Sunday, March 5, 2017

The Readings for SUNDAY, March 5, 2017 - 1st Sunday in Lent (Invocavit Sunday)


The Old Testament Lesson

The Old Testament Lesson for today is taken from Genesis 2:15-17; 3:1-7

The LORD God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to till it and keep it. And the LORD God commanded the man, "You may freely eat of every tree of the garden; but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall die." Now the serpent was more crafty than any other wild animal that the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, "Did God say, 'You shall not eat from any tree in the garden'?" The woman said to the serpent, "We may eat of the fruit of the trees in the garden; but God said, 'You shall not eat of the fruit of the tree that is in the middle of the garden, nor shall you touch it, or you shall die.'" But the serpent said to the woman, "You will not die; for God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil." So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate; and she also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate. Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together and made loincloths for themselves.

This is the Word of the Lord
Thanks be to God


Psalms

Psalm 32 Beati quorum
1   Happy are they whose transgressions are forgiven, and whose sin is put away!
2   Happy are they to whom the LORD imputes no guilt, and in whose spirit there is no guile!
3   While I held my tongue, my bones withered away, because of my groaning all day long.
4   For your hand was heavy upon me day and night; my moisture was dried up as in the heat of summer.
5   Then I acknowledged my sin to you, and did not conceal my guilt.
6   I said, "I will confess my transgressions to the LORD." Then you forgave me the guilt of my sin.
7   Therefore all the faithful will make their prayers to you in time of trouble; when the great waters overflow, they shall not reach them.
8   You are my hiding-place; you preserve me from trouble; you surround me with shouts of deliverance.
9   I will instruct you and teach you in the way that you should go; I will guide you with my eye.
10   Do not be like horse or mule, which have no understanding; who must be fitted with bit and bridle, or else they will not stay near you."
11   Great are the tribulations of the wicked; but mercy embraces those who trust in the LORD.
12   Be glad, you righteous, and rejoice in the LORD; shout for joy, all who are true of heart.


The Epistle Lesson

The Epistle Lesson for today is taken from Romans 5:12-19

Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death came through sin, and so death spread to all because all have sinned-- sin was indeed in the world before the law, but sin is not reckoned when there is no law. Yet death exercised dominion from Adam to Moses, even over those whose sins were not like the transgression of Adam, who is a type of the one who was to come. But the free gift is not like the trespass. For if the many died through the one man's trespass, much more surely have the grace of God and the free gift in the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, abounded for the many. And the free gift is not like the effect of the one man's sin. For the judgment following one trespass brought condemnation, but the free gift following many trespasses brings justification. If, because of the one man's trespass, death exercised dominion through that one, much more surely will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness exercise dominion in life through the one man, Jesus Christ. Therefore just as one man's trespass led to condemnation for all, so one man's act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all. For just as by the one man's disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man's obedience the many will be made righteous.

This is the Word of the Lord
Thanks be to God


The Holy Gospel Lesson

The Holy Gospel is written in Matthew 4:1-11
Glory be to Thee, O Lord


Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. He fasted forty days and forty nights, and afterwards he was famished. The tempter came and said to him, "If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread." But he answered, "It is written, 'One does not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.'" Then the devil took him to the holy city and placed him on the pinnacle of the temple, saying to him, "If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down; for it is written, 'He will command his angels concerning you,' and 'On their hands they will bear you up, so that you will not dash your foot against a stone.'" Jesus said to him, "Again it is written, 'Do not put the Lord your God to the test.'" Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor; and he said to him, "All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me." Jesus said to him, "Away with you, Satan! for it is written, 'Worship the Lord your God, and serve only him.'" Then the devil left him, and suddenly angels came and waited on him.

Here ends the Gospel lesson for today.
Glory be to Thee ,O Christ!


The Apostle's Creed

I believe in God, the Father Almighty,
Maker of heaven and earth.
And in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,
born of the virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died and was buried.
He descended into hell.
On the third day He rose again from the dead.
He ascended into heaven
and sits at the right hand of God the Father Almighty.
From thence He will come to judge the living and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic Church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting. Amen.


New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. The New Revised Standard Version Bible may be quoted and/or reprinted up to and inclusive of five hundred (500) verses without express written permission of the publisher, provided the verses quoted do not amount to a complete book of the Bible or account for fifty percent (50%) of the total work in which they are quoted.

