Monday, May 16, 2011

Week 17 - Gifts of God

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2 Peter 1:3-5

His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence, by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire. For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge,

Page one of this chapter was convicting because I began to think of how often I complain to God about what he has not given me or what he seems to have kept from me without considering the greatest gift that he has even bestowed upon us all, Jesus.

Romans 8:32 - He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?

Through Jesus' life and death we do not have to pay the death for all sins against God because Jesus has taken our place. There is nothing that we can do to deserve this type of love, and he is not expecting a payment for it. It is a gift. Nancy Guthrie writes, "Mercy says we don't have to do the time. Grace takes our place in the prison cell to do the time we deserve. ..Grace sets us free from the misery of our painful past and the mastery of sin; it frees us from sin's power to keep hurting us and making our lives miserable."

Titus 3: 5 - He saved us , not because of the good things we did, but because of his mercy.

"We deserve punishment but receive forgiveness; we deserve wrath but experience love; we deserve death, but God has shown us mercy." God calls us to be in his likeness, and if he has forgiven us and shown us mercy, we should show this same type of forgiveness and mercy to others. God doesn't weigh what you have done and decide that a sin is too heavy to forgive. Christ covers ALL sin. My suffering is different than others, and my pain was not caused because of someone's wrong doing, so, please, don't take this as my advice as though I understand but as something God has called all of us to do. Having to forgive someone doesn't mean that you are declaring their actions acceptable, but you are offering the same mercy that God has given you (Matthew 5:38-42, Luke 6:35, Romans 12:14-21). Justice is in God's hands. Let him do it. All him to carry the burden for you.

God's greatest gift to us is his son, Jesus, the one who gives us peace when we are suffering and helps to carry our burdens.

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