Monday, May 12, 2008

Monday Morning Devotions

Ps. 103: 17-18- "But the mercy of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting on those who fear Him, and His righteousness to children's children. To such as keep His covenant, and to those who remember His commandments to do them.

In these two verses, God, through David, promises that His mercy will extend throughout the generations of those who love Him and keep His commandments. We say we have no problem with God being merciful to those who love Him. But do we have to obey Him? We are no longer under the Law. That is true. But some would say that in an age of grace, God will provide grace to those who love Him regardless how they conduct themselves. After all, grace is not the result of performance, correct?

What does John the Apostle say about this? He would agree that God's grace is towards those who love God. But what is it to love God, according to John? "For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome." (I Jn. 5:3) We love God by keeping His commandments. But how are we to obey God while we are still in the flesh? God gives us His Holy Spirit to empower us to obey. And while we are no longer under obligation to obey all the rules and regulations of the Old Testament, John, in his epistle, gives us concrete examples of how we can love God through loving our brothers and sisters. When we truly encounter God for the first time, we fear Him because we realize how unholy we are in His sight. As we experience the love of God in his forgiveness of our sins and His grace given to us so that we can obey Him, then we are free to love Him through loving our brothers and sisters. And this love on our part guarantees that God's grace will extend to generations to come.
(Scripture quotations from the NKJV)

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