Devotion to Christ

Nov 15, 2023 | The Chuck Wagon

“But I am afraid that, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness,
your minds will be led astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ.”
2 Cor. 11:3; NASB

One of the beautiful things about a life of devotion to Christ is its simplicity. Yes, you read that right. It is simplistic, but not easy. You simply crucify (kill) the flesh and live as Christ did. When we first receive our salvation, the excitement we experience drives us. We excitedly go to church, praise God, and pray every day. That “honeymoon” period eventually ends, and we become “Burger King” Christians; we want it our way. This thinking takes us on a journey of figuring out how what we want aligns with what God wants. We memorize one-liners from scripture that endorse our own agenda, not considering scriptural context. We listen to teachers who say things that sound good and make us feel good and accepted. This all works wonderfully as long as life doesn’t throw any challenges your way. Accepting Christ as your Lord and Savior does not remove the challenges, and when they come, along comes the enemy with his craftiness.

How did the craftiness of the serpent deceive Eve? He got her to focus on what she wanted more than on what God wanted. In fact, she didn’t even know she wanted what she ended up wanting until the serpent came along! We can spend hours on all the nuances within the story of the fall of man, but the root of the ordeal is simple. If Eve had simply kept repeating what God wanted (or didn’t want) in response to the serpent’s temptations, she would not have taken the first bite. It was simple, do not eat “…from the fruit of the tree which is in the middle of the garden…” (Ge. 3:3). The serpent presented her with an alternative way of looking at God’s word. He tried this same tactic on Jesus. We read about it in chapter four of Matthew and Luke. Jesus answered Satan’s temptations with God’s word. He didn’t get into any deep theological debate. It wasn’t necessary. He simply quoted God’s word in response to whatever the devil had to say. The evil one eventually left, defeated.

God’s word is still our best defense against the devil’s craftiness. I’m not talking about reciting memorized verses, however. What is the best and most effective plan for preventing your mind from being led astray is consistent time spent reading your Bible. It does not have to be enormous amounts of time. Consistency is the key. The importance of daily time set aside specifically for reading Scripture cannot be overstated. The Holy Spirit ministers to our hearts through His word. It brings peace and comfort through the most trying conditions. This simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ is found in prayerfully reading and meditating on His word every day. When things get complicated, make it a point to sit, pray, and read. Let the Holy Spirit guide you back into simple devotion. There is no need to force it. It will just happen as you read and pray. You will find this practice to be so fulfilling you will not allow yourself to miss a day.

God bless and have a great week

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