Do you truly belong to God?

March 20, 2015

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

He who belongs to God hears what God says. The reason you do not hear is that you do not belong to God.”
(John 8:47 (NIV))

God is calling each of us.

Do you hear Him?

God has a plan of redemption for us if we will only accept it.

Do you accept God’s grace?

Hearing and accepting are vital to your relationship with God, but do you belong to God?

Just what does it mean to belong to God?

Let’s consider your car. It’s only purpose is to serve it’s owner. I realize that a car doesn’t have a choice, but humor me for a moment. The car sits and waits. It has no purpose apart from it’s owner. Without the owner taking control, the car goes nowhere. It is useless. It may look nice sitting in a driveway, but it is not doing what it was designed to do. It may catch the attention of people, but it’s true purpose is lost without the owner providing the direction. Without the owner, the car is empty and devoid of life.

How is your life?

Do you belong to God?

Do you wait for a purpose for your life? Do you have a true direction that is guided by God? Does God’s purpose fill you and give you life?

Are you willing to do anything that God calls you to do? Does He possess your heart, your body, your mind and your soul or have you just given over a little of each? Think about the car once again. The owner can’t truly own the car without possessing the keys that give complete access to everything.

Have you given God the keys to your life?

Copyright 1998 – 2015 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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There is power in the blood!

July 19, 2012

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

In the case of a will, it is necessary to prove the death of the one who made it, because a will is in force only when somebody has died; it never takes effect while the one who made it is living. This is why even the first covenant was not put into effect without blood. When Moses had proclaimed every commandment of the law to all the people, he took the blood of calves, together with water, scarlet wool and branches of hyssop, and sprinkled the scroll and all the people. He said, “This is the blood of the covenant, which God has commanded you to keep.” In the same way, he sprinkled with the blood both the tabernacle and everything used in its ceremonies. In fact, the law requires that nearly everything be cleansed with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness.
(Hebrews 9:16-22 (NIV))

Without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness!

Do you think that this sounds barbaric?

What imagery does it bring to mind?

Do you agree with the examples that are given in this passage?

Now, think about the following sayings.

There is power in the blood.

There is life in the blood.

Blood brothers.

I could think of more, but I hope that you understand what I am getting at. Blood is essential to life. Without blood, life ceases. When a life is taken, most of the time, the removal of blood is part of the reason that the life ends. Even if that life is freely given out of choice, there is blood.

Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.
(John 15:13 (NIV))

Blood has become a symbol of the ultimate commitment. It is that commitment by Jesus that has brought us the ultimate in rewards. The blood of Jesus has brought us forgiveness if we will only accept it.

I have read this passage before, but the concept of a will did not sink in until reading it this time. Think about that from a worldly persepctive. God had something that He wanted to leave to His children, His creation. In worldly terms we understand that the heirs receive from the deceased through the will. God could not give grace to us without the formality. He needed to allow each of us to come to the inheritance freely. Inheritance is through blood. Jesus died so that we could inherit what He came to give to us. He arose from the grave to prove that He had the authority to give it.

This may sound a little morbid, but think of the offer of salvation as the reading of the will stating what Jesus left for you. Your personal salvation comes when you receive what He has given to you through His death and resurrection.

Always remember that there is power in the blood. There is life in the blood. Only through the blood can we be offered forgiveness.

It may sound legalistic, and to a point it is. Satan knows all too well about blood. He has been using it from the beginning of this world to draw people away from forgiveness. He has stated his case that all of humanity belong to him because of the sin of Adam and Eve. He makes that claim because of the inheritance through the blood. Jesus broke that inheritance and has offered us a new inheritance through His blood.

There is power in the blood!

Copyright 1998 – 2012 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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We need each other

June 15, 2012

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.
(Acts 2:46-47 (NIV))

Why do you think the early church grew in numbers and in power?

Did they rely on committees to design a program to reach the demographics of their region? Did denominational offices tell them to preach and teach from an approved sermon outline? Did they keep their worship services to one hour so that they could be first in line at the restaurants? Did they have the latest in sound systems and presentation systems so that the congregations could be entertained by the images that accompanied the message?

I feel that it is safe to say that the early church did not have any of these things, yet, the early church grew and embraced people continually as they accepted Jesus as their personal Lord and Savior. They relied on the power of God’s grace and mercy through the atoning blood of Jesus Christ to unite them. Once united in Jesus, God was able to freely do His Will among those who believed. Today, unfortunately, we tend to be divided by the petty differences that we see in each other instead of the unifying power that we should see in Jesus. We must focus on what God has done through Jesus instead of what each of us has done without Jesus.

We must unite in the power of Jesus and then we can reach the world as He desires for us to reach it. We must put aside our petty differences and remember that we, together, are the Body of Christ. We need each other. The early church knew this. We must learn this.

Now the body is not made up of one part but of many. If the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body. And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body. If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? But in fact God has arranged the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. If they were all one part, where would the body be? As it is, there are many parts, but one body.
(1 Corinthians 12:14-20 (NIV))

Copyright 1998 – 2012 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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