#DailyDevotion Jesus Brings Us Good News!

#DailyDevotion Jesus Brings Us Good News!

Matt. 418As He was walking along the shore of the Sea of Galilee, He saw two brothers, Simon, also called Peter, and his brother Andrew (who were fishermen), casting a net into the lake. 19“Come, follow Me,” Jesus told them, “and I will make you fishers of men.” 20Immediately they left their nets and followed Him. 21He went on and saw two other brothers, James, Zebedee’s son, and his brother John. They were in their boat with their father Zebedee, mending their nets. He called them, 22and immediately they left the boat and their father and followed Him. 23 Then He went around everywhere in Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the good news of the kingdom, and healing every kind of disease and sickness among the people. 24 The news about Him spread all over Syria. And the people brought to Him all who were suffering from various diseases and were in great pain, the demon-possessed, the epileptics, and the paralyzed, and He made them well. 25Large crowds followed Him from Galilee, the Decapolis [Ten-Towns), Jerusalem, Judea, and the other side of the Jordan.

We now see in these verses the “Great Light” being shown in the darkness. First there is Jesus’ call to discipleship. We have the first four disciples Jesus calls, four fishermen who are partners in the fishing business, Simon, Andrew, James and John. When Jesus calls them they immediately leave family and business to follow Jesus. Jesus tells them he is going to make them fisher of men. The call to follow Jesus supersedes all worldly possessions, callings and relationships. When Jesus calls you, your life may never seem the same. People, places and things may have to change depending on what hold they have on you. The first commandment applies to Jesus; you shall have no other gods. If people, places and things get in the way of our relationship, our discipleship to following Jesus, those things must go.

So we see Jesus here at the great crossroads in the north. He is preaching the good news of the kingdom and backing it up with heaver every kind of disease and sickness among the people. The good news of the kingdom is its king is here. That king is Jesus. The Messiah has come. He has come to teach God’s people, to reach out to those who would believe in him through the message of his disciples, to proclaim the greatness of the LORD that there is forgiveness with him. Jesus himself pronounces absolution on sinners and the sick. He backs up that forgiveness, showing he has the authority to pronounce it by healing various diseases, casting out demons, restoring the epileptics and the paralyzed and making them all well.

As it is written Psalm 103 2”My soul, praise the LORD, and don’t forget all the good He does: 3 He forgives all my wrongs, heals all my sicknesses, 4saves my life from being destroyed, crowns me with kindness and mercy, 5and satisfies me with good things as long as I live so that like an eagle my youth is renewed. 6The LORD does what is right and just for all who are oppressed.” Jesus is this LORD. Jesus here comes to the poor and the oppressed. Jesus came to show God’s mercy and kindness by forgiving sins and then healing people. He even gave that authority to this disciples/apostles. While the physical healing he performs may only be perfected on the Last Day when he resurrects all flesh like his resurrection from the grave, he still through his messengers proclaims the forgiveness of sins and gives healing to our hearts and to our minds. He indeed does renew our strength and satisfies us with all good things.

Heavenly Father, you called us out of darkness into your Son’s marvelous light bring us into his kingdom through the forgiveness of our sins. Continually put his words in our lips that we may share this message of salvation to those still hurting. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

#DailyDevotion Jesus Is The Kingdom Of God

#DailyDevotion Jesus Is The Kingdom Of God

Matt. 412When Jesus heard John had been put in prison, He went back to Galilee. 13Leaving Nazareth, He went and made His home in Capernaum by the lake, in the area of Zebulun and Naphtali. 14And so what was said through the prophet Isaiah was to come true: 15 Land of Zebulon and land of Naphtali, the way to the sea, across the Jordan Galilee of the Gentiles! 16 The people sitting in the dark will see a great Light. For those sitting in the land of the shadow of death a Light will rise. 17 Then Jesus began to preach. “Repent — the kingdom of heaven is here!”

What the LORD had spoken by the mouth of the prophet had to come to pass. It is God’s Word. The former land of Israel had been run over by the Gentiles. While Jews settled the land of their brothers who were there no longer, the citizens of other countries who had overrun the area were now some of the main occupants. Darkness, spiritual darkness enveloped the land. Even the Jews who had God’s word a veil covered their eyes when Moses was read so they did not understand and many still do not to this day.

