Jesus’ Destructive Agenda

FEBRUARY 22

MATTHEW 5:17_I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill.

There was hardly anything destructive about Jesus’ earthly life. He came to heal the sick, give hope to the destitute, set demonic captives free, raise the dead, and above all else, freely give eternal life. His earthly purpose from beginning to end was mercy and love.

However, He did have one destructive agenda – hypocrisy. This would be hypocrisy among the God followers, salt that’s been contaminated with arrogance and lust, and lost its savor. Lights that shine only to bring self-glory. Those were things for which Jesus showed zero tolerance. 

He did not hesitate to call the guilty appropriate names, and in one instance physically remove their presence from the temple.

To destroy the law or prophets was far from Jesus’ purpose. He made it clear He was their fulfillment. The balance Jesus brought between the judgment of the Old Testament and the mercy of the New Testament was something Jesus alone could achieve.

To have too much of one and not enough of the other is destructive. Salt and light require the perfect balance of each.

PRAYER

Righteous Jesus, Help me to never fall into hypocrisy. Make me aware if I’m heading in that direction and re-direct my steps. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.

 Christ balances judgment and mercy—Praise Him!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            

The Great Balancer

FEBRUARY 20

MATTHEW 5:17_Think not that I am come to destroy the law…

Jesus is many things and all of them are perfection. One thing He does best is balance. Jesus balances the scales better than anyone. The primary reason is because Jesus is balance – it is the crux of His being. 

Jesus’ ministry was not meant to destroy the Law. He makes that clear. That does not mean He did not make changes. Jesus’ death made obsolete the necessity of animal sacrifices. His death also did away with the Holy of Holies. Jesus is the door for all to come into His Father’s presence. 

Jesus fulfills all the laws – by who He is.

A salty disciple never dismisses the Old Testament. To be a Jesus follower is not a New Testament practice. It is a Bible practice. Because you do not find the name Jesus in the Old Testament does not mean He is not there.  As the Creator, Jesus was present from the beginning. As a New Testament Rabbi, Jesus taught the Law. He did not come to destroy it.

Jesus came to balance the Law because Jesus is the balance of judgment and mercy.

PRAYER

Creator God, Please open my eyes to see, my ears to hear, and my heart to receive the truths of the Bible. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen. 

Christ is the Creator—He created me!

A Two Way Street

FEBRUARY 17

MATTHEW 5:16_Let your light shine before men…

The saltier a disciple, the greater your love.

The greater your love, the more darkness you see.

The more darkness you see, the greater your desire to overcome it.

The greater your desire to overcome darkness, the more you want to shine your light.

The more your light shines, the more you desire a larger candle.

Waiting on God is never easy. He alone knows the beginning and the end. His timing is perfect. Sometimes God’s calling may seem impossible. But that’s exactly who He is – The God of the Impossible. You will never know the impossibilities God can conquer if you’ve never faced any.

As you wait, focus on the job at hand – let your light so shine before men. Your job is to shine for the people God has placed around you … at home, school, work, church, organizations, and community.

Shining your light is a two way street. All those people mentioned need your light and you need theirs. There is no happenstance as to who the people are in your life – God put you together for a purpose.

When God lights your candle – let it shine!

   PRAYER

Dear God, Thank you for all the people You designed for my life. Help me grow from the light they give and help me give them light. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.                                    

Christ lights me from others—He lights them from me!

To Know Jesus

JANUARY 1

MATTHEW 5:1_And seeing the multitudes…

Jesus sees multitudes. That’s an awful lot of people! Bigger than a crowd!

Several instances in Jesus’ life have prepared Him for the multitudes. It is obvious He has been born. To know Jesus you must take a look at His birth. Talk about unconventional! Talk about amazing! Conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of a virgin?

To know Jesus you must also get to know the God of the Impossible.

Jesus’ birth was questioned, ridiculed, and scorned. He grew up with that – a part of daily life. Being honored and acknowledged as the Son of God was not a part of His daily life. 

So, if you were not born in accordance with the status quo, don’t let it depress you – it is not something you caused or can change. Besides, you share very good company. Jesus is an overcomer. He can help you become one as well.

Throughout this year you will learn a lot about how God planned life and His views on things like marriage. God’s plan is perfect. It can save you unnecessary hurts in life.

There is power in living according to God’s plan. 

PRAYER

Dear Heavenly Father, Help me to be sensitive to the pain of others and to be careful about decisions I make.  In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.

Christ loves me—Unconditionally!

There Was An Almost

OCTOBER 15

MATTHEW 7:11_If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children…

God loves everyone, the entire world. So much so that He let His own Son suffer and die for the world. 

God wants righteousness and goodness to reign supreme—as it did for a brief time in the Garden of Eden—pure perfection not only in people, but in all nature. But there was an almost in that perfection. When the almost won the battle over free will, everything changed—but God didn’t. He’s still just, He still has all power, and He’s still God of the Impossible.

I believe Jesus in His infinite power and unsurpassed love, works every day to restore as much of the Garden experience as possible in our fallen world. Every time He transforms a heart and gives it the ability to become salt and light, He’s made some restoration. It will take a new heaven and a new earth to bring full restoration.

When God uses evil people in ways that result in good for His children, He is exercising His fatherly powers. God wants fathers to do good to and for their children. Unfortunately, there are those whose fathers genuinely neglect, abuse, and abandon them.

God has a plan for those children as well, Psalm 27:10 (KJV), “When my father and my mother forsake me, then the Lord will take me up.”

PRAYER

Jesus Lord, Only You can transform—we all need it. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.                                                                                                          

Christ’s love is perfection—I want to love like that!