WEEK 07

January 12 – January 18

DAILY READINGS

Sunday

Luke 4:16-30

Monday

Luke 4:31-44; Psalm 22:21-31; Proverbs 2:6-8

Tuesday

Matthew 12:33-50; Matthew 13:1-9; Psalm 23:1-6; Proverbs 2:9-11

Wednesday

Matthew 13:10-33; Psalm 24:1-3; Proverbs 2:12-14

Thursday

Matthew 13:34-58; Psalm 24:4-10; Proverbs 2:15-18

Friday

Matthew 14:1-36; Psalm 25:1-9; Proverbs 2:19-22

Saturday

Luke 5:1-16; Psalm 25:10-22; Proverbs 3:1-3

DEVOTIONAL: READ LUKE 4:16-30

Jesus was becoming a popular teacher in the synagogues of Galilee. When He came home to Nazareth, it made sense for them to ask Him to teach in their synagogue on the Sabbath. At first, things went well. Jesus read a passage from the scroll of Isaiah 61 that most Jews would have recognized as speaking of the Messiah. When He was done reading, Jesus sat down and said, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing” (Luke 4:21). At first, those who heard Him were pleased and spoke well of Jesus.

Then Jesus turned a corner in His teaching. He began telling Old Testament stories that emphasized God showing grace to Gentiles as well as the Israelites. His purpose−to reveal the darkness in the hearts of His audience. They were excited to receive the promises of blessing, but none of them wanted to hear the truth about the darkness in their own hearts. Suddenly, they were all outside of town on a cliff ready to throw Jesus over. His “gracious words” had become offensive to them; and just as He predicted, they turned on Him and rejected Him. Miraculously, Jesus escaped.

Often, our tendency is to be like the people of Nazareth. When we hear a message of God’s goodness and blessing, we are quick to embrace it. But when the Bible is challenging us or speaks about our sinfulness, we look for ways to discount it, or we reject it outright. When we reject the difficult parts of scripture, we are rejecting Jesus. The good news of the gospel is not that Jesus came to make good people better, but that He came to make sinners righteous. We can’t experience the fullness of God’s grace unless we are willing to accept the truth of our sin.

REFLECTION

Do you find it hard to personally accept all parts of Jesus’ teaching? Why? What are some examples?

How does seeing the fullness of your sin cause you to have a greater view of God’s grace?

What are the biggest internal obstacles that hinder you from applying scripture to your daily life? How might you overcome those? Where can you get help to overcome those obstacles? (Consider taking a class from Fellowship this semester. Visit register.fellowshipnwa.org to sign up.)

DISCUSSION

What are you learning about in your life right now?

PRAYER

Lord Jesus, thank You for the reminder that You are intimately acquainted with rejection. You willingly and sacrificially lived a life marked with scorn, harsh judgment, and human misunderstanding. You, Lord, understand my heart better than anyone when I encounter the scorn and judgment of man. Thank You that I am not alone in the middle of it all.

Give me the wisdom to know Your will as You have revealed it in Your life-giving Word. Help me to trust You when Your way is difficult for me to accept. Give me the ability and strength to live as You want me to live.

Grant me the grace to walk through all situations and seasons empowered by Your Spirit. You are the One who has made me acceptable and lovable by Your grace alone. Help me to live my life praising You, unconcerned with receiving praise for myself. I no longer have to walk in fear of judgment because You were judged in my place. You were rejected that I could be brought into the family of God. Thank You that, regardless of the judgment of others, I am eternally accepted in Christ. Amen.

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