Dr. Walter Olsen
In the Christian life, which comes first, inward purity or outward conformity to certain expectations? For many, it is expected that if we conform outwardly, then we will be right inwardly. However, the opposite is true.
The inward change must come before there can really be an outward expression of that which is pleasing to God. Jesus made this clear, when, in speaking to the Pharisees, he said, “Blind Pharisee, first cleanse the inside of the cup and dish, that the outside of them may be clean also” (Matt. 23:26). Many try to make their lives acceptable to God by their good works or conformity to certain expectations, but that is not God’s way, nor is it acceptable to Him. God Himself provided the way we can be acceptable to Him and that is by the way of His death on the cross. He died to forgive us of our sins and it is only by coming to Him in faith that we may be cleansed of our sins and begin to live a life that is pleasing to Him. It is only then that we can know something of the blessing of being forgiven of our sins and live for Him in the way that He chooses!
First Baptist Church of Woodville
Dennis Tapp, Pastor 715-698-2624