Daily Devotions from The Word Of God… From the heart of Ed Algreen

Archive for September, 2013

Is Your Church Following Jesus’ Example?

Scripture: Luke 15.  

OBSERVATION
(Key verses)

Luke 15:1-2 (NLT)

1 Tax collectors and other notorious sinners often came to listen to Jesus teach.

2 This made the Pharisees and teachers of religious law complain that he was associating with such sinful people—even eating with them!

APPLICATION
(How Can I apply what God is saying here to my life today?)

This is a chapter often preached on because of the story of the Prodical Son, but God really spoke to me this morning from a slightly different angle. Right at the very beginning of the chapter we are told that Jesus’ teaching seemed to have attracted notorious sinners. Just imagine, these are the folk that we strive to find ways to get them into our churches, but have such a challenge in trying to find the right programs or the right giveaways or the right meals to attract them. Now stop for a moment and consider that if we were to be like Jesus, and if we were to follow in His footsteps, these are the folk that we should be gearing our ministries towards, and not necessarily the influential in our membership, or not even those that tend to give us gifts or tickle our ears with encouraging words. Now, in verse 2 we find the real church today, for I assure you that if our church leadership concentrated heavily on the poor, the needy, the down-trodden, the unsaved, or hung out in areas where the notoriously sinful people hung out, our church membership would have a hay day whining and complaining and calling pastor and his team some real choice names. Can’t you hear us say, “I sure hope he thinks about who pays his salary”! Friends, it is so unfortunate that our churches have become an entertainment center for our pious Christians, catering to their every whine or complaint. If we truly follow Jesus’ example, our church services would be filled with more folk that need the Lord, than those who know Him but feel an obligation to tradition in being dressed up and in church service so all our friends could see how ‘religious’ we are. I wonder how we would honestly answer the question today, if asked “How are you following Jesus’ example in your church today”?

PRAYER
(What I will ask of God, in order for me to properly apply His Word to my life)

Lord Jesus, please forgive us for the unfortunate path we have taken in our churches today, for it seems like we have become more of an entertainment show, or theater for the entertainment of our attendees. Jesus taught in a way that attracted sinners, I pray that our churches will place that as priority in their planning sessions, so that sinners will be invited, welcomed and accepted in our churches to listen to the Word of God preached. Help us to individually get excited about inviting our non-Christian friends to church with us, and may they find a place of refuge as they attend. As we see Christians trying to build relationships with non-Christians, please help us to not be judgmental, but instead admire the example You set before us in all that You have taught us in this chapter of Luke. Lord, may we be more like You every day. Lord, may our churches follow more of Your example every day.

 

**Words underlined may be a hyperlink to a song that God laid on my heart while sharing this devotional this morning. Click it and be blessed by the song, like I was when I listened to it! …… I would be overjoyed to have the opportunity to pray with you about a need in your life that may, or may not have been highlighted by this Nugget today. Why not drop me a note and tell me about it? You may email me at:
nuggetsfromgodsword@yahoo.com
**

Scripture: Luke 14.  

OBSERVATION
(Key verses)

Luke 14:16-20 (NLT)

16 Jesus replied with this story: “A man prepared a great feast and sent out many invitations. 17 When the banquet was ready, he sent his servant to tell the guests, ‘Come, the banquet is ready.’

18 But they all began making excuses. One said, ‘I have just bought a field and must inspect it. Please excuse me.’ 19 Another said, ‘I have just bought five pairs of oxen, and I want to try them out. Please excuse me.’ 20 Another said, ‘I now have a wife, so I can’t come.’

APPLICATION
(How Can I apply what God is saying here to my life today?)

In Jesus’ story, many people turned down the invitation to the banquet because the timing was inconvenient. We, too, may resist or delay responding to God’s invitation, and our excuses may sound reasonable—work duties, family responsibilities, financial needs, or other reasons. Nevertheless, God’s invitation is the most important event in your life, no matter how inconveniently it may be timed. Are you making excuses to avoid responding to God’s call? Jesus reminds us that the time will come when God will pull his invitation and offer it to others—then it will be too late to get into the banquet.

PRAYER
(What I will ask of God, in order for me to properly apply His Word to my life)

Dear Jesus, thank You for providing a way for us to enter into your kingdom. Thank You for thinking enough of me, a sinner saved only by Your grace, to love me, to accept me and invite me to sit at Your table of mercy. Lord, as I consider the span of my life, who am I that a King, the King of all kings, would sacrifice His only Son so that I might live eternally with Him? Thank You for inviting even me to Your banquet and giving me the joy of Your salvation. But for Your love Lord, I would still be lost in sin with no hope for life in heaven with You. Thank You Jesus for loving me this much!

 

**Words underlined may be a hyperlink to a song that God laid on my heart while sharing this devotional this morning. Click it and be blessed by the song, like I was when I listened to it! …… I would be overjoyed to have the opportunity to pray with you about a need in your life that may, or may not have been highlighted by this Nugget today. Why not drop me a note and tell me about it? You may email me at:
nuggetsfromgodsword@yahoo.com
**

Tag Cloud