Come, Follow Me – January 22, 2018

After John was put in prison, Jesus went into Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God. “The time has come,” he said. “The kingdom of God is near. Repent and believe the good news!” As Jesus walked beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will make you fishers of men.” At once they left their nets and followed him. When he had gone a little farther, he saw James son of Zebedee and his brother John in a boat, preparing their nets. Without delay he called them, and they left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired men and followed him.
Mark 1:14-20

Come, Follow Me


Daily Devotion – January 22, 2018

Devotion based on Mark 1:14-20

See series: Devotions

Jesus is a king who has a kingdom and he calls us to follow him as our leader. Now we are usually suspicious of people who claim to be great leaders, especially political leaders like kings. We wonder if they are gathering a following so they might use their power over us. We wonder if they want to use us and control us to get something from us. So, in general, we are cautious about following those who claim to be great leaders.

But that is not what happened in Galilee 2000 years ago. Jesus came proclaiming that he was a king, and he had a kingdom, and that all people should follow him. The amazing thing was men like Simon Peter, Andrew, James and John did. They left everything to follow Jesus.

They were so willing to follow Jesus because Jesus was a different kind of king who had a different kind of kingdom. Instead of taking from people, he gave great blessings to people. Instead of gathering a following to control, he gathered a following to set them free. He didn’t rule to take the lives of others. He came to give up his life to rescue people from sin and death. That is why the first disciples were willing to give up everything and follow Jesus.

Now what about you? Are you willing to follow this King? Jesus’ kingdom is one of freedom and forgiveness. It is a kingdom of good news—the good news of eternal salvation.

Repent and follow Jesus your King!

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, you are my King. I repent of all my sins before you. I ask you to wash them all away. And now teach me to follow you in all my ways that I might bring glory to your name! Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

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Jesus is the Light – January 21, 2018

The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned.
Isaiah 9:2

Jesus is the Light


Daily Devotion – January 21, 2018

Devotion based on

Isaiah 9:2

See series: Devotions

Light is certainly one of the most precious things in our world. Without it, we can’t do much of anything. The most simple tasks become all but impossible when darkness envelopes us instead of light.

A lack of light can also strike fear into our hearts and be quite dangerous. If you have ever tried navigating your way through complete darkness, you know this to be true. When you can’t even see your hand two inches in front of your face, it is impossible to walk with purpose and confidence. This is what life is like without Jesus.

Without Jesus there is no purpose in life. Every reason our world produces for our existence comes up empty in the end. Without the light of Jesus we would be forced to stumble our way through life, bumping into blessings without knowing where they come from and tripping over trials and problems. As we stumble we would always have the terrifying understanding that death could be right around the corner.

Thank God for sending Jesus to be the Light that illuminates our lives. He gives us hope and purpose. He came to remove the darkness of sin by shedding his blood and scatter the shadow of death by rising from the grave. Since our sins have been paid for by his blood, we have the sure confidence that every one of our sins has been removed—even the ones that weigh us down with the most guilt. Since he rose from the grave we have the rock-solid guarantee that death is not the end for us. We too will rise with him to live eternally.

With Jesus lighting up our lives we can live with confidence and purpose. The confidence comes from knowing that nothing can change the fact that our sins have been washed away by his blood and our eternal life guaranteed by his resurrection. Our purpose now is to live every moment to his glory. We strive to make the best use of all the gifts he has given us and do everything we can to share Jesus with others so they too may walk in his light.

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, this sinful world is a dark place. Thank you for scattering the darkness of sin and death for us. Continue to light up our lives that we may live for you and share your light with others. Amen.

This devotion was selected from the Daily Devotion archive.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

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Unite and Conquer – January 20, 2018

I appeal to you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another so that there may be no divisions among you and that you may be perfectly united in mind and thought. My brothers, some from Chloe’s household have informed me that there are quarrels among you. What I mean is this: One of you says, “I follow Paul”; another, “I follow Apollos”; another, “I follow Cephas”; still another, “I follow Christ.” Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Were you baptized into the name of Paul?
1 Corinthians 1:10-13

Unite and Conquer


Daily Devotion – January 20, 2018

Devotion based on 1 Corinthians 1:10-13

See series: Devotions

“Divide and conquer” is an effective strategy in warfare. Once you divide your enemy’s forces, you can overwhelm each smaller group one by one.
“Divide and conquer” is also an effective strategy in spiritual warfare. It is one of the devil’s favorite tactics. He works hard to divide Christian congregations. He realizes that if Christians are busy fighting each other they will be too busy to fight him. He realizes that if Christians are shouting at one another they will be too busy to shout the Good News of sins forgiven to those around them. He knows that if Christians are jealous and angry and bitter toward one another they will be much less likely to love and honor and serve one another.
The apostle Paul understood these things. So, in his first letter to the Christians in the city of Corinth he encouraged them to fight against this effective strategy of their enemy. In the case of the Corinthians, they were divided over which of their leaders they liked better. Some preferred Paul, others Apollos, etc. Paul reminded them that Jesus was the only one who had paid for their sins on the cross. Rather than be divided over which of their leaders they liked, they ought to be united in their love for Christ.
If the devil is dividing you from your fellow Christians, let the love of Christ fill your heart and overcome the devil’s temptations. Do not allow the devil to “divide and conquer” you and your fellow Christians. Rather, “unite and conquer” him!

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, I know that the devil is a powerful enemy. But, I also know that you are a more powerful ally. Let there be no divisions in your Church. Unite us as one in the mission to love one another and to tell others of your great love for all. Amen.

This devotion was selected from the Daily Devotion archive.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

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Bulletin- THE THIRD SUNDAY AFTER THE EPIPHANY JANUARY 21, 2018

EMMANUEL and ST. JOHN’S

Evangelical Lutheran Churches

Mecan and Montello, WI

Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod

C:\Users\secretary\Downloads\boats_16669ac.jpg

THE THIRD SUNDAY AFTER THE EPIPHANY

JANUARY 21, 2018


WELCOME TO OUR CHURCH! We extend a warm welcome to everyone today, especially our visitors. In the bulletin you’ll find an outline of today’s service, a calendar of events and other bits of information. In the red hymn book you’ll find the songs we sing and the order of service that we follow. If you would like a large print hymnal or bulletin please ask one of our ushers and they will gladly assist you. Restrooms and nursery area are located the parish hall at Emmanuel and in the lower level and “link-way” at St. John’s. It’s nice to have you visit today. May God bless our worship together!

A PERSONAL PRAYER FOR THOSE GATHERED FOR WORSHIP Redeemed, restored, forgiven, through Jesus precious blood Heirs of his home in heaven, oh, praise our pardoning God! Praise him in tuneful measures who gave His Son to die;

Praise him whose sevenfold treasures enrich and sanctify.

(Hymn 388:1) Heavenly Father: Through your Gospel in Word and Sacrament, forgive my sins, strengthen my faith, and make me a “fisher of men.” –all to your glory. Amen.

GOD’S WORD FOR TODAY Jesus is Revealed by Preaching Repentance – Is God calling you today to sell everything you have, give it away and move to a foreign country to be a penniless missionary? His Word does not say that. God does call some people to public ministry. He sends some far from home. He gives some of his ministers hard assignments. Note: He calls all believers by our baptisms to be ready to leave anything for him. He left everything for us. He gave his holy life for us.

ORDER OF SERVICE–LITURGY

“Service of the Word” (hymnal page 38)

PASTOR’S GREETING

Note: At Sunday St. John’s & Emmanuel…

CHOIR “Be Strong in the Lord” (in place of opening hymn)

Note: At Wednesday St. John’s…

OPENING HYMN 80 “Angels from the Realms of Glory” (printed in hymnal, all sing)

(Please stand)

LITURGY (hymnal page 38, read & sung responsively)

PRAYER OF THE DAY

(Please be seated for the day’s Scripture readings)

SCRIPTURE READING THEME

The Lord’s Call Changes Hearts and Lives

OLD TESTAMENT LESSON Jonah 3:1-5,10

Jonah’s preaching changed hearts and lives in Nineveh

Then the word of the LORD came to Jonah a second time: “Go to the great city of Nineveh and proclaim to it the message I give you.”

Jonah obeyed the word of the LORD and went to Nineveh. Now Nineveh was a very important city—a visit required three days. On the first day, Jonah started into the city. He proclaimed: “Forty more days and Nineveh will be overturned.” The Ninevites believed God. They declared a fast, and all of them, from the greatest to the least, put on sackcloth.

When God saw what they did and how they turned from their evil ways, he had compassion and did not bring upon them the destruction he had threatened.

