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Although, we may not like to meditate on it, the fact is there are some things that God detests. There are thinks that He feels so strongly about that He actually uses the word “hate.” When I think about this, words come to mind like: sin, the devil, injustice, wickedness etc. But the thing that snagged me today was more easily overlooked. The scripture where Jesus says, “What is highly valued among men is detestable in God’s sight” came to my mind and wouldn’t leave.

My mind was spinning immediately as God brought light to this scripture. What do I value highly? Is it what God values highly or are my values more closely aligned with what is valued “among men”? You may say, “John, you esteem missions, what could be closer to the heart of God”? It’s true that rescuing the lost is close to the heart of God, but I won’t let myself off the hook so easily. What about the other areas of my life? What about the day to day? What about the praxis of ministry?

One translations says, “what is highly esteemed.” What do we esteem in our culture? What do we place high value in? Appearances, image, clothing, style, money, a certain education, a certain job title, prestige, sexual “freedom”, business “tactics”, entertainment, pop culture? If it’s honored among men, it’s detestable to God.

I started thinking, “Wow God, you are not like us.” If society honors it, I feel the current pulling me to honor it, but you are not moved. Over thousands of generations, you are still the same. This is where the holiness of God comes in. His ways are not our ways, His thoughts are not our thoughts. See Here. I began to think about the unsettling scripture, “work out your salvation with fear and trembling”. When we think of God’s ways and what God esteems compared to the strong current of the culture we live in, it’s understandable that we would “tremble” before him, especially when we are representing Him before the world and will one day have to answer to Him before representatives from every nation and every generation.

It’s in these times that I cry out, “search me O Lord.” “Help me to have the mind of Christ; to be able to see things like you see them and to be able to make the adjustments in my life without the fear of what others may think.” I have always said, “When you love someone, you care about the things they care about.” This is the motivation, not fear, but love. In the end, it’s only God’s judgement that will matter, not man’s.
JL

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