Wisdom – March 31, 2019

“For the foolishness of God is wiser than man’s wisdom . . .”
1 Corinthians 1:25

Wisdom


Daily Devotion – March 31, 2019

Devotion based on 1 Corinthians 1:25

See series: Devotions

Have you ever noticed that most people spend an entire lifetime trying to get smarter? Virtually everyone attends preschool, kindergarten, elementary school, junior high, and high school. Many people continue on to college, and others gain their master’s degree and even their doctorate. Companies insist that their employees go to continuing education classes. Others take summer or night classes to learn something they have always wanted to learn. Each of us will have dozens of teachers by the time we are finished…and really, we are never finished learning, are we?

It certainly is a blessing in our country that education is readily available. We honor God when we study hard and make the most of our ability. But there is much more to wisdom than books, report cards, and grade point averages. 1 Corinthians 1:25 says: “The foolishness of God is wiser than man’s wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than man’s strength.”

God’s wisdom is much higher than anything we learn in school. In the Scriptures, God reveals who he is and what he has done. But many consider God’s wisdom to be foolishness. That’s because it isn’t logical for Jesus to be true man and true God. It doesn’t make sense for God to die willingly for mankind. It isn’t rational for human beings not to fear death. None of these things are logical, sensible, or rational for unbelievers; such things are foolishness to them. Only those in whom the Holy Spirit lives by faith can know and believe the wisdom of God. So, by God’s grace, we accept the truth that Jesus is the God-man who sacrificed himself to save us from death and give us eternal life. Believing such “foolishness” makes us wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.

Prayer:
Holy Spirit of God, convince my hearth through your Word that what you say is true, as foolish as it may seem. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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Examples – March 30, 2019

These things happened to them as examples and were written down as warnings for us, on whom the fulfillment of the ages has come.
1 Corinthians 10:11

Examples


Daily Devotion – March 30, 2019

Devotion based on 1 Corinthians 10:11

See series: Devotions

General George Marshall served as President Roosevelt’s Chief of Staff during World War II, and later served as Secretary of State. Historians rate him as one of the most capable military leaders the United States has ever produced. He also knew the value of a good example.

It is said that, early in his career, General Marshall took command of the Infantry School at Fort Benning, Georgia. When he arrived, he found the post to be in a run-down condition. He could have chewed out his lower-ranking officers. He could have barked out orders. Instead, he did something else. He got out his own paintbrushes and lawn equipment and went to work on his personal quarters. The officers and enlisted men quickly took notice. They began doing the same thing throughout the post. Before long, Fort Benning was a better place; all because of a good example.

In the Bible you and I have the message of what the Son of God has done to wash us clean of our sin, purchase eternal life on our behalf, and bring us into his family through faith in him.

On those same pages of Scripture, the Lord has also given us examples of real lives lived by real people. They are examples for us to think about, study, and discuss. Many examples are warnings of things the Lord wants us to avoid. But there are good examples, too. Examples that the Lord wants us to learn, notice, and follow.

The greatest example of all, of course, is Jesus himself. Go to the Scriptures. Watch him. Observe what he says and does. Give his example some thought. And follow.

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, thank you for the full forgiveness I have through faith in you. Send me to your Word. Help me learn from the example you give me. Empower me to follow your lead. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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One More Year – March 29, 2019

“‘Sir,’ the man replied, ‘leave it alone for one more year, and I’ll dig around it and fertilize it. If it bears fruit next year, fine! If not, then cut it down.’”
Luke 13:8-9

One More Year


Daily Devotion – March 29, 2019

Devotion based on Luke 13:8-9

See series: Devotions

Spring is on its way in the Northern Hemisphere. In some places, farmers and gardeners have already begun planting their crops or tending their trees, hoping that they will produce a crop of delicious fruit later in the season.

But what if they don’t? What if no tomatoes grow on the tomato plants, no apples or peaches appear on the trees? The owner might check for pests and disease and treat them if he can. He might make sure that the plants are getting the right amount of water. He might check the soil and feed the plants with fertilizer or other nutrients.

But if that doesn’t work, he has a decision to make. Does he let the plant grow and settle for a little shade or a splash of green? Or does he cut it down or dig it up to get rid of it?

That was the question the man faced in a story Jesus told. His fig tree wasn’t acting like a fig tree. After three years, it still didn’t have any fruit. He was ready to cut it down. But the gardener asked for just a little more time—one more year of special care for the tree. What patience he showed!

Jesus shows that same patience with us. God designed us and planted us in this world to serve and obey him. But, too often, we only seek to serve ourselves, and we don’t live how he wants us to live. We don’t bear the fruits of love that he created us to bear. What should God do with us?

Praise God that he is patient with us! For Jesus’ sake, he nurtures us with his Word. He prunes us with his law and feeds us with his gospel. He plants us by the streams of his Word, connects us to Jesus by faith, and grows faith in our hearts that bears fruit of love to praise his name.

Now, given new life by our patient and forgiving God, we live to honor him with lives of fruitful service every day.

Prayer:
Merciful Savior, be patient with me. Through your Word of forgiveness, make my life fruitful for you. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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Making Sense of Tragedy – March 28, 2019

“Unless you repent, you too will all perish.”
Luke 13:3

Making Sense of Tragedy


Daily Devotion – March 28, 2019

Devotion based on Luke 13:3

See series: Devotions

Dozens are left homeless in the wake of a natural disaster. Victims lose their lives when gunmen open fire on schools. Hundreds die every month in wars and terrorists attack the innocent around the world.