"Temptation" - The Sermon for SUNDAY, March 5, 2017 - 1st Sunday in Lent (Invocavit Sunday)

Jesus Tempted in the Wilderness -
Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. He fasted forty days and forty nights, and afterwards he was famished. The tempter came and said to him, "If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread." But he answered, "It is written, 'One does not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.'" Then the devil took him to the holy city and placed him on the pinnacle of the temple, saying to him, "If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down; for it is written, 'He will command his angels concerning you,' and 'On their hands they will bear you up, so that you will not dash your foot against a stone.'" Jesus said to him, "Again it is written, 'Do not put the Lord your God to the test.'" Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor; and he said to him, "All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me." Jesus said to him, "Away with you, Satan! for it is written, 'Worship the Lord your God, and serve only him.'" Then the devil left him, and suddenly angels came and waited on him. (Matthew 4:1-11)

"Temptation"

What is a sinner? Let me repeat that question, what is a sinner? Pascal says: "There are only two kinds of people, the righteous who believe themselves a sinner and the sinner who believes themselves righteous". Mary Wilson Little put it this way, "People who make no pretensions of being good one day out of the week are known as sinners." Or as Oscar Wilde says, "Nothing makes one so vain as being told that one is a sinner."

Or here is what another person says about a sinner as he looked at his own life. "I often find I have the will to do good, but not the power. That is, I don’t accomplish the good things that I set out to do, and the evil things that I don’t want to do, I find I’m always doing. Yet, if I do the things that I don’t really want to do, then it is not I, repeat, it is not I that do them, but it is my own nature in which I am a slave to sin and death. It’s an agonizing situation, a constant conflicts and who on earth can free me from the clutches of my own sinful nature?" That was St. Paul writing to the Romans about his own struggle with sin.

The first couple of people, I quoted about sin made it seem like something one could easily brush off, like water dripping off of a duck’s back. Sin was not taken seriously in their lives. But I think Paul said it best, sin is something that affects a person’s whole being. It is not something that can be brushed off very easily. It doesn’t work that way. You know it and I know it. Everyone of us labors under the terrible weight of guilt and sin. We feel guilty about the wrongs we have done, the hurts we have caused others, and at the same time, we feel guilty about those things we should have done, but didn’t do. For example, maybe we needed to apologize to someone, but were too proud. Or, maybe, we couldn’t express forgiveness to another, because of the hatred that filled our heart. Or maybe, it was the hurt we said to a loved one and after realizing what we had done, we couldn’t or wouldn’t say we were sorry. Or maybe we are guilty of not including the stranger, the new person to town in our circle of friends. Sin is more than what we have done wrong, it is also as our confessional service says: those things we have left undone.

In the scheme of life, we sin against not only people, or creation, when we are not good stewards, but finally all sin is a sin against God Himself. In "Rejoice and Realize"--written by Richard Hoefler, he says --"When we sin we do not break a law; we break our Father’s heart. God grieves when we sin against him, but he does not disown us. The certainty of our status in the family of a loving Father is found all through the New Testament and is Paul’s central message as seen especially in Romans 8:31-39".

Also, our gospel lesson today, the temptation of Jesus in the wilderness is a clear example of the love God has for us as we face all the brownness of this world. For, I think, all the gospel writers included this story of the temptation of Jesus as a way of showing us, as clearly as possible, that God understands the human condition in which we live. We live in a fallen world. There is sin and brokenness all around. He even had His only Son tempted in the wilderness as a clear indication of His comprehension of the difficulties we face day in and day out.

Many times this temptation story of Jesus seems far removed from our world, our life. On the surface we have a difficult time relating to these temptations, turning stones into bread, or jumping off the highest part of the temple and having God’s angels catch you, or being placed on a very high mountain so that you could see the whole world, then having the Devil giving you a chance of owning it all. That is far removed from the sins we face day in and day out. However, I would like to suggest this morning as we look at just one of these temptations, it is in the subtlety of these temptations where we really find ourselves and see the real craftiness of the Devil and sin.

The first temptation speaks of turning stones into bread. As Jesus sits in the dessert his stomach is empty; He hasn’t eaten for 40 days, his throat is parched. The devil approaches, and I don’t believe he was the red horned person with a pitch fork we dream of, he was more subtle, more inventive, he was in actuality, the voice of reason in Jesus’ mind and ear. Maybe he said, " Jesus, sir, you look like you are having a rough time. By the way, you are the Son of God, right? So, why don’t you turn all of these stones into bread? Not just for yourself, for I know you are a loving and compassionate person,---but for all the starving people of the world. They need you. They need this food. They need the power you possess. Give them what they want, what they need, give them food. And then you would be their hero. They would follow you anywhere."

