“Now to him who is able to establish you by my gospel and the proclamation of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery hidden for long ages past, but now revealed and made known through the prophetic writings by the command of the eternal God, so that all nations might believe and obey him—-to the only wise God be glory forever through Jesus Christ! Amen.” (Romans 16:25-27)
Paul wrote to correct and challenge churches, but he let them know the ultimate goal was to bring glory to God. Thus, he frequently included in his letters doxologies, or statements of praise of God’s glory. Doxology is a form of prayer exalting and praising the essential nature of Almighty God.
PRAYER FOR THE DAY:
Precious Abba, today lift our hands to honor God for our abundant blessings bestowed upon us from Him. Praise is the best way we can honor our Lord for our relationship with Him. It is good and right to lift our voices to praise the One God that we serve. Today also pray those who are suffering in body, mind, and/or spirit, with friends, family, for those we don’t know, especially the people in Ukraine, as they are fighting for their very lives and way of life. Amen
THOUGHT OF THE DAY:
“Your heart is happiest when it’s beating for others..”
“And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith.” (1st Corinthians 15:14)
Simply put, without Christ’s resurrection we have nothing to preach. The bodily resurrection of Christ is the source for our resurrection hope and thus for our preaching, as well.
“The God of Christianity stands in sharp contrast to the gods of the nations of the ancient world. The God revealed to us in the mighty events of the Bible is a living God, not an empty idea of a human creation set up as an idol. As such, God enters into personal relationships with His people, hears our prayers, moves to help us and cares for us individually. The missionaries sent from Thessalonicia were equal to those sent out from Rome, and Paul was model they looked at for faith, hope, and the Risen Christ, when they went out from their churches to give testimony to so many others. The gods of the ancient world were made of wood or stone and did not ever talk with their followers. God talks to us through our prayers and gives us guidance through His Holy Spirit, that we may be accepted as His own people. ” (1st Thessalonians 1:8-10)
I do not intend to elevate Paul to God’s level, but it is very clear that he really did have an encounter with Christ on the Road to Emmaus and it wasn’t a momentary encounter, it completely changed his life from that moment until he died. Every day, he sought in prayer to know God’s will for him that moment, that day, and in the right manner that he would be understood and that the Gospel message he delivered, was real and true and waiting for them, as it waits for us all. I had heard that message since I was a little boy, but one day, I heard it in a way I simply cannot describe, beloved, it was a voice calling me to come and deliver the message for Him to all I encountered, for the rest of my life. Until that day, I had never understood the message as it was taught to me most of my life, but suddenly, it was impossible to turn away, and I had to share the message with urgency. I knew in that moment, my life was changing forever and all I could do was to cry with tears of joy and praise His Holy Name. I pray you have an experience similar to this, but if not, get on your knees and asked Him into your life from this day forward.
2ND THOUGHT OF THE DAY:
“After John was put in prison, Jesus went into Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God. ‘The time has come,’ he said. ‘The kingdom of God is near. Repent and believe’ the good news!” (Mark 1:14-15)
Jesus is the supreme pattern of gospel proclamation. Upon the imprisonment of John the Baptist, He stepped into the spotlight to preach. He announced that the kingdom of God was at hand. People were to enter that kingdom through repentance and faith. As Jesus demonstrated, the announcement of eternal truth and the call for personal commitment. All true proclamation follows this pattern. Proclamation is not whispering, beloved, it is to be delivered with a raised voice for all to hear.