By Stephen P. Willis
How easy we do forget. Many times in life we find people coming to our aid, assisting us in situations in which we would have otherwise been helpless. But how soon, we forget these people. Peter said that unless Christians, were adding on their part diligence, moral excellence, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, godliness, brotherly kindness and love they were forgetting God who aided them in the remission of sins: “For he who lacks these qualities is blind or shortsighted, having forgotten his purification from his former sins” (2 Pet. 1:9). I would venture to say that we find ourselves forgetting this aid more often than we might think. Consider the following instances.
Attendance. Do you find yourself getting the kids ready to go to midweek worship? Or, do you manage to make it back to the Sunday evening worship service? Or, what about Sunday morning Bible Study – do you plan to be in attendance? I wonder why so many find other things to do instead of worshiping God. Consider your last week: did you make these plans, or did you forget?
Giving. We must all face up to the fact that our physical blessings are bestowed upon us by God. He desires that we give a portion of that which we earn so that the gospel may be spread and needy saints may be attended to. When it comes to returning a portion to the Lord, do you do it grudgingly? Or do you grab whatever amount of “small change” is in your pocket or purse? Did you remember who gave you those blessings, or did you forget?
Spiritual Worship. All of the acts of worship are to be carried out in spirit and in truth (Jn. 4:24). Do you think on spiritual things while engaging in singing, prayer, the Lord’s Supper and while listening to teaching from God’s word, or do you give a sigh and wish that you could “get out of here early today”? Do you give consideration to the things that you should or do you have a mere outward appearance of worshiping? The last time you worshiped, was it in spirit and in truth, or did you forget?
Visiting. How did you become a Christian? Chances are that you were taught by someone’s coming and visiting you! Were you ever sick and wished that others would come and see how you were doing, or that they might help you meet some needs that you could not fill while you were sick? Was merely a phone call a comfort to you? During your last week in regard to your visiting, did you remember to do what you wished others would do for you, or did you forget?
Bible Study. If a foreign preacher came through your city, could he say that the saints there were more noble than the last town he had visited because they searched the scriptures daily? Do you read or meditate on the Bible daily? Speaking of the man favored (blessed) by God, the Psalmist said, “But his delight is in the law of the Lord, And in His law he meditates day and night” (1:2). If you were blessed according to your Bible study, how blessed would you be? Did you study your Bible last week, or did you forget?
What if Jesus and the Heavenly Father were as forgetful as we? We often think of Jesus as one born with a mission: the saving of mankind. What if He forgot His mission? What if He became as unsatisfied with His mission as we do ours? Or consider God: if after we have obeyed the gospel and lived our lives. to His glory, He were to forget to read our names out of the Book of Life, we would not think that too fair. We might cry out, “But, Lord, you forgot to read my name!” What would be our feelings if He replied, “Sorry, I just forgot.” The truth of the matter is that Jesus did not forget His mission: mankind has a hope of salvation. And, God will not forget to read our names out of the Book of Life – if our names are recorded there. God will not hesitate to punish those deserving punishment either.
Truth Magazine XXIV: 49, p. 786
December 11, 1980