May 15, 2012

When I Die, Tear My Stillhouse Down

II Corinthians 5:1
"For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens."

A still house is a make-shift shack tucked and hid somewhere out of sight and scent, where a combination of corn mash, sugar & water are used to distill the ingredients to make a backwood concoction called moonshine, white lightning or mountain dew (No, not the sodie pop). The manufacture was illicit; its distribution was illicit; and the monetary gain was illicit.

The copper (or metal) kettle is as infamous as those moonshiners you see in any old picture. In those same photographs you'll also notice oak barrels. In them was the whiskey where it mixed with charcoal and other sundries like oak chips, apples, honey or Dr. Pepper to give the hard liquor a distinct flavor.

The reason I write about the still house (which, by the way, is a American Southern thing) is that it is an apt metaphor for the sinner's body. In this ramshackle abode dwell all sorts of sinful elements, poisonous compounds. Yet, the body is only part of the equation; sin is a nature and we all have it.

David said in Psalm 51:5, "Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me."

In Psalm 58:3, he adds, "The wicked are estranged from the womb: they go astray as soon as they be born, speaking lies."

And, the main source in which sin springs forth is found in Jeremiah 17:9, which states, "The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?" Indeed, who can know it but God.

We have no else to blame for our choices but ourselves as a consequence of God's indictment of our nature. And, because there's no hope for any of us, in this life or the next, for absolution from our sinful state and sorry affairs we choose - when faced with this simple truth - to ignore the problem or do something about it.

When people ignore their problem about what to do about their sinful state, they turn to alcohol, drugs, gambling or any other sort of vice. Honestly, it doesn't even have to be something illicit. Anyone or anything that turns your heart away from God is considered an idol. And God made it very clear that He was to be worshipped before anything or anyone else (Exo. 20:3). By the way, the reason people run around doing all sorts

Truly, the only way through the problem of your sinful nature is Jesus Christ. God sent Him to the world to die for your sins (John 3:16) so that, by believing in Him, you would be forgiven and enter into a relationship with God through His Son (I John 1:3; 4:15).
Finally, when that body of sin dies you get a new body. Consider these verses:

1. Romans 6:6 - "Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin."

2. Philippians 3:20-21 - "For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself."

3. II Corinthians 5:1 - "For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens."

Here's a few more you all can look up: II Cor. 5:4; 6:16-18. Eph. 4:22-32; Col. 3:9-25.

The only catch is that, in order to have the Holy Spirit indwell within you (Rom. 8:11), you must be born again (Jn. 3:1-7). Ultimately, when you die that ol' body of sin can be put to rest and you will receive a glorious abode. Yes,, we groan in this makeshift stillhouse, but when I'll die, this ol' stillhouse will be torn down. Hallelujah!

Lord, I Want A New Body and A New Hope!

God sent His son, they called Him Jesus
He came to love, heal, and forgive.
He lived and died to buy my pardon,
An empty grave is there to prove my Savior lives.

Because He lives, I can face tomorrow.
Because He lives, All fear is gone.
Because I know He holds the future,
And life is worth the living just because He lives.

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