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Summary: What happens in the heart of a Christian when being a Christian means taking a financial loss? How do we decide?

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Psalm 15

“LORD, who may dwell in your sanctuary? Who may live on your holy hill? He whose walk is blameless and who does what is righteous, who speaks the truth from his heart and has no slander on his tongue …

“Who does his neighbor no wrong and casts no slur on his fellowman, who despises a vile man but honors those who fear the LORD, who keeps his oath even when it hurts …

“Who lends his money without usury and does not accept a bribe against the innocent. He who does these things will never be shaken.”

Psalm 15:1, 4a

“LORD, who may abide in Your tabernacle? Who may dwell in Your holy hill? He … who keeps his oath even when it hurts …”

I remember the first time I really saw that phrase in Psalm 15:4 -

“He …who keeps his oath even when it hurts …”

I thought, “Now, that is integrity!”

But, how would that play out in everyday life?

What if you were a 13 year old boy who had been taught the concept of righteousness where, “… he who swears to his own hurt and does not change …” is a way a Christian lives to honor God. And, you have a part time job making about $10-$15 dollars a week and you buy a little old dirt bike for $100 and the seller let you pay $25 with a promise to make three more payments of $25. Then before you get it home the engine seized up. Would you make the payments anyway? Or would you drag the bike back and demand a refund and refuse to pay any more? Would you keep your oath even when it hurts?

Remember, you made a promise with no strings attached so in essence you “swore to your hurt”, to your financial loss.

Would you change the deal, give the bike back and refuse to make the remaining payments or would you take the loss and pay what you promised?

What if you were the best shortstop in the major leagues and the year before you had signed a 10 year contract for $10,000,000 and this year the third best shortstop in the major leagues had just signed a 10 year contract for $13,000,000. Would you honor the contract you signed or demand a renegotiation?

What if you said to God that you would follow Him faithfully for the rest of your life, putting His desires ahead of yours and you were faced with a tough decision?

This presidential election (2012) provides us with just such a choice:

One candidate when backed into a corner claims to be a Christian and yet

He supports abortion on demand

He supports legitimizing homosexual marriage

He is pursuing the intrusion of government into the church through the courts in order to force churches to pay for health insurance that would provide coverage for abortions and birth control

The other candidate is not a Christian although the Mormons claim to be a part of the wider Christian community many of their beliefs are in disagreement with the Holy Bible and yet

He supports protecting the lives of unborn children

He supports the protection of Biblical marriage

He supports the protection of religious freedom

How do you make such a decision?

OK. Let’s take politics out of it, OK? And, let’s refocus on the Holy Scripture that we started out with.

Psalm 15:1, 4a

“LORD, who may abide in Your tabernacle? Who may dwell in Your holy hill? He … who keeps his oath even when it hurts …”

Let’s say that you’re looking for a job and in spite of the present economy you get two job offers.

Job #1 - Pays $50,000 per year and has great benefits.

The company openly supports the homosexual agenda with funds and setting up food and drink stands at gay pride rallies.

The company claims to be open minded and tolerant but you have been told by people who work there that if you have an opposing point of view you’d better keep it to yourself and you must keep your religion to yourself as well.

Job #2 - Pays $40,000 per year and has fair benefits.

The company is silent on the moral issues of the day.

As you walk through the building for interviews you see indications in people’s cubicles of a variety of personal values both political and religious.

Now, here’s the thing; you’ve prayed and prayed as to which one you should take but God is not giving you any clear indication in prayer.

You know that the Bible says to provide for your family and both opportunities would accomplish that goal with Job #1 coming out $10,000 per year ahead on that one.

You know what the Bible says about sexual sin and by working for Job #1 you would indirectly be supporting the agenda of a group seeking to undermine the Biblical structure of marriage and the family. And you know that in that company you would not be able to openly speak about your faith in Christ.

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