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Comfort or conform? (2003-09-28 - 8:02 a.m.)

I really wanted to post this one yesterday, but I did the review of Underworld instead. So I waited an extra day for this, just in case people actually read this thing.

I get a daily devotional from the Navigators via email called "Daily Discipleship." Yesterdays was really good. The lengthy passage of scripture from Ezekiel was partially depressing, but then I got to thinking. Those words are specifically to Israel. Then that made me wonder how right we are to apply the promises made in the midst of those passages to ourselves when they are, in fact, spoken specifically to the nation of Israel. We always want to receive the promises without receiving the judgments that go along with them.

Well, anyway, the real thing that I got out of this devotion yesterday was that God is not so concerned with our comfort. We all get this idea that God just really wants us to be comfortable and happy. Not so. God's primary concen for us is that we be conformed to the image of Christ. And that, readers, can be very uncomfortable.

The other thing that I wanted to include today came from yesterday's My Utmost For His Highest reading. The selection concerns the passage from Luke 9:57ff that speaks of young men coming to Jesus, asking to follow him. His responses were not at all encouraging. In fact, they were discouraging!

We certainly do not follow his example in our churches. We forget that the words of our Lord Jesus are hurtful and offensive. In fact, they are hurtful and offensive to the death of whatever needs to be put to death in us. To paraphrase…Jesus needs to “kill us a lot.” Chambers puts it this way; “If the Spirit of God brings to your mind a word of the Lord that hurts you, you may be sure that there is something He wants to hurt to death.”

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