May I encourage you to get your spiritual ‘Nuggets’ to start your day off right? Pretty amazing that our awesome God would consider feeding even us with His Word! May I encourage you to read the whole devotional, and look for a blessing, friend!………
Today’s Bible Reference: 2 Timothy 3:12
Today’s Bible Text: Yes, and everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.
The Bible Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)
My Take Away: On reading the subject of this devotional, one may have thought that I would be giving you reasons to worship today, because surely I would be rejoicing over the joys of being a follower of Christ! And yes, there is much to rejoice in as we, Christians, think about our eternal home in glory with our Master. However, what Paul is warning about in this short verse, is what we might expect to see while Christian remains here on earth. Of course you might respond that of course, we spread the joy of the Lord with everyone, and we worship and adore our Savior at every opportunity. As true as that may be friend, notice carefully the verbiage used by Paul, for he said that for us to live a ‘GODLY’ life, we should expect persecution. Living a ‘godly’ life means that you are not just going to obey the commands of God, but you have committed to study His Word carefully and then live your life patterned after Jesus. Think about this friends, Jesus was not a ‘yes man’ to all that the Pharisees expected of Him, for He showed them the true meaning of unconditional love; of unselfish leadership; of placing others before themselves; of standing up for God, even if it may have damaged their political careers; and of changing certain rituals because they were not in the image or expectation of Jesus Christ. In short, Jesus upset the ‘apple cart’ every time He recognized wrong or ungodly living, regardless of who was caught in the crossfire. Let’s look at this from our current scenario. In almost every conversation with Christians, we recognize that we have mellowed a lot from the ways of our ancestors, because we have calculated that their ways were just too strict, or too literal of Biblical teachings. We allow things in our churches now that were unheard of in the early church. When last have you heard of a summit where church leaders would humble themselves before God and surrender totally to His will for the churches they are leading? How long would church leaders be permitted to stay in their roles, if they returned from a conference and started making changes, because they felt God was wanting them to help steer His church back to Him? Are we ready to challenge our work bosses because we see the need to stand up for what we discern to be ungodly principles and/or practices? I don’t believe we will find anywhere in the Bible that Jesus caved in to the practices of the day because He was being too literal with the commands of His Father. If we have committed ourselves to live just like Jesus, should we cave in to worldly practices and demands? How will we explain that to God on Judgment Day?
Prayer: Dear God, You have placed Your perfect Son before us so that we might have the pattern for life that would be pleasing to You. Yet, much like the Pharisees, we have designed our own pattern of living. Unfortunately not all aspects of our design meets the standards that were demonstrated by Jesus. Father, we want our lives and our churches to be aligned with You, yet we tend to place our own little spin to the perfections You have taught us. Please forgive us for doubting; for changing Your ways to conform with the ways of this world; and for assuming Your role, when we should really be seeking Your face and Your will. To win the world for Jesus Christ, I feel like we should first be willing to demonstrate before them a sincere ‘godly’ life so that they can clearly see what they are committing to. Lord Jesus, please have Your will and Your way in the lives of Christians today, beginning with me. Please work miraculously in our churches so that we may truly be the cornerstone of Your worldwide mission to reach the lost while we wait for Your Big Day when You will come to take us home with You. I ask these things in the name of Jesus, AMEN!
Footnote: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. 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 www.nuggetsfromgodsword.org 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!