Thursday, December 6, 2012

Let's Win the Race with the Right Perception

Scripture: Philippians 3:15-16
Let us therefore, as many as are perfect, have this attitude; and if in anything you have a different attitude, God will reveal that also to you; however, let us keep living by that same standard to which we have attained.

InsightsLet’s use this athletic theme to make this final point.  Think of the “attitude” that Paul wrote about in today’s verse as the right perception of the rules by which we run this race.  In other words, just as a runner who breaks the rules is disqualified, so we, if we run with the wrong attitude are disqualified from the prize.  Now, I am not talking about one losing his/her salvation—that is impossible.  I am, however, referencing yesterday’s Thoughts by Scott discussion of the Bema seat judgment.  In this judgment if we have dead works, or if we don’t follow the rules, then they are works burned up like wood, hay and straw.  In WarrenWiersbe’s commentary he writes the following to help us understand this thought better, “Bible history is filled with people who began the race with great success but failed at the end because they disregarded God’s rules.  They did not lose their salvation, but they did lose their rewards.  It happened to Lot, Samson, Saul, and Ananias and Sapphira.  And it can happen to us!  It is an exciting experience to run the race daily.  It will be even more exciting when we experience that ‘upward calling’ and Jesus returns to take us to heaven!  Then we will stand before the bema to receive our rewards!  It was this future prospect that motivated Paul, and it can also motivate us.”  Notice one last thought regarding these verses with me.  Paul wrote, “… and if in anything you have a different attitude, God will reveal that also to you…”  Paul knew the rules and he was charged with teaching and preaching the truth regarding spiritual conduct.  At the same time, however, he knew it was not his responsibility to convict the hearts of other people.  God does that through His Holy Spirit and Paul had faith that the Father would change a person in due time to the right perception regarding the rules which were to be followed.  Beloved, we must first make certain we are following the rules and that happens only as we spend time with God and through reading His Scriptures.  We then must pray for others to grow in God’s grace and have faith God will bring about His work in their lives.

  1. Are you following the rules God has given us through Scripture?
  2. If you are not, are you willing to repent and turn back to our Father for restoration?
Prayer: Father, I do not follow the rules of the race perfectly.  I ask for Your grace to be shown to me when I fail and to be strengthened and encouraged to press on toward that perfect life I have in Christ.  Amen. 

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