devotional

29APR
2020

Where Is Your Confidence Found? By Chad Westfall

Article by Chad Westfall
Contributing author, Biblecia.com

 

Where Is Your Confidence Found?

Philippians 1:27-28

Over the past few months panic and a pandemic have consumed the media and the culture that we live in. Businesses, schools, medical facilities and even churches are closing their doors to “flatten the curve” of the Coronavirus cases that we are seeing. The amount of people coming together (not literally of course) to try to fight the spread of COVID 19 is an amazing thing, but we must understand that mitigation of the disease should not be our only focus, there is a reason for this disease that we are experiencing. We are told in James that trials are used by God for exposing our sins and sanctifying us. (My paraphrase of James 1:2-4). One way that the COVID-19 trial has been used by God in my life is to expose my fear of the world and of my own mortality. Though my fears for each of these things has been to varying degrees I have to acknowledge that this trial has brought these sinful fears to the surface of my soul, and by the grace of God I am now able to acknowledge they are sin and acknowledge the better way (to fear God) and to act upon these truths. The question that those of us who find our identity in Christ should ask is, how did I get to a place where I fear things and events other than God himself? One reason we see this lack of confidence and misplaced fear is that we are not obedient to what Paul commands of the church in Philippians 1:27-28, “Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel, and not frightened in anything by your opponents. This is a clear sign to them of their destruction, but of your salvation, and that from God.” So if you are fearful of the government, your neighbor, your food/TP shortage, or of contracting COVID- 19 and dying, then I want to encourage you to read these words of Paul and consider your life in the light of these verses. Paul tells us that confidence before the world and even before God is possible. Since it is possible for us to have peace in this pandemic, we ought to take great pains to understand exactly what Paul is telling us in this text. First, Paul tells us that confidence before the world and God comes in “having a life worthy of the gospel of Christ,” A Christian’s life is to be suited to the salvation they claim to have. A tree that produces apples is worthy to be called an apple tree because its fruit is in accordance or suitable with its namesake. If you are calling yourself a Christian your life should exemplify the characteristics of Christ, otherwise you are not worthy of the name. Paul tells us that the worthy people are those who are “standing firm in one Spirit ” which means that you are in line with orthodox Christianity, as the verse continues, “with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel” There is one gospel of Christ and if you are to live as Jesus and take his name upon yourself you must believe him as he is found in his word. This means that a Mormon or a Catholic or any other Christian cult cannot walk worthy of the gospel because they have a different spirit or different unifying beliefs that are contrary to the word of God. 1 John 4:3. If you are reading this and are currently in a false church, your only hope for confidence in the world and before God is to turn from the false gospel and embrace Christ as he is presented in his word.  Paul emphasizes that there is a striving in this faith of the gospel as well, if you believed the gospel at one point but do not anymore, you have no reason for confidence in the world or before God. As the Apostle John says in his first epistle, if you walked away from Christ, you never had salvation. 1 John 2:19.

So, as you live in a culture of panic and pandemic ask yourself, what am I afraid of? How has God graciously come to me in this trial to expose sinful attitudes and desires? Am I walking in a way that shows that the salvation that I profess is authentically from the Father in the work of Jesus Christ applied to me by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit? Or am I fearful of the world, and loss and death because I am walking contrary to my profession of faith? Where is your confidence found today?

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Chad Westfall is: by the grace of God, a follower of Christ, a husband to his best friend and the father of 6 beautiful children.

4 responses to “Where Is Your Confidence Found? By Chad Westfall”

  1. Anonymous says:

    Well said, sir. I too have been struggling with this.

  2. Biblecia.com says:

    Thanks for writing in and letting us know! We pray that this article is a blessing to you today as you consider God’s word applied afresh. God bless!

  3. D Solomon Raju says:

    wow, what a wonderfull words you are speaking. thank you for this content.

  4. Biblecia says:

    Thank you for writing in and letting us know! Your thoughts are always welcome. God bless!

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