Thursday, March 23, 2017

Jesus Wept

John 11:30-37 (HCSB)
30 Jesus had not yet come into the village but was still in the place where Martha had met Him.
31 The Jews who were with her in the house consoling her saw that Mary got up quickly and went out. So they followed her, supposing that she was going to the tomb to cry there.
32 When Mary came to where Jesus was and saw Him, she fell at His feet and told Him, “Lord, if You had been here, my brother would not have died!”
33 When Jesus saw her crying, and the Jews who had come with her crying, He was angry in His spirit and deeply moved.
34 “Where have you put him?” He asked. “Lord,” they told Him, “come and see.”
35 Jesus wept.
36 So the Jews said, “See how He loved him!”
37 But some of them said, “Couldn’t He who opened the blind man’s eyes also have kept this man from dying?”

Lazarus died and Jesus waited for three days before going to his home. He was very good friends with Lazarus, Mary and Martha. They had seen the miracles that Jesus had performed. Mary and Martha knew that if Jesus had been there he could have healed Lazarus so he would not have died.

Jesus might have been sorrowful for the death of Lazarus and that would have shown His human side. But if He knew that He was going to raise Lazarus from the dead why would He be so sorrowful as to weep? The verses above tell us that He was angry in spirit and deeply moved. Why is this? Why would He be angry in this case? This can be answered with one word:

UNBELIEF

These people did not fully believe in what Jesus could do. This at first made Him angry then made Him so sad that He wept.

Near the time of Jesus’ crucifixion He wept over Jerusalem because of the unbelief in that city. Many people there had seen what He had done but did not believe He was the Messiah.

Could Jesus be weeping now as he sees what is going on in this world at this time? Does he weep; when we say, “I know the Lord can do thus and so.” But don’t believe he will do it for us? Does he weep when he hears us say that you have to follow certain steps to have him do a miracle for you? We need to believe that Jesus Christ can work and does work in His time and in His way.

May we say, like the father of the demoniac:

Mark 9:24 (HCSB)
24 Immediately the father of the boy cried out, “I do believe! Help my unbelief.”

by Dean W. Masters

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

A Call for Anger

Ephesians 4:26

INTRODUCTION

Interestingly, the Lord actually commands His people to be angry! This may surprise or concern some believers who fail to study the entirety of scripture within context, but the Lord admonished believers at Ephesus to be angry. No doubt this was a call for a righteous anger with a cause, but nonetheless it was a call for anger. Why? The Bible points out that a godly anger can put a stop to sin. According to Proverbs 25:23, “The north wind driveth away rain: so doth an angry countenance a backbiting tongue.” This directly correlates to the context of Ephesians 4:26 as the surrounding passages speak of ceasing from sin. Simultaneous to the Lord admonishing believers to be angry, He also cautioned them not to let their righteous anger turn into sin.

DEVOTIONAL THOUGHTS

  • (For children): Nehemiah displayed a godly anger. He drove out Tobiah (an enemy) from the chamber in the house of God, restored the Levites and singers to their proper place in the temple, and stopped those who were working on the sabbath day (Nehemiah 13:7-22).
  • (For everyone): Why would God warn about anger in one verse and encourage anger in another? What kind of anger does God approve? What kind of anger does He disapprove?
  • How could righteous anger turn to sin (Ephesians 4:26)? How could righteous anger eventually give place to the Devil (Ephesians 4:27)?

PRAYER NEEDS

  • Ask God to help you be angry as He guides.
  • Ask the Lord for a scriptural balance on anger.

HYMN

I AM RESOLVED