|Character Does Matter|
|Written by Franklin D. Raddish|
|Wednesday, 22 July 2009 00:00|
The Bible says in Colossians 3:17, “And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.” (King James Bible) The Word of God consistently teaches us to have godly character. There are too many politicians who have the testimony of do as I say, but they do the opposite of what they say. Also, we have too many preachers with a double standard testimony. In both cases, this shows a lack of godly character. The problem is there is a lack of commitment to do right. Evangelist Dr. Bob Jones, Sr., said, “Do right till the stars fall.” We must purpose in our hearts beforehand what we will or will not do. The Bible says in Daniel 1:8, “But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s meat, nor with the wine which he drank: therefore he requested of the prince of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself.” (King James Bible) Character cannot be bought or inherited; it must be earned by the earnest desire to do right. There is no greater compliment to an individual than for someone to tell him that he is a man of character. For many people, character is subject to change by the amount of money involved. Character is the sacrificial lamb upon the altar when it comes to fame, fortune, and power. A person of character can eat, sleep, and work well because of the peace in his heart that he is doing right. The number one enemy of character is the philosophy of situation ethics. The devil is the author of this philosophy.
Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee is sponsoring a resolution in Congress to honor the late Michael Jackson. Congressman Peter T. King, a New York Republican, is a recent example of a man of character. King said that the deceased Michael Jackson was a “pervert, child molester, and pedophile.” He said that he would steadfastly oppose a resolution to honor Michael Jackson. A man of character is not afraid to tell the truth in the face of opposition.
Evangelist Dr. Bob Jones, Sr., also said, “Finish the job.” Men of character will finish the job the Lord has set before them. Doing right consistently takes a man of character, but doing wrong comes naturally. We have many men who are considered characters, but we have too few men of Godly character. The following men are men who are considered as characters: former President Bill Clinton, Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, former Washington D.C. Mayor and sitting Counsel Member Marion Barry, and the list continues on. With these men their philosophy is that the end result justifies the means to get them. The Bible says in Romans 3:13-18, “Their throat is an open sepulchre; with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips: 14 Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness; 15 Their feet are swift to shed blood: 16 Destruction and misery are in their ways: 17 And the way of peace have they not known: 18 There is no fear of God before their eyes.” (King James Bible)
Men of character such as Evangelist Billy Sunday, D.L. Moody, Maze Jackson, Bob Jones, Sr., Oliver B. Greene, and Billy Kelly were men of godly renown who with their lives promoted the cause of righteousness many times in the face of great adversity. Men who are characters are a dime a dozen, but men of character are rare coins. We need many more men of Godly character who will step forward and put themselves on the firing line for the cause of Christ. The Bible says in II Timothy 1:7, “For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” (King James Bible) The Bible also says in Romans 8:36-39, “As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. 37 Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. 38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, 39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (King James Bible)
Godly men of character in the Bible include Joseph, Joshua, Caleb, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah. Joseph was sold into bondage by his brothers and arrived in Egypt to be bought as a slave by Potiphar, an officer of Pharaoh. Potiphar’s wife tried to entice Joseph to commit adultery with her but he refused and fled from her. (Genesis 39:7-12, King James Bible) Joshua and Caleb stayed faithful to God after they returned from spying out the land of Canaan. They both showed Godly character in the midst of rebellion by the children of Israel. (Numbers chapters 13 and 14, King James Bible) Daniel was a man that purposed in his heart not to defile himself. He was a faithful, Godly man who would not cease his prayer life even though there was a threat of death that could come about because of it. (Daniel 1:8 through chapter 6, King James Bible) Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah faced certain death because they would not bow down to the golden image that Nebuchadnezzar had set up in the plain of Dura. It took men of old-fashioned, Godly character to stand against Nebuchadnezzar’s order that all must bow down to his golden image. (Daniel 3, King James Bible)
Have you purposed in your heart to stand for what is right regardless of the consequences?
Pastor Franklin D. Raddish is the Founder and Director of Capitol Hill Independent Baptist Ministries. He holds weekly Bible studies at the U.S. Capitol, Justice Department, and the Pentagon. He attended Bob Jones University, and graduated from Tabernacle Baptist College in Greenville, SC, with a degree in Bible.
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