Tag Archives: obedience

“Speak and act as those who are going to be judged by the law that gives freedom, because judgment without mercy will be shown to anyone who has not been merciful. Mercy triumphs over judgment.”  (James 2:12-13, NIV)
The disciple of Jesus should endeavor to be merciful in all of his or her judgments because the measure by which we judge others shall be used to judge us; and the mercy we extend to others shall be returned to us.
This does not mean that we should ever excuse evil, or turn a blind eye to wrong-doers.  Yet, even the harshest judgments — rightfully made — can be tempered with mercy if sympathy is shown, and if the doorway to reconciliation is left open.
The disciple of Jesus speaks and acts as one whose words and deeds shall be called to account in both this world, and in the world to come.  – Luther

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“Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it.”  (Hebrews 13:2, NIV)

During the funeral service for a dear friend and early mentor of mine, her former pastor commented on how my friend and her husband were models of hospitality.

“Hospitality is inviting someone to inhabit your space,” the pastor said.  I had not heard a more simple yet profound definition of the word “hospitality” before — or since.

The writer of the book of Hebrews reminds us to invite strangers to inhabit our space.  Our spaces are usually cultivated, comfortable, and secure.  Yet, the stranger often enjoys none of those benefits because he is often far, far from his own home.

It is through the practice of hospitality that we expose ourselves to the possibility of serving one of God’s angels; the possibility of making a new friend; and the certainty of being obedient to God.  – Luther

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“In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:”.  (Philippians 2:5, NIV)

The thought in today’s verse doesn’t end with the “:”.  Paul goes on to specify the attitudes that reflect the mind of Christ, which are:

a. Regarding gifts as opportunities. . . (Verse 6)  Some gifts you have, and some gifts you are!  Each are given to us for service, not for status!

b. . . . in servitude. . . (Verse 7) “Service” is an act.  On the other hand, “servitude” is a condition.  Do you and I maintain an attitude of servitude in our interactions with others?

c. . . . through humble obedience. (Verse 8)   A star athlete falls short of his or her potential when the coach is not obeyed.  Likewise, we must do, go, and be as the Holy Spirit directs; not for our own glory, but for the glory of God.

Are you cultivating “the same mindset as Christ Jesus” in your relationships with others?  – Luther

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