Summary: The fear of the Lord is true wisdom; to forsake evil is real understanding
RETURNS AND EXCHANGES
Thousands of folk will, after the holidays, be returning and exchanging
unwanted or unsuitable gifts for things entirely different that will better
meet their needs.
That is the physical activity now let us discuss the spiritual. By spiritual
is meant men's relationship to the eternally righteous and all-
powerful Creator God in Heaven.
God is a Spirit and He has placed a God-Consciousness in every member
of humanity (Proverbs 20:27 KJV, "The spirit of man is the candle of
the LORD, searching all the inward parts of the belly").
God has also given us the gift of His Son who, in turn, gave
His life a ransom for many. Most are familiar with the wording of the
Bible book of John, chapter three and verse 16 (John 3:16).
Why was this gift necessary?
The gift was necessary because long ago and
far away some things went askew in God's perfect Heaven where another
gift had been given to one heavenly being named Lucifer. Lucifer is a
God-created being. "Angel," which will suffice for this particular discussion.
The Bible in Isaiah 14:12 tells that he was a being of high rank in the
Lucifer, means “shining one” and is rendered “day-star” in some
translations of the Holy Bible. This in the only time in the Bible this
being is called Lucifer. Another name ascribed to him is Satan.
Lucifer became prideful and covetous, wanting to be above or higher
than his Creator. The eternal, everlasting God in Heaven did not and
will not tolerate such attitudes; therefore, Lucifer was deposed
(Isaiah 14: 12-19 KJV).
Genesis 1:26-28 (KJV) God created a perfect man and a perfect
"help-meet" for the man. Adam and his wife Eve were placed in a
perfect earthly environ-ment to keep or maintain what was called the
Garden of Eden (Genesis 2:15-17 KJV).
All was well until Satan, in a disguise, entered the garden and tempted Eve
and Adam to disobey the commands of their Creator (Genesis 3:1-8 KJV). They succumbed to that original prevaricator and sin entered the Earth.
John 8:44 (NLT), "...the devil, and you love to do the evil things he does.
He was a murderer from the beginning. He has always hated the truth,
because there is no truth in him. When he lies, it is consistent with his
character; for he is a liar and the father of lies..."
The death penalty was the punishment for having transgressed the Law
that had been given by their Creator. They had missed the mark of
total trust and obedience to their Maker.
The effects of what is called "original sin" was passed
on to Adam and Eve's posterity--us. The penalty would also apply to
all of human-kind. Even the earth would groan in anticipation of
redemption. Paul the Apostle states in Romans 8:22 that creation itself is
eagerly awaiting the full redemption; because it was subjected
to futility (ineffectiveness) when the first Adam sinned, and will benefit
from ultimate redemption (an element of salvation to express deliverance
Satan loves to mingle just enough truth with error to make things appear
as being correct, but it is for the purpose of bringing about our fall.
We see this example in Genesis, Chapter three. Please read it.
Satan and man had exchanged the gift of eternal life for a moment's
fleeting forbidden act of so-called pleasure and accomplishment ("you
shall be as gods," Genesis 3:5).
God, in what is termed His "agape" love, provided an atonement for sin
via the death, burial, and resurrection on His only begotten Son Jesus
the Christ. 2 Corinthians 5:21 (KJV) says, "For he hath made him to be
sin for us , who knew no sin ; that we might be made the
righteousness of God in him."
The lovely Son of God who knew no sin became sin for us that we might
have everlasting life (please see Romans 10:13).
This gift was necessary so that we might be able to return to our holy
Now, after this synopsis, we will consider the thoughts mentioned
early on: returns and exchanges.
Let us consider the spiritual applications of the terms return and exchange.
A. definitions and dynamics of the term return
1. come back--one had to be "there" before they would desire to "come back."
If one once had a vital and lively relationship with Jesus, i.e., having experienced
salvation--that crisis experience that came via dying to the world and living unto
Christ and His precepts found in Holy Scripture and implemented by the Holy
2. rejoin--Once you were very enthused about "working" for the Lord.
If today finds that zeal diminished and the once fiery motivation for service
only smoldering embers then, it is time to return and rejoin the ranks. "You