~ Taxation ~
“𝑻𝒂𝒙: 𝒂 𝒄𝒉𝒂𝒓𝒈𝒆 𝒖𝒔𝒖𝒂𝒍𝒍𝒚 𝒐𝒇 𝒎𝒐𝒏𝒆𝒚 𝒊𝒎𝒑𝒐𝒔𝒆𝒅 𝒃𝒚 𝒂𝒖𝒕𝒉𝒐𝒓𝒊𝒕𝒚 𝒐𝒏 𝒑𝒆𝒓𝒔𝒐𝒏𝒔 𝒐𝒓 𝒑𝒓𝒐𝒑𝒆𝒓𝒕𝒚 𝒇𝒐𝒓 𝒑𝒖𝒃𝒍𝒊𝒄 𝒑𝒖𝒓𝒑𝒐𝒔𝒆𝒔.”
The point isn’t how much or how little the government has a right to tax. The point is, taxes are necessary and we must pay them.
“𝔽𝕠𝕣 𝕗𝕠𝕣 𝕥𝕙𝕚𝕤 𝕔𝕒𝕦𝕤𝕖 𝕡𝕒𝕪 𝕪𝕖 𝕥𝕣𝕚𝕓𝕦𝕥𝕖 𝕒𝕝𝕤𝕠: 𝕗𝕠𝕣 𝕥𝕙𝕖𝕪 𝕒𝕣𝕖 𝔾𝕠𝕕’𝕤 𝕞𝕚𝕟𝕚𝕤𝕥𝕖𝕣𝕤, 𝕒𝕥𝕥𝕖𝕟𝕕𝕚𝕟𝕘 𝕔𝕠𝕟𝕥𝕚𝕟𝕦𝕒𝕝𝕝𝕪 𝕦𝕡𝕠𝕟 𝕥𝕙𝕚𝕤 𝕧𝕖𝕣𝕪 𝕥𝕙𝕚𝕟𝕘 [𝕛𝕦𝕤𝕥𝕚𝕔𝕖]. ℝ𝕖𝕟𝕕𝕖𝕣 𝕥𝕙𝕖𝕣𝕖𝕗𝕠𝕣𝕖 𝕥𝕠 𝕒𝕝𝕝 𝕥𝕙𝕖𝕚𝕣 𝕕𝕦𝕖𝕤: 𝕥𝕣𝕚𝕓𝕦𝕥𝕖 𝕥𝕠 𝕨𝕙𝕠𝕞 𝕥𝕣𝕚𝕓𝕦𝕥𝕖 𝕚𝕤 𝕕𝕦𝕖; 𝕔𝕦𝕤𝕥𝕠𝕞 𝕥𝕠 𝕨𝕙𝕠𝕞 𝕔𝕦𝕤𝕥𝕠𝕞; 𝕗𝕖𝕒𝕣 𝕥𝕠 𝕨𝕙𝕠𝕞 𝕗𝕖𝕒𝕣; 𝕙𝕠𝕟𝕠𝕦𝕣 𝕥𝕠 𝕨𝕙𝕠𝕞 𝕙𝕠𝕟𝕠𝕦𝕣.”
But if we are willing to do what we have to do for men, why are we unwilling to do what we are supposed to do for God?
Because God is more patient?
Because we think there won’t be any issues if we flout Him?
“ℑ𝔣 𝔞 𝔠𝔬𝔪𝔪𝔦𝔰𝔰𝔦𝔬𝔫 𝔟𝔶 𝔞𝔫 𝔢𝔞𝔯𝔱𝔥𝔩𝔶 𝔨𝔦𝔫𝔤 𝔦𝔰 𝔠𝔬𝔫𝔰𝔦𝔡𝔢𝔯𝔢𝔡 𝔞 𝔥𝔬𝔫𝔬𝔯, 𝔥𝔬𝔴 𝔠𝔞𝔫 𝔞 𝔠𝔬𝔪𝔪𝔦𝔰𝔰𝔦𝔬𝔫 𝔟𝔶 𝔞 ℌ𝔢𝔞𝔳𝔢𝔫𝔩𝔶 𝔎𝔦𝔫𝔤 𝔟𝔢 𝔠𝔬𝔫𝔰𝔦𝔡𝔢𝔯𝔢𝔡 𝔞 𝔰𝔞𝔠𝔯𝔦𝔣𝔦𝔠𝔢?” —𝔇𝔞𝔳𝔦𝔡 𝔏𝔦𝔳𝔦𝔫𝔤𝔰𝔱𝔬𝔫𝔢.
𝚁𝚎𝚗𝚍𝚎𝚛 𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚛𝚎𝚏𝚘𝚛𝚎 𝚞𝚗𝚝𝚘 𝙶𝚘𝚍 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚗𝚐𝚜 𝚠𝚑𝚒𝚌𝚑 𝚋𝚎 𝙶𝚘𝚍’𝚜.
What are you supposed to be doing for God that you are NOT doing right now?
~ Lineage ~
𝑫𝒆𝒔𝒄𝒆𝒏𝒕 𝒊𝒏 𝒂 𝒍𝒊𝒏𝒆 𝒇𝒓𝒐𝒎 𝒂 𝒄𝒐𝒎𝒎𝒐𝒏 𝒑𝒓𝒐𝒈𝒆𝒏𝒊𝒕𝒐𝒓.
Remember how Abraham was told that in him all nations would be blessed?
Remember how Paul says that the Gentiles are children on Abraham in faith, as much as the Jews are children of Abraham in the flesh?
Remember how God said that we were all one, and that there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free, but we are all one in Christ Jesus, & He is all?
