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The Lord impoverishes and makes wealthy; he humbles and he exalts. He lifts the weak from the dust; he raises the poor from the ash heap to seat them with princes and to bestow on them an honored position. The foundations of the earth belong to the Lord, and he has placed the world on them.
Remember today that it is the Lord who is in control. When poverty strikes, it is often hard work to remember that poverty could not strike without God allowing it to strike. Seek God in every situation in your life: He knows the purpose and plan He has for you. Every detail of what is happening in your life today is not a secret from He who created the foundations of the earth. He is near to help you through and meet your needs. Humble yourself and seek the Lord God with everything, and He will exalt you.
Hannah prayed,“My heart rejoices in the Lord; my horn is exalted high because of the Lord. I loudly denounce my enemies, for I am happy that you delivered me. No one is holy like the Lord! There is no one other than you! There is no rock like our God!
Today, delight in the Lord and rejoice! Remember what He has done for you! In this prayer, Hannah is responding to the power of God working in her life to give her a son, Samuel. It is right to recognize what God does for you as you live this life. Take time out on occassion and reflect on how God has been good. If there are frustrations or disappointments, deep sadness or loss, please know that God wants to hear those things too. He truly IS our Rock, our Strong Tower, and He will be there for you.
Therefore, holy brothers and sisters, partners in a heavenly calling, take note of Jesus, the apostle and high priest whom we confess, who is faithful to the one who appointed him, as Moses was also in God’s house. For he has come to deserve greater glory than Moses, just as the builder of a house deserves greater honor than the house itself! For every house is built by someone, but the builder of all things is God.
Remember today that Jesus Christ was faithful to God the Father in all that He accomplished - even death on the cross. God's design for us is to be in relationship with Him and, through the life, death, and resurrection of Christ, He has built the bridge necessary for us to be in that relationship with Him. Our salvation has been made possible by God Himself. The Son does what He sees the Father doing. (John 5:19 paraphrased)
Now to the one who works, his pay is not credited due to grace but due to obligation. But to the one who does not work, but believes in the one who declares the ungodly righteous, his faith is credited as righteousness. So even David himself speaks regarding the blessedness of the man to whom God credits righteousness apart from works: “Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven, and whose sins are covered; blessed is the one against whom the Lord will never count sin.”
There is not one of us who has earned God's forgiveness by our actions (or works). We are forgiven because of the gift of Jesus Christ. It is only because of His perfect work (His perfect life) given up as payment for our sins that we have been saved. Our faith that Jesus has done this is what is credited to us as righteousness, just as Abraham's faith in God was credited to him as righteousness. Trust in Jesus! He is the only one qualified to justify us before God.
What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but does not have works? Can this kind of faith save him? If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacks daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, keep warm and eat well,” but you do not give them what the body needs, what good is it? So also faith, if it does not have works, is dead being by itself. But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith without works and I will show you faith by my works. You believe that God is one; well and good. Even the demons believe that—and tremble with fear.
Yesterday in Galatians 3, we saw Paul making a point to the Galatian church to not add anything to the gospel message - specifically, works of the law. Today, James is making a point about good deeds done through a saving faith in Jesus Christ. The point is basically this: faith that is not accompanied by good deeds is a dead faith. While we are not saved by works, the grace that we are saved by comes with a faith that pronounces the work of the Holy Spirit in us...resulting in good deeds that bear fruit.