READING: 2 Corinthians 5-9
What is your motive for living a godly life? Maybe today's reading will help you answer that question.
In warning the Corinthians about idolatry, Paul gave them this command: "Do not be yoked together with unbelievers" (2 Cor 6:14). His rhetorical questions, including "What harmony is there between Christ and Belial [a reference to Satan]?" (2 Cor 6:15), were reminders that righteousness has no place with wickedness, darkness and light do not fellowship together, and the temple of God has no agreement with idolatry. Paul simply expected believers to be different than the world.
Then, he next laid out a further argument aimed at our motives for godliness. First, he reminded the Corinthians that the Almighty God, the Creator of the world, had chosen to call to Himself a people: "I will live with them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be my people" (2 Cor 6:16). God could have chosen to be a distant and disconnected God, but He instead has chosen to walk with His own.
Second, because the God who wants a relationship with us is holy, He rightly demands that we be separate from evil (2 Cor 6:17). He calls us to Himself, provides for us, protects us, and leads us. In fact, He said, "I will be a Father to you, and you will be my sons and daughters" (2 Cor 6:18). He who loves us this much expects us to be pure, turning from wrong because we are His; as Paul put it, "Since we have these promises, dear friends, let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God" (2 Cor 7:1).
A holy God loves us and has made us His children. That's all the motive we should need to live righteously.
- Meditate on the words of 2 Corinthians 6:16-18. Focus on being God's child.
- Consider places in your life where right and wrong are co-mingling. Out of reverence for God, turn from the wrong.
PRAYER: “God, thank You for making me Your child. I turn from everything that displeases You.”
TOMORROW’S READING: 2 Corinthians 10-13