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AN  UNKNOWN  THIEF,  part  5  quotes (final)

1)    #5C - How can we rob God in service?

     There are at least 3 main areas involved in stealing from God in service: 1 - Areas involving our mind, or 2 - Areas involving our energy and strength, or 3 - Areas involving our usefulness.

#5C1 - How can we steal from God in areas involving our mind?

Stealing: By not spending some time in prayerful study and contemplation of God’s word each day, then you would not be able to grow into the full stature of a man or woman or child in Christ Jesus.  Since you would not be spending as much time with Him as a Christian should, then you would not be growing closer to Him as a Christian needs to.  You also would not be increasing in spiritual and practical knowledge as a Christian must.  This would make you guilty of stealing away from God, not only your time, but also robbing away from Him the close affection and bond of union He could have had with you, as well as your ability to more intelligently and effectively communicate with Him.

     What should you do if you discover that you are guilty of stealing from God in the service of your mind?
     “Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.” Matthew 22:37.

     “And thou...my son, know thou the God of thy father, and serve him with a perfect heart and with a willing mind: for the LORD searcheth all hearts, and understandeth all the imaginations of the thoughts: if thou seek him, he will be found of thee; but if thou forsake him, he will cast thee off for ever.” 1 Chronicles 28:9.     

     “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.” Isaiah 26:3.

2)     #5C2 - How can we steal from God in areas involving our energy and strength?

Stealing: By not spending some time in serving God, then you would be guilty of stealing away from Him the increase and benefit which His precious cause of truth could have obtained through your energetic and strong efforts.  This means that because of your lack of help, God’s cause was further delayed from being able to accomplish its purpose of filling this earth with His glory!

     What should you do if you find that you are guilty of stealing from God in this area of not using your energy and strength in service to Him?
     “And now, Israel, what doth the LORD thy God require of thee, but to fear the LORD thy God, to walk in all his ways, and to love him, and to serve the LORD thy God with all thy heart and with all thy soul, To keep the commandments of the LORD, and his statutes, which I command thee this day for thy good...” Deuteronomy 10:12-13.

     “Serve the LORD with gladness: come before his presence with singing.  Know ye that the LORD he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.” Psalms 100:2-3.

     “Only fear the LORD, and serve him in truth with all your heart; for consider how great things he hath done for you.  But if ye shall still do wickedly, ye shall be consumed”. 1 Samuel 12:24-25.

3)    As you serve the Lord with all your strength and energy, God will then strengthen you more and more with His divine power to accomplish marvelous things in righteousness!
     “God is my strength and power: And he maketh my way perfect.” 2 Samuel 22:33.

     “...the God of Israel is he that giveth strength and power unto his people.  Blessed be God.”  Psalms 68:35.

4)    #5C3 - How can we steal from God in areas involving our usefulness?

Stealing: By not spending some time in service and ministering to others, then you would not be a true co-worker with God, and neither would you be truly yoked together with Christ.  This means that you would be guilty of stealing away from God His right to use you in reaching out to others and manifesting His love for them.  You would also be guilty of robbing away from others the happiness, comfort and relief that your unselfish actions could have brought them.
     “They profess that they know God; but in works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate.” Titus 1:16.

     What should you do if you see that you are guilty of stealing from God in this area of service towards others, and thus are denying God?
     “This is a faithful saying, and these things I will that thou affirm constantly, that they which have believed in God might be careful to maintain good works. These things are good and profitable unto men....And let ours also learn to maintain good works for necessary uses, that they be not unfruitful.” Titus 3:8, 14.

     “Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy; That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate; Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life.” 1 Timothy 6:17-19.

     “Young men likewise exhort to be sober minded.  In all things showing thyself a pattern of good works: in doctrine showing uncorruptness, gravity, sincerity, Sound speech, that cannot be condemned; that he that is of the contrary part may be ashamed, having no evil thing to say of you.” Titus 2:6-8.

     “In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works.” 1 Timothy 2:9-10.

     “Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.” Galatians 6:2.

     This issue of maintaining good works is one reason why God gave us the Bible.
     “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.” 2 Timothy 3:16-17.

5)    What will happen if you are faithful to God in these areas of usefulness and maintain good works?
     “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” Matthew 5:16.

     “Having your conversation honest among the Gentiles: that, whereas they speak against you as evildoers, they may by your good works, which they shall behold, glorify God in the day of visitation.” James 2:12.

