to the wicked! Disaster! Everything they did will be done to them.

The old timers said it like this:

What he has deserved he shall get. He shall be paid that for which he has laboured, and his reward shall be in proportion to his work. O, what a lot is that of the wicked! Cursed in time, and accursed through eternity!

Clarke, Adam. “Commentary on Isaiah 3”. “The Adam Clarke Commentary”. . 1832.

Read Full Post »

“For by your standard of measure it will be measured to you in return.”
Luke 6:38

[[[ Continuing the series on Judgment in the New Testament ]]]

`

The text is clear: Your actions will be measured back to you in requital.

`

If you choose to make someone else’s life a living hell…

…you can finish the sentence.

`

This verse is part of what is often called The Sermon on the Mount. Jesus is preaching to a wide and generic audience. This is a principle that applies universally.

Read Full Post »

And I heard the altar saying, Yes, O Lord God, the Almighty, true and righteous are Your judgments.
Revelation 16:7

A “speaking altar” is not as great a mystery as it might first seem. Consider that ten chapters earlier, John reported: I saw underneath the altar the souls of those who had been slain because of the word of God, and because of the testimony which they had maintained; 10 and they cried out with a loud voice, saying, “How long, O Lord, holy and true, will You refrain from judging and avenging our blood on those who dwell on the earth?” Revelation 6:9, 10   At that point they were told they should rest for a little while longer because there were a few more martyrs yet to die.

But by chapter 16 the ‘little while’ is up. They had been praying for God to carry out his judgment on the wicked, and God was. The Judgments that are falling are so severe that both an angel and these martyrs from the altar remind John that the judgments are true and righteous. The calamities are not capricious actions of a cranky spiteful God. This show of wrath is the execution of justice by a long-suffering God who gave them time to repent.

You may debate how the altar was personified, whether the martyrs spoke with one voice or if they had a spokesangel say it in their behalf; either way the judgments are true and righteous.

The judgment is spot on and upright because the wicked brought God’s retribution upon themselves. Among the judgments that are happening in this chapter is yet another example of our so-called “Christian Karma,” or more accurately, retribution in kind. In context, the entire passage from Revelation 16 is:

4 Then the third angel poured out his bowl into the rivers and the springs of waters; and they became blood. 5 And I heard the angel of the waters saying, “Righteous are You, who are and who were, O Holy One, because You judged these things; 6 for they poured out the blood of saints and prophets, and You have given them blood to drink. They deserve it.” 7 And I heard the altar saying, “Yes, O Lord God, the Almighty, true and righteous are Your judgments.”

Read Full Post »

Usually, when the story of Daniel and the lion’s den is told, the focus is on God’s great protection and Daniel’s unwavering obedience. Sometimes the ending is edited and dropped entirely, as if it were a non-essential epilogue. If your Sunday school teacher led you to think the account ended with “no injury whatever was found on him because he had trusted in his God,” then you did not get the whole story. This is how the incident really ended:


24 The king then gave orders, and they brought those men who had maliciously accused Daniel, and they cast them, their children and their wives into the lions’ den; and they had not reached the bottom of the den before the lions overpowered them and crushed all their bones.
25 Then Darius the king wrote to all the peoples, nations and men of every language who were living in all the land: “May your peace abound! “I make a decree that in all the dominion of my kingdom men are to fear and tremble before the God of Daniel; For He is the living God and enduring forever, And His kingdom is one which will not be destroyed, And His dominion will be forever.
27 “He delivers and rescues and performs signs and wonders
In heaven and on earth,
Who has also delivered Daniel from the power of the lions.”
28 So this Daniel enjoyed success in the reign of Darius and in the reign of Cyrus the Persian.

Daniel 6:24-28; New American Standard

The people who died were the malicious accusers and their families, which they were duty-bound to protect. The husbands and fathers were probably blind to the fact that they were endangering their families when they chose to accuse Daniel. There was no husbandry or fatherhood going on when they accused Daniel.

It is also significant that in verse 24, it is the king, the office of authority, that sentences them to the den. In verse 15 it is Darius the person who makes a decree, but in verse 24 it is the king who passes sentence. This is significant because the ultimate King is God, and this is typology, an episode that uses a real historic event to show how God will treat accusers in the future.

What the men wanted and chose for Daniel, happened to them. Earlier in this blog there were many posts that told about this principle of recompense in kind. (Most of these are cataloged in the Christian Karma category.) Daniel did not “make” enemies by attacking these men; he was serving his God. They judged Daniel and the king’s judgment fell on them.

So Daniel prospered during the reign of Darius and continued to prosper in the following reign of Cyrus the Persian. The accusers and their families were dead.

Read Full Post »

So they hanged Haman on the gallows which he had prepared for Mordecai, and the king’s anger subsided.
Esther 7:10

This wasn’t the first time that Haman was a victim of his own desire. At the beginning of chapter 3, Haman had received a big promotion. The effect was that men were supposed to bow to him. Mordecai, being a Jew, did not believe in bowing to men, but only to God. Haman got ticked about that because Mordecai would not treat Haman like a god. Therefore Haman sought to destroy all the Jews.

One day when the king asked for Haman’s advice on how to honor a man, Haman presumed that the king was planning to honor him, so Haman’s advice was to make a grand spectacle where everyone would know he was being honored by the king. But the king had actually been asking because he wanted to honor Mordecai for passing along information that saved the king’s life. When Haman saw Mordecai receive such grandiose honor, he was doubly ticked.

Haman’s own ideas had backfired on him. He built lofty gallows at his own house with every intention of seeing Mordecai swinging there.

Esther learned about Haman’s plot to destroy the Jews and planned an intervention. Esther played on Haman’s tremendous pride by inviting him to the banquet as she wined and dined the king. When the king was properly mellowed and ready to give Esther what ever she wanted, she exposed Haman. Now it was the king’s turn to get ticked. That is when Haman was hanged on the gallows which he had prepared for Mordecai.

But when it came to the king’s attention, he commanded by letter that his wicked scheme which he had devised against the Jews, should return on his own head and that he and his sons should be hanged on the gallows.
Esther 9:25

This illustrates the principle that a critical spirit has a way of boomeranging.

Read Full Post »

The LORD has made Himself known; He has executed judgment. In the work of his own hands the wicked is snared.
Psalm 9:16

Verse 16. The wicked is snared in the work of his own hands. Not only do we read it in the word of God, but all history, all experience, records the same righteous justice of God, in snaring the wicked in the work of their own hands. Perhaps the most striking instance on record, next to Haman on his own gallows, is one connected with the horrors of the French Revolution, in which we are told that, “within nine months of the death of the queen Marie Antoinette by the guillotine, every one implicated in her untimely end, her accusers, the judges, the jury, the prosecutors, the witnesses, all, every one at least whose fate is known, perished by the same instrument as their innocent victim.” In the net which they had laid for her was their own foot taken — into the pit which they digged for her did they themselves fall.
Barton Bouchier, 1855.

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »