WHAT JESUS DID! -- http://www.heartlight.org/

Friday, February 8, 2002

He Knew What People Were Really Like

Because of the miraculous signs he did in Jerusalem at the
Passover celebration, many people were convinced that he was indeed
the Messiah. But Jesus didn't trust them, because he knew what people
were really like. No one needed to tell him about human nature.
-- John 2:23-25 (NLT)

We often play for the acceptance of the crowd. We want others to
notice us as significant. So many of us want our moment of fame.
Jesus didn't operate in that fashion. He knew that those who cried
"Hosanna" and welcomed him as their king could cry out, "Crucify
him!" a week later. So Jesus will do his ministry based on God's
timing and his own heart of obedience. He will submit to the Father
and honor him at great personal cost. Why? Because he wasn't trying
to win the crowds approval. Instead, he was willing to pay any price
so the fickle masses could find a real Savior and not another power
hungry tinhorn messiah.

Thank you, O God, for your Son's faithfulness. Thank you, Lord
Jesus, for your willingness to bear the crowd's scorn and not give in
to the crowd's fickle approval. I know you did it to honor your
Father and to provide for me, in your own body, the perfect sacrifice
for my sin. How can I not praise you with all my heart? To you, and
through your holy name, I offer my thanks and praise. Amen.

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TODAY'S VERSE from HEARTLIGHT -- http://www.heartlight.org/

February 8, 2002

[Jesus said,] "You have heard that it was said, 'Love your
neighbor and hate your enemy.' But I tell you: Love your enemies
and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be sons of your
Father in heaven."
-- Matthew 5:43-45

We often talk about the privileges of being a child of God -
forgiveness, salvation, a future in heaven with him, the gift of
the Holy Spirit, and ultimate victory when Christ comes. One of
the greatest privileges we get, however, is the opportunity to act
toward those who dislike and hate us in a way that reflects the
character of God himself. Anyone can return hate for hate, but it
takes a child of God to return a blessing and a prayer for his or
her enemies.

Father, thank you for loving me when I was still an enemy to
you. Thank you for risking the death of your Son to offer me the
chance to accept or reject your love. As you have promised, please
pour your love into my heart so I may love even my enemies as you
have loved me. In the name of your ultimate Gift of love, Jesus
Christ, I pray. Amen.