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"And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by Him." Colossians 3:17

The first man and woman were created in the image of God (Gen. 1:26-27) -- they were reflections of God's righteousness and glory (2 Cor. 3:18). Though it's hard for us to grasp and understand, their lives and all their works were for the glory of God their Maker.

The fall into sin recorded in Genesis 3 changed all that. Instead of seeking to glorify God in all their words and deeds, people seek their own glory and praise. Words are spoken for our own ends. Deeds are done for our own honor and name.

Jesus, God's own dear Son, came into this world, living humbly among us as a true man, that He might glorify His Father in heaven and redeem fallen mankind by paying the price for our sins. He fulfilled all righteousness for us by His holy thoughts, words and deeds; and He went to the cross for us, paid the just penalty for all our sins and rose again in victory on the third day. He has been glorified and is ascended into heaven to the right hand of God the Father and rules over all things.

Through Spirit-wrought faith in Christ Jesus, we receive the forgiveness and life Jesus won for us when He suffered and died upon the cross. We are raised from spiritual darkness and death and given new life in fellowship with God, our Maker. Thus, as children of God through faith in Christ Jesus, we seek to honor and glorify our Maker and Redeemer in all we say and do. Our words are spoken to bring glory to our Savior by reflecting His words and teaching. Our deeds are done to the praise of Christ Jesus, again, as reflections of His works and deeds.

Since we have been redeemed from eternal punishment and hell by the sacrifice of Jesus in our place, we seek to live our lives in this world to glorify Him and bring Him praise. We seek to learn more and more of Jesus by continuing in His Word that we might reflect His image and glory in this dark and dying world and that others, too, might come to know Him and trust in Him for the forgiveness of sins and for life everlasting!

And, yes, as we seek to glorify our Lord Jesus in all we say and do, we also remember and give thanks to God our Father for so loving the world that He gave His only-begotten Son to be the full payment for our sins -- and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world (cf. 1 John 2:1-2). We thank God for continuing to forgive our shortcomings and failures for the sake of the shed blood of His dear Son. We thank God for His Spirit, who brought us to faith in Jesus, raised us up to life in Him, and continues to keep us in the true faith until we are finally taken to be with our Savior in the mansions of heaven.

We give thanks to God the Father for the sake of Messiah Jesus, our Lord and Savior; for it is through Him that we have access to the Father and are privileged to be called His children.

We thank You, dear Father in heaven, for so loving the world that You gave Your only-begotten Son to die for us. We thank You for bringing us to know and trust in Jesus that we might receive the forgiveness and life won for us by Him. By Your Spirit, grant that all we do and say be for the glory of Jesus our Savior and reflect Your image and glory. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.

[Devotion by Randy Moll. Scripture quotations are from the King James Version of the Bible.]

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