Could these tragedies have been prevented? Who is really at fault? Where was God, when these things happened? Why did they happen?

We’re okay when bad things happen to bad people. Maybe, somehow, they are finally getting what they deserve. Maybe God wants to teach society a lesson about immoral living.

But how our thoughts change when tragedy strikes us or when what happens seem unfair! Why did she get cancer while her friend stayed healthy? Why did his son die in the war zone while mine came back alive? Why do innocent bystanders get caught in the crossfire of violence?

It’s not fair, God! Why do you let bad things happen to good people? If you are truly just and loving, how could this happen?

But why those things happened at those times to those people is God’s business, not ours. It is not our job to judge those who were affected, and God certainly isn’t calling us to judge him. Instead, he wants us to take a good, hard look at ourselves. “But unless you repent, you too will all perish,” Jesus said.

The word “repent” means “turn around.” God wants to use the tragedies of life to turn our hearts away from our sin that leads to death to our Savior who gives us life.

None of the tragedies of Jesus’ day or ours can compare to the apparent injustice that Jesus experienced. He was the sinless Son of God. But he was convicted, condemned, and crucified for crimes he never committed.

When he suffered and died on the cross, Jesus switched places with you. He took your accusations against God, your questioning God’s love, your holding onto sinful ways, and he gave you his perfect trust, love, and obedience. He faced hell to give you heaven. He endured death to give you life.

When tragedy strikes, may God’s love at the cross quiet our questions and turn our hearts to Jesus in sincere repentance and joyful praise.

Prayer:
God, life doesn’t always make sense. When tragedy strikes, help me to trust your love in Jesus my Savior. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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Be Careful – March 27, 2019

If you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall!
1 Corinthians 10:12

Be Careful


Daily Devotion – March 27, 2019

Devotion based on 1 Corinthians 10:12

See series: Devotions

A child holds a family heirloom for the first time. “Be careful!” his mother warns. “We don’t want to break it.”

The sidewalks and roads are icy, when a loved one ventures out. “Be careful!” someone warns.

Some friends are hiking along a trail. The terrain is uneven. One misstep could send someone tumbling down the steep hill to certain injury or even death. “Be careful!” the leader warns.

We need such warnings in our spiritual lives too. We face temptations every day. The devil wants us to think those temptations are no big deal. Either it won’t really hurt us if we do what he wants us to do, or we are strong enough not to give in.

But God warns us, “If you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall!” The devil is not your friend. His temptations are not games. If you let your guard down, if you underestimate the enemy, you will fall.

And every spiritual fall is fatal. Whether you are tempted to lust or to lie, to hurt or to hate, to ignore someone in need or to ignore God’s Word, every misstep wreaks havoc on our relationship with our heavenly Father. And the devil’s ultimate goal is to lead us to turn our backs on God entirely, so that we miss out on his mercy, so that we miss out on heaven.

The devil desperately wanted Jesus to fall too. God sent Jesus to fight the devil in our place. If Jesus gave in to temptation, God’s plan to save us from sin and death would fail. But Jesus never let his guard down. He didn’t listen to the devil’s whispers or believe his lies. He didn’t fall. Jesus won the fight. The devil lost.

Now Jesus doesn’t leave us to face temptation alone. Whenever we are tempted, we cry out to him for help, and through his Word he arms us for battle to give us the victory.

Prayer:
Jesus, I am weak. You are strong. When I am tempted, give me your strength. When I fall, forgive me for your mercy’s sake. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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Real People – March 26, 2019

These things happened to them as examples and were written down as warnings for us… No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful.
1 Corinthians 10:11,13a

Real People


Daily Devotion – March 26, 2019

Devotion based on 1 Corinthians 10:11,13a

See series: Devotions

The Bible records history, but it’s not like other history books. It tells the stories of individuals and their relationship with the Lord. It shows real people—warts and all—people who struggled, people who fell, people who failed.

The Bible is filled with stories about people like you and me. And that’s exactly the point. God tells their stories for our benefit. He wants us to put ourselves in their sandals. What were they facing? How am I like them? How was God working in their lives?

God tells us their stories to warn us. We can easily think, “I would never do that. That would never happen to me.” The devil tries to convince us that temptations are no big deal, as long as we don’t fall for any of the “big” ones. God does not want us to let our guard down and become easy prey.

So he tells us the sad stories of sinners who have fallen into the devil’s traps and believed the devil’s lies. He shows us how the devil works, so that we are ready to fight against him. You see, the devil never really changes. He uses the same lies today as he always has. So, when we let our guard down and fall for those lies, we aren’t alone.

But, above all, God tells us their stories so that we see his faithful love shining throughout history. Despite the foolish failures of one generation after another, God did not turn his back on them.

Instead, he promised to forgive them and kept that promise when he sent his own Son to face temptation. He was tempted too, but he didn’t fall for those lies. He was without sin and lived the life that God demanded of all of us. Now, for his sake, God forgives every time we fall, every time we fail.

Because of God’s real love, we are not rejected but rescued from sin and restored to fight temptation with the strength that our faithful God promises through his Word.

