Tag Archive : Believers Chapel

Daily Devotional - Romans 8 - Move From Condemned To Convinced

Devotional Overview:

Christians often feel lacking, insufficient, and second-class. In a word, we feel condemned. This is because, even without noticing it, we are basing our salvation on how well we are performing as Christians. In this short meditation of Romans 8, you will learn how God wants to move you from feeling condemned to feeling convinced that nothing can separate you from the love of God.

Key Scriptures:

  • Romans 8

Devotional

What Is Our Inheritance?

In our last session we talked about the fact that you are adopted into God’s family through the death and resurrection of Jesus. He took your sin and gave you his status.

What Romans 8 goes on to explain to us about adoption is the blessing of inheritance.

As adopted children in God’s family through Christ, we are co-heirs with Christ. That means we receive what he receives. What he deserves, we are given. What he earned, we get. What grace!

But what is it that we receive? An inheritance isn’t really that exciting unless you know what you are inheriting. Well, here is the best part. Our inheritance through Jesus is God himself. What Jesus earned for us is entry into God's presence. What Jesus gives us is himself. This is better than any blessing, possession, pleasure, or reward.

The Psalmist says of God’s presence, “In your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore” (Ps. 16:11). What better inheritance could there be than the presence of God himself. In Christ, that is what we get. As you read Romans 8, bask in the joy of your inheritance. It will make the groaning of creation make all the more sense. We long to receive the full inheritance of God's presence at the return of Jesus.

Rejoice in your inheritance, my adopted brothers and sisters!

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Daily Devotional - Romans 8 - Move From Condemned To Convinced

Devotional Overview:

Christians often feel lacking, insufficient, and second-class. In a word, we feel condemned. This is because, even without noticing it, we are basing our salvation on how well we are performing as Christians. In this short meditation of Romans 8, you will learn how God wants to move you from feeling condemned to feeling convinced that nothing can separate you from the love of God.

Key Scriptures:

  • Romans 8

Devotional

Christ's Work. Our Adoption. 

In the last reading we learned about the logical argument Paul is using in Romans 8 to assure Christians of their salvation. The argument went like this:

    1. If Jesus is raised from the dead, then you can be adopted (14-16).
    2. If you have been adopted, then you have an inheritance (17).
    3. If you have an inheritance, then you have assurance (18-39).

Today, I want us to focus on the foundation for this whole argument. The foundation is found in the first four verses and is based on the finished work of Jesus.

Condemnation comes from the law. When we fall short of God's law, that is considered sin. Sin must be judged.

However, Jesus changes the equation. Jesus perfectly obeyed the law on our behalf, giving us its blessing instead of its curse. Furthermore, Jesus perfectly took the punishment of the law we deserved, cursing him so we could be blessed. Therefore, the condemnation that was upon us is gone. And the blessing that was nowhere near us has come.

This is how Paul sets up this whole chapter. He asks, "If Christ." If Christ lived perfectly, died for our sins, and was raised to give us his blessing, then nothing can separate us from the love of God. All the debt is paid. All the penalty is exacted. All the blessing is earned. All the righteousness is credited.

That is how we can be adopted. We were estranged from God because of our sin. If we came near him, our sins would be punished. Also, we had no worth or right to be in his family and live with him. That is why the finished work of Jesus works out our adoption for us.

It's like we had a really high adoption fee. Jesus paid that for us on the cross. And then, it's as if we needed to be remade into the image of our father in order to be truly made a part of the family. This is what Jesus does when he credits his good work to us. He makes us like our heavenly Dad.

As you watch the video and read through Romans 8 today, try to focus in on the completed work of Jesus and your adoption into God's family as the basis for everything else.

Welcome to the family adopted of God!

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Daily Devotional - Romans 8 - Move From Condemned To Convinced

Devotional Overview:

Christians often feel lacking, insufficient, and second-class. In a word, we feel condemned. This is because, even without noticing it, we are basing our salvation on how well we are performing as Christians. In this short meditation of Romans 8, you will learn how God wants to move you from feeling condemned to feeling convinced that nothing can separate you from the love of God.

Key Scriptures:

  • Romans 8

Devotional

The If's of Romans 8

How you feel about your relationship with God is directly dependent on who you think you are. Think about it. You already know that God is big, powerful, perfect, and just. So how can you relate to a being like that?

When we start to think that our relationship with this huge God is based on our worth and how good we are, condemnation will get a major foothold. However, if we can see our identity in Christ, our entire relationship with God will change.

Today you will read through Romans 8 again. Before you do, however, I want you to get a grasp of the chapter's layout.

Paul is making an argument against your condemnation and for your conviction throughout this text. The point of the argument is to bring about your assurance of salvation. The argument can be stated in three “if, then” statements:

    1. If Jesus was raised from the dead, then you can be adopted (14-16).
    2. If you have been adopted, then you have an inheritance (17).
    3. If you have an inheritance, then you have assurance (18-39).

Paul is trying to get you to see who you are in Christ. You are adopted by Jesus. Because of that adoption you have an inheritance. Because of that inheritance you have assurance.

