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Pastor's Column 11/12/2023

PASTOR’S COLUMN


“If we are unfaithful, He remains faithful, for He cannot deny who He is.” 2 Timothy 2:13, NLT

“The Unmasking!”


There is a great dismay in learning that some people are not quite who they appear to be. This is especially unsettling in our day when we observe a parade of personalities who hold the attention, and possess the veneration from, large majorities of people; yet, their popularity is a veil disguise for deception and ego-driven motives. Perhaps this is because the temporal world we live in, prompts us to always seek immediate solutions to our needs. This is not new. The Scriptures are filled with warning against so easily succumbing to the false and dubious who appear before us with counterfeit promises; and peddling false messages. The older Apostle Paul passionately warned his young student Timothy, “In the last days there will be very difficult times. For people will love only themselves and their money.” (2 Timothy 3:1-2a, NLT). In encouraging the younger Timothy, Paul uses language that’s somewhat descriptive of people who “wear masks” to shield their true selves. Paul said further. “They will act religious but they will reject the power that could make them godly. Stay away from people like that.” (2 Timothy 3:5, NLT). Such words from the Apostle were as much instructive as they were sobering. I believe Timothy learned from this, that God requires our sincerity, transparency, and devotion to Him. Sadly, any of us could fall short at times, but our God never comes up lacking. Our God is “unmasked.” Unlike some of the deities in ancient times, God is not an inanimate, hidden, object. Paul says more importantly, in our weakness we may fail and become unfaithful; but God is always faithful, because this is His divine nature. God does not stop being who He is, when we do. God does not have to wear a mask, and conform to our rituals. In ancient Egypt, one god (Anubis) was depicted as a jackal- headed god, “associated with death and burial.” But our God is the One who is, and causes all things to become. When we’re not at our best, God remains the best of who He is. Paul Lawrence Dubar said the masks we wear are only to accommodate our pain. He says, “We smile, but, O great Christ, our cries to Thee from tortured souls arise.”

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