Sunday, 21 February 2021
Title: Live the Life in the Family
By Elder Tan Seng Kee

Matt 4:7

Last month my devotion was to live the Life (which is PBC’s theme for 2021) in the church with particular reference to Matt 4:4 where Jesus said “Man shall not live by bread alone but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.” I then referred to the 1st temptation of the devil in Matt 4 and specifically pointed out that our response to that temptation is to trust God for the right timing, to depend on God for every situation in our lives and to come into God’s presence with full confidence of our worth and value in Jesus because Jesus has redeemed us and we are God’s children.
To live the life requires me to fully, totally and always obey Jesus. I will now share on to live the life in the family. To live the Christian life in the family is not easy because our family members know us well and they will easily spot hypocrisy if I do not practice what I preach. Jesus, however, calls us to live the life not only in church but also in our family as well as our workplace (which I will share in next month’s devotion).
In the 2nd temptation in Matt 4:5, the devil took Jesus to Jerusalem, which is the city of God, and to the Temple where people gather to worship God and at the highest point of the Temple, we can conclude a close proximity to God. Yet under such circumstances; in the holy city and with closeness to God, the devil nevertheless went on ahead to tempt Jesus and challenge God. Three points to note from this in living the life in the family:

  1. The devil will constantly cause us to doubt each other and instill strife, dissension and bitterness in our family. There are many occasions where instead of kind words we go on a diet of negativities and follow up with a barrage of unkind words. