May 26

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“I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow!” (John 15:11 NLT).

From: May 26, 2018

THE THINGS OF CHRIST THAT GIVE US JOY!
The disciples were grieved to hear that Jesus would soon be leaving them. So Jesus shared with them the “things” that would belong to them because of His sacrifice. “These things” now belong to all those who abide in Christ, so that His “overflowing joy” abides in them.
 
What are “these things” of Christ that bring us joy?
 
1) HIS PLACE. Jesus told His disciples not to be troubled because He was preparing a place for them to live with Him forever (John 14:1-3).
 
2) HIS PATER. The place that Jesus would prepare would be with His Father (Greek: “Pater”) (John 14:1-6).
 
3) HIS PARACLETE. Jesus told His disciples that He would ask the Father to send them “another Advocate” (Greek: “parakletos”), which is the Holy Spirit to live in them (John 14:12-31).
 
4) HIS PRESENCE. Jesus told them the parable of the Vine and Branches, that He was the Vine and they the branches, and that they would only be able to bear spiritual fruit by abiding in Him. In this way, Christ would abide in them and they would abide in Him (John 15:1-11).
 
Happiness is based on favorable happenings. But joy, overflowing joy, is found in “these things” of Christ. His Place, His Pater, His Paraclete, and His Presence, these are the things of Christ that bring us overflowing joy!

“So Mephibosheth dwelt in Jerusalem, for he ate continually at the king’s table. And he was lame in both his feet” (2 Samuel 9:13 NKJV).

From: May 26, 2017

Who is Mephibosheth?
 
Mephibosheth was the son of Jonathan, the son of King Saul, who was five years old when the news came about their deaths in battle. His nurse was fleeing with him to hide when “he fell and became disabled” (2 Sam. 4:4). Now, perhaps 16 years later, King David called for him.
 
Surely he was terrified as he limped into the king’s throne room and fell prostrate on his face before the king. Middle Eastern custom would have suggested that David would slay all remaining descendants of Saul in order to secure his own throne. Yet, while the crippled Mephibosheth lay face down, trembling with anxiety, he heard King David say, “Fear not. For I will surely show you kindness for your father’s sake, and you shall eat bread at my table continually” (2 Sam. 9:7).
 
Who is Mephibosheth? First, we must understand David’s identity. For David was a type of Christ, and his behavior towards Mephibosheth foreshadowed the kindness of Christ towards us. Mephibosheth had fallen and was crippled all his days. He was from the House of Saul, who had made David his enemy, trying to kill him. It was a scandalous thing that King David would seek to find Mephibosheth and then invite this crippled, former enemy to eat at the same table as one of his own sons. Yet, this is exactly what David did.
 
Who is Mephibosheth? We are. We are fallen and crippled by sin. We have been enemies of God. Yet Jesus Christ, the Son of David, has sought us out and found us. He has invited us to eat continually at the King’s table as one of the Father’s own sons.

“But David remained at Jerusalem” (2 Samuel 11:1b ESV)

From: May 26, 2016

In the Spring, when kings go to war, David stayed home. Yet, he sent his army off to engage in a conflict. Perhaps he told himself that he deserved a break. The leader who usually led from the front, didn’t even leave his house. And so, a kind of restless ennui seems to have settled on him. He strolled around on the roof of his palace, while his troops marched to battle. In was in that moment, that the most dangerous foe in David’s career was observed. Was it another giant from Gath preparing to charge? No. Was it an enemy archer taking aim at the king? No. It was a beautiful woman, bathing on the roof of a nearby house. In that moment, that lazy, unfocused moment, David’s heart was breached by a spiritual battle more deadly than any giant’s sword or assassin’s dart. David’s unguarded eyes fell upon beautiful Bathsheba and his casual glance turned into a lustful look. In the next few days, David, the man “after God’s own heart,” went from apathy to adultery and from spiritual malaise to murder. David, the champion, was defeated by sexual temptation. Thinking himself safe within the confines of his palace, he was overcome by man’s ancient foe. Staying home, David surrendered to sin.

“I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing” (John 15:5 NKJV)

From: May 26, 2015

The abiding life begins with salvation, yet here in John 15, Jesus is speaking of the abundant life that becomes evident as we continue to abide in Him. We understand that our salvation is accomplished by Christ and by no effort of our own. Yet, after receiving this salvation through faith, we often attempt to live the Christian life by our own self-effort. But just as we are saved by grace through faith, so shall we continue to live by “abiding” in God’s grace through faith. Wherever we are not exhibiting love, joy peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control, in that very place we are not abiding in Christ. Abiding, we rest in Christ, drawing on His life-giving power and presence even in the midst of life’s storms. We are not called to imitate Christ, but to abide in Him, so that His life is manifest in ours.

“Your promise revives me; it comforts me in all my troubles” (Psalm 119:50 NLT)

From: May 26, 2014

Psalm 119 is not only the longest psalm. It is the longest chapter in the Bible. It is an acrostic poem with 22 stanzas based on the Hebrew alphabet. This verse is found in the stanza beginning with Hebrew’s 7th letter “zayin.” It speaks of God’s “promise” which comforts the psalmist in his troubles. It doesn’t name which promise. It could be one of many. Psalm 119 is an anthem to God’s Word. It celebrates his laws, promises, statutes, words, decrees, etc. (and many other synonyms for “word.” How many can you find?). When I feel troubled, I often find solace in God’s promises. The Lord is a promise-making and a promise-keeping God. I meditate on his promises and find comfort there. Today, I am encouraged by his promise to always be with us, even until the end of the age. If I have his presence, I have him and all his promises too.