DON’T GET CAUGHT-UP IN OTHER PEOPLE’S STRIFE

WE ALL KNOW PEOPLE WHO SEEM TO STAY IN STRIFE. EVERY TIME YOU’RE AROUND THEM,YOU CAN FEEL IT. PERSONALLY, IF I CAN, I AVOID THAT KIND OF PERSONALITY. BUT IT’S VERY HARD IF THEIR STRIFE IS DIRECTED TOWARD YOU, OR THOSE YOU LOVE.

TODAY, WE WILL DISCOVER WHAT THE WORD HAS TO SAY ABOUT STRIFE: AND MY ADVICE TO YOU IS OUR TITLE FOR THIS MESSAGE: DON’T GET CAUGHT-UP IN OTHER PEOPLE’S STRIFE. AVOID IT WHEN YOU HAVE THE CHOICE.

ONE OF THE HARDEST CHALLENGES IN OUR WALK WITH THE LORD, IS TO STAY OUT OF STRIFE: JAMES 3:14-16 – BUT IF YE HAVE BITTER ENVYING AND STRIFE (OR QUARELING) IN YOUR HEARTS, GLORY NOT (DO NOT BE PROUD),  AND LIE NOT AGAINST THE TRUTH.

            THIS WISDOM IS NOT FROM ABOVE, BUT IS EARTHLY, SENSUAL, DEVILISH.

            FOR WHERE ENVYING AND STRIFE IS, THERE IS CONFUSION AND EVERY EVIL WORK.

STRIFE OPENS-UP THE DOOR FOR EVERY EVIL WORK! WHEN I SAY THIS, I MEAN, STRIFE OPENS-UP THE DOOR FOR THE ENEMY OF OUR SOULS, TO BE INVITED INTO OUR HOMES, CHURCHES, AND WORK PLACES. THESE ARE EVIL WORKS SUCH AS: HATRED; PERVERSION; SIN; SCOFFING; GOSSIP; PRIDE; ANGER; AND FLESH.

ALL OF THESE CAUSE DIVISION; AND MANY TIMES, SEPARATION AND DIVORCE. NOT TO MENTION ALL KINDS OF CRIMES AND WARS —-AND YES, CHURCH SPLITS.

PROVERBS 10:12  HATRED STIRRETH UP STRIFES…  HERE, WE SEE STRIFE ORIGINATES FROM HATRED.

PROVERBS 16:28  – A FROWARD MAN SOWETH STRIFE: AND A WISPERER SEPARATETH CHIEF FRIENDS. THE DISOBEDIENT MAN OR WOMAN SOWS DISSENSION AND DAMAGES FRIENDSHIPS.

OVER THE YEARS, IT HAS BEEN MY ADVICE: DO NOT HAVE CONVERSATION WITH A PERSON OF STRIFE. IT IS DISOBEDIENCE TO GOD, AND IS POISON TO THE SOUL OF THOSE WHO GET INVOLVED WITH SUCH,  AND IT CAUSES DIVISION. 

IT IS VERY EASY TO CHOOSE SIDES, AND MANY BE DEFILED.  IT IS NOT INNOCENT; IT IS DEVILISH: OR WE COULD SAY DEMONIC!

IT HAS BEEN MY EXPERIENCE, THAT THOSE WHO GET INTO STRIFE, ALWAYS NEED A COHART, OR ACCOMPLICE. THEY HAVE A HARD TIME EXPRESSING IT WITHOUT AN AUDIENCE; AND MANY TIMES , IN THE CHURCH, THEY “DRAW-IN” A STRUGGLING NEW CONVERTWHO IS STILL ON THE  “MILK BOTTLE”, SO-TO-SPEAK. THEY DON’T EVEN UNDERSTAND THEY ARE BEING USED BY THE HATE OF ANOTHER HALF-BACKSLIDDEN CHRISTIAN.

PROVERBS 17:19 – HE LOVETH TRANSGRESSION (OR LOVES TO OFFEND) THAT LOVETH STRIFE;  AND HE THAT EXALTETH HIS GATE SEEKETH DESTRUCTION.

THIS VERSE WARNS THAT OFFENSES ARE EASILY COMMITTED BUT DIFFICULT TO DISSOLVE OR GO AWAY. IT’S LIKE ‘WILD FIRE” ON DRY TIMBER: IT IS HARD TO EXTINGUISH.