Think about that for a moment. That doesn’t sound too diabolical, does it? Feed the world, take care of the hungry, that is a noble cause. The temptation wasn’t in the act so much as in the attitude, the motivation. Jesus was tempted to take the easy way, a short cut, if you will, to by pass God’s natural order of things. Instead of growing food, just change stones into bread. That is the essence of all of these temptations, to take the easy way, to by pass God’s plan, God’s order to life. Turn stone into bread, jump off the temple, show the people a great magic act, then they will follow. Be the ruler of the whole world, bring peace, bring justice, bring love, but in reality it is the easy way, the way that leaves God out of the picture. Leaving God out of the picture is what sin is all about.

The temptations of Jesus are not so far removed from our lives, if we think of them as leaving God out of the picture of life and you controlling your life. Control, power, accountability, those are the sins of our lives. We like to pretend, to play games with each other and with God that we are not as bad, or as unrighteous, or as unholy as someone else we can point a finger at, as we sit in the smugness of our own sin and pride. Living life my way is the call words for many people. One of the fast food chains had a slogan a few years back, saying,"Have it your way!!" or maybe some will remember Frank Sinatra’s hit song, "I did it my way!!" Isn’t there a lot of theological truth in those two lines.?? You and I like to have things our own way. We want to take God out of the picture of our lives. We want to control and run our lives our way. But many times, no, all the time, we do not live up to our potential, our goals, our vision of what we want for ourselves, so then we become angry, we lash out, maybe at God, maybe at a loved one, maybe at ourselves. We want control, but when we think we have it, we are in all reality out of control, because we are like Paul as he say: "That is, I don’t accomplish the good things that I set out to do, and the evil things that I don’t want to do, I find I’m always doing."

In the situation we find ourselves, two thing can happen, we can become like the man in the following:

"A young said this about his life. It seems like I was a man trying to climb out of a muddy, clinging swamp and every time I just about reached the solid bank, someone would come along, put his foot in my face and push me back into the mud. And so, finally, I decided to stay in the swamp. And what the heck, I have a lot of company." We can live a broken and desperate life, never finding our true self, never being happy with who we are or what we are doing. Life can be one big swampy mud pit. We can be constantly moving, thrashing, climbing out of the mud pit.

Or we can surrender our lives over to God and allow Him to recreate us. We can put God back into the picture of our lives.

Our lesson from Genesis this morning is the story of creation, how God turned dust and mud into a human being. When God is in the picture mud is changed. The difference between God and us is seen in the mud. God molded the mud, blew on it and created life. We mold the mud, blow on it, and end up with---mud. We like to play God. We like to pretend that we are as wise and powerful as God. But we still end up with mud.

However, our mud pies, so to speak, our lives, get so complex than even when we think we are allowing God to control our lives, He isn’t. The following poem was written in the poetry section of the New York Times: "I wish there were someone that would hear my confession. Not a pastor, I do not want to be told of my sin. Not a mother, I don’t want to bring sorrow. Not a friend, she would not know enough. Not a lover, he would be too partial. Not a God, He is too far away. But someone who would be friend, mother, lover, pastor, and God all in one. A stranger besides, who would not interfere. Who, when everything is said, from beginning to end, would show the reason for it all. And then tell me to go ahead and work it out in my own way." My friends, that is the perfect picture of someone, or maybe, I am afraid, of a lot of people, who think God is in control of their lives, but in reality, He isn’t.

Working in your own way is stupid nonsense, because you will never be able to make anything with that mud, your life, but keep playing with it until it is worn out and dies. You will never be able to change it, to make something else out of the mud. But turn it over to God, allow the breath of God to enter life, allow God to fill life, allow God to pour Himself into your life, then changes will happen. You will no longer be a mud turtle, you will be a child of God’s. And in that relationship, God will be in control and life will change. Maybe not all at once, maybe not the way you might have expected it. But when God pulls us out of the mud and then remolds that mud, reshapes it and breathes His breath, His Spirit, into that mud, into your life, amazing things can happen.

The first step is to acknowledge that my control of life is not getting me anywhere in terms of finding peace, self-worth, and a sense of contentment. I need to admit to myself and to God that I am a mud turtle caught in the swamp of life and no matter how much I try, or how much I struggle, or how busy I seem to be, or how far I bury in the closets of the deepest part of my soul those hurts, those pains, those emotions, those situations which remind me over and over again, I am broken and I live in a broken world, I cannot escape from these until I am ready to surrender control of my life to Almighty God.

Luther had a prayer he prayed each day in which he asked God to allow him to surrender these things and then fill him with God’s breath, God’s Spirit. Listen: "Behold, Lord, an empty vessel that needs to be filled. My lord, fill it. I am weak in faith; strengthen thou me. I am cold in love; warm and make me fervent that my love may go out to my neighbors. I do not have a strong and firm faith; at times I doubt and am unable to trust Thee altogether. O Lord, help me. In Thee I have sealed the treasure of all I have. I am poor, Thou art rich and didst come to be merciful to the poor. I am a sinner; Thou are upright. With me, there is an abundance of sin, in Thee is the fullness of righteousness. Therefore I will remain with Thee whom I can receive, but to Whom I may not give." Amen

The closing story, I think, sums up this surrendering our selves, our beings, our emotions, our pains, our hurts, our hidden closet items over to God who can handle it. He is God Almighty and can deal with our deepest emotions as He listened to His own son cry from the cross, "My God, my God why hast thou forsaken me?" God can handle your life as it is with all of its brownness, with all of its sinfulness, with all of its self-pride. God can handle it, He wants to be in the picture of your life.

The tragedy left the man homeless, widowed and fatherless. Fire had swept through the trailer, and all was lost. It took some time for the full weight of the loss to descend, and when it did, he was nearly crushed. Like Job in the Old Testement he would not be comforted.....When the gift of shock was lifted, anger, resentment filled every waking thought. God had not been fair to him -- God had not protected his family. He had not come to him with a special visitation to explain the "why" and the "what next". He was in a wilderness as rugged as the Sinai.....The greatest temptation was to add to his losses by forfeiting his faith. He felt justified. No one would fault him. Some might even support him. He prayed angrily now, daring God to hurt him further, and challenging Him to give any reason to hold on to the thin thread of his faith that was left. He prayed angrily, but he prayed, and God could handle it..........The anguish continued to mount until one afternoon he uttered a cry so forcefully, it could only be described as a scream. No word was spoken, just a loud angry scream against the forces of heaven and hell, as if to say, "I’ve hurt all I can, and I’ve paid my dues for love.... Help me!!!.".......... The silence that followed was quieter than silence. A peace was evident for the first time in months."

Scripture might have said, "Angels came and ministered unto him." Satan had been overthrown, and health was coming back, for he believed, at last, that God was caring for those he lost. That God was caring for him. God could handle his honest anger, and his honest emotions.

God can handle all our pent up emotions, feelings, denials, and running away from the hurts and pain of life. God can handle it. We must let Him, for when we do, then, we will come to know the great and powerful love and mercy He has for us. God can handle it, period. Let Him.


AMEN

New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. The New Revised Standard Version Bible may be quoted and/or reprinted up to and inclusive of five hundred (500) verses without express written permission of the publisher, provided the verses quoted do not amount to a complete book of the Bible or account for fifty percent (50%) of the total work in which they are quoted. Sermon shared by Pastor Tim Zingale, February 11, 2002.

Verse of the Day - March 05, 2017


Deuteronomy 6: 6-7 (NIV) These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.

Read all of Deuteronomy 6

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Un Dia a la Vez - Oración por una actitud diferente


El gran amor del Señor nunca se acaba, y su compasión jamás se agota. Cada mañana se renuevan sus bondades; ¡muy grande es su fidelidad! Lamentaciones 3:22-23 (NVI)

Dios mío, en ti confío. A esta hora quiero pedirte perdón por mi mala actitud ante las diferentes situaciones de la vida. Confieso que me he levantado muchas veces renegando contra ti. Que he comenzado el día que me regalaste quejándome y hasta maldiciendo. Perdóname porque te he culpado por mis equivocaciones.

Oh, Señor, hoy he comprendido que esa no es la actitud que te agrada ni la actitud que trae bendición a mi vida. He entendido que debo ser fiel en lo poco y tú me respaldarás. También he recordado que el gozo y la gratitud me deben acompañar todos los días de mi vida.

Y sabiendo que esto que estoy viviendo hoy es temporal y que lo permites con un propósito, porque deseas enseñarme, capacítame para pasarme a otro nivel. Me dispongo a esperar confiadamente en ti y me comprometo en este día a cambiar mi actitud.

Gracias, mi Dios, por tu amor y por tu misericordia que es nueva cada mañana.

Amén y amén.

Un Día a la Vez Copyright © by Claudia Pinzón. La Santa Biblia, Nueva Versión Internacional® NVI® Copyright © 1986, 1999, 2015 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Standing Strong Through the Storm - FAITHFUL TO THE END

This calls for patient endurance on the part of the people of God who keep his commands and remain faithful to Jesus.

Patient endurance is an oft repeated theme throughout the New Testament. But it seems to be one theme we don’t talk about or preach about much. Yet it is a constant challenge for members of the persecuted church.

