#855. Today this is fulfilled (13/7/23)
Welcome to this Come to Jesus Daily devotional as we continue with our series, ‘Luke - Exploring who Jesus is.’ This week, our devotionals are based on Luke 4:14-30. Today’s devotional is entitled, Today this is fulfilled.
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‘Then he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant and sat down. The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on him. He began by saying to them, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.” All spoke well of him and were amazed at the gracious words that came from his lips. “Isn’t this Joseph’s son?” they asked.’ (Luke 4:20-22)
Lesson: Don’t allow overfamiliarity to rob you of worship and expectation
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Jesus is the Messiah
When Jesus declares, "Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing," He is affirming that the prophecy of Isaiah is coming to fruition through Him. Jesus is asserting His identity as the promised Messiah - the term "Messiah" derives from the Hebrew word translated as "anointed" in Isaiah 61:1. Jesus makes the astounding claim that the prophecy regarding the Messiah's ministry to the poor, prisoners or captives, the blind, and the oppressed is being fulfilled in His person.
Jesus is actively working in power
His statement, "Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing," holds incredible promise for us. Often, when reading a text like this, we tend to apply it to ourselves and our role as the solution to the world's problems and unbelief. While the church does have an important part to play, as we discussed in our previous devotional, ultimately, it is Jesus who fulfils this prophecy. The weight of responsibility rests on Him. Anything we accomplish is by the grace of God and the empowering of the Spirit. The fulfilment of this prophecy is carried out by Christ through His work on the cross, His giving of the Spirit, and His sovereign will.
Overfamiliarity leads many to disrespect Jesus
Initially, the listeners in the synagogue responded positively, speaking well of Jesus and being amazed at His gracious words. They were entertained by His speaking abilities, yet the full impact of His message had not yet struck them. They were impressed by the oratory skills of "Joseph's son" (someone from their own community, not highly educated), but their familiarity with Jesus hindered them from truly receiving Him as they should. As the narrative progresses, we will witness their admiration for His speaking mixed with disrespect toward His person transform into outright hatred for Him and His message.
Do not allow overfamiliarity to diminish your sense of worship and expectation. While we may not have grown up with Jesus in our midst, many of us have known Him for a long time or have grown up with knowledge of Him. We can become overly accustomed to Him and His Word. If we fail to pray for significant things and expect great things, we may have fallen into a pattern of being entertained by the Christian life without anticipating the manifestation of the message and works of the Kingdom among us. Let us approach the Bible (such as the entire chapter four of Luke, for instance) with open eyes and hearts that lead to adoration, esteem, and eager anticipation.
COMMUNITY GROUP NOTES AND STUDY
It might be good to begin with notices. Please share from this week’s Church News.
What has God been speaking to you about from His Word this week and how has this helped you / affected your life?
3. STUDY AND PRAY TOGETHER
Please read Luke 4:14-30
On Sunday we looked at Luke 4:14-30 where Jesus visits His hometown of Nazareth. On the Sabbath, he goes to the synagogue and reads from the book of Isaiah, proclaiming that this prophecy has been fulfilled in him. He is the promised Messiah who would minister to the poor, prisoners, the blind, and the oppressed.
Initially, the listeners in the synagogue responded positively, speaking well of Jesus and being amazed at His gracious words. They were entertained by His speaking abilities, yet the full impact of His message had not yet struck them. They were impressed by the oratory skills of "Joseph's son" (someone from their own community, not highly educated), but their familiarity with Jesus hindered them from truly receiving Him as they should. As the narrative progresses, we will witness their admiration for His speaking mixed with disrespect toward His person transform into outright hatred for Him and His message as He confronts them with their rejection.
What does v.14 tell us about the work of the Holy Spirit in and through a Christian or a church?
What do verses 18-19 tell us about the work that Jesus is doing in this world; and what do these verses tell us about our work in this world?
Familiarity can breed contempt as we see in Jesus’ hometown. Have you grown overfamiliar or do you still have great expectations of what Jesus wants to work in and through us?
SIV - This text is rich in implications for how we do evangelism. How is your Serving, Investing and Inviting going? How can we pray for you about this?
SIV - Pray for one another to be filled with Holy Spirit. Pray that the church will see its mission being carried out under the anointing and power of Holy Spirit.