... And on the way He (Jesus) asked His disciples, "Who do people say that I am?" And they told Him, "John the Baptist; and others say, Elijah; and others, one of the prophets." And He asked them, "But who do you say that I am?" Peter answered Him, "You are the Christ." And He strictly charged them to tell no one about Him. Mark 8:27b-30
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 Sunday 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 of the characteristics of people is to comment on actions carried out by other people in order to give a verdict. In most cases, people depend on their perceptions to determine if something is true or false.
In the time of Jesus, all were amazed by the works He performed, and each person had an appreciation about Him, but the conclusions that people drew were different. Some said He was John the Baptist, others Elijah, and some were very vague in their appreciation, as they regarded Him as one of the prophets.
The same is true for people today. It has been more than 2,000 years since Jesus was on this earth. A lot has been written and discussed about His life and work, but it is still difficult to find people who understand who Christ is for them.
Since his teenage years, Juan Daniel was a person who was always curious to know about Jesus, to learn and understand Him. Daniel met with various groups in his quest to know and understand who Jesus is. He met various groups that instead of giving an answer to his concerns ended up creating more confusion. As in Jesus' time, there were different opinions.
Among those groups, Juan Daniel remembers a religious group that said Jesus was the Messiah, but it did not know or was misguided regarding Jesus' true mission. That group's major concern or purpose of its existence as a religious group was very different than that of believers found in the Bible.
Later Daniel met with others who understood Jesus as a Person who had His place in history and was only a Man who left a worthy moral and ethical example to be emulated by many. This group denied or was unaware of Jesus' deity and redeeming work.
And so for most of his life, Daniel kept looking around to understand who Jesus was, and even came to doubt His existence. Often he thought the Redeemer was just a myth invented by someone to manipulate the majority.
You know and I know that Daniel could have spent his life looking and never found the Savior. That's because it is impossible for a sinner to find God. But that doesn't mean things are hopeless. Forgiveness and salvation become a reality when God finds us.
Daniel was saved when the Holy Spirit used our broadcast to point him to the Lamb of God who lived, suffered, died and rose so that all who believe on Him as their Redeemer would be rescued. Daniel was saved when the Holy Spirit put faith into his heart. Indeed, all of us are saved that way.
For Daniel's conversion we give thanks to the Lord and we rededicate ourselves to sharing the Savior's story of salvation. Sharing the truth is what we are committed to do.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, send Your Spirit upon the world that blind souls may see the Savior who was sacrificed, so they might be forgiven and made part of the family of faith. In Jesus' Name I ask it. Amen.
Biography of Author: Today's international devotion was written by Pastor Edgar Martin Coronado of Venezuela. Pastor Coronado is supportive of Lutheran Hour Ministries' work in his country, and we thank him for his devotions. Currently, he is serving at La Fortaleza Lutheran Church in Maracay, and as a missionary pastor in Aragua State. He is also professor of philosophy at Pedagogico de Caracas.
Known in Venezuela as Cristo Para Todas Las Naciones ("Christ for All Nations"), LHM-Venezuela uses Equipping the Saints (ETS) and Bible Correspondence Courses (BCC) to reach out to South Americans with the Gospel, in this country of more than 30 million people. On the media side, this ministry center produces radio messages like "A Moment with God" and "Perspectives" to deal with life's everyday issues. Also its website is accessed by many, and visitors can opt to receive Christian devotional messages, as well as inspirational e-mails or text messages.
You can learn more about what goes on at LHM-Venezuela by clicking here to visit its blog.
To learn more about our International Ministries, click here or visit www.lhm.org/international.
In Christ I remain His servant and yours,
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries
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