Since 1975, Bengali pastors in Bangladesh have faced increasing persecution for preaching the gospel. Some are beaten, imprisoned or even killed. As a result, their wives and children often face isolation. They are verbally and physically abused, and they face extraordinary challenge to remain free from bitterness.

Pastor Mir wanted to take the gospel to a place in Bangladesh that had not heard about Jesus. So he brought his wife Anjali and their children to a Muslim community that had never seen a Christian before. The community thought that Christians must look different somehow. Christians seemed so foreign to them. So they came to see what Christians looked like and introduced themselves.

Over the next several years, people began opening their hearts to the message of Jesus. But, not everyone responded so positively. Some in the village pressured the Mirs to leave. Nonetheless, they stood strong in their faith. Then one night, Anjali heard a loud noise. Someone was shot. Her husband had been walking to the market when two men caught him, shot him in the mouth and he fell on the ground. Then they took a dagger and stabbed him in the critical points of his body.

After a long while, Mrs. Mir heard that the man who had been shot was her husband. Though she longed to go to him, she knew her two small children required her care. So she could not leave her home. She was thinking, He’s going to die, and I have two boys. What am I going to do? How am I going to raise my two boys?

When Pastor Mir told onlookers he was dying, some fellow believers defied the threat of his attackers, and took him to a hospital. Miraculously, he survived. After years of extensive medical treatment, he is preaching again, but his injuries continue to plague him. His wife still worries over her children’s safety—and faces the challenge of helping them understand why their father was attacked.

Despite persecution, Pastor and Mrs. Mir are committed to staying in their village for the sake of their new Christian brothers and sisters. Anjali says, “If we leave, then there will be no church and the people who have just put their faith in Jesus, may fall away.”

The real cry of their heart is wanting to be faithful to Jesus to the end.

RESPONSE: Today I will keep Jesus’ commands and practice patient endurance.

PRAYER: Ask God to enable workers in areas of persecution to endure patiently the challenges they face for the sake of Jesus and His church.

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

LHM Daily Devotion - "How Dare He"

March 5, 2017

But Herod the tetrarch who had been reproved by him for Herodias, his brother's wife, and for all the evil things that Herod had done, added this to them all, that he locked up John in prison.

Read Luke 3:19-20

"How dare he challenge me like that? Doesn't he know who I am?" Like most wealthy, powerful people, Herod didn't want anyone telling him he was wrong, especially not a young wilderness wanderer, who went around wearing camel's hair and eating locusts and wild honey. The Baptist didn't like Herod's choice in women, but wasn't that Herod's own business? True, he had married his half-brother Philip's wife, the ambitious Herodias. But what was that to John? It was fine when John was laying into the Jewish religious leaders, but Herod thought his family should be off-limits.

But God had sent John to confront sinners, so they would acknowledge their sin and find forgiveness in the promised Messiah. It didn't matter how high and important you were. John knew it was better to face up to your sins now, so God could take them away. The alternative was to wait until life was over, and you were standing before God's judgment seat.

Herod should have listened to John's words and repented; instead, he seized and arrested John. He added this to his many other sins. Not only had he refused to heed John's timely warning and escape the wrath of God, he cut John off from the people who desperately needed to hear God's warning.

THE PRAYER: Almighty God, Your Word confronts my pride and my sin. For Jesus' sake, move me to repent of my sin and seek Your forgiveness. In the Name of Jesus Christ, Your Son, I ask this. Amen.

Use these devotions in your newsletter and bulletin! Used by permission; all rights reserved by the Int'l LLL (LHM). The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Permanent Text Edition® (2016). Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.

Devociones de Cuaresma - Re conciliarse es comenzar de nuevo

5 de Marzo

"Reconcíliense con Dios". Al que no cometió ningún pecado, por nosotros Dios lo hizo pecado, para que en él nosotros fuéramos hechos justicia de Dios. 2 Corintios 5:20-21, RVC (5:16-21)

¿Cómo se puede vivir amargado toda la vida? Parece mentira que algunas personas puedan guardar rabia y rencor por años en su corazón. Si el rencor quedara guardado, no sería tanto problema. Pero el asunto es cuando explota y desparrama palabrotas y acciones que lastiman a quienes están alrededor. Hay muchas personas que viven así. ¿Y si Dios guardara rencor y viviera amargado con nosotros?

San Pablo dice que Dios no guarda rencor. Aunque tiene motivos para estar enojado con nosotros a causa de nuestra indiferencia a su amor y nuestra rebeldía a su santa voluntad, Dios "nos reconcilió consigo mismo a través de Cristo" (2 Corintios 5:18). Dios quiere un nuevo comienzo con nosotros. Por eso, en Cristo, nos hizo una nueva creación.