Prayer:
Faithful God, forgive me when I fall for the devil’s lies. Give me strength to overcome temptation. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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I AM – March 25, 2019

God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I AM has sent me to you.’”
Exodus 3:14

I AM


Daily Devotion – March 25, 2019

Devotion based on Exodus 3:14

See series: Devotions

How well do you handle change? If you are like most people, you welcome certain changes and dread others. Some changes give us the excitement of a fresh start. Others make us long for how things used to be.

Our world is constantly changing. The way we communicate, travel, and even think is different than it was a generation ago and just keeps changing. And often, we change right along with it.

Sometimes people expect God to work the same way. God, the world is changing. People don’t think and act the way they used to. If you want to stay relevant, if you want to meet the needs of people in the 21st century, you’ve got to change.

But do we really want a God who is always changing? Do we want a God whose love for us changes from one day to the next? Do we want a God who makes a promise one day and changes his mind the next? Do we want a God who listens to our prayers one day and ignores them the next?

God once called himself something that may sound strange to us. He said, “I AM WHO I AM. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I AM has sent me to you.’”

When he calls himself “I AM,” he wants us to know that he is a God who does not change. His unconditional love will never change. His promises of mercy will never change. His power to keep his loving promises will never change.

What a comfort that is! No matter how fickle and unfaithful we are to God, he is always ready to forgive our failures and rescue us from the wrath that we deserve. No matter how much may change in our lives, God will always hear our prayers and answer them in perfect love. We can count on him at all times, knowing that he will bless us here on earth and forever in heaven, just as he promised.

Rejoice that, in a changing world, we have a faithful and unchanging God!

Prayer:
Faithful Lord, thank you that your love and promises to me never change. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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The LORD Cares – March 24, 2019

The LORD said, “I have indeed seen the misery of my people in Egypt. I have heard them crying out because of their slave drivers, and I am concerned about their suffering. So I have come down to rescue them from the hand of the Egyptians and to bring them up out of that land into a good and spacious land, a land flowing with milk and honey.”
Exodus 3:7,8

The LORD Cares


Daily Devotion – March 24, 2019

Devotion based on Exodus 3:7,8

See series: Devotions

“Nobody cares.” What a terrible thought! Whether it is the teenager who feels he has no one to talk to or the widow who feels that everyone is too busy to bother with her, the thought that no one cares is dreadful. Although the person who feels this way may not be aware of just how much people do care, the most important thing to know is that God cares. He ALWAYS cares. When his people cried out to him from slavery in Egypt—God cared. He was concerned about their suffering, and he came to their rescue. He used Moses to deliver them from their bondage and bring them to the Promised Land.

God cares about you. He ALWAYS cares about you. When you cry out to God in your suffering—God cares. When you doubt that he cares, when the circumstances of your life seem to say that he doesn’t care, just look at Jesus’ suffering on the cross. He went to the cross to free you from your slavery to sin and death. He promises to bring you to heaven one day. The One who cared about you enough to do all of that certainly cares enough to deliver you from whatever other trials you are facing. When you are tempted to think, “Nobody cares,” look to the cross and be certain that the LORD cares.

Prayer:
Thank you Jesus for proving your love for me at the cross. When I am down, when I doubt your care and concern, lift my eyes to your cross and comfort me with your care. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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Celebrate Being Debt Free – March 23, 2019

In [Jesus Christ] we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace.
Ephesians 1:7

Celebrate Being Debt Free


Daily Devotion – March 23, 2019

Devotion based on Ephesians 1:7

See series: Devotions

If you are like most people, you are dealing with debt. You have house payments, car payments, and credit card bills. And then there was that furniture you bought last year with no payments due for twelve months. And now the twelve months are over. Debt can be overwhelming. It can feel like a great weight pressing you down—a weight you feel you can never escape.

Whether or not you are like many people when it comes to financial debt, you ARE like every human being when it comes to spiritual debt. You owe God for every sin you have ever committed.

You could try to ignore your spiritual debt. But that would not make it go away, any more than ignoring your credit card bill. You could try to pay off your debt to God, except that you have no currency with which to pay it and with every day you live, you commit more sins and rack up more debt. Spiritual debt is overwhelming. It feels like a great weight pressing you down—a weight you feel you can never escape.

But the Bible has good news for you. God says that Jesus has freed you from your debt. His blood was full payment for your sins. The great weight of your guilt has been lifted. It was placed on Jesus when he hung on the cross, so your spiritual debt never needs to bother you again.

Imagine finding out that someone had paid off all your financial debt—your house, car, credit cards, and even that furniture you purchased. Imagine the weight that would be lifted! Imagine the celebration you would enjoy!

You don’t need to imagine that your spiritual debt to God has been paid. It has. Jesus paid it. So let go of your guilt and celebrate the freedom of your forgiveness!

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, I know that I could never pay the debt I owe because of my sins. But I also know that you paid that debt for me. Thank you. Keep me from feeling the weight of a debt I no longer owe so that I can be free to spend my life celebrating the forgiveness you earned. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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Stubborn – March 22, 2019

I must press on today and tomorrow and the next day . . .
Luke 13:33

Stubborn


Daily Devotion – March 22, 2019

Devotion based on Luke 13:33

See series: Devotions

One hundred fifty-five years ago, during the American Civil War, an army of Union soldiers had become frustrated. For years, this Union army had fought under many different generals. But, no matter who was in charge the result was always the same. They would fight a battle against the Confederate Army, things would get messy and bloody, the Union general in command would lose his nerve and call a retreat, and the war would drag on.

