Devotions

THERE BUT FOR THE GRACE OF GOD GO I
Titus 3:2-4
26

OCTOBER

 

Rev. James Beggs

Paul, secondly, encouraged them not to forget the kind of people they were before they were saved (3). He does it for a perfectly good reason (2). In the exceedingly sinful situation in which they found themselves, these Christians might have been tempted to harshly condemn the unconverted people they rubbed shoulders with in the social and public life of their day. Such an attitude was quite understandable because many of these folks were profligate and ungodly.
Paul, however, is tempering their mindset by reminding them that before their conversion they were just as evil and profligate as them! He was engendering the spirit, “There, but for the grace of God, go I.” The sequel to that was that they should pray earnestly for their ungodly neighbours and believe that God in His power and grace could save them.
The assessment of their previous life, as set out in verse 3, is a true and faithful one. This was designed to do two things. It fostered in their redeemed hearts a spirit of thanksgiving and praise that God had chosen them to salvation. What a wonderful change He had made in their lives! In it, “the kindness and love of God appeared” (4). Because of what the Lord had done for them, they should seek to manifest kindness and love to the souls of the lost and needy all around them. Then, again, it encouraged a spirit of humility and saved them from arrogance and pride. The danger was that they might adopt a position of proud superiority which would repel their acquaintances instead of winning them to Jesus Christ.
In light of that challenge, let us maintain a prayerful concern for the ungodly – all those living in the kingdom of darkness and walking in the shadow of death – and seek their salvation by bringing the gospel of Christ before them at every opportunity.
Daily devotions are from the book “Footprints of Faith” edited by Dr. Alan Cairns.
Copyright 2003 – All Rights Reserved.
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