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Holy Ought

Daily Reading: Acts 13

Scripture Focus: I have made you a light for the Gentiles, that you may bring salvation to the ends of the earth. (Acts 13.47)

Devotional Thought: Do you have a sense of "holy ought"? The Apostles Paul and Barnabas did. In Acts 13, Paul was preaching to the Jews in the synagogue. The Jews had rejected him and the message of Christ. They were jealous over Paul's success in ministry. Paul made a bold move. He applied Old Testament scriptures - meant for the people of Israel - to himself! As he later would write to the Corinthians, "Woe to me if I do not preach the gospel!" (1 Corinthians 9.16)

Paul had been a jealous Jew at one point, too. Until, that is, Jesus Christ appeared to him on the road to Damascus. From that time forward, Paul was compelled to preach the gospel, to proclaim Jesus as the Messiah. God had made him a light for the Gentiles. God had called him to bring salvation to the ends of the earth.

The same thing is true of all of us. When we meet Jesus on the road of life, he not only brings us salvation, he sends us with salvation that we may bring it to others. Jesus fills us with his Spirit in order for us to be witnesses (Acts 1.8). He commissions us to make disciples (Matthew 28.18-20). He sends us to preach the gospel to the whole world (Mark 16.15). He authorizes us to cast out demons, dispel darkness, and heal the broken.

But, does my life shine the light of his love to those around me? Am I ready to share the reason for the hope that I have? (Do people see me as a person of hope?) In short, do I have a sense of "holy ought"?

Prayer: Thank you, Lord, for saving me and for making me a light for those in darkness. Help me to bring news of your salvation to all whom I encounter today. Amen.

Psalm of the Day: Psalm 69.13-21

13 But as for me, my prayer is to you, O Lord. At an acceptable time, O God, in the abundance of your steadfast love answer me in your saving faithfulness. 14 Deliver me from sinking in the mire; let me be delivered from my enemies and from the deep waters. 15 Let not the flood sweep over me, or the deep swallow me up, or the pit close its mouth over me.

16 Answer me, O Lord, for your steadfast love is good; according to your abundant mercy, turn to me. 17 Hide not your face from your servant, for I am in distress; make haste to answer me. 18 Draw near to my soul, redeem me; ransom me because of my enemies!

19 You know my reproach, and my shame and my dishonor; my foes are all known to you. 20 Reproaches have broken my heart, so that I am in despair. I looked for pity, but there was none, and for comforters, but I found none. 21 They gave me poison for food, and for my thirst they gave me sour wine to drink.

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