PC-USA 2018-08-14 - Pleasing God

Part 1 ~ Pleasing God in Our Hearts

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But achieving the goal of pleasing God can and should be done anywhere, and actually starts right where we are at this moment - in our hearts. The starting line, of course, is faith in God.

Heb 11:6 (AMP) But without faith, it is impossible to [walk with God and] please Him, for whoever comes [near] to God must [necessarily] believe that God exists, and that He rewards those who [earnestly and diligently] seek Him.

Without that faith, everything that we do is spiritually meaningless.

Isaiah 64:6 (AMP) For we all have become like one who is [ceremonially] unclean [like a leper], And all our deeds of righteousness are like filthy rags; We all wither and decay like a leaf, And our wickedness [our sin, our injustice, our wrongdoing], like the wind, takes us away [carrying us far from God’s favor, toward destruction].

Does that mean that faith is always steady? Of course not. We are human, and the vagaries of life will affect our faith, no matter how hard we try. But when that happens, we can ask God to increase our faith, like the father of the sick child, as told in Mark 9:23-25. Then until our faith regrows, we can hang onto the faith of family members and friends who are stronger in the faith. There is a reason that God puts us in spiritual families, and wants us to meet with our church families regularly (See Hebrews 10:25).

In addition, our daily prayers must be sincere, and when we turn from our sins, it must not be like I have seen with too many criminals, who pretend to be repentant, in order to obtain a lighter sentence, then prove themselves liars by breaking promises they signed off on - not even making an effort to stay out of trouble. Of course, judges often see through the motives, just as God sees through ours.

Our hearts must be sincere when we communicate with God. Just as with weak faith, if we don’t FEEL truly sorry, then we can ask God for help with that, as well.

Psalm 51:16-17 (AMP) For You do not delight in sacrifice, or else I would give it;
You are not pleased with burnt offering.
My [only] sacrifice [acceptable] to God is a broken spirit;
A broken and contrite heart [broken with sorrow for sin, thoroughly penitent],
such, O God, You will not despise.

Series to be continued.

[email jan] Janice P. Moser

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All verses are from the New American Standard Version (NASB) unless otherwise noted.


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