Summary: This message is the second in a series on choices. This message offers practical steps in making Biblically sound decisions.
Making Biblically Sound Decisions
Last week, we began our study on the topic of choices. We discovered that we are free to do practically anything we want, but the one thing that we are never truly free from is making decisions based upon the choices we are presented with. We kicked off the series by discussing the power of choice. We looked at the book Galatians where the Apostle Paul discusses that our natural desires and God’s desires are totally opposite. And our choices are never free from that conflict. If you missed last week’s message, we have a tape available in the tile room located through the double doors.
Because this topic is so important and can have such a lasting impact on not only our lives but also the lives of others around us, I believe that it is something that we should take a closer look at. In the upcoming weeks we will discuss how to recover from a bad decision, how our decisions affect other people and finally taking responsibility for the decisions we make.
But for just a few moments this evening (morning) I would like for us to center on how to make Biblically sound decisions. Like we stated last week, some decisions we face are trivial, but they are still a selection between two or more choices nonetheless. While other decisions consist of major life choices that can yield either a positive or negative result in our life and / or the lives of those around us.
Often times when we are faced with a major decision, we seek out those who we have deemed to be wise. This morning, I want us to look in the book of Proverbs that was penned by the wisest natural man who ever lived: King Solomon. God appeared to Solomon in a dream and asked him what he wanted. Now, how many of you wished God would come and ask you that? Actually He does, but often we don’t get it because of our motive for asking. But that’s another sermon for another time. But out of all the things that Solomon could have asked for, he requested an “understanding heart” or wisdom. Because of his request, God granted Solomon wisdom beyond human capability. But, to be such a wise man, he made some very poor decisions. And perhaps that is what caused him to write this proverb, which will be our topical Scripture.
"There is a path before each person that seems right, but it ends in death." – Proverbs 14:12 NLT or “There is a way that seems right to a man, But its end is the way of death.” NKJV
What prompted Solomon to write this? See, Solomon had everything any man would want: money, power, women, fine houses, you name it he had it, including as we said earlier, divine wisdom. But with all that understanding that God had imparted to Solomon, he did some very unwise things. Going back to what we talked about last week in Galatians 5 where the flesh, or our sin nature, and the Spirit of God are opposite of one another. God wanted Solomon to use the wisdom He had given him to better Israel, but because Solomon gave in to his flesh, he divided a nation. Those decisions that Solomon made while he was under the allurement of his flesh seemed right to him at the time. But I believe that in Solomon’s later years he looked back and realized that a part from God, all of humankind’s natural tendencies, even though they appear right, will eventually and ultimately lead to destruction.
Just as Solomon refers to the path in our Scripture passage, the Bible often likens our life here on earth as walking along a pathway. Jesus also taught in this manner when describing entering the Kingdom of God.
"You can enter God’s Kingdom only through the narrow gate. The highway to hell is broad, and its gate is wide for the many who choose the easy way. But the gateway to life is small, and the road is narrow, and only a few ever find it" – Matthew 7:13-14 NLT
It is our human nature to want to follow the easy path. This true with running water, it will flow downhill where there is the little resistance. The same holds true for electricity. Electrons flow in the path of least resistance. People by nature are the same way. But the easy way isn’t always the right way. Often times choosing the right “pathway” means following a course that is narrow.
That is why I believe that we should make any “life altering” decision based upon God’s Word and His will for our lives. So, here are some practical steps to making Biblically sound decisions.