Only fear the Lord and serve Him in truth with all your heart; for consider what great things He has done for you.
1 Samuel 12:24
“…for consider what great things He has done for you.”
“For you.” Let’s think about that for a minute. “For you.” Let’s stop and do an assessment of all that God has done, is doing, and will continue to do…for you.
If you’re reading this in Calhoun, Georgia, then you know we’ve been getting some rain lately, and the farmers around us are probably glad about that. That rain keeps their crops and the rest of the plant life around us alive. Those crops feed us, and much of the plants kept alive by that rain feed the animals who in turn feed us too. Yet it is God who is ultimately the Source for the rain and all of our food and clothing, and the Bible says over and over again that He does all of this…for you (Genesis 9:3; Joel 2:23; Acts 14:17; Matthew 6:25-34).
Again, if you’re reading this in Calhoun, Georgia, then you’re also reading it in the United States of America, the most powerful and prosperous nation in history. I’m reminded of when tiny, little Israel was a superpower back in Old Testament times. It was God who gave them their power and might; it was God who kept their mightier foes from destroying them and gave them the strength to conquer their enemies (Deuteronomy 1:30; 3:22; Joshua 23:10). Every nation has existed and possesses whatever strength it has due to God (Acts 17:26; Job 12:23). The United States is no different. Whatever prosperity or freedom you have as an American, it is because God has given it…to you.
God’s chosen people in the Old Testament was the physical nation of Israel, but God’s chosen people in the New Testament is spiritual Israel…His Son’s church (Romans 2:28-29; Galatians 6:16). The church of Jesus Christ is made up of those who have been saved by the gospel of God after having believed it and obeyed it by penitently being dipped in water in order to be born again and forgiven (Romans 1:16; 2 Thessalonians 1:7-9; Mark 16:15-16; Acts 2:38; John 3:3-5). That’s how you become a Christian, and as long as you as a Christian use the power of the gospel you can be confident that God stand by your side fighting…for you (Ephesians 6:10-18; Romans 8:31).
Here’s how much God is willing to go to the mat for you. He sent His only begotten Son to die for you. Think of Jesus having the flesh whipped off of His back, the nails piercing His hands and feet, the clothes stripped off His body as they lifted His bleeding, naked form up into the air, hanging on that cross for all to see. All of that was for you. Jesus said it Himself when He instituted the communion Supper which memorializes His sacrifice: “This is my body which is given for you…This cup is the new testament in my blood, which is shed for you” (Luke 22:19-20). Peter said that “you were not redeemed with perishable things like silver or gold from your futile way of life inherited from your forefathers, but with precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, the blood of Christ. For He was foreknown before the foundation of the world, but has appeared in these last times…for the sake of you” (1 Peter 1:18-20).
Christ died for you, and He did it so you could have the hope of an eternal peace in heaven. Peter wrote of that glory waiting for you, calling it “an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven…for you” (1 Peter 1:4).
Each day all of us are faced with a choice. Do we do what is right and obey God, or do we follow Satan? Next time you are faced with that choice, think of all God does for you. As Scripture says, “Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time, casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares…for you” (1 Peter 5:6-7).