The LORD had move his son Jesus Christ to move into this area of Capernaum to fulfill the word of his prophets. Jesus Christ who is the light and life of the world had come to this place of darkness to begin his ministry—teaching the Jews the true meaning of the Law and proclaiming the good news. His teaching indeed was received as light by many, as many as were appointed to eternal salvation.

Jesus’ gospel message is quite simple, “Repent—the kingdom of heaven is here!” Repent! Be sorry for your sins. Be contrite and have a broken spirit over how your words, thoughts and deeds have offended your God and harmed your neighbor. Mourn over your death, the death wrought by your iniquities, your trespasses and your sins. Let the guilt and shame of your sins be manifest in your minds. Turn from your wickedness and hate it. Turn towards God who proclaims the kingdom of heaven is manifest.

Jesus is the kingdom of heaven. The kingdom of heaven is mercy, kindness, forgiveness, love, long-suffering patience towards turned towards you. God’s righteousness, glory and holiness has come to cover your brokenness and claim you as his own. The kingdom of heaven is here to give you by grace, as a gift what is rightfully his own, to save you, to redeem you and to ransom you.

While God’s righteousness, holiness and glory may initially cause us to fall down as dead men, when Jesus gives it to us by his grace it turns us towards the God and Father who made us and loves us. We can repent in joy knowing our Father in heaven is no longer angry with us but is reconciled to us through his son Jesus Christ. Are you going to be reconciled to him today?

Merciful and Loving Father, you sent your son Jesus Christ, the very kingdom of heaven into the darkness to make manifest your light. Grant us faith to repent of our sins and believe the good news we have been invited into your kingdom through faith in Jesus Christ your son our Lord. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

#DailyDevotion A Crucified Christ Is The Power & Wisdom Of God

#DailyDevotion A Crucified Christ Is The Power & Wisdom Of God

1 Cor. 120 Where is the wise man? Where is the Bible scholar? Where is the debater of our time? Hasn’t God made foolish the wisdom of the world? 21Since by God’s wisdom the world by its wisdom didn’t get to know God, God decided to use the foolishness of our preaching to save those who believe. 22Now that Jews ask for miraculous signs and Greeks look for wisdom, 23we preach a crucified Christ. The Jews stumble over Him, the Greeks think He’s something foolish, 24but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, He is Christ, God’s power and God’s wisdom. 25God’s foolishness is wiser than men’s wisdom, and God’s weakness is stronger than men’s strength.

Well everybody who thinks they are something according to the world’s standards of wisdom and knowledge have been made foolish by God. The world in its wisdom didn’t get to know God. It may believe there is a God. But they make God, on their best day, in their own image and likeness. Certainly as far as their gods character and the like, s/he/it is just like them just stronger, like superheros.

But the true God has revealed himself and his great love for us in that he sends his only begotten Son into the world to become one of us and to sacrifice himself for us. That is the foolishness of our preaching. This is love, not  that we loved God but that he loved us and sent his son to be the atoning sacrifice for the world, including those who would not believe in him. This is the message and the wisdom that saves those who will believe.

Some people, like the Jews ask for miraculous signs or they won’t believe. The God they say they worship gave Jesus who healed the sick, made the death hear and the mute speak, and raised the dead, God had him crucified, dead, buried and risen from the dead. Being risen from the dead is the only sign they get and they refuse to believe it despite the empty tomb.  They Greeks look for wisdom. People like this need everything to make sense. Yet God because he is God is far above human wisdom and understanding. They think they only see contradiction and foolishness yet God only gives them a crucified Jew outside of Jerusalem who died for their sins.

Yes, the only message we have is a crucified Christ. Christ the Author of Life and the Lord of Glory dead on a cross is our good news. He has overcome his own self-preservation and placed himself in the mercies and promises of his Father to die on the cross. By this crucifixion he has won for the world forgiveness, eternal life, communion with God, being made heirs and children of God and if that is too little for you even more, more than you can ask or imagine.. This is a stumbling block to those like Jews and foolishness to those like the Greeks.

Yet to those of us who are called, who have been chosen in Christ before the foundation of the world, Jesus is Christ, the power and the wisdom of God. God’s power is greater than man’s strength and his wisdom is greater than man’s wisdom.  For we see the need for our salvation. We see God’s wisdom in providing what we needed. We can see and experience the strength of his resurrection when we come to faith in Jesus for it is his power that makes that faith possible.

