FIRST TO THE LORD! (Part #1) 11-3-2013

posted Nov 2, 2013, 7:01 AM by Dale Barnes

“...they gave themselves first to the Lord and then to us in keeping with God’s will.” (2Co.8:5 NIV)

There is an old saying; “First things, First!”  The apostle is commending these Macedonian Christians because “they got it right”.  They gave themselves first to the Lord!  Our steady  relationship with Christ himself is of first importance.

The Bible makes clear that as true Christians, those who are trusting and following Christ, we have been set free from the old life of sin and selfishness and are now joined to Christ to walk in a few life.  The apostle challenges us to be definite and “count it so”. Think this way now!  Then he tells us to “offer yourselves to God, as those who have been brought from death to life...For sin shall not be your master, because you are not under law, but under grace.” (Ro.6:3-4,11,13-14)  

Law speaks of rules and commandments.  These may be good commandments, but we are not able to keep them in our own strength.  Grace speaks of God’s strength, unmerited favor, that is ours through Christ.  As we humbly offer ourselves to Christ, he will work in us that which we cannot do. “For it is God who works in you to will and act according to his good purpose.” (Phil.2:12 NIV)

All kinds of sin need not control us because grace is available to us in Christ.  Again, Paul tells us because of God’s mercy, “offer your bodies as living sacrifices to God.” (Ro.12:1NIV)  All things are possible with God.  You and I will see God lead and accomplish his pleasure in and through us.  We can do as the Macedonian Christians did two thousand years ago. They gave themselves first to the Lord!