Thursday, July 7 – Acts 8:20-23
But Peter said to him, “May your silver perish with you, because you thought you could acquire the gift of God with money! You have no part or share in this matter, for your heart is not right before God. Therefore, repent of this wickedness of yours, and pray to the Lord that, if possible, the intention of your heart will be forgiven you. For I see that you are in the gall of bitterness and in the bondage of unrighteousness.”
Peter’s response to Simon’s request might be paraphrased, “I can see right through you.” We use this to tell someone we can see past the exterior to their true motivation. Simon asked to pay for the power of the Holy Spirit that was given to other believers. His request may have sounded nice, but Peter saw right through it. Insincere words in the kingdom of God get us nowhere. In fact, they hurt our relationship with God. Peter told Simon “You have no part or share in this matter, for your heart is not right before God.” These words may sound harsh, but they reveal the deeper concern God has for our souls. A heart that is after self-promotion has no place in a life transformed to magnify the King. It may be easy to fake it in front of others, but God is not interested in our surface-level “amens” or quick and easy answers. He is after our hearts and nothing less.
Where is your heart before God? What has your attitude been when requesting things in prayer? Since we know God’s power, it is easy to feel like God owes us something. We want His work, our way, in our timing, and for our immediate benefit. Take time to remind yourself of who He is so that you can come before Him with a sincere heart. Be honest with God today, tell Him about your hurt, temptations, and celebrations, asking Him to form you into His image every step of the way.
- Where do you struggle with self-promotion?
- When have you been insincere? How can that habit be damaging to a follower of Jesus?
- Pray and ask God to take away your tendencies of self-promotion so that you will be made into His image for His glory.