Daily Meditations Published by IT Fellowship of North America & Europe Diocese of Mar Thoma Church
Subscribe to this blog
Word for the day by Christian Education Forum
Creation Praising the Glory of God Ephesians 1:3-12 V.3: “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ”
The verses for today’s devotion, which is the opening verses of letter to the Ephesians where Paul describes the magnificent thing God the Father has done in Christ for us. God’s plan is simple, to unite everything in heaven and earth in Christ. The whole purpose of creation is the glory and praise of God that is what we are predestined for. Creation is indebted to the creator. God the creator rejoices when the creation is in harmony with the will of the creator. This is “the” gospel of God. The three succinct attributes of God expressed in this passage are grace, gospel, and glory.
The Grace of the God is “the reason” for existence. Everything is by the grace of God, in accordance with the gospel of God and ultimately for the glory of God. When we study this passage, very soon we start realizing the magnitude of blessings befitting the heavenly realm in our lives. One such overlooked heavenly blessing is the ability to breathe aided by nothing. We, who have read about, seen, or experienced Covid-19, can very well relate the significance of the ability to breathe aided by nothing. Why are we being blessed in such a heavenly measure? We are chosen in God's grace and sanctified in His will- even before creation of this world- to be holy and blameless in his sight. This is the predisposition, what we are meant for. The Grace of God is the reason why we are, where we are, and what we are at any given point in time. Whatever our circumstances are, we can find innumerable blessings. We may question, why is all this grace showered upon us? It is the richness of God and our understanding shall be "to the praise of his glorious grace" (v6).
The Gospel of God is the basis of heaven and earth. What is the gospel of God? The gospel of God is simple, He and us living in harmony. This can only be possible when we as the creation realize our place in the order of creation and fulfill our duty, which is nothing but contributing towards the harmony God Almighty expects through our being, thoughts, words, and deeds. Along the way we humans faltered, causing deep pain and distress to the Creator. Here starts the next chapter of God's gospel, redemption of his creation. None other than His son is deputed to accomplish this and the price He decided was the son of His blood. Why would any loving father pay this self-piercing price? The reason is, we too were predestined and adopted as sons and daughters even before our birth. The redemption through the blood of Jesus Christ is the restoration from our fallen state to the divine order expected in creation. Why forgiveness of sins and redemption through the Son of God's blood? Paul teaches, "in order that we, who were the first to put our hope in Christ, might be for the praise of his glory." (v12). Heavenly mysteries were revealed abundantly during Jesus's earthly life among us, wisdom was imparted, and understanding was given with tremendous opportunity to reconcile. Redemption was lavished upon us for the reconciliation, so we too have an opportunity to praise God.
Glory of God is the purpose. We are part and parcel of God’s glory. We the finite come to being by absorbing from the infinite. We are counted, included, and valued. Our unity with the creator, and our salvation was the mission of Jesus. What is the significance of this mission? It is to worship the one who is worthy of honor and glory. Every mission shall lead to worship. The mission of the Church is the extension of Jesus’s mission with both centrifugal and centripetal dimension. Jesus’ mission was to reach out, facilitate reconciliation and enable worship to give God the glory he deserves. Mission for each and every one of us shall be the same; it shall culminate in giving glory to God and worshipping Him.
Heavenly father, give us the wisdom to understand your heavenly blessings which we are at times taking for granted. Use us for your mission, and through your grace cleanse us to worship you joyously. Amen.
Thought for the day “Mission is not the ultimate goal of the church. Worship is. Missions exist because worship doesn't.” John Piper
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
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
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