Tuesday, November 24, 2020
Word for the Week

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‘Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?’ (Acts 19:1-7). The resultant coming of the Holy Spirit was a seal upon what the Ephesian believers had just done in committing themselves to Jesus Christ. First they believed, then they were baptised and then the Spirit came upon them, authenticating their experience. We might ask…

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One of the most stirring missionary reports published in recent years is Jackie Pullinger’s Chasing the Dragon. It tells the moving, exciting story of a young English woman who was rejected by missionary councils and went alone and unsupported to the slums of Hong Kong. Two things really stand out. One is the reinvigorating strength…

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Love is a great boost to self-confidence. In one of his best-known statements, John writes, ‘There is no fear in love’ (1 John 4:18). This means that we have confidence before God. We can approach him boldly and without shame, because we know that his love has covered our sins through the death of Christ…

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Love is a powerful quality. We are more likely to receive answers to prayer when we love. This applies to our ability to forgive one another. Have faith in God… I tell you the truth, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart but…

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A friend of mine used to preach a sermon entitled, ‘I want my flowers before I die.’ Just before he stood up to preach, he would slip a wreath of flowers around his neck. Then he would preach the whole sermon wearing the wreath. It was an unforgettable message. Its theme was simple. Why wait…

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It is a fascinating exercise to read 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 and to replace the word ‘love’ with ‘Jesus’. The result is a fine character description of our Lord. Jesus is patient, Jesus is kind, Jesus does not envy, Jesus does not boast, Jesus is not proud, Jesus is not rude, Jesus is not self-seeking, Jesus…

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In his delightful book, Faith Hope and Hilarity, Dick Van Dyke tells of a little boy in Philadelphia who was asked to write his favourite biblical truth on the blackboard. He wrote, ‘Do one to others as others do one to you.’ This was not quite what Jesus meant when he said: ‘In everything do…

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When we bring our thinking into line, our loving can also be brought into line. (Read Mark 12:29-31.) In our relationships with people, how we think about them determines how well we love them. We can dwell on people’s offences, or injustices that have been done to us or the nastiness of their attitude or…

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Once when Jesus’ opponents were trying to catch him out, one of them was so impressed with his answers that he asked what seems to have been a genuine question, ‘Of all the commandments, which is the most important?’  Jesus answered, ‘The most important one is this: “Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the…

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Agape, God’s kind of love, is unconditional. C. S. Lewis describes it in these terms: ‘Divine Gift-love…is wholly disinterested and desires what is simply best for the beloved.’ Not uninterested, but disinterested. With no desire for personal gain or benefit. The whole object of agape is the welfare of the one who receives love. This…

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