Wednesday, September 21, 2016

LOST AND FOUND

Today’s Reading: Luke 15-16

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion on the right-hand side).

 

Near Tabgha Beach, on the shore of the Sea of Galilee, stands the Church of the Primacy of St. Peter. This square building of black basalt, built in 1934, is where Jesus is believed to have made a third appearance to His disciples after His Resurrection. As the event is described in the 21st chapter of John’s Gospel, Peter and six other disciples had been fishing all night without catching anything. Just after daybreak, Jesus stood on the beach, though they did not recognize Him. Jesus told the disciples to cast their net on the right side of the boat and the net filled with 153 fish. When the disciples dragged the net ashore, they found that Jesus had cooked them breakfast on a charcoal fire. The rock incorporated in the church floor is traditionally believed to be the place where Jesus prepared breakfast. It was known to medieval pilgrims as Mensa Christ (the table of Christ). Numbers are very significant to people who know Hebrew. The number 153 translates into “Ana Elohim.” “I am God!”

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where Reynold took the photo, click HERE.

Key Verse: Luke 15:4-5

What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he loses one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness, and go after the one which is lost until he finds it, and when he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing.

 

The lost sheep! The lost coin! The lost son! Do we get it? Our reading finishes with the story of the lost rich man, his lost brothers, and the salvation of the beggar Lazarus. Jesus really cares about lost people. We must recognize the infinite value of one precious person. If we want to be like Jesus, there is no other way than to focus our attention on finding the lost and bringing them to our Father in Heaven. Do we look for the prodigal as the father did in the story, or do we betray an essential selfishness like the older brother who had been faithful but uncaring for his lost brother? Chapter 16 introduces money into the mix. Giving time is equal to giving money. We need to do both!!! Are our priorities right before God and before people?

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord Jesus, in today’s reading, You are getting through to me. There are lost souls all around me. Help me to bring the lost back home to You today and every day. Help me, and help my church and the ministries I support, to constantly find opportunities to reach out to those lost in the maze of man-made philosophies, self-centred goals, and all the traps set by the enemy of our souls. I pray this, determined to look for the lost, in Your Name, Lord Jesus. Amen!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

One tool that the Crossroads ministry has used to find the lost and bring them to Jesus has been to encourage Christian pavilions at World Expos. The last Expo in which we were involved was Germany’s first…Expo 2000 in Hanover. The great fish, sketched out on the dining room table of our home, designed by architect Rob Adsett of Australia and pictured below, was voted the “Icon of the Expo” by the German people. The content of the pavilion in Hanover, Germany, was a movie based on the story of the prodigal son and the story of Jonah, written and produced by Bruce Stacey. Out of the millions who visited the pavilions in four Expos, at least 100,000 lost souls were found and brought home to our Father God. Names, addresses, telephone numbers, e-mail addresses, were recorded. They signed up for a Bible correspondence course and they were followed up by Scripture Union and churches around the world. I’ve learned that while these great efforts are important, they are not to be considered a substitute for my personal, one-to-one, soul winning.

Yours for finding lost people and bringing them home with us,

David

P.S. For several days now I’ve been writing here about the reliability of the Scriptures. Yesterday I referenced Tacitus, a primary historian of the Roman Empire (Annals 15:44). Today it’s Josephus, the most prominent Jewish historian. Josephus writes of James, whom we know as “the brother of our Lord” and author of the epistle of James. Josephus tells us of a trial before the Jewish Sanhedrin of “a man named James, the brother of Jesus who was called the Christ” (Antiquities 20:198-202).

“The Pavilion of Hope” at Expo 2000 in Hanover, Germany, was shaped like a “great fish.” This design was first sketched out on our dining room table by our Australian architect friend. His skills were evident at three World Expos, as well as in the Crossroads Centre in Burlington, Ontario. The German people voted to keep this as a symbol of Expo 2000 and the icon of the Expo. Today it serves as the offices for World Vision Germany.

 

9 thoughts on “Wednesday, September 21, 2016

  1. Good Friends,
    I am still confused by today’s readings and the parable in Luke 16.
    Even the titles of different versions do not agree (The Unjust Steward (KJV, NKJV); The Dishonest Steward (RSV); The Dishonest Manager (NRSV); The Crafty Steward (NJB); The Shrewd Manager (NIV) etc.).
    What did the manager do that Jesus found worthy of praise? Some commentaries suggest that the manager reduced the debt by his commission but that seems too easy an explanation for me?
    If anyone has a good explanation of this difficult parable I would be grateful.
    Shalom,
    Graham.

    • The way I heard it explained was the unjust servant in our day and age would be a non believer. A non believer who lives a unjust life, but maybe as they get older begin to think, okay maybe there is a God, heaven or a hell, so maybe I should clean up my act a little– get some brownie points with the Big Guy upstairs– so this non believer begins doing charitable works– Jesus is saying, although this non believer motives are self serving at least they are concern with what God might think, which what they are being praised for, because it is more than some believers do, who from their cushy ” I am saved” position, no longer use the resources God has given them to serve mankind, but their own comfort level.
      . Jesus is saying the non believer is being more wise than the believer who wants blessings for themselves but doesn’t use those blessings to give to others–and if a believer treats temporary blessings like money like that, why should God later trust them with the real blessings of His Kingdom? .Did that make sense?

      • That’s an interesting thought on the situation. I think a little differently (but I don’t know if I’m right on though). I think the servant is stealing from his master (cheating him) to give a favourable appearance to the folk who owe for supplies or services. The master may not realize that he was owed much more. When the servant needs a favour or two, the folk that he reduced the bills of, will come to his aid. He is crafty but not righteous and not trustworthy. What do you think?

  2. Hello…I have not received the daily message since August,could you please resend it?
    Thank you for what you do to make the world a better place,for all of us.Godbless..Peace

  3. I believe the moral of the story in Luke 16:1-13 is: Have we surrendered all to God, or are we just playing the part? We are not only lying to God , but ourselves too, thinking we can fool God!
    Praise God He is merciful and forgives us our foolishness: There is nothing that He does not know about us, but He loves us through it all; waiting for us to surrender all to Him!! Come clean!!

  4. Praise God for the salvation of many through the Christian Pavilion at the World Expos, for the Ministry of Crossroads; Thank you David for sharing and for the photo of the German pavilion. Thank also Reynold for your photo of the interior of the church, together with the explanation!!

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