Jesus went to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and on the Sabbath day he went into the synagogue, as was his custom. And he stood up to read. ~ Luke 4:16 (NIV)
“As was his custom.” It’s pretty easy to read past those words, isn’t it? But the reality is, there’s a world of good news in those words. Remember, Jesus came to this earth because you and I needed a Savior. We’re sinful human beings who deserved to be sent to hell. So, Jesus came to this earth and he died on the cross, paying for our sins.
But that’s only half the story.
Why so? Because God’s standard for going to heaven isn’t merely that our sins be taken away. Also, God requires that we be positively perfect! Completely holy! And you and I must say, “UGGH! I’m in trouble!”
Ah, but no! You’re not in trouble at all! For you have a Savior who not only died for you, but who also lived for you! He lived perfectly, in every sense of the term! He perfectly loved God; he perfectly loved his neighbors. He was perfectly kind, just, fair, loving. In the Bible verse for our devotion today, we’re reminded that he worshiped God perfectly: “as was his custom.”
And here’s the really good news! You get credit for what Jesus did! Yes, you get the credit not only for Jesus’ death, but also for his life–the way that Jesus perfectly loved God. God has credited that to your account, so that now God considers you to have loved him perfectly, too. Jesus loved his neighbors perfectly: God now considers you to have loved your neighbors perfectly, too. Jesus worshiped perfectly: God considers you to have worshiped perfectly, too, for you have been credited with that perfect life of Jesus!
So there’s a world of good news in that phrase “as was his custom”. It’s a reminder that in the eyes of God, you are perfect and holy because of Jesus. What a phrase! What a truth!
Lord God, remind me of my status: that you’ve credited Jesus’ perfect life to me. Help me follow the example of Jesus in all that I do. In His name I pray. Amen.