In a recent sermon, David Platt asked, “Will we live for self-gratification or God-glorification?” Those are our only two options. We will live for God or we will live for ourselves. Living for ourselves is a more palatable way of saying we will live to glorify Satan. That sounds harsh and shocking. We don’t want to think in those terms, which is why we mask it with words like selfishness and self-gratification.
But know this, there are only two powers in the spiritual realm: God and Satan. Jesus spoke plainly when He said we cannot serve two masters (Matthew 6:24). We will love the one and hate the other. Every time we say no to Jesus, we say yes to the devil. This is the uncomfortable truth that applies to every decision we make, word we speak, or action we take.
I don’t enjoy knowing this. As I survey my life, I am ashamed and appalled at how often I have said no to Christ and yes to Satan. It is beyond sobering. Truth has a way of jolting us out of wrong thinking, and the truth is we do not give the proper weight to our everyday living. We are content to go our way, looking out for ourselves and ignoring the commands of Jesus. Few followers of Christ intentionally thumb their nose at the Savior and welcome Satan into their world, but that is what we are doing.
Jesus said we are either with Him or against Him (Mark 9:40). Since we know the adversary is against Jesus, it follows when we align ourselves against Christ, we are aligning ourselves with the devil. Let that sink in for a minute. If we embrace this truth, it will radically change the way we live. Everything we do, see, speak, and think would pass through the filter of whether it is for God’s glorification or our self-gratification. We will come to understand every bit of life is a part in the great war between God and Satan.
Our lives are not our own. We will devote them to one of the two spiritual forces in the Universe. Our choice is to choose Jesus and live for Him, or live our lives doing the bidding of the devil. We know which we should choose. It’s an easy decision because we’re privy to the end of the story. We know how all this concludes. God will win, and Christ will reign victorious. Why would anyone purposefully choose to fight on the side guaranteed to lose?
Choosing self-gratification is choosing Satan over Jesus. Never forget that and turn away from any hint of selfishness. We are not the masters of the universe or our destiny. Jesus is Lord over everything and everyone. Our choice is whether we will accept His Lordship and surrender our lives to Him. The alternative is to live for the evil one. While the choice of what is right is obvious, we spend much of our life playing for the wrong team. No more. Let us all rededicate ourselves to the only one who is worthy of our praise. Live your life in surrender to Him, doing everything for His glorification and not that of the enemy.