Daily Devotion - October 22, 2020 - Humility --> Obedience --> Love

Pastor: Connie Belmore

Daily Devotion – October 22, 2020
Reading: Romans 13:1-10
Weekly Theme: True Humility

Today: Humility à Obedience à Love

Sometimes as I start these devotions it feels like a broken record… we live in trying times; times of division and distasteful discourse. It is an election year and as I type this, I have removed myself from the front room where my husband is watching the presidential debate. I just don’t feel like listening to what I feel will be an unpleasant exchange between two people who want to be our leader and a leader in our world; yet it seems that they are not able to have a decent exchange with one another. Romans 13 reminds us that we are supposed to respect these leaders because they either are currently in or have been appointed to offices that should be worthy of respect. This passage is often misinterpreted because it refers to authority which has been established by God.

There are four very clear statements that will help us better understand this Scripture in proper context: Statement #1: This passage which calls us to subject to governing authorities is based on the premise that these governing leaders are established by God…not people. Statement #2: We should not just submit to the authorities just because we are afraid of punishment but because it is a matter of conscience; Statement #3: If you owe taxes, pay taxes so that those who work full time for the government might be paid; like it or not, if you want the government to be responsible for certain functions, it comes at great cost to include salaries of those who are carrying out these functions; and Statement #4: The only continuous debt we should have is to love others. Love is fulfillment of the law and is summed up in the one command to love neighbor. So how do these statements pertain to us during these trying and difficult times?

The bottom line of this passage rests in Paul’s call to love one another. Verse 6 says “for whoever loves others has fulfilled the law”. If you and I truly have the love of God in us, then we are not going to commit adultery, murder, steal or lie. The secret to living a humble and lawful life is to choose to love God enough to obey God’s commands which in addition to loving God includes loving others as we love ourselves. With humility in our hearts, if we love God, and we love others, God will take care of the rest. If leaders are not effective and not for the greater good of God’s kingdom, the stories of God’s Word remind us that God will ensure that any leaders who are ungodly will eventually not prevail. A humble spirit stirs and motivates us to love; love fulfills the law of obedience and puts on full display the love of God to others. To rephrase...Humility leads us to obedience which moves us to love. So let us pray for humility which ultimately results  in an everlasting love!

Dear God, we admit to being overwhelmed about what is right and wrong. We need your Word and your laws to guide us as we try to identify where we have fallen short and then to reflect on all that is good in our lives and in the lives of others. Help us with your humble Spirit as we seek to love others, especially those who are difficult to love.  Help us to always humbly reflect your love as Jesus did... in whose name we pray. Amen.

 
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