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Devotionals   

God's Will - Striving for Christ

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Test everything? Is that really possible? The bible is your map beloved. Anything that you encounter in the world can be answered in the bible. There are no grey areas in life. God is not ambiguous. The world wants to turn what is black or white into shades of grey because it is inside the grey areas that we can minimize sin and feel better about not living up to the standards that God expects from us. Sometimes the sheep analogy is taken too literally. Yes we are to listen for the voice of our shepherd, Christ. We are to know His voice so that we do not stray and we always follow him. That does not mean that we are to blindly accept what anyone has to say in the kingdom. We follow God, not man. We are not meant to be sheep in the sense that we do not discern; we do not test. We are not meant to live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God (Matthew 4:4).

 

Lastly, is it plausible to avoid every kind of evil? Probably not. The world is fraught with evil at every turn. The word to focus on is avoid. While we may not be able to never have to face evil we can actively work toward avoiding it. We can avoid places we know will tempt us. We can avoid people we know can tempt us. We can strive, for righteousness. When Daniel was taken into captivity in Babylon, he was to be provided with a portion of the king's meat and wine daily. The bible tells us how Daniel avoided this evil:

 

But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king's meat, nor with the wine which he drank: therefore he requested of the prince of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself. Daniel 1:8

 

The key here is he purposed in his heart. He made a conscious decision ahead of time, before the temptation came to him, to not sin. He avoided it successfully this way and we are to purpose in our hearts as well to avoid the king's meat. We are to purpose as best we can to avoid the trappings of sin offered by this world. That is God's will for us in Christ Jesus.

 

We may not be able to always be joyful, pray continuously, give thanks in all circumstances, test everything and avoid every kind of evil. The bible says that all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23). The most important thing to remember though is that just because we cannot conform to it completely, that does not change the fact that it is God's will for our lives. God wants us to be joyful always even if we fall short. He wants us to pray continuously, even if we may forget. He wants us to give thanks in all circumstances, even if we allow life to gain the upper hand sometimes. He wants us to test everything even if we occasionally lean on our own understanding. He wants us to avoid every kind of evil, even if we sometimes are disobedient. God's will for you is His will for you, regardless of whether we strive or become complacent.

 

We are always, striving to be Christ-like, knowing we will not quite achieve it until the day he calls us home or he returns.

 

 

 

Anthony Wade March 29, 2008

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Credentialed Minister of the Gospel for the Assemblies of God. Owner and founder of 828 ministries. Vice President for Goodwill Industries. Always remember that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him and are called according to (more...)
 
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