Now it is God who makes both us and you stand firm in Christ.
Thoughts for Today:If we read through the Bible and count, we would find there are over three thousand promises God has made to us. Promises about health, happiness, peace, prosperity, freedom, finances, family matters, and security. Many of these promises were given in the Old Testament based upon a formula most of us are familiar with: "If" we keep the commands of the Lord -- "then" He will solve our problems, do amazing things, and take complete care of us. For example: Deuteronomy 11:22-23: "If you carefully observe all these commands I am giving you to follow ? to love the Lord your God, to walk in obedience to him and to hold fast to him ? then the Lord will drive out all these nations before you, and you will dispossess nations larger and stronger than you."
It remains the understanding many of us have: "If we do this, then we'll receive that." The problem is we know that we don't always love the Lord with all our hearts, we don't always walk in His ways, and we don't always hold fast to Him. With this kind of thinking in place we know, when we don't do the "ifs" we can't expect the "thens".
However, in our passage today Paul tells us God already has done the "if" part through His Son Christ Jesus. And He's given us the Holy Spirit so we can be absolutely certain of His guarantee. Therefore, Deuteronomy 11:22 now says: "Jesus kept all these commands I gave you to follow -- He loved the Lord His God, He walked in obedience to Him, He held fast to Him." So by God's grace and for His glory -- no matter how weak, foolish and undeserving we are -- when we opened our heart to Jesus, He placed us in Christ. It leaves us nothing to do but say: "Yes and amen!" (The previous verse -- 2 Corinthians 1:20: "For no matter how many promises God has made, they are 'Yes' in Christ. And so through him the 'Amen' is spoken by us to the glory of God.")
Questions to Ponder:Are you still working on the "if" part of forgiveness? What is remaining? Jesus has done all the work. His blood was spilled and His life was given for ours. Therefore, we are now living in the "then" part of God's promises. Have you repented of your sins? Have you asked forgiveness? Will you accept His grace and yield to His glory? Will you allow God, through the power of His Holy Spirit, to make you stand firm in Christ?