But, then a new general arrived by the name of Ulysses S. Grant. At first, it seemed nothing had changed. Under Grant they had a sharp battle against the Confederate Army. Things got messy and bloody. The next day they received orders to march. “Here we go again,” the soldiers thought.

But, when they arrived at a fork in the road, instead of marching north in retreat, Grant led them south toward their enemy. Ulysses S. Grant was the general they needed. He was a stubborn, determined man. He continued pressing and pressing, attacking and attacking until, eventually, victory was won.

Ulysses S. Grant may have been a stubborn, determined man when it came to defeating the Confederate Army. But, even he cannot out-stubborn Jesus. When it comes to his love for you, Jesus is the most stubborn and determined person in all creation.

Remember that. Remember that when your burdens stubbornly stick to you. Perhaps it’s an ailing parent, a drifting child, uncertain finances, health problems, loneliness, or regrets from your past that you cannot seem to forget. Perhaps it’s just the wear and tear of living in a broken, sinful world.

When your burdens stubbornly stick to you, remember that Jesus is determined to keep his every promise to you. That is what he sealed in his blood on the cross and guaranteed with his empty tomb. He proved his love for you then and he’s not backing away now. Because when it comes to Jesus’ love for you, no one can out-stubborn him.

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, your goodness and love pursue me with a dogged determination. Move me to see your stubborn grace in my life. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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A Walk – March 21, 2019

The Lord Jesus Christ . . . will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body.
Philippians 3:20-21

A Walk


Daily Devotion – March 21, 2019

Devotion based on Philippians 3:20-21

See series: Devotions

Here’s an assignment for you: The next time you visit a hospital, make it a point to take a thoughtful, deliberate walk through that hospital. Look around. Take in what you see.

Behind every door there’s a story, an unfolding drama. There are some who are recovering from accidents and will soon be getting on with their lives. There are others with life-changing injuries. There are patients who are getting treatment for a stubborn bug and will soon be going home. There are others who are undergoing a barrage of tests in hopes of discovering what the problem is. There are families who arrive with balloons and funny cards because a loved one gets to come home. There are families sitting quietly in waiting rooms because they know a loved one is never coming home again.

Such a walk will remind you of one thing. No matter how healthy you are, you are only one bacterium away, one moment’s inattention away, one positive test result away from finding yourself lying in a bed that’s not your own, watching a wall-mounted television, with strange machines beeping at your side. It will remind you that, in this world of sin, each of us possesses a lowly body that’s far more vulnerable and frail than we care to admit.

But such a walk can also remind you of something else. The lowly bodies we have now are not going to be lowly forever. We know this because Jesus has made a promise. He has promised to transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body.

And so, there it is. The same Son of God who took on a human body to live in our place, sacrificed his body on a cross to pay for our sins in full, and raised his body back to life—this same Jesus has promised that the lowly bodies we have now will not be lowly for long. Disease, accident, age, death—these things do not have the final word on our bodies. Jesus does. And his Word says that when he raises his followers from the dead one day, our bodies will be glorious—no more pain or disease or injury or death. What a transformation!

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, for the time being my body is frail and lowly. But not for long. For this I thank you. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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Moment – March 20, 2019

But our citizenship is in heaven.
Philippians 3:20

Moment


Daily Devotion – March 20, 2019

Devotion based on Philippians 3:20

See series: Devotions

If you ever want to take on a sobering read, pick up a book entitled, The Gulag Archipelago. The book is a first-hand account of what life was like in a Soviet forced-labor camp during the 1940’s and ’50’s. The accounts of what took place are so powerful and compelling, that in 1970 the book earned the Nobel Prize. Many consider it one of the most important books of the Twentieth Century.

What pulls you into the text, however, is not just the vivid description of what took place. Mixed in with the details of horror, cruelty, and desperation are proclamations of profound insight.

For example, the author unfolds what some Soviet prison guards were willing to do to terrorize and manipulate the inmates. But when he does, he also reveals what the guards feared the most. He says what they feared most is when they dealt with someone who knew that this life is nothing in comparison with the life that is to come—when they dealt with someone who knew that they were only passing through this short life, and that life eternal awaited. Against this kind of inmate, the prison guards were helpless. And because they were helpless, they were afraid.

Think about that for a moment. Through faith in Jesus—who died for your sin and rose from death—you can now look the rest of your life in the eye. And you can do so with a kind of courage that makes the powers of darkness tremble. Will there be days of difficulty in your future? Yes. Will there be days of sorrow? Yes. Will there be days of loneliness, disappointment, and suffering? Yes, yes, and yes.

But our citizenship is in heaven, God’s Word says. Heaven is where we belong. Heaven is where we are going. And because that is true, the passing moments of trouble we encounter—as terrible as they may be—are only that, passing moments.

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, the troubles I face in this world last only a moment. My life of joy with you will last forever. Help me remember this. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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Empty – March 19, 2019

Their god is their stomach . . . Their mind is set on earthly things.
Philippians 3:19

Empty


Daily Devotion – March 19, 2019

Devotion based on Philippians 3:19

See series: Devotions

Perhaps some of you have seen a reality-TV series entitled, “My 600-lb Life.” The episodes follow the progress of individuals who are in desperate need of extreme weight loss. If you have not seen the show, you may quickly discover that you have much more in common with these individuals than you assume.

It could be that you also struggle with health issues related to weight. Whether you do or not, however, is beside the point. What’s striking is how so many of the individuals in the series are struggling with the same deep-seated problem. For years upon years, they have tried to fill an empty place in their lives with food.

