Monday, January 13, 2014

January 13, 2014 … Beyond Concern - Love

Daily Berry Patch Devotions in 2014 - Day 13

Devotional Song: Go to this link  – again today to hear Steve Green singing People Need the Lord, … which laments that we see so many in our lives who need the Lord everyday but we are unable or unwilling to share our testimony of redemption and salvation with them.

Highlight Passage #1 – NLT: 1st Thessalonians 3: 6-8 … 
6 But now that Timothy has come to us from you, and brought us good news of your faith and love, and that you always have good remembrance of us, greatly desiring to see us, as we also to see you — 7 therefore, brethren, in all our affliction and distress we were comforted concerning you by your faith. 8 For now we live, if you stand fast in the Lord. 
Highlight Context - NKJV: 1st Thessalonians, Chapter 3… GO TO THIS LINK … 

Reference Passage #1: 1st Thessalonians 2: 17-20 … [NKJV] … Go to this link … [Concern for well-being of the church.] …

Reference Passage #2: Acts 17: 1-10 … [NKJV] … Go to this link … [Paul’s love for those in Thessalonica was real and deep even after he was forced to leave them. ] …

Reference Passage #3: 1st Corinthians : 3: 6 … [NKJV] … [Paul’s love and concern was also in the context of how others had come to know Christ as Savior and Lord. ] …  
6 I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the increase.

  Reference Passage #3: Matthew 16: 18 … [NKJV] … [Jesus teaching on His will for the church to reach out to/for the lost. ] …  
18 And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it.

My Journal for Today: Have you ever created something significant, perhaps a work of art, the building of a home, or maybe the shaping of a business which you had to leave behind in your life because you were called or led to move on to a newer territory of living? This had to have been the feelings of the Apostle Paul who had traveled through much of the known world in his day sharing the Gospel message and leaving behind converts as well as churches like those in Thessalonica, Philippi, or Colosse, which he had had a hand in building. Moving on to other areas, Paul, as documented in several of the passages above, showed concern, yes, even love, for many of those churches he had helped establish. And it had to be uplifting and heartening to learn, as Paul did about the church in Thessalonica, that many of those who were saved under his evangelical outreach were living strongly in their faith some years after their conversion.

At one in point Jesus’ ministry travels, when He came to an area of Caesarea Philippi, he engaged His disciples about who others thought He was (see the passage linked above in Matthew 16). And I’ve been to that area; and I took the attached photo of a cave mouth there where Jesus likely pointed toward referencing the Satanic cultists who were meeting there at the time; and Jesus gave His strong rebuke of those who were lured by false-teaching, telling His disciples that His church, once established on earth, would never be consumed by cultists (see Matthew 16: 18).

And yes, that truth, is encouraging in light of all those we encounter on a daily basis who are lost and will one day be in hell if God – through His church – cannot open their eyes to the truth of His gospel and the eternal reality of a faith-based relationship with Him in this life.

So, how many people will we encounter today who will one day be in Hell because we are unwilling to share our story of redemption and regeneration with them? My friend, as Steve Green sings in the powerful song linked above, People Need the Lord.

My Prayer for Today … Lord, give me Your divine appointment today as an opportunity to share what You have done in my life with others who need You saving grace as well. … Amen

Blogger Note: Everyday during this year, my daily devotional blogs are influenced by the reading and study of the online devotional blog entitled Our Daily Bread [TGIF], distributed online via email by RBC Ministries. If you GO TO THIS LINK  on the date of my blog, you’ll find a link to read the Our Daily Bread blogs; or you can subscribe to the blog via email at that site.

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