The Opportunity to Repent
Stewards are constantly faced with temptation. The nature of our temptation may be different from Jezebel, but temptation is just as real. We who know God also know that we are known by God. God searches our hearts and minds and knows our works. Others may indeed see only works that we do, but God knows also the motives of our hearts and minds.
The challenge of God’s steward is to conquer temptations and keep God’s works until the end. There are always alternatives to lure us away from what God would have us do. Some follow the call to stray “just this time” or “until I get caught up” in using the money entrusted to them. Others try to play both sides, perhaps by standing in the temple praying loud and long, while the heart is checked at the door. Those who lie to God have much bigger problems than the potential one with the IRS.
God provides everyone with the opportunity to repent. Jezebel was given time to repent, but she refused. She saw herself as leader of the church, a teacher who enjoyed power over the community. She stood for the old ways, which some called “the deep things of Satan,” rather than new life in Christ and power from God. No one stands beyond God’s reach and power. God will forgive those who repent and follow “the morning star.” If you or anyone, who has an ear, listen to what the Spirit says to the churches.
—Dr. Robert Craig
- What are some of the temptations people face today in the use of time, talent, and money?
- Teaching and learning are important parts of the scripture lesson. As good stewards, what is our responsibility in this aspect of the church?
- Do you consider the items listed in Revelation 2:19 as signs of a good steward? Why or why not?
- Where can a steward find strength to conquer false teaching?
How Do I Act?
- Reflect on some ways in which we as stewards can live by “patient endurance” rather than impulse buying encouraged by merchants and advertising.
- Pray that your stewardship as a church may be that of good works, love, faith, and service. Begin to be an example of that stewardship.
- Study the ways to assure that the church can hold to sound teachings. Should we beware of those who use the church for their political ideas? Or those who ask you to give to keep them on TV?
- One point of the lesson may be What have you done lately? “…that your latter works exceed the first.” Consider specific things you can do now since you have grown from the time you became a member of the church. Covenant with God to do these works. Balance your “being” with “doing.” When your faith is nurtured, your works will be blessed.