That empty place may have come from a tragic death in their childhood, from abuse, or simply from a general sense of brokenness they cannot define. Their choice for filling that emptiness, however, has been food.

With what have you tried to fill your empty place? Maybe you’ve tried to fill it with food, work, or entertainment and recreation. Or perhaps you’ve tried to fill it with approval from others, constant busyness, alcohol, drugs, pornography, social media, politics, or news networks.

What you already know, however, is this. These things never fill the empty place. They never work. No matter how much you consume, the empty place always returns.

The frightening truth is that you and I, in the loneliness of self, are far emptier than we dare to fear. And that’s why we desperately need Jesus.

When Jesus came to this earth, he came to do far more than simply pay off the outstanding debt of our sin as if it were some abstract equation. In living a holy life on our behalf and then taking our failures to the cross, Jesus reshaped our entire relationship with our Creator. Now, through the power of the gospel, the Holy Spirit fills us. Jesus fills us. He fills us with his promises and his living, breathing Word.

And as he does, he fills your empty place and mine as nothing else will!

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, forgive me. Forgive me for all the ways I have tried to fill my empty place with things that do not satisfy. Fill me with your Spirit. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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Conflict for Christ – March 18, 2019

As soon as Jeremiah finished telling all the people everything the LORD had commanded him to say, the priests, the prophets and all the people seized him and said, “You must die!”
Jeremiah 26:8

Conflict for Christ


Daily Devotion – March 18, 2019

Devotion based on Jeremiah 26:8

See series: Devotions

Many years ago, Steve Turner and Frank Weed teamed up to author a book entitled, Conflict in Organizations. The book is a how-to manual on dealing with conflict in the workplace. As they detail how various individuals react to conflict, Turner and Weed describe one specific group as “Concealers.” Concealers are willing to do a great deal not to experience conflict at all. According to the book, there are three basic types of concealers. First, there are the “Feeling-swallowers.” Feeling-swallowers will smile even when a situation is causing them great distress. Second, there are the “Subject-changers.” Subject-changers transition the conversation to a less confrontational subject as soon as possible. Third, there are the “Avoiders.” Avoiders will go far out of the way to put distance between themselves and any potential conflict.

Many of us can see ourselves in these descriptions. Conflict, after all, is unpleasant. Avoiding the unpleasant, therefore, is understandable.

Avoiding the unpleasant, however, is not a solution. It’s not a solution in the workplace. And it’s not a solution when it comes to serving as a witness for Jesus and his Word.

Let’s be candid, here. There have been all kinds of moments you and I have allowed to slip away—moments that were opportunities to share the message of Jesus with someone else. We let them slip away, however, because we just didn’t want to be bothered. We didn’t want to be bothered with a potential “awkward moment”—a potential conflict, with all the unpleasantness it might bring.

And that’s how my old sinful self often works. It doesn’t openly rebel against my Lord. It just finds a reason to put things off.

It’s time to come to repentance. It’s time to recognize how often I have put my needs ahead of someone who desperately needs Jesus. It’s time to find healing in the forgiveness that Jesus has purchased for me at the cross.

What’s more, it is in that very forgiveness that you and I will find fresh courage. We will find fresh courage to risk conflict and confrontation for the sake of Jesus and his gospel.

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, forgive the many times I have given in to my fears. Wash me clean. Give me fresh courage to live and speak for you. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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I Must Keep Going – March 17, 2019

At that time some Pharisees came to Jesus and said to him, “Leave this place and go somewhere else. Herod wants to kill you.” He replied, “Go tell that fox, ‘I will keep on driving out demons and healing people today and tomorrow, and on the third day I will reach my goal.’ In any case, I must press on today and tomorrow and the next day—for surely no prophet can die outside Jerusalem!
Luke 13:31-33

I Must Keep Going


Daily Devotion – March 17, 2019

Devotion based on Luke 13:31-33

See series: Devotions

“It looks dangerous to me.” As Bob studied the rope bridge, he saw the frayed ends and missing boards. His advice was simple, “Let’s turn back.” In contrast to Bob’s timid nature, John expressed complete confidence. He knew the bridge was going to support their weight because he had just used the bridge a week earlier. So he started across the bridge and invited his friend, “Let’s keep going!”

Jesus faced a similar decision. Should I turn back, or should I keep going? He knew what was in store for him if he pressed on (Luke 13:33). His decision was revealed in his resolve: “I must keep going.”

Jesus knew what he was here to do. (See John 3:16-17.) It was a ministry entrusted to him by his Father. He also knew how it was going to end. Still, he accepted the work, and did not turn away from the cost.

“I must keep going.” With these words I understand the commitment Jesus had for my rescue. He would do everything necessary to free me from the punishment my sin demanded. Because Jesus was willing to die on the cross, I am free. Free from the punishment I deserved, and from Satan’s tyranny over my life.

As I live in this freedom, I need to recognize the challenges that confront me. Satan does not give up his claim on me. My flesh continues to be weak. The world increases its pressures and distractions.

“I must keep going.” It not only becomes my goal for life, it becomes my source of help. When I am tempted to stop following my Savior, or to give up, I need to look to Jesus. I trust that he never gave up on me. It’s this knowledge that becomes my reason to persevere. It’s my courage, power, and conviction to say: “I must keep going.”

