Day ONE of 50 Day Spiritual Journey

 

Yesterday, we started a new sermon series entitled “Identity…Being Who we are in Christ”.   I invited you on this 50-day spiritual journey of prayer, fasting, and seeking the face of the Lord for the future of our church and for your own personal spiritual growth.   There are two key verses that will serve as the foundation for the next 50 day spiritual journey—Romans 8:29 and 2 Corinthians 3:18.

Today, we will explore Romans 8:29.

Read Romans 8:29

Everything starts with the glory of God. God in His infinite majesty is the self-existent, all-sufficient, glorious Creator who in no way ever needs humans to somehow satisfy Himself. God is completely satisfied in being God.  He doesn’t need anything.  God was not lonely up in heaven and then decided to create humans as a way to fill some eternal void.  No, we serve a God who is absolutely sovereign and wonderful.

Yet, in His great mercy, He decided to create you and me in His image and for a very specific purpose. The chief end of man is to glorify God by enjoying Him forever. God created us for His glory and He will not share that glory with anyone or anything else.

In Romans 8:29, Paul tells us that God has planned from the very beginning that we as His people be conformed to the image of His Son Jesus.  In other words, our ultimate purpose in life is to continually look more and more like Jesus.  God has a plan for us to grow to be more like His Son.

The word “conformed” in the Greek means to “morph to be like” or to “be similar” to Jesus.  Over the next 50 days, my prayer is that you experience this transformation and grow to look more like Jesus.

You may look at your spiritual life today and really question whether this is or can be a reality in your situation. You may be struggling in your walk with Christ. You may be frustrated with where you are right now.  You may feel an internal angst and frustration that you are not growing to look more like Jesus.

Here’s the good news!! This passage tells us that God has made it His priority to do this in your life. He has planned it in eternity past.

Now this process may be long, painful, and grueling, but it will be exciting, joyful, adventurous and well worth it.  Our goal is to find our ultimate satisfaction in knowing Christ more deeply.

Spend some time in prayer this morning thanking God that He predestined you to be conformed to Jesus and what He started, He will complete.

Read Philippians 1:6

Dear Father,

Your love is immense and almost hard to understand. Why in the world would you predestine me to look more and more like Jesus?  I know that you do all things for your great pleasure and for your own glory.  Grant me the desire to grow in Christ and please do a powerful work in me over the next 50 days to transform me more and more in the image of Christ.

In Christ’s powerful name,

Amen

Continuing to Confront Idolatry

What is the greatest sin in the entire Bible? Is it murder? Adultery? Homosexuality? Theft? Lying? Disobeying parents? Which is most condemned throughout both the Old and New Testament? The amazing answer is that none of these are the greatest and most heinous sin in the entire Bible. The answer: IDOLATRY.

From Genesis to Revelation, idolatry is the one overarching sin that is condemned more than any other. We see it most fully expressed in the first of the Ten Commandments.  In Exodus 20:3 God emphatically says, “You shall have no other gods before me.” In the very last verse of John’s First Epistle we find these words: “Little children, keep yourselves from idols.”

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