Most of us can recall a teacher or mentor who profoundly shaped how we understand ourselves and the world. I often think with gratitude about my high-school English teacher. Most teachers used ballpoint pens to comment on student work, and many used blue ink as a signal of gentleness and...
You know the material, O God, and you know the student. You know us better than we know ourselves. Reveal the truth we need to know, and speak to us in the way that we need to hear. Amen.
This week we continue to explore the importance of Christian morality. We do not earn God’s grace by our actions; rather, our obedience is a response to God’s grace. In Deuteronomy, we read that the choice of life will bring prosperity and is the proper response from a heart of gratitude. The psalmist echoes this sentiment, for blessed are those who follow the Lord not just with words but also with actions. The Corinthians have not understood this, so they continue to act like those in the world around them, living by the flesh instead of by the Spirit. Jesus pushes us even further. God sees not only what we do on the outside but who we are on the inside. A true life of obedience begins on the inside and flows outward.
Read Deuteronomy 30:15-20. When have you experienced the choice God sets before us of life or death, prosperity or adversity, blessings or curses? How have you discerned how to obey God?
Read Psalm 119:1-8. How does following God’s commandments bring you joy?
Read 1 Corinthians 3:1-9. What affiliations of yours or of people you know could you insert in place of “Paul” or “Apollos” in the scripture?
Read Matthew 5:21-37. When have you experienced legalistic interpretations of scripture? How do you get to the heart of scripture?
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