Everything

Is it not from the mouth of the Most High
That both good and ill go forth?
Why should any living mortal, or any man,
Offer complaint in view of his sins?
Let us examine and probe our ways,
And let us return to the LORD.

Lamentations‬ ‭3‬:‭38-40‬

Anything that happens – good or bad – is under God’s control. And when bad things happen, how can we complain in light of our sin? Instead, we must examine our hearts deeply and return to God.

He is sovereign. He is in control of both good and bad things that happen. Our sins separate us from Him, even as His children.

We must examine ourselves, turn from our sin, and return to God. Otherwise, we may have a sense of entitlement, self-centeredness, a complaining spirit.

Then, our lives will be marked by Christlike humility.

Advertisements

We Are One

Therefore I, the prisoner of the Lord, implore you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing tolerance for one another in love, being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as also you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all who is over all and through all and in all.

‭Ephesians‬ ‭4‬:‭1-6

God has called us, saved us, and we should live in a way worthy of that calling. Since God Himself, who is over and in and through all – especially His church – is one, we must love one another and treat each other with humility, gentleness, patience, tolerance – be at peace – so as to preserve the unity that already exists in God. We are under one God – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit – we all share the same hope, faith, baptism. We are one. We must work to preserve that.

The unity of the body is one His highest priorities. We are bound together.

Treat other believers with humility, gentleness, patience, tolerance, love, peace for the sake of the unity of the Spirit.

When we lack gentleness, patience, tolerance, we divide the unity of the Spirit. We are not working diligently enough to preserve that unity.

God has made us one across all human barriers. He has given us all hope and salvation.

Trust His Goodness

Good and upright is the LORD;
Therefore He instructs sinners in the way.
He leads the humble in justice,
And He teaches the humble His way.
All the paths of the LORD are lovingkindness and truth
To those who keep His covenant and His testimonies.
For Your name’s sake, O LORD,
Pardon my iniquity, for it is great.

Psalm ‭25‬:‭8-11‬ (NASB)

God is good and righteous and trustworthy and honest and faithful and merciful and just and forgiving. He will give wisdom. He will save. He will pardon iniquity. This truth is powerfully expressed in Jesus Christ.

We can trust God in His goodness and uprightness to show us the way, to give us wisdom, to save us. If we humble ourselves and obey Him, He pardons our sin, even though our sin is great.

He will be merciful if we humble ourselves.

There is no need to doubt, to despair, to live without hope.

Let us become humble and obedient.

Know That He Is God

God is our refuge and strength,
A very present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear, though the earth should change<
And though the mountains slip into the heart of the sea;
Though its waters roar and foam,
Though the mountains quake at its swelling pride. Selah.
There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,
The holy dwelling places of the Most High.
God is in the midst of her, she will not be moved;
God will help her when morning dawns.
The nations made an uproar, the kingdoms tottered;
He raised His voice, the earth melted.
The LORD of hosts is with us;
The God of Jacob is our stronghold. Selah.
Come, behold the works of the LORD,
Who has wrought desolations in the earth.
He makes wars to cease to the end of the earth;
He breaks the bow and cuts the spear in two;
He burns the chariots with fire.
"Cease striving and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth."
The LORD of hosts is with us;
The God of Jacob is our stronghold. Selah.
Psalm ‭46‬:‭1-11‬ (NASB)

God is with His people and protects them no matter the disaster surrounding them. When enemies attack, he has ultimate power over everything and protects His people, destroying the enemy. Striving – against Him (as an enemy) or in His place (His fearful people) is pointless. He will be known and exalted. 

God has power over the violence of men, even over the very earth. He will be exalted. He provides protection, peace for His people, even in the midst of disaster and attack.

As children of God, we have no need to fear anything in this world. He is with His people. He is our stronghold. He has power over our enemy. He even has power over death, which He has already shown through Christ’s resurrection.

He will protect His people from destruction.

He is with us, in control, in power at all times. When we forget this truth, we fall to fear. We must cease our striving and know that He is God, that He is in control, that He is with us.

Grace Reigns

So then as through one transgression there resulted condemnation to all men, even so through one act of righteousness there resulted justification of life to all men. For as through the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, even so through the obedience of the One the many will be made righteous. The Law came in so that the transgression would increase; but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more, so that, as sin reigned in death, even so grace would reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

(‭Romans‬ ‭5‬:‭18-21‬ NASB)

Just as Adam’s sin resulted in sinfulness and condemnation for all, Christ’s act of righteousness on the cross leads to the righteousness and eternal life of many. The Law caused our sin to become greater, but God’s grace is greater still. His grace now reigns, bringing us righteousness and eternal life.

Like all humanity, sin ruled over each of us by death, except for the grace of God that now rules over those who believe by righteousness to eternal life, given by the sacrifice of Christ.

God didn’t write us off because of sin. He made a way, a way of grace that is greater than sin. He doesn’t just free us from the consequences of sin. He frees us from sin, makes us better, righteous.

His grace is greater than our sin and more powerful than I can imagine. We can’t allow it to rule over us. Grace reigns now.