On The Christian Life -Saint Paul, Jonathan Edwards and the Daily Devotion

This morning I am re-publishing another edition of the Daily Devotion by Emily Hylden and the Living Chruch Foundation because I feel I have been “called” to do so.  I read this Devotion early this morning  and then  attended Morning Prayer and a new mentor, Ray, also an ordained person, handed me a book called Edwards and the Christian Life which details the disciplined Christian life discussed in the Devotion.  To one who tends to see things where nothing is visible I felt this was a “nudge” saying that this Devotion and the underlying lesson from Ephesians has an important messsage that needs to be spread abroad to as many as possible.

Daily Devotional is a ministry of the Living Church Foundation.
Image licensed via Creative Commons.
Fr. Lawrence Lew, OP/Flickr
Paul and Holiness
Daily Devotional • May 12
By the Rev. Emily R. Hylden

Last week, I heard a pastor comment offhand that she didn’t pay much attention to Paul’s letters anymore, not only because he was misogynist, but because he didn’t understand Christian life the way that she does.

The Book of Ephesians is scorned among many mainline Protestants, to the great peril of spiritual growth. (I would argue that the fruits of ignoring a disciplined Christian life have already begun to ripen and drop to our society.)

The Christian life is not easy, but it is simple. The passage from Ephesians today — whoever wrote it, it is part of the Christian canon and the inspired Word of God — makes very clear exactly how we ought to behave (regardless of what we feel) toward others in order to be faithful and to develop spiritual maturity. Be angry, experience and understand this common emotion, surely, but do not let it tempt you into sin; have courage to speak the truth to your coworkers, your family members, your friends; but do so in love, not for the sake of tearing down, but for the sake of their own holiness, and for yours as well.

Ephesians 4:17-32

Now this I affirm and insist on in the Lord: you must no longer live as the Gentiles live, in the futility of their minds. 18They are darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God because of their ignorance and hardness of heart.19They have lost all sensitivity and have abandoned themselves to licentiousness, greedy to practice every kind of impurity. 20That is not the way you learned Christ!21For surely you have heard about him and were taught in him, as truth is in Jesus.22You were taught to put away your former way of life, your old self, corrupt and deluded by its lusts, 23and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, 24and to clothe yourselves with the new self, created according to the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness. 25So then, putting away falsehood, let all of us speak the truth to our neighbors, for we are members of one another. 26Be angry but do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, 27and do not make room for the devil.28Thieves must give up stealing; rather let them labor and work honestly with their own hands, so as to have something to share with the needy. 29Let no evil talk come out of your mouths, but only what is useful for building up, as there is need, so that your words may give grace to those who hear. 30And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with which you were marked with a seal for the day of redemption. 31Put away from you all bitterness and wrath and anger and wrangling and slander, together with all malice, 32and be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ has forgiven you.

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