¿Estás enojado con alguna persona? ¿Explotas de vez en cuando porque no pudiste perdonar? Se dice que el rencor es el veneno que uno toma esperando que el otro se muera. En otras palabras, el que no perdona se hace daño a sí mismo.

San Pablo nos invita a un nuevo comienzo a partir de la reconciliación que Dios logró mediante la muerte y resurrección de Jesús. Dios ya no está enojado con nosotros. ¿Por qué habríamos nosotros de seguir amargados y guardando rabia en nuestro corazón hacia los que nos rodean, especialmente hacia aquellos que decimos que amamos? En Cristo podemos comenzar de nuevo, disfrutando nuestras relaciones con un corazón limpio y perdonador. De esa forma, anunciamos a otros que hay una manera mejor de vivir que se extiende incluso hasta a la eternidad.

Gracias, Padre, por el sacrificio de Jesús que nos reconcilió contigo para siempre. Amén.

© Copyright 2017 Cristo Para Todas Las Naciones. Reina Valera Contemporánea (RVC) Copyright © 2009, 2011 by Sociedades Bíblicas Unidas.

Our Daily Bread - The Gift of Welcome

Read: Hebrews 13:1–2 | Bible in a Year: Numbers 34–36; Mark 9:30–50

Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers. Hebrews 13:2

The dinner where we hosted families from five nations remains a wonderful memory. Somehow the conversation didn’t splinter into twos, but we all contributed to a discussion of life in London from the viewpoints of different parts of the world. At the end of the evening, my husband and I reflected that we had received more than we gave, including the warm feelings we experienced in fostering new friendships and learning about different cultures.

The writer of the book of Hebrews concluded his thoughts with some exhortations for community life, including that his readers should continue to welcome strangers. For in doing so, “some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it” (13:2). He may have been referring to Abraham and Sarah, who as we see in Genesis 18:1–12 welcomed three strangers, reaching out to them with generosity and treating them to a feast, as was the custom in biblical times. They didn’t know that they were entertaining angels who brought them a message of blessing.

We don’t ask people into our homes in the hope of gaining from them, but often we receive more than we give. May the Lord spread His love through us as we reach out with His welcome.

Lord God, You are the source of all that we have. May we share what we receive, that You may be glorified.

When we practice hospitality, we share God’s goodness and gifts.


© 2017 Our Daily Bread Ministries

Lời Sống Hằng Ngày - Phần Thưởng Của Sự Tiếp Khách

Đọc: Hê-bơ-rơ 13:1-2 | Đọc Kinh Thánh suốt năm: Dân số ký 34-36; Mác 9:30-50

Chớ quên tỏ lòng hiếu khách. (Hê-bơ-rơ 13:2)

Bữa tối tiếp đãi các gia đình đến từ năm quốc gia đã để lại trong chúng tôi ký ức tuyệt vời. Cuộc trò chuyện không hề bị chia rẽ, mà tất cả chúng tôi đều cùng tham gia thảo luận về cuộc sống ở Luân Đôn từ cái nhìn của những vùng miền khác nhau trên thế giới. Cuối buổi tối đó, chồng tôi và tôi suy gẫm lại rằng chúng tôi đã nhận nhiều hơn là cho đi, bao gồm những tình cảm ấm áp khi nuôi dưỡng những tình bạn mới và học biết về nhiều nền văn hóa khác.

Trước giả sách Hê-bơ-rơ kết lại những suy nghĩ của ông bằng lời khích lệ cho cuộc sống cộng đồng, bao gồm việc các độc giả của ông nên tiếp tục tiếp đón khách lạ. Vì khi làm vậy, “có người đã tiếp đãi thiên sứ mà không biết” (13:2). Ông có thể đang nói đến Áp-ra-ham và Sa-ra, như chúng ta thấy trong Sáng thế ký 18:1-12 đã tiếp đón 3 vị khách lạ, bày tỏ sự rộng rãi và đãi họ một bữa tiệc, theo tập quán trong thời Kinh Thánh. Họ không biết mình đang tiếp đãi các thiên sứ đem đến sứ điệp phước hạnh cho họ.

Chúng ta không tiếp đón những người khách bước vào nhà mình với hy vọng nhận được gì đó ở họ, nhưng thường thì chúng ta nhận được nhiều hơn là cho. Nguyện Chúa rải khắp tình yêu của Ngài qua chúng ta khi chúng ta tiếp đón người khác như Ngài.

