Saturday 18 Nov 2017
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John 6:49 -50

Your forefathers ate the manna in the desert, yet they died. But here is the bread that comes down from heaven, which a man may eat and not die.

 

The mark of a disciple - What do you have to give?

Act 3:3 — 5 Seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple, he asked to receive alms. And Peter directed his gaze at him, as did John, and said, “Look at us.”And he fixed his attention on them, expecting to receive something from them.

It is easy for us to read this passage and simply move on without being challenged by it, while believing that what was recorded here is something beyond our ability. We would be wrong, this i say because whatever Peter and John did, whatever they gave to the man came from what they had received from Jesus.

There are two points to consider from this passage,
a. The expectation of the crippled man.
b. How his expectation was met.
We do not have to be a Peter or John before we can make an impact with the life which Christ has given. We do not have to be an Apostle before we can lift up a man or woman that is crippled by the burden of life, poverty, trials, despair and hopelessness. We dont need to have all the millions before we can make an impact, rather like Peter and John, all we need is the life which true and genuine encounter with Jesus imparts.

Romans 8:19 For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God.

The truth is just like the crippled man, creation also looks at the so called children of God, doing so with the same eager expectation that they would receive something from them that would touch them. They looked intently with so much longing in their hearts that they might see a ray of light that would shine upon them, they look at them hoping to find strength and support to help them rise up again, they look at them longing for the love of Christ that can help them to overcome the burden of guilt and to confront the inner struggles that has crippled their life while rendering it meaningless and miserable.

 

The question is what do they see and what do we have to give? How do we respond and what can we offer?
Before we raise up our hands to say but i cannot do anything, or even before we rush in with whatever we might believe we have to offer while relying on our strength, resources or opinions, we need to pause for a moment and reflect on Peter's word....

Acts 3:6 But Peter said, “I have no silver and gold, but what I do have I give to you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk!”

 

The truth is we are equipped for this task by Christ howbeit in vsrying degree and so we must be inspired by his life and teachings just as the Apostles were. Also our motivation for responding to the needs of the world around us must be guided by his love as revealed to us by the cross. The love of Christ compels us, said Paul. The one who has truly met with Christ , has the abundance of riches in Christ to draw from, the least and perhaps also the greatest being the love of Christ. We cannot and we must not offer anything in response that does not come from Christ! It will not produce the same result that saw the crippled man lifted back onto his feet.