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About-Him Devotional 06-21-03
The life of Christ, from His baptism to His ascension, following the Harmony of the Gospels.
79: The Twelve Ordained - Mt. 10:1-4; Mk. 3:13-19; Lu. 6:12-16
Matthew 10:1 And when he had called unto him his twelve disciples, he gave them power against unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease.
The list of the twelve whom Jesus initially ordained as apostles are found in Matthew, Mark and Luke. Each begins with Peter and ends with Judas Iscariot. Luke, for whatever reason, fails to mention Thaddaeus. Peter, Andrew, James, John and Nathanael (also known as Bartholomew) had been chosen by Jesus when He first began His ministry and Matthew was chosen shortly thereafter.
After a night of prayer on a mountain, Jesus expanded the list to twelve and gave them power to cast out devils and to heal the sick. Among these were Thomas, Simon the Zealot, James the Lesser, and of course the infamous Judas.
Eleven of these men were destined to turn the world upside down as witnesses to the resurrection and all except John are believed to have been martyred for the gospel. Judas Iscariot was to become a traitor.
Conclusion and application:
Jesus chose the men who would establish His church and be pillars of God's kingdom on earth, only after spending the night alone in prayer. We would save ourselves a lot of grief if we followed His example.
The gospels give us contrasting character sketches of some of these chosen men. Boisterous Peter, fiery James and John, doubting Thomas, Andrew quick to believe, Phillip slow to learn, Nathanael the deep thinker, Matthew the tax collector and Simon Zealotes the tax protestor.
We are all different, and yet we all compliment each other for the furtherance of the kingdom.
We are placed in the kingdom as it has pleased the Lord. Whether we are first or last matters very little. There is a day coming when our works and motives will be judged and perhaps our ranking will change, hopefully for the better.
Matthew 19:30 But many that are first shall be last; and the last shall be first.
80: The Sermon on the Mount - Mt. Chs. 5-7; Lu. 6:20-49
Please see The Sermon on the Mount for an overview of the whole sermon.
A simple and yet profound sermon from the lips of the Master explaining to us the requirements of the law. To some it is an unobtainable ideal. However because of the righteousness of God which is given to us by the Holy Ghost, we have the power to live it. Not our righteousness, but the righteousness of God by faith in Christ Jesus.
Jesus stresses a life of simple faith and total reliance on Him. We are to lay up our treasure in heaven and let Him take care of our daily needs, just as He does for the raven and lilies of the field.
We are not to judge others. Most of all, Jesus stresses simply being a servant. If we build our house on His foundation, it will stand against the trials of this life.
Next Week: The Centurion's Servant Healed
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A soft answer turns away wrath, but grievous words stir up anger - King Solomon
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Don & Marie Spooner
About Him! Ministries
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