And when Jesus came to that place, he looked up and said to him, “Zacchaeus, come down quickly, because I must stay at your house today.” Lk 19.5
They say that opportunity knocks only once. The phrase means that we have to recognize opportunity when it appears and take advantage of the moment, since we’ll not have another chance.
Jesus shows us another reality. He created his opportunities. He didn’t wait for opportunity to appear. He didn’t wait around for the moment. He by whom the world was created continued creating on earth opportunities to take the Father’s word to people. Continue reading
God deserves all the praise. He has done it all. We merely respond positively to his powerful and grace-filled actions. God is the subject, and all the verbs are his. He reveals, saves, calls, redeems, sanctifies, preserves, equips, transforms, loves, judges, disciplines, sends, and blesses. So let us make him the object of our praise!
READ: “teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you” Mt 28.20.
THINK: Teaching is a process by which God’s will and Christ’s commandments (contained in Scripture) become known. By the knowledge of these, one becomes capable of teaching, 2 Tim 3.16-17. So the content has already been defined, as well as the objective, that of obeying Christ. In order to learn the right attitude of fear of God, it is necessary to teach, Psa 34.11; Pro 22.19. Continue reading
READ: “On the first day of the week, each of you should set aside some income and save it to the extent that God has blessed you …” 1 Cor 16.2.
THINK: The offering supplies needs of the family of God and supports the preaching of the Good News. Instructions have been given on how to do it on the first day as well as examples among the congregations of the first century. We ought to give generously and sacrifically, 2 Cor 8—9. Jesus received offerings from his followers, Lk 8.1-4. Continue reading
READ: “constantly pray” 1Th 5.17.
THINK: Constancy is a main feature of prayer, in the name of Christ, Jn 15.16, in the Holy Spirit, Jd 20, for the saints, Eph 6.18, with faith, Jas 1.5-8, for the work of Christ, Lk 10.2. It includes praise, gratitude, supplications, intercessions, confession, Mt 6.5-15. Prayer is for every moment. In prayer we talk to God, half of our conversation with him. (In the Bible, he speaks to us.) Continue reading
READ: “and forgive us our sins, for we also forgive everyone who sins against us” Lk 11.4.
THINK: Forgiving one’s brother is a condition to receiving God’s forgiveness. It must be from the heart, Mt 18.35, and has no limits, Lk 17.1-10. Forgiveness means regaining a brother and is thus a joyful process, for forgiveness means reconciliation and deliverance, Col 1.14; Eph 1.17. Continue reading
READ: “He summoned the multitude, and said to them, ‘Hear, and understand'” Mt 15.10 WEB.
THINK: There is no salvation without hearing the Good News. It is possible to hear and understand. It is not too difficult. Jesus spoke his message to the multitude. He meant for everyone to hear, not a select group. We all have the responsibility to hear and understand. We will be judged by our hearing. Continue reading
In my personal reading today, two chapters appeared together, 1 Corinthians 15 and 1 John 4, both making the connection between doctrine and association with false teachers. Paul cites a poet, in proverbial form, to warn against the danger of fellowship with those who teach false doctrine. Continue reading
By J. Randal Matheny © 2015
It’s good to know what you want, and better still,
To want what’s good and right — and better yet,
To work promoting fruit of righteousness.
How useless words without the power of action!
How barren the sound alone, when hands are slack!
None can withstand the will and work and word,
United in the goal to glorify God.
By J. Randal Matheny © 2015
Speak long of selfless love,
Of kind attention, caring deeds;
Not only speak, but act without
Delay, at the heart’s first light of mercy.