Thursday, September 2, 2010

"A Riot of Good Works"

This past Sunday at church I heard our music pastor, Todd Murray, say a couple to times the phrase "A riot of good works." I love the picture that paints in my mind. People going crazy and so excited about doing good deeds. People having a relentless passion to do good works. The passage that instantaneously came to my mind was in Paul's letter to Titus:

"For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works." (Titus 2:11-14)

The context of Todd's words always came after speaking of the gospel. Many people love to do "good" works in communities all over the world but according to Scripture only those purchased by the blood of Jesus Christ are able to truly do good works. Why? Only those who are children of God can do good deeds for the glory of our great Savior, Jesus Christ. There are people who do good things but in their hearts they want the praise and glory. Pridefully they rob God of what he rightfully deserves. This does not mean disciples of Jesus Christ always do good deeds because sinfully we can still want the glory and praise ourselves. But, by God's grace, believers in Jesus Christ have the ability to do good deeds and do them for the sake of God's glory. These are truly good deeds.

Christian, are you zealous for good works? God has redeemed you for his own glory and one way this occurs is through our joyful service to others for the sake of the gospel. The point is not for people to think you are a good person but rather that Christ is a great Savior. "Let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven" (Matt. 5:16). Be sure you are just the instrument God is using to display his great glory and not the one stealing what rightfully belongs to our great God. For the sake of the gospel may we be a people doing "a riot of good works."

Grace upon grace,
JRL

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