Highlights In Today's Reading:
Today's reading is full of inspiration and we need all that is available. Jesus tells us what we should be doing today to further His kingdom. (1) Preach the Good News (8:1). (2) Support His ministry through freewill offerings (8:2-3). (3) Sow the seed (the Word: 8:4-15); The Candle (Light) is the Truth, the candlestick (lampstand) is the holder (8:16-18). (4) Shine His Light! Seven truths: (A) Jesus' real family is God's family (8:19-21). (B) No boat can sink that has the Lord Jesus on board (8:22-25). (C) His miracles declare that both demon and disease disappear before Him (8:26-56). (D) Those He sends to preach the Kingdom of God in His Name go in His power and authority (9:1-2). (E) Trust the Lord to always meet the need (9:12-17). (F) People were divided as to who Jesus was but the "transfiguration" left no doubt in the minds of the disciples (9:18-21,28-36). (G) The cost of discipleship is clear (9:22-27), but many won't make it because Christ is not first in their consideration of what is most important. Others had other excuses for putting Jesus off until a more convenient time (9:61-62).
Our Lord did not welcome the volunteers who appeared at first so willing to join Him (9:57). Their excuses revealed divided hearts that were unworthy of His High calling. That "single eye" of devotedness to Christ, where all else in this world fades into insignificance, was lacking. Love dictated the sternness of our Lord's words.
How differently Jesus handled the situation from the way some churches would accept these prospects. But, like Gideon, it may be that we should take a new look at our crowds and settle for the few who truly mean business. But, in this day of statistics, some look on these "prospects" as a good showing on the books!
Is there anything in your heart or your life that keeps you from giving Christ your undivided attention? The halfhearted compromisers are unwilling to pay the cost for the peace of God, which passeth all understanding (Philippians 4:7).
Jesus calls us to Himself — to communicate His life and His forgiving love. For the Son of Man is not come to destroy men's lives, but to save them (Luke 9:56). The more carefully we read His Word and listen to His voice with submitted hearts the more all worldly ambitions and human standards fade into insignificance. Nothing else in this world has any lasting eternal value save Jesus Christ, and Him crucified (I Corinthians 2:2).
Therefore said He unto them, The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few: pray ye therefore the Lord of the Harvest, that He would send forth labourers into His harvest (Luke 10:2).
Thought for Today:
Jesus said: Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart (Luke 10:27). Doesn't leave room for much else,does it?
8:44 stanched =b> stopped flowing; 9:3 staves =b> staffs, walking sticks; scrip =b> small bag for money or food; 9:29 glistering =b> shining with brilliance.
For Luke 8:10: See Isaiah 6:9.
Pray for International Shortwave Broadcasts in memory of Iva Ann McElroy • Staff: Pam Pendergrast • Government Officials: Rep. Mary Bono (CA), Gov. Mike Rounds (SD), Rep. José Serrano (NY), and Rep. Bradley Sherman (CA) • Country: Lesotho (2 million) within the east-central part of the Republic of South Africa • Major languages: Sesotho and English • Limited religious freedom • 43% Roman Catholic; 30% Protestant; 6% ancestor worship, divination, and spirit-possession cults • Prayer Suggestion: Ask God for daily direction (Psa. 48:14).
Memory Verse for the Week: Mark 4:19