Wednesday, February 01, 2012

120201 - Matthew 03-04 - What God expects of us

Wednesday SOAP: Jesus began preaching with the word, "Repent." Sometimes that's defined as simply a 'turn' or "a change of heart that leads to a change of action." But what is it, really? He also said, "unless you repent, you too will all perish." Jesus gave a 3-point sermon about it in His responses to satan's temptation.

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(Why "SOAP?" See http://www.enewhope.org/firststeps/journaling)
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S: But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.

Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.

Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve. (Mt 4:4 ,7, 10).

O: So often, (for some reason), I dwell on the words of satan in the temptation. I suppose it's because it seems satan is driving the bus here, being given permission to tempt Jesus in the wilderness.


A: But I need to realize that even when it seems satan is directing things, God is ultimately in control. Jesus' answers form powerful direction for every person's life:

1) See God, not myself, as my provider and master: His Word nourishes me by building my knowledge of and relationship with Him.

2) Fear God: do not "tempt" Him by presuming upon His grace and mercy.

3) Worship God: serving God and glorifying Him is the purpose of my life. I must keep my heart with all diligence to ensure that my loyalties are not divided.

Jesus opens His ministry with another way to say all of this: "Repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand."

P: Lord, thank you for the direction - and for your prompting to finally see it this way. I'm very slow to catch on. Thank you for your mercy. And thank you for your direction in living the repentant life.

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