The Holy Bible
15 Our lives are a Christ-like fragrance rising up to God. But this fragrance is perceived differently by those who are being saved and by those who are perishing. 16 To those who are perishing, we are a dreadful smell of death and doom. But to those who are being saved, we are a life-giving perfume. And who is adequate for such a task as this?
(Bible Translation and Location: New Living Translation – 2 Corinthians 2:15-16)
Paul shared that their (his and Timothy’s) lives were a sweet fragrance to God and to the Christians they came into contact with, however to the non-Christians, their lives were as the dreadful smell of death and doom. In applying this scripture today, I want you to look beyond the many books written by Paul, and the many churches he started, and remember that Paul had no advantage over us, and our ability to be the same sweet fragrance for God today. When God looks below the surface, does He still smell the sweet fragrance of holiness in our lives? Is God standing tall and proud when we find ourselves in a tight spot, knowing that we will still represent him well – exude the sweet fragrance of His Holy Spirit, in spite of the circumstances or who we might be with? Are we bold enough, and firm enough in our faith, that God is proud of us even in the presence of non-Christians, or do we meld into the audience and try to be their buddy? Of course, the words “a sweet fragrance” were only used as a metaphor and really could, or should, be substituted for the words “very pleasing to”. The bottom line friends, is that when we claim to have accepted Jesus as our Lord and Savior, we are to live our lives very pleasing to God, or our actions and words are to be like a sweet aroma to God. As you reflect on the opposite to these, I believe you will get an even better picture, as you will quickly realize that in no way do we want to be a repugnant odor to our God, especially after having received His forgiveness of our sins, and our celebration of the great sacrifice He paid so that we could be saved in the first place. Friends, we have a choice. What will it be for you? Be reflective of whose you are (Christians), or to my non-Christian friends, accept Jesus as Lord and be loyal to His cause, creating a sweet aroma back up to Him? Or are you more inclined to refuse Him and stifle Him with the stench of sin, unbelief and/or disobedience?
Lord Jesus, what a challenge these verses present for us today, because there are so many circumstances where we are totally engulfed in the world and its demands through our friends and coworkers. However, I believe that Paul also found it impossible to be holy, especially without Your powerful hand upon his life. Therefore please remind us often of our power source that enable us to be good examples of Yours and to act Godly, even under extreme circumstances and opposition. Thank You for being available to us, and willing to work through such weak vessels. May we always be mold-able and usable by You, is my sincere plea today. For the non-Christians who might be led to this devotional today, may they recognize their need for You in their lives, surrender their lives to You, and find peace in knowing You, is my humble prayer today that I ask in the precious name of Jesus, my Lord, 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 so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will 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 blogger.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely 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, Sebring, FL!