Links Daily Devotional

The Rules of the Game

What kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and godly lives. (2 Peter 3:11, NIV)

In a recent newsletter from the USGA, I noticed there would be a Rules of Golf seminar in Phoenix early in 2013, and that signups (first come, first served!) would begin in about a week. I’m not a golf Pharisee, but I do love the game and therefore I love the rules of the game. I set a reminder on my calendar to sign up for the seminar.

The date came, and I excitedly went to the USGA web site, found the appropriate page, began to review the information, and suddenly stopped faster than a Bubba Watson lob wedge shot into a soppy green. The USGA wanted $300 to teach me the rules.

I began to negotiate with myself. That amount of money would buy two new wedges, or three pairs of golf shoes, or six dozen brand new premium balls. A fleeting altruistic thought said it would also probably feed a child somewhere for a year. The real question, I realized, was this: Do I want to know the rules that well that much?

A similar but larger question came to mind. How much do I want to know about God’s rules? I asked myself if I would spend $300 to go to a two-and-a-half day seminar on the proper conduct of a Christian life. Smiling to myself, I decided I would if the lead instructor were Paul, James, or Peter. A great deal more for Jesus himself. Less for an early church father.

I dismissed the golf rules seminar and vowed to study my Rules of Golf book (along with Cases and Decisions) even more thoroughly in the future than I have in the past—which sounded much like my promise to myself to study God’s word more thoroughly in the future than I have in the past. Knowing the Rules of Golf can save you a stroke here and there, possibly at a critical time in a tournament or match. Knowing the law of God can do much more than that. Consider this word from the Lord to his servant Joshua, as recorded in Joshua 1:7-8: “Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.”

No signup required, and it doesn’t cost a penny.

Lewis Greer

December 11, 2012

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