Almighty and all wise God and Father, you sent your Son Jesus Christ to die for our sins on the cross that we might have life and salvation. Grant us your wisdom continually so we may refute the critics and give us your Holy Spirit that we might have to power to persevere in this faith in Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

#DailyDevotion What Kind Of God Crucifies His Son?

#DailyDevotion What Kind Of God Crucifies His Son?

1 Cor. 118The message of the cross is something foolish to those who perish, but it is God’s power to us who are saved. 19The Bible says: “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise and defeat the intelligence of the intelligent.” 20 Where is the wise man? Where is the Bible scholar? Where is the debater of our time? Hasn’t God made foolish the wisdom of the world?

Most of us like crosses. Even the world seems to like crosses. They can be so pretty. We see them as jewelry on scores of people many of whom don’t even know Jesus Christ or anything about him. Yet for the ancient world in Jesus’ time the cross was an object of scorn. It was an instrument of death. Only the worst of the worst and lowliest of people were crucified. Those who were not citizens of Rome and were scorned by the people and their rulers were crucified. Jesus was crucified. He was not a citizen of Rome. He was scorned by the leaders and people of his day. Yet what message did Christians proclaim? Jesus Christ crucified.

Why would God crucify his son? It was a message of madness. A God that was crucified? Who would worship a God like that? Yes we proclaim the Lord of Glory was crucified. The Author of life hung upon a cross ordered by Rome. It makes no sense. And then to say that his crucifixion saves us from our sins, well that is foolishness. The Bible says, “Cursed is anyone hung on a tree.” So if Jesus was hung on a cross he was cursed by God. Indeed, Jesus became a curse for us on that tree. The curse of breaking God’s law is death. Jesus suffered our death for us on the tree of the cross. The curse of sin, our sin, was laid upon Jesus Christ on the cross. Eternal death which is our due Jesus took upon himself there on the cross.

“What kind of Father would do that to his son?”  we often hear from critics of our faith. What kind of Father indeed! A Father who wanted to spare all his children eternal punishment for their sins. God the Father wanted to save us from the Lake of Fire prepared to torture the rebellious angels. It is where we were headed because of our rebellion. A Father who wanted more children to call his own, whose only way to procure us as those children would be to sacrifice his only begotten son from eternity would do that to his son out of love for us.

Indeed not only the Father loved us but the Son as well for he voluntarily signed up for the job. His great love for us and to make us his people sent him to the cross to be the atoning sacrifice for our sins. His blood redeemed us and ransomed us from our iniquities, our sins, our trespasses, our guilt and shame, and from death. If he did not die for us upon the cross being pierced through for us, we would still be in our sins and accountable for them. Now through the preaching of the crucified Lord Jesus Christ, faith which believes this counts us righteous before the Father in heaven. Faith that believe this Jesus who was crucified but is also risen from the dead raises us to newness of life and gives us the life of the one crucified. This is foolishness to the world and a stumbling to the Jews who his people according to the flesh. But us who believe, the crucifixion is the wisdom of God and is wiser than all of man’s best thinking.

Heavenly Father we pray you would grant unto us your wisdom that we may receive the salvation won for us by your son Jesus Christ crucified. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

#DailyDevotion The Cross Of Christ Makes Glad The Children Of Abraham

#DailyDevotion The Cross Of Christ Makes Glad The Children Of Abraham

Isaiah 93The nation You didn’t make very happy You will multiply. Then they will be glad before You like those who celebrate the harvest or like those who delight in dividing the spoils. 4You will break the yoke that is a burden on them, the rod with which their backs are beaten, and the stick with which the tyrant drives them, as at the time of Midian.

