Daily Devotions from The Word Of God… From the heart of Ed Algreen

Post Date:

Thursday, 2017-01-19
SCRIPTURE

From:

Matthew 7:21–23 (MSG)

Text:

“Knowing the correct password—saying ‘Master, Master,’ for instance—isn’t going to get you anywhere with me. What is required is serious obedience—doing what my Father wills. I can see it now—at the Final Judgment thousands strutting up to me and saying, ‘Master, we preached the Message, we bashed the demons, our God-sponsored projects had everyone talking.’ And do you know what I am going to say? ‘You missed the boat. All you did was use me to make yourselves important. You don’t impress me one bit. You’re out of here.’
OBSERVATION:
This 7th chapter of Matthew records Jesus teaching a crowd that followed him even to the mountains. Addressing this crowd was probably much like one of our pastors who address our congregations each week. However, Jesus knew the hearts and intentions of each one gathered, so He was able to speak directly into their lives. In this particular instance Jesus addressed folk who may have used church, or used their act of following Him as an act to brag about. They knew what it took to be recognized as a follower, and they thought they knew what to say, although Jesus exposed that thought in His teaching here. Jesus pulled no punches! While I believe He was honored that so many wanted to be near Him and hear His teaching, He also knew that He had to correct their misunderstanding of what it takes to meet His Father face to face on that Day.
APPLICATION:
Much like the crowd that Jesus taught at the edge of the mountain, I believe that many churches are packed with folk each week that may still be under the misguided understanding that church attendance; giving to their local church; wearing a big cross as jewelry every day; or using church-like words interspersed in conversation throughout their day, would convince the world that they know Jesus in a very intimate way. The problem with that, is that the world sees through your pretense almost as much as God does. Friends, it’s not the world that we must impress, and this may come as a shock to you, but it’s not Jesus that you must impress! Jesus knows your heart, friend. Therefore He knows very well when our words are misaligned with our heart and our inner person. Jesus wants us to change from the inside out, and not vice versa. There is only one way to the throne of the Father, and that’s through accepting Jesus, the One whose blood was spilled at Calvary – the sacrifice that He made for the salvation of folk like you and me. You see, this is really simple. As we seek God’s face and His forgiveness, our lives will change from the inside out. His work in our lives, and our aim at living obedient lives to the teachings and example of Jesus Christ, prepares us with honest words and actions where the world will know and believe on the only Son of God, Jesus the Christ. Living that type of life means that it’s not something we calculate, or conjure up, but rather, the love of the Savior that resides inside of us spills out in our words and actions so that the world will know who Jesus is. Are you on the right track friends? If not, I encourage you to go back to the foot of the cross and talk with Jesus about your salvation. Reaffirm your faith in Jesus, so that you can stop trying so hard. Let Him have His way in your life.
PRAYER:
Lord Jesus, we are nothing without You, so of course our efforts without You and Your power will have no impact on unbelievers. Time is precious to all of us, and Lord we would never want to merely pretend to be Your followers to impress those around us, for we are very much like them when witnessing or evangelizing in our own strength. Furthermore, people are smart enough to see through our pretense, for only You can speak to the hearts of Your children. Lord, I commend myself to You again, asking that I do nothing in my own strength, but that I seek Your face daily and allow Your precious Holy Spirit to guide my lips, my actions and my whole self, so that others will see Jesus, not this humble, helpless man. Please tender the hearts of my readers so that they too may realign themselves with Your will for their lives. The world needs You, precious Lord, not us. Use us if needed, but please work in the lives of those that we will come into contact with today, for I ask this in the wonderful, matchless name of Jesus, AMEN.
FOOTNOTE:
There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’.  If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog could indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely to subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

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