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Daily Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries

"Skin Deep?"

February 21, 2007

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Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised. Proverbs 31:30

Nose jobs, face-lifts, augmentations, reductions, tucks, liposuction, and many more of these procedures are shown in graphic detail on the television “makeover” shows. A casual spectator might soon come to the conclusion that nobody likes the way they look. That’s probably because most of us don’t consider ourselves to be as handsome as Mark Anthony or beautiful as Cleopatra.

Writing a century after Anthony and Cleopatra lived, the Greek historian Plutarch said, “For her beauty, as we are told, was in itself not altogether incomparable, nor such as to strike those who saw her; but converse with her had an irresistible charm, and her presence, combined with the persuasiveness of her discourse and the character which was somehow diffused about her behavior towards others, had something stimulating about it …” (Plutarch, The Parallel Lives – The Life of Anthony, paragraph 197) So, if beauty wasn’t the big gun in Cleopatra’s arsenal, what was? In short, Cleopatra was charming but not charming enough to save herself or those around her.

This is why I would like the readers of this devotion to take a look at the Scripture taken from Proverbs 31. It says, “Charm is deceitful and beauty is vain…” The Lord knew what He was talking about when He inspired those words to be written. The truth of God’s thinking is verified when we think upon beautiful movie stars and popular politicians. Nobody can be more charming than an elected public servant when he is wooing the voters, but when a politician’s day is past; those who had once shouted his praises quickly forget him. Similarly, movie stars, whose beauty was once proclaimed as being timeless, find themselves cast aside and forgotten when their appearance declines.

Sad, isn’t it? Without Jesus, and the “makeover” He gives to those who believe in Him as Savior, life can be pretty disheartening. Christians rejoice because they have been given a permanent makeover from the Savior defeating the devil, His suffering, and sacrifice. Our souls that were once befouled and blackened by sin have been washed clean, and we will live each day forgiven and saved. They have been given a wonderful makeover that will not vanish.

THE PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, lead me to realize that You are the only One Who can remake me; Who can give me a life which is worth living, which will always have meaning and purpose. In Your Name. Amen.

Today's Bible Readings: Exodus 34-35    Mark 3:20-35

Change Their World. Change Yours. This changes everything.

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