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Daily Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries

"A Fresh Start"

July 17, 2009

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In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. Genesis 1:1-2

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ:

The salvation story of Jesus Christ reaches around the world. So that the readers of our Daily Devotion may see the power of the Savior on a global scale, we have asked the volunteers of our International Ministry Centers to write our Friday devotions. We pray that the Spirit may touch your day through their words.

In Christ, I remain, His servant and yours,
Kenneth R. Klaus
Speaker of The Lutheran Hour

To put things in order, it is necessary to start at the beginning. The Bible tells us how God put the world in its place and everything was perfect. But Satan enticed man to disobey God and the perfect order was broken. Rather than the harmonious relationship originally instituted between God and man, a broken spiritual union resulted from man's most grievous sin in the Garden of Eden.

Instead of a joyful unity with God, chaos reigned, wreaking havoc on the original state of affairs. But the love of God was revealed when He gave man the promise of a fresh start -- a new and forgiven life that would ultimately be made possible by the atoning work of God's Son, Jesus Christ.

In this world under the devil's vile regime, the effects of our sin are plainly obvious. Our sin mars our relationship with God and those around us. It undermines our best intentions, and even those things we've done that we think are worthwhile in God's sight are tainted because of sin. For as the prophet Isaiah has said, "... all our righteous deeds are like a filthy garment" (Isaiah 64:6b).

Corrupt to the core, things don't look very good for man when left to his own devices.

It is faith in God's Son, our Savior, however, that brings full light to lives once lived in darkness and despair. God sent His Son, Jesus Christ, to be our light amid darkness, our life amid death, our peace amid desperation. By His death, He took every last one of our filthy sins and bore the horrendous weight of our endless failures. By His resurrection, He forever removed our sins from us.

And by the salvation His Spirit gives us through faith, He dispels all chaos and enthrones Himself as Lord of lords and King of kings in our hearts.

THE PRAYER: God, please create in me a new heart. Make it a heart that each day trusts in Your power alone for the only fresh start possible -- a new life won by Jesus' blood and freely given by Your unfathomable grace. Darkness once covered my life, but now You reign supreme. Amen.

Biography of Author: A volunteer from Lutheran Hour Ministries' operations in Argentina wrote this devotion. Known as Cristo Para Todas las Naciones ("Christ for all Nations" or CPTLN) within this South American country of over 40 million people, LHM has had an office in Buenos Aires since 1947. Principal Gospel programs utilized are Bible Correspondence Courses (BCC), Equipping The Saints (ETS) and Project JOEL, a children's outreach ministry.

To learn more about our International Ministries, click here or visit

Today's Bible Readings: 2 Kings 17-18    Galatians 4

Change Their World. Change Yours. This changes everything.

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