Not to Worry

Jesus knows the weakness of our faith and how easily we succumb to worry. He also loves us and does not want to see our joy and fruitfulness for His kingdom choked by earthly fear and anxiety. So He repeatedly lifts our eyes to our mighty Father, in whom alone forgiveness, peace, and security are found. Through the grace of the Savior who always sought God’s kingdom, we may replace fear with faith, trembling with trust, and paralysis with obedience.

The Lord speaks to us directly through his Word, and we are called to listen to it and obey it. But he also tests us through his works, and, like Rehoboam, we are often tempted to respond in the wrong way to our circumstances. We can learn from his example, but our ultimate hope is that the long-awaited descendant of Rehoboam always responded in the right way to both the works and Word of his Father, and his grace and power will enable us to do so as well.

Longest-Term Investing

Every good financial plan has short, medium, and long-term goals, but they are all worthless apart from consideration of the longest-term of all, eternity! Jesus said that even the savviest investor is a fool if he is not rich toward God through the grace of the Savior who became poor so that we might become rich in Him. Jesus paid for our lives on the cross and shows us how to invest them for His eternal glory.

Bad Fear and Good Fear

God created us to fear Him above all else. He designed us to worship and adore Him in awe, humility, and reverence. But sin has warped our fear such that we now fear nearly everything except God. How can our bad fear be overcome, and our good fear restored? Only through the Savior who did not fear death but gave His life for us so that we might live unflinchingly for Him.

No one likes being corrected, especially in front of a crowd. But what if correction is the only thing standing between us and destruction? Jesus’ rebuke of the Pharisees was not only a stalwart stand against hypocrisy, but a loving attempt at reclamation. The truth of God’s Word often hurts, but it is also the only way to healing through repentance and faith in Jesus Christ.

As we continue through a rough transition between two polarizing and flawed presidents, we read of Solomon, who was quite flawed himself, yet is presented in Chronicles in a seamless transition between two ideal and highly popular kings who led Israel through the golden age of its history. Above all his other qualities and accomplishments, Solomon is shown to be a model ruler because of his attention to the temple, where he leads the people in sacrificing and praying to the LORD, foreshadowing the truly perfect king and high priest to come.

Supreme Savior

Jesus faced much opposition and disbelief on His way to the cross, but continually proclaimed His identity as the supreme Savior. No one could rival His power, wisdom, or word, and He remains the sure hope of all who trust in Him today. By grace, we may worship and reflect the One who set us free through His supreme work on the cross.

God knows you intimately and loves you infinitely. But how well do others know you? What is your reputation like? As we look at our passage today we will see the apostle Paul writing a letter to the church in Ephesus praising God for their faith and love in the name of Jesus.

A Fresh Start

January is famous for New Year’s resolutions, but only the gospel can affect true and lasting change. Manasseh was the most wicked king in Israel’s history, but not even he was beyond the merciful grace of God through the gifts of repentance and faith. Our cases may not seem as extreme, but every believer needs gospel renewal every day. We need to humble ourselves before the ultimate King who died and rose for us, that we might grow in His likeness and live for His glory.

Supreme over Everything!

After opening his letter with prayer for the Colossians and a concise theological exposition of the Father’s redemptive work in Christ, the apostle Paul turns to doxology. His praise of Christ and his work of redemption and reconciliation takes the form of a hymn which exalts Christ’s supremacy over the creative and redemptive aspects of the universe. The apostle’s poetic exaltation of Christ gives us important insights into who Jesus is and what he is doing.

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