Ozark Christian Living

Family Life & Homemaker's Guide

Train to Abstain

October 1

“Abstain from all appearance of evil."  1 Thessalonians 5:22

"... partial abstinence equals partial indulgence"


Beauty, in the end, may indeed turn out to be skin deep; but the ugliness of evil resides in the fathomless recesses of the heart.  "For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies: These are the things which defile a man: ..."  JESUS implied that the heart of man, is a vast demonic warehouse for every sort of vile and wicked invention.  The Old Testament Prophet, Jeremiah, said the heart, acting as both guard and storehouse is: "deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it."  It would appear from Scripture, and certainly this bears out in our world today, that the inventory of the heart's defilement is beyond reckoning. 

All of this, of course makes the abstaining that much more difficult ...  "For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I." ... and no less than the late, great, apostle Paul, knew of the personal and prodigious fight evil pitches against GOD and those WHOM HE redeems.  "Give none offence, neither to the Jews, nor to the Gentiles, nor to the church of GOD: Even as I please all men in all things, not seeking mine own profit, but the profit of many, that they may be saved."  The driving passion of every true child of GOD is to be used of HIM to beget spiritual offspring.  "The fear of the LORD is to hate evil: pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, and the froward mouth, do I hate."  Similarly, the daunting fear must be of evil, and yea, even its appearance; which is quick to quench any hope of effective witness unto SPIRIT-filled reproduction. 

Don't be confused, the word "appearance" does not suggest that evil is in the eye of the beholder.  No! ... "evil" is thoroughly defined in the Word of GOD.  That said however, if our lives are viewed close enough, and long enough, the direction we are headed will be apparent.  At the end of the day, what you see is what you get regarding evil, or its absence, in each of us.  "Enter not into the path of the wicked, and go not in the way of evil men.  Avoid it, pass not by it, turn from it, and pass away."  The Christian must daily train to abstain in HIS Word; which is the only successful abstinence manual known to man.  Beware of false advertising ... partial abstinence equals partial indulgence; and of a certainty, the Bible never condones that half-hearted effort which eventually meets evil halfway.       

"Let not then your good be evil spoken of:"

For Love of Country
 Henry Wilson  (1812-1875)
(Vice President under Ulysses S. Grant)
"Men who see not GOD in our history have surely lost sight of the fact that, from the landing of the Mayflower to this hour, the great men whose names are indissolubly associated with the colonization, rise, and progress of the Republic have borne testimony to the vital truths of Christianity."

This site was last updated 09/30/2011