Our church is reading the New Testament together over the course of the next 30 days. This is a huge goal, but I think it will bring great results for those who read it together. I'm going to be posting some personal observations from the daily reading... obviously I can't comment on every chapter or verse from the reading, but here is my first posting:
- I love reading about Jesus' family tree in Matthew 1. We see how God can take messed up people and still use them for His glory! That makes me feel a lot better about myself. I'm messed up... but I trust that God can use me for His glory.
- Joseph thinks he will do what appears to be the right thing by divorcing Mary quietly. But actually, the right thing to do in this situation APPEARS to be the wrong thing to others. How did Joseph handle the pressure from family and friends who might have told him he was crazy to stay with someone like Mary? Sometimes obeying God might appear to be the wrong thing.
- Sometimes God will lead us to temptation? The Spirit leads Jesus into the wilderness to be tempted by Satan. (Matthew 4) It's interesting to me that in chapter 6 when Jesus teaches us how to pray, part of the model prayer is "lead us not into temptation."
I'm very thankful that Jesus faced temptation. Hebrews 4:15 teaches us that "we do not have a high priest (Jesus) who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet was without sin." Jesus understands what we go through... and He was victorious!!
- The "Sermon on the Mount" (chapters 5 - 7) is full of insight into the Christian life. If you want to know what it looks like to follow Jesus, read these chapters.
There is so much to comment on, but perhaps the key is found in chapter 7:24 - 27. If you put Jesus' words into practice you are a wise man.
- What kind of prayer requests do we normally make? In Matthew 9:38 Jesus tells us to pray that God will send more workers. Far too often we spend most of our time praying to keep Christians out of heaven, than praying for workers to help get lost people into heaven.
- What are we putting into our lives? Jesus talks about a man in chapter 12:43 who gets rid of an evil spirit... but the man does not fill his life up with the things of God. That allows the evil spirit to come back with more evil spirits and the man is worse off than he was before.
It is so crucial that we fill our life with the things of God... because whether we realize it or not, we will fill our life with something. That's why reading the Bible like we are seeking to do is so important to our life.
Let's allow God's Word to transform our lives!!!