PSALM 62 (hymnal page 88, men sing first line, women sing second line, all sing refrains and Gloria)

EPISTLE LESSON 1 Corinthians 7:29-31

Live your life in view of the heavenly goal knowing your time is short

What I mean, brothers, is that the time is short. From now on those who have wives should live as if they had none; those who mourn, as if they did not; those who are happy, as if they were not; those who buy something, as if it were not theirs to keep; those who use the things of the world, as if not engrossed in them. For this world in its present form is passing away.

VERSE OF THE DAY Alleluia! Jesus went throughout Galilee, teaching, preaching, and healing every disease. Alleluia! (Matthew 4:23)

LITURGY (hymnal page 40, all sing)

“Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!”

(Please be seated)

GOSPEL LESSON Mark 1:14-20 (today’s sermon text)

“I will make you fishers of men”

After John was put in prison, Jesus went into Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God. “The time has come,” he said. “The kingdom of God is near. Repent and believe the good news!”

As Jesus walked beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will make you fishers of men.” At once they left their nets and followed him.

When he had gone a little farther, he saw James son of Zebedee and his brother John in a boat, preparing their nets. Without delay he called them, and they left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired men and followed him.

After the reading of the Gospel, all sing:

“Praise be to you, O Christ”

(Please be seated)

CHILDREN’S MESSAGE

At Emmanuel…all children ages 2-6 are invited to Nursery Sunday School in the parish hall.

SERMON HYMN 560 “I Hear the Savior Calling”

(printed in hymnal, all sing)

SERMON Mark 1:14-20 “Our Lord Is Calling”

  1. His call caught us to be full-time followers of him
  2. His call directs us to be people-catchers for him

(Please stand after the sermon)

APOSTLES CREED (hymnal page 41, all read)

(Please be seated)

OFFERING, WORSHIPER GREETINGS & FRIENDSHIP REGISTERS

(Please stand)

MISSION PRAYER (read by pastor)

INTERCESSORY PRAYERS (read by pastor)

– For those hospitalized, ill, shut-in and facing trials: George Alexander, Chuck Boetcher, Gale “Blackie” Boyd, Alexandria Buehrens (Bob & Carolyn’s great granddaughter), Bob & Carolyn Buehrens, Gene & Sharon Crook, Harley & Liola Crown, Agnes Dassow, Elaine Emond (Mark’s mother), Marjorie Fabian, Mike Farrell, Donna Gatzke, Kellen Grucza (Judy Fandrey’s daughter), Ardis Henning, Laurana Hoffman (Tim’s daughter), Drake Hunter (Bill & Cally’s grandson), Mary Isberner, Geri Kerl (Sue Brown’s mother), Bob Klapper (Sandy’s husband), Anna Madigan, Linda Malsack, Sherry Miller (Candace Sonnenberg’s sister), Marion Neuman (Marjorie Fabian’s sister), Steve Parrish, Wilma Rudolph, Bob Schrank, Becky Schulz (Kristen Cragin’s sister), Tim Schultz, Roger Stellick (Doug’s uncle), Bob Wegner, Pastor Jim Weiland – (added this week: Gale “Blackie” Boyd, Ardis Henning, Steve Parrish, Pastor Jim Weiland from Merrill, Pastor Z’s classmate)
– For Marla Ohrmundt called by St. John’s voters on 1/7 to serve as Little Lambs pre-school director through the end of the school year
– For loved ones far away

LORD’S PRAYER (hymnal page 43a, all read)

(Please be seated)

HYMN 569 “O Christ, Our True and Only Light” (printed in hymnal, all sing)

(Please stand)

LITURGY (hymnal page 43b, read & sung responsively)

(Please be seated)

CLOSING HYMN 323 “Almighty Father, Bless the Word”


ANNOUNCEMENTS

Theme for next Sunday (1/28):

The Fourth Sunday after the Epiphany: Jesus Heals the Hopeless

Note: Please give your completed friendship register page to an usher or pastor as you leave today’s service.

