Sunday, July 17, 2022



“Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men." Matthew 4:19.

Hello Friends:

     Welcome to the website. Last week my post was entitled “Evangelism Question 6: What About Wearing God On Your Sleeve?” We weighed the pros and cons of wearing clothing with Christian messages.
     This week my post is the last in the Evangelism Question series. I entitled it “Evangelism Question 7: What About the Word, ‘Always’?" I was planning to do a post this week to refocus on a post I did a little over a year ago entitled “Witness in Our Sleep.” But then I came upon the word “always” in 1 Peter 3:15 where Peter tells his listeners, “. . . always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you . . . “
     Synonyms for the word always are the following: consistently, constantly, continually, ever, forever, incessantly, invariably, night and day, perpetually, and unfailingly.
     In other words, we don’t get to take a break from a command to do something, ‘always’. I think churches and church leaders don’t stress the word ‘always’ enough, especially as it pertains to the verse mentioned in 1 Peter.
     Let’s look at twelve of the commands, or instructions in the almost one hundred times that the Bible writers encouraged their followers to do something, ‘always’, I’m not going to cite all the verses because that might take all day. All you have to do is to go to a computer or phone Bible app and search the word, ‘always’:
  1. Always pray to, seek, and keep our eyes on God. There are many, many verses about these, too numerous to mention them all.
  2. Always rejoice, praise, and give thanks to God. Again, too numerous to mention the verses.
  3. Always be reverent and fear God. This instruction is found in Proverbs 23:17, 28:14, and Philippians 2:12.
  4. Always let God guide us with help from His Holy Spirit. Psalm 16:8.
  5. Always learn, obey and keep God’s statutes and commands. Just read Psalm 119, the longest chapter in the Bible, to get an idea of the importance of this command. There are other commands, like The Great Commission command, that are largely ignored in today’s church.
  6. Always strive to have a clear conscience before God and man. Paul wrote this in Acts 24:16.
  7. Always excel in the Lord’s work. Paul instructs us to do this in 1 Corinthians 15:58.
  8. Always do good works. Dorcas in Acts 9:36 was commended for always doing good works, and was then restored from death to life by Peter through God’s Holy Spirit power.
  9. Always be confident that while we are alive in the body, we are away (physically) from the Lord. Paul several times in 2 Corinthians 4 and 5 refers to the importance of always recognizing Jesus’ death and resurrection, even saying we should “always carry the death of Jesus in our bodies.” I’m not claiming to know exactly what Paul is saying here, except that we are to realize that in this life we are heading toward physical death, as did Jesus, but that eternal life awaits us that will last forever.
  10. Always let our speech be gracious, seasoned with salt. Paul commanded this in Colossians 4:6.
  11. Always allow the peace of God to indwell us. 2 Thessalonians 3:16.
  12. And last, but not least, the verse that started my quest in the first place to explore the word ‘always’: Again, it’s found in 1 Peter 3:15. “. . .always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you . . ." Not just some of the time, but ‘always’.
     So, why doesn’t the church, and why don’t church leaders focus on these twelve, what I will call always commands? In my opinion, they should be almost obsessive about giving instruction and encouragement to always be ready, to be reverent, to excel, etc.,
     In almost every meeting. Peter, Paul, Barnabas, Silas, Philip, and many other early church leaders encouraged, and I will use an always synonym, 'incessantly' to do these twelve, and more ‘always’ commands.
     You might say to me, “Arlen, with this ‘always’ business, you’re heaping on me burdens that are too difficult for anyone to accomplish.” I’ll respond to that assertion by quoting John in 1 John 5:2-3: “By this, we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and keep His commandments. For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome."
     To do God’s will and to keep His commands do not heap burdens on us. But they provide us tremendous freedom and liberty of knowing we are 'always’, in His will.

So, until I see you next time, keep sharing the wonderful love of Jesus,


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