March 24

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“At daybreak he called together all of his disciples and chose twelve of them to be apostles” (Luke 6:13 NLT).

From: March 24, 2018

ALL-NIGHT PRAYER PRECEDED CALLING AND SENDING
Jesus went up into a mountain and prayed all night before choosing twelve of His followers to be “apostles.” The word “apostle” means “one sent.” Jesus spent the night praying to get clear instruction from His Father on whom He would send. After praying, He arose at daybreak to commission and send out His apostles to represent Him and to preach the gospel. This was a profoundly significant day in the establishment of the Church.
 
Jesus is still calling and sending out His followers to represent Him and preach the gospel. I wonder how many will respond as Isaiah did when hearing the Lord’s call?
 
“And I heard the voice of the Lord saying, ‘Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?’ Then I said, “Here I am! Send me” (Isaiah 6:8).

“But the Lord was angry with me on your account, and would not listen to me. So the Lord said to me: ‘Enough of that! Speak no more to Me of this matter. Go up to the top of Pisgah, and lift your eyes toward the west, the north, the south, and the east; behold it with your eyes, for you shall not cross over this Jordan” (Deuteronomy 3:26-27 NKJV).

From: March 24, 2017

The word “Deuteronomy” means “second law.” Moses wrote this fifth book of the Torah to remind the Israelites of what they had learned from the Lord during their wilderness travels and to prepare them to enter the Promised Land.
 
But Moses would not be allowed to enter the Promised Land. He had disobeyed the Lord at Kadesh by striking the rock when God had told him to speak to it to bring forth water. He blamed the people for driving him to anger. He pleaded with the Lord to let him go into the land, but the Lord told him to stop asking. Instead, the Lord instructed him to go to the “top of Pisgah,” whose peak was called, Mt. Nebo, so that he might see the land beyond the Jordan. This was as close as Moses, who had led the Israelites out of Egypt and through the wilderness for 40 years, ever got to the land flowing with milk and honey.
 
I stood on Mt. Nebo in 2005 while visiting missionaries in Jordan. From its height on a day with a clear blue sky, I could see the land that Moses was never allowed to enter. It was beautiful. Moses must have thought so too.

“And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.” – John 3:14-15

“Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you” (Luke 6:27-28 ESV)

From: March 24, 2016

This is from Jesus’ Sermon on the Plain, describing the new economy of the kingdom of heaven. Instead of reciprocal response, the believer is to respond out of a new spiritual character, as God does. God’s kingdom people are to “love, do good, bless and pray” because this is what is in them to do regardless of how others treat them. God’s people are revealing His character to the world by this. Jesus’ sermon is subversive to the world’s economy which says to respond in kind. Jesus says that we are to “love, do good, bless and pray” no matter how we are treated. The Jesus’ Way turns the world upside down.

“God be merciful to us and bless us, And cause His face to shine upon us, Selah That Your way may be known on earth, Your salvation among all nations” (Psalm 67:1-2 NKJV)

From: March 24, 2015

The psalmist prayed that God would show them mercy, blessing and favor, so that they might display the way of salvation to the nations. This prayer aligned with God’s promise to Abraham that through his “offspring all nations would be blessed” (Gen. 22:18). It also borrowed words from the benediction of Aaron, “The Lord bless and keep you, the Lord make His face shine upon you…” (Num. 6:22-27). Quoting God’s Word and purpose back to Him in prayer is a great basis for bringing your heart into alignment with His. Asking Him to supply your need and show you favor, so that you might fulfill His purpose to bring salvation to the nations, is gospel-centered praying. It is a Great Commission prayer. Do you pray that you and your church will be blessed, so that it may carry the gospel to the nations?

“One day soon afterward Jesus went up on a mountain to pray, and he prayed to God all night. At daybreak he called together all of his disciples and chose twelve of them to be apostles” (Luke 6:12-13 NLT)

From: March 24, 2014

One of Christ’s most profound actions was to appoint the Twelve. As he did before other important times, he prayed in preparation. On this particular occasion Jesus prayed all night on a mountain top. I wonder what the weather was like. Was it a clear night? Did a wet dew fall? Did a chill set in before the sunrise? Jesus had such stamina for prayer. He was so committed to getting what he needed from the Father that physical things such as cold, fatigue, hunger and thirst seemed only to focus his intensity. We don’t know what he and the Father discussed that night. But we do know that at daybreak he appointed the Twelve, even choosing the betrayer, Judas with full knowledge of what was ahead. Jesus performed many amazing miracles. Yet, on this night he accomplished an easily overlooked part of his mission: He appointed the Twelve “to be apostles.” And they proclaimed the good news of Christ’s death, burial and resurrection to the world.

“Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you” (Luke 6:27-28 ESV)

From: March 24, 2013

This is from Jesus’ Sermon on the Plain, describing the new economy of the kingdom of heaven. Instead of reciprocal response, the believer is to respond out of a new spiritual character, as God does. God’s kingdom people are to “love, do good, bless and pray” because this is what’s in them to do regardless of how others treat them. God’s people are revealing His character to the world by this. Jesus’ sermon is subversive to the world’s economy which says to respond in kind. Jesus says that we are to “love, do good, bless and pray” no matter how we are treated. The Jesus’ Way turns the world upside down.

Temptation of Christ

From: March 24, 2009

I’m so happy to see all of these posts! When I see WCCers getting deep in the Scriptures it makes me feel like we’re really being the church! Hey, I liked Jonathan’s insight to the temptation of Christ. Three tests, each with a different focus. It reminds me that Satan hasn’t changed much. He tempted Eve with three too (1- good for food, 2- pleasing to the eye, 3- desirable for gaining wisdom)
Perhaps this is what John meant…
“For everything in the world–the cravings of sinful man, the lust of his eyes and the boasting of what he has and does–comes not from the Father but from the world.” (1 John 2:16 NIV).