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Defending the Faith

These Daily Reflections supply the messages from Grace Church as daily video clips from the most recent sermons. Each day's clip will last about 10 minutes and if you watch them all, you will have reviewed morning and evening sermons from the previous Sunday.

Ministry Reflection - July 18, 2009

The Sign of Signs: John 14:21

How do you know that you’ve truly come to Christ and received Him? It’s by forsaking all for him. Christ tells us that we must forsake everything if we are to come to Him. He told the rich young ruler, “If you wish to be complete, go and sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me” (Matt. 19:21). He told His followers, “So then, none of you can be My disciple who does not give up all his own possessions” (Luke 14:33).

How can you know whether it’s in your heart to do this? It’s by actually giving up everything to follow Him. This was a test the young ruler failed, but it’s one we can’t fail if we are truly His. When we must choose between Christ and something else, the evidence that we love Christ more is that we choose Him and turn away from the other.

How do you know that you really trust Christ? It’s when you do something that depends on that trust. It’s when you take the more difficult or dangerous road because you really believe the Lord will help you or that your sacrifice is worth it. Jesus told His disciples before He sent them out to preach, “He who has found his life will lose it, and he who has lost his life for My sake will find it” (Matt. 10:39). Those who trusted Him actually put their life on the line. This is what Abraham did when he left his own country and relatives for the land God would show him, “By faith Abraham, when he was called, obeyed by going out to a place which he was to receive for an inheritance; and he went out, not knowing where he was going. By faith he lived as an alien in the land of promise, as in a foreign land, dwelling in tents with Isaac and Jacob, fellow heirs of the same promise; for he was looking for the city which has foundations, whose architect and builder is God” (Heb. 11:8-10). This is what Moses did when he refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter and chose “to endure ill-treatment with the people of God than to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin,” because he considered “the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures of Egypt; for he was looking to the reward” (vv. 24-26). This is what Paul did when he suffered what he did for the sake of Christ and His Gospel, “For this reason I also suffer these things, but I am not ashamed; for I know whom I have believed and I am convinced that He is able to guard what I have entrusted to Him until that day” (2 Tim. 1:12).

Do you have true humility? It will show in the way you live. “He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?” (Micah 6:8).

Do you have a gracious fear of God? Then you will hate evil and turn away from it. “Come, you children, listen to me; I will teach you the fear of the LORD. Who is the man who desires life and loves length of days that he may see good? Keep your tongue from evil and your lips from speaking deceit. Depart from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it” (Psalm 34:11-14). “The fear of the LORD is to hate evil” (Prov. 8:13). “By lovingkindness and truth iniquity is atoned for, and by the fear of the LORD one keeps away from evil” (Prov. 16:6).

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