Foundations of Piety
13 July 2010
The four foundations of piety: patience to withstand every desire, forbearance to withstand every wrong, asking pardon for every deception, forgiving every sin.
- Colman mac Beognai, Aipgitir Chrabaid (Irish, 7th century)
Then Peter came up and said to him, "Lord, how often will my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? As many as seven times?" Jesus said to him, "I do not say to you seven times, but seventy times seven."
- Matthew 18.21, 22
Colman's "Broom of Devotion" was intended as a kind of handbook on Christian piety, a quick and ready guide outlining the essentials of the life of faith. Key ideas are repeated at various places, using different meters and poetic forms, but always reinforcing one another so the critical components of the holy life could be easily remembered.
The foundations of piety which Colman outlines here reflect the life of our Lord Jesus Himself. He resisted every temptation, so that He was without sin. He bore up under every imaginable wrong, taking our scorn and judgment upon His own body. He sought pardon for every sin which you or I have or will commit, pleading His own blood on our behalf. And He forgives every sin of those who come to Him in faith, even if it's the 490th time they've committed that sin (or even more!).
Jesus is the Cornerstone of the Church (Eph. 2.20) and the Foundation of piety (1 Cor. 3.11). Rooted in Him, and being built-up into Him, we are being transformed into His very image, from glory to glory, as we follow in the path He walked, looking to His Word and drawing on the power of His Spirit (1 Cor. 3.12-18). To aspire to the life of piety is therefore to aspire to the life of Christ, to be like Jesus and to live out His grace and truth before all the people in our lives.
Do the people in your Personal Mission Field see in you a reflection of our Lord Jesus Christ? Do your speech and deeds toward them reflect His beauty, goodness, and truth? They can, and, as they do, others will truly see Christ in you, will wonder at the hope of glory you evidence, and will seek an explanation for what makes you so different from everyone else.
Is this what you aspire to in life? What could be more thrilling or glorious than showing Jesus to the world? Let us strive to be His witnesses in all piety and goodness, to the praise of the glory of His grace.
July Exercise Part 2: OK, you've been reading and doing some self-evaluation based on the brochure, Called to Be Witnesses. Now, for July 12-18, sit down with some Christian friends and share the results of your first week of this exercise. Make a copy of the brochure for each of your friends and challenge them to begin this exercise as well.
Today in ReVision: A News Couch Potato? Also new at the website today, we begin our next Kingdom Civics series on the "Founding Documents" of the Kingdom, and Every Thought Captive features the next installment of Satan, Bound.
This Week's Download: Called to Be Witnesses - Give a copy to your friends and begin talking together about how you can become more serious about piety.
At our book store are many resources to encourage and help you in your growth in the Lord. Hope you'll stop by.