WISDOM FOR LIVING DAILY DEVOTIONAL
AUGUST 9TH, 2021
TOPIC: DO GOOD, NOT EVIL
BY T. O. BANSO
“But do not forget to do good and to share, for with such sacrifices God is well pleased” (Hebrews 13:16 New King James Version).
Salvation is not by good works but by grace (Ephesians 2:8). The Bible says not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy, He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit (Titus 3:5). Nevertheless, we are saved to do good works. Ephesians 2:11 says we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.
Given this, doing good is supposed to be a normal way of life for a child of God. He doesn’t do good to be saved but he does good because that is what He is saved to do. Doing good is inherent in his new nature. We are born again to do good works.
Titus 3:8 says, “This is a faithful saying, and these things I want you to affirm constantly, that those who have believed in God should be careful to maintain good works. These things are good and profitable to men” (New King James Version). Verse 14 adds that Christians should learn to maintain good works, to meet urgent needs, that they may not be unfruitful.
Jesus commands that His followers should let their light so shine before men, that they might see their good works and glorify their Father in heaven (Matthew 5:16). Although we live in a world where evil is prevalent, we must show the world that we are in the world but not of this world. We must show that we belong to a different kingdom, the Kingdom of God. We are citizens of heaven (Philippians 3:20).
Non-believers may repay evil for evil and evil for good, but this should not be so for Christians (1 Peter 3:9). A Christian is not to repay evil for evil (Romans 12:17). God will fight for him. Proverbs 17:13 says if anyone repays evil for good, a curse is upon his home.
Non-believers may love their friends and hate their enemies, but Christians must not behave like that. Jesus said, “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust” (Matthew 5:43-45 New King James Version).
As Jesus said, if you love those who love you, you have no reward because even the tax collectors do the same. If you greet your brethren only, you have not done more than others because even the tax collectors do so. Jesus said we should be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect (Matthew 5:46-48). Luke 6:27-36 records similar words by Jesus.
Do good, not evil. Don’t think of whether you will or will not benefit from the person. Galatians 6:10 says as we have the opportunity, we should do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith. The apostle Paul told Timothy, “Command those who are rich in this present age not to be haughty, nor to trust in uncertain riches but in the living God, who gives us richly all things to enjoy. Let them do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to give, willing to share, storing up for themselves a good foundation for the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life” (1 Timothy 6:17-19 New King James Version).
Doing good or doing evil is a seed and whatever a man sows, he shall reap (Galatians 6:7). Just as it is not the person you do good to that will automatically pay you back, also, it is not the person you do evil to that will always pay you back. But there will always be harvests.
Do good, not evil. Even if someone does evil to you, don’t pay him back with evil. Those who do evil will reap evil. The Bible says evil shall slay the wicked (Psalm 34:21a). The wicked shall perish (Psalm 37:20a). God destroyed the earth with the flood because of the evil of the people (Genesis 6:5-11, 17; 7:11-24). He also destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah because of the outcry against the evil of the people (Genesis 18:20-21; 19:13; 23-29). Do good; don’t do evil.
David said, “Trust in the LORD and do good. Then you will live safely in the land and prosper” (Psalm 37:3 New Living Translation). He further told us in verse 27 to turn from evil and do good, and we shall live in the land forever. Do good, not evil. 1 Peter 3:6 says the women who do good or what is right without fear of any terror are the daughters of Sarah who obeyed Abraham, calling him lord.
Cain did evil to his brother, Abel. He killed him (Genesis 4:8). Amnon did evil to Tamar his half-sister. He raped her (2 Samuel 13:1-22). Judas Iscariot did evil to his Master, Jesus. He betrayed Him (Matthew 26:14-16, 47-56; Mark 14:43-52; Luke 22:47-53; John 18:1-13). Paul said, “Alexander the coppersmith did me much evil: the Lord will render to him according to his works” (2 Timothy 4:14 American Standard Version). The list continues in the Bible. But each of them suffered the consequences for his action. Are you doing good or evil?
The Shunammite woman did good to the prophet Elisha; she showed him hospitality (1 Kings 17:1-10). The wise men did good to Jesus when they found Him as a child with the mother, Mary; they gave him gifts (Matthew 2:11). Some women did good by contributing from their resources to support Jesus and His disciples (Luke 8:2). The good Samaritan did good to the wounded Jewish man (Luke 10:25-37).
