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Most of the articles on these WebPages have been written by godly men with a central belief in the Lord Jesus Christ. However as with most of us, they may have different beliefs concerning some particular doctrines. These articles have been made available for the purpose of “gleaning the good” where good can be found. I do not necessarily endorse all that is written by others, anymore than I expect others to endorse all that I write.

   Morning Thoughts by Elder Philip Conley

Ecclesiastes 7:29, "Lo, this only have I found, that God hath made man upright; but they have sought out many inventions."

This morning, man is bound by the confines to which he was originally created. One of the most amazing things, to me, is the outright arrogance that man has in himself (myself included) that he could stoop to ponder himself the "master of his domain." When the Lord created man, man was upright and naturally good and very good. It is important to delineate man's state before the fall and man's state after regeneration (or after the resurrection for that matter). Man originally was upright and naturally perfect. Yet, man's original state was not fit for heaven's pure world, but he was fit perfectly for the garden state where the Lord placed him. To say that man is elevated in regeneration and one day (wholly) in the resurrection to where Adam was, we would by implication nullify the glorious teaching of eternal security. Further, we would pull down the ultimate beauty of heaven. If man could fall into sin in his original state, what keeps man
from falling back into sin after regeneration if the positions are the same? If man is fit for heaven after regeneration (in soul and spirit) and fit for heaven after the resurrection (body also), why was Adam not in heaven, and even moreso, what would keep us from falling from heaven?

The preacher discusses the original state of man and also where he is now. While made originally upright and naturally perfect (not spiritually alive in Christ), he has since that time after the fall sought out many inventions. Most of the inventions that we see today, termed "modern marvels," are not marvellous when placed alongside the glory and power of God. For man, at his very best and most ingenious state, cannot escape the confines of this earth. In the discussion of the many inventions of man, we will seek to investigate two peaks of human arrogance that man possesses. In so doing, we will seek to further show the glory and power of God that supersedes any of man's inventions or the conjuring of his own mind.

Man, by natural existence, is bound to the confines of this planet. One might say, "But preacher, man has gone into space and walked on the moon." Indeed, man has done things and devised means to carry him beyond the reaches of the atmosphere, but to do so, he had to carry enough of this world with him to do it. Oxygen from the earth was carried so that man could breathe. Food was brought on the journey so he did not starve. Elements of the confines of this earth were brought to sustain him outside of the earth's atmosphere. Therefore, he is still bound by that wherever he goes. Should we one day send men to Mars or any other place in this natural universe, man is going to have to bring enough of the earth with him for his journey. Therefore, knowing that we are bound by these confines, what could possibly be the biggest peak of man's arrogance in relation to this?

The biggest invention man has ever conjured is the thought that he can carry himself beyond the confines of his habitation. That thought is embraced in works-based salvation. If we cannot even bring ourselves naturally outside of our natural elements, how could we possibly fathom to think that we could of our own merits and accord bring ourselves into that spiritual throneroom of God? How could we attain to heaven and immortal glory that is far beyond this vale of tears? How could we "pull ourselves up by our own bootstraps" into another place when naturally speaking we cannot even get ourselves away from the earth completely?

The idea of works-based salvation is not hard to sell as it appeals to man's pride and arrogance: "I can do this myself." The power of God and nothing less can propel us away from our natural confines. His life-giving voice is the only means by which we can live outside of our natural existence here. One of the most amusing stories about man's arrogance in this matter is when the first astronauts went into space. When they got beyond the atmosphere of earth, they said, "God is not here, for we have reached space and not seen Him. Therefore, there must not be a God." As my natural father said about this, "If they had just taken off their helmet, they would have seen Him in a hurry." By our own might, we cannot live beyond earth. Our creation by God was to live here, but thanks be unto God that our new creation is to live with Him some sweet day in that place that our eyes do not yet behold.

The next peak of human arrogance in man's inventions of his mind is that we could somehow destroy our natural confines ourselves. While I believe we should be good stewards here, the Lord has reserved unto Himself the natural heavens to be burned up by His word and command. (II Peter 3) The possibility of we ourselves destroying this place escapes me, as the word of God declares that His right to do at His appointed time. Back when the cold war was still going and people were scared of being obliterated in nuclear winter, my schoolmates asked us, "Aren't you worried about going to bed one day and never waking up? Don't you think that we could all blow each other up and the world too?" Thankfully, our parents had instructed us that the Lord would do that Himself, and there would still be people here when He came back. On top of that, should a nuclear strike wipe out a portion of the human race of which I am a part, the thought of going to see my
Lord far outweighs that catastrophic circumstance.

The power of God in His new creation of vital union to the objects of His love and in the destruction to the natural heavens that we see now far outshines anything that man could ever do or think. His inventions pale in comparison to the Light of the glorious power of God. Just before our verse, Solomon speaks of a righteous man that he found among a thousand. Since none, by nature, are righteous, I believe Solomon to be speaking prophetically of the ONLY righteous man that has ever walked the shores of time. Our Saviour and Redeemer is the only means by which we are righteous by His righteousness being imputed to us freely by His grace. Without Him, we would be forever confined to our natural bounds with no hope of heaven and eventually spurned from His sight for all eternity in the fire which is never quenched. As the natural heavens will one day be folded up as a garment, so our natural pleasures would forever cease into the abyss of eternal
condemnation.

Thanks be unto God for the righteous man that has elevated us above our natural climes by His grace. One day, our whole person (spirit, soul, and body) will experience the release from our natural boundaries. One day, He will speak, and the natural realm will be annihilated forever. At that day, all His family will be in peace and love forever in His presence. Therefore, let us not seek our own inventions, but rather, may we praise Him for His rich and abundant grace unto us. Indeed, our original, upright position had no flaw and sin. But, thanks be unto Him that our last position in Christ Jesus is not only without flaw but full of righteousness and true holiness from which we will never fall.

In Hope,

Bro Philip