ACTIVITIES FOR THE WEEK JANUARY 21-JANUARY 27
Sun. 8:00 A.M. Emmanuel Worship
8:20 A.M. Emmanuel Nursery Sunday School
8:30 A.M. St. John’s Sunday School
9:00 A.M. Emmanuel/St. John’s Adult Bible Study
10:00 A.M. St. John’s Worship
11:15 A.M. New Member Dinner at St. John’s
Mon. 7:30 P.M. Adult Bible Study at St. John’s
Tues.
Wed. 10:00 A.M. Adult Bible Study at St. John’s
1:40 P.M. St. John’s School/Little Lambs early dismissal
2:15 P.M. Public School Teen Confirmation class at St. John’s
6:30 P.M. St. John’s Worship
7:30 P.M. Bible Information Class at St. John’s
Thurs. 10:00 A.M. Montello Care Center devotion with communion
6:00 P.M. Griefshare at St. John’s lower level begins (2 of 13 weeks)
Fri.
Sat.
SCHEDULE FOR NEXT SUNDAY, JANUARY 28, 2018

Theme for next Sunday (1/28):

The Fourth Sunday after the Epiphany: Jesus Heals the Hopeless

8:00 A.M. Emmanuel Worship
8:20 A.M. Emmanuel Nursery Sunday School
8:30 A.M. St. John’s Sunday School
9:00 A.M. St. John’s Adult Bible Study
9:00 A.M. Emmanuel Council meeting
10:00 A.M. St. John’s Worship with communion
2:00 P.M. WLA Let’s Celebrate

MEMORIAL In loving memory of Walter Bubolz, $75.00 has been given to St. John’s Church and School by Terri Champine. Thank you for your gift.

“You will be enriched in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God.”

2 Corinthians 9:11

MEMORIAL In loving memory of Irv Krueger, $100.00 was given to St. John’s Debt Reduction Fund by Diane (Krueger) Hintz in remembrance of Irv’s 75th birthday on January 14th. Thank you for your gift.

I will give thanks to you, LORD, with all my heart; I will tell of all your wonderful deeds. Psalm 9:1

See the source imageTHANK YOU to all our St. John’s members and Mecan members for your prayers on my brother, Dennis Umland’s, behalf. After a 2 year battle with cancer, our kind and merciful Lord has ended his battle and has taken him home to Heaven. Your prayers were appreciated and helped us all, as we know they work. God bless you all, dear church family.

–Harold & Judy Fandrey

ST. JOHN’S OFFERING STATEMENT SIGN-UP The signup sheet is located in the church link way. Please sign up if you wish to have a copy of your 2017 offering statement.

ST. JOHN’S OFFERING ENVELOPES 2018 are located in the link way of church. Please pick yours up if you haven’t yet! If you do not have a box, feel free to contact pastor or the office and we will get one to you!

See the source image2017 OFFERING STATEMENTS If you have signed up to receive your 2017 offering statement, please pick it up in the link way.


See the source image https://ssl.gstatic.com/ui/v1/icons/mail/images/cleardot.gifWELCOME NEW MEMBERS at Emmanuel & St. John’s since December 14, 2015!  You will be guests at a Welcome Dinner TODAY Sunday, January 21, beginning at approximately 11:15 a.m. following today’s St. John’s worship service.  Your hosts will be the members & families of the St. John’s Accessibility Task Force, St. John’s Shepherd Team, Emmanuel Council & Leaders, and Pastor & Mrs. Zietlow. See you soon!

MEMBERSHIP CLASS A new “Bible Information Class” began Wed 1/3/18 at 7:30pm in pastor’s office/conference room at St. John’s.  Alternate days/times can also be scheduled. Free study guides are available from pastor…just ask.

NEW WEEKDAY/EVE BIBLE CLASS Beginning January 2018, we started a new weekday/eve Bible Study entitled: “Your Questions–Scriptures Answers: Adiaphora” (things that God doesn’t command or forbid in the Bible and how we are to properly use our Christian freedom).  We meet at St. John’s in the pastor’s office/conference room Monday 7:30pm and Wednesday 10am. “Therefore let us leave the elementery teachings about Christ and go on to maturity…” (Hebrews 6:1)

LENT BY CANDLELIGHT Ladies, you won’t want to miss the second ever Lent by Candlelight on Sunday, February 11, 2018 at 5:00 PM at St. John’s Lutheran Church, Montello. Please plan to join us for an evening of visiting, beautiful music and scrumptious snacks. All women are invited and are encouraged to invite their friends to prepare their hearts for Lent. There is no charge for this event. Seating is limited, so RSVP by emailing christavantreeck@gmail.com or signing up in the link way at St. John’s Lutheran Church, Montello.

LUTHER PREP SCHOOL AUCTION GALA Donations of new items are currently being accepted for the Luther Prep Auction Gala to be held on Saturday, April 21. If you have something to share it can be brought to the Mission Advancement office anytime during the LPS school day. If you cannot attend the Gala in person this would be a great way to show support! Monetary donations can be made online:

http://events.readysetauction.com/lutherpreparatoryschool/carnival

Deadline for donations is March 9. Questions? Contact Sue at 920-262-8104. 

