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Viewed From the Outside

Daily Reading: 1 John 3

Scripture Focus: The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him. (1 John 3.1)

Devotional Thought: "What does she see in him?" Have you ever heard that or wondered it yourself? Love, viewed from the "outside", just doesn't make sense.

It's not just with human relationships, either. Often, people just don't understand why we love Jesus. John gives three reasons why the world cannot and will not accept our faith:

  • Christ's Humanity. People can accept Jesus as a great teacher, a wonderful prophet, a compassionate friend, and a social warrior. What they can't accept is that this Jesus is God himself come in flesh. To think that God became human in Christ is to be confronted with two things: our problem and God's solution. Sin is the problem and complete surrender is the solution. Self-justification, self-centeredness, and self-sufficiency must give way to the demands of a God who joined us in our misery that we might join him in his glory.

  • Their Vanity. To confess our sins and repent requires that we humble ourselves before God. I'm not able to save myself. I depend on Another. The human animal is steeped in pride. That can be good on the human sphere - taking responsibility for ourselves is a commendable behavior. But we simply do not have the capability to address eternal things on our own. We need the help of The Eternal.

  • Our Christianity. We are in a predicament. We are not perfect in our performance and we will disappoint people. The Apostle Paul said it like this: "We have this treasure in jars of clay." And, people will even look for reasons to reject our faith. I know that if people want to, they can find many things about me to criticize. So, we must let Jesus shine as brightly as possible in us.

Prayer: Lord Jesus, I want to bring you glory. Please help me to live a holy and God-honoring life so that others may see you in me. Amen.

Psalm of the Day: 5 The LORD is your keeper; the LORD is your shade on your right hand. 6 The sun shall not strike you by day, nor the moon by night. 7 The LORD will keep you from all evil; he will keep your life. 8 The LORD will keep your going out and your coming in from this time forth and forevermore. (Psalms 121:5-8)

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