Daily Devotional – Don’t Rock the Boat

You are probably wondering what in the world an early 70’s soul/disco song has to do with a Godly Wod, plenty let me explain. Don’t Rock the Boat is and idiom meaning do not do do say anything that could otherwise change a good or stable situation. 

For some, actually far to many, “Christians”, have taken this to be their mantra of sorts. This question is, is it biblical? 


Romans 12:18 | joshtinpowers | Flickr

AMP and RVR 1960


CONTEXT:

First let me be clear I am not advocating anything here that is anti-biblical or no-peaceful. You can check my previous posts including Great Peace,and Daily Devotional – The Beatitudes by Thomas Watson Part LXIII to list just a couple. 

What I am advocating is not being a Don’t Rock the Boat Christian! You know the type; ‘We have always done it this way, it won’t affect me so why get involved, I don’t want to offend anyone’ etc. etc. etc!

They are afraid to speak out on concerns and issues because they have been convinced by false teachings and flat out lies that Jesus would never offend anyone. HELLO, read the book Jesus offended an entire country and they crucified Him. 

Again I am not advocating extreme revolution or any craziness here (including illegal activities) but I am saying, if our example is Christ (and the Apostles, READ Acts) they spoke out on issues and were not afraid to Rock the Boat.

That is what Paul is saying here in Chapter 12, it is all about dedicated service to God interacting in the world and how sometimes there will be trials and persecutions for that service. This is because some will not like the fact that you peacefully and lovingly point out their evil sinful ways. In other words you Rock the Boat


BREAKDOWN:

If it be possible, –  In the previous v.17  Paul says to act honorably with all people, a tall order when you deep down our human nature wants to punch someone’s lights out for treating you like garbage.

But here in our text he says, If” because he (under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit) understood sometimes you need to stand up and fight. 

As Christians we should always strive to live peacefully with EVERYONE!!! First and foremost with our brothers and sisters in Christ, then our family and neighbors vo-workers etc. 

as much as lieth in you, – Paul is not advocating Pacifism or Total Apathy; he makes it clear our living peacefully with others is CONDITIONAL. 

#1 If its possible: Will folks let you live peacefully, will they allow you to freely worship, provide for your family, obey God rather than man and so on. 

#2 Doing all we can: to avoid unnecessary conflict; we should never be the instigators of conflict. AGAIN, this does not mean we sit back and avoid all controversy. 

live peaceably with all men. – The goal is to live peacefully with all men (and women) but let us be realistic this is NOT POSSIBLE. So when is the appropriate time to disagree, argue or even fight it out? 

I would say there are two main ingredients to that:

    1. You have to have biblical backing for your position: it does us no good to discuss, argue or otherwise engaged anyone if we cannot back up our positions biblically 
    2. You need to be obeying God rather than man: Your argument needs to be because going against it disobeys the law of God. The bible is clear we are to obey the magistrates (Civil Authorities) GOD has appointed over us (Romans 13) to argue against, disobey or otherwise Rock the Boat means they have gone against God. 

APPLICATION:
  • We should make every attempt to live peacefully with everyone especially when pointing out errors. 
  • Jesus Rocked the Boat many times and a careful reading of scripture reveals He did so only in instances where the ruling class was breaking God’s Law. 
  • Jesus is our example, and if we call ourselves Christians we should follow His example.
  • We should not be afraid of Rocking the Boat, for matters that go against God’s word.

Great Peace

There have been many, many, many attempts at creating peaceful accords between nations, cultures etc. since the fall of man. All have ultimately failed!  

Man on his own, apart from Christ, never truly is capable of peace. We have all heard folks make the grand statement ‘I just pray for world peace.’ Really does the bible even instruct us to do that? Actually no, the bible instructs believers to Pray for peace in Jerusalem, Psalm 122:6-9, and no where else are we told to specifically pray for peace. 

Let us look at some BIBLICAL things regarding peace and the Christian Life:

    1. Romans 12:18 we are called to live peaceably as much as is possible
    2. Matthew 5:9 peacemakers are blessed people
    3. Hebrews 12:14 We are to strive for peace with everyone so that they may see Christ in us 
    4. Romans 8:6 Worldly or things of the flesh do not lead to peace only things of the Spirit of Christ
    5. John 14:27 The same peace that Christ had on earth through His life, death, burial and resurrection is available to all true believers
    6. Philippians 4:7 God’s peace is so marvelous, it is beyond our understanding  
    7. One of my Favorite Scripture Verses:

Logos.com

Mucha paz tienen los que aman tu ley, Y no hay para ellos tropiezo. (RVR 1960)

I can’t speak for you but I like the idea of GREAT PEACE in my life. What do I have to do to achieve this? Love God’s Law, 1 John 5:3 makes it clear the love of God is established in obedience to His laws. The 10 Commandments along with the Greatest Commandments are what I am speaking of here. These should not be a problem for a true believer, as it should be our desire to glorify, honor and please God in all we do. 


C.H. Spurgeon Exposition Psalm 119:165

Great peace have they which love thy law. What a charming verse is this! It dwells not with those who perfectly keep the law, for where should such men be found? but with those who love it, whose hearts and hands are made to square with its precepts and demands. These men are ever striving, with all their hearts, to walk in obedience to the law, and though they are often persecuted they have peace, yea, great peace; for they have learned the secret of the reconciling blood, they have felt the power of the comforting Spirit, and they stand before the Father as men accepted. The Lord has given them to feel his peace, which passed all understanding. They have many troubles, and are likely to be persecuted by the proud, but their usual condition is that of deep calm — a peace too great for this little world to break.

And nothing shall offend them, or, “shall really injure them.” “All things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” It must needs be that offences come, but these lovers of the law are peacemakers, and so they neither give nor take offence. That peace which is founded upon conformity to God’s will is a living and lasting one, worth writing of with enthusiasm, as the Psalmist here does.

John Bunyan

Nothing shall offend them. They that have this character of God’s children, will not the stumbled at God’s dispensations, let them he never so cross to their desires, because they have a God to fly unto in all their troubles, and a sure covenant to rest upon. Therefore the reproaches cast upon them, and on the way of God, do not scandalize them; for they have found God in that very way which others speak evil of; they are not so offended by anything that attends the way of God, as to dislike or forsake that way. Nevertheless we must take heed that we be not offended.

Robert Murray M Cheyne, 1813-1843.

“Learn the true wisdom of those of you who are new creatures, and who love God’s holy law. All of you who are really brought to Christ are changed into his image, so that you love God’s holy law. “I delight in the law of God after the inward man.” “The statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart”: Psalm 19. The world says: What a slave you are! you cannot have a little amusement on the Sabbath — you cannot take a Sabbath walk, or join a Sabbath tea party; you cannot go to a dance or a theatre; you cannot enjoy the pleasures of sensual indulgence — you are a slave. I answer: Christ had none of these pleasures. He did not want them: nor do we. He knew what was truly wise, and good, and happy, and he chose God’s holy law. He was the freest of all beings, and yet he knew no sin. Only make me free as Christ is free — this is all I ask. “Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them.”