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

Post Date:

Thursday, 2017-05-04
SCRIPTURE

From:

Mark 7:20-23 (TLB)

Text:

20 And then he added, “It is the thought-life that pollutes. 21 For from within, out of men’s hearts, come evil thoughts of lust, theft, murder, adultery, 22 wanting what belongs to others, wickedness, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, pride, and all other folly. 23 All these vile things come from within; they are what pollute you and make you unfit for God.”
OBSERVATION:
Jesus had to get the Pharisees straight on their line of thinking, for they went out of their way to criticize Jesus and His followers for not following lots of manmade rules, while all the while harboring awful thoughts inside of them. As we study this today, I can assure you that we are no different, and would therefore recommend that you do some soul searching and honestly consider whether you are truly fit for meeting the God of this universe.
APPLICATION:
Before we think too critically of the Pharisees, please allow me to challenge us to think about the many unwritten rules that we use when analyzing (judging) the behavior of those that we come into contact with. Often this really gets into our pious minds as to whether we think a person is fit for the kingdom of God. We tend to consider whether the place a person visits make them unfit; the words they say that might offend God; the people they hang around, that makes them guilty by association; the church they attend or the frequency of their weekly visits to that place of worship; or even the duration of their time meditating on God’s Word. Does this sound familiar friends? What do you think, do we really need God to judge our friends? So what exactly is it that God is teaching us here? He certainly is not teaching us how to judge someone, so we could erase that thought! Instead, I believe that God is teaching us to:

  • Be careful of what we fill our minds with. If we seek God’s face on a regular basis, then we will quickly conclude that we are so unworthy. If we humble ourselves before Him and seek His guidance and His direction for our lives, and we become submissive to His perfect will, then perhaps we will see Him steering us in right paths. If we fill our minds with godly things, then we will begin thinking like God and depending on Him more and more. His Word will help us to flush out those evil thoughts and desires that bombard us every day that we are in this wicked world;
  • Be the eyes, hands and feet of Jesus to those that we come into contact with. Let’s remember that each one is so valuable in the eyes of Jesus that He actually ‘gave up His life for us’. What does that mean? Friends, He had the power to raise the dead, heal the sick and make the crippled to walk again. He also had the power to wipe out the whole bunch of those that beat on Him and took Him to Calvary to be hung on a cross in mockery before the world, yet He made the sacrifice anyway. If He thought enough of each one of us to do that, how dare us to exclude some from that love? If they are special in God’s sight and worthy of the sacrifice of His precious Son, and we are endeavoring to be examples of that same Jesus, then we must look on the best and worst of mankind in the same light as He did. All are precious in His sight, and so should they be in ours.
  • Use the list of items quoted in these verses to help identify when we are off-track in our minds. To arrive at this point, we have probably already gone through many of the things I have already mentioned. Let us therefore present ourselves to God and ask Him to cleanse us and give us a new mind – one that is so filled with His grace and His mercy, so that our minds might be renewed, and refilled with the things of God and not of this wicked world.

This Brother cannot tell you what you need to do to align yourselves properly with God. So present yourselves to God and ask Him to assume, or resume leadership in your life. Ask Him to fill you with His power and His grace, so that others will see Jesus in everything that you say, hear or do, knowing that He will ultimately reflect in the way you speak or act around others.

PRAYER:
Lord Jesus, who is man that You would sacrifice Your life for us? Who is man that You would use us to minister in Your name and share Your gospel with others? Lord, we want to be fit vessels that will represent You well before a lost and dying world, but we can’t do it on our own. To be filled with You, we must totally surrender ourselves to You and ask You to assume control. Please work in and through us to accomplish Your perfect will for mankind, especially my family and friends within my realm of influence. The glory belongs to You as Your perfect will is accomplished oh Lord. 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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