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Thursday, March 10, 2016

Day 22: Matthew 10:1-15 and Psalm 22 - Have You Been Called and Sent By Jesus?

Today's Scripture Reading: Matthew 10:1-15 & Psalm 22

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Have You Been Called and Sent By Jesus?

And proclaim as you go, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ - Matt. 10:7, ESV

When Jesus picked His twelve disciples, He commissioned them with His own authority and sent them out to proclaim and demonstrate the kingdom of God. While the twelve disciples had unique authority and supernatural power, the pattern of being called and sent by Jesus remains the same for every believer.

When Jesus calls you to follow Him, He invites you into His counsel and shares His wisdom and His kingdom plan with you in His word. He calls you to learn His ways, understand His Gospel, grow in your relationship with Him and then take His kingdom to others around you. 

When these disciples went to the towns and villages in Israel, they came with both the message and the powerful demonstration of the kingdom. They didn't just tell people that the kingdom of heaven was at hand; they showed the truth and power of the kingdom through their actions. 

Too often, when Christians engage in missions work, we either speak without showing love or we engage in social development programs without clearly presenting the Gospel. Jesus made the mission priorities for His church very clear: Proclaim the Gospel of the kingdom first and follow your proclamation with a clear demonstration of the powerful love of God. 

Prayer Based on Psalm 22:

Heavenly Father, when I read Psalm 22, it reminds me in stark language of the great price Your Son paid for my salvation on the cross. He was despised and rejected. He suffered deep physical pain and He suffered the agony of Your wrath that I deserve. He was betrayed by His friends, mocked by His enemies and crushed by Your hand of discipline for me and for my salvation. It was my sin that held Him there. It was my sin that cost Him His life. 

Lord, my heart's desire is to see Jesus receive the fruit of His sacrifice, the inheritance of the nations. So, Lord, send out Your church, Your missionaries, Your ambassadors, to carry the message and the ministry of the kingdom to all the nations, until that day when we see the Gospel permeate the nations and Jesus exalted in every language among every people on earth.

All the ends of the earth shall remember
    and turn to the Lord,
and all the families of the nations
    shall worship before you.
For kingship belongs to the Lord,
    and he rules over the nations.
All the prosperous of the earth eat and worship;
    before him shall bow all who go down to the dust,
    even the one who could not keep himself alive.
Posterity shall serve him;
    it shall be told of the Lord to the coming generation;
they shall come and proclaim his righteousness to a people yet unborn,
    that he has done it.      

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