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October 28, 2014

THE GEORGIA CAPITOL DEVOTIONAL - 28 October 2014

Godly living — according to Scripture — necessitates that believers in the Lord Jesus Christ maintain wise attitudes toward the world in which we live, specifically with regard to the temporal values of the world in which we live, and the eternal values of our faith in God and His holy Word. In Titus 2:11-12, we find a biblical principle that should be a matter of constant attention and focus as we live in this world and yet we understand that this world (as it is, and as we know it) is not our home.

Titus 2:11 begins an emphasis upon Christian living, and contextually it follows a listing of responsibilities for various groups, some of which are moral in nature. For instance, as a reason for the teaching concerning moral obligations, such as the moral duty of a slave to not steal from his master (2:10), we find attention upon “the grace of God that brings salvation” which has appeared, a reference that is probably with respect to the first coming of Jesus Christ. The grace of God is here conceived as a dynamic that manifests in Christian ethical obedience and not merely the forgiveness of sins.

The principle of Scripture that teaches us how to live godly and demonstrate wise attitudes as believers is communicated in verses 11-12. We are instructed to continually oppose the wickedness of this present age. “The grace of God” teaches us “to deny ungodliness and worldly desires [passions] and to live sensibly [self-controlled], righteously [upright] and godly [lives] in the present age.” What Scripture is communicating to us is that there is an aspect of the dynamic of God’s grace in which our knowledge of God’s kindness in salvation leads us naturally into the desire to deny the normal lusts of the present age.

After this desire has been created sovereignly by grace, the enablement also follows by grace. All Christian “denial” (opposition) to the wickedness of this present age is energized by grace, that is, the inward activity of the Holy Spirit. In other words, Scripture teaches that the reason that Christians ought to obey is due to God’s grace, which has been manifest in Jesus Christ, and is available to every type and class of man and woman—every tribe and tongue and people and nation.  God’s grace has been manifest, and because God’s grace has been manifest, all humanity ought to respond with a resolute “Yes, I will delight to do that” to the commands of God’s word.

Grace transforms! Scripture reminds us that the salvation-bringing grace of God has been manifested to all kinds of people who are Christians, and that that salvation-bringing grace of God has not only brought forgiveness, but also it has brought a transformation.

For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men, instructing us to deny ungodliness and worldly desires and to live sensibly, righteously and godly in the present age, (Titus 2:11-12)

Interim Bible Study

REMINDER: next Tuesday (4th of November)

is the monthly (interim) Capitol Commission Bible Study

Room 123 CAP, Georgia Capitol, at 12 Noon