Israel and Judah, one nation the LORD didn’t happy because of their rebellion against him, his rule and his way of life he had given them. Had they only delighted in the LORD and his commandments they would have been much happier. Instead, they hated the LORD and his ways. He put many to death and exile the lot of them never to be seen or heard from again with the exceptions of the Jews. The LORD promised to make multiply them. The LORD made descendents for Abraham by faith through the Gentiles. Like wild olive branches being grafted into a domestic olive tree (Rom. 9) the LORD has provided children for Abraham. Yes, through faith in Jesus the LORD has provided a heritage for Father Abraham. The Jews who believed the good news of Jesus Christ through his preaching and the teaching of his apostles rejoice before God in heaven and on earth below had been made glad and we rejoice with them when they fellow Jews in the flesh are grafted back in to Israel, to Jesus, God’s Israel. Celebrating bringing in the sheaves they have a great delight in the children the LORD has provided for Father Abraham.

Jesus of Nazareth, the LORD’s servant has broken the yoke that is a burden on them, the rod which have beaten their back and the stick of the tyrant that drives them. The Law which none of them has ever been able to keep, Jesus had kept in their place. Not only has he fulfilled all that the LORD had given them he has nailed it to the cross along with its accusations. We now live in the freedom of the Gospel and walk according to the Spirit.

The guilt, the accusations, the shame of not keeping the Law has been taken away and sent away by the blood of Jesus. Nailed to the cross, buried in the tomb, the power of sin through the Law of Moses cannot touch us, ALL OF IT. Jesus has become our sin offering. He is the Lamb of God who has made atonement for the sin of the world. That which the Law and our conscience has weighed down upon us it has been forgiven, sent away. It can no longer accuse us through faith in Jesus’ work on the cross.

The stick of that tyrant the devil has been broken. He used God’s Law against us. He tells us to obey God’s law to stir up the passions in our flesh and then he accuses us before when through the weakness of the flesh we break God’s law. Jesus victory over the devil has broken that stick. The devil, Satan, has been cast out of heaven and is not longer able to accuse us before God day and night. We now have an advocate with God the Father, his Son Jesus Christ. When we break God’s law or our conscience condemns us we only need look at the cross of Jesus and believe the Father no longer counts our trespasses against us. We need only remember the promise attached to our baptism that we are God’s children through Jesus. The voice of Jesus through his pastors who pronounce absolution in his name washes our conscience and makes them clean. The very body and blood of Jesus given us through his pastors’ hands assure us death has no hold of us.

Heavenly Father, you have sent your Son Jesus Christ to get children for Abraham by his death and resurrection. Grant us your Holy Spirit that we may avail of the means of grace when our conscience, the world and the devil accuse us. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

#DailyDevotion Who Or What Is In Your God Wallet?

#DailyDevotion Who Or What Is In Your God Wallet?

Isaiah 9:1–2 But the land that is in anguish will not continue in gloom. At first He humbled the country of Zebulun and the country of Naphtali, but in the end He will bring glory to the Road by the Sea, the land beside the Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles. 2The people walking in the dark will see a great light. On those who live in the land of gloom a light will shine.

Isaiah prophesies this in the ninth century B.C.. The Assyrians are on the rise in power in the Mideast. The LORD has raised them up to punish his unfaithful people. When they come to punish the wicked people of God who have exchanged the glory of God for idols of gold, silver, wood and rock, he brings those who worship such things to rule over them and expel them from the land. Coming into the Promised Land they come from the north and hit the northern tribes first, Zebulun and Napthali. Dan is apparently isn’t even on the scene by this time. The rest of Israel will soon fall and Assyria will even come down into rebellious Judah and surround the city of God, Jerusalem.

Yes, those tribes will be humbled and carried off never to be seen from again. They are mixed into the gentiles whose gods they have worshipped having humbled themselves before them. Are there gods you have exchanged the glory of God for? You may say we don’t worship idols of gold, silver, wood and stone! True enough. But what is it to have an idol? Martin Luther would say your god is what you turn to for EVERY GOOD. Do you turn to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ for every good? Or do you just turn to him for the forgiveness of your sins? Who are what do you turn to to deliver you from every evil of body, mind and soul? What do you turn to for comfort and strength? Is it to the Living God? If you sin then you most certainly have other gods.

We often turn to alcohol for comfort, strength and to face our fears. We go shopping. We turn to food to make us feel better. We have sex to feel better. We look to political parties and politicians to make our lives better and God forbid anyone say anything negative about them (though we let negative things about our Lord Jesus slide). We find our worth in our spouses, our children, our jobs and work. We turn to our congregations and pastors into idols. All these things are good in and of themselves when used for the purposes for which God created them. But when we turn to them as we should turn to God for every comfort, strength and good we exchange to glory of God for creatures, fall into idolatry and we abuse the good things the Lord our God has created. Sure we may find joy in these things but we dare not use them as God wants us to use him. He will hand us over to serve these things when we abandon him and humble by them.

