God loves us and has entrusted many things to us. Not only has He given us dominion over the creatures of the earth and the fowls of the air and over all living things, but most importantly, He has entrusted us with His reputation.
When we read the Apostle Paul’s letter to Timothy, his young son in the ministry, one can see that perhaps Timothy may have been easily intimidated. He may have been intimidated by the powerful or the elderly people within his congregation and community. Perhaps he was reluctant to call them to a higher level of faith in Christ Jesus. He may have been overly disciplined in his mannerisms by his mother and grandmother. Nevertheless, Paul write, “Do not allow anyone to look down on you because of your youth.”
We should set an example in our speech to others. We are to be ever aware of not only what we say, but how we say it. We should be an example of faith and purity because of our high calling. We should be people of great character and integrity. We have been given clear guidance for living with integrity. We are to be examples of love because God our Master and Savior is love, and He has commanded us that we should love one another, even our enemies (Matt. 5:44).
Therefore, let us watch our life’s walk closely, scour our life, and place it under the microscope of His Holy Word. Give yourself an occasional check-up in order to ensure that every part is working properly and within the will of God. Always remember, we are examples and our Lord’s reputation is at stake in us. Our walk is our witness. I say therefore, “let us walk in the Spirit.”
— Sister Catherine Raphael
When we sow peace, the light of Jesus shines into the world. The Bible reveals to us who God is, and one important aspect of His character is that the Lord loves peace and wants it to fill the earth. Read Jesus’ promise in John’s gospel: “Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful” (John 14:27). We also learn that the Lord is a “God of peace” (Romans 15:33; Philippians 4:9; 1 Thessalonians 5:23; Hebrews 13:20), the Messiah is called the Prince of Peace (Isaiah 9:6), and there is peace in heaven (Luke 19:38).
In light of all this, when Jesus says, “Blessed are the peacemakers” in Matthew 5:9, we can understand why: To be a peacemaker is to reflect the image of our heavenly Father—using our breath, energy, and creativity to sow peace wherever the Spirit takes us.
Think about it
•What words, feelings, or situations do you associate with peace? When have you experienced peace as a gift from God?
•Read John 14:27 again. Can you think of fears or concerns that affect your ability to experience or demonstrate peace?
—Dr. Charles Stanley, In Touch Ministries
This Month's Scripture
Scripture - Colossians 4:2
The carnal Christian is a stagnant Christian. The apostle Paul told the church in Corinth: “Indeed, even now you are not yet able, for you are still fleshly” (1 Corinthians 3:2-3). Even though a carnal Christian is saved, he has had little or no development over time. It is dismaying as a pastor to watch Christians who come to church week after week, month after month, year after year, making no progress even though they may be performing. They commit the same old sins the same way. They are not overcoming these sins that in time they should be mature enough to overcome. They refuse to think biblically.
What marks a stagnant Christian is their persistence in the milk of the word. We can call them the “A B C” Christians. “A B C” Christians are still learning how to read, while their peers are graduating from high school. The difference between the stagnant and growing Christian is that the stagnant Christian does not use the time since salvation to grow spiritually.
A carnal Christian is like a vehicle that has stalled because it has run out of gasoline. We are stalled if we still measure success in our spiritual lives purely by how much we were entertained in church. The Holy Spirit is there to provide the power, but your spiritual life needs gas. There’s nothing wrong with the engine, but the gasoline needed for this car to run is our commitment to grow. It needs our persistence.
One Minute Please
We have to make a decision on our own to move from the milk of the Word to solid food.
Watch Online Videos of Dr. Tony Evans and The Urban Alternative at LightSource.com