“So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as
Lord, continue to live your lives in him” (Col. 2:6).
We are to obey the same way we received Christ, that is, by
grace through faith.
Obedience is always from the heart. If it is from the head
only, it might be by the act of will only, and therefore it will be by effort
and not by grace.
Before I became a Christian, I lived a life of “obedience” in
that I did not use profanity or slang, smoke, drink, or have sex. I was
impressed with my goodness (or lack of badness). I impressed my non-Christian
classmates with my “goodness.” I did not impress the Christians.
I had two strong attributes which also happen to be the primary
attributes of Satan:
Arrogance: I was self-righteous and proud of it.
Satan said, “I will be like the Most High.”
Lying: I lied very much. Jesus said of Satan
that when he lies, he speaks his first language.
I was being like the devil and thinking I was good. That
changed on October 18, 1947, when I came to know the Father.
Some things changed immediately: I confessed my sins and obeyed
Over the next several years, I memorized many verses of
Scripture. At the time, I thought that it was a good spiritual thing to do.
Under the conviction of Psalm 119:11 (“I have hidden your word
in my heart that
I might not sin against you.”), I memorized 108 verses in the first 14
months that I was a Christian. The next year, I memorized 3
verses a week. The following year, I memorized 5 verses a week.
During that year, I began to suspicious—I had memorized several
hundred verses, but I was still sinning.
The problem was that these verses were in my head, not in my
heart. I realized that they needed to be hidden in my heart in order to keep me from sin.
Then on a canoe trip to Hudson Bay in 1952, our canoe got
swamped in some rapids we were trying to run. All of my cards with handwritten
verses on them got soaked and blurred. I had become arrogant about how many
Scriptures I knew, and this wiped away the record I had been keeping of all
those memorizations. I thanked God.
How do you hide God’s Word in your heart? By believing it and obeying
This post coordinates with tomorrow’s reading in the To
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