"An Appointment in Galilee"
August 7, 2015
(The angel said) "But go, tell His disciples and Peter that He is going before you to Galilee. There you will see Him, just as He told you." Mark 16:7
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 Emeritus of The Lutheran Hour
One Sunday afternoon this year, I went to visit a patient lying in a hospital.
I was quite surprised to see the staff of the neurology division and some family members in the patient's room. Soon after my prayer, one of the patient's relatives who works for LHM- Madagascar put on a Lutheran Hour CD and everyone in the room listened to the message about "Arrogance and Humility."
During the listening, the patient wept and at the end, he said, "Today I met Jesus." He was not alone. That message touched others, and now some of the neurology staff follow our Bible studies and listen to our broadcast.
Although they hadn't known it, these people all had had an appointment with Jesus.
Before His death and resurrection, Jesus told His disciples He had an appointment with them in Galilee. When the women went to the empty tomb on Resurrection Sunday, the angels reminded the disciples of that appointment.
In the 21st chapter of John we are told about how Jesus kept that appointment. John shares how the disciples were called to the purpose of sharing the story of salvation. The story begins with the disciples being told to cast their nets on the other side of the boat. This action of faith is blessed by a great catch of fish. Peter, along with the others, recognize the Lord and quickly move to His side.
As we said, the goal of this appointment in Galilee was to prepare Peter and the brothers for the work of "fishing for people." Jesus' actions let the disciples know that such work demands acceptance and obedience. It was a demand the disciples embraced.
The question is do we also have an appointment with Jesus in Galilee?
Well, we haven't received a message from the ladies who went to the tomb, and the Lord hasn't promised us He is going to meet us in Galilee. Historically and geographically, it would seem the text doesn't apply to us.
Or does it?
Look at the Gospels and you will hear Jesus say He has come to seek and save the "lost." The lost includes us.
In so doing, the Lord makes us part of this story. Where then is our Galilee -- our appointment? All true Christians believe the Savior is raised. He "was to put to death for our trespasses and rose for our justification" (Romans 4:25). The long-closed road to paradise has become opened again. Now the risen Lord wishes to meet us in His Word and Sacraments, and in the fellowship of His church. These locations are the places where Jesus wishes to meet us.
They are our "Galilee."
The patient of our opening story was led to Christ by the power of God's Word. His story, in many ways, is ours. Actually, it is the Lord's story that has been replayed again and again as lost souls are given salvation through faith in the risen Redeemer.
The Holy Spirit uses that Word to give us knowledge about God and leads us to the path of salvation, which is Jesus Christ alone. And in this we have our appointment with the Savior.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, we thank You that You have fixed an appointment place for us too. We are blessed that the Holy Spirit shall take us to the place and time where You shall meet with us. This we give thanks for in Your Name. Amen.
Biography of Author: Today's international devotion was authored by Pastor William David Zoulder. Reverend Zoulder is a pastor of the Malagasy Lutheran Church. After his graduation from Lomonossov State University in Moscow, he was appointed to the University of Madagascar as a philosophy lecturer. Pastor Zoulder graduated from the School of Theology of Natal University Pietermaritzburg, South Africa. He is currently a parish pastor and is involved with Lutheran Hour's radio program as well as working as a translator for our Bible Correspondence Courses (BCC). He is married to Virginia, who is one of our accountants. Together the Zoulders have three children.
In this country of more than 22 million people, LHM-Madagascar (known in-country as Voice of the Gospel) utilizes radio as the most efficient means of reaching the citizens living in this island nation. A 30-minute weekly FM radio program addresses cultural, spiritual and emotional topics, offering a Christian perspective to listeners. Through outreach conducted in both French and Malagasy, this ministry center -- established in Antananarivo in 1993 -- connects with rural communities through rallies and film showings, which often draw hundreds. Young people in high school and those serving time in detention centers also benefit from these films. As a way to strengthen believers' ability to share the Gospel, Equipping the Saints (ETS) workshops provide relational tools, material resources, and trained instruction in conveying the Good News of Jesus Christ. More than 5,000 participants are active in its BCC program too.
You can read about a film showing that LHM-Madagascar did for the students and staff of Amy High School by clicking here.
To learn more about our International Ministries, click here or visit www.lhm.org/international.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries