September 09, 2008

Life Worthy of the Gospel

Philippians 1:27-30

Whatever happens, conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ.
Philippians 1:27


Is a corporation wrong to expect its vice presidents to be dependable ambassadors of the company vision? Is a local church disrespectful of its staff when it expects the church’s priorities to be honored? Is Christianity betraying human freedom when it embraces the moral standards of Jesus Christ? The answer to each of these questions is a resounding no.

Followers of Jesus are to conduct themselves “in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ.” They are to develop the mind of Christ so that every thought becomes obedient to his truth. They are to emulate the life of Christ, submitting to his will no matter what the cost. They are to stand united with fellow believers in Christlike opposition to Satan. They are to stand up for the name and purpose of Jesus in this world.

Today many people live self-absorbed lives. They are ambassadors for themselves; they set their own standards; and their main goal is self-fulfillment. Yet Jesus said, “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me” (Matthew 16:24). Perhaps the psalmist best summarizes the worthy life: “Your statutes are my delight; they are my counselors” (Psalm 119:24).

What brings you the greatest joy? A life worthy of the gospel or one that conforms to the world?

Dear Lord, forgive me when I conform to the patterns of this world. Renew and enable me to conduct myself in a manner worthy of your glorious name. In Jesus, Amen.

About the author — Calvin Hoogendoorn

Rev. Calvin Hoogendoorn serves as senior pastor of First Christian Reformed Church in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Previously he served two churches in Illinois. He and his wife, Carla, have three daughters.

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