Daily Devotional: Psalms 50:16-23
16 But to the wicked, God says: "What right have you to recite my laws or take my covenant on your lips? 17 You hate my instruction and cast my words behind you. 18 When you see a thief, you join with him; you throw in your lot with adulterers. 19 You use your mouth for evil and harness your tongue to deceit. 20 You speak continually against your brother and slander your own mother's son. 21 These things you have done and I kept silent; you thought I was altogether like you. But I will rebuke you and accuse you to your face. 22 "Consider this, you who forget God, or I will tear you to pieces, with none to rescue: 23 He who sacrifices thank offerings honors me, and he prepares the way so that I may show him the salvation of God."
21 "Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me on that day, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?' 23 Then I will tell them plainly, 'I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!'
There have always been those who claimed to worship God but lived their own lives for their desires and in their own way. In doing this, they ignore what God has told them they must do or must not do. Much like the Pharisees in the days of Jesus on earth, they keep the details of the laws of worship but they overlook the more important things that come from the heart such as mercy, justice and love for each other. Our service to God must be spiritual worship from the heart.
The essence of this worship is not found in a church building on Sunday. It is how we live each day. Do we allow the Spirit to mold us into the image of Jesus? Paul said that the Spirit is in opposition to the flesh and both cannot have control in our lives. Jesus said we can tell if the tree is good by its fruit and the fruit of the Spirit living in us is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. All of these are traits of our Savior and we are to allow them to identify us as they become our traits also. This is Jesus in us.
O Lord God, heavenly Father, and giver of life, I am so thankful for each new day; for my family and for the many friends you have put into my life. I ask you to be with those who read the devotional each day, even those I have never met, and help each of us to apply your word to our hearts and lives. Each one of us has our own special problems, pains, concerns and heartaches so I ask you to give your peace and your healing as you know best. Help me love and show grace to others as you have shown love and grace to me. I pray in the name of Jesus.