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“That Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height—to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.”
Ephesians 3:17-19

Friday, July 22, 2011


"These things indeed have an appearance of wisdom . . . but are of no value--" Colossians 2:23

I was perusing in Internet looking for a good rate on an airline ticket. Over on the left side of the screen, I noticed a box that proclaimed the airlines had just lowered their prices to the very city to which I wanted to go. Yippee, I thought I’d found myself a bargain!

Clicking on the unknown on the Internet is never a good idea. Within two minutes, my computer was slammed with a nasty Trojan horse virus that, among other things, disabled my real antivirus software. Then this insidious malware proceeded to take on the appearance of something else, using well-known logos and acting as though it was warning me of the attack. All I had to do, it said, was click on this security tab and register for their protection and they would insure my computer would be safe. In fact, clicking on their registry would have given them access to all my personal information, bank accounts, credit cards, bill pay information, account numbers . . .

It looked like something it was not. It stole the logos and language of a company I trusted, like a wolf in sheep’s clothing, and snuck into my computer under the guise of false promises. It was an imposter.

When my computer-guru husband got home, it took him almost five hours to outsmart this thing and eradicate it from my machine. I was so thankful that my husband had the knowledge and computer skills that I lack, and was able to do what I couldn’t.

In the book of Colossians, the apostle Paul addressed the people who were confused about the rules and legalities. They were trying to follow all the man-made decrees and commands, thinking their conformity would be looked upon by God as something good. These mandates were disguised as sanctification, but it was a lie. Paul pointed out that all their good appearances were worthless because Christ was the One who forgave their sin, having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us, and He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross. (Colossians 2:13-14)
Christ disarmed those principalities and powers, and triumphed over them. He did what we could not do for ourselves.

Becoming so immersed in legalities instead the substance of true holiness robs us of the peace and joy of trusting wholly in Christ and His shed blood. When we try to add to what Christ has already done, it’s like telling Him His death on the cross wasn’t enough.

So many things in this world have the appearance of being good, or noble, or praiseworthy. Many pursuits appear innocent, but anything that suctions life from us is not of God.

That computer virus tried to make me believe it was safe by using the disguise of something I trusted. But someone smarter than me had the power to disarm and disable it.

Sometimes good works are disguised as a pathway to holiness. Good works are fine as long as they aren’t used as a substitute for what only Christ can do. Works don’t make us holy or ensure us a place in heaven. If that were true, then Christ died in vain. God help us to learn to be discerning—knowing the difference between true salvation and the imposters.

Thanks for letting me share my heart.

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