(Edward Griffin, 1770-1837)
“You do not belong to yourself–for God bought you with a high price!” 1 Corinthians 6:19-20
All that you are and have–are His. You owe Him your whole selves!
The Lord Jesus Christ, who created you and redeemed you from eternal damnation–is your Proprietor, Master, and King.
Whom else then should you serve?
To whom else should you devote your lives?
Whose interest should you rather seek?
“For not one of us lives for himself, and not one dies for himself. For if we live–we live for the Lord; or if we die–we die for the Lord. Therefore whether we live or die–we are the Lord’s.” Romans 14:7-8
Our religion is exactly in proportion as we cease to live for ourselves–and live for God alone. We have just as much religion–as we have of self-denial. The only evidence of attachment to Him on which we can rely–is that we make it our design and care to promote His glory and the accomplishment of His benevolent purposes, not now and then, but in the general tenor of our lives.
To live for God, is to regard His will as the rule and ground of our conduct, and His glory as our supreme object. Not merely one day in a week–but in our general course to act from a reference to His authority.
To live for God, is to choose our calling, to pursue our business, to frame our habits, to regulate our actions from hour to hour–from a regard to His will and honor.
To live for God, is to feel and act as those who are not at liberty to live to themselves, but have their work daily assigned them by a heavenly Master.
To live for God, is to live under a sense that we are not our own–not our own masters, not our own proprietors, not at our own disposal.
To live for God, is to live as though our time, talents, influence, property, and all that we are and have–are God’s.
To live for God, is to hold everything in readiness to use for Him, or resign all things to Him as He shall direct.
To live for God, is to to be submissive under afflictions, and willing to be at His disposal in all our trials.
To live for God, is to to be ready to deny ourselves for Him in every way which His Word or Providence may point out.
To live for God, is to desire life chiefly that we may serve Him.
To live for God, is to make Him the center in which all the lines of our life shall meet.
To live for God, is to make it the business of our lives to please Him and not ourselves.
The very core of all true religion, is not to live for ourselves–but for God; not to consider ourselves our own–but the property and the servants of the Lord Jesus Christ; not to feel as though we are set up in the world to work for ourselves, to spend the most of our time in pursuing what is termed our innocent gratifications–but to hold our time, powers, influence, and property as talents entrusted to us to be used for Christ–keeping our eye on His Word to learn His will, and aiming habitually to please and honor Him.
This, and nothing but this, is true Christianity!Whatever our creed is–if this is not our character–then all our religion is vain!
“So we make it our goal to please Him–whether we are at home in the body or away from it!” 2 Corinthians 5:9