Tuesday, July 26, 2016
This can be a little tricky to answer. I will do my best. In Jesus Christ we become perfect in the eyes of God. How is that possible. When you become a follower of Jesus, when God looks at you the shed blood of Jesus has covered your sin and you are righteous in the sight of God, not because of anything you have done but all because of the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus!
Now in day to day life as a believer, no one is perfect. God even tells us this in His Word:
1 John 1:8 If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.
But we are to strive for perfection and be like Christ in every area of our lives! Look what the Bible says about this:
2 Corinthians 7:1 Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.
Hebrews 6:1 Therefore, leaving the discussion of the elementary principles of Christ, let us go on to perfection, not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God,
2 Corinthians 13:11 Finally, brethren, farewell. Become complete. Be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you.
Did you catch those important words? Perfecting holiness, go onto perfection, become complete! All those are talking about a continuing action of working towards being like Jesus!
So we are perfect in Christ by His work, but on this earth we work for that perfection everyday by imitating Christy to the best of our ability. We fail often but we confess our sin and dust ourselves of and get back to work! May we do as Paul instructed:
1 Corinthians 11 Imitate me, just as I also imitate Christ.
Monday, July 25, 2016
These two characteristics are important in one’s life towards both man and God!
Proverbs 3:3-4 Let not steadfast love and faithfulness forsake you; bind them around your neck; write them on the tablet of your heart. 4 So you will find favor and good success in the sight of God and man.
Of course as a follower of Jesus we must be faithful to Him. He is our King and Savior! We also must have a love for Him like no other! He gave His life for us after all! I am always reminded of where our love for Jesus should be compared to man by there verses:
Luke 14:26 “If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple.
Jesus does not want us to hate anyone especially our own family but He does expect our love and faithfulness to Him be way above what we have for anyone else! Can you say that?
We also need to be a person of love and faithfulness to our fellow man. We are no better than our words and our actions. Jesus tells us to be the light of the world and this involves being a person of love and faithfulness to others.
Matthew 5:16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.
Jesus was all about love and faithfulness and as followers of Him, we are to imitate Him! He is our example of a godly life! Are you a faithful person and a demonstrator of love to others?
God tells us when we are faithful and a lover of Him and our fellow man blessings will come in the proverbs verse at the beginning of this devotion. Are you reaping those blessings?
Thursday, July 21, 2016
One of my favorite authors J.C Ryle reminds us that being a true Christian takes two things: “Surely the Scriptures teach us that in following holiness, the true Christian needs personal exertion and work--as well as faith.” Now Faith is the key to salvation and is the only thing that saves, but once we are saved it takes work to live and grow in our faith.
Paul said: “the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God” Gal.2:20 and He also said “ I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.” 2Tim.4:7. And 1 Corinthians 9:25-27 “And everyone who competes for the prize is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a perishable crown, but we for an imperishable crown. 26 Therefore I run thus: not with uncertainty. Thus I fight: not as one who beats the air. 27 But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified.”
So we see in the Word that as followers we must first have faith in Jesus! But then it takes work as a follower to be obedient to the works God has called us too.
Are you working? It really isn’t an option for the true Christian!