A description of true fasting; blessings of affliction; Christ's proclamation.
The Spirit of the Lord God is upon Me; because the Lord hath anointed Me to preach good tidings unto the meek; He hath sent Me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound (Is. 61:1).
Our Lord came as a servant to bind up the brokenhearted and set the captive free. Each person who has been redeemed by the blood of Jesus the Lamb should accept their responsibility to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty. This work of the Lord is one of the highest privileges of a child of God. Our labors on behalf of less fortunate ones show our nearness and likeness to Him, who ever liveth to make intercession for them (Heb. 7:25).
A servant of God cares about other people and is a living trophy of God's forgiving love and His will. Furthermore, when the needs of others are made known to him, he brings these needs before God in prayer and gives words of comfort to his fellowman. The believer will do his best to be like Jesus to the world around him. He will try in every way to represent Christ. The best way to do this is by becoming a servant to the world. The true heart of a servant was within Christ and by His transforming power will be inside every believer. As this heart is inside us, we will follow the Lord's example: If any man serve Me, let him follow Me; and where I am, there shall also My servant be: if any man serve Me, him will My Father honour (John 12:26).
The daily responsibility of the servant is to be in harmony with the Master's will. As God is holy, the servant also seeks to be holy as he strives to represent his Master. Not only are we to carry out the Lord's service, we are also to be conformed to His likeness in our lifestyle as well. Although by grace are ye saved through faith . . . we are . . . created in Christ Jesus unto good works (Eph. 2:8-10). We show our love towards God and our fellowman through our deeds (works). Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great Commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself (Matt. 22:37-39). By showing this love, we are truly representing Christ.
Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another (Rom. 12:10).
Thought for Today:
If you have experienced the joy of salvation, tell someone.
As the One anointed to preach Good Tidings (Is. 61:1). Jesus read this passage to the rulers of the synagogue (Luke 4:16-22) but stopped without completing the second verse (Is. 61:2), thus showing that He fulfilled the first part. But, the second part, the Day of Judgment, was yet to be fulfilled.
60:5 see, and flow together = become enlightened, and shine forth the Light of God; fear = be in awe (be amazed at what God is doing), and then when that has registered, comes the joy; 61:3 appoint = impart comfort; 62:4 Hephzibah = My delight is in her; Beulah = married; 63:15 the sounding of thy bowels = the yearning affection of your heart.
Pray for Government Official: Rep. Connie Mack (FL) • Country: Poland (38.6 million) in eastern Europe • Major language: Polish • Religious freedom • 96% Roman Catholic (including Greek Catholic — .31%); 1.56% Orthodox; .5% Protestant; .01% Muslim; .01% Far Eastern Religions; 1.7% Other • Prayer Suggestion: Ask for forgiveness for particular sins (Ps. 51:1-9).
Optional Reading: I Peter 2
Memory Verse for the Week: Isaiah 55:11