Evangelical Lutheran Diocese of North America

Saturday after the Fifth Sunday after Trinity Sunday

Posted on July 6, 2024 by Pastor Dulas under Devotions
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Scripture: St. Luke 9:18-26 (NKJV)
9:18 And it happened, as He was alone praying, that His disciples joined Him, and He asked them, saying, “Who do the crowds say that I am?”
19 So they answered and said, “John the Baptist, but some say Elijah; and others say that one of the old prophets has risen again.”
20 He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?”
Peter answered and said, “The Christ of God.”
21 And He strictly warned and commanded them to tell this to no one, 22 saying, “The Son of Man must suffer many things, and be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised the third day.”
23 Then He said to them all, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me. 24 For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will save it. 25 For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and is himself destroyed or lost? 26 For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words, of him the Son of Man will be ashamed when He comes in His own glory, and in His Father’s, and of the holy angels.
There are two things that make up the Christian experience: faith and life. First, there is faith concerning who Christ is. Second, there is a life of following after Christ. This pattern is seen in our reading today. Peter confesses in faith that Jesus is “the Christ of God,” and then he is instructed in the life which accompanies this faith: “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me.”
Our lives following Christ are not glamorous. Often they are accompanied by persecution. Just as the Jewish leaders rejected Jesus and persecuted Him, so we can expect leaders in this world to reject and persecute us. But the Christian life is also not one of doom and gloom. We have the hope of eternal life! While in this world we suffer for confessing Christ, in the world to come we will be exalted for having confessed Him. “Therefore whoever confesses Me before men, him I will also confess before My Father who is in heaven,” (Matt. 10:32). When the Son of Man comes in His glory, we will be glorified with Him—not on account of anything we have done, but because of Christ and what He has done for us. All who are baptized into this faith will receive eternal life with Christ in heaven.
Collect: O God, Who hast prepared for them that love Thee such good things as pass man’s understanding: Pour into our hearts such love toward Thee, that we, loving Thee above all things, may obtain Thy promises, which exceed all that we can desire; through Jesus Christ, Thy Son, our Lord, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee and the Holy Ghost, ever One God, world without end. Amen.
Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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