Category: Daily Devotionals

Focal Passage:  Romans 8:12-17

Romans 8:17 “…and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him.”

Christians, it has been said, sacrifice their present on the altar of their future.  That’s not common.  The world will always sacrifice its future on the altar of its present.  In other words, the world wants their happiness and riches and inheritance now, so the future isn’t the focus—now is.  However, believers understand that as heirs of the promise of God, we are also aliens in this place.  As such, our present will understandably be riddled with troubles and trials.  We sacrifice this day and the treasures the world offers us on the altar of our futures, which is eternity, knowing that our futures encompass riches that far outweigh anything this world might offer now.  We suffer now with our Savior knowing that one day we will be glorified with Him.  That’s worth any sacrifice made today.

Study/Meditation:  Read 1 Peter 1:3-7.  What does Peter say is the point of trials in this life in relation to our eternal inheritance?  How do these teachings spur you on in this day?

*Father, help me remember my eternity today as I face the troubles that abound in this life.  I love You and I look to You for my future in glory.  Amen.

Focal Passage:  Romans 8:12-17

Romans 8:16 “The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God.”

The process of sanctification in the believer is possible only by the Holy Spirit’s presence.  The goal of pleasing the Father through obedience is possible only by the Holy Spirit.  Even more so, the actual “desire” to be sanctified and please the Father is only possible in the Holy Spirit.  Consequently, our assurance lies in the Spirit’s presence in our lives, thus giving us the tools we need to move toward sanctification.  Truly none of us would center our hearts on the one true living God and His glory were it not for the residence of the Holy Spirit within those very hearts.  His existence, which guides and leads, is the witness we need to give us further assurance that we are in God’s family.  We are His children, and as Paul reinforces in this verse, the Spirit bears witness to this fact.

Study/Meditation:  What else does Paul tell us about the Holy Spirit’s presence in our hearts in 2 Corinthians 1:14 and 5:5?  How does this comfort you in your struggles in the here and now?

*Father, thank You for the Holy Spirit who guides and directs me, but who also serves as the guarantee that You have made me Yours.  Amen.

Focal Passage:  Romans 8:12-17

Romans 8:15 “For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry ‘Abba!  Father!’”

Still in the avenue of assurance, Paul reminds us here that we have been brought into the family of God, and inasmuch as this is true, the fear and guilt and sin that reigned in our lives has been replaced by the hope and future and inheritance of sons and daughters.  Our former selves were dictated by a “spirit of slavery.”  We were in bondage to our sin natures and the death that nature brings.  However, since we are now adopted by God into His family, that spirit has been replaced by the Holy Spirit, or the “Spirit of adoption.”  Now instead of crying in misery and fear, we cry out to our Father in heaven, “Abba!  Father!”  What glorious assurance and contentment has been afforded to us now as fellow heirs to eternity in the Kingdom of God!

Study/Meditation:  Read Ephesians 1:11-14.  What more does Paul teach us in this letter about our inheritance as sons and daughters of God?

*Father, thank You for bringing me into Your family, giving me all of the rights and privileges of being Your child.  I love You.  Amen.

Focal Passage:  Romans 8:12-17

Romans 8:14 “For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God.”

Paul just told us that those who are living “by the Spirit” are putting to death the deeds of the flesh, thus giving us life.  Now he further tells us that this sanctification, or mortification of the flesh, is the proof that we are in God’s family; we belong to Him as His children.  Any of us who are looking for assurance in our salvation need only follow the backward course of Paul’s train of thought:  God’s children are listening to and following the Holy Spirit and this is evidenced in their continual striving towards obedience and godly behavior.  We aren’t expected to be perfect as we are being led; otherwise we would be walking equal to the Spirit.  Instead Paul is sure to say that we are being “led” by the Spirit, which translates that we are looking to Him and following after Him daily.  This is simply sanctification and it is the evidence that we are indeed sons and daughters of the Almighty.  Assurance lies here.

Study/Meditation:  What does it mean that you are a “son” or “daughter” of God?  How should this relationship further increase your desire for holiness?

*Father, thank You for making me Your child.  Help me as I walk daily in that role, striving ever to evidence that station.  Amen.

Focal Passage:  Romans 8:12-17

Romans 8:13 “For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.”

Once again Paul is stressing a basic equation when it comes to being born of the Spirit—living according to the flesh brings death and living according to the Spirit brings life.  But notice that he is also saying that this activity, though fully spiritual, is not a passive activity for the believer.  We are to be actively involved in the process.  We are to “put to death the deeds of the body;” that is, there are actions we must take in this battle.  However, also notice that one little phrase, “by the Spirit.”  It’s not “me against the flesh;” it’s “the Spirit at work in me against the flesh.”  We are fully incapable of even waging this war on our own, much less winning it.  Only by the Spirit can we live according to the Spirit.  It is a beautiful paradox.

Study/Meditation:  How did what Jesus said in Matthew 16:25 reinforce what Paul writes here?

*Father, help me this day as I, by the Spirit, do battle against my flesh.  Thank You for the ultimate victory.  Amen.

Focal Passage:  Romans 8:12-17

Romans 8:12 “So then, brothers, we are debtors, not to the flesh, not live according to the flesh.”

The Bible gives us a myriad of reasons for living in obedience to God.  Often it speaks of doing so out of gratitude, which is entirely correct.  However, in this verse Paul gives us another reason we ought to live a life of obedience and that is obligation.  We are obligated to God because He chose us; He chose to give us the Holy Spirit to guide and direct our lives so that we might become more and more sanctified to Him.  We have no debt or obligation to the flesh.  The flesh has done nothing for us, would do nothing for us but lead us to certain death.  God, however, in His rich love and mercy, snatched us out of the hands of death and gave us life, and so in that we are obligated to that love to obey it.  We cannot repay this debt, but that does not negate our being indebted all the same.

Study/Meditation:  What does it mean to be “indebted” to God while fully knowing that there is no way we can repay that debt?

*Father, thank You for Your love and mercy.  I will seek to live a life obedient to You because You chose to love me.  To You be all glory and majesty.  Amen.