The Macedonian churches – the Philippians, Thessalonians, Bereans, and others in the Macedonian region – did good by giving to the poor saints though they were going through much trouble and hard times (2 Corinthians 8:1-5). Paul specifically mentioned that the Philippians gave him financial help more than once (Philippians 4:15-18).
Also, the household of Onesiphorus did Paul good. He said, “The Lord grant mercy to the household of Onesiphorus, for he often refreshed me, and was not ashamed of my chain; but when he arrived in Rome, he sought me out very zealously and found me. The Lord grant to him that he may find mercy from the Lord in that Day – and you know very well how many ways he ministered to me at Ephesus” (2 Timothy 1:16-18 New King James Version).
Tabitha (Dorcas) was full of good works and did charitable deeds. She provided widows with coats and other garments. When she died, God heard the passionate cry and desire of the widows who had benefitted from her generosity and raised her back to life through the prayer of the apostle Peter. God paid Tabitha back with restoration back to life! (Acts 9:36-41). The harvest is always more than the seed you sow!
Do good, not evil. The good you do is not a waste. Jesus said concerning the woman who anointed His head with an alabaster flask of very costly fragrant oil, “Why do you trouble the woman? For she has done a good work for Me. For you have the poor with you always, but Me you do not have always. For in pouring this fragrant oil on My body, she did it for My burial. Assuredly, I say to you, wherever this gospel is preached in the whole world, what this woman has done will also be told as a memorial to her” (Matthew 26:10-13 New King James Version).
Do good, not evil. You will reap it. You may reap some harvests here on earth but the real reward is in eternity. “Then the King will say to those on His right hand, ‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me’” (Matthew 25:34-36 New King James Version).
The righteous will ask when they did all this good to Him. Then, the King (Jesus) will tell them that because they did it to one of the least of His brethren, they did it to Him (Matthew 25:40). The wicked will also ask when they failed to do the King all the good that the righteous did. He will tell them that because they did not do it to one of the least of His brethren, they did not do it to Him (Matthew 25:45).
Christians should learn to do good. Isaiah 1:17a says to learn to do good. The Bible also says to depart from evil and do good (Psalms 34:14a; 37:27a). “He who would love life and see good days, Let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips from speaking deceit. Let him turn away from evil and do good; let him seek peace and pursue it” (1 Peter 3:10-11 New King James Version). Exodus 23:2a says not to follow a crowd to do evil. “But do not forget to do good and to share, for with such sacrifices God is well pleased” (Hebrews 13:16 New King James Version).
Do good, not evil. It is a sin to know to do good and not to do it (James 4:17). “For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to evil. Do you want to be unafraid of the authority? Do what is good, and you will have praise from the same. For he is God’s minister to you for good. But if you do evil, be afraid; for he does not bear the sword in vain; for he is God’s minister, an avenger to execute wrath on him who practices evil” (Romans 13:3-4 New King James Version).
Do good, not evil. If your good deed is rewarded with evil, don’t despair. The apostle Peter says God will bless anyone who endures the pain of undeserved suffering because he is conscious of His will (1 Peter 2:19). If your good deed is not appreciated, don’t be discouraged.
Galatians 6:9 says we should not become weary in doing good for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. The eyes of the LORD are on the righteous, and His ears are open to their prayers, but the face of the LORD is against those who do evil (1 Peter 3:12). Do good, not evil.
If you are not born again, you need to give your life to Jesus now. I urge you to take the following steps: *Admit you are a sinner and you cannot save yourself and repent of your sins. *Confess Jesus as your Lord and Saviour. *Renounce your past way of life – your relationship with the devil and his works. *Invite Jesus into your life. *As a mark of seriousness to mature in the faith, start attending a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church. There they will teach you how to grow in the Kingdom of God.
Kindly say this prayer now: O Lord God, I come unto you today. I know I am a sinner and I cannot save myself. I believe that Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and resurrected the third day. I repent of my sins and confess Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. I surrender my life to Jesus now and invite Him into my heart. By this prayer, I know I am saved. Thank you, Jesus, for saving me and making me a child of God.
I believe you have said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You will need to join a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church in your area where they will teach you how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like the palm tree and grow like the cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things and become all God wants you to be. I will be glad to hear from you. The Lord be with you.
PRAYER POINTS: Father, forgive me for the evil I have done in the past. Holy Spirit, help me to do good and not only talk about it. Help me to do good, not evil. I will not become weary in doing good. I will not miss my reward in Jesus’ name.
(For over 600 in-depth and powerful messages by T. O. Banso, visit www.cedarministry.org).
T. O. Banso is the President, Cedar Ministry International, Abuja, Nigeria.
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