But the road of Galilee of the Gentiles has seen a great light! He brings his glory there. The people living in gloom, in service to these idols a light has shined upon them. Jesus Christ of Nazareth has come. His teaching delivers us from servitude to dead idols. He brings us the Father of Lights who never leaves us or abandons us. He will provide all our needs of spirit, mind and body. He shows us we need not turn to any creature or creation for every good but that he himself gives us every good. Trust in Jesus. He is your light of your soul. He is your every good. He is the love of God the Father has for you.

Almighty God and Father, you will not share your glory with any other but have made your glory known to us in your Son Jesus Christ. Grant us your Holy Spirit that we may turn from created things to you for every good and live in your peace. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

#DailyDevotion We Have Found The Messiah, The Christ!

#DailyDevotion We Have Found The Messiah, The Christ!

John 135The next day, while John was again standing with two of his disciples, 36he saw Jesus passing by. “Look at the Lamb of God!” he said. 37When the two disciples heard him say this, they followed Jesus. 38Jesus turned around and saw them following. “What are you looking for?” He asked them. “Rabbi” (which means Teacher), “where are You staying?” they asked Him. 39“Come and you’ll see,” He told them. So they came and saw where He was staying, and they stayed with Him that day. It was about ten in the morning. 40 One of the two who heard John and then followed Jesus was Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother. 41He first found his own brother Simon and told him, “We have found the Messiah.” (The Greek word for Him is Christ.) 42He brought him to Jesus.

The day after the Baptist proclaimed Jesus is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world, he sees Jesus again. Again he proclaims Jesus the Lamb of God. It’s a rather peculiar phrase. One may wonder if it were popular during the intertestamental period. But I think it may have its reference here, Genesis 22:8 “God will provide Himself with a sheep for the burnt offering, my son.” If this is the reference then we can see that this Jesus will be the substitute for humanity. More than that, just as the LORD had asked Abraham to sacrifice his only son (Ishmael doesn’t count as legitimate since he was born of Sarah), The LORD himself offers up his only begotten son (as Jesus is designated in John’s gospel, particularly chapter one) as the Lamb who is substituted not only for Isaac but for the whole world.

This tells us something very important namely, if we are going to be saved from sin, death and the power of the devil then God is going to have to provide the work. If our sins are going to be atoned for, if our guilt is going to be removed from us, if our shame is to be taken away, God himself is going to have to do it. And God, the LORD, does do it in the person of his Son, the Word made flesh. He is the Lamb who was slain before the foundation of the world. (Rev. 13:8) We cannot save ourselves. We cannot contribute to our own salvation. The LORD provides the sacrifice that saves us.

Note what happens when the Baptist points Jesus out. Two of John’s disciples followed Jesus. They were John and Andrew. The message of the good news of Jesus Christ incites faith in those who belong to Jesus, who have been chosen by him before the foundation of the world. They went to where Jesus was staying and stayed with him that day. They would be his first disciples. Then notice what happened, Andrew went and told his brother Simon and said, “We have found the Messiah.” John brought Peter to Jesus.

And so it is with the Church today, people tell other people they have found the Messiah, the Christ, Jesus.  They bring those people to Jesus with their words of good news about what Jesus has done for them. They bring those people to the church i.e. their fellow believers where they hear more about Jesus and what he has done for them. Those who are God’s elect when they hear of Jesus will come with you to Jesus. Those who will reject him will reject you. We can only be like the Baptist and Andrew, behold the Lamb of God, we have found the Messiah, the Christ.

