Truth for Today

Respecting What Is Right

Respect what is right in the sight of all men.

~ Romans 12:17 [NASB]

If you sincerely respect others, including your enemies, you will be predisposed to do the right thing concerning them. Such respect helps you to discipline and prepare yourself ahead of time to respond in all situations in a manner pleasing to God.

Behaving in a way that respects what is right and demonstrates graciousness and forgiveness toward others, even your enemies, should be a positive testimony to them. It will also “adorn the doctrine of God our Savior in all things” (Titus 2:10).

Truth for Today

Humility Should Rule

Do not be conceited.

~ Romans 12:16 [NIV]

Conceited, self-serving Christians are a serious contradiction. If we would follow Christ we must be submissive to God’s will as contained in His Word. Any confidence you have in yourself, your own wisdom, or your natural talents must be subordinated to the Lord’s commands. 

In no way should you be conceited, or in any respect consider yourself better than fellow believers. Instead, God wants you to accept and embrace every member of the body of Christ: “Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others” (Phil. 2:4).

Truth for Today

Having a Heart for The Lowly

Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position.
~ Romans 12:16 [NIV]

There is no aristocracy in the church, no place for an ecclesiastical elite that deserves all the attention. But the Bible doesn’t say you should never associate with wealthy or influential people. It’s simply that you should sense more of an obligation to serve the lowly people because they are the more needy. 

The Lord Jesus fittingly illustrated this truth, “‘When you give a dinner or a supper, do not ask your friends, your brothers, your relatives, nor rich neighbors, lest they also invite you back, and you be repaid. But when you give a feast, invite the poor, the maimed, the lame, the blind. And you will be blessed, because they cannot repay you; for you shall be repaid at the resurrection of the just’” (Luke 14:12–14).

It’s not wrong to invite friends and relatives to your home for a meal. But it is wrong to do so with selfish motives, with the notion of being rewarded, and with no regard for those who can’t repay you.

Truth for Today

The Enthusiastic Attitude Fervent in spirit.

~ Romans 12:11

One of humanity’s most chronic shortcomings is the lack of individual enthusiasm. Often our failures to achieve what we ought result directly from apathy and lack of commitment. But that should not be true if you’re a Christian.

Enthusiasm requires Spirit-assisted resolve and persistence, not just human-guided good intentions. Henry Martyn, the tireless missionary to India, conducted his ministry with scriptural enthusiasm and fervency. It was his desire to “burn out for God.” And the apostle Paul admonishes us to “not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart” (Gal. 6:9).

Truth for Today

Be a Mimic

Be imitators of God as dear children.
~ Ephesians 5:1

Imitating God May be easy to discuss, but it is difficult to do. You cannot do it in your own strength. But Jesus gave us the starting point for imitating God in the Sermon on the Mount. We need to mourn over our sin with a broken and contrite spirit. When we are overwhelmed by our sinfulness, we will hunger and thirst for righteousness. So there is a paradox: we are to be like God, yet we must know we cannot be like Him on our own.


Once we are aware of the paradox, then we know there must be some other power to make imitating God a possibility. The apostle Paul prayed that God would strengthen us “with might through His Spirit in the inner man” (Eph. 3:16). The Holy Spirit provides the strength “that you May be filled with all the fullness of God” (v. 19). We can be like God (in terms of His character), but we can’t do it on our own ~ that is the Spirit’s work.”

Truth for Today

RESURRECTION POWER

That I May know Him and the power of His resurrection.

~ PHILIPPIANS 3:10


Jesus Christ’s resurrection most graphically demonstrated the extent of His power. That’s the kind of power the apostle Paul wanted to experience because He realized he was helpless to overcome sin on his own.

The resurrection power of Christ deals with sin at our salvation. We experience His resurrection might at salvation. We were buried with Christ in His death, and we rose with Him to “walk in newness of life” (Rom. 6:4).

But to defeat sin daily, we need His resurrection power to be our resource. We need His strength to serve Him faithfully, to conquer temptation, to overcome trials, and to witness boldly. Only as we build our relationship with Christ and tap into His might will we have victory over sin in this life.

Truth for Today

A CLEANSED CONSCIENCE 

How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?

~ HEBREWS 9 : 14

Our safety in Christ results from “the answer of a good conscience toward God” (1 Pet. 3:21). The Greek word for “answer” refers to a pledge, in this case agreeing to meet certain conditions required by God before being placed into the ark of safety (Christ).

Unregenerate men and women have consciences that condemn them. One who appeals to God for a good conscience is sick of his sin and desires to be delivered from the load of guilt he bears. He has a crushing and intimidating fear of coming judgment and knows only God can deliver him. He desires the cleansing that comes through the blood of Christ (cf. Heb. 10:22). So he repents of his sin and pleads for forgiveness. 

When Christ suffered on the cross, hell threw all its fury at Him, and wicked men vented their hatred on Him. Yet through that suffering, He served as an ark of safety for the redeemed of all ages. And because He triumphantly provided salvation through His suffering, we are safe in Him.

Truth For Today

IDENTIFYING WITH CHRIST’S SUFFERING 

 It was fitting for Him, for whom are all things and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons to glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.
~ HEBREWS 2 :10

Christians can identify with their Master because like Him, they suffer to enter their glory. Christ said to the disciples on the road to Emmaus, “O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe in all that the prophets have spoken! Ought not the Christ to have suffered these things and to enter into His glory?” (Luke 24:25–26). Our Lord had to explain that future glory required that He suffer. We should expect the same.

The path to glory for Christ was the path of unjust suffering. That’s our path also. Jesus endured suffering with perfect patience and was exalted to the highest point of glory. He is our example of how to respond to suffering.

Truth for Today

BEARING FRUIT
 
He who abides in Me, and I in Him, bears much fruit. 
~ JOHN 15 : 5

We had a peach tree in our backyard, and one year it went wild with fruit. We had enough peaches to feed the whole neighborhood! Another year, we could find only one tiny, shriveled peach. Some Christians can be like that, exhibiting little evidence of belonging to God—but God wants us to grow and produce much fruit for His glory.

The fruit you bear is the manifestation of your character, and the only way people will know that you are a child of God. He wants to present Himself to the world through what He produces in you, so His character is at stake in your fruit. He wants you to be fruitful far above what the world or the flesh can produce.

Truth for Today

OUR CONSISTENT GOSPEL

He promised [the gospel] before through His Prophets in the Holy Scriptures. 
~ ROMANS 1:2

Did you know that the Old Testament is completely consistent with the New? That’s because the good news is old, not new. The Old Testament, from Genesis to Malachi, or anywhere in between, is all about the revelation of Jesus Christ.

Jesus said that the Scriptures give testimony about Him (John 6:39). In speaking to men on the road to Emmaus, Jesus said, “ ‘O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe in all that the prophets have spoken! Ought not the Christ to have suffered these things and to enter into his glory?’ And beginning at Moses and all the Prophets, He expounded to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself” (Luke 24:25–27). 

Why is that important for you today? So you can be confident that the Scripture holds God’s promise of good news in Christ.