PROVERBS 22:10 – CAST OUT THE SCORNER, AND CONTENTION WILL GO OUT; YEA, STRIFE AND REPROACH SHALL CEASE. IN THIS VERSE, WE ARE REMINDED THAT CONTENTION AND BICKERING WILL EXIST AS LONG AS THE SCORNER IS AROUND. A GOOD REFERENCE FOR THIS IS MATTHEW 18:17 – AND IF HE SHALL NEGLECT TO HEAR THEM, TELL IT UNTO THE CHURCH: BUT IF HE NEGLECT TO HEAR THE CHURCH, LET HIM BE UNTO THEE AS A HEATHEN MAN AND A PUBLICAN (AS A PAGAN AND TAX COLLECTOR).

THE FUEL IS WHAT KEEPS THEN FIRE BURNING.  —-I KNOW SOMETIMES IT IS HARD TO GET OVER THINGS, AND FORGIVE,  ESPECIALLY IF IT IS AN ON-GOING OCCURANCE. BUT FORGIVENESS IS THE ONLY WAY OUT IN GOD’S WORD. WE ARE COMMANDED TO FORGIVE 70 TIMES 7 IN MATTHEW 18:22. IT IS SAID, THAT MEANS 490 TIMES IN ONE DAY.

IF ONE PARTY TO A QUARREL, REALLY WISHES FOR PEACE, HE CAN OFTEN OBTAIN IT BY SIMPLY ABSTAINING FROM MAINTAINING HIS CONTENTION. HIS OPPONENT   WILL GET TIRED OF A ONE-SIDED WAR.

PATIENCE, MEEKNESS, AND QUIET ENDURANCE WILL MAKE PEACE IN THE END. THIS WAS CHRIST’S METHOD. HE BROUGHT PEACE BY HIS ACTIONS OF BROTHERLY LOVE, PEACEABLY SUBMITTING TO WRONG.

I BELIEVE MANY TIMES THE FIRE WOULD GO OUT IF A THIRD PARTY DIDN’T ADD THE FUEL. BUT A THIRD PARTY WHO IS ALWAYS IN STRIFE THEMSELVES,  INTERFERES, NOT AS A PEACEMAKER; BUT TO TAKE ONE SIDE; OR TO MEDDLE IN PURE MISCHIEF MAKING, DELIGHTING TO STIR UP THE EMBERS OF STRIFE; OR TO SHOW THEIR OWN POWER  AND IMPORTANCE.

GREAT HARM IS DONE, BY MERELY CARELESS GOSSIP OR TALE-BEARING. WHEN AN ELEMENT OF SPITE IS ADDED AND THERE IS A DELIBERATE TTEMPT TO AGGRAVATE A QUARREL, THE TALE-BEARER IS DEFINITELY CRUEL. MOST TALES ARE LIKE SNOWBALLS, THEY GROW AS THEY PROCEED.

THE WORD OF GOD SAYS IT SO WELL, EVEN A CHILD CAN UNDERSTAND: II TIMOTHY 2:23-25 – BUT FOOLISH AND UNLEARNED QUESTIONS AVOID, KNOWING THAT THEY DO GENDER STRIFES.

               AND THE SERVANT OF THE LORD MUST NOT STRIVE: BUT BE GENTLE UNTO ALL MEN, APT TO TEACH; PATIENT,

               IN MEEKNESS INSTRUCTING THOSE WHO OPPOSE THEMSELVES; IF GOD WILL PREADVENTURE (OR MAYBE) WILL GIVE THE REPENTANCE TO THE ACKNOWLEDGING OF THE TRUTH.

I ASK YOU TODAY, IF YOU HAVE AN AGENDA, JUST BECAUSE YOU WANT TO BE RIGHT—-TURN THAT OVER TO GOD AND LET HIM WORK ALL OF THIS OUT FOR YOU.

THOSE WHO ARE CAUGHT-UP IS SOMEONE ELSE’S STRIFE, TO REPENT, AND STAY AWAY (IF POSSIBLE), FROM THAY ANGRY AND UNFORGIVING PERSON, AND PRAY THEY WILL REPENT OF THEIR UNFORGIVENESS, BEFORE YOU FA;; INTO THAT SNARE WITH THEM.

SPEND TIME YOU HAVE BEEN WASTING: LISTENING, AND JOINING-IN ON THEIR STRIFE,—-IN PRAYING FOR THOSE THEY ARE AGAINST; THAT THEIR LIVES WILL CHANGE.

FOR HE THAT WILL LOVE LIFE, AND SEE GOOD DAYS, LET HIM REFRAIN HIS TONGUE FROM EVIL, AND HIS LIPS THAT THEY SPEAK NO GUILE.

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