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Devotions for Life

Riches And Treasure

“Considering the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures of Egypt: for he was looking to the reward” (Hebrews 11:26).
 
The wealth of Egypt during the days of Moses was legendary. Because he was adopted into the Pharaoh’s family, Moses had the opportunity to partake in the riches and treasure that was more than one could imagine. Nevertheless, by faith Moses chose to endure ill-treatment with God’s people. Moses saw that the future eternal reward was far greater than earthly riches. By faith Moses could overcome the temporary temptations, dangers, and reproaches that came his way. He believed God, having complete confidence in the Supreme Provider (Hebrews 10:35, 11:1 and 6).
 
Today we have the opportunity to partake in all the spiritual wealth of God through His Son, the Christ (John 3:16 and 36). The revelation of God’s mystery, the riches of His glory, that is, “Christ Himself in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Colossians 2c-3). Spiritual treasure points us to a storehouse of great value found only in Christ. This is opposite of what the false teachers offer, “Empty deception” (Colossians 2:8), which has no value at all.
 
In Christ, we find true “Wisdom and knowledge” that comes from above in terms of spiritual insight. Riches and treasures of great value, in ancient times, were often hidden in safe places until they were needed. Today, in order to find God’s wonderful spiritual wealth, we must search where His riches and treasures are hidden: in Christ Jesus, our Lord.
 
What will happen if we keep seeking true treasure? We will find it (Matthew 7:7-11). What do we have in our “Earthen vessels? Treasure (II Corinthians 4:7).
 
Song: “Heaven Holds All to Me”
 
Wonderful Father, I praise and thank You for the unsurpassable treasures offered through Jesus. There is nothing on earth that compares even faintly with what awaits in my heavenly home. May I always focus my heart on Jesus and the spiritual riches that He offers. In my beloved Savior’s name. Amen.
 
Tom Walker, Englewood, Colorado
tsaawalk@aol.com

 



What Sort Of Man?

Ponder: What was Jesus like?
 
Scripture: “What sort of man is this that even winds and sea obey Him?” (Matthew 8:27 ESV).
 
Who hasn’t wondered what Jesus was like in person? Isaiah prophesied that Messiah would be rather ordinary-looking (53:2) – nothing like the tall, handsome King Saul. But what was His voice like? How did He carry Himself when He walked? The easy answer is: “We don’t know!”
 
When Jesus had miraculously stilled the storm on the Sea of Galilee, His disciples were so amazed that they asked, “What sort of man is this?” Mark and Luke have them asking, “Who is this?” The meaning is the same. Obviously, they weren’t asking what His name was. But they knew He wasn’t just another miracle-worker like Moses, Elijah, and others they had learned about in the Synagogue.
 
In time, they would fully realize that Jesus was God in the flesh. But for now, this miracle taught them some things about Jesus that are good for us to know and appreciate also. One of those is that Jesus was fully human (as well as divine); He had the same needs that we have. One was the need for rest. Jesus became tired and needed sleep. No sooner had they launched the boat than Jesus went to sleep in the stern.
 
Brother J.W. McGarvey’s harmony of the gospels, entitled “The Fourfold Gospel,” indicates that Jesus may have taught as many as seven parables during the day before calming the storm that evening. Mark 4:34 tells us that He also explained the parables to the Twelve when they were alone. Now, anyone who thinks a day filled with preaching and teaching isn’t exhausting should give it a try! “Come on in, the water’s fine!”
 
Jesus was not a Superman character. Indeed, as Hebrews 2:17 says, “in all things He had to be made like His brethren.” Temptations didn’t bounce off of Him like bullets off of Superman. When Jesus didn’t eat, He became hungry; when He was wounded, He bled and suffered pain. And here, He became exhausted and fell into a sleep so deep that He didn’t awaken even when the waves sent water crashing into the boat.
 
Jesus knows the struggles you face daily. He faced them, too, and overcame them by faith. More on that in another devotional!
 
Song: “Master, The Tempest Is Raging”
 
Prayer: “Father in heaven, we thank You for giving us a faithful and merciful High Priest Who sympathizes with us in the trials we face here on earth. Help us, we pray, to trust Him, to learn from Him, and to imitate Him. In His name, Amen.
 
Joe Slater (Justin, TX)
jaslater1954@gmail.com

 

 



“By Many Or By Few”

Today’s Bible Verse: “Perhaps the Lord will work for us, for the Lord is not restrained to save by many or by few” (2 Sam. 14:6).
As was often the case, Israel and the Philistines were at war. Jonathan and his armor bearer were about to engage some of the enemy in battle, but Jonathan didn’t know how strong the enemy was. But, Jonathan was confident that God would give them the victory even though there were only two on God’s side. He said to his armor bearer, “perhaps the Lord will work for us, for the Lord is not restrained to save by many or by few.”   Look at the confidence Jonathan expressed.

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