Prayer: (Christian Worship: A Lutheran Hymnal: 467)
May the mind of Christ my Savior live in me from day to day,
By his love and power inspiring all I do or say.
May I run the race before me, strong and brave to face the foe,
Looking only unto Jesus as I onward go.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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Great Love – March 16, 2019

“The word is near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart,” that is, the message concerning faith that we proclaim: If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. As Scripture says, “Anyone who believes in him will never be put to shame.” For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile—the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
Romans 10:8-13

Great Love


Daily Devotion – March 16, 2019

Devotion based on Romans 10:8-13

See series: Devotions

When you love someone, you express what’s in your heart by what you say and what you do. You send a card, give a gift, sincerely say, “I love you!” Because when you truly love someone, you want to show it. Love naturally expresses itself.

Jesus’ love for us speaks volumes. His death on a cross and resurrection from the dead reveals the depth and faithfulness of his love for us. He expressed his love by paying for our sins, once and for all. He opened heaven for us. Jesus is committed to staying with us and taking care of us. Those actions of love echo through time. They declare that he will always love us, always forgive us, always save us.

The message of Jesus’ love—the gospel—moves our hearts to dearly love him as our Savior. The Bible says that when our hearts trust that Jesus died to take away our sins and rose from the dead, then our mouths will naturally confess him as Lord and Savior. His love in us empowers us to love him in what we say and how we worship him. The more his love is in our hearts through the power of his Word, the more our lives will be glad to express our love for him.

Prayer:
Jesus, thanks for your great love. Thanks for being my Savior. Help me confess you with all my heart for all my life. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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Lord of All – March 15, 2019

The same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
Romans 10:12b-13

Lord of All


Daily Devotion – March 15, 2019

Devotion based on Romans 10:12b-13

See series: Devotions

Some people seem to have easy lives, and my life is hard. I pray and pray, and nothing ever seems to change. Could it be that God favors those other people, or is holding something against me, maybe something that I did? No, the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him.

Some people seem to go through life without a care in the world, and I feel guilty all the time. I hear that I am supposed to feel forgiven, but I never totally do. Could it be that God has forgiven those other people, but that he is withholding his forgiveness from me until I do something that shows him that I am really, really sorry? No, the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses those who call on him.

People in other countries or in other ethnic groups in my country seem to have it way better than I do. They don’t face as much discrimination as I do, and they have so many more resources than my family does. Could it be that God favors certain countries and certain ethnic groups? No, the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him.

God promises salvation to every person the same way, through faith in Jesus. Jesus’ death paid the price for the sins of the whole world. Jesus’ perfect life is credited through faith to everyone who calls on him. It doesn’t matter what ethnic group, gender, or socio-economic status, the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him. Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.

Prayer:
Lord God, I call on you in faith. Bless me and all whom I love. Grant me confidence in whatever you provide for my life through Jesus Christ my Lord. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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Jesus Understands – March 14, 2019

[Jesus] has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin. Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.
Hebrews 4:15b-16

Jesus Understands


Daily Devotion – March 14, 2019

Devotion based on Hebrews 4:15b-16

See series: Devotions

It happens all the time on social media. People post: “Has anyone else ever experienced this?” They are looking for someone who can sympathize, empathize, or suggest a way forward.

When we are tempted to sin, we might wonder whether Jesus can empathize. Could he possibly understand what we are going through?

The Bible assures us that Jesus does understand and even empathizes with us. He was also tempted and suffered when he was tempted. He was a real human being, and he suffered real temptations. But Jesus did not sin! As a result, he could offer his perfect life in our place, taking the punishment for our sin and giving us his righteousness through faith.

That means we can pray to Jesus with confidence in any situation. When we are tempted, we can pray for strength. When we have given in to temptation, we can pray for forgiveness. When we have difficulties, we can pray for Jesus to supply us with exactly what we need.

Jesus understands what we are going through and knows just how to help us. In fact, he knows even better than we do what we need. He has been there, done that, and wants to help us go through temptation too, all the way to heaven!

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, we approach your throne of grace with confidence. Give us mercy and grace; and help us in our time of need. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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Trust Him – March 13, 2019

The devil led Jesus to Jerusalem and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. “If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down from here. For it is written: ‘He will command his angels concerning you to guard you carefully; they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.’” Jesus answered, “It is said: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’”
Luke 4:9-12

Trust Him


Daily Devotion – March 13, 2019

Devotion based on Luke 4:9-12

See series: Devotions

Sometimes the devil’s temptations are tricky. You think about something that is probably wrong, but you can come up with some pretty good reasons for doing it. Sometimes you even think that you’ll just try it, and if it goes wrong, that will be God’s signal that it was wrong all along, but if nothing bad happens, well then, it must actually be okay.

Jesus cuts through that maze of the devil’s temptations and says simply, “Do not put the Lord your God to the test.” Yes, God says he will take care of us. But by telling us that, he does not invite us to be careless or to do what we know is wrong. He asks us to trust him, not test him.

You can trust God to have his holy angels guard you every step of your life, all the way to heaven. When you suffer on the way to heaven, you can trust God not to leave you comfortless. When you are tempted, you can trust God to provide a way out of the temptation. When you sin, you can trust God to forgive you, because Jesus took the punishment for your sin when he died on the cross.

When you are tempted to test God, trust him instead.