Your support benefits future pastors, teachers, and lay leaders.

SUNDAY BIBLE STUDY Following the Sunday 8:00 a.m. worship service at Emmanuel, usually about 9:00 a.m., all are invited to the parish hall for our study of “Timely Topics–Timeless Truths” led by Lucas Stelter.  At 9:00 a.m. in the St. John’s sanctuary, all are invited to our study of the New Testament book of James: “Concrete Christianity” led by Pastor John Dolan and others. “Grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ,” (2 Peter 3:18)

SECOND IMPRESSIONS THRIFT STORE is making plans to celebrate its one year anniversary, which is February 9th! Be sure to watch church bulletins and/or Facebook for the latest news!

The Thrift Store has been very blessed with approximately 100 volunteers who so graciously and generously give of their time and talents! Many referrals by our customers are helping make our customer list grow! Volunteers continue to be needed to help keep up with the growth!

Customers may shop the store which provides a friendly, Christian atmosphere, with clean, well-organized, quality merchandise at great prices! Store hours are Tuesdays through Fridays 10a.m. to 6p.m. and Saturdays 10a.m. to 3p.m. It is located at 325 Winnebago Drive, Fond du Lac. We are also thankful to everyone who has so generously donated to the store! It certainly is a blessing. The donations have proved to be popular with our customers. Donations may be dropped off Mondays 10a.m. to 4p.m., Tuesdays through Fridays 10a.m. to 5p.m., and Saturdays 10a.m. to 2p.m. Thank you to everyone who has helped make our store a success!

CHRISTIAN ONE-LINERS (from a WELS pastor) We’re called to be his witnesses, not lawyers or judges.

See the source image

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Interactive Faith online Bible study
The next Interactive Faith series will begin Jan. 10, 2018, and run each Wednesday night at 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. (central) through Feb. 7, 2018. Rev. Daniel Habben, St. John’s, Saint John, Antigua, will lead the study titled “Isaiah: God confronts and comforts his people.” Learn more at wels.net/interactivefaith.

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WELS Military Services produces a weekly devotion written especially for people in the military and their families. Now, you can subscribe to have the devotions delivered to your inbox. Subscribe for the military devotions and more at wels.net/subscribe.

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Subscribe to the WELS Together e-newsletter to stay connected with your synod and its ministry. Also, don’t miss the twice-monthly videos, expanding on important and interesting synod news.

Connecting WELS members
The Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod offers several ways to connect members through social media: facebook.com/welslutherans, twitter.com/welstweets, Instagram.com/welslutherans, and vimeo.com/wels.

USHERS

Emmanuel January 21 Darrell Buchholz, Paul Wuerch, Jim Stuempges January 28 DuWayne Sommerfeld, Paul Dahlke, Joe Heller

St. John’s January 21 Dennis Wacholtz; Chief, Jim Eisermann, Corey Kaul, Jerre Duerr, Robin Smith January 28 (C) Jack Yates; Chief, Del Henke, Joe Zauner, Richard Freitag, Gerhardt Voigt

GREETERS TODAY Jon & Jean Sheller

Attendance Emmanuel St. John’s
1-14 1-17 59 139
SJ ALTAR COMMITTEE CONTACT JANUARY 2018 Diane Eisermann & Delores Cotte

 

Welcome To Our Visitors!

Please Sign Our Guest Register

Visit our website & Facebook link at: www.stjohnsmontello.org

Pastor Peter Zietlow Office (608) 297-2321

Cell & Text (608) 408-7830, E-mail: ZietlowPL6@hotmail.com

Principal Tim Hemling (608) 745-2549

Teacher Karin Stellick (920) 342-3689

Teacher Sara Borck (858) 731-7919

Teacher Sandra Hemling (608) 745-2776

Parish/School Secretary Ciara Neuhauser (608) 297-2866

Altar Ladies Elaine Kelm (920) 344-0025 &

Carolyn Rosenthal 589-5036

Mail to: 313 E Montello St, Montello, WI 53949

OR scsecretary@stjohnsmontello.org

Winnebago Lutheran Academy

Principal Mr. David Schroeder/WLA office (920) 921-4930

WLA website: www.wlavikings.org

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The Golden Rule – January 19, 2018

“In everything, do to others what you would have them do to you.”
Matthew 7:12

The Golden Rule


Daily Devotion – January 19, 2018

Devotion based on Matthew 7:12

See series: Devotions

These words from Jesus in Matthew chapter 7 are commonly known as the Golden Rule: “Do unto others as you would have them do to you.” Many, if not all of us, have heard those words spoken to us often by parents, teachers, and anyone else trying to teach us good morals. Whether we were arguing with our siblings or squabbling with a classmate, we likely heard the encouragement to treat others as we would like to be treated.