     Maintaining good works allows God to be glorified, which makes more people aware of God and the free salvation He offers.
     “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” Ephesians 2:10.

     In knowing these things, what should we do?
     “Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;) And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works”. Hebrews 10:23-24.

     “But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.  For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was.  But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed.” James 1:22-25.

6)    If you do your best to maintain health with the goal of better serving God and others, God will bless your efforts and strengthen you in health to be able to do more for Him in righteousness!
     “And said, If thou wilt diligently hearken to the voice of the LORD thy God, and wilt do that which is right in his sight, and wilt give ear to his commandments, and keep all his statutes, I will put none of these diseases upon thee, which I have brought upon the Egyptians: for I am the LORD that healeth thee.” Exodus 15:26.

     “Wherefore do ye spend money for that which is not bread? and your labour for that which satisfieth not? hearken diligently unto me, and eat ye that which is good, and let your soul delight itself in fatness.” Isaiah 55:2.

     “Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil.  It shall be health to thy navel, and marrow to thy bones.” Proverbs 3:7-8.

     “And ye shall serve the LORD your God, and he shall bless thy bread, and thy water; and I will take sickness away from the midst of thee.  There shall nothing cast their young, nor be barren, in thy land: the number of thy days I will fulfil.” Exodus 23:25-26.

     “Is not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke?  Is it not to deal thy bread to the hungry, and that thou bring the poor that are cast out to thy house? when thou seest the naked, that thou cover him; and that thou hide not thyself from thine own flesh?  Then shall thy light break forth as the morning, and thine health shall spring forth speedily: and thy righteousness shall go before thee; the glory of the LORD shall be thy rereward.  Then shalt thou call, and the LORD shall answer; thou shalt cry, and he shall say, Here I am.  If thou take away from the midst of thee the yoke, the putting forth of the finger, and speaking vanity; And if thou draw out thy soul to the hungry, and satisfy the afflicted soul; then shall thy light rise in obscurity, and thy darkness be as the noon day: And the LORD shall guide thee continually, and satisfy thy soul in drought, and make fat thy bones: and thou shalt be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fail not.” Isaiah 58:6-11.

     “For thou art the God of my strength:...who is the health of my countenance”. Psalms 43:2, 5.

7)    How can we deceive God and break this 8th commandment?

Deceive:  It is not possible for anyone to deceive God.  He is Omnipresent, and thus is everywhere at the same time.  God is also Omniscient or all knowing, and thus nothing can be hid from Him.
     “Can any hide himself in secret places that I shall not see him? saith the LORD.  Do not I fill heaven and earth? saith the LORD.” Jeremiah 23:24.

     “Thou God seest me”. Genesis 16:13.

     Human beings believe that we can somehow hide our thoughts, words and actions away from God’s notice, in the hope of continuing to live in sin unpunished.  But as it is impossible to fool God, then there are a lot of self-deceived individuals who are in grave danger of being forever lost unless they repent!
     “Woe unto them that seek deep to hide their counsel from the LORD, and their works are in the dark, and they say, Who seeth us? and who knoweth us?” Isaiah 29:15.

8)    May we do everything possibly to live by every word of God and keep this 8th commandment perfectly through the grace and strength He gives us.  In doing so, we will be found hid in Christ, covered by His precious robe of righteousness, and just might be able to make up one of the 144,000 – who follow the Lamb perfectly.
     “For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps: Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth”. 1 Peter 2:21-22.

     “And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Sion, and with him an hundred forty and four thousand, having his Father's name written in their foreheads.  And I heard a voice from heaven, as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of a great thunder: and I heard the voice of harpers harping with their harps: And they sung as it were a new song before the throne, and before the four beasts, and the elders: and no man could learn that song but the hundred and forty and four thousand, which were redeemed from the earth.  These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb.  And in their mouth was found no guile: for they are without fault before the throne of God.” Revelation 14:1-5.

     The Greek word for “guile” is “dolos”, and it translates and means “a trick, deceit, guile, subtilty” (Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance, word #1388).  The 144,000 have anything to do with guile or subtly tricking and deceiving people and stealing away the truth from them, because they have learned how to avoid all theft and deception by following the perfect example of Jesus Christ.  And they will also have the honor and privilege of continuing to follow Jesus withersoever He goeth throughout eternity.