Weekly Devotion - Nov 15, 2017

“I have said these things to you in figures of speech. The hour is coming when I will no longer speak to you in figures of speech but will tell you plainly about the Father. In that day you will ask in my name, and I do not say to you that I will ask the Father on your behalf; for the Father himself loves you, because you have loved me and have believed that I came from God.” (John 16:25-27)

Scripture Reading – Colossians 1:9-23

To accomplish the works that Jesus wants us to do means we will need to obey His Word and walk with Him in fellowship through prayer. Once Jesus rises from the dead, and the Spirit is given on the Day of Pentecost, all believers will understand His Word and communicate to God through prayer. After the Resurrection, Jesus appeared to His followers on the road to Emmaus, “and beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning himself” (Luke 24:27). Jesus took these followers through God’s plan of redemption as expressed through Moses and the Prophets so that they would understand that the Messiah had to die and rise again. No longer were the mysteries of the kingdom of God hidden from Jesus’ disciples. They were to know God’s Word so they would be able to obey it fully. Likewise, the gospel that we bring to the world is not one that is misunderstood or misinterpreted. Jesus continues to instruct His disciples through the Word.

It’s not only the full understanding of the Word that Jesus is giving to us; He’s also giving us the authority to ask the Father to glorify Himself through our witness. This is an incredible privilege. As disciples, we no longer need to ask Jesus to intercede for us. We can now ask the Father directly. When we pray, we can approach the Father on the basis of Christ’s authority. The Father gave all authority to Christ at His Resurrection (Matt. 28:18), therefore we can bring our requests to the Father and He will answer us.

We can understand God’s Word, and know that our requests will be answered not because of our righteousness, but because of our faith in Christ. We are no longer enemies of God. Now, we have become His children. Think about it, children always have access to their father not because of their goodness, but because of their relationship with their father, and because their father loves them. Christ’s death did not just end the hostility between God and us, but fully reconciled our relationship to Him. Now the Father loves us.

This reconciled relationship with God is the strength of our proclamation. When we have trials because of our faith and testimony, we can know that God will actively defend us. For example, a boss may decide that an employee is expendable, a sultan may decide that a slave can be traded, but a father is always protecting his children. In the same way, our heavenly Father is sending us out into a hostile world to bear witness, yet He is also with us. In the midst of our sorrows, we can remember that our Father loves us and is working for us.

Through the power of the Holy Spirit, God has given us His presence. He has also given us the tools to access His resources in times of difficulty. When trials come, we need to spend more time in His Word because it is a lamp for our way. God’s Word will show us how to walk so we will not fall into the snares of our enemies. Prayer is also important. Jesus spent long periods in prayer so that He would be faithful to do all that the Father had assigned Him. As we fellowship with God, we too will receive His wisdom to respond to trials as they arise, and we will receive boldness as we proclaim the Good News. The importance of the Word and prayer are evident throughout Jesus’ life and instructions to His disciples. They are the ways we abide in Christ and do even His greater works. Are you diligently studying the Word and praying?

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