DATE WRITTEN: Saturday, 2020-06-27
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL
BIBLE REFERENCE: 2 Corinthians 11:17-18
TRANSLATION: Living Bible (TLB)
BIBLE TEXT: 17 As the Scriptures say, “If anyone is going to boast, let him boast about what the Lord has done and not about himself.” 18 When someone boasts about himself and how well he has done, it doesn’t count for much. But when the Lord commends him, that’s different!
OBSERVATION: In the ministry of Jesus Christ, I’ve seen where churches and pastors have separated themselves from other believers since they are not of like faith, or under the same pastorate. Is that Christian, or is that aligned with the Gospel of Jesus Christ? As we meditate on the Scripture today, I believe that we will be reminded that only what’s done for Jesus will last, or make a difference in the hearts and lives of mankind. So even when we are commissioned to carry out the message of Jesus Christ, we must always seek to follow Paul’s example, when he said: ‘Oh that You may increase Lord, so that I may decrease!’
APPLICATION: Jesus tells us in the Scripture that if He be lifted up, He will draw all men unto Himself. Our Scripture today tells us that boasting of ourselves really counts as naught. So I believe that we could easily gather from the Scriptures that the work and ministry of the Lord Jesus is one that point others to Him and to the empty cross and tomb. We are mere carriers of the Gospel message. One beggar teller another beggar where to find bread. I once had a pastor who, after preaching His heart out, was greeted by multiple attendees that complimented him on the nice (new) suit he was wearing that day. The pastor told his leaders that he would never wear that suit again, because he felt like the people never heard a word the Holy Spirit spoke through Him that morning. Does that happen to you? Are you so caught up in the outfits, the pretty ladies or the handsome men who attend church, to really hear what the pastor is sharing from God’s Word? Another point to consider is that in accomplishing the work of our Master, we may cover some of the same ground already covered by another minister over recent weeks, months and years. However, if we choose to preach the gospel and Christ only; and if we choose to lift up Christ and Christ alone; and if we choose to allow Christ to speak through us and use us to reach those who need a Savior, then hearts will be drawn to the Mighty One. But I am convinced that this only works when it’s Christ and Christ alone that we minister about and lift up. When it becomes important for us to seek recognition, then we begin transitioning from Christian Ministry, to a cult that teaches one needs Christ plus what they have to offer. Think about it friends, when Christ saves us from our life of sin and selfish desires, and His Holy Spirit moves in to control and direct our lives, then its easy to see that when we open our mouths, our words are those of the One living in us. Our actions are so influenced with His motives and His ways that others will think of Jesus Christ only. I believe that the last thing we want anyone to gain from us, is our bad habits, thoughts and deeds done in private. Jesus is the only One worth passing along dear friend! So honor Him today and let Him have His will and way through you in everything you do or say, so that the world will become more like Him – and not us. Our jobs always entail spreading the joy of Jesus and His soon return, not the disappointing news of self with daily examples of how we fail. When we teach, preach and practice the life, works and saving power of Jesus, His work continues until He returns to take us home to glory. Churches often fall apart when the pastor leaves, who has lifted up and promoted self too much during his time while ‘ministering’ in your midst.
PRAYER: What a privilege is ours to have You reside in us and teach us Your ways, Holy Spirit. What an honor is ours to know Jesus, the One who hung on a cross as a demonstration of Your love for us. You provided the means for a sinner to seek forgiveness of sin and to be found righteous by our holy God. Thank You Jesus for doing that for even me. As I share that awesome news with others around me, may You touch lives and draw them unto yourself. Lord, please humble all those that spread Your Word, may we always seek to lift You up and give You praise for all that You are. This ministry is all about You precious Lord, may I always keep You first in my life and allow You to accomplish Your work, without my interference or distraction. AMEN!
FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog at https://NuggetsFromGodsWord.org 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 or listening to this devotional, please go to 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. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and see all of my posts, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!