Daily Meditations Published by IT Fellowship of North America & Europe Diocese of Mar Thoma Church
Word for the day by Christian Education Forum
Compassion that Leads to the Experience of the Kingdom of God Acts 4: 32-37 Vs 32: All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of their possessions was their own, but they shared everything they had.
The first church was growing rapidly, God was working miracles among them, and the Gospel was being boldly preached. As Acts, Chapter 4 vs 34 mentions they were “testifying to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus and God’s grace was powerfully at work in them all”. The members of the church made sure that none of their fellow believers were left in need. Rather than keeping their income for themselves, the earliest Christians were investing heavily in God’s work. They were obeying Jesus’ command to store up treasure in Heaven, rather than on Earth.
What is remarkable about the generosity of the first church is that it was entirely voluntary, and it was so sacrificial. Their generosity was free and it was abundant. The first Church was like a family, everyone gave willingly and wholeheartedly. They gave freely and willingly to their fellow Christians because they viewed them as fellow family members – as brothers and sisters in Christ. In 2 Corinthians 9:7, Paul reminds us, “Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.” Giving to the Church and to fellow Christians should be out of joy and compassion.
In verse 36, one man’s sacrificial giving is singled out for special mention: “Joseph, a Levite from Cyprus, whom the apostles called Barnabas sold a field he owned and brought the money and put it at the apostles’ feet.” There is no doubt that the Lord Jesus would have approved of Barnabas’ sacrificial giving. We know the story of the generous widow. A woman who was commended by Christ because she gave all she had to the Temple treasury. Her coins weren’t worth much, but she gave what she had. The widow’s offering and the generosity of Barnabas show their generosity, compassion, and dependence on God.
One of the greatest things that God’s Spirit does in Christians is to change our hearts. He changes our hearts to help us love God, and he changes our hearts to help us love God’s people. As we grow in our Christian faith we should not be surprised if our love for our Christian brothers and sisters increases – it’s a sign that the Holy Spirit is at work in us.
Dear God, give us a heart and mind to share our resources with those in need.
Thought for the day 2 Cor. 9: 7: Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.
Anish Thomas Mar Thoma Church of Greater Washington
Christian Education Forum, Diocese of NAE of the Mar Thoma Church
PRIESTHOOD: THE ANOINTED MINISTRY Exodus 40:12-16 Bring Aaron and his sons to the entrance to the Tent of Meeting... wash them with water. Then dress Aaron in the sacred garments, anoint him and consecrate him so he may serve me as priest (Exodus 40: 12-13). Priesthood among the people of God was a divine command and initiation. God wanted some people to be separated for the special ministry among his people. God appointed Aaron and his descendants to take up this kind of ministry among the people of God. Priests are always separated and appointed as channels that connect God with his people. All throughout the history of Israel, priests played an important role in connecting people with God and to lead and guide them in the statutes of God. But there are incidents in the Bible where the priests failed in their duties and that led the people to go away from God. So the priests have a special and significant ministry to perform in this world among his people. Two important things
Revelation for Liberation Acts 27:18-26 Sherine Thomas Long Island MTC, NY 20 When neither sun nor stars appeared for many days, and no small tempest raged, all hope of our being saved was at last abandoned. “After winter comes the summer. After night comes the dawn. And after every storm, there comes clear open skies” so said a Scottish clergyman from the 1600s. It’s been said, that hope can sometimes be the most dangerous weapon. However, it’s sometimes the hardest weapon to carry when you’re living with the loss of a loved one, something that almost feels like a terrible nightmare that’ll never go away. It’s a weapon difficult to carry when day in and day out no one seems to hear or see those tears that are shed or silent cries that are made during a heartfelt prayer. It’s a weapon difficult to carry as you see your loved one lying on that hospital bed. It’s a weapon difficult to carry as you search and seek out answers to tell a child as to why they’ve been a
Community Formation Around Resurrection Experience Acts 23:1-10 Vinod Johnson Carmel MTC, Boston, MA 6 When Paul noticed that some were Sadducees and others were Pharisees, he called out in the council, “Brothers, I am a Pharisee, a son of Pharisees. I am on trial concerning the hope of the resurrection of the dead.” Sometimes, the only thing that keeps you going through a brutal winter is the hope for the spring. It may have been a hard hope to hold on to this particular year in New England - a year in which Boston considered dumping not tea, but the ever growing mounds of snow into its harbor. And yet, the waist deep snow has dissolved away. White desolation has given way to increasingly visible green shoots of spring. A resurrection is at hand! In this passage, Paul tries to defend himself before the Sanhedrin Council. He seeks to drive a wedge between the Pharisees who believed in resurrection and the Sadducees who did not; even though neither believed in the resur