• The Value of Circumcision Devotional

    Romans 2:25

    Most of us are unlikely to think that we will automatically make it to heaven if we have been circumcised. However, professing Christians are prone to think they are right before God because they go to church, and they might believe that their children are guaranteed a place in heaven as long as they are raised in a Christian home. We cannot trust in any of these things. None of us is saved unless personal trust in Christ resides in our hearts. View Resource

  • The Jews’ Failure to Keep the Law Devotional

    Romans 2:21b–23

    John Calvin comments on today’s passage, “We are here warned, first, not to flatter ourselves and to despise others, when we have performed only some portions of the law—and, secondly, not to glory in having outward idolatry removed, while we care not to drive away and to eradicate the impiety that lieth hid in our hearts.” Our goal should always be to root out sin in our own lives first before we point it out in others and in the world. View Resource

  • Believing Versus Doing Devotional

    Galatians 3:10–14

    We can say with certainty that the one temptation that all people have in common is the temptation to believe we can make ourselves right with God, that our efforts, even when done with His help, are good enough to meet His standards. But the Lord does not ask us to be good enough; rather, we are to be perfect (Matt. 5:48). That means that only Christ’s perfect righteousness can suffice to put us in a right relationship with the Father. We must trust in Him and in Him alone. View Resource

  • The Threat of Legalism Devotional

    Philippians 3:2-3

    We are circumcised in the heart when we are baptized into Christ — not in the mere participation in the washing with water but at the moment the reality to which the sacrament points is ours, namely, the moment we trust in Jesus alone for salvation. There is nothing we can add or need to add to our faith to make us acceptable to God. We must simply turn from sin and rest in Christ as our only hope in life and in death. View Resource

  • The Legalist Distortion Devotional

    Romans 14

    As a modern example of legalism, some Christians have said that it is wrong for believers to consume alcohol. However, while such rules may be motivated by a noble concern that people avoid the sin of drunkenness, Scripture nowhere condemns sensible drinking of alcohol, and, in fact, it commends such consumption (Ps. 104:14–15). We are free to decide ourselves not to drink, but to impose a rule like this on others is legalism. View Resource

  • Human Precepts and Teachings Devotional

    Colossians 2:21-22

    Scripture is actually a repetitive book, and we have seen a glimpse of this in Colossians 2 as Paul reminds us over and over that our obedience to law can do nothing to free us from evil. The Bible needs to be this repetitive because we are thick-headed and prone to try to make ourselves righteous by our own efforts. Jesus alone can make us righteous, and continual turning to Him is the only way to ensure that Satan has no undue influence on us. View Resource

  • Dead to the World or Alive? Devotional

    Colossians 2:20

    Out of His great love for us, God warns His people against legalism and false religious practices because hoping in rules, astrology, and other false spiritualities only gives Satan and the flesh more influence over us. But when we pursue the pure, undefiled religion revealed in Scripture — the gospel of Christ alone — and treat others in love, refusing to judge them by standards we have created, we render the evil forces in the world powerless. View Resource

  • God-Given Growth Devotional

    Colossians 2:19

    There is a sinful tendency in all of us to cut ourselves off from Christ, the Head of the body of Christ and only source of life-sustaining nourishment. It may not display itself overtly in false worship as it did with the Colossian heretics, but perhaps through legalism or a sectarianism that is ever on the lookout for the perfect church. May we never be guilty of cutting ourselves off from Christ. View Resource

  • God’s Fuller Revelation Devotional

    Psalm 68:1–18

    Legalism is the inevitable result when we fail to remember that the cross was the high point of redemptive history, not the covenant ratified at Sinai. As we meditate on the cross, we recall the glory seen in His death and the grace that was extended to us. Consequently, we are reminded of our need to extend grace to others and endeavor not to bind the conscience where God has left it free. Let us show kindness as indiscriminately as God does. View Resource

  • Walking by the Spirit Devotional

    Galatians 5:16–17

    John Calvin comments, “If we would obey the Spirit, we must labor, and fight, and apply our utmost energy; and we must begin with self-denial.” Walking by the Holy Spirit is the denial of the self and one’s fleshly desires and turning to Christ to follow His example, asking the Spirit to enable us to do so. Consider today where you might be following the desires of the flesh and not the way of the Spirit. Repent and ask the Spirit to help you follow Jesus. View Resource

  • The Weak Conscience Devotional

    1 Corinthians 8

    Has anyone ever called you judgmental? Do you consider something to be sinful that God has not? Do you try to be another’s conscience? Are you too loose with God’s Word? Do you feel uncomfortable around more conscientious Christians? If so, do you abuse Christian liberty and pamper sinful habits? View Resource

  • The Weak and the Strong Devotional

    Romans 14:1–6

    Pressuring a weak believer to do something he perceives as wrong is the wrong way to help the weak become stronger. The right way is to teach the principles of biblical religion, and address the specific issues in an atmosphere of teaching. In the light of this, how would you deal with someone who thinks it is wrong to drink wine? View Resource