August 30

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“You see, we don’t go around preaching about ourselves. We preach that Jesus Christ is Lord, and we ourselves are your servants for Jesus’ sake.” (2 Corinthians 4:5 NLT).

From: August 30, 2018

MAKING JESUS FAMOUS (AND OURSELVES A FOOL)
Paul didn’t care what people thought of him as long as they heard him proclaim Christ as Lord. But the Corinthians were easily impressed by appearance and eloquent speech. Though Paul had been the one who had first preached the gospel to them, to which they believed and were saved, they were swayed by fancy preachers who came later. In response, Paul reminded them that he and his preaching team sought to make Jesus famous, not themselves. In fact, in Paul’s first letter he told them that “it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe” (1 Cor. 1:21). And further he wrote, “We are fools for Christ’s sake” (1 Cor. 4:10).
 
If our life’s purpose is to make Christ Jesus famous, then we must give up on making much of ourselves. We proclaim not ourselves, nor our church, but Christ! The world may think us foolish, but we have given up on pleasing men, seeking to please God alone.

“Therefore, since we have this ministry, as we have received mercy, we do not lose heart” (2 Corinthians 4:1 NKJV).

From: August 30, 2017

The combined effect of having received both the “mercy” and the “ministry” of the gospel strengthened the apostle Paul, so that he did not “lose heart.” The same should cause us to persevere in sharing the gospel. For as Paul also wrote, God has “reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation” (2 Cor. 5:18).

“O God, we have heard with our ears, our fathers have told us, what deeds you performed in their days, in the days of old” (Psalm 44:1 ESV)

From: August 30, 2016

The Psalmist reflected on the stories told by their fathers of God’s miraculous deeds in bringing them out of Egypt and into the Promised Land. Although those stories were from “days of old,” the author still leaned on them in faith to give him hope for the days ahead. These faith stories, although not experienced first hand, yet inspired hope. Remembering the hand of God in the past, we too can be encouraged as we face the future.

“For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ” (2 Corinthians 4:6 NKJV)

From: August 30, 2015

The same God who created physical light by His command has sent His Son, Jesus to be our spiritual light. Yet, our hearts remain in sin’s darkness until they behold the light of the gospel “in the face of Jesus Christ.” Those who would seek to know God, to see His glory, must seek the face of Jesus. There is no other power to enlighten our darkened hearts. For Christ is the image of the invisible God, the Light of the world, the only way to the Father. Although our hearts now reflect His light as we share the gospel, we are not its source, so we must always direct others to seek His face. We sing: “Turn your eyes upon Jesus. Look full in His wonderful face. And the things of earth will grow strangely dim, in the light of His glory and grace.”

“We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves” (2 Corinthians 4:7 NLT)

From: August 30, 2014

Our message is not about us, but about our Lord. For we are like clay pots containing a great treasure. Our weakness only serves to emphasize the greatness of Christ within us. When we want people to see us, to applaud our efforts, we forget that our purpose is to cause others to give glory to God, not to us. For people to see the Treasure, we must decrease, so that He might increase. We are to live in such a manner that there is no other explanation for our existence than God’s power within us.

“We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves” (2 Corinthians 4:7)

From: August 30, 2012

This “light” is the glory of the abiding Christ in us. As we walk by faith through this world our bodies become increasingly fragile, yet the glory revealed in us increases. We learn to preach Christ, and not ourselves. We learn to lean on Christ, not our own strength.