|Matthew 26:14-16 (NIV)|
|14 Then one of the Twelve—the one called Judas Iscariot—went to the chief priests 15 and asked, “What are you willing to give me if I deliver him over to you?” So they counted out for him thirty pieces of silver. 16 From then on Judas watched for an opportunity to hand him over.|
|Perhaps Judas is one of the most talked about disciples of Jesus, because of his betrayal of his Master, and all for just 30 pieces of silver. I wonder if the other disciples were 100% sold out to Jesus and never once betrayed Him. We will look deeper into our stance on Jesus and how sold out we are to the King of the universe, the holy Son of God.|
|It is so easy for us to criticize Judas for the bad boy that he was, in betraying his Master, our Lord, the only Son of God. However, I will share with you the meaning of that word ‘B E T R A Y A L’, because I believe that we easily slip into the shoes of Judas more often than we care to admit. The online Free Dictionary gives the following meaning to our ‘word of the day’: To be false or disloyal to: betrayed a cause; betray one’s spouse; | To divulge in a breach of confidence: betray a secret; | To make known unintentionally: Her hollow laugh betrayed her contempt for the idea; | To lead astray: deceive. After reading these meanings, I’m sure that another disciple comes to mind – Peter – when he was ‘disloyal’ to Jesus after His arrest and Peter, for fear of his own life, claimed to have ‘never known The Man’! But I really want us to take time in our meditation with the Lord today and ask Him to point out to us the opportunities that we ‘blow’ when, instead of witnessing about the miracles of the Lord, or boasting on the handiwork of our Maker, we fit into the expectations of those that we are in the company of. In doing this, those witnessing opportunities become times that we wish the person better luck next time, or perhaps ‘fate’ is just not on your side. The miraculous turn of events may become ‘you are one ‘lucky’ person, I wish that I could be that lucky. Another form of betrayal is when we shake the hand of our pastor, or teacher, and tell them how well they did, then another listener pulls us aside and shares how they will start going to another church because they could never get anything from the pastor/teacher’s lessons. Will you always stick to the same compliment you just gave to the leader, or will you betray them and go along with the listener who has a different twist on the lesson? Friends, remember that you will only get as much out of a lesson or sermon as you personally have invested into it. Did you bathe that leader in prayer that they might put self aside and clearly receive a word from the Lord that you and other listeners need to hear from God? Did you give that leader an extra boost of encouragement to let them know you had prayed for them before they taught? Friends, if we’re not careful, we could be doing a whole lot worse than Thomas. May the sincerity of your heart be evident to all those around you, and especially to God, who knows the innermost thoughts, words and deeds of each of us 24/7/365.|
|Precious Lord, please give us boldness today to declare the Lordship of Jesus Christ in as many ways as possible today. Too often we become like Thomas and change our witness, our story, our ‘colors’ to match that of the crowd that we are caught associating with. Lord, may we be found faithful in all walks of life. In fact, may we become stronger and even more vocal for You as we enter into the world where many do not have a relationship with You. Lord, may we always declare Your glory, Your honor, Your miracles, Your love, Your presence and Your ultimate Lordship over everything, regardless of the biggest, badest, most vocal objector in the crowd. May You never be forced to challenge us on having betrayed the precious Son of God – our Lord and our Savior. Instead, may You always be praised and honored in all walks of our life, each and every day, for Your glory alone. AMEN!|
|There are two more pages on my blog 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 this devotional, please click on 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. Words underlined in my blog could indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely to subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!|
Posts tagged ‘Peter’
SCRIPTURE Studied: Matthew 4
18 One day as Jesus was walking along the shore of the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers—Simon, also called Peter, and Andrew—throwing a net into the water, for they fished for a living.19 Jesus called out to them, “Come, follow me, and I will show you how to fish for people!”20 And they left their nets at once and followed him.21 A little farther up the shore he saw two other brothers, James and John, sitting in a boat with their father, Zebedee, repairing their nets. And he called them to come, too.22 They immediately followed him, leaving the boat and their father behind. Matt 4:18-22 (NLT)
APPLICATION (How Can I apply what God is saying here to my circumstances today?)
While this seems like a miraculous thing for Jesus to call these men from what they were doing, and especially for them to leave their secular jobs and follow Him, I believe that this also occurs today. We were created by God, and while our flesh strives to live in and enjoy the pleasures of this world, I believe that our inward soul longs to be with Jesus and live a life pleasing to Him while here on this earth. Unfortunately I believe that the latter is not possible until we accept that deep longing to accept Jesus as Lord of our life. We can always stop and think of what life could be like if we weren’t so stuck on pleasing others. It is so unfortunate that we try so hard to please our peers, our family, our friends, our co-workers, our boss, our pastor and then with whatever is left in us we try to please God. Friend why not try and do this in reverse order – surrender your heart to God, give Him 100% of your effort to please Him and follow His commands, then watch how easy it will be to see others accept you for who you are. A life surrendered to, committed to and following the commands of Jesus will result in a happy, satisfied, fulfilled life with a purpose and a goal oriented mindset that will be fixed on Jesus Christ. Oh that we will do just that this Christmas season – a time on our calendar that we dedicate to the One whose birthday is the whole purpose of Christmas.
PRAYER (With God’s help, what am I going to do differently today because He said it?)
Father, I rededicated myself anew to You this Christmas. I pray that You will direct me each and every day, especially during this busy time on my calendar. I pray that You will help me place my life in perspective – You first, and all else to follow as You direct. May I be deep into Your Word daily so that I may learn of and subsequently follow the plan You have designed for my life. May I be an influence to others, especially those that have not yet accepted You as Lord of their lives. Like Peter, Andrew, James and John, may I be obedient to Your call on my life and serve You willingly every day. Please touch the lives of all readers today that they too may first of all accept You as Lord, then submit their lives totally to You and Your service. You gave Your very best that very first ‘Christmas’, may we in turn give our very best to You this Christmas.