Lesson 48: Jesus: The Ultimate Model
Lesson 48, Devotion 1
“My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.” - John 15:12-13
Jesus was giving a small glimpse into the future in today's passage because He was going to be the person to lay down His life not only for His friends but for all humankind. Even though He was the Son of God, the price He would pay would not be easy. The walk to the cross was grueling, and His death was long and painful. Despite all of this the Bible says that Jesus gave up His life willingly. That's why Jesus is the perfect model of stewardship; He gave His all so you could be saved.
SO WHAT DOES THAT MEAN TO ME?
You have abundant life and life eternal thanks to Jesus sacrifice on the cross. He took your place and died for your sins. He laid down His life for you because He considers you His friend.
SO WHAT DO I DO?
God doesn't want you to die on a cross and chances are you will never have to die for your faith, but He does want you to give Him your life.
Put your life in God’s hands and trust Him to use you to bring people to the Kingdom of God.
Lesson 48, Devotion 2
“People curse the man who hoards grain, but blessing crowns him who is willing to sell.” - Proverbs 11:26
When you go to the refrigerator to get some milk have you ever noticed the expiration date on the container? Generally, milk from a store is good for about two weeks, and then it starts to spoil and becomes unusable. Some things have a "peak time" to be used and are never meant to be saved up or hoarded.
God has given you certain resources, spiritual gifts, and abilities to be used at just the right time. Selfishly holding on to those things may cause you to miss a “peak moment” to glorify God through good stewardship and that opportunity may never come your way again.
Everything Jesus did was done in God's perfect timing. His teachings, His healings, His miracles, even His death, and resurrection took place at just the right moment because Jesus was willing to give it all to His Father in Heaven.
Think about this:
Are you holding back from God and missing some key opportunities to advance His Kingdom?
What are some ways you can keep yourself “spiritually in tune” so you can be ready to be a steward and use your resources for God’s glory?
Lesson 48, Devotion 3
"What kinds of things happened to me in Antioch, Iconium, and Lystra, the persecutions I endured. Yet the Lord rescued me from all of them. In fact, everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted." - 2 Timothy 3:11-12
If you live in the United States, you probably don't hear very much about people who die because of their faith. We call those people martyrs and each year over 170,000 Christians die across the world for taking a stand for Jesus. Right now around 100 million Christians around the globe are being persecuted because of their faith in Christ. Paul told his young friend Timothy that living a Godly life would result in persecution.
Giving your resources back to God is awesome, and God will bless you. But remember that taking a stand for Christ may result in persecution. Are people laughing at you at school because of your faith? Do the guys in the locker room give you a hard time for practicing a Christian lifestyle? Sure it's tough but just remember the words of Jesus in the fifth chapter of Matthew . . .
“Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way, they persecuted the prophets who were before you."