Do you accept the hard teachings?

July 25, 2016

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living

On hearing it, many of his disciples said, “This is a hard teaching. Who can accept it?”
(John 6:60 (NIV))

We don’t have the market cornered today on not being able to accept some of the teachings of Jesus. Many of those who heard the words straight from Jesus had much difficulty with many of the teachings. Why should we think that we would be any different?

In any classroom or subject of study, there will always be certain concepts that are more difficult than others to understand, accept and apply. This is true no matter what the subject, whether it is algebra, philosophy, medicine, or religion. Each subject has concepts that are easily grasped and applied, and at the same time, each subject has concepts that are difficult to grasp and apply. If everything were easily mastered, we would not have the satisfaction of a job well done when we do master a particularly difficult task.

The same is true of the things that Jesus taught us. Some things we can accept and apply almost instantly, while others we would prefer to ignore. We must not ignore the difficult teachings. It is these teachings that help to mature us in our faith. Perhaps it is also a maturation of our intellect as well, for the wisdom that comes from mastery will often lead us to understand and apply even more difficult teachings.

It is human nature to want to shun the difficult. We often take the path of least resistance. What do we get for this lack of effort? We do not get what God wants us to get. The next time that our human nature takes over and we want to ignore the hard teachings, we must remind ourselves of the nature of God’s Word.

All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.
(2 Timothy 3:16-17 (NIV))

Are you open to the hard teachings?

Copyright 1998 – 2016 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
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What will you receive in the new year?

December 31, 2012

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living

“No one sews a patch of unshrunk cloth on an old garment, for the patch will pull away from the garment, making the tear worse. Neither do men pour new wine into old wineskins. If they do, the skins will burst, the wine will run out and the wineskins will be ruined. No, they pour new wine into new wineskins, and both are preserved.”
(Matthew 9:16-17 (NIV))

Do you ever feel like the old wineskin, all cracked and brittle, unable to adapt and bend?

Life throws us things that we would rather not have happen. If we let them, these things can harden our hearts and turn us into the very thing that we long not to be. We become the angry man or woman that we all have known in our lives. We become the person that no one desires to be around. We become all bitter and brittle in our lives and in our dealings with others.

Our “wine” has turned to vinegar and we did not even realize it !

Just what is that “wine?” It is a life lived in Jesus. It is the blooming of the grace that He has given us. It is the maturation of the fruit of the spirit, and if we are not careful, our “wine” will become tainted and bitter.

Every wine skin grows old. Every wine skin will loose it’s ability to flex and grow. And just as a wine skin must be replaced, we can replace our hearts. We can renew our hearts. God has given us grace. If we grow bitter, we can repent and receive a new wine skin. A wine skin that will be able to hold all of God’s blessings and grace that He can bestow.

God desires to fill each of us with new “wine.” Are you ready to receive it?

Copyright 1998 – 2012 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
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