Lạy Chúa, mọi điều chúng con có đều thuộc về Ngài. Nguyện chúng con chia sẻ mọi điều mình nhận được để Ngài được vinh hiển.

Khi bày tỏ lòng hiếu khách, chúng ta đang chia sẻ sự tốt lành và sự ban cho của Chúa.


© 2017 Lời Sống Hằng Ngày

Nuestro Pan Diario - El don de la bienvenida

Leer: Hebreos 13:1-2 | La Biblia en un año: Marcos 9:30-50

No os olvidéis de la hospitalidad… (Hebreos 13:2).

L a ocasión en que invitamos a comer a familias de cinco naciones sigue siendo un recuerdo maravilloso. De alguna manera, la conversación no se dio de a dos, sino que todos participamos del debate sobre la vida en Londres, aportando perspectivas de diferentes partes del mundo. Esa noche, mi esposo y yo reflexionamos en que habíamos recibido más de lo que habíamos dado, incluida la calidez que sentimos al desarrollar amistades nuevas y aprender sobre culturas diferentes.

El escritor de Hebreos concluyó sus conceptos con algunas exhortaciones respecto a la vida comunitaria; entre ellas, que sus lectores debían continuar recibiendo a los extranjeros. Al hacerlo, «algunos, sin saberlo, hospedaron ángeles» (13:2). Tal vez se refería a Abraham y Sara, quienes, como vemos en Génesis 18:1-12, recibieron a tres extraños, fueron generosos con ellos y les prepararon un festín, tal como se acostumbraba en los tiempos bíblicos. No sabían que las visitas eran ángeles que les llevaban un mensaje de bendición.

No invitamos a personas a nuestra casa esperando recibir algo a cambio, pero, a menudo, recibimos más de lo que damos. Que el Señor extienda su amor a través de nosotros y dé la bienvenida a aquellos con quienes compartimos.

Señor, quiero glorificarte compartiendo con otros lo que me has dado.

Cuando somos hospitalarios, compartimos la bondad y las dádivas de Dios.


Unser Täglich Brot - Herzlich willkommen

Lesen: Hebräer 13,1-2 | Die Bibel In Einem Jahr: 4.Mose 34–36; Markus 9,30-50

Gastfrei zu sein vergesst nicht. Hebräer 13,2

Der Abend, an dem wir Familien aus fünf verschiedenen Ländern zu Gast hatten, bleibt mir unvergesslich. Irgendwie bildeten sich beim Gespräch keine Zweiergrüppchen, sondern jeder hatte aus seiner Sicht etwas dazu beizutragen, wie er mit dem Leben in London zurechtkam. Hinterher fanden wir beide, mein Mann und ich, dass wir mehr empfangen als gegeben hatten, und dazu gehörte auch das schöne Gefühl, neue Freundschaften geschlossen und mehr über andere Kulturen gelernt zu haben.

Der Verfasser des Hebräerbriefs schließt seine Ausführungen mit ein paar Ermahnungen zum Zusammenleben. Unter anderem mahnt er seine Leser, gastfreundlich zu sein, denn „dadurch haben einige ohne ihr Wissen Engel beherbergt“ (Hebr. 13,2). Vielleicht hat er dabei an Abraham und Sara gedacht, die, wie wir in 1.Mose 18,1-12 nachlesen können, drei Fremde einluden und ein Gastmahl für sie veranstalteten, wie es damals der Brauch war. Sie wussten nicht, dass sie Engel willkommen hießen, die ihnen eine Botschaft des Segens brachten.

Wir laden Menschen nicht zu uns ein, weil wir etwas von ihnen wollen. Aber oft empfangen wir mehr als wir geben. Möge Gott seine Liebe durch uns weitergeben und uns bereitmachen, andere in seinem Namen willkommen zu heißen.

Lieber Herr, du bist die Quelle von allem, was wir haben. Lass uns teilen, was wir empfangen haben, damit du verherrlicht wirst.

Wenn wir gastfrei sind, teilen wir Gottes Güte und Gaben.


© 2017 Unser Täglich Brot

Notre Pain Quotidien - Le don de l’accueil

Lisez : Hébreux 13.1,2 | La Bible en un an : Nombres 34 – 36 et Marc 9.30-50

N’oubliez pas l’hospitalité ; car, en l’exerçant, quelques‑uns ont logé des anges, sans le savoir. (Hébreux 13.2)

Nous gardons un merveilleux souvenir de notre repas d’accueil de familles originaires de cinq nations différentes. Étonnamment, au lieu de discuter en groupes de deux, nous avons tous participé à une même discussion au sujet de la vie à Londres d’après l’opinion qu’en avaient ces immigrants. En fin de soirée, mon mari et moi nous sommes passé la réflexion que nous avions reçu plus que nous avions donné, y compris les sentiments réconfortants que nous a valus la création de nouvelles amitiés et la découverte de nouvelles cultures.

