Closing the Gap 9.20.18

By September 20, 2018Daily Devotional

Week 37 Day 4

Pray:

Ask God to reorient you to Himself. Confess any known sin. Thank Him for His forgiveness. Be still and reflect on Jesus and His sacrifice for you. Ask the Holy Spirit to open your heart and mind to God’s Word. Pray for others in your life that they, too, would know and love God today.

Read:

2 Thess. 1:8-9 He will punish those who do not know God and do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. They will be punished with everlasting destruction and shut out from the presence of the Lord and from the majesty of his power.

Reflect:

Why would God bring lasting justice to those who do not know and obey him?  Many simple cannot believe that God would do such a thing. They believe that in the end all will be saved and none will finally be shut out from God’s presence. In order to believe that, they must disbelieve what is written here and elsewhere in Scripture.  It may appear to be mean-spirited to say and to believe such things are true, but what if these things were true? Would it not, instead, be mean-spirited to not say and believe these things if they actually are true? Imagine someone is walking toward a chasm and is in danger of falling to their death.  Perhaps they are really enjoying the walk and, in fact, are convinced that the way they are walking is going to bring them great joy if they just continue in the same direction. If you interfered with their enjoyment by telling them of the grave danger ahead, you would likely be accused of being mean and arrogant.  Who are you to tell someone where they should or shouldn’t walk? Who are you to ruin someone’s enjoyment of a path they have freely chosen? The question, once again, must always be “is this true?” If it is true, then what others think of your warnings is not as important as the very real danger they are in. You could be someone who is considered to be a nice, open-minded, and “good person,” when in fact you would be far from any of that.  If you know the path others are walking is a dangerous one and fail to tell them in appropriate ways, then there would be nothing “good” about that. This doesn’t change the fact that we are responsible to tell others the truth in ways that makes the truth look compelling. The urgency of the message does not take us off the hook to be compelling messengers. You must be willing to be disliked if you are going to love. But you must not be intentionally dislikeable, because there is nothing loving about that.

Pray:

(Personalize this prayer today; make it specific to the circumstances that face you.)

Ask God to lead you through His Spirit as you go through your day. Ask Him to bring to mind the truth of the gospel and its implications for what you will encounter today. Tell Him “Yes” to His will and ask Him for His power and protection to live this “yes.” Ask God to create and reveal opportunities to proclaim the good news today.

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