Discipline

Could God Love Me

03/12/2019

LISTEN

Have you ever considered that the Heavenly Father delights in Jesus? Yes, Jesus is God’s DELIGHT as Isaiah 42:1 points out. “Behold, My Servant, whom I uphold; My chosen one in whom My soul DELIGHTS.” In a world full of evil, what a blessing it must be for the Heavenly Father to look at Jesus and say, “My soul delights in You.” Reading His words stirs in me a longing for our Heavenly Father to delight in me, but I’m so mindful of my sin, I can’t imagine that being the case. Then again, could our Heavenly Father delight in us, while not delighting in our sin? Yes.  Proverbs 3:12 says, “For whom the LORD loves He reproves, even as a father corrects the son in whom he delights.” Our Heavenly Father has set His affection on us. He loved us even before we were saved. (John 3:16) Now that we are saved, He loves and corrects us; like we love and correct our children. So while celebrating God’s pure delight in Jesus, we learn what is pleasing to our Heavenly Father and how to walk by His Spirit so we can increasingly delight Him.

Heavenly Father, thank You for Jesus, in whom Your soul finds pure delight. Thank You for delighting in us while we learn to walk in Your ways. 

Is Lip Service a Big Deal to God

01/03/2019

LISTEN

A person who is not a Christian once challenged me and asked why believers talk about God’s love but never His wrath. I thought about his question, and realized that I’m guilty of that very thing. Think about all the wonderful ways we look at God’s love, gentleness, and favor. Today, however, the context in which God’s actions are described as WONDROUSLY MARVELOUS is a reference to His judgment on people who claim His name, but simply give lip service to Him. God uses the prophet Isaiah to call them out in  Isaiah 29:13-14. “Then the Lord said, ‘Because this people draw near with their words and honor Me with their lip service, But they remove their hearts from Me, and their reverence for Me consists of tradition learned by rote, therefore, I will once again deal marvelously with this people, WONDROUSLY MARVELOUS.'”  He goes on to warn them of the consequences of their lip service and rote worship. We might want to relegate our Creator’s wrath to the Old Testament, but Revelation 16 speaks of God’s judgement being poured out on the earth in a future day. We may wonder, “Is our behavior and sincerity of worship a big deal to God?” The answer is, clearly they are.

Lord, You alone are worthy of our praise. You extend mercy to those who call on Your name, but also discipline in WONDROUSLY MARVELOUS ways those who give You lip service and rote worship. Forgive us and prompt us daily to live by Your Spirit.

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