Friday, November 30, 2012

DAY 235 - (English podcast click here)

DAY 235 - Is Loving God And His People A Theory Or A Reality? (請按此處收聼廣東話Cantonese podcast click here)

Today's Reading: Matthew 22: 34-46

**For a simple and good way of Daily Devotion method please click this link: Subject Shifting Devotion.pdf.
Please click this link to read Matthew 22: 34-46

Bible Study

     This passage is the conclusion of the past five days. 
     We had two passages calling us to repent, the third one challenges us whether we have repented, the forth one helps us to know that if we really have repented then we should be able to know what to give to the world, and what to give to God. Then yesterday-the fifth one, we got another challenge that if we really have repented, then we are the living having a living relationship with God. 

     Today, Jesus concludes the message by telling us that repentance brings us to be the living having a living relationship with God and we can live out the essence of God's commandments to love God and His people.

     Knowing to love God and His people is not difficult, but to live it out is a life time effort.  N.T. Wright says:
     But did people actually keep these commandments?  Jesus has already spoken, in chapter 15, of the need for the heart to be renewed so that people will produce words and deeds which are appropriate, rather than making them impure.  His challenge in the Sermon on the Mount was that the heart should be renewed, not just that the outward actions should conform with the proper standard.
     But how could this be done?  Even those of us who have spent our whole lives trying to follow Jesus and live by his grace and love know that the heart doesn't seem to get renewed all in one go.  Many, many bits of darkness and impurity still lurk in its depths, and sometimes take a lot of work, prayer and counsel to dig out and replace with the love which we all agree should really be there.
     Once more, what Jesus says here about loving God, and loving one another, only makes sense when we set it within Matthew's larger gospel picture, of Jesus dying for the sins of the world, and rising again with the message of new life. That's when these commandment begin to come into their own: when they are seen not as orders to be obeyed in our own strength, but as invitations and promises to a new way of life in which, bit by bit, hatred and pride can be left behind and love can become a reality. 

     So, is loving God and His people a theory or reality to you? If it is not a theory but a reality, how real can that be? 

Let's have a time to be still and give the Holy Spirit space to speak through the passage of scripture we have just read. Offer this time up to Jesus as you listen to him, while listening to "Gabriel's Oboe"

Spiritual Journal

     What I heard from Jesus today is: Is loving God and His people a theory or a reality?

     What I got from Jesus is a reality check again of whether we are living each day in a kind of theory by putting on a mask to pretend that we are good disciple of Jesus or we really can live out loving God and His people.

     What have you been doing lately to tell yourself the true picture whether loving God and His people is a theory or a reality? 

Dear Lord Jesus,
Lead us to really live out loving you and your people. In Jesus name we pray. Amen.

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