Meditation for 07/09/2019
“There should be no poor among you, for in the land the Lord your God is giving you to possess as your inheritance, he will richly bless you. If only you fully obey the Lord your God and are careful to follow all these commands I am giving you today. There will always be poor people in the land. Therefore I command you to be openhanded toward your brothers and toward the poor and needy in your land.” (Deuteronomy 15:4-5, 11)
None of God’s people should be poor. We will have God’s blessing if we obey Him, but we refuse to obey Him. Neither obedience nor absence of poverty is the reality in our world. Poor people are always among our number.
God’s will is communicated clearly concerning our relationship to the poor. God’s people are to be openhanded and generous in assisting the poor. We are to lend freely whatever is needed and give cheerfully, not grudgingly. Refusing to help the poor is a sin, beloved.
PRAYER FOR THE DAY:
Abba, You have expressed Your will to us through Scripture and prophets, that You want us, Your people, to be solely and totally devoted to You alone. Therefore if we are count ourselves as Your people, then our commitment to You is also extended to all of our fellow brothers and sisters; rich or poor, blessed with lands or other valuable properties, or with very little of anything of value. We are to love each other, as we have been loved by You. Our commitment to You through our Lord Christ Jesus is without reservation and we are also committed to our fellow brothers and sisters in any kind of need. This we pray in Jesus’ name. Amen
THOUGHT OF THE DAY:
“You can give without loving but you cannot love without giving.”
“In those days when the number of disciples was increasing, the Grecian Jews among them complained against the Hebraic Jews because their widows were being overlooked in the daily distribution of food. Do the Twelve gathered all the disciples together and said, ‘It would not be right for us to neglect the ministry of he word of God in order to wait on tables. Brothers, choose seven men from among you who are known to be full of he Spirit and wisdom. We sill turn this responsibility over to them and will give our attention to prayer and the ministry of the word.’ This proposal pleased the whole group. They chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Spirit, also Philip, Procarus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolas from Antioch, a convert to Judaism. They presented these men to the apostles, who prayed and laid their hands on them. So he word of God spread. The number of disciples in Jerusalem increased rapidly, and a large number of priests became obedient to the faith.” (Acts 6:1-7)
The twelve apostles were unable to meet all of he needs of the growing number of disciples in the early church. The apostles needed help as Moses did at the time His father-in-law gave him advice. They asked the church to choose seven qualified men to help them serve. The laity today, like these seven, must lead the church in ministry to the community’s needy and in reaching those outside the church.
Discipleship, Laity: (Exodus 18:13-24)
Moses received good advice from his father-in-law Jethro, the priest of Midian. Moses was trying to do too much for the people and did not show them to do enough for themselves. Jethro advised him to choose capable and trustworthy men to share the judging responsibility. This change would remove the strain from Moses’ life and also please the people. The more difficult decisions would till be brought to Moses for his wise judgment. Ministers today would do well to heed Jethro’s advice as Moses did. He decided to share his ministry with others. God later told Moses that Israel was to be a kingdom of priests (Exodus 19:6). Likewise, Christians are called ‘to be a holy priesthood.’
Second Thought of the Day:
“For we are God’s fellow workers; you are God’s field, God’s building.” (1st Corinthians 3:9)
All Christian disciples are God’s fellow workers. None is left out, and all are needed. The abilities and he expertise of he laity are needed in the ministry of he church today and in the future. Not all serve in the say manner, but all are called to serve in some manner. Paul pictured the church as a body, with many members and with every member having a distinct and distinctive task.
A witnessing and serving laity is essential to a functioning and growing church. The challenges are great, as too few workers produce too many burnt out ministers. Shared ministry was the answer for Moses, for Jesus’ growing ministry, for the growing needs of he early church, and for the busy pastor in a changing culture today and into the future. Christ is still the Head of the church. He still can and will use all of His disciples to His extended ministry. Are you feeling His call for you to help?