now when day came, there was no little disturbance among the soldiers over what had become of peter. and after herod searched for him and did not find him, he examined the sentries and ordered that they should be put to death. then he went down from judea to caesarea and spent time there. [acts 12:18-19]


the world will not acknowledge the wondrous acts of God. an angel has just miraculously freed peter from prison. the believers of judea have been boldly proclaiming the power of Jesus Christ, preaching shamelessly through trial and tribulation, yet when that power is demonstrated, herod and the sentries do not consider the possibility that what the disciples have been preaching is actually true. there must be an explanation. there must be someone to blame. here, it cost these sentries their lives, a common sentence for guards who lost their prisoners on death row.


the world is no different today. as God displays his glory in millions of ways day in and day out, the world seeks to explain it all away. they would do anything to keep from acknowledging the glory of God and bending their knee to his sovereign rule.

for the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. for what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. for his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. so they are without excuse. for although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. claiming to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things. [romans 1:18-23]


this is how it has been since the fall of man in the garden of eden. deny God’s authority and follow the lie of self sufficiency. this is the way the world thinks and lives. it is the way we all once thought and lived. dead in our sins, we denied God’s rule over our lives, denied his glory, followed our own way, seeking to fulfill our own desires.

and you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience— among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. but God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. [ephesians 2:1-7]


praise the Lord for being so rich in mercy! thanks be to God for his miracle of salvation!


today, alone in his presence, acknowledge once again his glory and his sovereign rule over all things. praise him for revealing his glory to you, for sharing his joy, and for giving you a new heart to love and enjoy him. confess any areas of your life where you may not be acknowledging his rule, whether time or money, relationships or career, children or even ministry. let us not be like the world, but transformed by the power of the gospel daily! 

do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. [romans 12:2]


~ arwen eastman