Memory/Meditation Verse: But I want you to be wise about what is good, yet innocent about what is evil. The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. The grace of our Lord Jesus be with you. ~ Rom 16:19b-20 (HCSB)
Came across these verses in my quiet time the other day. Just couldn't navigate my mind away from from them. Another golden find for this time of my life. Another set of scripture to turn into a most powerful prayer!!
But whats the story surrounding this heavenly find?
Paul is closing his letter to the Roman church. He is preparing them for his visit. He wanted to present the gospel and its implication to their present life and their life in eternity. He is proud of their spiritual growth and the spiritual fruits they have established for eternity. He is appealing his readers to work out their Christian faith in practical ways, both in the church and in the world. Read his words to the church again in the Amplified version:
I would have you well versed and wise as to what is good and innocent and guileless as to what is evil. And the God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah) be with you.
No other letter written by Paul so profoundly addresses the Christian walk. The Christian walk. This has really laid heavy on my heart and soul these past few months. The whole concept of living and breathing Jesus in our everyday, not just at home or at church where it tends to be easier but in the world.
Jesus lived bolding in the world. He didn't shy away from the sinners or even their places. He could be dab smack in the center of the Pharisees home and still not be one of them. That is want I want of my life. To be in the world but not of the world but clearly visibly belonging to Jesus.
Do not be conformed to this world (this age), [fashioned after and adapted to its external, superficial customs], but be transformed (changed) by the [entire] renewal of your mind [by its new ideals and its new attitude], so that you may prove [for yourselves] what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God, even the thing which is good and acceptable and perfect [in His sight for you]. ~ Rom 12:2 (Amplified)
To be wise about what is good. This begins in knowing God and loving Him above all else. Beth Moore put it so well in her devotional book Jesus Day-by-Day:
"The exquisite beauty of loving Christ is that it makes it impossible to keep only one commandment. The Word tells us that the person who truly loves God will pursue the obedient life and be far more likely to persevere in trials. Loving God is the vital lifeline to all other commandments." (pp.65)
[And He did it in order] that we might be justified by His grace (by His favor, wholly undeserved), [that we might be acknowledged and counted as conformed to the divine will in purpose, thought, and action], and that we might become heirs of eternal life according to [our] hope. ~ Titus 3:7 (Amplified)
Christ walked His journey here on earth so that we could follow in His footsteps. His grace and mercy through Calvary should empower us to live to do good in His name. It should become what our living is about. Can you say that? My living too often has just been about me. Waisted living. Once again, in these verses I hear His whisper on my heart...
But still, I want you to understand what is good and not have anything to do with evil. Then God, who gives peace, will soon crush Satan under your feet. I pray that our Lord Jesus will be kind to you. (Contemporary English Version)
Seeking the good, staying away from evil. And the outcome? This is what is so awesome about these verses...read it in the Message version:
I want you also to be smart, making sure every “good” thing is the real thing. Don’t be gullible in regard to smooth-talking evil. Stay alert like this, and before you know it the God of peace will come down on Satan with both feet, stomping him into the dirt. Enjoy the best of Jesus!
That is so calling out a victory dance!! That's the kind of victory I want to see in my own life-the peace of God coming down and stomping anything of satan right into to the ground!! Then to live to enjoy the best of Jesus. That's living conformed!
I want you to be wise about good things and pure about sinful things. God, Who is our peace, will soon crush Satan under your feet. May the loving-favor of our Lord Jesus be yours. (NLV)
That's living conformed and living in His favor-enjoying the best of Jesus!! Let's make it a goal to live each day to enjoy the best of Jesus here on earth!!
Search for the Lord and for his strength; continually seek him. ~ 1 Chronicles 16:11 (NLT)