Monday, May 11, 2009

Purposeful Not Passive

A few minutes ago, I went through Day 2 of the devotion that Pastor Brian put together for this week. The focal passage is Mark 9:30-37, with the particular emphasis of this day's devotion being 9:31 (the pastors are teaching verse by verse through the Gospel of Mark).

Pastor Brian compared the word "delivered" with the way it is used in Romans 4:25 and Romans 8:32 in order to emphasize the purposefulness behind the deliverance of Christ unto death. Christ's death wasn't just a passive happening or the consequence of how things played out because of man's choices. Christ's death was a purposeful plan from our loving, sovereign God. Christ's redemption of His people was purposeful. Christ's atonement was purposeful. Christ's justification of sinful people was purposeful.

My salvation isn't merely a bonus prize that came along with a passive death.

My salvation is the result of a choice ... God's choice. God chose how to redeem His people, and He set forth that plan of redemption very purposefully.

So why do I live my life as a follower of Christ so passively?

Because it's easy.

Making purposeful decisions to put others before myself and to serve them with unconditional love can be really difficult and really inconvenient. On my own, I have no desire to live that way. That's why I'm so incredibly grateful that "it is God who works in [me], both to will and to work for his good pleasure" (Phil. 2:13 ESV).

I can do nothing apart from Christ. I must rely on the Holy Spirit every second of every day. It's time for me to stop being so ridiculously passive and start living purposefully. It is time to "press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus" (Phil. 3:14 ESV).

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