Category | Devotional

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If you were to describe your life as a fragrance to the world, what would it be? Why?

  • Boy’s Locker room
  • A rose
  • Incense
  • Fish market
  • Fresh baked bread
  • Cinnamon and Spice
  • Sewer
  • Freshly picked peach
  • Durian
  • Socks
  • Potpourri
  • Roasted Meat
  • Cigarette Smoke
  • Other?


Each of these scents probably created images in your mind associated with the smell. One item in the list, Durian might be new to you.

How is the “King of Kings” like the “King of fruits?”
Durian has been called the “King of Fruits” and is native to Indonesia, Malaysia, and Brunei, although it can grow in any similar climate. Alfred Wallace, the natural historian who co-originated the theory of Natural Selection with Charles Darwin, describes the taste of durian in his book The Malay Archipelago: “A rich butter-like custard highly flavoured with almonds gives the best general idea of it, but intermingled with it comes wafts of flavour that call to mind cream-cheese, onion-sauce, brown sherry, and other incongruities.”

Anyone who loves Durian likes the smell. Their mouth may water at merely the smell. Many others can’t get past the smell to even try to taste it, and may even describe it as smelling “like something has died.” Paul compares Christians to a fragrance much like that of Durian.

Read 2 Corinthians 2:12-16

  • How can the same gospel be either the smell of death or the fragrance of life?
  • What determines the character of the fragrance?
  • How can you spread the aroma of Christ in your home, in school, in the workplace, and in the neighborhood?
  • What images might the fragrance of your lifestyle have on others?
  • How can you become more “the fragrance of Christ” to others?


Notice that Paul says “through us,” meaning it is not through angels but through the church-through Christians, through those who Jesus said are the salt of the earth and the light of the world–that the knowledge of Christ comes to the world.

A Fragrance
We must remember the purpose of the fragrance. It is like your reputation in that it precedes you. You don’t need a letter of recommendation. Our lifestyles become our letter. But the letter by itself isn’t enough. The fragrance by itself is not enough. It is merely to open the door so we can share the Gospel, share the knowledge of Jesus Christ.

  • In what ways can your life be an open door to the sharing of the gospel?


Pray that God might make the following verse true of your life:
“But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumphal procession in Christ, and through us spreads everywhere the fragrance of the knowledge of him”
– 2 Corinthians 2:14

Copyright 1998 by Ken Sapp

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