June 5, 2017: The Way of Peace
June 5, 2017
TODAY'S BIBLE READING:
Today’s Bible Reading: Luke 1:67-80, Ephesians 3:1-13, Psalm 119:33-40, 1 Kings 8 Luke 1:67-80: Now is Zechariah’s song, and it is structured around the “visitation” (1:68, 78) that Zechariah saw that God was bringing about through his prophet John, and was in fulfillment of the Old Testament promises and prophecies (Genesis 50:24, 25). Christ shall be a “horn of salvation” (1:69: 1 Samuel 2:1 / 2:10). It is fulfillment of the promises given to Abraham: Christ is the fulfillment of Genesis 12:1-3. His ministry will lead to a time when God’s people can serve God “without fear” (1:74)—that is without the trembling anxiety that comes from being in the “hand of our enemies” (1:74). John himself is not the Messiah; instead his ministry is to “go before the Lord to prepare his ways” in fulfillment of Malachi 3:1. All this expresses the “tender mercy of our God,” to give knowledge of salvation to his people “in the forgiveness of their sins” (1:77). Zechariah spoke as “filled with the Holy Spirit” (1:67), and John grew and became strong in spirit and was in the wilderness until the day of his public appearance. Note that to be filled with the Spirit leads to speaking God’s Word. The Sword of the Spirit is the Word of God. He who would separate the Spirit from the Word would as soon separate speech from breath. The two belong together always. Note also that to be filled with the Spirit is to point people to Christ. The work of the Spirit, and those filled with the Spirit like Zechariah and John, is to prepare people to receive the Lord, that is Jesus Christ. Note that the central work of God when he visits us with renewal and fresh peace and strength is to save us by the forgiveness of our sins, and that is the central point of Jesus Christ’s ministry. All else comes to this: that we would be saved by having our sins forgiven. Note that then light shines: light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death. When we receive Christ, we no longer are in darkness, we understand where we came from and where we are going, we understand the point and purpose of our lives, and therefore we are now free to serve Him without fear and instead walking in the “way of peace” (1:79). Would you this morning ask God to fill you with his Spirit that you might prize and treasure His Word and come to Christ for forgiveness of your sins, so that your life might walk down the path of peace now for evermore! To receive God Centered Bible devotionals directly in your inbox, sign up here.]]>
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Josh Moody (Ph.D., University of Cambridge) is the senior pastor of College Church in Wheaton, IL., president and founder of God Centered Life Ministries, and author of several books including How the Bible Can Change Your Life and John 1-12 For You.
To receive God Centered Life devotionals directly in your inbox, as well as other resources, enter your email address in the form at the bottom of this page and click "subscribe."