Friday, December 02, 2011

Devotional reading for this Sunday

Trust that the testimony of Christ gives everything necessary. God is faithful. You are not lacking in any spiritual gifts. Give thanks. Heaven and earth will pass away, but Christ’s words will not pass away.
Although listening to counterpoint in music can be immediately enjoyable, to learn precisely how counterpoint works as it does, one must attend carefully to both points and then discern carefully how the two work together to create the beauty they do.
Various apocalyptic texts in Scripture are primary example of this. It sounds notes like, “Beware!” “The sun will be darkened.” “About that day or hour no one knows.” As this melody flows along, preachers and teachers can be at risk of not attending to the counterpoint, which sounds out: “He is near.” “His words will not pass away.” “He will strengthen you to the end.”
Because Paul is living in anticipation of the day of our Lord Jesus Christ, he is strong in faith and thanksgiving. Waiting for Christ is a full and enriching activity for him, because he trusts he has been given all the gifts necessary as he waits. Paul wants us to imitate him in this (2 Thessalonians 3:7-9); we are called to find creative ways to imitate Paul’s encouragement, strength, resolve, faith, and thankfulness. We are also called to trust, even in the midst of Jesus’ preaching of the imminent kingdom, that “heaven and earth will pass away, but [Christ’s] words will not pass away” (Mark 13:31).

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