It sounds nice, doesn’t it? It sounds reasonable. It sounds like a nice goal. If we all followed the Golden Rule, we would all get along wonderfully and we wouldn’t have problems or conflicts with anyone. That sounds great! It sounds so easy!

But it isn’t. Like most things Jesus teaches us in his Sermon on the Mount, putting the Golden Rule into practice in our lives is very difficult. More than that, it’s impossible. We’ d much rather, and so often, end up treating others the way they treat us—eye for an eye, insult for insult, and sarcastic comment for sarcastic comment. If someone cuts us off in traffic, we shout angrily. If someone offends us, we lash out at them. If someone slights us in the least, we strive to settle the score.

Isn’t it remarkable how Jesus is so very different from sinners like you and me? Had you and I been on that cross suffering for sins we didn’t commit, we would have shouted terrible things at those who insulted us. We would have called on God to strike those who were tormenting us. But in love for sinners, Jesus instead prayed: “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” And to one crucified next to him he said: “Today, you will be with me in paradise.”

Our Savior Jesus, rather than retaliate and get back at us for every time we have sinned against him, willingly gave his life on the cross for you and for me. He is the only one who ever perfectly kept the Golden Rule. By the grace of God, you and I get the credit for our Savior’s perfect life and our sins are paid for through his innocent suffering and death in our place.

Jesus’ amazing love moves you and me to follow the Golden Rule in thankfulness for all he has done for our salvation.

Prayer:
Dear Jesus, thank you for never getting even with me. Forgive me for the shabby way I have treated others. Fill me with your love that I may do to others what I would have them do to me. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

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Awesome Promise! – January 18, 2018

No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.
1 Corinthians 10:13

Awesome Promise!


Daily Devotion – January 18, 2018

Devotion based on 1 Corinthians 10:13

See series: Devotions

“In sickness and in health… till death do us part.” “I’ll pay you back double, as soon as I get my check.” “We’ll play a game tomorrow night. I’m just too tired tonight.”

We make and receive promises all the time. Unfortunately, as you well know, sinful human beings also break their promises all the time. Whether it is a spouse, a friend, a parent, or really anyone else for that matter, not every promise, even the most well-intentioned, is kept.

God is not like people. When he makes a promise, he always keeps it. “God is not a man, that he should lie, nor a son of man, that he should change his mind. Does he speak and then not act? Does he promise and not fulfill?” (Numbers 23:19). That means when we find a promise that God has shared with us on the pages of his Word, we know that promise will be kept.

There are some wonderful promises in the Bible. Today’s Bible verses voice one of them: “No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it” (1 Corinthians 10:13).

No doubt you have experienced those times when you just felt completely stuck and seemingly there was nothing you could do but give in to temptation, whatever it may be. After all, you reason, “God will understand. This situation is unique.”

The reality is that you are never stuck. Why? Because God is faithful. He keeps his promises and he has promised that you will never be tempted beyond what you can bear. When you feel that God has overestimated you, and you are indeed in a situation that is too much for you, he promises to provide a way out. “Nothing is impossible with God” (Luke 1:37).

How awesome this promise is! God doesn’t just tell us how he wants us to live our lives, he promises to help us when we are tempted to go against his will. We are never stuck. There is always a way out that is God-pleasing. But please notice what is not said here. God does not promise that it will be easy, quick, or fun, according to our sinful nature. What he does promise, and of this we can be absolutely sure, is that he will give us exactly the help we need to overcome temptation.

