#2454 0723 17A

            We have admitted to ourselves and to God, that we have made all too many mistakes, all too many times, and that we have broken His Commandments more often than we could count. We realize that on the Day of Judgment, if every wrong thought; every unscriptural attitude; and our secret sins would be presented as evidence against us, we would be guilty of every charge, and condemned to the lake of fire.

            The hope we have, and the solution given, is that Jesus took our place on the cross; that He was bruised for our iniquities; that He gave His life to atone for our sins; and that He rose from the grave, so we could rise to a new life of faith and trust on that Blood sacrifice.  We can now be pardoned of all the sins, the mistakes, and the wrongdoings we have been guilty of—that is how much God loves us—Romans 5:8 “While we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”

            Deciding to serve God, is continuing to trust God—to confess our sins to Him, and to be willing to forsake them with His help.  It is yielding ourselves to God, and following our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.  It is presenting ourselves to Him anew every day—to follow the apostle’s advice Romans 12:1 “That ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.” 

            Deciding to serve God, means wanting to read His Word on a daily basis, and obeying the instructions He gives in those Scriptures.  It is only because of the atoning Blood sacrifice made by the Lord Jesus for us on Calvary’s Cross, and our decision to trust in what He did for us, that we can live forever with Him—the only reason!  We are eternally gratefully!

            Jesus says—Matthew 6:24 “No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.”  No one can serve two masters at the same time, therefore we must decide who, or what, we will serve for the rest of this life—and on into eternity. 

            If anyone decides to serve self, they have decided as Satan did—they will be aligned with him in this life and the next.  Deciding to serve God means choosing to eliminate self in our heart.  Joshua 24:14 “Now therefore fear the LORD, and serve him in sincerity and in truth: and put away the gods which your fathers served on the other side of the flood, and in Egypt; and serve ye the LORD.” 

            Key words are: in sincerity and in truth—because not many who say they are a Christian, do either one—although they may think they do by a statement of faith.  Joshua went on 15 “And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.” 

            We will have to admit that we are serving someone, or something, at the present time.  We should really think about our spiritual condition; about our statement of faith; and most importantly, about our trust on the sacrifice of Atonement Jesus made for us—that is a requirement of God if we serve God.  How would we appear before God’s judgment throne—what could we write down is the issue. 

            An unbeliever must write: Condemned; but a believer can write: Forgiven.  We are either one or the other—judged or justified!  There is no position between the two.  If we think that we would be condemned, we still have hope, and God’s mercy enables us to be forgiven—if we sincerely repent. 

            The apostle said 2 Corinthians 6:1 “We then, as workers together with Him also plead with you not to receive the grace of God in vain. 2 For He says: ‘In an acceptable time I have heard you, And in the day of salvation I have helped you.’ Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.” 

            Near the end of the concluding pages of the Bible, God writes: Revelation 12:10 “And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.” 

            Satan constantly accuses us, and tells us there is no hope; we are condemned, but we must reply that the accuser of our brethren is cast down, therefore he must flee, because we serve, and trust, and believe in the living God who sent His Son to pay for our sins—sins that would have condemned us, cannot anymore—we have decided to serve God.

            To serve God means a new attitude is now part of our life and personality—we are not the same person we were before deciding.  2 Corinthians 5:17 “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” 

            Those things we once loved, we no longer want; those attitudes we once kept, we now discard.  If we have decided to follow Jesus, we must emulate His attitude toward people.  Philippians 2:5 “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus.” 

            We are now a different person—when we have decided to serve God, and we have willingly confessed our sins in the sincerity of our heart, God sees us as a new creature and justified, because a ransom has been paid in full.  No debt remains to be paid—all our sins are forgiven.  Every day from this point on, we decide to serve God concerning any choice that has to be made.

            From that decision to serve God, the Son of God is living inside of us, and His Spirit is controlling our life; our choices, decisions, and how we treat others.  We may not fully understand this big change and new life at first—and the world does not understand it at all, but it is real, and it is possible—just by a choice and decision on our part.

            Colossians 1:26 “Even the mystery which hath been hid from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to his saints: 27 To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.”  It is not resentment, unbelief, and wrong attitudes in us, but Jesus in us—it is His Spirit that gives us a living hope.

            We should be humbled by the changes in our life; we should be grateful for the different attitudes in our heart; and we should be thankful that all those former things; and interests; and attitudes we once thought we should hold on to, are disposed of and eliminated—they are not important at all, but spiritual things, worthwhile interests, and Christ-like attitudes are very important and what we now desire.

            Deciding to serve God means constantly quoting: Galatians 2:20 “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.” 

            The more we affirm who we are in Christ, the more our behavior will reflect our true identity.  John the Baptist paved the way for Jesus to personally give us His Truth in Person.  The apostle said John 1:12 “But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name.” 

            We are now part of the family of God, and that is not because of anything we could do; but only because of what Christ has done—that is why we have decided to serve God through faith in His Son.  We become His child when we truly receive His Son—we are then given the power to be part of His family of true believers—“to them that believe on His name,” by trusting on His divine power. 

            Every day will present new opportunities to prove we belong to this new family—“power to become” more patient with the training of children; “power to become” more Christ-like in our treatment of others; “power to become” more forgiving of those who offend us; “power to become” more dependent on God for everyday needs; and “power to become” the peacemaker in all situations and during all interactions with family or friends.

            Deciding to serve God means choosing to follow Christ—listening, learning, and following the advice the Son of God gave us regarding every aspect of life.  Luke 6:35 “Love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for he is kind unto the unthankful and to the evil.”  We are now Jesus’ friend—if we follow His advice.  John 15:14 “Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you.”  

            Jesus went on to explain—John 15:15 “No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you.”  God speaks to us from the pages of the Bible—we should not take that lightly, but should seriously read to learn and live by His instructions.

            Deciding to serve God means wanting to be justified by God—and be acceptable to Him.  All that we need from God is received by faith in Him.  Everyone needs justification for all the mistakes and errors of the past.  Romans 5:1 “Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.” 

            Deciding to serve God means being controlled by His Spirit.  1 Corinthians 6:17 “He that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit.”  His Holy Spirit is resident within—1 Corinthians 6:19 we are to be united as one with the Spirit whom God has given.  1 Corinthians 6:20 “Ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.” 

            All that we decide to say and do and be involved with, must be done according to the instructions of the Scriptures.  We are one in spirit with Jesus, as we walk with Him in truth, because God purchased our life on the Cross. 

            Hebrews 12:28 “Wherefore we [are] receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear.”  Deciding to serve God, means we are receiving a kingdom—prepared for us by our Lord and Savior.