DATE WRITTEN: Saturday, 2020-07-18
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL
BIBLE REFERENCE: Ephesians 4:29-32
TRANSLATION: Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)
BIBLE TEXT: 29 When you talk, don’t say anything bad. But say the good things that people need—whatever will help them grow stronger. Then what you say will be a blessing to those who hear you. 30 And don’t make the Holy Spirit sad. God gave you his Spirit as proof that you belong to him and that he will keep you safe until the day he makes you free. 31 Never be bitter, angry, or mad. Never shout angrily or say things to hurt others. Never do anything evil. 32 Be kind and loving to each other. Forgive each other the same as God forgave you through Christ.
OBSERVATION: It is one thing for us to pay close attention to the qualities God, through His servant Paul, taught us earlier in this chapter, but I would dare say that we must also be very careful not to let those old sinful qualities find their way back into our lives either. After all, we have since accepted Jesus as Lord, and invited the Holy Spirit to live within us. Imagine the hurt and disappointment that comes with reintroducing our old habits and attitudes into the presence of a holy God. Meditate with me friend, as we allow the Word of God to speak to us today.
APPLICATION: As a child of God, we are to turn away from the sin that so easily devoured us before Christ, and instead make every endeavor to live the new life that God teaches us throughout His Word. It would be awesome if, from the day we accept Jesus as Lord, that we look forward to a life free of sin and filled with the awesome qualities of our Maker. However, we should never be naive enough to believe that the sin, hatred and ugliness of Satan and his demons that is happening all around us, will escape us. So although I know that God has the power to keep those who accept Him as Lord, safe and free from this world and its leader, yet I know that God has chosen to allow us free will while still here on earth. I believe this places a determination on us to stay true to the One in whom we have placed our faith and trust. I’m not sure how many ‘perfect’ ones might be out there and might even read this devotional, but according to the Word of God, there is only One who is perfect – Jesus, the Christ. Therefore, as long as we reside here on earth, and as long as we are surrounded by those who do not recognize our God, then I believe that some of their sin will drip on to us and may even cause us to stray from the Master at times. Although the list shown in verse 31 above may seem negative, and nothing that believers need worry about, I would strongly recommend that we keep this list in prominent view as a reminder. Any time that we feel our relationship with God is becoming slightly distant, check this list and ensure that some of our old ways are not sneaking back into our Holy Spirit filled lives. If it is, nip it in the bud immediately by asking God to forgive you and cleanse you of the distraction and sin, and to give you wisdom and strength on how to stay the course living totally dedicated to Him. Whatever you do, please don’t brush off the intrusion as minor, or slight, or easy enough for you to handle. God alone is the destroyer of all sin, not you. You are incapable my friend. If you still struggle with the ability to overcome, please seek an accountability partner – another Christian Brother (if you’re a man), or a Christian Sister (if you are a woman). If you are reading this devotional and can’t make sense of this, because you don’t know God, please, please, please, read my Footnote and seek to know Jesus personally. God is THE only answer to sin. Of course, I would be happy to hear from you and pray with you over this matter also, so feel free to email me.
PRAYER: It’s really easy to look back and see where You brought us from oh God. Thank You from the bottom of our hearts. While still here on earth, we see sin all around us, and way too often it tries to make its way back into our lives also, for we act up and treat others much like Paul was teaching against in our Scripture today. Please forgive us Lord, and teach us Your ways – each and every day of our lives. Please help us to quickly identify sin and do everything possible to distance ourselves from sin. As Your child, and as one who has the Holy Spirit residing inside of me, I am determined to serve You until the end of time, God being my strength and helper. Please touch the lives of those who are guilty of what is warned about above. Help us all to be pure in our relationship with You, so that unbelievers might be attracted to You. 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 might 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 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 you be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!