As followers of Christ, we are to become living sacrifices. One way we do that is in our relationships with other people. We are to love, prefer, and do good to others even when they hurt us. An impossible calling, if we try to do it in our own strength!
Also, read about the danger of being lulled into complacency by the comforts and favor of worldly people.
Job 17 & 18
We’re closing in on two-thirds of the year gone and two-thirds of the Bible read! Congratulations to those of you who are still going!
But even if you just joined us, the Word of God is always profitable!
On to our Bible reading …
Verse 1 begins, “I beseech you therefore, …”
Paul is saying “therefore”—because of everything I’ve just told you in chapters 1-11, let these truths change the way you think and act. Then he goes on to tell us of some of the specific ways, our salvation should be lived out.
He begins by asking us to offer our bodies as “living sacrifices.” We’re called to sacrificial living.
I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service (v. 1).
“Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another; not lagging in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer; distributing to the needs of the saints, given to hospitality (vss. 10-13).
We’re to honor others and prefer them above ourselves, not with an “if I’ve got to” attitude, but “fervent in spirit”—enthusiastically, joyfully. This is something we should rejoice in doing out of gratitude for all Christ has done for us!
We should gladly serve the Lord, remain hopeful, believe the best of others, be patient when tempted to be impatient, be faithful in prayer, be a giver and show hospitality to others.
Verses 14 and following up the ante even more! We are to “bless those who persecute us” (v. 14), rejoice with those who rejoice and weep with those who weep (v. 15), associate with people of humble means (v. 15) instead of always trying to move up on the social ladder (v. 16), not think too highly of ourselves or get the idea we have arrived (v. 16), and refuse to repay evil with evil but return good to the very one who has hurt us (vss. 17-21).
It’s a high calling—an impossible calling in our own strength. Continue reading