Thu May 16-To Attend Upon All the Ordinances of God

Genuine faith is love in action,

Galatians 3:23-29 (CEB)

23 Before faith came, we were guarded under the Law, locked up until faith that was coming would be revealed, 24 so that the Law became our custodian until Christ so that we might be made righteous by faith.

25 But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a custodian.

26 You are all God’s children through faith in Christ Jesus. 27 All of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Greek; there is neither slave nor free; nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 Now if you belong to Christ, then indeed you are Abraham’s descendants, heirs according to the promise.


I like the statement in our scripture calling the law “the custodian of faith” – a place marker if you will – until Jesus came. When I think about Wesley’s third General Rule for Methodists, “to attend upon all of the ordinances of God,” I think about this rule being like the law. Now don’t get me wrong, I am a law-abiding citizen, but it is sometimes hard for me to follow the rules and stay in line. I very rarely just get a menu item as it is listed, I wear stripes and flowers together, my house has several different colors and several different types of flooring, and I do not like to be told what to do. So, on the surface, this rule seems to be more like following the law, but when we look at all three of John Wesley’s General Rules, we see that they are really just methods for building relationships. Of course we are focusing on our relationship with God, but these things make sense as a blueprint for helping us to nurture all of our relationships.

Just like in our other relationships, we get together with people to support them, we gather for worship to thank God and to meet with and support others. We bring our offering just like we would take flowers or a coffee to a friend. We take communion with others as Jesus did with his friends. When we pray it’s like sending a card or a text to a loved one to let them know we have been thinking about them. These are not laws, they are just good ways to build our relationships – with God and with others, who according to our scripture are children of God, thus our siblings. And as our scripture says – ALL are one in Christ. John Wesley developed a methodology that has really stood the test of time and the changes in our culture. It is a testament to his faith in our Lord, and we can continue to follow his path in our lives today by following his three rules which we all can work on – even if we tend to be a bit rebellious!

by Janet Waryck

For Pondering and Prayer

What things can we do to build our relationships with God and with others?

Prayer: Dear God, help us to remember what Jesus did for us. Help us to be grateful and to work on our relationship with you as we work to strengthen our relationships with others. Amen.

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