OPEN HEAVENS DAILY DEVOTIONAL
DATE: THURSDAY JANUARY 4TH 2018
THEME: ONLY BELIEVE
He that believeth on him is not condemned: but He that believeth not is condemned already, because He hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. JOHN 3 : 18
READ: ROMANS 8 : 31 – 39
8:31. What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?
8:32. He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall He not with him also freely give us all things?
8:33. Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth.
8:34. Who is He that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us.
8:35. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?
8:36. As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.
8:37. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.
8:38. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,
8:39. Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Whenever I ruminate over the many – sided blessings embedded in the Good News that came through our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, my heart is filled with great joy. I equally find it fascinating that no elaborate process involving complexities is required for us to access these blessings. Jesus did the hard work and made things simple for us. One of such blessings is freedom from condemnation. The righteous judgement of God against sin has brought all of mankind under condemnation. This is the reason why no man can escape the pain of guilt that results from sin, or the consequences that follow it. Romans 3 : 23 says,
“For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;”
Romans 6 : 23a further says,
“For the wages of sin is death;”
However, the Good News is that Jesus Christ gives us freedom from the condemnation that had put a seal on the destiny of all mankind. In Romans 8 : 1, this Good News says,
“There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.”
Those who are in Christ Jesus can now live a life free from the guilt of sin or the feeling of inadequacy resulting from past misdeeds. Their conscience is liberated from condemnation because they know their sins have been washed away by the precious Blood of Jesus (Revelation 1 : 5). What does it takes to access this blessing of freedom? Only believe! Believe in the Person of the Lord Jesus Christ, believe He is who He says He is, and believe in the work of salvation He has completed. How do you know you truly believe all these? When your actions and confessions reflect what you claim to believe, that is when you truly believe.
Another blessing of the Good News that you can have access to by faith is the truth that Jesus Christ, though rich, became poor, so that through His poverty, you might be rich (2 Corinthians 8 : 9). Your faith in this article of the Good News will prevent you from doing diabolical or criminal things to get rich, because you know that your prosperity lies in the sacrificial life that the Master has lived. Believing in the words and works of Jesus gives us contentment, the absence of which brings many sorrows to those who want to be rich by any means (1 Timothy 6 : 6 – 10). Beloved, do you believe all these? If you do, live your life by the ideals of the Good News of the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will forever be free from condemnation, now and in eternity.
Father, please help me to live according to Your will, so that I may not be condemned with this world. Grant me grace not to lose sight of the words and works of Jesus. Amen.
BIBLE IN ONE YEAR:
GENESIS 8 – 10, REVELATION 3 : 7 – 22
AUTHOR: PASTOR E A ADEBOYE
HYMN 10 :
MY FAITH LOOKS UP TO THEE
1. My faith looks up to Thee,
Thou Lamb of Calvary,
Saviour divine !
Now hear me while I pray,
Take all my guilt away,
Oh, let me from this day
Be wholly Thine !
2. May Thy rich grace impart
Strength to my fainting heart,
My zeal inspire !
As Thou hast died for me,
Oh, may my love to Thee
Pure, warm, and changeless be,
A living fire !
3. While life’s dark maze I tread,
And grief around me spread,
Be Thou my guide;
Bid darkness turn to day,
Wipe sorrow’s tears away,
Nor let me ever stray
From Thee aside.
4. When ends life’s transient dreams,
When death’s cold, sullen stream
Shall o’er me roll;
Blest Saviour, then in love,
Fear and distrust remove;
Oh, bear me safe above,
A ransomed soul !