Who is Worthy?

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Before we jump into the Word together, I want to touch on something that I having been wanting to share. 

WordforWorship.com is designed to be a platform where you can be encouraged to love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength. Each blog post is (hopefully) a snippet of the beauty that is ours in Jesus and in His Word. I want to encourage you, let this blog be a drink of cool water on your journey with Jesus; nothing more. I say all of this to express this one thing: I fear that you will be satisfied with a quick devotional thought, that you will be satisfied with a few minutes of reflection. I fear that this blog will become a type of barrier between you and Jesus, rather than a morsel that would cause you to crave the Living Bread. 

Sound a bit silly? Well if you are like me, you know how easy it is for “good things” to become the objects of our love and devotion. Jesus understood this and spoke plainly about the dangers of a shallow or superficial love for God. Look at what He says:

 “He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me; and he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me.”

Matthew 10:37-38

I encourage you, reread that last statement slowly…Can you feel the weight of Jesus’ words? Let’s take a deeper look at some of this.

Worthy

The one who loves father or mother more than Jesus is not worthy of Jesus. Why does Jesus say this? To love anything or anyone more than Jesus is to remove Jesus from the throne of our hearts. In our longing after other things, we dethrone Christ from His rightful position as the Lover and Lord of our lives; we have made His dwelling place “unworthy” or “unfit” for Him. To better understand this, let’s take a look at what “worthy” actually means in the Greek. 

The word worthy (axios) literally means “to be of weight.” In the first century, money changers would weigh out coins of silver or gold. Rather than look at the amount of coins on the scale, the money changers would consider the weight of the coins. Therefore, when they would exchange money, they would weigh coins against each other to make sure the “worth” of each pile of coins was the same. If the scales balanced, the transaction would be considered “of weight”; worthy.

The one who loves father, mother, son, or daughter more than Jesus does not see the value of the offering Jesus is making; Himself. Notice what he says, “is not worthy of Me.” He did not say, worthy of My favor or worthy of my blessing, He specifically says “of Me.” You see, we are not being offered something outside of Jesus. God is giving us Himself! Only when we give ourselves entirely to Him do we become vessels “worthy” of the presence of God. A life for a life; axios.

When we offer our unhindered, undivided, and unadulterated love to Jesus, we are revealing that we view Him as supremely worthy. And this is all He asks, that we see and know Him for who He is, the righteous and worthy Son of God. When we see Jesus for who He is and respond in faith, the dwelling place of our hearts become worthy of the Son of God.

Response

Would you consider His offering? In all of His fullness, Jesus desires to dwell within you. He longs to birth His desires in You, to reign as the Lord of your life and to accomplish His perfect will through you. Would you respond to His call and offer up the entirety of your life, your love, your affection to Him? He is worthy!

Lord Jesus, You are supremely worthy of our love and affection. Oh Lord, rid us of every false love, every unworthy idol. Set Yourself as the Lord in our hearts and finish this good work that You have begun in us. We trust that You will do this. We love You and pray this in Your name.

In Jesus,

TJMcPherson

Praying with Joy

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For the past couple of months, I have been memorizing Paul’s letter to the Philippians. Now, I admit, the memorization process has been rather slow…however it has been so rewarding! One passage that has really impressed me is Paul’s prayer for the Philippians.

In his opening statement to the Philippians, the Apostle Paul makes this statement:

“I thank my God in all my remembrance of you, always in every prayer of mine for you all, making my prayer with joy…

Let’s hone in on what Paul is saying here. The word “making” is the greek word “poieo.” Though seemingly insignificant, this little word is the key to understanding what Paul is trying to convey to the Philippian church.

Poieo” is commonly translated into the English words, make, do, work, produce…etc. It carries the idea of someone or something producing something from their inner being. A great example of this is an apple tree. When an apple tree “produces” or “poieo’s” an apple, we are not alarmed or impressed in any way because apple trees ALWAYS produce apples. However, if an apple tree started bearing oranges, we would certainly take notice. In fact, we would begin to question whether or not the said “apple tree” was really an apple tree. The hanging oranges would testify against the “apple tree” and prove that the “apple tree” is actually an ORANGE TREE…the fruit of the tree must correlate with the innate nature of the tree.

The same can be said for us. Jesus tells us that from the abundance of our hearts we speak and act and therefore display the substance of our inner lives (Matt. 12:33-37.) Whether we like it or not, the true substance of our hearts will be displayed through our words and actions.

This is true for Paul. He tells the Philippians that he “makes his prayer with joy” when he prays for them. Knowing what we know of the word “poieo,” we can see that Paul is actually overflowing with joy when he prays for the Philippians. He is not working up joy or following a 5-step process to attain joy. He is simply revealing the true substance of his heart; joy.

Is this not the fruit of the Spirit of Jesus dwelling in Paul? (read Galatians 5:16-24) Oh, what freedom is his! Though he formally walked in the rigorous ways of devout Judaism, Paul now walks in the freedom of the Spirit of God. Being full of Jesus, Paul now overflows with the inner substance of Christ. 

What would it look like if you were so intimate and in-step with Jesus, that the fruit of your life was the fruit of the life of Christ? Would your prayer life reflect that of the Apostle Paul’s? Full of joy and abounding with love for your brothers and sisters, would your prayer life move to a whole new level?

Let’s drop every weight and take on His yoke, learn from Him, and be trees that bear His fruit. It will be our greatest joy.

Yours in Jesus,

TJMcPherson