Christian devotions in the Daily-Message

Christian devotions in the Daily-Message

Avoid evil, do good

“These six things doth the Lord hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, an heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief, a false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren.”

Proverbs 6:16-19

Interestingly, when we look at those things God hate, pride is mentioned first. When someone overestimates himself (and automatically therefore underestimates others) this points strongly to arrogance and conceit, as well as a tendancy towards evil and sin. Arrogance is the root of evil. Therefore God also clearly defined this in 1 Peter 5:5 “Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble.” Pride is not only a negative characteristic of unbelievers, even some Christians possess this characteristic. Sometimes a pious pride is worse still, because it goes against everything that contains God's blessings. God responds as it were “sensitive” towards every form of pride and arrogance – Isaiah 13:11 “And I will punish the world for their evil, and the wicked for their iniquity; and I will cause the arrogancy of the proud to cease, and will lay low the haughtiness of the terrible.” Through pride one thinks one can be emancipated from God. That was also the trigger for satan's rebellion and his proud sin against God (Isaiah 14:14). In submitting to the LORD we prevent the risk of veering off and looking down upon others arrogantly and thus learning and understanding nothing at all. Only a humble and thus insightful person can hope to receive God's mercy, His promises and active help. The pride of the heart is portrayed in how we behave. We read in 1 Peter 5:6-7 “Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time: Casting all your care upon Him; for He careth for you.” We cannot follow Jesus if we exalt ourselves and esteem ourselves as important.

No-one can simultaneously exalt himself and Jesus Christ! When we read in the Bible what God hates, it is easy to recognize on the other hand what God loves and would like to see in us. In Zechariah 8:16 we read similarly: “These are the things that ye shall do; Speak ye every man the truth to his neighbour; execute the judgement of truth and peace in your gates.” To do this dutch courage is necessary, whereby we understand going against the prevailing opinion of others, of which a few, without self-consideration, represent the social values or the general values (godly Christian values) of which they themselves are convinced. God clearly defined what He wants for us in Philippians 2:1-5 “If there be therefore any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any bowels and mercies, Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be like-minded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind. Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others. Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus.” This demands honesty and self-examination and first and foremost keeping our eyes on Golgotha, from whence the forgiveness and new birth stems and has one Name: Jesus Christ!

(Translated by Linda Gates)


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