Friday, September 3, 2021

Our New Life Is About BE-ing and Not Merely DO-ing - And That Starts With Your Heart

Then Jesus, looking at him, loved him, and said to him, “One thing you lack: Go your way, sell whatever you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, take up the cross, and follow Me.” — Mark 10:21

When the rich young man approached Jesus (Mark 10:17-22), I think the man was certain that he had done everything right.  He had not murdered anyone, not committed adultery, not stolen, had not born false witness, not defrauded, and had honored his father and mother. But Jesus told him there was something that he lacked and then told the man to sell everything and give the proceeds to the poor.  Jesus could see what people could not see – what was hidden – the young man’s heart and its devotion. God looks at the heart of man, man looks at the deeds of man.  God wants our total devotion (Matthew 22:37), man is satisfied with a form of godliness.  We think that the answer is in the “DO-ing”, when the answer is really in the “Be-ing”.  The young man went away sad because what he offered Jesus as proof that he should be given eternal life was a not good enough.  Jesus asked for the very thing that the man loved more than God – money and possession.  The true devotion of the young man’s heart was exposed.

Doing good does not result in being good.  Being good results in doing good.  James wrote that a faith that doesn’t produce works is dead (James 2:17)  We must be careful that we are not led to the conclusion that our righteousness through faith in Jesus is a product, a result, of works. To be a good Christian all we have to do is try harder. But the truth is that to be a “good” Christian what we have to do is faith harder.  Good works are a natural result of true faith.  Not the other way around.  True faith is not a result of good works. (Ephesians 2:8) “We are saved by grace through faith, not of works.”  Dr. Henry Blackaby said, “You have heard it said ‘Don’t just stand there do something.’ But God is saying, ‘Don’t just do something, stand there.’” Do you see the difference? 

The young man was doing the right thing for the wrong reason.  Because the young man put his trust in himself and his possessions, his heart and his devotion to God was corrupted. King David said “Create in me a clean heart and renew a right spirit within me. …. For you will not delight in sacrifice, or I would give it; you will not be pleased with a burnt offering. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.” (Psalm 51)  Is there something in your heart that demands your devotion above God?  Something that you trust in more than the One who is trust worthy.  Are you trying to be a “good” Christian by trying harder? Our redeemer is faithful and true and is deserving of our total devotion.  Take some time to examine your heart … let the Holy Spirit search in those locked closets and clean them out.  Fulfill the purpose for which you were created and saved.  Bringing glory to God begins with a heart totally devoted to Him. 

Think about it – Pray about it – Believe it – Walk in it. Let your light shine and give God the glory.

By Faith Alone By His Grace Alone And For His Glory Alone

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