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Discussion Forum : Devotional Thoughts : The Pursuit of God and Humility

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PosterThread
Renoncer
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Joined: 2010/6/26
Posts: 482


 The Pursuit of God and Humility

Brethren,

Most of us who visit SI on a regular basis have one thing in common: a hunger for the Lord and His righteousness. I am deeply grateful for such a website, and I thank God for like-minded brothers and sisters in Christ.

However, the pursuit of God is a dangerous one. Doing so, we are willingly subjecting ourselves to greater judgment. I am not saying that this is a bad thing; far be it from me to say such a thing! For God’s righteous judgment – in the light of His sovereign purpose in our lives – constitutes the foundation for sanctification, by which we are made worthy of the kingdom of God (1 Thessalonians 5:23-24; 2 Thessalonians 1:5). Praise the Lord!

What shall we then make of this, taking into consideration that we are a stiff-necked people? How does God deal with us, whose natural inclinations are forever sinful and rebellious? You might say, “That is what we were; but we were justified, we were sanctified, and seated in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus”, to which I would answer, “Amen!” But, let us never forget that these blessings become a reality for those who are in Christ Jesus, and in Him alone. You might wonder, “What’s the issue, then?” The issue is that it was not “I” who “began a good work”; neither is it “I” who “will bring it to completion”.

Consider this: What caused you to repent? Anyone who has the audacity to answer, “My free will…”, should be very careful, lest he fall into the pit of presumption. Salvation is a work of God, according to His merciful purpose, and by His power! (Ephesians 1:11-12; Romans 9:15-16; John 1:13) Never forget that man’s inclination is sinful from birth: rebellious, neither understanding nor seeking God; absolutely worthless! Meditating on these truths should cause us to fall on our faces in great fear before an infinitely Holy God. He is altogether different from us: we are altogether sinful; He is altogether righteous. What makes the difference in our lives and destiny has nothing to do with any virtue of the will or of the heart of man; it has everything to do with God’s abundant mercy towards exceedingly and persistently sinful men and women.

How should this affect the pursuit of God? The man who recognizes his wretchedness apart from the grace of God, should seek God with a humble and thankful heart, saying: “There was nothing in me that was worthy to plead; but, by the mercy of God, it came to me. Humbled in dust, I forever am; and a slave to Thee, I am compelled to be. Yet, I am compelled by love, which flowed unto me; from life unto life, was I purposed in Thee.”

Having been so humbled, we now understand the basis for interpersonal mercy; that is, mercy from one person to another. If we recognize that apart from the grace of God, all men would remain slaves to sin, then it makes no sense to condemn others, by which we would make ourselves judges over God’s Law. Who are you to judge your neighbor, Oh wicked man? We must be bearers of the Word, which in itself will bring death unto those who are perishing; but, we in ourselves are not to judge. However, as Christ’s ambassadors, we carry a fire that cuts deep within the heart of man. The more we pursue God, the more we subject ourselves to His righteous judgment. If we seek to become vessels of the fragrance of Christ unto men, we make ourselves candidates for the fiery furnace. In so doing, a pleasing aroma comes from total humility before God and men, in the light of our undeserved state of blessedness, which stems from the mercies of God Himself. But, woe unto him who subjects himself to the fiery furnace presumptuously! For the result would be a stench in the nostrils of the Almighty, an unreasonable sacrifice.

Brethren, my prayer is that this meditation would provoke a wave of conviction, leading to greater holiness, which bears the mark of humility. If you find fault in me, please rebuke me, for “faithful are the wounds of a friend” (Proverbs 27:6).

In Christ Jesus

 2010/8/31 2:12Profile
MyVeryHeart
Member



Joined: 2010/8/30
Posts: 449
Paradise, California

 Re: The Pursuit of God and Humility

Thank you God for your mercy, kindness, and steadfast love. Accept us as living sacrifices upon your altar, and perfect your praise from our unclean lips. The Lord Jesus has accomplished it! For his glory.


_________________
Travis

 2010/8/31 3:37Profile
Renoncer
Member



Joined: 2010/6/26
Posts: 482


 Re:

MyVeryHeart wrote:

"Thank you God for your mercy, kindness, and steadfast love. Accept us as living sacrifices upon your altar, and perfect your praise from our unclean lips. The Lord Jesus has accomplished it! For his glory."

Amen!

 2010/8/31 8:32Profile
MyVeryHeart
Member



Joined: 2010/8/30
Posts: 449
Paradise, California

 Re:

"Finally, brethren, farewell. Be perfect, be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace; and the God of love and peace shall be with you." 2Cr 13:11


_________________
Travis

 2010/8/31 16:20Profile
Renoncer
Member



Joined: 2010/6/26
Posts: 482


 Re:

Brethren,

We who pray for revival should meditate on this passage of Scripture:
‘He also told this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and treated others with contempt: "Two men went up into the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee, standing by himself, prayed thus: 'God, I thank you that I am not like other men, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week; I give tithes of all that I get.' But the tax collector, standing far off, would not even lift up his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, 'God, be merciful to me, a sinner!' I tell you, this man went down to his house justified, rather than the other. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but the one who humbles himself will be exalted."’ (Luke 18:9-14)

It is too easy for us to fall into presumption, especially when we pursue God and His righteousness. Let us honestly ask God to search our hearts in order to show us if our pursuit is humble or presumptuous. A humble pursuit of God is done in brokenness, whereas a presumptuous one is done in self-validation. A humble pursuit of God esteems others greater than oneself, whereas a presumptuous one looks down on those we esteem to be lesser.

We must recognize that sanctification (holiness) is an act of the Almighty by which He overturns our natural affinities. We should carefully consider the origin of the desire within for God, the origin of the strength within to endure, the origin of the drive within to press on, the origin of the power within to overcome, the origin of the burden within to pray, and the origin of the call within to go; yea, even the essence of our faith. Doing so, we should recognize that we are no different from the vilest of sinners. What makes the difference is God’s effectual provision of mercy and grace, and not our attainment of it.

The revelation of this reality will compel us to fall on our faces in genuine brokenness and humility, from which stem a greater hunger and thirst for righteousness, a merciful attitude towards others, and a purity of heart. Such is the only acceptable sacrifice, our reasonable act of worship.

“For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned.” (Romans 12:3)

Revival will come with brokenness and humility.

 2010/9/2 18:26Profile





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