Devotional Guide, Today’s Reading Friday, July 19, 2019

Theme: SOME PARABLES OF OUR LORD AND SAVIOUR JESUS CHRIST

Text: “How think ye? if a man have an hundred sheep, and one of them be gone astray, doth he not leave the ninety and nine, and goeth into the mountains, and seeketh that which is gone astray?” – Matthew 18:12.

Comment: The chief mission of Jesus Christ was to reconcile us back to God (Colossians 1:19-21)  As a loving Shepherd, Saviour and Mediator, He excellently achieved this task. (See John 17:4,12; 2 Corinthians 5:18-20) As followers of Christ, love should be our collective trademark or identity, in addition to the truth.  This love could be expressed through giving of alms, effective communication or reaching out to one another, etc.  Leaders on their part should manifest this virtue by caring for the flock, even up to the weakest.  They should not be overbearing to the extent of becoming unwilling to forgive erring believers as this may place such leaders in similar category as those who cause stumbling block for others.  The story of the prodigal son reveals God’s love for His children as seen in the joy of the father upon the return of his son.  The father ordinarily could have been contented since his elder brother was still with him but this was not the case. Rather, in an instructive depiction of how God receives the repentant sinner, “the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet: And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry: For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found…” – Luke 15:22-24

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