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Devotional - week of September 25, 2011


DO THE FIRST WORKS

 

Repent and do the first works. Revelation 2:5

 

This is a command of Jesus to the church in Ephesus. In that same message, Jesus tells the church at Ephesus that they have lost their first love and are in danger of Jesus forsaking the church.

 

.The first works of the Ephesians were works of their first love. Following the salvation experience, God gives new believers a sovereign period of grace in which they are filled with love because they are filled with the Holy Spirit.

 

Interpreting the experience in Ephesus in light of other Scriptures in the New Testament, we know that in time the sovereign experience came to an end and the Ephesian believers began serving God in the flesh. All believers who begin to serve God in the flesh lose that first love. More than one child of God has said, “I would give anything if I could have the love in my heart for others that I had following my conversion experience.”

 

In John 13:34 Jesus says, “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another.” Then in John 15:12, Jesus says, “This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. In Romans 13:8 Paul writes, “Owe no one anything except to love one another, for he who loves another has fulfilled the law.”

 

It is sad when we see a professing Christian who seems to be filled with bitterness rather than love; that seems to be filled with a spirit of condemnation rather than compassion.

 

When a conscientious believer who has lost that first love is confronted with the statements of Jesus about His commandment of love, he grieves. In his grief, he may attempt to work up a spirit of love in his heart. In time he knows that this approach to solving his problem will not work.

 

The answer is in receiving the filling of the Holy Spirit by living out our oneness with Christ.