Daily Devotion Tuesday, September 4th

Tuesday, September 4, 2012 – Psalm 36; Job 12:1, 13:3-17, 21-27; Acts 12:1-17 and John 8:33-47

Acts 12:1-17 –6The very night before Herod was going to bring him out, Peter, bound with two chains, was sleeping between two soldiers, while guards in front of the door were keeping watch over the prison. 7Suddenly an angel of the Lord appeared and a light shone in the cell. He tapped Peter on the side and woke him, saying, “Get up quickly.” And the chains fell off his wrists. 8The angel said to him, “Fasten your belt and put on your sandals.” He did so. Then he said to him, “Wrap your cloak around you and follow me.”

John 8:33-47 – 34Jesus answered them, “Very truly, I tell you, everyone who commits sin is a slave to sin. 35The slave does not have a permanent place in the household; the son has a place there forever. 36So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed.

Today’s theme is freedom in Christ.

In Acts we hear how one who served Christ, Peter, had been imprisoned yet the angel of the Lord came and freed him from prison. It was such a miracle that even those who knew Peter did not believe it could be so.

Then in John we hear how Jesus promises that all who trust in him can be freed from all sin. Sin, makes us a slave to sin, which causes us to sin, which further makes us a slave to sin. Yet thanks to the overpowering love of God shown us and given us in Christ, we can be freed of all the effects of our sins and given new life.

For me, what I find is that sin is like a magnet that draws me away from God to self, to darkness and to even death and the love of God shown me in Jesus Christ is the magnet that draws me away from sin and towards the freedom to be a child of God.

A member of my church once sent me the following. I really liked it and look it up every once in a while. It fits my thoughts for today. “Two Wolves”

An old Cherokee is teaching his grandson about life

“A fight is going on inside me,” he said to the boy

It is a terrible fight and it is between two wolves.
One is evil – he is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed,
arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies,
false pride, superiority, and ego.”

He continued, “The other is good – he is joy, peace, love,
hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy,
generosity, truth, compassion, and faith

The same fight is going on inside you –
and inside every other person, too

The grandson thought about it for a minute and then
asked his grandfather, “Which wolf will win?”

The old Cherokee simply replied, “The one you feed.”

Today, give thanks for the freedom from sin, given us in Christ and seek to follow, feed the ways of this freedom and find new life. In the words of Martin Luther King; “Free at last, free at last, thank God Almighty I’m free at last.” Amen.

O God, thank you for the gift of freedom from sin. Forgive me for feeding and following the ways of sinfulness and brokenness instead of following the ways of Christ. May I turn my focus fully upon you, so that I can really experience the joy that comes from being freed from sin and given new life. I know as long as I keep my focus upon me, I’ll follow the ways of sin, but if I turn my eyes upon Jesus , I’ll follow, better at least, your ways of life and peace. Amen.

Psalm 36 – 5   Your steadfast love, O LORD, extends to the heavens,
your faithfulness to the clouds.
6   Your righteousness is like the mighty mountains,
your judgments are like the great deep;
you save humans and animals alike, O LORD.

7   How precious is your steadfast love, O God!
All people may take refuge in the shadow of your wings.

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