Prayer: (Christian Worship: A Lutheran Hymnal – 446:1)
I am trusting you, Lord Jesus, trusting only you,
Trusting you for full salvation, free and true. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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Serve Him Only – March 12, 2019

The devil led Jesus up to a high place and showed him in an instant all the kingdoms of the world. And he said to him, “I will give you all their authority and splendor; it has been given to me, and I can give it to anyone I want to. If you worship me, it will all be yours.” Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God and serve him only.’”
Luke 4:5-8

Serve Him Only


Daily Devotion – March 12, 2019

Devotion based on Luke 4:5-8

See series: Devotions

Babies may look innocent, but parents can tell you that being naughty comes naturally to them. You don’t have to teach a child to do the wrong thing. That comes very easily. On the other hand, teaching a child to do the right thing can be a struggle.

In fact, everyone starts out with an inclination to serve themselves, and that makes the devil very happy. If his temptations include something that seems good to us, we fall into them very easily.

When God brings us to faith in Jesus as our Savior, we are set free from having to serve ourselves and to please the devil. The devil can offer us what he likes—authority, splendor, power—and we can answer, “No, I have Jesus, and that is enough.”

In gratitude to God for saving us through the work of Jesus, we ask ourselves, “What can I do to thank him?” The Lord our God answers, “Worship and serve me only.” That service is a delight, because we are thankful to Jesus for defeating the devil. Jesus has set us free from having to follow every evil whim and emotion encouraged by our ancient enemy. Instead, we serve him freely with joy.

Prayer: (Christian Worship: A Lutheran Hymnal – 470:1)
Praise to you and adoration, blessed Jesus, Son of God,
Who, to serve your own creation, came to share our flesh and blood.
Guide me that I never may from your fold or pastures stray,
But with zeal and joy exceeding follow where your steps are leading. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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It Is Written – March 11, 2019

Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, left the Jordan and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness, where for forty days he was tempted by the devil. He ate nothing during those days, and at the end of them he was hungry. The devil said to him, “If you are the Son of God, tell this stone to become bread.” Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone.’”
Luke 4:1-4

It Is Written


Daily Devotion – March 11, 2019

Devotion based on Luke 4:1-4

See series: Devotions

When temptation comes along, how do you react? Do you give in every time? Do you fight it for a while but then grow weary? Do you go for a long time without giving in but then indulge? Everyone has felt the lure of temptations from the devil.

What is the best way to fight those temptations? Jesus shows us the power of fighting temptation with words from the Bible. “It is written,” he says, and the devil has no answer. Whatever God says in the Scripture is absolute truth, and it is powerful against temptation.

You will find that turning to a pertinent Bible passage in a moment of temptation is helpful. The Word of God is a powerful weapon against our old, evil foe—the devil. He was defeated by Jesus, and he has no answer to the powerful words of Jesus.

When you have given in to a temptation and you are feeling guilty, it is also helpful to turn to a Bible passage: “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9). Cling to God’s words of forgiveness, and trust that the victory of Jesus over the devil is your victory as well.

Prayer:
Our Father in heaven, lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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Overcoming the Lion – March 10, 2019

The devil said to him, “If you are the Son of God, tell this stone to become bread.” Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man does not live on bread alone.’”
Luke 4:3,4

Overcoming the Lion


Daily Devotion – March 10, 2019

Devotion based on Luke 4:3,4

See series: Devotions

Quickly. Name the most powerful animal in the world? I’m not sure what your answer would be, but mine is the African lion. It’s capable of killing an African buffalo, even though that animal can weigh three or even four times the weight of the “king of the jungle.” Mess with a hungry lion and you’re lunch meat!

Did you know the Bible describes Satan as a roaring lion who is eager and able to kill people—body and soul—in hell? It’s true! (See 1 Peter 5:8) Satan once was a good angel. Now he’s bad to the bone! He’s a liar and murderous enemy of God and his children.

In our verse for today Jesus was being attacked by Satan and his wily temptations for 40 days and nights in the desert. It was a battle. Jesus, being fully human as well as fully God, was tired and hungry. Satan tempted him to stop trusting in his heavenly Father to provide for his bodily needs and, instead, take matters into his own hands by turning the stones around him into loaves of bread for food. But Jesus refused. He fought back with God’s Word, reminding Satan that he was to rely totally on his Father and his providential promises.

Learn from Jesus when Satan comes alluring! Use God’s powerful Word and gospel promises like a sword to fight him off. By his blood stained cross and empty grave, Jesus has defeated Satan once and for all, and for you. Fight against him in confidence because the victory has been won and it is yours!

Prayer:
Jesus, thank you for defeating Satan. Help me fight the good fight, using your Word to comfort and defend me in my battles with the roaring Lion. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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Mountain Top Experiences – March 9, 2019

About eight days after Jesus said this, he took Peter, John and James with him and went up onto a mountain to pray. As he was praying, the appearance of his face changed, and his clothes became as bright as a flash of lightning. Two men, Moses and Elijah, appeared in glorious splendor, talking with Jesus. They spoke about his departure, which he was about to bring to fulfillment at Jerusalem. Peter and his companions were very sleepy, but when they became fully awake, they saw his glory and the two men standing with him. As the men were leaving Jesus, Peter said to him, “Master, it is good for us to be here. Let us put up three shelters—one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah.” (He did not know what he was saying.) While he was speaking, a cloud appeared and covered them, and they were afraid as they entered the cloud. A voice came from the cloud, saying, “This is my Son, whom I have chosen; listen to him.” When the voice had spoken, they found that Jesus was alone. The disciples kept this to themselves and did not tell anyone at that time what they had seen.
Luke 9:28-36

Mountain Top Experiences


Daily Devotion – March 9, 2019

Devotion based on Luke 9:28-36

See series: Devotions

Sometimes in our lives we have what are called “mountain top experiences.” They are experiences that are so great we never want them to end. Some brides and grooms feel that way on their wedding day. They are surrounded by the people that they love the most. They look their best. Everyone is happy and smiling. They never want the day to end. But it does end. They need the wedding day to end so that they can get on with their married life and the future that awaits them.

