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How our choices create our future.

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The freedom to make our own choices is a very important issue in our society. Every day, each of us chooses to do the things that we do, unless we are in a situation where we have been stripped of our freedom and then we must do as those who have control over us command us to do. This would be the case of those in prison or those who are enslaved by force in repressive societies. Even in these circumstances one still has freedom to make certain choices although they may be limited. For example, one can choose as to what kind of attitude and response one would have to his or her oppressors. Those in prisons can still experience freedom when they have Christ, because true freedom is an act of the soul and therefore we each can make choices in our soul. Other men cannot force us to think wrongly unless we choose to agree with them.

There are other circumstances that can limit our choices because of the authority that exists in the world. One of these would be the choices of school children that are limited to the authorities' decisions and rules. This is also true of the military. These are just two of many circumstances that can limit one's own personal choices.

However, no matter what our choices are today, they are ultimately creating our future because every choice that we make will either cause us to be blessed or cursed. Another way to put it, is that things will get better or worse for us. All choices have consequences. These consequences will be for our betterment or will work to destroy us. We are also responsible for our choices. The Bible challenges us with this admonition in 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"

Messages going forth in our society today have stressed our "right to choose" but have not balanced it with the message that our choices also have consequences (especially in the area of lust and selfishness.) For instance, most movies have glamorized many things that are bad for us and have not generally shown the destructive results of smoking, drinking, adultery, fornication, gambling, abortion, etc.

Whom shall we marry?
This is a serious life-time commitment and should never be gone into without God's guidance. Making this choice foolishly or based on emotion alone has brought much heartache to many a person.

The consequences of some choices are more deadly than others. When we rebel against God and choose our own way, we are choosing a path of destruction that will ultimately end in hell. Because of God’s love and mercy to humanity, most of our choices do not have immediate results. We are all given a time to repent and find the Lord and His ways. We may all get away with sinning for awhile; however in time we will reap what we have sown.

2 Peter 3:9 says "The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance."

Galatians 6:7 "Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. 8 For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting."

The will is how we exercise our freedom of choices. God gave man this freedom when He created Adam. God will not violate our free wills and make us do the right thing, nor will He make choices for us. We can choose His way,"the law of the Spirit of life in Christ"

Romans 8:22:"For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death."

or we can choose the way of self -- which really is the devil's way or "the law of sin and death."

The mind is the intellect, with reasoning being the "voice" of the mind. If the mind remains unrenewed, not "healed," it will continue to think carnal thoughts, believe false information, and result in fleshly speaking and living.
The emotions were designed by God to express His characteristics, which are placed in our spirits when we become born again. Those are the "fruits" written about in Galatians 5:22,23, and other places. If we do not yield to the renewal process, we continue to act like our "old father," the devil.

PUT ON THE NATURE OF JESUS.

Much of the Church considers sanctification or "conforming to the image of Jesus" (Romans 8:29) to be optional.

When Paul wrote to the Ephesians about "crucifying" the old man, this is exactly what he meant (Ephesians 4:18-24). When something is crucified, it is put to death. Every Christian needs the things of his old nature (which are part of his unregerated soul), to be put to death in order for the life of God to permeate the whole person. We have been given the power through the Holy Spirit to overcome sin in our lives. We can choose to obey God and He will empower us to overcome every sin.

Romans 6:]12 Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof.
13 Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God.
14 For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace.
15 What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? God forbid.
16 Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?

OVERCOMING THROUGH FAITH
Renewing the soul will cause negative habits and emotions to change. The key to that change is faith. Through our wills we must choose to change. However, it is only the work of the Holy Spirit who can actually bring permanent change in us. We cannot do it in ourselves. We choose to let go of the negative and that allows the Holy Spirit to do the changing. But doubt and unbelief can keep a person from receiving this kind of healing as much as it does healing of the body. A Christian must make the choices for God's way and against his own way in absolute faith that the Holy Spirit will do His part and make the needed changes in us.

If we allow our bodies to be lazy and undisciplined, they will suffer the consequences. Bad physical habits can hinder God's work in us. The Holy Spirit wants to help us overcome these ungodly ways. In the soul, if we choose to be resentful, hateful, angry, unkind, discouraged, worried, fearful, impatient, lustful, greedy, etc., we will allow these things to rule us instead of calling on the strength of Christ to help us to overcome these negative attitudes.

Many habits or addictions of the soul and body can be broken with a three-day fast. Certain desires or feelings of the body are perfectly legitimate, such as hunger, sleep, and so forth. Through the five senses, the body is the receiver of information from the world around it. The senses were given to us by God to protect us, and under the direction of the Holy Spirit, they work perfectly to serve us. However, under Satan's influence, or self-will, the senses are perverted to fulfill the lusts of the flesh which can bring destruction.

BIBLE CHOICES BRING BLESSINGS

Our future is determined by all the choices we are making today. Let us bring God into helping us make our decisions. In doing that it will determine whether our future will be secure and will have God's blessing on it. Let us be as Joshua was and declare: "As for me and my house, we will serve the LORD." God promised Joshua good success if he obeyed the words of the Bible and chose to follow Him. Joshua and his family were blessed because he made the right choices; even though he went through many battles, God was with him. He was an overcomer!

Joshua 1:8: "This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success."

Joshua 24:14: "Now therefore fear the LORD, and serve him in sincerity and in truth: and put away the gods which your fathers served on the other side of the flood, and in Egypt; and serve ye the LORD. 15 And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD."
 

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