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February 21, 2024

REJOICE IN THE LORD


TODAY’S SCRIPTURE

Whatever happens, my dear brothers and sisters, rejoice in the Lord. I never get tired of telling you these things, and I do it to safeguard your faith. Watch out for those dogs, those people who do evil, those mutilators who say you must be circumcised to be saved. For we who worship by the Spirit of God are the ones who are truly circumcised. We rely on what Christ Jesus has done for us. We put no confidence in human effort,

Philippians 3:1-3 NLT

 

TODAY’S THOUGHT

Paul has used the word joy or rejoice eight times already in his letter. Again, he reminds them again to “rejoice in the Lord.” Recognize that he doesn’t tell them to rejoice in the bad things happening to them. He tells them to rejoice in the Lord despite what may be going on in their lives. 

 

We can take joy in the Lord even when our present circumstances are uncomfortable, difficult, or confusing. Our joy does not come from earthly things but from our relationship with the Lord. 

 

Then Paul warns them about the Judaizers who were teaching you had to obey Jewish law to be saved. They were telling the Gentiles they had to be circumcised to be saved. Paul called them “dogs.” This was a very derogatory term that attacked these false teachers. 

 

Paul wants us to know our salvation is based on the work of Jesus on the cross and there is no human effort that can accomplish salvation. We are saved by grace through faith not by works. 

 

In almost every church there are those who contend you must do this or do that, or not do this or that. There are always those who want to add to the simplicity of the gospel of faith in Jesus. We should always be careful not to fall into the camp of the “dogs.”

 

TODAY’S PRAYER

Holy Spirit help me not to impose laws on others or myself. Help me remember it is by faith through grace I am saved.

“Scroll down to share what you feel God is saying based on today’s reading.”

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Had a conversation with my friend who assumed God is punishing her because things haven’t been looking up. I told Her we must have faith through all seasons even when it doesn’t look clear.

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