God’s ultimate plan and purpose for all Christians is to make His Name known among the nations. For His is a Missional plan and part of the Great Commission to go and make disciples. But before you start making excuses of why you can’t…Jesus said in John 20:21, “As the Father sent Me, I am sending you.” Fulfilling the Great Commission for you could involve traveling internationally and reaching people-groups very different from you, or it might be just touching the people you see everyday…God’s plan is unique for each one of us. But His purpose remains the same…Make My Name known among the nations.
Spoiler alert! The bad guys lose in the end. Satan’s nickname is the devil which means slanderer and/or accuser. Satan’s mode of operation is to slander God’s word by deceivingly presenting false and blasphemous suggestions to gullible human minds. He is also the accuser of the brethren before God…using shame and guilt to maim, kill and destroy lives. And as I was staring at this word- devil – I saw why he was so aptly nicknamed this, for within that word I saw just who Satan is and what he does…evil. But his time is going to end, for within the Book of Revelation we see many passages that tell of his demise..Revelation 12:9, Revelation 9:17, and Revelation 14:10-11 for a few. Evil may exist for now…but not for long.
Human emotions can be all over the place…from jubilation to despair. But when your trust is firmly fixed on Jesus, the highs and lows aren’t as severe. For when your faith is based on Him and what He can do and not on fate or luck…you can face any bad news with confidence that Jesus will see you through. This is shown to us in Psalm 112:7, “He will have no fear of bad news; his heart is steadfast in the Lord. His heart is secure, he will have no fear.” Thank you Lord for that certainty we can have.
The Sea of Galilee is only a little over 8 miles across, so the disciples had rowed almost halfway when Jesus appeared out of the darkness, walking on the water. The disciples were terrified. Matthew’s Gospel tells us that they thought it was a ghost gliding across the water. Here were men who had traveled with, ministered along side, and observed miracle after miracle from the hand of Jesus…but still doubted. They could of also remembered Old Testament Scriptures such as Job 9:8 that said, “He alone stretches out the heavens and treads on the waves of the sea.” Or Psalm 77:19, “Your path led through the sea, Your ways through the mighty waters, though Your footprints were not seen.” So the next time you start to beat yourself up for doubting God…remember, the disciples did too.
Melchizedek was both…king of Salem (the early name for Jerusalem) and high priest of the Most High God. In these verses Jesus is also being shown to have combined both kingly and priestly duties. For it tells us in Hebrews that Jesus entered the Most Holy Place, once for all, by way of His own blood and for our sake, and made atonement for the sins of all people. And in doing so, we can now have this eternal hope…secure and reliable, that will never fail.
He is not a sadistic God that takes delight in watching the wicked die, nor is He unjust. But He is the only One that can proclaim with all certainty that His promises and judgement will prevail. So the decision-making becomes ours. Do we continue down the path of unethical and immoral actions and behaviors, or do we change course, shifting our focus from self to Jesus, and yielding up tendencies and propensities to a Savior who can forgive and save us. “Come back to Me,” the Lord is exhorting us…the invitation is there, but ultimately it becomes our responsibility to act on it.
Jairus was the president of the Jewish synagogue in Capernaum and a very distraught father. He had watched as life ebbed out of his beloved little daughter. Nothing they did had made any difference, and now he felt she was beyond human help. So in desperation, Jairus ran to find Jesus. No longer full of pompous formality, ego, or pride, he was sprinting to find the only person he believed could change his daughter’s hopeless condition. It says he threw himself down at Jesus’ feet and begged Him to come and lay hands on her…”so she will be healed and live.” What faith came from this unlikely man who had nothing left but to put his trust in Jesus.