Thursday, February 4, 2016

Daily Devotional: February 4

Week 2, Day 4, The Gospel According to Matthew, Chapter 9

Chapter Nine picks up where eight left off--more tales of Jesus performing miraculous signs. Matthew also includes in this chapter the story of his own acceptance of Christ's offer. Each story in chapter nine hangs on the faith of one or more people. Personal faith seems to be the catalyst for the movement of the Spirit in these stories. Personal faith is the thing that makes it all happen.

Do you believe I am able to do this?

In this chapter we see the amazing story of the friends whose faith provided their paralyzed friend an opportunity to be healed. We see the blind men asking for mercy and healing, and being given both. We see Jesus heal all the people whose faith made it possible.

Do you believe I am able to do this?

We also see Christ "moved with compassion" for the crowds. That phrase in English isn't quite right. The Greek phrase being translated there (σπλαγχνίζομαι or splagchnizomai) is more closer to "His stomach turned with compassion." He hurt for people deep in the bottom of His gut. He loved people with everything He had.

Do you believe I am able to do this?

Jesus acted out of this splagchnizomai. His every move came from this unique compassion He felt towards people. How often do we have our stomach turned with compassion? How often do we allow ourselves to feel a level of connection with the downtrodden people around us that it makes us sick to think of how mistreated they are? How much faith do we have that God is able do something about the injustice in our world.

Do you believe I am able to do this?

Spend time praying as Jesus asked His followers to pray at the end of chapter 8.

Send out workers into the harvest.
Send out workers.
Send me out.
Yes, Lord. I believe you are able to do this.

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About Drew

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A follower of Jesus, trying to build myself and others up from the inside out.