In this lesson from Luke chapter 9, Jesus and three of his closest followers had a mountain top experience. For a moment the disciples where given a glimpse of Jesus in his greatness as the Son of God. It was awesome. Jesus’ clothes were as bright as a flash of lightning. Jesus conferred with Moses and Elijah, two of the great figures from the Old Testament. Peter didn’t want the experience to end. This is why he proposed that they build three shelters. He was hoping to capture and hold the greatness of this incredible moment.

But like all other mountain top experiences, this moment had to end. Jesus knew that he had very important work waiting for him on a different mountain. That was Mount Calvary, the mountain on which he would be crucified for the sins of all people. It was important for Jesus’ disciples and it is important for us to remember both mountains. The mountain on which Jesus showed his glory reminds us that he is the true Son of God. Mount Calvary reminds us that Jesus is the Lamb of God who willingly gave his life to make the payment for your sins and the sins of the entire world.

This week the season of Lent begins. It is a time when we focus on the suffering and death of Jesus Christ. As we focus on his passion, let us not forget his great power. He is the Son of God who takes away the sin of the world.

Prayer:
Dear Jesus, I worship you as the glorious Son of God who came from heaven to sacrifice yourself as the Lamb of God to take away the guilt of my sins. Bless me with the truth of your Word and the joy of your salvation. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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Jesus Reveals His Glory – March 8, 2019

“As the men were leaving Jesus, Peter said to him, ‘Master, it is good for us to be here. Let us put up three shelters—one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah.’”
Luke 9:33a

Jesus Reveals His Glory


Daily Devotion – March 8, 2019

Devotion based on Luke 9:33a

See series: Devotions

What an event this was! Jesus reveals a glimpse of glory! Wow! Moses and Elijah are there in glorious splendor! Wow! The Father speaks from the cloud! Wow! Peter, James, and John get to see and hear it! Wow! To be there must have been amazing! It’s no wonder Peter said, “Master, it is good for us to be here.” And it’s no wonder he wanted to stay! This was amazing!

But there is one more “wow.” The biggest “wow” of all is that Jesus does not stay. Jesus walks back down that mountain. Why? He walks away from the Mount of Transfiguration, so he can willingly walk to another mountain, to Mt. Calvary, where he suffers and dies. Can you imagine? The glorious, all-powerful God-man was willing to set aside the full use of his glory and power, and instead was willing to carry a cross. And for what purpose? To save you! To save me!

So what is the ultimate point of the Transfiguration? Is it merely for Jesus to show off his power? No, Jesus doesn’t need to show off. Is it merely for us to be scared, seeing our sinfulness? Is it merely for us to get a small glimpse of life eternal, as we see Moses and Elijah chatting with Jesus as Jesus reveals his glory? While it surely shows us those things, there’s more.

The ultimate point of the Transfiguration event is to show us Jesus’ love! Yes, Jesus has all power and glory. He is the all-powerful God. But Jesus also left that mountain to go to Mt. Calvary because he loves you dearly! What could this lead you to say but, “WOW!”

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, lead me to look with even more gratitude to your sufferings and death, knowing that you did all those things for me! Assure me over and over again that you love me. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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The Family of God – March 7, 2019

“A voice came from the cloud, saying, ‘This is my Son, whom I have chosen; listen to him.’”
Luke 9:35

The Family of God


Daily Devotion – March 7, 2019

Devotion based on Luke 9:35

See series: Devotions

What would it be like to be the child of someone powerful, rich, or famous? Could there be some advantages if you had been born into, say, the Kennedy or Bush families? What if one of your parents was Bill Gates, Lebron James, or Christian Yelich? Being born into a situation like that would bring certain advantages.

What would it be like to be the Son of God? That’s one we can’t even imagine! Jesus is so, so different from us. He is almighty, we are weak. He is eternal, we are mortal. He rules the universe, we have a hard time ruling our own thoughts or emotions. Perhaps the worst difference is that he is perfect, while we are sinful. Those sins mean we deserve to have God say to us, “I never knew you. Depart from me.”

But why did Jesus, God’s Son, come to this earth? He didn’t come to rub the difference in our faces. Rather, he came so that he could repair our relationship with God. Jesus came to this earth to live a perfect life and to die a perfect death for us—to win forgiveness and eternal life for us.

And, he accomplished his goals! He lived, died, and rose from the dead! Salvation has been won!

And God loves to give his salvation away, to sinners like you and me. One way he does this is through Holy Baptism. When a person is baptized, they are baptized into the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. To put it differently, God puts his name on that person. They are now “Tom, God’s-Son,” “Beth, God’s-daughter,” because they are now part of God’s family.

Every believer in Christ is part of the most important family ever—the family of God—and can know that, “I am God’s beloved child, too!”

Prayer:
O Father, assure me that I am your child today, tomorrow, and that I will be for all eternity. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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