Archive for May, 2007
If you have read this verse before, you probably should go ahead and stop reading — I mean because you memorized it in fourth grade, clearly there is nothing more to gain from studying it.
Wait! Don’t go | I was just being sarcastic.
Actually, when I read 1 John 1 this morning, that was my initial thought — I know this already — until I was overcome by the intensity of what God does for us — every time we sin.
The verse is strategically smooshed (yes, it is smooshed) between two verses that teach very plainly that we all are sinners who do sin actions. John wasn’t writing to a bunch of heathen reprobates — he was writing to believers | people like you and me, people who were justified, had the righteousness of Christ applied to their accounts.
But yet, they sinned. I sin. You sin.
I John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
Did you ever stop and think about this: how is God just when he forgives? When I think of God’s justice, I think of the fact that God must judge sin. exactly
God is only just to forgive me because the flesh of Jesus was broken for me – because the blood of the Savior flows for me – because the sacrifice of Christ atones for what I did — for what I do.
try to see it clearly_
Ever live life on spiritual railroad tracks…times when stuff zips by your face and you just keep going on the same path — never stopping to re-evaluate? During those times, we need to see God clearly again_ however, we don’t need to only see God.
At times, our greatest need is actually to see ourselves. We need to see how good we are — the beauty within our own hearts — the purity of motive that drives our actions — the pursuit of our lives.
Look within your heart; I will too. What do you see?
Oh I see just how good I am — that in my flesh dwells no good thing — that my natural bent is toward lawlessness and lust — that my heart holds on to and nurtures thoughts of evil — that my life’s motives are self-ward — that my pursuit is often earthly — it is then that I see more clearly how amazing God is and who He is for me.
We can occupy ourselves for an entire day | reading the Scripture while looking for God’s attributes, talking about who we believe God to be, trying to see Him clearly. But if we don’t have a clear — painfully accurate — view of ourselves, then we will never consider God all that amazing. If, in our pride, we still consider ourselves the god of our world – if we still consider ourselves to have perfect, God-like qualities, then we will never stand in biblical awe of God_
try to see yourself clearly_
Leave your concerns where they are — come away and meditate on this great truth: Colossians 1:13
He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son
The reign of the darkness — where once the authority of sin and its leader had the power to act unhindered — it’s over. In other words, we are no longer associated with the former reign of terror | we have been moved; our citizenship has been transfered to a heavenly kingdom — the kingdom of his dear Son.
Is it possible that amidst the pressures of daily life that you have forgotten that Jesus delivered us from the reign of wickedness and that he has placed us in heaven above all authorities and powers? see it clearly again_
Pause for a moment in order to see grace clearly again | think about this: Romans 5:2
Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God (ESV).
Through him —Christ from verse 1 — we have access to the same grace that justified us — if we are justified, we have Christ — the one who is filled with grace. The word access could also be translated introduction. Think about that for a moment | the grace that justified us introduces us to the grace that God is continually bestowing upon us for living today!
Need grace today to overcome a trial or temptation that you seem to constantly battle? In the midst of taking fire from the weapons of the enemy, do you need to regain clear vision once again? Do you need grace to continue living?
some may – actually all of us do > without exception. Meditate on this throughout the day: you have access to all of God’s grace in Christ.
try to see it clearly_
Stop filling your mind with whatever is presently keeping you from pursuing God. Instead think about this: I Peter 5:7
Casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you (ESV)
Paint a picture in your mind of a man preparing for a long journey > his donkey is saddled and almost ready to go > he reaches down and picks up his last and most heavy sack and throws it onto the donkey’s back.
similar picture here _ take your anxieties — the ones you were never intended to bear alone, the ones that fog your mind and keep you from seeing clearly — take them and throw them on the Savior. He will carry them for you because He loves you. Whatever it is that is robbing you of your ability to pursue God | place it on Christ
Come away from your busy day for a second and think about this: Romans 8:32
He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? (ESV)
Meditate on this: The God who did not hesitate to redeem us with the blood of his Son is the same God who will continue to richly lavish us with his grace — he will give us all things. Think about a spiritual need in your life and drag it to God_
Sometimes I feel as though my life passes by so quickly — not that my years are going by too quickly, but at times I begin to perceive life through some sort of blurred screen, maybe a foggy lense. As I encounter difficulties…struggles within and seeming difficulties from without, my perception loses its sharpness. My schedule is often
busy, the word hectic is probably a better fit here. But who would say that their life isn’t? It seems as though life glides by like a racing subway car. I need to slow down and gain a fresh glimpse of my God, i.e I need to renew my perspective for living..these are the times that I need to see clearly again __