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Remember, Repent, Repeat

Daily Reading: Revelation 2

Scripture Focus: Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first. (Revelation 2.5a)

Devotional Thought: Recently, I have been preaching a series of messages I entitled "Where's the Church?" These are messages from the book of Revelation, and include Jesus' words to the Seven Churches in Asia. The first church he addressed was the church in Ephesus. Where was this church? "In Denial."

Jesus commended the church in Ephesus. They were hard-working and patient. They endured persecution. They had maintained morally and doctrinally. They refused to grow weary, but just kept on going.

In this church of purity, morality, and consistency, however, Jesus found a tragic flaw. So deep was the flaw, that he told them to "Remember. Repent. Repeat." What was the flaw? They had abandoned their first love. And, they were living in a state of denial.

It is tragic when we put orthodoxy and duty in the place of love and passion for Christ. It is tragic when we would rather follow the rules than love Jesus with all our heart, soul, mind and strength. It is tragic when we have forgotten how much Jesus means to us. No matter how perfectly performed, dry dead religion does not please the heart of the Lover of our Souls.

In Luke 7, Jesus was eating in the home of a respectable "church member." A scandalous woman crashed the dinner party and wept profusely at the feet of Jesus. Jesus' host was indignant. Jesus, however, saw things differently. He said that her great love was due to her recognition that her great sins had been forgiven. He received that kind of love with joy, but the church member left him feeling cold.

How about you? Is your love for Jesus still red hot? If not, "Remember. Repent. Repeat."

Prayer: Lord, you have given me so much. Forgiveness! New life! Unconditional love! Cleansing! Forgive me, O Lord, when I take these things for granted, and reignite a passionate love for you in my soul! Amen.

Psalm of the Day: Psalm 107.10-16

10 Some sat in darkness and in the shadow of death,

prisoners in affliction and in irons,

11 for they had rebelled against the words of God,

and spurned the counsel of the Most High.

12 So he bowed their hearts down with hard labor;

they fell down, with none to help.

13 Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble,

and he delivered them from their distress.

14 He brought them out of darkness and the shadow of death,

and burst their bonds apart.

15 Let them thank the Lord for his steadfast love,

for his wondrous works to the children of man!

16 For he shatters the doors of bronze

and cuts in two the bars of iron.

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