DEVOTION, January 18, 2021
The Bible speaks of union with Christ. Union with Christ is no peripheral matter. It separates true Christians from pseudo-Christians. It separates the wheat of true faith from the weeds of hypocrisy. Yes, within the church of Jesus Christ you find weeds; persons who claim to be Christians but whose daily lives reveal something different. When Paul wanted the Corinthians to examine themselves to see if they were true Christians, what did he tell them to do? He did not ask them to recite the basic doctrines of the faith, or ask if they were properly baptized. Both of these matters are important to our Christian faith, but Paul considered something else more fundamental. He said to the Corinthians, “Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves. Do you not realize that Jesus Christ is in you — unless, of course, you fail the test” (2 Cor. 13:5).
Paul invites us to take a look within our own hearts. When you are alone, when you are quiet, and you look within, what do you find? Do you realize that Jesus is there with you? Paul suggests that when we take this inward look we will know if Jesus is present. His presence is such an overwhelming reality, He cannot abide within our hearts and we remain unaware of His presence. Paul does not explain the nature of this indwelling. It is a great mystery, but those in whom Jesus dwells are not ignorant of His presence. It is one mark of true faith. When you examine yourself do you pass this test, or fail?
Father, Your Word gives us a simple test to determine if our faith is real. I pray that our church family will all pass the test, knowing the presence of Jesus within their souls. In His blessed name, I pray, Amen.