Heed God’s warnings

Published 2:42 pm Thursday, May 4, 2023

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On the road to my home are traffic signs which give drivers warnings about the road on which they are travelling. One sign gives a warning concerning the deer population in that area. It is a sign that warns drivers that the area is a deer crossing. There are other signs that offer warnings about hazards on that road. Signs indicating what is a safe speed allowed by law for that road and another that indicates that part of the road is curvy. All these signs are given for the benefit and safety of drivers. If one expects to travel that road safely, he must take heed of the warnings. In the Bible, God has placed warnings that we must take heed to if we expect to avoid the dangers and hazards that the devil places in our way as we travel through this world on our way to Heaven.
In Ezekiel 33:1-5, Ezekiel said, “Again the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, Son of man, speak to the children of thy people, and say unto them, When I bring the sword upon a land, if the people of the land take a man of their coasts, and set him for their watchman: If when he seeth the sword come upon the land, he blow the trumpet, and warn the people; Then whosoever heareth the sound of the trumpet, and taketh not warning; if the sword come, and take him away, his blood shall be upon his own head. He heard the sound of the trumpet and took not warning; his blood shall be upon him. But he that taketh warning shall deliver his soul.”
Ezekiel helps us to understand that we must take heed to God’s warning concerning our enemy. Satan is actively trying to destroy our souls by separating us from God. It is for these reasons that Peter said, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world” 1 Peter 5:8-9 KJV.
James helps us to know that it is possible to resist Satan’s attempt to separate us from God. He said in James 4:7-8 KJV, “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.”
But what happens if one does not heed the warnings that God has given throughout His Word? In the parable of the Wise and Foolish Man in Matthew 7:24-27, Jesus teaches if we ignore God’s warnings we will be destroyed. But destruction can be avoided if we will take heed to His Words.
Satan continually tries to deceive people by leading them into error. That is what he did to Adam and Eve in Genesis 3:1-6. Satan uses false prophets and teachers in his deception plan. He does so to lead people from God and His saving grace in the form of His Son Jesus. We learn in Hebrews 3:12-13 KJV, “Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God. (13) But exhort one another daily, while it is called To day; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.
In 2 Peter 2:1, Peter speaks of false prophets and teachers and the dangers they present to us. Then in 1 John 4:1, God warns us not to believe everybody, but to test them to see if they are of God. Then in Matthew 15:8-9, Jesus warns of the dangers of accepting the doctrines and commandments of men.
God wants us to heed His warnings so that we can make our calling and election sure (2 Peter 1:10-11). But this is only possible if we do not deceive ourselves. In Luke 21:34-36 KJV, Jesus said, “And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares. For as a snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth. Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.”
Just as Paul did, we must discipline ourselves (1 Corinthians 9:27); to be acceptable to God takes effort. Jesus warns in Luke 17:3-4, that we must take heed to ourselves. To Timothy Paul wrote, “Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee” (1 Timothy 4:16 KJV).
In conclusion, have you taken heed to the warnings of God? Have you obeyed the Gospel of Christ? If not, you are still facing the devices of Satan, the dangers and hazards he has place in front of you without God. Why not heed the warnings of God and become a Christian today?
(Tony Hoss is minister of the Centerview Church of Christ, Elizabethton)

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