Monday, July 16, 2012

Thirteen Ways to Distinguish Ourselves from Sinners

Today's Reading:
  • Luke 6:12 - 38
  • Psalm 67:1 - 7
Read Bible Passages Online

Luke 6:12 - 38 
32  If you love only those who love you, why should you get credit for that?  Even sinners love those who love them.
33  And if you do good only to those who do good to you, why should you get credit?  Even sinners do that much!
34  And if you lend money only to those who can repay you, why should you get credit?  Even sinners will lend to other sinners for a full return.
 Jesus is telling us that even those who are unsaved can do good things for others.  Our job as Christians is to distinguish ourselves from sinners.  We have to do things that will make people stop and take notice of our generous, calm, and forgiving nature.  Something that makes people wonder: Wow -- how is it this person is so much different than I am?  Is becoming saved really that powerful?

Unfortunately for many Christians, the answer to that question is no.  Well, let me qualify that statement.  Becoming saved, receiving the power of Christ -- it's the most powerful experience of your life.  But those who actually buckle down and let this power permanently make over their lives are fewer and further between. 

So what sort of things are we supposed to do to distinguish ourselves from sinners?  Today's reading in Luke offers an abundance of suggestions:
  1. Love your enemies (6:27)
  2. Do good to those who hate you (6:27)
  3. Bless those who curse you (6:28)
  4. If someone slaps you on the cheek, offer the other cheek (6:29)
  5. If someone demands your coat, offer your shirt also (6:29)
  6. Give to anyone who asks (6:30)
  7. When things are taken from you, don't try to get them back (6:30)
  8. Do to others as you would have them do to you (6:31)
  9. Lend without expecting to be repaid (6:35)
  10. Be compassionate (6:36)
  11. Do not judge others (6:37)
  12. Do not condemn others (6:37)
  13. Give and you will receive (6:38)

Psalm 67:1 - 7
This simple, short Psalm calls for the entire world to know and praise the Lord.  And what better way for the entire world to know the Lord, than for the people of the Lord to truly distinguish themselves from amongst the sinners?

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