Observations from today’s readings and today’s S-WOD, Sunday, 10 January 21:
Genesis 27:18 – “Who are you, my son?”
Jesus once asked, “For what does it profit a man if he gains the whole world and loses or forfeits himself?” (Luke 9:25) Jacob forfeited himself, his integrity, to steal what, ironically, God intended to give him anyway. (Romans 9:11-13) In so doing, Jacob brought much needless sorrow upon himself and upon his family – “The blessing of the Lord makes rich, and he adds no sorrow with it.” (Proverbs 10:22) “Bread gained by deceit is sweet to a man, but afterward his mouth will be full of gravel.” (Proverbs 20:17) Now in our readings, Jacob is on the run with a very hard road ahead of him; his self-induced struggle will result in much needless pain and sorrow.
Who are you? Who do you say you are? Are you still struggling needlessly to gain or claim something when Christ has already given you everything, immeasurable riches beyond imagination?
- 1 John 3:1-3 — See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is. And everyone who thus hopes in him purifies himself as he is pure.
- John 1:12-13 — But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.
- 2 Corinthians 5:17 — Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.
- Galatians 3:26-29 — For in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s offspring, heirs according to promise.
- Galatians 2:20 — I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.
- 1 Peter 2:9 — But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.
- Romans 8:1, 14-15 — Romans 8:1 — There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!”
- Romans 8:31-34 — What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died—more than that, who was raised—who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us.
- Ephesians 1:11 — In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will….
If you are a Christian, “by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.” (Ephesians 2:8, 9) You are a new creation, and your identity is glorious and secure in Christ. (2 Corinthians 5:17; Galatians 2:20) Don’t pretend to be something you’re not, and don’t disguise your identity before the world in an attempt to gain or protect something only God can give you and ensure. Don’t try to steal or earn an inheritance already guaranteed to you through Jesus. Don’t live the lie of self-justification, self-sufficiency, and self-righteousness and suffer needless pain and heartache. Rest in the Lord, trust in the Lord, wait upon the Lord, and glorify Him. Abide in His love and be fruitful. “He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?” (Romans 8:32)
- Matthew 11:28-30 – Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.
- Colossians 3:1-4 — If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.
- Ephesians 5:8-10 — For at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light for at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light (for the fruit of light is found in all that is good and right and true), and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord.
- Matthew 6:25-33 — “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.
“Cross” Fit S-WOD (Spiritual Workout of the Day) – 10 Jan 21: Claim your identity in Christ and rest upon His sufficiency. Abide in His love and enjoy Him.