Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Daily Devo - Wednesday, 08/12/2009

"By faith Abel offered to God a more acceptable sacrifice than Cain, through which he was commended as righteous, God commending him by accepting his gifts. And through his faith, though he died, he still speak" (Hebrews 11:4, ESV)

In the Gospels Jesus talks about the 'wheat and tares'. This is an metaphor for a very unfortunate reality that confronts all of us. In this life the people who publicly align themselves with God are comprised of true and false believers. In a technical sense a "Christian" is someone who has true belief in Jesus Christ--but functionally many people claim this word for themselves even though they have never truly given their hearts to Jesus. Take Cain and Abel for example. Though these two brothers both professed faith in Christ, only one actually gave his heart to Jesus. Both were raised in the same family, heard the same devotions, attended the same worship services, and shared the same experiences. Yet their reaction to those experiences and truths was vastly different. In their adult life both boys continued to offer worship to God, but only one of them offered his heart.

Matthew Henry, commenting on this verse, once said “There is always a difference between those who worship the true God; some will compass him about with lies, others will be faithful with the saints; some, like the Pharisee, will lean to their own righteousness; others, like the publican, will confess their sin, and cast themselves upon the mercy of God in Christ.”
Abel was the very first martyr in the Bible. Giving God his heart earned him Cain's bitterness and rage--but it also earned him eternal life with God. One was wheat, the other a tare. Which are you?

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