6 Minute Read

Be Still

To the best of your ability, get rid of all distractions. Take a couple of minutes to breathe deeply, to quiet yourself in the Lord’s presence. Then, prayerfully ask the Lord to speak to you in this time and let Him know that you will be listening and will make whatever adjustments He will reveal to you.

Today’s Bible Reading:

Zechariah 6:1–7:14
Revelation 15:1-8
Psalm 143:1-12
Proverbs 30:24-28

Listen to the Lord

Slowly and reflectively read the following verses and listen to what God will say to you through them. Then, consider writing down any insights He reveals to you.

Psalm 143:2 (NLT): “Don’t put your servant on trial, for no one is innocent before you.”

Reflections from Scripture:

On its face, Psalm 143:2 sounds utterly hopeless. If we reflected deeply upon its truth, we would feel the emotion of fear.

Psalm 143:2 (NLT): “Don’t put your servant on trial, for no one is innocent before you.”

All too often, we fail to realize our guilt before God. Have you ever lied? Of course, you have, and it only takes one lie to be a liar. Almost certainly, you have been guilty of jealousy and envy, lust, anger, pride, dishonoring your parents, failing to love your enemies, and so much more. We really are guilty before God!

This poses a huge problem, doesn’t it?

God’s holiness says: 

“I am completely sinless, and you are guilty. So, first of all, you cannot come near Me. Further, My holiness demands that I cannot be indifferent to your sin, so I must punish you.”

God’s love says: 

“I made you for a relationship with Me. I want you to be with Me so that I can enjoy you and you can enjoy Me.”

How do God’s holiness and love get reconciled? Through the cross of Jesus!

If you want to look at how serious sin is and how a holy God is angry at sin, look at the cross. But, if you also want to know how much God loves you and how far He is willing to go to bring you into a relationship with Him, look at the cross.

Because of the cross of Jesus, all of those who trust in Him (and not themselves) to pay their sin debt are forgiven and declared completely righteous. 

So, we never have to worry about being condemned by God because Jesus paid our sin debt. Even though we have sinned (and will continue to struggle with sin), we realize that Jesus paid our sin debt, and we are completely forgiven.

If you have never received the gift of forgiveness and eternal life, why not do that today? Stop trusting in yourself and your supposed good behavior to get you to Heaven. Instead, look to Jesus and trust in Him to make you right in God’s eyes. In that moment, the hopelessness of Psalm 143:2 loses its sting. Because our hope is now in Jesus!

If you have any questions about how you can be forgiven and enter into a relationship with Jesus, please feel free to contact me. I would be glad to help you begin this journey.

My e-mail is mattellis1997@gmail.com.

Spend Time in Prayer

Lord Jesus, thank You for giving Your life so that I might be made right in Your eyes. I am eternally grateful for what You have done for me. I pray this in Your Name, Amen.

Matt Ellis is the pastor of First Baptist Church in Polk City, Florida (fbcpolkcity.com). His latest book is God’s Grace in the Real World. Connect with him on Facebook.

Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash