Romans 8:12-17 - So then, brothers, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh. For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, "Abba! Father!" The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with Him in order that we may also be glorified with Him.
Have you ever considered what a strange position we stand in as far as our relationship to God goes? If you look at our situation logically, He's the one person in the whole universe we should be most afraid of. He is holy, we are unholy; He is good, and we are ... not. That should make us worst enemies, right? Add to that the fact that He's all-powerful, knows everything, and is impossible to escape from because He's everywhere. Really, God should be our worst nightmare!
But God took steps to change that. He knew that we were terrified of Him, and that we had good reason; and so He came into our world as a human baby, someone nobody could be afraid of. He made Himself visible and knowable; people could listen to Him, talk to Him, and even argue with Him, without getting burned to a crisp! And all along His aim was to rescue us from the power of sin, death, and the devil. He would lay down His life on the cross to rescue us; with His own blood He would remake us; and with His resurrection He would give us life forever—no longer as God's enemies, but as God's own dearly loved children.
Now look where we stand! God is holy—but so are we, through Jesus Christ. God is good, and we borrow His goodness because Jesus has saved us. Our sins are washed away, and our guilt is gone. Now we stand in God's presence and speak to Him as beloved children of a Father who loves them with all His heart. And all God's great power that used to terrify us? Now it's our comfort—for the same God who knows everything, exists everywhere, and has all power, uses those gifts to take care of us.
This is what Paul is getting at when he says, "For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, 'Abba! Father!'" Now we can show our problems and weakness to God without fear, saying, "Dear Father, please help me with this problem." He will not chide us. He will welcome us and help us. We are safe with Him forever.
WE PRAY: Dear Father, help me to trust in You especially when I am weak and need Your help and forgiveness. Amen.
This Daily Devotion was written by Dr. Kari Vo.
1. Who is one person you can trust with your painful secrets, knowing they will never chide you for them?
2. What would it be like to trust God that way?
3. What evidence do you see that suggests God is safe to trust that way?
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