Thursday, March 7, 2013

Mar 7 - Luke 19

Today's reading in our daily plan is Luke 19. Take a moment to pray, asking God to speak to you from this passage. Then read, using the following notes and questions to help you get everything out of the passage.

SAY WHAT? (What is the passage saying?)
  • Zaccheaus would have been considered one of the most hated and sinful men in his town because he was a traitor, a Jew who had sided with the Romans and was taking money from the Jews to support the Roman army.
  • In verse 41 Jesus weeps as he looks over the city of Jerusalem because so many in the city reject God. Do you think Jesus may look over Las Vegas and weep because so many who live in our city are so far from him?
  • In the "triumphal entry" and the story where Jesus goes into the temple we see that everything is (or should be) about Jesus.

SO WHAT? (What are the underlying principles?)
  • The story of Zaccheaus teaches us that God is for the tax collectors -- the people who have rejected God and turned against the people who believe in him. God is a God of grace who loves us and will take us back no matter what. So no matter what you have done (or do), God's love for you is unconditional. This means you can come to God, whether it's the first time to start a relationship with him, or to pray after you read the Bible today. You are never outside the reach of God's grace.
  • In the parable of the ten minas we learn that we need to be responsible and use what God's given us to serve him, realizing that everything we have comes from him.

NOW WHAT? (How will you personally apply this passage?)
  • What sin keeps you from God? Is it something from your past, or a recurring sin from your present? Accept God's forgiveness for it and go to him. In fact, that sin may be the thing you need to talk to God about the most.
  • What do you have that you're not using to serve God? Your money? Your abilities? Your relationships? Your personality? Commit today to using everything God has given you for him. Find a way to put that commitment into practice this week.