Prayer:
Heavenly Father, there are times when I feel overwhelmed. Thank you for your promise to help when I am tempted. Help me to trust that promise because you are the One who sent your Son to die for me and you are faithful. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

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Speak, O Lord – January 17, 2018

The boy Samuel ministered before the LORD under Eli. In those days the word of the LORD was rare; there were not many visions. One night Eli, whose eyes were becoming so weak that he could barely see, was lying down in his usual place. The lamp of God had not yet gone out, and Samuel was lying down in the temple of the LORD, where the ark of God was. Then the LORD called Samuel. Samuel answered, “Here I am.” And he ran to Eli and said, “Here I am; you called me. “But Eli said, “I did not call; go back and lie down.” So he went and lay down. Again the LORD called, “Samuel!” And Samuel got up and went to Eli and said, “Here I am; you called me.” “My son,” Eli said, “I did not call; go back and lie down.” Now Samuel did not yet know the LORD: The word of the LORD had not yet been revealed to him. The LORD called Samuel a third time, and Samuel got up and went to Eli and said, “Here I am; you called me.” Then Eli realized that the LORD was calling the boy. So Eli told Samuel, “Go and lie down, and if he calls you, say, ‘Speak, LORD, for your servant is listening.’” So Samuel went and lay down in his place. The LORD came and stood there, calling as at the other times, “Samuel! Samuel!”
1 Samuel 3:1–10

Speak, O Lord


Daily Devotion – January 17, 2018

Devotion based on 1 Samuel 3:1–10

See series: Devotions

“I prayed hard about this new opportunity, and I just feel as though God is telling me I should pursue it.”

“My life is in upheaval. God, what are you trying to tell me?”

Does God’s voice seem to be silent in your life? Do you wonder what, if any, direction God is giving you?

We are naturally inquisitive creatures. We want answers. We have the Bible, but the Bible doesn’t tell us everything. Can we count on God to communicate with us as he did with Samuel?

God has not promised to speak to us that way (Hebrews 1:2). However, God’s voice has never been more readily accessible than it is today. It is the recorded Word of God in the Bible. Even though there are days when I don’t pick up my Bible, I can count on it being there. Even if I don’t have a copy, I can easily buy one. I can read the Bible online. With a swipe of my finger, I can look up a passage in multiple versions and even in various languages. If we cannot hear God speaking to us, God is not the problem. The problem is that we are not listening.

No, the Bible doesn’t tell us everything we want to know. It does tell us everything we need to know. God will not tell us what college to attend, what job to take, the person to marry, or how many children to have. He does say whatever we do, we are to do for the glory of God. He doesn’t tell us if we will avoid trouble today. He does promise to work everything out for the eternal good of those who love him. He does not tell us why we are suffering. He does invite us to find comfort in him. He does not tell us how or when we will die. He does tell us that whoever believes in Jesus, who willingly offered up his life to pay for our sins, has eternal life.

Prayer:
Forgive me, Lord, for listening more to the world than your Word. Lead me, Lord, to delight in your Word and to turn a deaf ear to wicked advice. Speak, O Lord, for your servant is listening. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

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A Mystery Solved – January 16, 2018

In reading this, then, you will be able to understand my insight into the mystery of Christ…This mystery is that through the gospel the Gentiles are heirs together with Israel, members together of one body, and sharers together in the promise in Christ Jesus.
Ephesians 3:4,6

A Mystery Solved


Daily Devotion – January 16, 2018

Devotion based on Ephesians 3:4,6

See series: Devotions

Do you enjoy a good mystery? As the author offers clues, anticipation grows until the book’s end, the mystery is solved and we pass it on!

Today’s Spirit-inspired author is the apostle Paul. This “mystery of Christ” is not a mystery to remain hidden nor beyond human comprehending. There are Bible mysteries like that, such as, the truth that God is a Trinity: one God in three separate but equal persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

Another example would be the conception and birth of Jesus. The Son of God came to our world as a truly human infant while continuing to be true God! We accept those profound truths by Spirit-given faith. “Faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see” (Hebrews 11:1).

Paul speaks here, however, of a mystery that requires revelation but can be solved!

The Old Testament held several clues. Adam and Eve heard God tell the devil, “He—the offspring of the woman—will crush your head” (Genesis 3:15). God told Abram, the human forefather of the Messiah, “All peoples on earth will be blessed through you” (Genesis 12:3). Isaiah foretold that God “has laid on him (the Messiah, Jesus) the iniquity of us all” (Isaiah 53:6). The actual event culminated in three New Testament days that included a cross, a grave, and on the third day, an empty tomb. Jesus’ payment was complete and sufficient. The apostles wrote the final chapters: “Through the gospel the Gentiles (all non-Jews) are heirs together with Israel, members together of one body, and sharers together in the promise in Christ Jesus.”

