Saturday, October 8, 2016 Heart Transplant
Reading: Matthew 21:23-22:46
“Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.”
Jesus turned questions into teaching opportunities. His listeners and we, readers, are the beneficiaries. What is the greatest commandment? Jesus gave us the greatest and the second greatest commandments. Any conscientious person will recognize that these two commandments, though simple, are not easy. In fact, to do them perfectly is impossible.
But Jesus gave something else. He gave Himself, not long after teaching this truth to the crowds. His death paid for our failure to perfectly keep those great commandments. He sent His Spirit to change our hearts to believe and repent and to trust Him for forgiveness and life. Have you had a spiritual heart transplant? Call on the Lord today for mercy and grace to believe. Confess your failures to keep the two great commandments and put your faith in the One who died for the sins of His people.
Sunday, October 9, 2016 Warnings to Church Leaders
Reading: Matthew 23:1-24:51
Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples, “The scribes and the Pharisees sit on Moses’ seat, so do and observe whatever they tell you, but not the works they do. For they preach, but do not practice.
Church leaders are held to the highest standards. Not only must their teaching conform to God’s Word but their lives must as well. Pray for those in leadership that they may both talk the talk and walk that talk.
See you again on Monday.
[For reflections on these passages, see the corresponding readings in my book Cover to Cover: Through the Bible in 365 days].
[Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture references are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Permanent Text Edition® (2016). Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.]