Obligation or Devotion

It’s funny how things sometimes come around when you least expect it. This morning I was reading in Isaiah chapter 1.  I personally have been a little lapse in my daily devotional time, and decided Isaiah was a good place to begin investing more time and study.  So you may see a few posts sprinkled in on both Galatians and Isaiah going forward. If something strikes me as a Holy Spirit moment, you will know it!

In Isaiah chapter 1 the prophet points out that Israel is doing the things that God required. They were bringing the daily sacrifices  as prescribed in Leviticus. They were carrying out of the feasts during the seasons He had told him was necessary.. It seems like they doing everything they could to obey the Lord and yet God called all this an abomination!   He was angry with them. In fact, He says it is rebellion and sin.  How can this be?  It is simply because they were doing these things out of obligation instead of devotion.

This morning I also read a post from Don at TLP.  He was discussing how the Corinthians were upset that Paul had asked for an offering for the church at Jerusalem.  They thought he was doing something a little crooked.  Don talked about our giving, and I asked his thoughts on tithing.  Don pointed out that if we start to think we must still follow the Old Testament tithing law, we were under the whole law.  God is looking for our all, not just a tithe.  He is looking for our devotion, not our obligation.

Many times I find myself carrying out the obligations that are expected of me by God. I do my study, I write poems when He gives them to me, I pray for those who need prayer, I lead Worship in my church.  All of these are obligations that I have taken on. And at times I find myself doing them just out of obligation and not out of devotion. Do you find yourself in that situation once in awhile?

Anything we do for God should be done because we love Him and are devoted to Him, not because it is an obligation. In Psalm 51, David writes “To obey is better than sacrifice.” There are many who think they are going to heaven because they pay their tithes, go to church,  and they’re good people. They have fulfilled their obligations. But they lack devotion to God.  If God would and them to give everything and leave it behind they would probably have a reaction like the Rich Young Ruler. He walked away sad because he wasn’t willing to give all.  Am I?  Are you?

Let us always walk with the devotion that God had for us.   Isaiah went on to say that we should come and reason together -though our sins are scarlet they will be white as snow. There was no reason that God had tom give His Son.  There was no reason He should extend His mercy to us.  When we come and reason together with God, He says “I gave my all.  I expect the same from you.”    When I don’t what is my reason?

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