Though first sent to the nation of Israel, Jesus came to save all people. “There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus” (Galatians 3:28). Because Jesus was sent for all people, we have the certainty of our own salvation by faith in him. Additionally, we see the urgency of our mission, to spread the gospel far and wide that many more may hear and believe.

Who is the Savior sent for all mankind? Jesus, your Savior! Mystery solved! Pass it on!

Prayer:
Lord, let the light of your gospel shine worldwide, through me, too! Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

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Follow Me – January 15, 2018

[Jesus] said to [Philip], “Follow me.”
John 1:43

Follow Me


Daily Devotion – January 15, 2018

Devotion based on John 1:43

See series: Devotions

Now I don’t think we would say this out loud, but do you ever wonder, “Is Jesus really worth following?” I mean, we have access to the latest and greatest ideas, philosophies, and scientific discoveries. Sure, Jesus said and did some great things, but isn’t he just one great thinker among many? What could Jesus really offer, when we have access to so many other great leaders?

If you have ever had such thoughts, you’re not alone. When Jesus called his first disciples, there was a man named Nathaniel. When his friend Philip invited him to come and see Jesus of Nazareth, Nathaniel replied, “Nazareth! Can anything good come from there?” (John 1:46). Nathaniel wondered why he should go see someone from some no-name town, born into a no-name family. What could he possibly offer Nathaniel? Jesus wasn’t from Jerusalem, the place of great scholarship and clout; he was just from some insignificant town in the north.

Nevertheless, Nathaniel did concede and went to see Jesus, and when he did, he was surprised. Jesus didn’t rebuke him for asking his skeptical question. In fact, he almost praised him, calling Nathaniel “a true Israelite in whom there is nothing false.” Then Jesus told him that he knew him and saw him, when he was sitting under a fig tree before Philip spoke to him.

Hearing Jesus’ words, Nathaniel realized and believed that Jesus was the Messiah, the one God sent to bring salvation.

Even after Nathaniel’s change of heart, Jesus had more to say. He told Nathaniel, “You believe because I told you I saw you under the fig tree. You shall see greater things than that.” He then added, “I tell you the truth, you shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man” (John 1:50-51).

Jesus was saying, “Nathaniel, I’m not only worth listening to, I am THE WAY back to the God of heaven. I am the one you need to follow above everybody else.”

Jesus extends that same message to you. He is the way back to our Father in heaven. Jesus made this vital claim. He didn’t say that he was just one way among many, or one variation of truth, or one possible way to life. Jesus said, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6). Then he backed up his claims by rising from the dead.

Now Jesus is calling out to you to believe in him as your Savior and follow him as your loving Lord and Master.

Just like he said to his first disciples, he now says to you, “Come, follow me.”

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, forgive us for times we doubt who you are. You are the only way, truth, and life. Fill us with your Holy Spirit that we may follow you in everything we do. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

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The Passover – January 14, 2018

The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!
John 1:29

The Passover


Daily Devotion – January 14, 2018

Devotion based on John 1:29

See series: Devotions

By calling Jesus “the Lamb of God” John the Baptist pointed the people to one of their familiar festival—the Passover which commemorated God’s deliverance of his people from their bondage in the land of Egypt.
The LORD commissioned Moses and his brother Aaron to speak repeatedly to Egypt’s ruler informing him that the true God said: “Let my people go!” Nine times God sent a debilitating plague, but the ruler refused. In response to his stubbornness, God sent one last plague.
“At midnight the LORD struck down all the firstborn of Egypt.”(Exodus 12:29). However, the Israelites were spared because they did what God had commanded: they sacrificed the very best male lamb from their flock and spread its blood over the outer doorframe of their homes. When the LORD saw the blood of the unblemished lamb, he “passed over” the house and spared the firstborn. Immediately Egypt’s ruler released God’s people. By the blood of the sacrificial lamb the people were freed from slavery.
So when John the Baptist pointed to Jesus and proclaimed that he is “the Lamb of God,” he identified Jesus as the long-awaited Savior. Jesus is God’s Lamb by whose blood people are freed from the slavery of sin and death.
Jesus—the Lamb of God—loved us so much to offer his sinless life into death on a cross to secure our pardon before God the Father and flood our troubled souls with the peace that God gives us through Jesus. Let that truth flood your soul with the mercy we all desperately need and confident assurance we all urgently desire.

Prayer:
LORD God, work faith in my heart to believe in Jesus, “the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.” Amen.

This devotion was selected from the Daily Devotion archive.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

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