Watch this introductory video which begins to unpack these three points. Then spend some time in Romans 8, trying to trace this argument through.

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Daily Devotional - Romans 8 - Move From Condemned To Convinced

Devotional Overview:

Christians often feel lacking, insufficient, and second-class. In a word, we feel condemned. This is because, even without noticing it, we are basing our salvation on how well we are performing as Christians. In this short meditation of Romans 8, you will learn how God wants to move you from feeling condemned to feeling convinced that nothing can separate you from the love of God.

Key Scriptures:

  • Romans 8

Devotional

Not "If I" But "If Christ"

Do you ever feel like you aren't good enough to be a Christian? You want to live a certain way, but often fail to do so. You think you are living a good Christian life one day and then, without warning, you are blindsided by all the corruption, sin, and death in your heart.

If you feel this way you are not alone. In fact, this is the type of person Paul just finished describing in Romans 7. So if this is you, Romans 8 is the place to look because Paul is about to tell us how to move out of those feelings of condemnation.

In the poetry video you're about to watch, you will hear the key difference between those who feel condemned and those who feel convinced. The key difference is this: Who earns your worth?

If you earn your worth before God, you will constantly feel inadequate, lacking, and condemned. But if Christ earns your worth for you, everything will change.

Throughout the next six days of this plan you will read through Romans 8 six times. Each time, you will be asked to look for something new. You will also learn how Paul is trying to get us to base our worth in Christ throughout this chapter.

Today, as you read through Romans 8 after watching the video, try to pick up the two camps of people to whom Paul is writing. Notice comparisons between flesh and Spirit, law and freedom, hostility and peace, sin and righteousness, slavery and adoption, suffering and glory, groaning and redemption, seeing and hoping, condemned and convinced. As you read ask yourself questions: Into which group do I fit? On what basis do I fit in that group? How sure am I that I am in this group? On what do I base this assurance, either negatively or positively?

Test your heart to see if, in each of these situations, you are trying to earn your own worth or if you are putting your faith in Christ's worth.

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Daily Devotional - Professional Football Players On Humility & Surrender

Devotional Overview:

Carson Wentz's Audience of One (A01) and friends discuss scriptures about staying humble and walking in surrender to the Lordship of Jesus. This Plan features Carson Wentz, Trey Burton, Nick Foles, Zach Ertz, Chris Maragos & Jordan Matthews.

Devotional

Zach Ertz - Luke 6:46 NCV

46 “Why do you call me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ but do not do what I say?

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Daily Devotional - Professional Football Players On Humility & Surrender

Devotional Overview:

Carson Wentz's Audience of One (A01) and friends discuss scriptures about staying humble and walking in surrender to the Lordship of Jesus. This Plan features Carson Wentz, Trey Burton, Nick Foles, Zach Ertz, Chris Maragos & Jordan Matthews.

Devotional

Trey Burton – Jeremiah 29:13

13 You will search for me. And when you search for me with all your heart, you will find me!

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Daily Devotional - Professional Football Players On Humility & Surrender

Devotional Overview:

Carson Wentz's Audience of One (A01) and friends discuss scriptures about staying humble and walking in surrender to the Lordship of Jesus. This Plan features Carson Wentz, Trey Burton, Nick Foles, Zach Ertz, Chris Maragos & Jordan Matthews.

Devotional

Nick Foles

Philippians 4:11-13 NCV

11. I am not telling you this because I need anything. I have learned to be satisfied with the things I have and with everything that happens. 12. I know how to live when I am poor, and I know how to live when I have plenty. I have learned the secret of being happy at any time in everything that happens, when I have enough to eat and when I go hungry, when I have more than I need and when I do not have enough. 13. I can do all things through Christ, because he gives me strength

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Daily Devotional - Freedom In Christ

Devotional Overview:

Is your spiritual life like a roller coaster, with far fewer ups than downs? Are there habits in your life over which you seem to have no control? Do you experience more anxiety than peace, more fear than faith, and more failure than success? Join Dr. Charles Stanley as he focuses on the freedom in Christ available to all believers and the truth that truly sets us free.

Key Scriptures:

  • Romans 8:1

Devotional

No Condemnation

Do you believe God likes you? “Don’t you mean, ‘loves me’?” you ask. No, likes you. Do you believe God likes you? This is one of my favorite questions to ask. The reason is it cuts through to the core of how an individual really believes God feels about him or her. So, do you think God likes you? If He were to show up in bodily form, do you think He would seek you out? Would you be someone He’d enjoy being around?
Isn’t it strange how much more comfortable we are with the concept of “love” than with the concept of “like” when it comes to God’s feelings toward us? Why do you think that’s true? Often, the reason lies in the fact that we’ve not come to grips with the real extent to which God has forgiven us. Consequently, we live with a subtle sense of condemnation. It’s as if there’s always a dark cloud separating us from God. We say we’re forgiven, but in our hearts, we’re never fully convinced God isn’t still a little angry with us.

