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It Is Good for the Heart

May 4, 2014

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It Is Good  for the Heart

Often,  when people are concerned  about getting  to heaven,  they  will do everything  within their power  to try  and make sure  they get there.     That’s when they create problems  for themselves.     Seeing  and listening  to other people  go through certain rituals  that seem very religious  and pious,  they will feel  that those rituals  will also make them  appear religious  and devout  in God’s sight.

These rituals  might include rules  on what they can eat,  the way they say prayers,  the way they show repentance,  a monastic life style,  the clothes they wear,  the honoring  of saints,  and various acts  that are meant  to show  their devoutness.     But,  the problem is  that as we read through God’s word  to each  and every one  of us,  there is absolutely  no mention  of getting  to heaven  through any  of these various  religious acts.

So,  what does God tell us?     One helpful verse  is Hebrews 13:9,

Do not  be carried away  by varied  and strange teachings;  for it is good  for the heart  to be strengthened  by grace,  not by foods,  through  which those who were thus occupied  were not benefited.

The whole book  of Hebrews  talks a lot  about the importance  of living  by faith  —  Christ being the fulfillment  of many Old Testament prophecies  of a Savior  —  redemption  only through faith  in the work  of Christ Jesus  —  and  accepting  and trusting  God’s discipline  and leading.     All this is God’s grace towards us.

God Almighty wants  our hearts  “to be strengthened  by grace”.     God definitely does not want us  to get  “carried away  by varied  and strange teachings.”     These  “varied and strange teachings”  are all the man-made rules  for so-called holy living  that are not a part  of God’s desire for us.     All these man-made teachings  cause us  to not trust  and love God  as we should.     How is that?

When we feel  that we must be obeying  various religious rituals  in order  to earn God’s approval,  we are always worried  about whether or not  we have done enough  to please God.     These  “varied and strange teachings”  can even make us bitter  towards God  and feel like we’re “under His thumb”  of rules and regulations  that are impossible  to keep perfectly.     They are not  of faith.

Worst of all,  imagining that we must follow these rules  and regulations  is actually  a rejection  of Jesus  as our Savior.     All  of God’s word teaches us that we are saved  by grace  through faith  in what Jesus has done  for us.     Jesus has lived the perfect life  for us.     We should not imagine that what Jesus has done for us is not good enough.     What Jesus did for us  is perfect,  holy,  and totally acceptable  in God’s sight.     Our sinful actions cannot  make Jesus’ work better  —  so we should not  be trying  to add our so-called pious actions  to what Jesus  has already perfectly accomplished  on our behalf.

Be happy  in what Jesus has done.     When  we see  and accept  the beauty  of Jesus’ love  for us  —  and accept His work  as our only way  of redemption  —  “it is good  for the heart  to be strengthened  by grace.”

We are relieved.     We live  in God’s grace  and according  to His love.     In this goodness,  we say,  “Hallelujah!     LORD,  Your grace  is more than sufficient  to save us.”

Love,
Margaret

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A Christian devotional  to glorify  the LORD of lords  and GOD of gods.

A 2.67 year old says  I Pledge Allegiance

Pray for our country.

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Handel’s Hallelujah Chorus

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Handel’s Hallelujah Chorus by the Yupiq Eskimo village of Quinhagak, Alaska

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The LORD  made this day, let us rejoice  and be glad  in Him.

Psalm 118:24

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The word of the LORD is tried;

He is a shield  to all  who take refuge  in Him.

Psalm 18:30

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Sing for joy  in the LORD,  O you righteous ones;

Praise is becoming  to the upright.

Psalm 33:1

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How blessed are those  who dwell  in Thy house!

They are ever praising Thee.

Psalm 84:4

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Just as a father  has compassion  on his children,

So the LORD  has compassion  on those who fear Him.

Psalm 103:13

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O give thanks  to the LORD,  for He is good;

For His lovingkindness  is everlasting.

Psalm 107:1

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Glory in His holy name;

Let the heart  of those who seek the LORD  be glad.

Psalm 105:3

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Not that I have already obtained it,  or have already  become perfect, but I press on  in order that  I may  lay hold  of that for which also  I was laid hold of  by Christ Jesus.

Philippians 3:12

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