L’auteur de l’épître aux Hébreux l’a conclue par quelques exhortations portant sur la vie communautaire, incluant celle incitant ses lecteurs à accueillir les étrangers parmi eux, car, ce faisant, « quelques‑uns ont logé des anges, sans le savoir » (13.2). Il se peut qu’il ait ainsi évoqué Abraham et Sara, qui, comme nous le voyons dans Genèse 18.1‑12, ont accueilli trois étrangers avec générosité en faisant préparer un festin à leur intention, conformément aux coutumes de l’époque. Ils ignoraient bénir ainsi des anges, eux‑mêmes porteurs d’un message de bénédiction.

Bien entendu, nous ne recevons pas des gens sous notre toit dans l’espoir d’obtenir quelque chose en retour, même si nous en retirons souvent plus que nous leur en apportons. Puisse le Seigneur répandre cet amour par nous en tant que ses agents d’accueil.

En exerçant l’hospitalité, on partage la bonté et les dons de Dieu.


Хліб Наш Насущній - Дар гостинності

Читати: Євреїв 13:1-2 | Біблія за рік: Числа 34–36 ; Марка 9:30-50

Не забувайте любови до приходнів. — Євреїв 13:2

Назавжди в нашій пам’яті залишиться той чудовий вечір, коли ми запросили на вечерю сім’ї з п’ятьох країн. Сталося, що співрозмовники не розділились парами, але всі приймали участь в обговоренні життя в Лондоні. Наприкінці вечора ми з чоловіком зрозуміли, що самі більше отримали, ніж віддали. Особливо це стосувалось того приємного відчуття, коли зав’язується дружба з новими людьми і коли взнаєш багато цікавого про інші культури.

Автор Послання до євреїв завершує свого листа деякими настановами щодо життя в общині. Вони включають і заклик до читачів не забувати про гостинність. Адже чинячи так, деякі, “не відаючи, гостинно були прийняли Анголів” (Євр. 13:2). Скоріш за все, йдеться про те, як Авраам і Сарра виявили щиру гостинність до трьох Мужів. В Книзі Буття 18:1-12 написано, що ця подружня пара запросила їх до шатра й запропонувала невеличкий банкет. Вони не знали тоді, що частують самих ангелів, які принесли їм благословенну звістку.

Ми не запрошуємо людей у наші домівки в надії щось отримати від них, але нерідко маємо від своєї гостинності навіть більше користі, ніж ті, кому цю гостинність виявляємо. Нехай Господь являє людям Свою любов через нас, через наше ласкаве ставлення до приходнів.

Господи Боже, Ти − джерело всього того, що ми маємо. Навчи віддавати те, що ми отримали від Тебе, щоб Ти прославлявся через це.

Практикувати гостинність – значить ділитись з іншими Божою ласкою і Його дарами.


© 2017 Хліб Наш Насущній

Хлеб наш насущный - Дар гостеприимства

Читать сейчас: Евреям 13:1-2 | Библия за год: Числа 34-36; Марка 9:30-50

Странноприимства не забывайте. — Евреям 13:2

Мы пригласили на обед пять семей из разных народностей и получили в награду незабываемые воспоминания. Беседуя, участники не разделились на пары, как можно было ожидать, но устроили общий разговор о жизни в Лондоне с точек зрения людей из разных частей земного шара. Под конец вечера мы с мужем согласились, что получили больше, чем отдали. Среди прочего, это были светлые чувства от новой дружбы и интересные сведения о различных культурах.

Автор Послания к евреям завершает свою книгу рядом наставлений, касающихся жизни в мире. Среди них – побуждение к гостеприимству. В библейские времена, поступая так, «некоторые, не зная, оказали гостеприимство ангелам» (Евр. 13:2). Возможно, речь идет об Аврааме и Сарре, которые приняли трех странников и приготовили для них трапезу, как было принято на Востоке. Они не знали, что их посетили ангелы с вестью о благословении.

Приглашая гостей, мы не рассчитываем нажиться на них, однако зачастую мы действительно получаем больше, чем отдаем. Пусть Господь распространит Свою любовь через нас, а мы откроем пошире двери искреннего гостеприимства.

Господь и Бог, Ты – источник всего, что у нас есть. Даруй нам благодать делиться тем, что мы получили, для Твоей славы.

Проявляя гостеприимство, мы являем Божью благость.


© 2017 Хлеб Наш Насущный