Remember the cartoon when the hound hunted Bugs Bunny? Bugs would don a sketchy disguise, which would confuse the dog. As the dog would pace and sniff around, he would ask the rabbit repeatedly in a country drawl, “Which way did he go, George? Which way did he go?” When I was a kid, I thought that was funny.
But, when that same type of question is applied to our contemporary spiritual condition and circumstances, it does not evoke humor, because the ways in which people are going is a serious matter. It is very uncanny how Scripture so accurately reflects and describes the ways people go spiritually.
For example, according to Scripture, a way in which people go is the “way of Cain.” In the Book of Genesis, we read how God stipulated to Cain and his brother, Abel, instructions for worship. Clearly, Cain was not obedient. He had his own agenda for dealing with God.
This is one way in which people go. They have set their own agenda for dealing with God. This is revealed by so many who say that they know they need to get saved, but for different reasons say that they will receive Christ when they are ready.
Years ago, a person told me that they figured they would receive Christ right before they died. I told them that it does not always work that way. And, it did not for him. The person died immediately from a heart attack. It was said by the witness standing by that “he was dead before he hit the ground.” If you are going in the way of setting your own agenda with God, think again.
The Scripture speaks about those who are going in the way of “the error of Balaam.” This is a curious Bible character to me told about in the Book of Numbers. Balaam was the prophet for hire that had the conversation with the donkey. Nonetheless, he evidently exercised a tremendous spiritual influence over Israel, essentially convincing them that committing sin did not matter.
Terry and I recently heard someone say, “There is no sin anymore.” That is the religious way so many of contemporary society are embracing. The bigger error, perhaps, is to think that sin has no consequences. If you are going in this way, you will someday, oh, most certainly, be thoroughly convinced otherwise, and it may come too late to make any change concerning it.
There is the way of “the gainsaying of Korah.” Korah was one of the leaders of Israel under Moses who stood up against the revealed will of God. Many people are going in this way. It does not matter to them what God has said in His Word, they are not going to listen to it.
Lastly, “there is a way that seems right unto a man…” These are they who think it is right to follow the advise of “just follow your heart.” You cannot follow your heart! The Bible says that your heart is desperately wicked. Jesus said that “out of the heart proceeds evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witnesses, and blasphemies.” If you ascribe to ways that seem right to you, think again.
These are not ways in which anyone should go, which leads us to consider the way in which we should go. It obviously has to do with Jesus Christ, who said, “I am the way…”
A missionary once told about hiring a guide to get to an isolated group of African people. After hours of enduring thick brush and sharp twigs, the exasperated missionary asked, “Are you sure you know the way?”
The guide pulled up his shirt, revealing a torso full of scars received from the rips and tears of going through jungle territory, and said, “I not only know the way, but I am the way!”
If we want to get through life the best way, and if we want to get to eternity the true way, then we need to follow The Way, Jesus Christ. The scars of Crucifixion He bears even now prove that He is the way we should go.
Pastor Ron Branch lives in Mason County and is pastor of Hope Baptist Church, Middleport, Ohio.