June 23, 2014
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to His great mercy, He has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. 1 Peter 1:3
So, let's see the hands of those readers of the Daily Devotions who are getting older.
As far as I can tell from here, that includes just about everyone. Some of the folks who didn't hold up their hands say they didn't do so because they thought I would ask them to publicly reveal their age. Others didn't do so because they believe I can't see them from the keyboard of my computer.
The truth is we are all getting older, and not necessarily better. The things we used to do easily are now harder or impossible to accomplish. The illnesses we once shrugged off are now only conquered after a prolonged battle. Then, of course, there are the folks whose immune systems have been battered by chemotherapy.
Because all of this is true, many of us might easily find ourselves musing, "Wouldn't it be nice if we could restore those weakened immune systems?"
Well, it appears that scientists at the University of Southern California say they may have discovered a way to do just that. That way is: fasting. Yup. Fasting. When they put folks on a cycle of two-to-four-day fasts, which took place over a period of six months, the results were dramatic. As near as I can tell from their big words, the bodies of these folks ended up breaking down the old immune system and beginning with an almost new one.
Please remember the Daily Devotions are not designed to offer medical advice, and they certainly shouldn't be used to start some kind of procedure without a physician's blessing. All we are reporting is this: scientists think it is possible to jump start a new immune system.
Oh, there is one other thing this devotion is saying. We are also saying there is no way for anybody to regenerate a sinful soul. Scripture is plain: the soul that sins will die. (See Ezekiel 18:20.) Try as you will, you can't change that fact.
This is why we all need a Savior.
In 2 Corinthians 5:17, St. Paul tells us when we are in Christ, we have become a new creation, the old has passed away, and the new has come. Peter agrees with Paul and amplifies that concept when he says we have been born again to a living hope. (See 1Peter 1:3-9.)
Indeed, through the resurrection of the Savior, the eternal destiny is changed for all who are given faith in the Redeemer. Once they were destined to hell, but now they are headed toward heaven. Once there was no escape from damnation, but now salvation is their lot.
The rebirth the Savior brings about is a thing too wonderful for words. It may be too wonderful for words, but that doesn't mean we shouldn't try to express an everlasting thankfulness for God's gracious, blood-bought gift.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, I give thanks that through Your life and resurrection I have been born again. May I live as a thankful person who is most grateful for this new lease on eternal life. In Your Name. Amen.
All too often the job of reaching others is left to others. That can be unfortunate. After all, there are times when YOU may be the best person to reach someone who is lost or wandering. If you have always wanted to know how to do such a sharing of the Savior, you may want to attend Lutheran Hour Ministries' SENT Outreach Conference, which is July 24-27 in Detroit. For more information, visit www.lhm.org/conference.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries