3 Devotions based on next Sundsy’s (7thSunday after Pentecost) Scripture Readings
7th Sunday After Pentecost-Old Testament
TEXT: Isaiah 44:6-8
TITLE: The Challenge For Today
“Who is like Me? Let him proclaim it.” Isaiah.44:7a
“Try it, you’ll like it!” “Step across this line, I dare you!” “Eat it or are you chicken?” Challenges; what are we to make of them? Perhaps you’ve been on either the giving or the receiving end of one. God gives a challenge in our text. On the one hand, it was directed toward His wayward children of Judah that had strayed in their obedience to Him because of sin. They also strayed by following false gods and so God put before them the challenge recorded above. We, His children of today at times can be disobedient and follow false gods as well. Ours can be gods of our own fleshly desires; money, or work, or ourselves, or anything we put ahead of God.
Though punishment and captivity to Babylon lay in store for the children of Judah so also forgiveness and restoration. On the other hand, God has forgiven us through Christ Jesus and has restored our relationship with Him. With the devil, this world and our own sinful flesh as constants in our lives, we’re continually challenged to sin. Though sinners, thanks be to God for His forgiveness and Almighty power in our lives. We’re given a power through our Baptisms; His Spirit working in us. Since no one in all creation is like God, no challenge is too big for Him. Thus, we can stand up to whatever challenges face us!
Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for Your Presence to meet challenges in our lives. Help us share Your blessings with unbelievers that they might as well, Amen.
TEXT: Romans 8:18-27
TITLE: No Comparison
“I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.” Romans.8:18
“There’s no comparison!” People use that expression often to make a point regarding the
difference of two things. For example; a duck boat and an ocean liner, a handful of sand
and the Sahara Desert, restaurant food and anything cooked by my mother! So is the
difference immeasurably great between what we suffer now in this life and the life God
intends to reveal in us in heaven. This difference make all the difference in the world to a
Christian! On the one hand, we don’t believe we’re to someday be mere food for worms
like the unbeliever. If that be the case, what purpose would this life hold? On the other
hand, because of sin, we will be food for the worms!
Parishioners have intimated to me, “Pastor, I’m ready to die. Please pray the Lord take
me home.” My initial reaction was they shouldn’t say such things. It’s true, we don’t
always know how God is using us. But we do know in all things, even age and weakness,
God works good for those called according to His purpose. We all look forward to God’s
deliverance in His time which is perfect. We believe that even the best of our good life as
well as our life of struggle and especially suffering, will one day be replaced by
something unimaginably far better, and it will be…no comparison!
Dear Heavenly Father, grant me patience while I await Your promise of fulfillment to my life, as I help in bringing unbelievers Your saving Gospel message, in Jesus Name, Amen.
TEXT: Matthew 13:24-30, 36-43
TITLE: Living Amidst the Weeds
“Let both grow together until harvest.” Matthew 13:30
(Looking out the window) “There’s Ol’ Shep in our yard and he’s doing his thing again,” Bill said. “Why don’t the Johnson’s tie him up?” asked Sally, his wife. “They could care less. They let their kids run wild, they run wild, it only stands to reason they’d let their dog do the same!” Bill muttered. “I suppose,” What person looks to us sometimes as a ‘weed,’ only the Lord knows for sure. God knows our hearts and on Judgment Day, He is going to separate the weeds from the wheat. However, it doesn’t make it any easier at the present time for the wheat living amidst the weeds.
The fact God only knows this fact and calls us not to judge, and to love our enemies should give us some form of understanding as to how we’re to live amongst the ‘weeds.’
Another thing comes to mind, on the one hand, “All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.” We have a strain of weed running through our ‘hybrid’ lives of being a sinner/saint. On the other hand, thanks be to God, Jesus has eradicated all sin from the time of Adam for all time. This means we can live lives now assured of His grace sufficient and with the promise of life eternal. Jesus has made us a product of wholesome delight to His Father’s Glory and our eternal blessing!
Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for giving us faith and hope in Thy Kingdom’s coming, in Jesus Name, Amen.