Devotion for Monday in the First Week in Advent

“And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules. You shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers, and you shall be my people, and I will be your God. And I will deliver you from all your uncleannesses. And I will summon the grain and make it abundant and lay no famine upon you. I will make the fruit of the tree and the increase of the field abundant, that you may never again suffer the disgrace of famine among the nations. Then you will remember your evil ways, and your deeds that were not good, and you will loathe yourselves for your iniquities and your abominations. It is not for your sake that I will act, declares the Lord God; let that be known to you. Be ashamed and confounded for yourways, O house of Israel.

“Thus says the Lord God: On the day that I cleanse you from all your iniquities, I will cause the cities to be inhabited, and the waste places shall be rebuilt. And the land that was desolate shall be tilled, instead of being the desolation that it was in the sight of all who passed by. And they will say, ‘This land that was desolate has become like the garden of Eden, and the waste and desolate and ruined cities are now fortified and inhabited.’ Then the nations that are left all around you shall know that I am the Lord; I have rebuilt the ruined places and replanted that which was desolate. I am the Lord; I have spoken, and I will do it.” ~ Ezekiel 36:26-36

God is a just and righteous God, One who is concerned about the glory of His name. Anything God does for us is not because of us—we don’t deserve anything. So often we disobey God, we go our own way, we choose evil over good. Yet for the sake of His glory, He will restore the heavens and the earth. When Jesus comes again, we will live in that new Jerusalem, a new Eden. And there will be no doubt who the Lord is. Everyone will recognize that He is the Creator of the Universe, the Ruler of the Cosmos, the King of all nations. We will bow down and worship Him, the One who always does what He says.

Lord God, thank You that You always do what You say You will do. And You have said that Jesus will come again in glory and that those who love You will live in a new world with You as its King. I look for that day, O Lord, but in the meantime, help me to live righteously in this evil world. In the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

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