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The One Year at HIS feet DEVOTIONAL
By Chris Tiegreen
Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.Copyright © 2003 Walk Thru the Bible
All right reserved.
Chapter OneUltimate Authority
"I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End." REVELATION 22:13
JANUARY 1 Revelation 22:13
"If you accept the authority of Jesus in your life, then you accept the authority of His words." -Colin Urquhart
IN WORD There is no greater claim to authority than this. Those who would take the words of Jesus as good suggestions, spiritual advice, recommendations for a moral and happy life, or any other such expression of human wisdom must consider this verse-He is the Alpha and Omega. Those who believe that the Bible does not claim that Jesus is God incarnate must also account for this, for in Revelation 1:8 and 21:6 it is God the Father who says He is the Alpha and Omega. There cannot be two Alphas and Omegas, Firsts and Lasts, Beginnings and Ends-the Father and the Son are one.
When this truth grips us, discipleship takes off. There can be no casual reading of the Gospelswhenwe understand that the words of Jesus are the words not only of a great teacher but of God Himself, the Creator of the universe, the author of all wisdom and the knower of all mysteries. There is nothing truer or more complete in this world-no more accurateprophecy, no better psychology, no sager advice-than the teaching that comes straight from the mouth of the living God; in fact, there is no other opinion worth heeding. His words are the owner's manual for our hearts.
IN DEED Ask yourself these probing questions: Do you hear His words casually, as though they are mere suggestions? Or do you voraciously consume His teaching as the key to life, dependent on it for your very existence? Are His words like a fragrant aroma-pleasing, but not entirely necessary? Or are they like oxygen-a matter of life and death? They were true before the foundation of the world and they will be true for all eternity. Savor them well.
God in the Flesh
"I and the Father are one." JOHN 10:30
JANUARY 2 John 10:22-33
"No founder of any religion has dared to claim for himself one fraction of the assertions made by Jesus Christ." -Henry Heydt
IN WORD "Jesus never claimed to be God." So goes a common mantra among those who reject Christian claims. But it is an argument from ignorance of the Scriptures. Jesus often claimed to be God. True, He never said "I amGod," but He might as well have. This verse is the clearest statement, though cults will water it down and deny that He was claiming deity. "He was only claiming to be one in person, not in essence," they commonly argue. But Jesus' listeners certainly understood what He meant as they picked up stones to throw at Him. "You, a mere man, claim to be God," they charged (v. 33). Jesus often made extravagant claims, and His enemies always knew the implications.
Every time Jesus forgave sins, every time people worshiped Him without rebuke, every time He said "I am," He was claiming to be God. It is unmistakable, if one knows the context of the Gospels. No one familiar with the Hebrew Scriptures would dare to forgive sin unless He was claiming deity. But Jesus did (Matthew 9:2-3; Mark 2:7; Luke 5:21). No one allows people to fall down and worship him, or to cry out, "My Lord and My God," unless he is making divine claims. But Jesus frequently did (Matthew 14:33; 28:9, 17; Luke 24:52; John 9:38; 20:28). No one would dare use the holy name of God for himself as a casual mistake. But Jesus spelled it out (Exodus 3:14; John 8:58). The attempts to stone Him for blasphemy were frequent. His opponents clearly knew what He was saying.
IN DEED The next time someone tells you Jesus never claimed to be God, ignore him. Better yet, correct him. And the next time you read His words casually, as though they were simply advice from a good teacher, remind yourself of this truth. Jesus is not just a good teacher; He is the eternal God, once clothed in human flesh and now inviting Himself into your day. With reverence, let Him in.
Excerpted from The One Year at HIS feet DEVOTIONAL by Chris Tiegreen Copyright © 2003 by Walk Thru the Bible. Excerpted by permission.
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