Our call to be godly is immediate, irresistible, and irrevocable. His Spirit calls us to action today.
Immediate- Our position in Christ, our direction in life, even our hopes and dreams are transformed upon salvation to reflect Jesus Christ.
Irresistible- The Spirit within us will not allow us to stay as we are, but will continuously spur us on to move higher up and further into Christ and His Call.
Irrevocable- Once we commit to Christ, we are His forever! His Spirit has taken up residence in our hearts and there’s no going back. Nor can we lose it through inaction or poor choices. He just begins again at wherever we are. Now THAT’S grace!
14 Like clouds and wind without rain
is one who boasts of gifts never given.
When we were saved, we promised the LORD that we would turn from sin and self and follow Him the rest of our lives. How are you doing? If you’re like me, you run warm and cool in your walk with Him, with occasional flares of hot, but also a few dips of cold. We must remember that this race we are in is a marathon, not a sprint. We all stumble, sometimes we fall, but as our pastor says, “we never fall off the ship.” Jesus keeps us by His grace. Not only that, He helps us up, doctors us, and encourages us to try again.
As I was reading chapter 25, I noticed that many of the verses are on how to treat each other in certain circumstances; I realized that I read a similar list in the NT. The difference is that in the OT, the list has to do with specific circumstances where in the NT, we are given general instructions that the Holy Spirit will apply as needed:
9 Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. 10 Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves.11 Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. 12 Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. 13 Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality. 14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. 15 Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. 16 Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited. 17 Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone [be above reproach]. 18 If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. 19 Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. 20 On the contrary:
“If your enemy is hungry, feed him;
if he is thirsty, give him something to drink.
In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”
21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. Romans 12:9-21
What conclusions can we draw from this passage?
- Be sincere with yourself and with others. Be authentic. If you’re gonna be like Christ, then hate ALL evil and love ALL good. Let’s not be selective.
- Devoted means “zealous or ardent in attachment, loyalty, or affection.” Is this how we are supposed to feel about all our brothers and sisters in Christ? How? Through the power of the Holy Spirit as each circumstance comes along. HE will help us to “honor each other above ourselves.” We certainly cannot in our own power (we don’t even WANT to!).
- We are to treat non-Christians as potential brothers and sisters in Christ by being joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Never are we to retaliate. In this we are most like Christ.
All the other commands expound on these verses. Notice that Paul even quoted out of chapter 25! That’s cool.
Jesus boiled our behavior down to this command: 34 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”
Let’s be about the Father’s business today by modeling Christ to this world. Either they will be drawn to Christ and be saved, or they will refuse Him and be judged. That is not our call. We are to be His messengers. Let’s be faithful to the Call.
Abba, I pledge myself anew to You and to being a light in a dark world. Please place me where my light can shine the brightest for You. I understand the seriousness of this pledge: it may require being in some dangerous situations. But I know where I am going when I die, and I know Who walks beside me all the way, so I’m not worried. “One more soul for You, Lord.” I love You and am devoted to You. Amen.