Daily Devotional: Psalms 41:7-13
All my enemies whisper together against me; they imagine the worst for me, saying, "A vile disease has beset him; he will never get up from the place where he lies." Even my close friend, whom I trusted, he who shared my bread, has lifted up his heel against me. But you, O LORD, have mercy on me; raise me up, that I may repay them. I know that you are pleased with me, for my enemy does not triumph over me. In my integrity you uphold me and set me in your presence forever. Praise be to the LORD, the God of Israel, from everlasting to everlasting. Amen and Amen.
2 Peter 1:3-4
His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.
There are so many evil desires that tempt us all. These are often called “lust” which carries a very bad rap. But this just means that there is something that we are to avoid that looks like it would be fun or would benefit us in some way. These desires are not wrong – they are not sin. We all have them, in fact, even Jesus had times in his earthly life that he wanted to do something wrong. In fact, he was tempted in every way that you and I face temptations today – in principle.
When we give in to these desires and we act on them, it then becomes sin. Jesus did not take this step, since he committed no sin at all. This final step into sin is often subtle and we sort of slide from the temptation part into the sin itself. This comes from thinking about it and rationalizing with ourselves until we give in and we sin. Or it comes in a split second that we fail to think about what we know.
Our goal is to grow spiritually to the point that we lose the desire to do wrong, and our mind is set only on doing what is right. But even then, there will be times that we know better but do it anyway or we leave undone that which we know we should be doing. When we recognize this, we turn from the sin, back to God.
O Lord God, give me wisdom to know what is right. Give me strength to do what is right. Give me humility to not brag about doing right. Help me remember that my righteousness is based on your forgiveness and not on my knowledge, or on my wisdom in understanding, or on my doing everything right. Use me to honor you and your holy name in all I do and all I say. Give your peace to those whose lives are in turmoil and those who are hurting. Thank you for all you have done for me and my family. Thank you for all you have given to us. In Jesus’ name.