The Likes of Us
Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field. —Matthew 9:38 niv
In the late 19th century, William Carey felt a call to travel to India as a missionary to share the good news of Jesus. Pastors around him scoffed: “Young man, if God wants to save [anyone] in India, He will do it without your help or mine!” They missed the point of partnership. God does very little on earth without the likes of us.
As partners in God’s work on earth, we insist that God’s will be done while at the same time committing ourselves to whatever that may require of us. “Your kingdom come. Your will be done,” Jesus taught us to pray (Matt. 6:10). These words are not calm requests but holy demands. Give us justice! Set the world aright!
When we extend mercy to the broken, we reach out with the hands of Christ Himself.
We have different roles to play, we and God. It is our role to follow in Jesus’ steps by doing the work of the kingdom both by our deeds and by our prayers.
We are Christ’s body on earth, to borrow Paul’s metaphor in Colossians 1:24. Those we serve, Christ serves. When we extend mercy to the broken, we reach out with the hands of Christ Himself.
Lord, You have called us Your friends. In some small way, help us to show Your love to this hurting world so they will know You.
Expect great things from God; attempt great things for God. William Carey
By Philip Yancey
Suffering Afflictions and Going the Second Mile
I tell you not to resist an evil person. But whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also. —Matthew 5:39
This verse reveals the humiliation of being a Christian. In the natural realm, if a person does not hit back, it is because he is a coward. But in the spiritual realm, it is the very evidence of the Son of God in him if he does not hit back. When you are insulted, you must not only not resent it, but you must make it an opportunity to exhibit the Son of God in your life. And you cannot imitate the nature of Jesus— it is either in you or it is not. A personal insult becomes an opportunity for a saint to reveal the incredible sweetness of the Lord Jesus.
The teaching of the Sermon on the Mount is not, “Do your duty,” but is, in effect, “Do what is not your duty.” It is not your duty to go the second mile, or to turn the other cheek, but Jesus said that if we are His disciples, we will always do these things. We will not say, “Oh well, I just can’t do any more, and I’ve been so misrepresented and misunderstood.” Every time I insist on having my own rights, I hurt the Son of God, while in fact I can prevent Jesus from being hurt if I will take the blow myself. That is the real meaning of filling “up in my flesh what is lacking in the afflictions of Christ…” (Colossians 1:24). A disciple realizes that it is his Lord’s honor that is at stake in his life, not his own honor.
Never look for righteousness in the other person, but never cease to be righteous yourself. We are always looking for justice, yet the essence of the teaching of the Sermon on the Mount is— Never look for justice, but never cease to give it.
By Oswald Chambers
Little children, it is the last hour; and as you have heard that the Antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have come, by which we know that it is the last hour. 1 John 2:18
The word “antichrist” is not found in classical Greek prior to the coming of Christ. It may be a word coined by the apostle John since he is the only one who uses it in the New Testament (1 John 2:18, 22; 4:3; 2 John 7). To describe someone who was against Christ or drawing attention to himself instead of Christ, one would attach anti (“against, opposite, instead of”) to Christos to create “antiChrist.”
John used the word two ways: to refer to the Antichrist (1 John 2:18, 4:3) and those who operate like the Antichrist (1 John 2:18, 22; 2 John 7). Like Satan and his demons, a satanically inspired individual who appears at the end of the age has satanically inspired emissaries who are doing his work at present. In truth, the antichrists that John warned against—anyone who is against the true person and work of Jesus Christ—are everywhere in the world. And like those to whom John wrote, we must be aware of their presence and deception (2 Corinthians 11:13-15).
Be alert and on your spiritual guard today for antichrists who deny and deceive.
When Scripture speaks of Antichrist it includes the whole duration of his reign. John Calvin
Recommended Reading: Revelation 13:1-8