Monday, January 16, 2012

Faithful with the Gospel

Faithful with the Gospel

S -  Luke 16:10-18 (NASB)

 10 “He who is faithful in a very little thing is faithful also in much; and he who is unrighteous in a very little thing is unrighteous also in much. 11 Therefore if you have not been faithful in the use of unrighteous wealth, who will entrust the true riches to you? 12 And if you have not been faithful in the use of that which is another’s, who will give you that which is your own? 13 No servant can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and wealth.”
 14 Now the Pharisees, who were lovers of money, were listening to all these things and were scoffing at Him. 15 And He said to them, “You are those who justify yourselves in the sight of men, but God knows your hearts; for that which is highly esteemed among men is detestable in the sight of God.
   16 “The Law and the Prophets were proclaimed until John; since that time the gospel of the kingdom of God has been preached, and everyone is forcing his way into it. 17 But it is easier for heaven and earth to pass away than for one stroke of a letter of the Law to fail.
   18 “Everyone who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery, and he who marries one who is divorced from a husband commits adultery.

O - I can see how it is important to understand the context of the surrounding text in scripture before completely interpreting its meaning or intent.   Here we find Jesus speaking to the pharisee's and He tells the parable of the unrighteous servant who does not handle the masters wealth well and is fired for it.   Jesus then tells them why they (pharisee's) are struggling because they cannot serve two masters God and wealth.  Since they have chose wealth it has come at the expense of their devotion to God, to the extent they don't recognize the God sent Christ and they have loved the wealth and prestige of their positions more than the intent of the Law.   Then Jesus goes on to explain the change that has occurred,  the Law and prophets proclaimed the way to God, and now the gospel of the kingdom of God is here, and only through individual repentance and reconciliation with the Father (through Christ) will the kingdom of God be reached.

A - The application for me is one of understanding of the nature of man, and the grace of God and His plan to restore the Kingdom of God and man into a relationship.   Three points for that to occur in each of us are:
1.  We must die to our love of the world and wealth.  It is easy to scoff at the pharisee's but they are us in many ways when we follow tradition for righteousness sake without knowing who God is.
2.  Break the paradigm that if we follow the all the rules we will be o.k.   Instead recognize that God is seeking us and His kingdom awaits by simply choosing Him over the world.  Restoration from the original sin of Adam is one of recognizing we need God more than we need complete command of all that is in the world.

3.  Repent of our past and allow Grace to save us and not self.  Repentance is simply turning towards God, when we may be walking away from him.

P - Dear heavenly Father, thank you for today's devotion, may it be sealed to my heart.  I pray Lord you would give me wisdom and skills required to share the Gospel to the world in a way in which they will receive it.   I pray all this in Jesus name, Amen.

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