Thursday, March 10, 2016

March 10 - Luke 21

Today's reading in our daily plan is Luke 21. 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?)
  • The story of the widow's offering makes it clear that Jesus doesn't care how much money you give to the church; he cares more about your heart's motivation when giving. The rich might have given large amounts of money, but it was given out of their comfort; a "large" offering may only have been an extremely tiny percentage of what they could have given.  The poor widow, on the other hand, gave only two coins, but they was all she had.  This was true sacrifice. 
  •  Many Bible scholars believe that there are two overlapping interpretations of verses 5-33:
  1. Jesus was referring to a literal event that happened many years later in 70 AD, when the Roman Empire squashed an Israeli uprising, resulting in the destruction of the Temple. 
  2. He was also speaking of when he will come back to earth someday. The Bible teaches that Jesus is coming again, this time not as a human, but as God in all his glory, to end the world as we know it.
  • It could be easy to look at Jesus' discussion of the end of the world and be filled with fear. But Jesus says not to worry, because he promises that those who are persecuted will be given the wisdom needed to handle their adversaries. 

SO WHAT? (What are the underlying principles?)
  • God wants more than our pocketbooks; he wants our hearts. Our financial giving, and everything else we do, is just a symbol of our faithfulness to God.

NOW WHAT? (How will you personally apply this passage?)
  • When do you find yourself failing to trust God and stay focused on him? When that happens, we need to:
    • Confess what we’ve done (or failed to do) to God and someone close to us.
    • Ask for forgiveness.
    • Commit to being changed by God into the person he made us to be.