DATE WRITTEN: Sunday, 2021-02-07
WRITTEN AT: Avon Park, FL
BIBLE REFERENCE: Matthew 12:9-13
TRANSLATION: Contemporary English Version (CEV)
BIBLE TEXT: 9 Jesus left and went into one of the Jewish meeting places, 10 where there was a man whose hand was crippled. Some Pharisees wanted to accuse Jesus of doing something wrong, and they asked him, “Is it right to heal someone on the Sabbath?”
11 Jesus answered, “If you had a sheep that fell into a ditch on the Sabbath, wouldn’t you lift it out? 12 People are worth much more than sheep, and so it is right to do good on the Sabbath.” 13 Then Jesus told the man, “Hold out your hand.” The man did, and it became as healthy as the other one.
OBSERVATION: I believe that people are waiting around the corner to test us and see what we’re made of. They did it to Jesus, and they set out to kill Him. When their suspicions become a reality in our situations, I wonder what our ‘friends’ hope to achieve? As we meditate on this Scripture today, let us become more aware of those around us, but more so, let us be ready at all times to obey God’s commands so that He might achieve His perfect will in their lives.
APPLICATION: I know you might wonder why on earth should we be concerned about what others think of us and our decisions. But just looking at the example of Jesus, we could see that His actions ultimately led to His crucifixion, even though He never did any criminal acts. It’s interesting, for people will not think twice about an unbeliever saying or doing anything, for they expect that person to follow the ‘anything goes’ attitude of the world. However, when it comes to Christians, we become their focus, as the world wants to see if we could truly live up to their expectations of a Christian. But who are we here to please? If we truly focus our attention on being an image of Jesus Christ, and seek His help in directing our path, then we will prove to Him that our commitment is real and our intent is to live like Him, even under extreme circumstances here on earth. Friends, I am convinced that Christians live in ‘glass houses’, for we are being monitored by all those that we come into contact with. Pleasing God and following His commands, will make us so different to the rest of the world that our friends will begin to watch carefully to try and conclude what is ‘wrong’ with us! However, when this world takes its toll on our friends, and they have developed proven faith in us, I believe that they will then turn to us for an introduction to our Lord, our Leader and our Savior. While still here on this earth, we will mess up. Please know that the Jesus we asked to lead our life has not deserted us, but rather, He stands with outstretched hands to help us back up. Our friends might take a turn at mocking us for not being perfect, but I believe that they will also carefully watch how we rebound, to know whose we are and where our strength actually comes from. If we are to truly be like our Master, then we can see where He never wavered from His dependence on the Father. He knew that it was OK to heal the man in our Scripture today, but He knew it was important to also handle the Pharisees in a way that would not give them reason to question His heart for ministry. Sure they questioned, and of course they used the incident to convict Jesus of breaking their man made laws. But Jesus didn’t come to break God’s laws, even if the wicked leaders chose to hold Him guilty of breaking one of their man made laws, and personal convictions. So where are you at today dear friends? Will the crowd (the ‘Pharisees’ of today’s society) find you guilty of being just like Jesus and strongly following His commands? It might be the only thing that will truly minister to them!
PRAYER: Thank You Lord Jesus for standing strong in Your convictions and teachings to the Pharisees on the importance of doing the right thing at the right time. Surely You see the ‘Pharisees’ who are watching and judging us also, precious Lord, so I humbly ask You to prepare us for doing and saying the right thing. May You be prominent in our actions and may the ‘crowd’ recognize You in us above all else. May we be much more concerned about spoiling our witness for You, than our own reputation. The world needs You more than anything else. Help us Lord to reflect You in everything we do and say at all times. AMEN!
FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog at https://NuggetsFromGodsWord.org that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading or listening to this devotional, please go to the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and see all of my posts, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!