The 'BARKING OWL' always has something to say, and like the feathered version, can be either WISE...............or ANNOYING!

Monday, April 3, 2017


Did you see the INTRODUCTION to this A to Z series? Check it out here.

I was fixing myself a bowl of cereal this morning and as I poured the milk I realized that I very seldom have a drinkable remnant of milk to slurp up after the sodden flakes and banana slices are gone. Somewhere from the recesses of my mind (perhaps because I've been thinking about this posting, but not necessarily) came the thought: "I am pretty good at estimating the right amount of milk to put in the cereal." And then...."Who should I tell?" LOL! Of course, it was shame and embarrassment which followed next, but I was sadly impressed with how easily I slipped into BOASTING mode! (But pouring milk does just happen to be a big part of my skill set.)

By the way, the idea that someone saved from his sinfulness by the work done on the cross by Jesus Christ will never sin again is terribly incorrect. We are freed from the bondage to sin. From the slavery of sin. From the overwhelming proclivity to sin, but even being saved by grace and forgiven, we are still able to shun the right, and to choose the wrong. Thankfully, as God's Spirit led me to immediate acknowledgment and confession of my wrongful interest in BOASTING, he prompts us and nudges us and helps us to escape from the temptation to sin. And forgives us in Christ when we fail.

Back to the subject? Sure.

The Bible has a lot to say about BOASTING. And it's not all bad. I may BOAST in the love God has shown me but only in as much as He shows it to all of us because such "boasting" then reflects upon Him. I may BOAST in the character and accomplishments of my kids, as long as I am being truthful and encouraging, and I am not just trying to blow my own horn. Proverbs 27:2 says "Let someone else praise you, and not your own mouth; an outsider, and not your own lips." So I may "OtherBoast" (praise), but not "SelfBoast."

We people have one major tendency to wrongful boasting that God was very determined to help us avoid. When someone recognizes their need for salvation, they often follow up by attempting to save themselves by setting out to perform some type of "good works" lifestyle. But if we could do that, can you imagine the swaggering approach we would make to those Pearly Gates? What a horrible heaven that would create! But we are saved by grace!

For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast.  Ephesians 2:8,9

I think BOASTING is one of those sins that we can readily detect, and despise, in other folks, but are less likely to find within ourselves. We don't want to because we know it is so wrong. In fact, Psalm 94, as well as James 4, tell us that BOASTING goes hand and hand with evil.

They pour out arrogant words; all the evildoers are full of boasting. Psalm 94:4
As it is, you boast in your arrogant schemes. All such boasting is evil. James 4:16

It may also be hard to imagine people walking into hell and still BOASTING. Perhaps we think someone who was determined to avoid humbling himself enough to be saved by the Cross will suddenly repent and regret that decision when facing hell, but I don't think so. The arrogance that refuses salvation by grace will only grow worse after conviction. Like the murderer who screams out from death row "I'll get you for this!," the BOASTER in hell will make some inane claim to fame. "I am more depraved and more deprived of anything good than the rest of you!" 

Let us repent now. In the light. Choose grace and after spending the rest of our lives growing in Christ and growing little buds of good fruit, then let's move to heaven to spend eternity flowering and producing and enjoying unimagined blessings instead.

By the way...MILLERWRITES is copyrighted. Why copy and paste when you can just create a link?

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