September 26, 2017
THE GEORGIA CAPITOL DEVOTIONAL - 26 September 2017
Perseverance is one of the most frequent words used throughout the New Testament Epistles. Christians are continually exhorted to preserve. Why? The reason is because we experience challenges, difficulties, and opposition that prevent us from persevering. Consequently, we find the continual encouragement to persevere.
Most people were not familiar with The Lord of the Rings prior to the release of the movie. Perhaps now most are, at least, familiar with the general plot. One of the primary characters, Frodo, must bring the accursed “ring of power” (a symbol of evil) to be destroyed in Mordor, where it was forged by Sauron, the Dark Lord, who is the primary antagonist. Throughout the fiction series (whether the book or movie), Frodo’s perseverance is apparent. Frodo is always aware of the tremendous duty that is his alone. Realizing the challenges, difficulties, and opposition to persevere, Frodo remarks repeatedly, “I know what I must do.” Scripture teaches us that same perseverance.
Hebrews 12:1-2 - Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
We are taught by both example and precept to persevere (in the lives of Abraham, Joseph, Moses, David, Daniel, Paul, and others). Repeatedly, the Bible exhorts the people of God to persevere. If we live solely to please ourselves, it is certain we will not follow the example of Christ who lived to please the Father and to help others. To consider events and people and situations only in regards to their effect upon oneself is to live miserably. The supreme example of perseverance is the Lord Jesus Christ, “who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame.”
Our Lord persevered, and He is our supreme example in Romans 15. The specific relevance of the example of Jesus finds application in verses 5-13 with regard to attitudes toward “one another.” The “perseverance” and “encouragement” that one derives from reading the Old Testament, practicing the behavior of Jesus Christ, and serving one another grants God’s people the ability “to be of the same mind with one another according to Christ Jesus.”
How valuable would it be for fellow members of the Capitol community — who are Christians — to speak with “one accord” and “with voice glorify the Lord God”? Would we witness revival in Georgia? Ask yourself whether your actions demonstrate belief that you are the answer to the needs of Georgia, or whether your behavior demonstrates that God is the answer. After assessing yourself honestly, what would you need to change “to be of the same mind . . . according to Christ Jesus”?
REMINDER: for the month of October,is Thursday, 17 October (in lieu of a schedule conflict)Room 123 CAP, Georgia Capitol, @ 12 Noon