Are you truly free?

July 2, 2019

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Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living

Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and aliens, but fellow citizens with God’s people and members of God’s household, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.
(Ephesians 2:19-22 (NIV))

This was written to the church at Ephasus when Gentiles were not looked upon by Jewish believers as true heirs to the promises of God. Paul’s words were meant as a reassurance to those people at Ephasus, as well as to those of us today, who had heard all of the legalistic requirements that some people were trying to impose upon them.

Other people were saying that the promises fulfilled through Jesus Christ were only available to the Jews. Paul corrected these wrongs and set the record straight so that the freedom from the Law that Jesus brought would not be compromised by people who did not understand.

Jesus came as a means of God’s grace. Grace does not require legalism or any other human intervention in order to work. It does not apply only to a certain group of people. It is available to everyone who will ask. As we remember a day that is celebrated for our political freedom, we must not lose sight of the true freedom and the one who brings it!

Are you truly free?

Copyright 1998 – 2019 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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Where do you find yourself going?

August 4, 2015

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

Dear friends, I urge you, as aliens and strangers in the world, to abstain from sinful desires, which war against your soul. Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us.
(1 Peter 2:11-12 (NIV))

Think about this passage for a moment.

Perhaps a better way to look at this is to replace the word aliens with the word tourists.

Let me explain.

The last time that you went on a vacation, did you seek out the sinful areas of the places that you visited or did you seek the places of beauty? A tourist does not go somewhere seeking to find the sin. They go seeking to see something of beauty that is different from what they are used to. Some love to go to the mountains. Some love to go to the beach. Others love to go on cruises, but no one goes looking to find the depravity of the areas that they visit.

We, as members of the Body of Christ, are aliens, we are tourists, in this world. We should not be focused on the sin that has overtaken the world or we may find ourselves falling into that very sin.

We are to remain blameless!

I know that this is impossible in our humanity, for we are all fallen. However, we have one who intercedes for us so that we can rely on His strength instead of ours. When we are facing temptations within this world, rely on Jesus to see you through them. Don’t allow the enemy to trick you into going somewhere that you don’t want to go.

Accountability, fellowship and community are important.

Think back on the tourist concept. When you are a tourist, do you go alone or do you go with other people? Being alone is dangerous. The enemy will recognize that you are alone and vulnerable. That is when sin has the opportunity to arise.

Where do you find yourself going?

Copyright 1998 – 2015 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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What do your eyes see – the world or your salvation?

June 10, 2015

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

For my eyes have seen your salvation,
which you have prepared in the sight of all people,
a light for revelation to the Gentiles
and for glory to your people Israel.
(Luke 2:30-32 (NIV))

When Simeon spoke these words, Jesus was only a newborn infant and Mary and Joseph had brought him to the temple to consecrate him to God. Simeon had been looking for salvation all of his life. Perhaps that is why he so readily recognized it when it was presented to him, even though, to most people, Jesus was simply a baby just like all of the others. Simeon was able to look beyond the obvious and see the miraculous.

With all that is going on in the world, what do you see?

Do you see what the news media wants you to see or do you see things from God’s perspective? Are you aware of all that is going on in the world, most of which simply is ignored because it doesn’t fit into the politically correct agenda? Have you grown tired of all of the so called news and entertainment that appears to be designed to keep you from paying attention?

The Body of Christ has been told that we are aliens in a foreign land. Do you recognize the world in which you live? Does it look anything like what it did when you were a child? Do you long for what Simeon longed for – to be in the presence of your Savior?

The world is capable of enticement. Focus on Jesus! Focus on your salvation!

Copyright 1998 – 2015 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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Out of place

March 14, 2012

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and aliens, but fellow citizens with God’s people and members of God’s household
(Ephesians 2:19 (NIV))

Have you ever felt out of place? Have you ever felt like you simply didn’t belong where you were?

What was it that made you feel out of place? Was it language? Traditions? Surroundings? Perhaps it was something as simple as your favorite beverage was not available and they didn’t even know how to make it.

There are many reasons that we may feel like foreigners and aliens in this world, but don’t get discouraged. We have a home where we will never feel out of place. We will never feel like we do not belong. Feeling like foreigners and aliens comes when we do not feel that we are understood. Familiarity makes us feel at home. We feel at home when we are welcomed as part of the family. God welcomes us in this manner. He welcomes us as part of His family. He knows us better than we know ourselves. He makes us feel at home and at peace.

He gives us a peace that passes understanding!

The next time that you feel out of place, stop and thank God for this reminder. We will often feel out of place in this world that has been turned over to sin. If we felt at home in this world, we would not have a home as a member of God’s household.

If we felt at home in this world, we would be happy in our sin.

Copyright 1998 – 2012 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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No longer foreigners to God

October 17, 2011

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and aliens, but fellow citizens with God’s people and members of God’s household, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.
(Ephesians 2:19-22 (NIV))

What a heritage! What a wonderful gift!

We did not earn this right to be a part of this magnificent temple. It was a gift that no one could earn. It was granted to us because we accepted Jesus Christ as our personal Lord and Savior. I don’t know of any other gift that would be so freely bestowed upon us. It is the ultimate gift paid for by the ultimate sacrifice for our ultimate salvation. We cannot claim any bragging rights to this gift, for it was not of our own doing that we are now a part of God’s holy people.

Don’t let this gift make you think that you are better than those who have not accepted it. Where would you be if those who lead you to Jesus had taken that attitude?

Copyright 1998 – 2011 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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