Posts Tagged ‘salvation’

The Father’s Love

June 7, 2011

“The LORD your God is with you,
he is mighty to save.
He will take great delight in you,
he will quiet you with his love,
he will rejoice over you with singing.”

– Zephaniah 3:17

Isaiah’s Economic Recovery Plan

October 18, 2008

“The kind of fasting I want calls you to free those who are wrongly imprisoned and to stop oppressing those who work for you.  Treat them fairly and give them what they earn.  I want you to share your food with the hungry and to welcome poor wanderers into your homes.  Give clothes to those who need them, and do not hide from relatives who need your help.

If you do these things, your salvation will come like the dawn.  Yes, your healing will come quickly.  Your godliness will lead you forward, and the glory of the Lord will protect you from behind.  Then when you call, the Lord will answer.  ‘Yes, I am here,’ he will quickly reply.

Stop oppressing the helpless and stop making false accusations and spreading vicious rumors!  Feed the hungry and help those in trouble.  Then your light will shine out from the darkness, and the darkness around you will be as bright as day.”

– Isaiah 58:6-10 (NLT)

Salvation

February 12, 2008

“Salvation involves the whole person, body and soul. Salvation also includes the restoration of wholesome community among Christians. Its effects spill over into the entire social order…

No amount of good deeds in noble social action can earn divine forgiveness. The only way to enter Jesus’ kingdom is by accepting it as a gift (Luke 12:32). But kingdom people embrace kingdom values. Sixteen times the New Testament calls Jesus Savior. Four hundred times it calls him Lord.

We will not receive Christ’s unmerited forgiveness if we persist in rejecting him as Lord of our whole lives. We must ‘work out’ our salvation through lifelong discipleship that pursues purity and justice (Phil. 2:12). The God who made us for community insists that a right relationship with God is inseparable from right relationships with our neighbors.”

– Ron Sider in Churches That Make A Difference: Reaching Your Community With Good News and Good Works

Anna the Prophet: An Advent Reflection

December 2, 2007

Anna’s wedding day must have been a joyous occasion, a most important day in the life of a young Jewish woman. And she almost certainly would have married as a young teenager, according to the custom of her day. It was the hope of every Jewish maiden to marry and bear children. But Anna had been chosen by God for a unique purpose. Luke tells us that she was a prophet, gifted with special wisdom and insight. Did her husband realize what a treasure God had given him?

After only seven years of marriage, Anna’s husband died. Her world was torn apart. She was only in her twenties and already a widow. Anna could have become bitter and angry at God for allowing this tragedy in her life, but instead she let her suffering draw her closer to God. Believing in God’s special purpose for her life, she devoted herself to serving him.

For many decades, Anna lived in the Temple, spending her days in fasting and prayer. She lived in a time of great political upheaval and religious corruption, yet she faithfully interceded for her people, trusting in God’s promise of a Messiah. Throughout the year, Jewish families came to Jerusalem to offer sacrifices and celebrate religious holidays. Year after year, they saw Anna serving in the Temple; she had been there as long as most people could remember and they admired her devotion.

By the time she reached eighty-four years old, Anna’s physical health had no doubt deteriorated, but her spiritual senses were keen and sharp. A lifetime of diligently seeking the Lord had made her uniquely sensitive to his leading. Anna was a woman devoted to prayer, not just talking to the Lord, but listening to his voice. Like Enoch and Elijah before her, Anna truly walked with God. That is why when a certain young couple came to the Temple to dedicate their infant son, she knew immediately that this was no ordinary child.

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