Thursday, February 06, 2014

Making Wise Decisions: Does It Violate Scripture?


Most decisions we make will be small ones, but I'm convinced that many of them are sowing the seeds of undesirable destinies. How can we make good decisions, so that we're living lives of order, balance, and peace? Over the next couple of weeks, I'll be sharing with you the basics of making sound biblical decisions.


Will this decision violate the clear teaching of Scripture?

The very top priority for any saved person should be living by our manual for life, the Bible. In God's preserved Word we have His thoughts (I Corinthians 2:16) on every situation we could ever face. Some things are stated explicitly, as in the Ten Commandments, where God makes it clear that we are to do things like honor our parents, and not to do things like murder, steal, or lie. Other things are not quite as clear, but there are principles we follow. For example, a principle I use in my own life is that my body is the temple of the Holy Spirit (I Corinthians 6:19), so I don't put harmful things into it, such as tobacco smoke or alcoholic drinks. The clear-cut things are a lot easier to identify than the "principle" ones, but each person must come to a point of obedience to the Lord in these areas (Romans 14:5).

When you're faced with a decision, the first thing you should do is hold it up to God's Word and see if it's something that violates God's teaching (Acts 17:11 - search the scriptures daily). In order to know what the Bible says, of course, you must be reading it and hearing it correctly preached (Hebrews 10:25) - both of which are clearly taught in Scripture!

Practically speaking, as you read your Bible daily, it's a good idea to have something handy to write down the things you learn about God and what He desires for your life. This could be as simple as 3x5 cards or a plain old composition notebook. It could be a beautiful journal, or it could be an elaborate document on your computer with tags and footnotes. Just have some way that you can keep a record of things that God speaks to you about and that you can easily find what you're looking for later. I've added a section to my scripture journal entitled "God Wants Me To..." where I record verses I find in my daily Bible reading that tell me things that God definitely wants me to do. He wants me to not offend others; He wants me to love others; He wants me to witness to others - that type of thing. If we don't know Him and His commands, we won't be able to make wise decisions that please Him!

Let me encourage you to continue learning - or begin learning! - God's commands and desires for you, so that when you're facing a decision you will have a way to know if that decision will violate His clear teaching from His Word!

Did you miss a post in this series? You can find links to them all in my introductory post!

Helpful Resources:
What Do I Know about My God?
The Choice is Yours: Life Happens. Walking with God is a decision.
What's on Your Mind?: Discover the Power of Biblical Thinking
Ten Principles for Biblical Living: Foundational Truths that Have Guided My Life and Ministry



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photo credit: `James Wheeler via photopin cc 
I added text and special effects to this picture under a Creative Commons license

2 comments:

  1. The best first place to start! There are so many reasons to be in the Word daily, and this is a vital one.

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    Replies
    1. So true, Barbara! I'm still learning that my daily time in the Bible IS important, not just some act of self-discipline. I read a quote the other day that said, in effect, my devotional time is not an exercise in discipline but an acknowledgement of my need for God on a daily basis. When I see it from that perspective, it's so much more motivating to get into God's Word!

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