Remember how He said that we are the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus, and that as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name?
Isn’t it marvellous that we have have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father?
Isn’t it marvellous to be a child of God?
If we are His children, shouldn’t we be like Him?
For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light:
If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.
Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.
Be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world; holding forth the word of life.
Be ye holy, for He is holy.
~ Bethlehem ~
“𝔅𝔲𝔱 𝔱𝔥𝔬𝔲, 𝔅𝔢𝔱𝔥𝔩𝔢𝔥𝔢𝔪 𝔈𝔭𝔥𝔯𝔞𝔱𝔞𝔥, 𝔱𝔥𝔬𝔲𝔤𝔥 𝔱𝔥𝔬𝔲 𝔟𝔢 𝔩𝔦𝔱𝔱𝔩𝔢 𝔞𝔪𝔬𝔫𝔤 𝔱𝔥𝔢 𝔱𝔥𝔬𝔲𝔰𝔞𝔫𝔡𝔰 𝔬𝔣 𝔍𝔲𝔡𝔞𝔥, 𝔶𝔢𝔱 𝔬𝔲𝔱 𝔬𝔣 𝔱𝔥𝔢𝔢 𝔰𝔥𝔞𝔩𝔩 𝔥𝔢 𝔠𝔬𝔪𝔢 𝔣𝔬𝔯𝔱𝔥 𝔲𝔫𝔱𝔬 𝔪𝔢 𝔱𝔥𝔞𝔱 𝔦𝔰 𝔱𝔬 𝔟𝔢 𝔯𝔲𝔩𝔢𝔯 𝔦𝔫 ℑ𝔰𝔯𝔞𝔢𝔩; 𝔴𝔥𝔬𝔰𝔢 𝔤𝔬𝔦𝔫𝔤𝔰 𝔣𝔬𝔯𝔱𝔥 𝔥𝔞𝔳𝔢 𝔟𝔢𝔢𝔫 𝔣𝔯𝔬𝔪 𝔬𝔣 𝔬𝔩𝔡, 𝔣𝔯𝔬𝔪 𝔢𝔳𝔢𝔯𝔩𝔞𝔰𝔱𝔦𝔫𝔤.”
Bethlehem wasn’t a very special little place…
It was just a normal town in Israel…
It became immortalized as the place where the Christ was born.
It’s place and history will never be forgotten.
It’s Bethlehem, which we see lying so still, with above it the stars in a deep and dreamless sleep.
God doesn’t need something extraordinary.
He makes the ordinary extraordinary.
“He doesn’t call the qualified, He qualifies the called.”
You don’t have to be something amazing for God to use you. He’s the amazing One who will use ordinary you in an extraordinary one.
~ Inn ~
“…𝖙𝖍𝖊𝖗𝖊 𝖜𝖆𝖘 𝖓𝖔 𝖗𝖔𝖔𝖒 𝖋𝖔𝖗 𝖙𝖍𝖊𝖒 𝖎𝖓 𝖙𝖍𝖊 𝖎𝖓𝖓.”
Surely you’ve heard the hymn before… “Have you any room for Jesus, He who bore your load of sin? As He knocks & asks admission, sinner, will you let Him in?Room for pleasure, room for business; but for Christ, the Crucified, not a place that He can enter, in the heart for which He died? Room & time now give to Jesus; soon will pass God’s day of grace—soon your heart left cold & silent, & your Savior’s pleading cease. Room for Jesus, King of Glory! Hasten now, His Word obey. Swing the heart’s door widely open; bid Him enter while you may.”
These words are true. But it is not only the sinner who needs room in his heart for Jesus. It is also the saved.
Is there any room for Jesus in your heart? Have you crowded Him out? Have you stifled His Voice with pleasure & business? Have you choked His Word with care & tribulation & persecution? Does Jesus have your whole heart? Half? A quarter? Only a sliver? Are you living for Jesus, or yourself?
Have you given yourself to the Lord to be used? Have you room in your life for Jesus & the good works He has prepared for you to do?
Life is not guaranteed. We cannot play now and plan to live for Him later. When you arrive before His throne in Glory, it will be too late to go back & give Him the room that He ought to have in your life.
Swing your life’s door widely open; bid Him enter while you may.
~ Stable ~
“𝔸 𝕙𝕠𝕦𝕤𝕖 𝕠𝕣 𝕤𝕙𝕖𝕕 𝕗𝕠𝕣 𝕓𝕖𝕒𝕤𝕥𝕤 𝕥𝕠 𝕝𝕠𝕕𝕘𝕖 𝕒𝕟𝕕 𝕗𝕖𝕖𝕕 𝕚𝕟.”
We often complain when we think we aren’t getting what we deserve… or we’re getting what we DON’T deserve.
But do you think Mary & Joseph “deserved” to have to have to travel to Bethlehem to be taxed? To be turned away from an inn? To spend the night in a stable? To give birth there and lay her firstborn child in a manger?
They weren’t “bad” people. They were “good” people.
But as Jesus said later on… “there is none good but one, that is, God.”
Why do “bad” things happen to “good” people?
Because we aren’t “good.” We are bad. And we live in a bad world. And the Lord warned us that we would have tribulation & trials here. For if they treated the Master so, why should they not treat the servants so? If they hated our Lord, why should they not hate us?
We don’t deserve better treatment than Jesus.
And Jesus did not receive good treatment.
He is the Good One who was born in a stable and laid in a manger.
The only Good Man who ever lived endured things He didn’t deserve.
Who do we think we are to deserve better?
The only righteousness we have is from Him.