Sunday, October 21, 2018

Truly His

Truly His

For a Christian, salvation is both an instantaneous reality and an ongoing process. When we surrender our lives to Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, we are immediately and permanently reconciled to God, forgiven of all sins, made righteous in His sight, indwelled with His Holy Spirt, adopted into His family, and so much more. Yet, from the time of our salvation on, we also look forward to the ultimate fulfillment of our salvation: receiving our eternal bodies and being in heaven for all eternity with God, His holy angels, and the saints from all time.

If you are His, you are truly His. And if you are truly His, there are five distinct aspects of salvation that have been, are being, and will be revealed in your life. These truths are taught throughout God’s Holy Word, but I have chosen five specific verses from the writings of the Apostle John that clearly communicate these truths.

Salvation is revealed in the life of a Christian as:

  • John 3:36 He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.”
    • In a gracious act of love, God the Father gives a person the faith to believe the gospel message of Jesus Christ. Christians know the truth about Jesus.
  • 1 John 5:12 He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life.
    • Once God reveals the truth about Jesus to a person, that person must choose to surrender to that truth. Christians accept the precious gift of saving faith in Jesus.
  • 2 John 1:9 Whoever transgresses and does not abide in the doctrine of Christ does not have God. He who abides in the doctrine of Christ has both the Father and the Son.
    • Every Christian falls short of God’s standards, gets discouraged, has doubts, experiences frustrations, etc. But a child of God will never permanently/definitively walk away from their Heavenly Father. Christians are in an enduring relationship with Jesus.
  • 3 John 1:11 Beloved do not imitate what is evil, but what is good. He who does good is of God, but he who does evil has not seen God.
    • The Word of God instructs a Christian about how and why they should become more and more like Jesus. The indwelling power and presence of the Holy Spirit enables them to do so. Christians obey Jesus – they obey the Word of God.
  • Revelation 21:27 But there shall by no means enter it anything that defiles, or causes an abomination or a lie, but only those who are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.
    • A born again believer in Jesus Christ will spend eternity in Heaven with God. Christians are joint heirs with Jesus.

These five distinct truths blend perfectly into
one absolute truth in the life of a Christian.


Loving Father, gracious King, I pray that the truth of Your Word presented in this devotion will encourage those who know you and draw to You anyone who does not. I ask this in the name of Jesus Christ my Lord. Amen.

Sunday, October 7, 2018

Digging Deep

Digging Deep

Throughout this year I have been struggling in my prayer time. In particular, I have had a very difficult time with confessing my sins. Not that I’ve had any trouble recognizing the sin in my life, but that I had a long list of sins that I confessed over, and over, and over again. Although I desired and attempted to be open and honest during my times of confession, I was finding myself to be distracted and frustrated. Eventually, I began to realize, that even though the sins I was confessing were legitimate, I was not digging deep enough. So, I asked God to search my heart and show me the things that really needed to be dealt with in my life.

To share what He showed me is difficult. But I believe this is necessary. Here are the four specific sins I am struggling with as I walk with Him today.

  • James 4:11 Do not speak evil of one another, brethren. He who speaks evil of a brother and judges his brother, speaks evil of the law and judges the law. But if you judge the law, you are not a doer of the law but a judge.
    • I didn’t think I considered myself to be better than anyone else, but I have constantly criticized others. And the really bad thing is, I have felt justified in doing so. What the Lord has help me to see is that, by being critical of others, I have been elevating myself. Instead of focusing on my walk with Jesus and how to become more like Him, I have made myself the judge of others.
  • Colossians 1:21 And you, who once were alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now He has reconciled
    • It has been a real slap in the face to realize that I am not nearly as grateful for the sovereign work of salvation God has done in my life as I fooled myself into thinking I am. I know this because I am beginning to see that I often take for granted how blessed and highly favored I am to be a child of the King. I didn’t, and don’t, deserve eternal life. My heart is not filled with gratitude.
  • Colossians 1:18 And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence.
    • Simply put, although I say that Jesus Christ is the most important person in my life, I often put other people, tasks, commitments and interests ahead of Him. ‘I deserve to relax. I’ll get to it later. I’m just too tired right now.’ I was a priority to God the Son when He died for me. I am still a priority of His. He is worthy of the time and energy I have, not leftovers.
  • 1 Peter 4:16 Yet if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in this matter.
    • I am not secretive about my faith in Jesus; but I am not bold and proactive either. I am way too concerned about the potential consequences of sharing my faith. What if I offend someone and never get to share with them again? What if I share my faith at work and lose my job? As much as I want to share, as much as I think I am not ashamed, I am not willing to pay the price.

I am embarrassed to reveal these sins. Yet I want so badly to have victory over them. I know I can only do so in His strength. I know the only reason to do so is for His glory. My prayer is, with the time and effort it has taken to evaluate and describe these specific sins, that now I will pray more fervently about them, more clearly confess and address them, by His power and grace turn from them, and for His glory overcome them.

Are you struggling with some specific sin? Have you considered asking God to help you dig deep to get to the root of the problem? I have only taken the first few steps of this difficult journey; but now I see a path forward to victory and know He is walking with me every step of the way.  Jesus is there for you to. Ask for His help!