Friday, January 12, 2007

The Mission of Paul

"The Lord replied, 'Go, for this is my chosen instrument to bring my name before gentiles and kings and before the people of Israel; I myself will show him how much he will suffer for my name." (Acts 9: 15)

The mission of Paul:

  • Bring the name of Jesus before 'gentiles and kings'
  • Bring the name of Jesus before the people of Israel
  • Suffer much for the name of Jesus

Did people fulfill this commission? Read the Acts of the Apostles. Read the letters he wrote to the churches.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

The Witness

"The God of our ancestors has chosen you to know his will, to see the upright One and hear his own voice speaking, because you are to be his witness before all humanity, testifying to what you have seen and heard." (Acts 22: 14)

Ananias communicates to Paul his vocation. Christ had promised Paul: "Get up and go into Damascus, and there you will be told what you have been appointed to do" (Acts 22:10)

  • Paul was chosen to know God's will.
  • Paul was chosen to be a witness to Jesus before all humanity.
  • Paul was chosen to testify to what he saw and heard.

He carried out his life's work admirably through preaching, teaching and writing.

What is my mission? I learn and I teach. Has God really chosen me to be a friend and companion of Jesus? If this is so, God will confirm his call at the appropriate time. Can I appropriate Acts 22: 14? Lord Jesus, I am completely yours. Lead me, guide me and use me. Amen.

"I will open before you a door that no man can shut." (Revelation 3: 8)

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

"What am I to do, Lord?"

“I said, ‘What am I to do, Lord?’ The Lord answered, ‘Get up and go into Damascus, and there you will be told what you have been appointed to do.” (Acts 22: 10)

What am I to do Lord? Get up and go to Aston, and there you will be told what you have been appointed to do.”

As I wait for the Lord’s word to be fulfilled in my life, I need patience. Surely, I will be told what I have been appointed to do at the right time. Thank you Jesus. I think of the Chinese proverb: “When the student is ready, the teacher appears. When the teacher is ready, the student appears.”

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Companions of Jesus

"He now went up onto the mountain and summoned those he wanted. So they came to him and he appointed twelve; they were to be his companions and to be sent out to proclaim the message, with power to drive out devils." (Mark 3: 15)

Jesus Christ chose those he wanted. The choice was not based on status, wealth or education. It appears that he chose them in direct contradiction to human "wisdom."

  • Those chosen were to be companions of Jesus.
  • They were appointed to proclaim the message.
  • They had power to deal with the devils.

These are promises of the New Testament which are superior to anything found in the Old Testament.

Monday, January 08, 2007

Better Promises

"As it is, he has been given a ministry as far superior as is the covenant of which he is the mediator, which is founded on better promises." (Hebrews 8:6)

The above scripture refers to the ministry of Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is priest, king and prophet. Priest, king and prophet describe who he is according to scripture. But what he does for our salvation is his ministry. These are according to scripture: teaching, feeding and healing. In his teaching ministry, he acts as both priest and prophet. As a priest, he is our supreme high priest and sole mediator before the Father.

We are told in Hebrews 8:6 that Christ's mediation is founded on better promises. Which promises? I think of this:

"Take this, all of you, and eat it:

this is my body which will be given up for you.

Take this, all of you, and drink from it:

this is the cup of my blood,

the blood of the new and everlasting covenant.

It will be shed for you and for all

so that sins may be forgiven.

Do this in memory of me."

This promise is the summit of our faith. Christ Jesus gives us himself as our food and drink. What can be more sublime! The foolishness of God is greater than all the wisdom of man, scripture teaches. So is the weakness of God greater than all human strength and power. In the gift of the Eucharist, the "better promise", we see the foolishness and weakness of God made so for our salvation.