Tag: preach the kingdom

Proclaiming the Kingdom of God

Scripture reading for March 23rd: Deuteronomy 15-18, Psalm 115, Luke 9

Luke 9:1-6 “And He called the twelve together and gave them power and authority over all demons and to cure diseases, and He sent them out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal. And He said to them, “Take nothing for your journey, no staff, nor bag, nor bread, nor money; and do not have two tunics. And whatever house you enter, stay there, and from there depart. And wherever they do not receive you, when you leave that town shake off the dust from your feet as a testimony against them.” And they departed and went through the villages, preaching the Gospel and healing everywhere.”

Through Moses, God spoke prophetically of a coming Prophet, like Moses, Who would speak all God’s Word! The Words of God that were spoken would be the basis of judgment on those who heard but did not receive or heed. When Jesus sent out His disciples, He gave them power and authority to preach the good news and heal the sick and demon possessed. They were to stay where welcomed. If anyone would not receive them, they were to shake out the dust as a witness against them. God’s love and faithfulness bring glory to His Name and Word!

Deuteronomy 18:17-19 “And the Lord said to me, ‘They are right in what they have spoken. I will raise up for them a Prophet like you from among their brothers. And I will put My Words in His mouth, and He shall speak to them all that I command Him. And whoever will not listen to My Words that He shall speak in My Name, I Myself will require it of him.””

Prayer: Father God, thank You for fulfilling Your Word in sending Jesus Christ, the Word made flesh! Thank You for the calling to preach the Gospel and heal, calling all people to repent and enjoy salvation and healing and eternal life. May Your Name be glorified for Your great love and faithfulness to save the repentant and judge those who reject Your Word!

Psalm 115 :1 “Not to us, O Lord, not to us, but to Your Name give glory, for the sake of your steadfast love and Your faithfulness.”

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Shake the Dust Off!

Scripture reading for January 12th: Matthew 10:1-23, Psalms 9:1-10, Proverbs 3:1-2

Jesus first taught His disciples to go out and preach to those who were lost in Israel.  “As you go, preach this message: ‘The kingdom of heaven is near.’  Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons.  Freely you have received, freely give.” (Matthew 10:7-8)  They were empowered with authority to take the message of repentance to the Jewish people and to demonstrate God’s willingness and ability to heal and deliver.  They had not bought these gifts, but had freely received the power from Jesus and must freely give to all who would receive.  They were also to travel light and live off the gifts and hospitality of those that they would preach to.  Each worker was worthy of his keep!

Jesus knew that not everyone would receive them with hospitality.  Some would reject the message and maybe even mistreat these disciples.  He told them so up front so that they would not be discouraged or surprised by the treatment.  In fact, Jesus gave them some practical advice for dealing with those who would not receive: “If anyone will not welcome you or listen to your words, shake the dust off your feet when you leave that home or town.  I tell you the truth, it will be more bearable for Sodom and Gomorrah on the day of judgment than for that town.  I am sending you out like sheep among wolves.  Therefore, be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves.” (Matthew 10:14-16)

When we share the gospel of Jesus Christ with people, we are doing more than we may realize.  Every time we share, God is offering eternal life to those that hear.  They are accountable for their actions.  If they refuse the messengers, they are really rejecting God and bring the eternal judgment of God’s wrath on themselves.  If they hear and accept, they bring God’s favor and and eternal life into their being.  Jesus told the disciples that they were to shake the dust off their feet upon leaving the homes or town where they were not welcomed.  That dust would be a witness against those who rejected the Lord’s messengers.  They were not to waste time trying to argue or debate because they must go to others who would receive.  Let’s think about this the next time we share the gospel!

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