My posts come from my personal daily scripture readings and a part of my personal accountability. If we are going to grow as followers of Christ, we must be in the Word! If you miss these a few days, something has kept me from it; but if they're gone for too many days, call me on the carpet. We need to hold one another accountable. Join me on this journey as our lives are to Reflect the Image-and Jesus IS the image. Peace, Carla Sunberg
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Encourage A Friend
2Cor. 7:5 For even when we came into Macedonia, our bodies had no rest, but we were afflicted in every way—disputes without and fears within. 6 But God, who consoles the downcast, consoled us by the arrival of Titus, 7 and not only by his coming, but also by the consolation with which he was consoled about you, as he told us of your longing, your mourning, your zeal for me, so that I rejoiced still more.
Paul had sent a rather stinging letter to the church in Corinth and was feeling badly about it. At the same time he was traveling in Macedonia and feeling a lot of tension. There were those among the believers who were struggling as well as persecutions from those who were not believers. It’s at this moment that Titus appears and brings relief to a difficult time.
Titus’ arrival ushers in change for both Paul and Titus. Their friendship is revealed and cemented in what follows. Titus had been greatly encouraged by the response of the church in Corinth and so he was coming with an encouraged heart. Paul was so glad that Titus was feeling better about the ministry and this, in turn made Paul feel better. He was happy about Titus, and also about what was happening in Corinth. It warmed Paul’s heart to hear that the Corinthians still loved and appreciated him. Paul’s relationship with Titus had moved up to a new level as Paul publicly acknowledged what a blessing Titus had been to him.
Thanks Nancy and Wanda for driving hours just to be an encouragement!
One of the greatest blessings in life is to have someone come to your defense. It’s no fun to end up taking the heat for something and end up hanging out there all by yourself. It’s so easy to be critical, especially on social media. Engaging in personal and character assassination seems far too easy when we are disconnected from one another emotionally. Knowing that our words might just break someone’s heart could make a world a difference.
Paul went out of his way to acknowledge Titus’ action in writing. What an encouragement this must have been to him. When’s the last time we affirmed one of our friends and what they mean to us? Life is hard enough that we don’t need to be looking for ways to be critical of one another. Always try to look for the best in another person and when you have the opportunity, brag on them publicly. It’s time to build-up the family!
Lord, thank you for the friends you have placed in my life. May we partner together in serve to you. Amen.
Rom. 6:22 But now that you have been freed from sin and enslaved to God, the advantage you get is sanctification. The end is eternal life. Rom. 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Two sides of life are presented here in great contrast. One is a life of sin and enslavement to evil. The other side of life is freedom which provides the advantage of sanctification (or holiness as some translate the word) that leads to eternal life. The options here are a life of sin, slavery and death; or freedom, holiness and eternal life.
The advantage of holiness or sanctification is the benefit of the life of freedom. Jesus died so that we might be made holy like him and this is something that is offered as a “fruit” or “advantage” right now. The end is eternal life — but the living of life is that it can be lived out in holiness.
The next verse is really just an affirmation of the verse 22. Sin will lead …
Scripture: Mark 8:31 Then he began to teach them that the Son of Man must undergo great suffering, and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again. 32 He said all this quite openly. And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. 33 But turning and looking at his disciples, he rebuked Peter and said, “Get behind me, Satan! For you are setting your mind not on divine things but on human things.” Observation:
Peter had openly declared that Jesus was the Messiah when suddenly the conversation shifted to suffering, rejection and death. With his affirmation of Jesus as Messiah, Peter had brought with him all of the connotations of that term. Jesus was to be a great military leader, a Davidic Messiah, who would save the people from the earthly authorities. Jesus’ description was a paradigm that didn’t fit into Peter’s thinking.
Peter’s rebuke of Jesus was severe. The language reflects a long and unpleasant conversation. The…
Scripture: Rev. 3:14 “And to the angel of the church in Laodicea write: The words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the origin of God’s creation: Rev. 3:15 “I know your works; you are neither cold nor hot. I wish that you were either cold or hot. 16 So, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I am about to spit you out of my mouth. 17 For you say, ‘I am rich, I have prospered, and I need nothing.’ You do not realize that you are wretched, pitiable, poor, blind, and naked. 18 Therefore I counsel you to buy from me gold refined by fire so that you may be rich; and white robes to clothe you and to keep the shame of your nakedness from being seen; and salve to anoint your eyes so that you may see. 19 I reprove and discipline those whom I love. Be earnest, therefore, and repent. 20 Listen! I am standing at the door, knocking; if you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in to you and eat with you, and you with me. 21 To the one who conquers I will give a plac…