Heavenly Father, when we hear about the salvation you have provided us in Jesus your Son, grant us faith to believe and courage to share the good news, so those appointed to eternal life may be saved through our message of his sacrifice for them. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

#DailyDevotion Jesus Is The Fulfillment Of All Sacrifices

#DailyDevotion Jesus Is The Fulfillment Of All Sacrifices

John 129The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him. And he said, “Look at the Lamb of God Who takes away the sin of the world. 30He is the One I meant when I said, ‘A Man is coming after me but is ahead of me, because He was before me.’ 31Even I didn’t know Who He was, but I came and baptized with water to show Him to Israel.” 32John testified: “I saw the Spirit come down from heaven as a dove and stay on Him. 33I didn’t know Who He was, but He Who sent me to baptize with water told me, ‘When you see the Spirit come down on Someone and stay on Him, He is the One Who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’ 34I saw it and testified, ‘This is the Son of God.’”

This is a great text for the season of Epiphany. Jesus is being made manifest as the son of God not by signs and wonders but by the proclaimed word of God. John is the one making the proclamation. Seeing Jesus coming towards him he makes the gospel proclamation, “Look at the Lamb of God Who takes away the sin of the world.” Behold the Lamb of God!

What is John saying here? What has been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit which he is making known to us about Jesus? As far as I know, there are no explicit proclamations of a sacrifice of a lamb that atones for the sin of the world. Yet there are plenty types, allusions and prophecies concerning the messiah to come. In this proclamation by the Baptist he is making known there is to be one sacrifice to end all sacrifices. All of the sacrifices in the Law of Moses will be fulfilled in this man. In the Law there was a morning and evening sacrifice for the sins of Israel with a lamb. There was the sacrifice for individual sins with a lamb. There were the atoning sacrifices on the day of atonement with two goats and a bull.

And those sacrifices were for the people of Israel. But in Genesis 3:15 we are told about the seed of the woman who crushes the head of the serpent and is struck in his heel. Abraham is told his seed would be a blessing to the nations of the world and see the Lord provides a substitutionary ram in place of his son Isaac. We are told in Isaiah of the servant of the Lord who saves not only Israel but the nations as well. Isaiah prophecies how through his suffering our iniquities are atoned for, our guilt taken away and our sins are forgiven. And note the Baptist says Jesus takes away the sin of the world. Sin is in the singular. Jesus is the second Adam. By Adam’s sin, sin and death enter the world. By Jesus’ faith and obedience, righteousness and life enter the world.

John proclaims and makes Jesus known by what was revealed to him. The Spirit came upon Jesus in the form of a dove when he was baptized by John. The one who sent John, the Spirit, made known to him that when this happened, the anointed of the Spirit is the one who baptizes with the Holy Spirit. John baptized to make Jesus known. His baptism prepared the way for the LORD. Jesus is that LORD. John tells us, “This is the Son of God.” This Jesus of Nazareth is the promised sacrificial Lamb who takes away the sin of the world. He has taken away your sin and death and gives you his righteousness and life. For there is only one sin and there is only one righteousness and life. He is the tree of life whose fruit he gives to you freely.

Almighty God and Father, you sent your Son Jesus Christ to be the atoning sacrifice for the sin of the world. Grant us faith to believe this and receive from him eternal life and his righteousness. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

#DailyDevotion When Failing As A Christian Remember God Is Faithful

#DailyDevotion When Failing As A Christian Remember God Is Faithful

 1 Corinthians 1:4-9 4“I am always thanking God for you because of His grace which was given to you in Christ Jesus. 5For in Him you have been made rich in every way, in speech and knowledge 6of every kind, as the truth of Christ we spoke was confirmed in you.7And so you don’t lack any gift as you eagerly look for our Lord Jesus Christ to appear again. 8He will strengthen you to the end so that no one can accuse you of anything on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9You can depend on God, Who called you to the fellowship of His Son Jesus Christ, our Lord.

These are some wonderful, true words Paul gives to the Corinthians before ripping into them. Indeed, they are going to need these words to get through the reading of the riot act Paul is about to give through much of this epistle. Knowing these things are true will also get you through your toughest times as a Christian when you seemed to have failed at every point in your Christian life.

Despite all the failings of the Corinthians, Paul gives thanks for them because of the grace which was given them in Christ Jesus. We too can thank God for the grace given to us and to fellow Christians when they don’t seem to be living up to the Christian standards the Lord has given us and those we are looking at.

