Not doing, Yes doing
I found the following scripture an interesting Möbius loop.
He saved us, not because of the good things we did, but because of his mercy. He washed away our sins and gave us a new life through the Holy Spirit. He generously poured out the Spirit upon us because of what Jesus Christ our Savior did. He declared us not guilty because of his great kindness. And now we know that we will inherit eternal life. These things I have told you are all true. I want you to insist on them so that everyone who trusts in God will be careful to do good deeds all the time. These things are good and beneficial for everyone. – Titus 3:5-8
Notice what I highlighted.
We were not saved because of the good things we did. But we are now ordered to be careful to do good deeds all the time.
The difference is the reason. It isn’t about us. It is about others. Even our salvation is about others. We could not do it, someone other than us, Jesus, had to do the good deed for us. Now we are free as a result of his good deed to do good deeds for others too.
Father, may I do good deeds all the time. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
For everyone. Jan
God, Jesus, the Bible
Most Sundays, as we drive home from church we’ll ask the boys what their lesson was about in the youth service. Their answer is usually something like, “God, Jesus, the Bible.” Informative huh? Well at least the 40,000 foot view is the correct one. A bit more detail would be nice.
Sometimes though we don’t need much more detail. We just need to look in the Bible to see what is plainly written there. One question that has often been asked is why do we say that Jesus is God? One very clear answer is in the verse below.
We should live in this evil world with self-control, right conduct, and devotion to God, while we look forward to that wonderful event when the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, will be revealed. – Titus 2:12b-13
Who’s glorious revelation is Paul telling Titus to look forward to? Our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ!
What do you know? I guess the answer is God, Jesus, and the Bible; because Jesus is God, the Bible told me so.
Father, thank you that Paul spelled it out so clearly to Titus. May I not get too bogged down in details of unimportance, and truly look forward to your glorious appearing. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
What was your lesson about? Jan
Paul instructed Timothy to be sure that he doesn’t make a new believer a leader (1 Timothy 3:6). I think the following verse, where Paul is telling Titus how to choose leaders, gives some more insight as to why.
He must have a strong and steadfast belief in the trustworthy message he was taught; then he will be able to encourage others with right teaching and show those who oppose it where they are wrong. – Titus 1:9
If the believer does not have a steadfast belief, one that is fixed, unwavering, unchanging, firm, and unswerving, he can be discouraged into wrong teaching. He could even be moved off course into a rejection of his faith.
Like trees, we must have deep roots to withstand the onslaughts of the enemy. There is a reason our Lord sent his disciples out two-by-two.
Two people can accomplish more than twice as much as one; they get a better return for their labor. If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But people who are alone when they fall are in real trouble. – Ecclesiastes 4:9-10
When one wavers the other can help steady his frail friend. But pity the man who is alone – especially the inexperienced acolyte.
Father, may we be wise in whom we promote to more responsibility. Please grant us the wisdom needed and the courage to say no when it is best. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Steadfast is a firm foundation. Jan