As Christ followers God has blessed us with His very presence in our lives. But even with His presence we still need to do all we can to guard against moral failure and sin. We need to flee from sin as we refuse to participate in rebellion against our God. We need to remember our responsibilities and who we ultimately belong to. We need to shut out and avoid would-be tempters as we run for our lives from sin. We will know we are moving in the right direction away from sin when we find ourselves enduring persecution for doing what’s right.
It is clear from Scripture that we need to center our lives on Christ while trusting God for our provision. Since there’s really no way to hide sin, we need to count the cost of our rebellion before we fail, recognizing that sin has the power to blind us from reality. Ultimately, we need to know that God will always have His way in the end.
In a world where jealousy and hatred reign and where love has been lost, we need to realize that God is yet worthy of our trust. We have no right to callously humiliate and abuse our brother. We have no right to sell our brother down the river. We have no right to manipulate the truth about our brother. We are our brother’s keeper.
In a world where love has been lost and where hatred and jealousy reign, we need to work diligently to protect our brothers and sisters. It turns out that we are our brother’s keeper. We need to love others while trusting in God’s sovereign plan as He guides us. Like Jesus, we need to protect others by doing all we can to be life savers.
Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and make a profit”— yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that.” As it is, you boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil. So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin.
Without Christ we are dead. We were dead in our trespasses and sins. We were followers of the ways of this world. We were followers of the Evil One. We were sons of disobedience. In Christ we are made alive by His mercy and love, by raising us up with Christ, and by grace through faith. Through Christ we are given a purpose. Our work is to demonstrate the fruit of our salvation, to be obedient to God, to share the gospel and to bring glory to God.
We can worship God with all our people anytime, anywhere. We can worship God in the presence of our enemies and in the face of sorrow. We can worship Him for His trustworthy promises as He works wonders in our life. We can worship Him through great joy and great loss and we can worship Him even when others turn away.
God is calling all of us to return to Him in worship. But how should we prepare to worship God? We can prepare to worship Him by burying our old way of life, by putting off sin and putting on Christ, by creating an environment of worship in our lives, and by doing all we can to worship Him for all that He is and for all that He has done for us.
Our passions and desires have the potential for great defilement and destruction. We need to turn away from anger. We need to turn away from deceitful retaliation. We need to turn away from self-indulgent greed. We need to turn our hearts away from murder. We need to guide our families in righteousness and obedience.
We need to do all we can to seek peace and reconciliation through demonstrating complete humility, receptive love, openhanded generosity, reasonable negotiation, and the ongoing worship of Almighty God.