Psalm 25:4-5 - Make me to know Your ways, O LORD; teach me Your paths. Lead me in Your truth and teach me, for You are the God of my salvation; for You I wait all the day long. Remember Your mercy, O LORD, and Your steadfast love, for they have been from of old.
Would you agree with the psalmist? Would you want to know the ways of the Lord and walk in His paths? Would you pray that He would teach us and lead us in His truth? Jesus' first disciples wanted all of these things, but like the psalmist they had to say, "For You I wait all the day long." They waited because, at His ascension, Jesus "ordered them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the promise of the Father" (Acts 1:4b). The promise of the Father would be the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father would send in Jesus' Name.
When Jesus lived among them in the flesh, the disciples listened to Him and learned from His teachings, literally following in the path of their Lord. But their Lord would not always live in the flesh among them. When His earthly ministry was complete, Jesus would leave them to return to the Father, yet they would not be alone. Jesus said, "The Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My Name, He will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you" (John 14:26). The Spirit, Jesus promised, would guide His disciples "into all the truth" (John 16:13b). Although Jesus would not be there in the flesh, the Spirit would lead them in the ways of the Lord. The Spirit would bring to mind all that Jesus had taught them so that they, in turn, could teach others.
Everything came about as Jesus promised. His path led to the cross, where He offered up His life as the perfect sacrifice to atone for the sins of the world. Raised to life again, He appeared for forty days to His followers, proving to them that He was alive and teaching them about the kingdom of God. He ascended to rule at the right hand of the Father and—as instructed—the disciples waited. Ten days after Jesus' ascension, on the festival of Pentecost, the promised Spirit was poured out on the little band of disciples. The Spirit taught them, led them into the truth, and enlightened them to see God's love and mercy "that have been from of old," to see all the promises of God fulfilled in Jesus. The Spirit worked through the disciples' proclamation of the Gospel, drawing people to faith in Jesus and teaching them to walk in the way of the Lord.
"I wait all day long," the psalmist prayed, but we need not wait. In the water and Word of Holy Baptism, the Spirit comes to dwell within us, creating faith in our hearts and bringing to us the life and forgiveness won by our crucified and risen Savior. "Lead me ... teach me," we pray, and the Spirit answers, leading us in the truth and teaching us to follow the path of the Lord.
THE PRAYER: Lord, by the power of Your Spirit, help us to grow strong in faith through the study of Your Word. Lead us each day to walk in Your ways. Amen.
This Daily Devotion was written by Dr. Carol Geisler.
1. Are you generally a follower or a leader? Does your role change from time to time? Why?
2. How does God teach us His ways?
3. Have you ever been a part of another person coming to faith? How were you involved?
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