Finish what you start in Christ

Scripture reading for November 27th: 2nd Peter 2, Psalm 86, Proverbs 19

2nd Peter 2:18-22 “For, speaking loud boasts of folly, they entice by sensual passions of the flesh those who are barely escaping from those who live in error. They promise them freedom, but they themselves are slaves of corruption. For whatever overcomes a person, to that he is enslaved. For if, after they have escaped the defilements of the world through the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and overcome, the last state has become worse for them than the first. For it would have been better for them never to have known the way of righteousness than after knowing it to turn back from the holy commandment delivered to them. What the true proverb says has happened to them: “The dog returns to its own vomit, and the sow, after washing herself, returns to wallow in the mire.”

Peter is a seasoned pastor and Apostle. He has watched Judas walk with Jesus and then go his own way, ending his life in suicidal misery. He evidently watched many others over his years of ministry start out right and then succumb to false teaching, fleshly enticements, or Satan’s deception. False teachers were in the church of his time and he plainly warned the people of God to beware. He used two very strong word pictures to describe what happens when a believer goes back to the world and the flesh. A dog may vomit up his food, but later the dog returns and eats it again. A sow, an unclean animal, washes herself but then goes back to wallow in the mud. The idea of a pig washing themself is somewhat humorous. Pigs wallowing in the mud is common! Thankfully, God is merciful to even use humor to help us!

Psalm 86:15-16 “But You, O Lord, are a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness. Turn to me and be gracious to me; give Your strength to Your servant, and save the son of Your maidservant.”

Prayer: Father God, thank You for this humorous but clear warning to keep moving forward in our relationship with You. Thank You that You are merciful and gracious to us and have given me strength through Your Word and the Holy Spirit to stay on the right path. Use me to warn others that may be falling away from Truth to avoid the mud, vomit and folly of a backslidden life.

Proverbs 19: 3 “When a man’s folly brings his way to ruin, his heart rages against the Lord.”

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