Word for the day by Christian Education Forum
Gospel for all People
Rev Anil T Thomas
Atlanta Hermon Mar Thoma Church
Charlotte Mar Thoma Congregation
North Carolina Mar Thoma Church, Raleigh
“He began by saying to them, "Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing." Vs.21
This text tells us about the mission of Christ. His mission was to reach out to the poor, to deliver the captives, to restore sight to the blind, and to lift the downtrodden. In His first sermon delivered in the synagogue of Nazareth, Jesus gives some detail to the nature of His mission. He tells us why He came to earth. Jesus stood to read in the synagogue, and read from Isaiah 61:1-2. After the reading Jesus said, "Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing."
I. Preach the Gospel to the Poor
Jesus is deeply concerned about poor people who are impoverished economically. It does not mean that He is not concerned about the wealthy or the common people who are not poor. By focusing on the neediest, He expresses concern for those who were despised by others. Jesus, anointed by the Spirit, preached the Gospel message of salvation that included repentance and faith, true righteousness and concern for the poor, deliverance from sin and sickness and about the good news of the coming kingdom and of the final triumph of good.
II. Proclaim Release to the Captives
Jesus is concerned about captives. During His days on earth, Jesus was concerned primarily with those who were enslaved by Satan. They were prisoners of Satan in a spiritual war. Millions of people today are captives of habits, attitudes, and lifestyles that they cannot control. The Spirit would enable Christ to proclaim the message of deliverance and freedom.
III. Proclaim Recovery of Sight to the Blind
Jesus is concerned not only about the people who were physically blind but the spiritually blind too. The mission of Christ was to proclaim to all who were blind that their sight and this proclamation is made in the power of the Spirit. Christ opened the eyes of the spiritually blind. Many came to faith in Him and followed Him.
IV. Set Free the Downtrodden
Jesus is concerned about the downtrodden. The ones who have been bruised by life. Many are broken and crushed spiritually and physically. Here, Jesus refers primarily to being downtrodden and bruised by others. The Spirit empowers Jesus to set at liberty those who are downtrodden and bruised.
Verse 19 provides the conclusion. Jesus was anointed to "proclaim the favorable year of the Lord."Jesus is still fulfilling His mission. He has anointed us with the Spirit to bring the message of good news to others through which we fulfill the mission of Christ. The Gospel is being preached to the poor, the captives are being set free, the blind are seeing, and the downtrodden are set at liberty. Will you believe and receive? This mission is as relevant today as it was then. We should commit ourselves to fulfilling His mission.
PRAYERGracious Lord, strengthen us to fulfill the mission that has been entrusted to us. Amen.
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY:“The spirit of Christ is the spirit of missions. The nearer we get to Him, the more intensely missionary we become.” ― Henry Martyn