May 8

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“You search the Scriptures because you think they give you eternal life. But the Scriptures point to me!” (John 5:39 NLT).

From: May 8, 2018

THE WRITTEN WORD POINTS TO THE LIVING WORD
Jesus acknowledged that the Jews were a people of the Book, yet He challenged them to see that it was He to which the Scriptures pointed. He was essentially saying, “If you claim to believe the Book, then you must believe in Me.”
 
This is still true. When we rightly preach the Scriptures, we must always preach Christ and “Him crucified” (1 Cor. 2:2). Jesus is the point of our preaching. There is much helpful wisdom in the Scriptures, but eternal life is in the Son. Therefore, we proclaim Christ from the Scriptures! For it is by His Spirit that we understand the Scriptures (1 Cor. 2:14-16), and by His life that we are being transformed in our minds to keep them (Rom. 12:1-2).
 
Remember the disciples who walked with the risen Lord on the road to Emmaus? They didn’t recognize Him at first. Yet, as they walked, He explained from Moses to the prophets what the Scriptures said concerning Him. As they reflected on this encounter, they said to one another, “Didn’t our hearts burn within us as he talked with us on the road and explained the Scriptures to us?” (Luke 24:32).
 
The written Word points to the Living Word, then the Living Word points back again. Christ causes our hearts to “burn within us” as we encounter Him in the Scriptures.

“Do not marvel at this; for the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves will hear His voice and come forth—those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation” (John 5:28-29).

From: May 8, 2017

An hour is coming when the resurrecting life of Jesus will raise all of humanity bodily. The resurrection of the body is both the hope and the dread of the Christian faith. For the “voice” of Christ will call and all will “come forth” just as Lazarus did. Those who have believed in Jesus will be raised to eternal life with Him. But those who have not believed will be raised to “condemnation,” which is the judgement of God already passed against them because of their sin.
 
The resurrection of the righteous will come first, preceding the resurrection of the condemned. There is much more on this in the Scriptures, yet this point is to be understood: The resurrection of the body is central to Christ’s teaching. This is not to be understood as a metaphor, but a reality. Christ taught the resurrection of the dead, then He proved it by being raised from the dead on the third day.

“Now the boy Samuel continued to grow both in stature and in favor with the Lord and also with man.” (1 Samuel 2:26 ESV)

From: May 8, 2016

This verse about how Samuel grew is very similar to the one in Luke 2:52 that described how Jesus grew. Samuel was a wanted child. His mother, Hannah, had been barren, but she prayed to God for a son, promising to give him back to the Lord. And God heard her prayer. When Samuel was weaned, Hannah presented him to the priest, Eli, to raise. So, Samuel grew up serving in the Tabernacle of the Lord (1 Sam. 3:1). In contrast to Eli’s own rebellious sons, his adopted son, Samuel, was called of God. It’s amazing how God used a mother’s love and prayers to bring forth a deliverer in Israel like Samuel, a man who grew up like Jesus did. Hannah’s love and faith should still inspire mothers today!
Happy Mother’s Day!

“There is another who bears witness of Me” (John 5:32 NKJV)

From: May 8, 2015

Jesus described the four-fold witness that attested to His identity as the Christ, the Son of God: 1) John the Baptist, 2) His works, 3) the Father, and 4) the Scriptures. In order to reject Jesus, one must reject all four of these witnesses. Today, I am a witness to Christ’s identity. I affirm the four witnesses’ testimony and bear witness of His salvation work in me and in mine. Can you bear witness with us?

“And the Lord came and called as before, ‘Samuel! Samuel!’ And Samuel replied, ‘Speak, your servant is listening.’” (1 Samuel 3:10 NLT)

From: May 8, 2014

While young Samuel was sleeping in the Tabernacle he was awakened a fourth time by the voice of the Lord calling him. The first three times he ran to Eli, thinking his old master was calling him. He didn’t yet recognize God’s voice. After the third time old Eli realized that God must be calling to Samuel, so he instructed him on how to answer. When Samuel replied as Eli instructed, God spoke to him. From that day forward Samuel was confirmed as a prophet. Throughout Israel he was respected as a prophet of God whose word was reliable. Samuel had to learn to hear God’s voice and respond. Have you learned to hear from God? Are you willing to get up in the middle of the night to hear from Him?

“And she named the child Ichabod, saying, ‘The glory has departed from Israel!'” (1 Samuel 4:21 ESV)

From: May 8, 2013

After she heard that her husband was killed and the ark was captured by the Philistines, the daughter-in-law of Eli went into labor. With her last breath she named her newborn son “Ichabod,” meaning “no glory,” and died. The ark represented God’s presence and glory. How could Israel be the people of God without His presence? Yet today, many may as well have “Ichabod” written over their doors, for they practice a form of religion, but God’s Spirit is not present. Before I preach every Sunday, I pray, “God, if you don’t show up, nothing happens! Lord, be present. Show us your glory. Let Your Word speak to us afresh!”

“In those days the word of the LORD was rare” (1 Samuel 3:1)

From: May 8, 2011

Not that God wasn’t willing. Man wasn’t listening. Then, a woman named Hannah gave her son Samuel completely to God. He was one of the greatest prophets in all Israel. And the once barren Hannah became known as one of the greatest mothers. Happy Mother’s Day!