[popup url=”http://blb.org/devotionals/me/view.cfm?Date=04/04&body”]» Today’s reading at Blue Letter Bible[/popup]
Morning: “For He hath made Him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him.” – 2 Corinthians 5:21
Paul, in the verse prior this key Bible verse exhorts us that we are ambassadors:
Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore [you] on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled to God.
Can you imagine an ambassador for some vacation resort, moping about with downcast expression – no one would want to go to his/her ‘little spot of heaven’. Instead, we see the Super Bowl heroes glowing about their anticipated trip to Disney World, and, by golly, we want to go there too!
What kind of ambassadors for Christ are we? Do we realize that we have been reconciled to God, through Christ? Do we have a desire to share this good news? Paul, in verse 19, states that the Lord has committed to us the word of reconciliation. It is precious good news, bought with the blood of the Lamb of God!
Spurgeon exhorts us this morning to revel in this good news:
O, I beseech thee, lay hold on this precious thought, perfection in Christ! For thou art “complete in Him.” With thy Saviour’s garment on, thou art holy as the Holy one. “Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us.” Christian, let thy heart rejoice, for thou art “accepted in the beloved”–what hast thou to fear? Let thy face ever wear a smile; live near thy Master;
Let us have great joy today, as ambassadors for Christ! I pray that we would all be bursting at the seams with the new wine of Christ’s new convenant.
Jesus prayed for us in John 17 (excerpts below):
But now I come to You, and these things I speak in the world, that they may have My joy fulfilled in themselves.
I do not pray that You should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one.
As You sent Me into the world, I also have sent them into the world.
“I do not pray for these alone, but also for those who will believe in Me through their word; that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me. And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one: I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that You have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me. “Father, I desire that they also whom You gave Me may be with Me where I am, that they may behold My glory which You have given Me; for You loved Me before the foundation of the world.
Let us meditate on our Lord’s great prayer to the Father, and know, with joy, that the Father heard His prayer and is answering it even today in our lives!
Evening:“Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord.” – Isaiah 2:3
The Lord wants us to ride on the high hills with Him!
Isaiah 58:14 Then you shall delight yourself in the LORD; And I will cause you to ride on the high hills of the earth, And feed you with the heritage of Jacob your father. The mouth of the LORD has spoken.”
Habakkuk 3:19 The LORD God is my strength; He will make my feet like deer’s [feet], And He will make me walk on my high hills.
And what, might we ask, is stopping us from this joyful encounter? Spurgeon suggests that the cares of this world, the thorns and briers, can choke off our joy, but that the Lord provides the sickle with which to cut the brambles down – communion with God and the things of His kingdom. And, Spurgeon asks, do we begin to love the chains that hold us down? He exhorts us even to leave our body, our worldly comforts and fleshly desires, that we might spiritually ascend to the mountain top for communion with God.
How can we attain this? How can we respond to this exhortation? Isaiah 58 has the answer, and that answer is Christ. Verse 14 starts with “Then you shall delight yourself in the LORD…”. Let’s back up a verse, and look at the “If” that comes before the “Then”:
Isaiah 58:13″If you turn away your foot from the Sabbath, [From] doing your pleasure on My holy day, And call the Sabbath a delight, The holy [day] of the LORD honorable, And shall honor Him, not doing your own ways, Nor finding your own pleasure, Nor speaking [your own] words,
The Christ, our beloved Messiah, is our Sabbath, and our rest can only be in Him. Only through Him can we cut down the briers and brambles. Only through Him can we have victory over our own weak flesh.
Paul, in Philippians 3:21 reminds us of the power of the resurrection:
who will transform our lowly body that it may be conformed to His glorious body, according to the working by which He is able even to subdue all things to Himself.
Is Christ, and His resurrection power, able to subdue you who believe? Are you one of His “all things”? You better believe it!