The Corinthians and us have been made rich in every way namely in speech and knowledge of every kind as the truth of Christ is confirmed in you. This is to say that the Lord through the teaching of the apostles has given us the things to say as Jesus promised through the Holy Spirit. He has enlightened our minds as to the nature of God, the persons of the Godhead, God’s will for us and his will and good favor toward us. He has given us the knowledge of his grace and his great love for us in Christ Jesus namely the Word of God, God’s only begotten son has taken on human flesh, become like us in every way and won salvation for us, for you, freely by his great love in his life, death and resurrection. We confirm this truth when we confess with our hearts and our mouths Jesus Christ is Lord, i.e. he is the LORD of the Old Testament.

Therefore, we do not lack any gift as we await the reappearance of our Lord Jesus Christ at his second advent. Yes, Jesus is coming back on the Last Day, with the blast of the last trumpet will all his holy angels to root out all that is evil and wicked in the world. What we need to persevere is given to the Church.

Paul gives us this promise that the Lord himself will strengthen us to the end so no one can accuse us of anything on the day of the Lord. He has promise to present us to the Father, holy, blameless, without fault, righteous clothed in his glory. You can depend on God to do this. He has called you into fellowship, participation in His Son Jesus Christ through faith and baptism into Christ. When you are doubting you will keep the faith, remember his promise. He is faithful. He will do it. If he can preserve the Corinthian congregation members unto the day of salvation, he can and will preserve you.

Merciful God and Father, we give you thanks and praise for the gift of salvation given to us in Christ Jesus and for the promise of preserving us in the faith unto everlasting life. Continue to give us whatever gifts we need to be faithful unto the end. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

#DailyDevotion We Know God’s Will Towards Us In Jesus

#DailyDevotion We Know God’s Will Towards Us In Jesus

1 Cor. 1:1-3 PAUL, APOSTLE OF CHRIST JESUS, called by God’s will, and Sosthenes, my fellow Christian, 2to God’s church in Corinth, made holy by Christ Jesus and called to be holy, with all who anywhere call on the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, their Lord and ours —3may God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ give you grace and peace.

Paul was an apostle of Christ Jesus. That is to say, he was had seen the Lord Jesus Christ risen from the dead. He was taught by Jesus Christ in the wilderness after receiving his sight back from the Lord. He was sent by Christ Jesus to preach the good news of the kingdom of God to the Jew first and then the Gentiles. He was called by God’s will to be an apostle of Christ Jesus. It wasn’t Paul’s will. When Paul was still Saul he persecuted the Church of God and with such fervor even chased it down to Antioch which chains in order to jail the disciples of Jesus Christ. Jesus though had other plans. God had other plans. Have you ever thought you were doing God’s will only to end us having God change your plans and set you on a completely different course? Well now Paul has the full authority of an Apostle of Jesus to teach with power and authority, with signs and wonders.

Paul is not alone. Sosthenes his fellow Christ is with him. He was the ruler of the synagogue in Corinth when Paul first starting preaching there. The Jews who would not believe Paul beat Sosthenes in front of the tribunal in Corinth after Gallieo the governor there refused to do anything to Paul. He too had suffered for the name of Christ Jesus.

Now what Paul writes to the Corinthians he also writes to you. They were made holy by Christ Jesus and were called to be holy with all who call on the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. He is their Lord and he is our Lord. They were made holy by the preaching of repentance for the forgiveness of sins in the name of Jesus of Nazareth and by baptism into that name. It is the word, the gospel, the good news that God justifies the ungodly, saves sinner, makes his enemies his friends through faith in what Jesus Christ of Nazareth did for them on the cross, by his death and resurrection and by being joined to him in his life death and resurrection in baptism that made them holy.  

To those whom Christ Jesus has made holy by his blood Paul blesses them with grace and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Yes we have God’s favor for the sake of our Lord Jesus Christ. His favor has come to us by the gospel, the proclamation of the Father’s acceptance of us on account of Jesus’ death and resurrection. The Lord Jesus Christ bestows his grace and favor on us through his apostles and all he sends to preach him as the crucified Lord of Glory. We have peace with God the Father through the violence visited upon Jesus in his trial, crucifixion and death. God is no longer angry with us. He is not counting our trespasses against his will and our consciences. We have access to him through the blood of Jesus and know his great love for us in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Heavenly Father, continually bring us your servants who proclaim grace and peace to us through Jesus Christ by his innocent suffering and death and who make us holy by his appointed means of grace. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.