UPDATED Today’s AMI QT Devotional, provided by Pastor Peter Yoon of Kairos Christian Church in San Diego, is an updated version of his blog first posted on May 29, 2014. Peter is a graduate of University of California, Riverside (BA) and Talbot School of Theology (M.Div.).
Devotional Thought for This Morning
“God’s Justice First, Then Social Justice”
These people are blemishes at your love feasts, eating with you without the slightest qualm—shepherds who feed only themselves. They are clouds without rain, blown along by the wind; autumn trees, without fruit and uprooted—twice dead. 13 They are wild waves of the sea, foaming up their shame; wandering stars, for whom blackest darkness has been reserved forever. 14 Enoch, the seventh from Adam, prophesied about them: “See, the Lord is coming with thousands upon thousands of his holy ones 15 to judge everyone, and to convict all of them of all the ungodly acts they have committed in their ungodliness, and of all the defiant words ungodly sinners have spoken against him.” 16 These people are grumblers and faultfinders; they follow their own evil desires; they boast about themselves and flatter others for their own advantage.
Introduction: We hear a lot about social justice these days. Without taking anything away from that worthy pursuit, let’s not forget about God’s justice: “the righteous requirements of the law” (Rom. 8:4) that the wages of sin be paid in the form of death (Rom. 6:23). And it wasn’t us who paid for it with our own death but Christ Jesus; he took our place so that we are made righteous through his atoning sacrifice. Keep that in mind as you read this morning’s devotional.
Using metaphor upon metaphor, Jude depicts a grim picture of those who have become totally darkened and without any regard for God. It’s frightening to think how any person can become so hardened; and Jude compares him to a despicable shepherd who feeds only himself. What’s worse is that in the end, only judgment awaits those who have pursued such ungodliness.
While we do not like to think about consequences and judgment, Jesus did not hesitate to talk about hell. He warned and preached for repentance from sins so that his listeners might have life rather than eternal judgment. Ultimately, Jesus gave his own life as a ransom for our sins so that through Him, we might have life. The good news is that Jesus paid the penalty for our sins, so that we might receive forgiveness rather than judgment for our sins. This is God’s justice; only then can we truly pursue social justice rooted in divine justice.
There are people around us whose final destination is eternal judgment. Without placing faith in Jesus Christ alone for salvation, some of our friends, family members and co-workers are heading toward a day of judgment. Yet there is one hope to avoid that dreadful day: to hear and believe in the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Let’s remember to pray for those who are still far from God. Let’s pray earnestly, so that their hearts will believe in the Lord Jesus Christ. Along our prayers, let’s look for opportunities to share the gospel with them.
Prayer: Lord, I pray for _______________ (name) to come to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ. I ask that You soften his/her heart to the gospel. I pray that You will also provide me with an opportunity to share the good news with him/her. Amen.
Bible Reading for Today: Isaiah 59
Lunch Break Study
Read Romans 10:13-15: for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” 14 How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? 15 And how can anyone preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!”
Questions to Consider
- What are the conditions that can lead a person to salvation?
- How does God describe those who bring good news to others?
- Do you sometimes assume that those around you already know what the Bible says about salvation?
- The four conditions Paul writes are: (a) Someone is sent, (b) someone preaches, (c) they hear, and (d) they believe
- Paul quotes from Isaiah 52:7 to describe one who brings good news as having beautiful (nahad) feet. The Hebrew word, nahad, means “befitting, becoming, perfectly appropriate, perfectly fitting.” It is what God had in mind for our feet. Your feet are designed to go places. When they go into the world of men and women with the message of good news and peace with God, God calls them beautiful.
- As the society we live in has become increasingly secular and post-truth, people have less knowledge of what the Scriptures actually teach about salvation. When appropriate, ask an unsaved person what he/she thinks the Bible says about salvation; you just might be able to share some really “good news” with that person.
How often do you find yourself praying for people around you who still do not believe in Jesus Christ? Spend some time tonight interceding on their behalf.