The Art of Living Requires That We Know What Time It Is

Law and Order Liberty/Politics Personal Development Relationships Spirituality What Your Father Should Have Taught You

The art of truly living centers around knowing what time it is and applying the proper action to the proper time. This is what your father should have taught you.

We live in a world that doesn’t understand right from wrong anymore. Because they no longer know where to find the truth they seek to replace righteousness with simple rules that don’t require thinking or understanding. This is why our schools and work have mindless rules. These are those “zero tolerance” policies that substitute rules for thought and replace justice with dictatorial mandates that reflect neither justice nor what is right. It was Jesus that said “The law was made for man. Man was not made for the law.” He said this when the people of his day tried to substitute heartless, uncaring, rules for justice and compassion. They wanted to absolve themselves from thinking and taking responsibility for their own actions. Instead, they wanted to hold up rules as their new God. Instead of the God of Truth and Justice, they embrace rules that by their very inflexibility become inhumane. ( See: )

This seems to be a problem that reflects human weakness and the Bible is full of stories where people are obeying the letter of the law and denying the spirit of it, or conversely obeying the spirit and disobeying the letter. It is a problem that goes back through thousands of years of recorded history and is in the very first story in the Bible about humans. From the very beginning with Adam and Eve humanity has tried to weasel out of taking responsibility for their actions. “It’s not me its that woman you gave me.” “It’s not me its that serpent.” “Its not me I’m just following orders or the rules.” As if that somehow excuses our wrongdoing. Too many people are lazy and don’t want to learn from history nor do they want to struggle with messy ethical dilemmas so they take the cowards way out of “passing the buck” (blaming someone else, an organization, or a rule for their unwillingness to stand for what is right.) They, in direct violation of the Nuremburg code which made it clear that “I was just following orders.” Doesn’t absolve you of your legal responsibility and culpability for your actions. In our attempts to avoid taking personal responsibility for our own thinking and actions, some people instead raise rules to an idolatrous level and pretend that blindly following them is actually being virtuous. It seems to me Pontius Pilate did that when he literally washed his hands of the whole affair regarding the crucifixion of Christ. ( See: )

Real life is neither so simple nor so mindless as rules make it out to be. When America had strong ethical foundations our rules were short and general to give judges the room they needed to establish justice in their courts. As we wander farther and farther from the truth and righteousness our rules get longer and more convoluted. Rather, it is about taking the right action at the right time and we cannot absolve ourselves of our responsibility for our actions (or inactions,) simply by saying we obeyed the rules or the law. God does not call us to obey the law but to live for justice and they are not the same. The Bible is not about a heartless set of rules, although some try to make it such. Rather, it is about how to live and repeatedly tells us that we are responsible for our own actions, inaction, words, or silence.

Godliness, righteousness, and success are not about blindly following rules but by “letting justice roll down like waters and righteousness as an ever-flowing stream.” Righteousness is not about following rules but by taking the right action at the right time. Some actions, heinous in one instance, are righteous in another. Thus, a woman driving a tent peg through the temple of a man is murder in one instance yet in another it is a righteous act of patriotism. This, (like other events in the Bible,) righteousness versus wrong-doing is a matter of context. It is a matter of doing the right action at the right time and the godly man knows what time it is. That is the difficulty of life. Knowing what time it is and what action we must take. We will be held responsible for the choices we make and we will also be held responsible for refusing to make a choice and hiding from our responsibilities. Sooner or later we will pay for our decisions and the price will be higher if we take the wrong action at the wrong time. Ecclesiastes explains:

There is a time for everything,

and a season for every activity under the heavens:

a time to be born and a time to die,

a time to plant and a time to uproot,

a time to kill and a time to heal,

a time to tear down and a time to build,

a time to weep and a time to laugh,

a time to mourn and a time to dance,

a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,

a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,

a time to search and a time to give up,

a time to keep and a time to throw away,

a time to tear and a time to mend,

a time to be silent and a time to speak,

a time to love and a time to hate,

a time for war and a time for peace.

What do workers gain from their toil? I have seen the burden God has laid on the human race. He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end. I know that there is nothing better for people than to be happy and to do good while they live. That each of them may eat and drink, and find satisfaction in all their toil—this is the gift of God.

So what time is it?

Is it a time for war or a time for peace? A time to heal or a time to kill? A time to tear or a time to mend? Is it time to be silent or is it time to speak? These decisions are all yours to make – every day – large or small you choose to serve God and righteousness or you empower iniquity. And you will be held responsible for your decisions when you are called before the judgment seat. Did your decisions serve God or did you shirk responsibility for your own comfort? Will Christ say, “Well done, good and faithful servant. That is another star in your crown of righteousness.” O will your decisions (or lack of action,) cause our Lord to say, “Begone you doers of iniquity! I never knew you!” (On choosing to be a hero see: )

The Bible says they will know us by our fruit. Do we bear good fruit or bad? To know what action to take we must understand life and we do that by reading the great philosophers, the Bible, and through prayer and reflection, as well as listening to great men and psychologists like Jordan Peterson. I have spoken before about how John Wesley reviewed his actions each day to reflect on how he could better live out his beliefs. For instance, we cannot claim righteousness just because we have never fought or killed another human being because sometimes righteousness requires those actions in their proper time. Everything is beautiful in its time but it can be heinous if our actions or inaction allow someone to be murdered because we did nothing. At those times our actions are out of sync with what is needed and with what God placed us there to do. My father often read this passage from Ecclesiastes. It was one of his favorites and we read it at his funeral. For everything, there is a season and a time for every purpose under heaven. (See: )

Our only real task in life is to figure out what time it is and to act accordingly.

For instance. Now would be a good time to consider supporting our work here at SabersEdge. While everyone who works for SabersEdge Association was a trooper in the 8th Cavalry you don’t have to have actually been in the cavalry to become a SabersEdge Trooper. Anyone who has the spirit of a cavalier who loves honor and right is welcome to join us. Do you have the heart of a cavalrytrooper? Do you love freedom and truth? Join us! The Cavalry is Coming! Be part of the solution!

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