The truth is, every reason God had for being angry with us was dealt with at Calvary. Our forgiveness is so complete that God is not only free to love us, He can like us as well. Think about this: “There is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus” (Rom. 8:1). If you’ve placed your trust in Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, the Bible says you are positionally in Christ. And once you were placed into Christ, you were separated from the guilt that once brought divine condemnation. You’re not condemned. Christ was condemned on your behalf, and now you’re free.
“But,” you may ask, “why do I feel so condemned? Why don’t I feel forgiven?” It’s probably because you’ve not made up your mind to take God at His Word. Instead, you’ve measured your worthiness and acceptability by your performance. To be free from feelings of condemnation, you must renew your mind to this powerful truth: “There is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.”

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Daily Devotional - Freedom In Christ

Devotional Overview:

Is your spiritual life like a roller coaster, with far fewer ups than downs? Are there habits in your life over which you seem to have no control? Do you experience more anxiety than peace, more fear than faith, and more failure than success? Join Dr. Charles Stanley as he focuses on the freedom in Christ available to all believers and the truth that truly sets us free.

Key Scriptures:

  • Romans 12:2
  • Proverbs 23:7

Devotional

Transformed

Most of us have had the frustrating experience of making a sincere commitment only to find that several days later we’ve abandoned it. I call it the “youth camp syndrome.” At many of the churches I pastored through the years, the youth attended camp just about every summer. As is the case with many camps, we always ended the week with a commitment service. Each year was the same. Everyone cried and promised God the moon—no more lying, cursing, cheating, smoking, drinking, and on and on it went. Unfortunately, most of those promises were broken before we ever made it back to the church parking lot the next afternoon.

I believe most of the decisions made during those sessions were sincere. The problem was the follow through. While the youth were clear on the “oughts” and “ought nots,” it was the “how to’s” that remained difficult to implement. And the same is true for all of us—no matter what our age.

Because of his background, the apostle Paul knew all too well the frustration of knowing what to do without knowing how to do it. No doubt it was his own experience that made him sensitive to his readers’ needs in this area. And so in one perfectly-penned statement he summarized the key to consistent change: “by the renewing of your mind” (Rom. 12:2).

Paul knew that our behavior is directly affected by the way we think. For real change to take place externally, there must first be a change in our thinking. Until we get involved in the process of renewing our minds, any behavioral change is going to be short-lived.

Renewing the mind is a little like refinishing furniture. It’s a two-stage process. It involves taking off the old and replacing it with the new. The old is the lies you’ve learned to tell or were taught by those around you; it’s the attitudes and ideas that have become a part of your thinking but don’t reflect reality. The new is the truth. To renew your mind is to involve yourself in the process of allowing God to bring to the surface the lies you’ve mistakenly accepted and replace them with truth. To the degree that you do this, your behavior—and your entire life—will be completely transformed.

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Daily Devotional - Freedom In Christ

Devotional Overview:

Is your spiritual life like a roller coaster, with far fewer ups than downs? Are there habits in your life over which you seem to have no control? Do you experience more anxiety than peace, more fear than faith, and more failure than success? Join Dr. Charles Stanley as he focuses on the freedom in Christ available to all believers and the truth that truly sets us free.

Key Scriptures:

  • Romans 6:7
  • 1 Corinthians 1:18
  • John 8:36

Devotional

Dead Men Don’t Sin

Freedom begins and ends at the cross of Christ. At Calvary, the penalty for our sin was dealt with once and for all. It was there that Christ was punished on our behalf so that we would be free of sin’s debt. But something else took place at the cross that equally affects our freedom. Not only was the penalty of sin dealt with that day, but the power of sin as well. Christ’s death and resurrection marked the end of sin’s power to control the believer. Just as sin could not control the Son of God, so it is powerless to control those who’ve been placed into Christ by faith.

Unfortunately, many who would nod in agreement with the above statement are anything but free experientially. They’re still slaves to the same habits and sin that plagued them in their pre-Christian days. There’s no victory over sin. There’s little joy. Consequently, there’s little reason to keep struggling. And so for many believers, their motto becomes, “Well … nobody’s perfect.”
God doesn’t intend for us to continue to live as slaves to sin. The message of the cross is freedom from sin—both its penalty and its power. While it’s true we’ll always be temptable, it’s not true that we must give in to temptation. The moment you were saved, you were given new life—Christ’s life. You died to your old life—a life dominated by the power and lure of sin. Your new life is the same life that enabled Christ to walk this earth for 33 years without sinning. It’s the very life that enabled Him to walk out of the grave unaffected by death. On the day you were born again, you became a new person with brand-new potential in regard to sin and death.

To make this historical and theological truth a reality, we must appropriate it. That is, we must accept it as fact and act on it. As long as we’re convinced to the contrary, we’ll continue to live as slaves.
Have you acknowledged your freedom from sin’s power? Have you been claiming it? Or have you been relying on your feelings as indicators of your relationship to sin? Your feelings will tell you that nothing has changed; everything is as it’s always been.

But God says you’re different. He says you’re dead to sin ... and dead people are free from the power of sin. Who will you choose to believe today?

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