- Is 65:3 All day long they insult me to my face by worshipping idols in their sacred gardens. They burn incense on pagan alters.
- Is 65:24 I will answer them before they even call to me. While they are still talking about their needs, I will go ahead and answer their prayers!
- Ps 124:8 Our help is from the Lord, who made heavens and earth
- 2 Cor 2:14-15 But thank God! He has made us his captives and continues to lead us along in Christ’s triumphant processions. Now he uses us to spread the knowledge of Christ everywhere like a sweet perfume. Our lives are a Christ-like fragrance rising up to God.
- 2 Cor 3:2-3 The only letter of recommendation we need is you yourselves. Your lives are letters written in our hearts, everyone can read it and recognize our good work among you. Clearly, you are a letter from Christ showing the result of our ministry among you. This “letter” is written not with pen and ink, but with the Spirit of the living God, it is carved not on tablets of stone, but on human hearts.
- 2 Cor 3:18 So all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord, who is the Spirit, makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image.
My heart is saddened this morning thinking about believers whose lives are controlled by things other than God. We read in 2 Cor 2:14-16 that God wants our lives to be the sweet aroma of Christ. Then in chapter 3 he uses the picture of a letter of recommendation. Paul says, “You are our letter of recommendation.” When people see you, and witness your life, they will know that you are a letter from Christ delivered by us. What kind of recommendation are these believers bringing? Is it a letter than will immediately communicate that it is coming from Christ?
In Isaiah 65:3 God rebukes the people of Israel for insulting him to his face by worshipping idols. It’s insulting to God when we allow something else to control our lives. Like Paul David Tripp says in “Instruments in the Redeemers hands;”
- Everyone seeks some kind of treasure.
- Your treasure will control your heart.
- What controls your heart will control your behavior. (“No one can serve two masters.”)
Matt 6:21 tells us that where our treasure is, there our heart will be also. 2 Cor 3:18 shows where our treasure should be. Beholding the glory of the Lord. As we set our hearts on the glory of the Lord, and that becomes our treasure, God says, “We will be transformed into the same image.”
God loves us and longs for our lives to reflect him. Paul described how he was laboring like a woman giving birth, longing for Christ to be formed in his disciples (Gal 4:19) Ps 124:8 reminds us that our help comes from the Lord. Isaiah 65:24 God is waiting and ready to answer that prayer. “I will answer them before they even call to me. While they are still talking about their needs, I will go ahead and answer their prayers!”
I pray that Christ will be ever increasingly formed in your hearts.
I pray that God’s glory showing through your life will become the treasure that controls your hearts.
I pray that you will be the sweet aroma of Christ, and His letter of recommendation to all who read / witness your life.