Scripture: Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way, walk in it.” (Isaiah 30:21)
Devotional: You see the unquestionable progress from grace to sin. Thus it goes on, from step to step:
(1) The divine seed of loving, conquering faith remains in the one who is born of God. “He keeps himself” by the grace of God and “cannot commit sin.”
(2) A temptation arises; whether from the world, the flesh, or the devil, it matters not.
(3) The Spirit of God gives him warning that sin is near and bids him more abundantly watch unto prayer.
(4) He gives way, in some degree, to the temptation, which now begins to grow pleasing to him.
(5) The Holy Spirit is grieved; his faith is weakened; and his love of God grows cold.
(6) The Spirit reproves him more sharply, saying, “This is the way; walk in it”.
(7) He turns away from the painful voice of God and listens to the pleasing voice of the tempter.
(8) Evil desire begins and spreads in his soul till faith and love vanish away. He is then capable of committing outward sin, the power of the Lord being departed from him.
It is unquestionably true, that one who is born of God, keeping himself, does not, cannot commit sin. Yet if he does not “keep himself,” he may commit all manner of sin with greediness.
Prayer: Father, so many voices call to your children from all directions. Open the ears of our heart and help us to hear and distinguish your voice above all others. Write your word on our hearts that we might not sin against you. Help us to weigh all voices against your word and heed your warning to turn away. Take not your Holy Spirit from us. We praise you and thank you for leading us in the direction that we should go. All glory be to your Son Jesus Christ, always. Amen.