Wednesday, April 30, 2014

365 Days with God - Day 131: What's the point?

I'm giving myself a challenge. Read the Bible each day for a whole year, following the ESV Study Guide 1-year plan. Each day, I will post whatever God has revealed to me in His Word, and how it is changing me. A friend of mine once said that nothing has changed her life as much as reading the bible each day - and I'm excited for how this will change me. Join me on an adventure into the heart of God - and day by day, we can learn more about who He is and what that means to us!

- Andy Catts

Day 131, April 30, 2014
Readings: Psalm 130, Numbers 10:11-36, Isaiah 48, Isaiah 49, Colossians 2:6-23

 Ever felt like you were "less spiritual" or not as pious as someone else? Like you should be doing more, be more...or doing less, and being less? What exactly are the required traditions and rituals? What things are you not allowed to eat? What are you not allowed to do? What's the deal with monks? Should you be one? Are they better than you?

Let no one disqualify you, insisting on asceticism and worship of angels, going on in detail about visions, puffed up without reason by his sensuous mind, and not holding fast to the Head, from whom the whole body, nourished and knit together through it's joints and ligaments, grows with a growth that is from God.
If with Christ you died to the elemental spirits of the world, why, as if you were still alive in the world, do you submit to regulations - "Do not handle, do not taste, do not touch" (referring to things that all perish as they are used) - according to human precepts and teachings? These have indeed an appearance of wisdom in promoting self-made religion and asceticism and severity to the body, but they are of no value in stopping the indulgence of the flesh. (Colossians 2:18-23)

"An appearance of wisdom..." But the true purpose in any denial of self is not to be a better follower of Jesus. The real value is stopping the indulgence of the flesh. Stopping sin. Releasing it's hold on your life. It's a call to examine how and why we do what we do. To measure everything, good and bad, against the stranglehold that sin has on our lives.

Jesus takes it one step further in the Sermon on the Mount. "If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off." Wow. But we're talking about the same thing. Cut out, cut off, stop doing whatever causes you to sin. Don't create rules and regulations for no reason. Purposefully examine your life and be constantly refining it to look more like Jesus!

What are you doing that has no reason other than tradition? What should you be doing to eradicate sin from your life?

No comments: