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DAILY DEVOTIONS
 

  In more than three decades of my Christian life, I have been blest by 2 types of Daily devos' (matter not exceeding 500 words) in universal Christian literature. Not only those Devos' which have a different theme everyday but also the ones which revolve around a certain theme over a period of time, say a fortnight, have richly edified me. In fact, both styles have their own inherent advantages. If the former style caters to the varying spiritual needs of a christian from day-to-day, the latter aims 'to ground' a child of God in a certain subject in order he derives the full benefits of the deep insightful study of a certain topic, spread over a fixed span of time.

In my Daily devo page, I have consciously tried to go in for 'a blend of both the styles' whereby within a constant theme, I would be aiming to focus on different facets of it which admittedly is a closer imitation of the 'Constant theme' style than the 'Varying topics' one.

As the month of December coincides with the Christmas season, in this month I intend to dwell exclusively on all the topics revolving around Christmas using the visit of the Wise man described in Matthew 2 as the base.

Let me wish you a happy and an edifying read… oh yes-MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL OF US!

Suresh Manoharan




December 31st

Well within our grasp…


In fact, it says, “The message is very close at hand; it is on your lips and in your heart.” And that message is the very message about faith that we preach: If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by confessing with your mouth that you are saved – Romans 10:8-10
 
  As we wind-up our meditations on the visit of the Wise men or Magi (Matt 2), which forms an important part of the wider Christmas story, the picture of these persevering Wise men traveling slowly covering one weary mile after another on their Camel backs to see and worship the Christ child forms an enduring image in our mind.

While their diligence in their mission would always come for appreciation in all ages, the poser to us is should we too in this age of grace travel many energy-sapping miles like the Wise men to seek and worship Christ? The answer is an emphatic NO! Remember, the moment Christ gave-up his life as an atonement for our sins on the cross, the super natural tearing of the curtain into two (Luke 23:45) which separated the Sanctum Sanctorum from the ordinary in the Temple, signaled not only the end of Mosaic Law age but also the ushering in of the Grace period in its place. Grace, say the Scriptures unlike the Mosaic law brought in its wake God’s loving forgiveness (John 1:17). GRACE say the wise Biblical scholars-quite correctly at that- is nothing but an abridged version of the words “ God’s redemption (of sinners) at Christ’s expense”.

In this era of Grace, one needn’t travel to the ends of the earth to find Christ nor does he need to put himself under any kind of physical hardship or duress to curry God’s favour. Rather, as the above captioned Scripture portion bears out all one needs to do to experience Salvation is “confess with his mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in his heart that God raised him from the dead, and he will be saved.”

If anything, this study of the Wise men story, presents a wonderful opportunity to those, who have never experienced His redemptive love to partake of Salvation, which is as close to them as their own hearts and mouths. As Grace period would be followed by that of Judgment, wherein the Jesus the Saviour would turn the Judge (Matt 25:26-46) let’s not fail to respond to God’s invitation during this Grace period. Let me conclude our meditations with what Bible itself says on this paramount subject…

As God’s partners, we beg you not to accept this marvelous gift of God’s kindness and then ignore it. For God says, “At just the right time, I heard you. On the day of salvation, I helped you.” Indeed, the “right time” is now. Today is the day of salvation. - II Cor 6:1-2

Prayer:

Father, what else can the redeemed ones’ do, other than point the unsaved ones’ towards thy Saving grace, in hope the great spiritual experience of being ‘Born again’ would be theirs’ too. Inspire them to respond to Thy call of mercy. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
 


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