The acts of the flesh are obvious: idolatry….witchcraft…hatred
Today is 9/11 not 2001 but 2011, the tenth anniversary of THE DAY in America that will never be forgotten and indeed should not be. It was THE DAY which has impacted and forever changed our society and the way we used to do things be they ever so simple and unafraid. This day does relate to my month of devotions and what I am attempting to do by emphasizing that the outside is a reflection of that which is on the inside.
Today the second trio of inside traits and characteristics are illustrated in the demonic witchcraft like thinking, feeling and acting perpetrated and perpetuated by the idolatrous radical Islamists filled with unmitigated, unexcelled hatred against those who by them were and are thought to be infidels.
Idolatry by definition, as it relates to the growing and developing life of a Christian, is anything that rises to a higher level of priority, prominence, precedence than Jesus Christ. The only goal of achievement toward which the believer should be aspiring is that for the ‘prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus’ Philippians 3:14 ‘so that He Himself will come to have first place in everything’ Colossians1:18
Witchcraft by definition is the art or power of bringing magical or preternatural power to bear or the act or practice of attempting to do so. The scriptures do have things to say about the practice. 1Sam 15:23 For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, he hath also rejected thee from being king.
As I think about witchcraft you will come across the word ‘magic’ or ‘magical’ as well. Just as an aside, very early in my second pastorate, a colleague of mine firmly believed that magicians were to be likened to sorcerers and those who worked in witchcraft. With him, this was not ‘kidding’ but serious. If you are of that mind, I ask for your forgiveness for I have in the past and would do so again pay to see the performances of David Copperfield, one of the great contemporary magicians.
Hatred by definition is a deep and emotional extreme dislike, directed against a certain objector class of objects. The objects of such hatred can vary widely, from inanimate objects to animals, oneself or other people, entire groups of people, people in general, existence, or the whole world. Though not necessarily, hatred is often associated with feelings of anger and disposition towards hostility against the objects of hatred. Hatred can become very driven. Actions after a lingering thought are not uncommon upon people or oneself. Hatred can result in extreme behavior: violence, murder, war. [Wikipedia]