Devotion to Christ

The following is an entry from my journal a couple of years ago. I came across it today and wanted to pass along this reminder of what is most important.

It always amazes me how little I’ve studied 2 Corinthians, yet how full it is of some of the most foundational truths. Whenever I read this book (not often enough) I’m struck with surprise when I get to familiar verses that I’ve heard my whole Christian life but forgot they were here. Today’s jewel:

“But I am afraid, lest as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, your minds should be led astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ.” – 2 Corinthians 11:3

Normally I focus on the second half of that verse. It’s a great statement of our #1 priority: simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ.

But today I’m aware of the first half. There is a war going on. And according to this passage the war is not just there to get us to fall into sexual temptation or conflicts with each other (although there is a battle in those areas as well). The enemy wants to lead our minds astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ.

What does this mean? If he wants to lead us away from simplicity of devotion I suppose he will try to complicate things. How do you fight simplicity? Make it elaborate. Confusing. Get our heads spinning. Get us thinking about all sorts of things besides Jesus.

What about war on purity of devotion? Devotion gets corrupted. Perhaps I get too enthralled with things near Jesus and I miss Jesus. Maybe the accusations come so that I feel dirty when approaching Him, forgetting that I am holy in His eyes.

And all this because the enemy would attack not just my devotion to Christ but the quality of my devotion to Christ. Why? Because my devotion to Christ is foundational to everything else in the Christian life. If he can get to the root he can affect all the growth from there.

God, help me take the most important things seriously. Help me to fix my eyes on Jesus and not look away. Help me to not be distracted by lesser things. Let my devotion to Christ be simple and pure.