Tonight I will present to you some qualities of “Devout Christians.” The apostle Paul wrote to a group of devout Christians at the church meeting in Colosse and I would like to read what he has written to them in Colossians chapter 1 verses 1 through 11.
1 Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will
of God, and Timotheus our brother,
2 To the saints and faithful brethren in Christ which are at Colosse: Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
3 We give thanks to God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, praying always for you,
4 Since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus, and of the love which ye have to all the saints,
5 For the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, whereof ye heard before in the word of the truth of the Gospel;
6 Which is come unto you as it is in all the world; and bringeth forth fruit, as it doth also in you, since the day ye heard of it, and knew the grace of God in truth;
7 As ye also learned of Epaphras our dear fellow servant, who is for you a faithful minister of Christ;
8 Who also declared unto us your love in the Spirit.
9 For this Cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding;
10 That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God;
11 Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness;
Today in our society we are encouraged to be easy going, to be charitable toward every action of other people, to not make any waves, to be compromising, to never be abrasive, and so on. We do not agree with this concept for the true Christian as a matter of living life FOR GOD. I do not agree with a concept of so called “truth” that would hinder us in our proclamation of the gospel to everyone, anywhere, or at anytime. It is my honest conviction that God would have all HIS children to be “DEVOUT” in all interaction with everyone they meet regarding the actual “truth” that emanates from God’s Written Word, the Bible. So now let me present some of those qualities of “Devout Christians.”
1) Are a people of prayer
The apostle Paul in his first letter to the Thessalonians said in chapter 5 verses 16 and 17 “(16) Rejoice evermore. (17) Pray without ceasing.” Proverbs 15 verse 8 says “The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the LORD: but the prayer of the upright is his delight.” And later in verse 29 “The LORD is far from the wicked: but he heareth the prayer of the righteous.” In Luke Chapter 6 verse 12 it says about Jesus “And it came to pass in those days, that he went out into a mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God.” And in Acts Chapter 6 and verse 4 the Apostles stated “But we will give ourselves continually to prayer.” So if Jesus and the Apostles prayed without ceasing I submit that it is also profitable for Christians to continue in prayer especially when God is ready to listen to them and delights in hearing from them.
2) Are good Bible Students
Paul writes in his second epistle to Timothy in Chapter 2 verse 15 “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” The Psalmist wrote in Psalms 1 and verse 2 “But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.” Psalms 119 verse 105 says “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.” Therefore by studying God’s Word, the Word of Truth and by meditating on his laws day and night we will have a light guiding us toward the path that he has chosen.
3) Live as new creatures in the world
The second epistle of Paul to the Corinthians states in chapter 5 verse 15 “Therefore if any man be in Christ he is a new creature; old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” Galatians chapter 6 and verse 15 says “For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing nor uncircumcision, but a new creature.” And Colossians chapter 3 and verses 9-10 says, “(9) Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds; (10) And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him:”
4) Are devoted personal workers
In James chapter 5 verses 19-20 we read “(19)Brethren, if any of you do err from the truth, and one convert him; (20) Let him know, that he which converteth the sinner from the error of his way shall save a soul from death, and shall hide a multitude of sins.” In Romans chapter 15 verse 14 says “And I myself also am persuaded of you, my brethren, that ye also are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge, able also to admonish one another.” But being devoted personal workers does not limit us to helping fellow Christians who have erred see the error of their ways, First Thessalonians chapter 5 and verse 11 says “Wherefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do.” And Romans chapter 14 verse 19 says “Let us therefore follow after the things which make for peace, and things werewith one may edify another.” So when we encourage and edify fellow Christians to do good works, I submit we are also more importantly edifying for Christ and the Father who sent him.
5) Are faithful in attendance
Hebrews chapter 10 verses 24-25 says “ (24) And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works: (25) Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is, but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.” And Acts chapter 11 verses 25-26 says “ (25) Then departed Barnabas to Tarsus, for to seek Saul: (26) And when he had found him, he brought him unto Antioch. And it came to pass, that a whole year they assembled themselves with the church, and taught much people. And the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch.” Now I realize that situations arise beyond our control that hinder us from being here, but when we can control the situation we need to make every effort to be here, even if we are a little late, it is still good for us to be here.
6) Have strong convictions
The third verse of Jude says “Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.” In John the eighth chapter verse 32 it says “And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” 1 Peter chapter 5 and verse 8 says “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:” And Hebrews chapter 3 verses 13-14 says “ (13) But exhort one another daily, while it is called To day; lest any of you be hardened through deceitfulness of sin. (14) For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast unto the end;” So if we hold on to the confidence we have from knowing the truth in the end we will be partakers also, but we must remain vigilant and earnestly contend for the faith because the devil is waiting to devour us.
7) Do not shirk responsibility
In 1 Corinthians chapter 3 verses 7-11 it says “ (7) So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase. (8) Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour. (9) For we are labourers together with God: ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building. (10) According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon. (11) For other foundation can no man lay that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.” And 1 Timothy verses 17-18 says “ (17) Let the elders that rule well be counted worthy of double honour, especially they who labor in the word and doctrine. (18) For the scripture saith, THOU SHALT NOT MUZZLE THE OX THAT TREADETH OUT THE CORN. And, The labourer is worthy of his reward.” Hebrews chapter 2 verse 11 says “Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief.” And Ephesians chapter 4 verse 28 says “Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth.”
8) Will aid the sick and afflicted
James chapter 1 verse 27 says “Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.” And in 1 Timothy chapter 5 verse 16 says “If any man or woman that believeth have widows, let them relieve them, and let not the church be charged; that it may relieve them that are widows indeed.
9) Will keep themselves unspotted from the world
Again James chapter 1 verse 27 says “Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.” And 1 Timothy chapter 5 verse 22 says “Lay hands suddenly on no man, neither be partaker of other men’s sins: keep thyself pure.” Now how do we keep ourselves unspotted, look at Philippians chapter 4 verse 8 says “ Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.” Therefore if we meditate on the pure, true, honest, and just things and diligently search the scriptures daily and we can better able to keep ourselves unspotted from the world.
10) Will remain faithful (i.e. DEVOUT) until death
Revelation chapter 2 and verse 10 says “ Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life,” 2 Timothy chapter 4 verses 6-8 the Apostle Paul writes “ (6) For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand. (7) I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: (8) Hence forth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing,” And in 1 Peter chapter 1 and verse 13 it says “Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;” So the devout Christian will remain faithful in order to share the crown of life and the grace brought by the revelation of Jesus Christ.
So to conclude, “Devout Christians” are surely needed in every congregation today. Whenever Christians stand up for what is right, people will notice their actions. The world will not always agree with the Christian lifestyle and conduct but they will surely know that Christians are different than those in the world. Indeed, devout Christians are needed in all places.
By Ronald Marsteller Jr.based on an outline/article by Garreth L. Clair
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