New Wineskins 10 of 21 – Becoming a Doer of the Word
- July 4, 2018
- Posted by: William Hurtado
- Category: New Wineskins Daily Devotional
Pray for the baptism of the Holy Spirit, to become a doer and not only a hearer of the Word:
John and Judas are representatives of those who profess to be Christ’s followers. Both these disciples had the same opportunities to study and follow the divine Pattern. Both were closely associated with Jesus and were privileged to listen to His teaching. Each possessed serious defects of character; and each had access to the divine grace that transforms character.
But while one in humility was learning of Jesus, the other revealed that he was not a doer of the word, but a hearer only. One warred earnestly against his faults; but the other yielded to temptation, fastening upon himself more securely his habits of evil. One, daily dying to self and overcoming sin, was sanctified through the truth; the other, resisting the transforming power of grace and indulging selfish desires, was brought into bondage to Satan. (Adapted from AA 558-9)
Dear Heavenly Father,
What a lesson for me this morning! I hear You talking to me about DOING.
You are especially telling me to guard against a “doing” religion of exteriors! Both John and Judas, so to speak, were sitting in the same spot in church every Sabbath listening to the sermon! They both followed You around and did your bidding. Judas even held an office, as treasurer of the group… God, how many times do I look to what “I do for You” with satisfaction—whatever ministry in the church or outreach, whatever time spent in intercessory prayer—all this is but folly! I cannot do for You; You have done everything for me. You say I am in Christ Jesus, who became for me “wisdom from God–and righteousness and sanctification and redemption–”and there is absolutely NOTHING I can add to what You have done!
And I hear you calling me to a “doing” work in the heart, that is to submit to your chastisement that will “yield the peaceable fruit of righteousness.” To humbly say, “I’m wrong, I’m sorry, forgive me.” To be willing to die every day to my desires, to my flesh, and not resist Your transforming work of love in me! I need Your perspective, Lord, concerning my works of obedience! As David prayed, “Restore to me the joy of Your salvation and uphold me by Your generous Spirit. THEN, I will teach transgressors Your ways.” As David, I ask that You give me the sacrifice of a “broken and contrite heart,” that You “do good in Your good pleasure” in me. “Build my walls”– THEN You will be pleased with my sacrifices of righteousness, with my burnt offerings.” God, I need to “work” on staying connected with You and obeying Your still, small voice, and the exterior “doing” will fall into place, as an offering to You!
And yes, I also hear Your rebuke, for my mind and tongue often criticizes a brother or sister in the faith. First, God, I know I cannot recognize a Judas any more than the disciples could discern his true motive until after he was gone. You did not judge him nor talk about him nor expose him. But You loved him. Give me Your meekness, Your lowliness, Your long-suffering, and Your love. Leave me not to dishonor You, to misinterpret the words and motives of my brothers and sisters in the faith. Help me that I may be kind, pitiful, tenderhearted, forgiving. Help me to represent Your character to others” to even wash their feet.
I praise You for the lessons You have given me today, and ask that You keep bringing them back to my mind all day! Oh God, “forbid that I should boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world”! And in His name I pray, Amen.
As you read Matthew 18, ask God about your role and His; ask Him to make you a forgiving servant!
1 Cor. 1:29-31; Gal. 6:14; Heb. 12:11; AH 214-15; Ps. 51:12,13,17-19
P.S. I noticed this (much-loved) Nathan Greene poster on my wall after writing this devotional.