Jeremiah 9:3… “And they bend their tongues like their bow for lies: but they are not valiant for the truth upon the earth; for they proceed from evil to evil, and they know not me, saith the LORD” (KJV). Notice the phrase “they are not valiant for the truth upon the earth.” The word “truth,” as used here, means “firmness, moral fidelity, stability, faithfulness.” The dictionary gives the meaning as “faithful, fidelity, sincerity in action, character, utterance.” The word “valiant” refers to being strong with prevailing power. Many Christians are unfaithful to the word that God says, and they have no prevailing power in their lives to resist sin. The Bible is full of promises, and every promise is yours. But often people claim promises without looking at the content of those promises, so they never receive the fulfillment of those promises. There are flip sides to most of the promises, and we want to look at some of them.
Matthew 5:6… Jesus promised that if you hunger and thirst after righteousness you shall be filled. The flip side is that if you do not hunger after righteousness you will remain empty. Many never hunger for righteousness.
Matthew 5:7… Jesus said that you will be blessed and receive mercy if you are merciful. The word “merciful” means “compassionate.” The word “mercy” means “compassion, blessing given by divine favor.” This is a great promise. I need divine favor in my life, and I need the power that comes by the Holy Spirit. The flip side is, if I am not compassionate, if I am hard-hearted and unmerciful, I will not receive mercy from God.
John 8:31-32… “Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free” (KJV). Christians claim the last part of these verses often, but they are missing the full truth. Notice, IF you continue in my Word, then you are my disciples. The flip side is that if you do not continue in the Word, you are not Jesus’ disciple. Notice also, “AND ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” The Christian does not automatically know the truth. It takes time and requires study. A disciple studies, obeys, listens, and follows. It is true that the saved or born-again person is legally free, but if he does not continue in the Word, he does not live in his freedom. Christians must obey and continue in His Word. As truth is revealed to them by the Spirit and they live that truth, acting upon it, then they are made free. The word “to make free” means “to liberate.”
Romans 11:22… “Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God: on them which fell, severity; but toward thee, goodness, if thou continue in his goodness: otherwise thou also shalt be cut off” (KJV). Notice the word “if.” The Lord has nothing but goodness for you, only if you continue in His goodness. The word goodness means “usefulness, moral excellence in character.” The flip side is that if you do not continue in the goodness of God, you will be cut off. Paul was using Israel as an example in this chapter. God cut off Israel so that the church could be grafted in. Israel was cut off because of unbelief. There is a lot of unbelief among Christians. Paul said in verse 25 that he doesn’t want us to be ignorant in this matter so that we will not be conceited and be cut off as well.
The promises in the scriptures are wonderful. God is for us, not against us. But the Christian has the responsibility to grow, to continue to seek after righteousness. There is a flipside…
Pastor George Belobaba
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