Friday, January 24, 2014

365 Days with God - Day 35: His last words

I'm giving myself a challenge. Read the Bible each day for a whole year, following the ESV Study Guide 1-year plan. Each day, I will post whatever God has revealed to me in His Word, and how it is changing me. A friend of mine once said that nothing has changed her life as much as reading the bible each day - and I'm excited for how this will change me. Join me on an adventure into the heart of God - and day by day, we can learn more about who He is and what that means to us!

- Andy Catts

Day 35, January 24, 2014
Readings: Psalm 34, Genesis 31, 2 Chronicles 8, Luke 24

What would you say if you were about to leave everyone you love and care about? I'm willing to bet that it wouldn't be flippant, or insignificant. It would be meaningful.

And what if you were saying goodbye to a group of people you had mentored? Perhaps your children? If you had one thing to tell them, what would it be?

Lucky for us, Jesus had just such an event with His disciples. And he shared with them his final advice, his last charge, their mission going forward:

Then he opened their minds to understand the Scriptures, and said to them, "Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead, and that repentance and forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things." (Luke 24:45-48)

Friends, if we call Jesus our Lord, we are his disciples. And his final words are very clear: "repentance and forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in his name to all nations."

Are we doing this? Are we listening, understanding and obeying the mission of the King? There are many good things to do in this world - love your family, serve others, social justice for the oppressed - but there is only one mission that is above all. Proclaim repentance and forgiveness of sins. Bring the restorative work of Jesus to all people.

And this is not exclusionary of other things. We can, and should, share the gospel while loving others, growing in the knowledge of the gospel, and alleviating the oppression on the poor and widows. But the gospel is paramount. What use is love if we don't share the ultimate, saving love of Christ? What good is knowledge of the gospel if we keep it to ourselves? How are the widow and the orphan saved if they are only saved on earth and not in eternity? 

We are Christ's hands and feet on earth. He has called us to love and serve others. But in all things, we should proclaim the good news of Jesus. None of Jesus' disciples are excluded from this calling. The way and manner in which we share the gospel may be different - but we are all called to intentionally share the gospel. To restore the world. Have you answered the call?

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