These days, it seems being a bold witness for the gospel of Jesus Christ is no longer fashionable. Hearing the message that salvation comes only through Christ Jesus is difficult for some. For many others, it is the faithful response God demands that throws so many over the edge.
Earthly powers do not want to hear a message about denying one’s self, or being least of all and servant of all. The more popular trend consists of a gospel of prosperity, one with the message that with enough positive thought, a blessed life filled wealth and happiness is attainable. Such worldly thinking permeates popular culture and those who take a stand upon traditionally grounded Christian doctrine are cast in unfavorable light. Simply put, the world hates them.
On the night he was handed over, Jesus prays for his disciples, and for all who come to faith through their witness. Jesus knows that the powers that defy God will defy those sent to proclaim the gospel. Therefore, Jesus prays for Peter, John, James, and also for us. It is great comfort knowing that even as he gave himself for our sake, Jesus prays for the wellbeing of all who have life through him.
Prayer: Guard and protect us, O God, that we may proclaim your goodness and mercy through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Today’s devotion was written by David Nuottila, Pastor of Union Lutheran Church in Salisbury, NC.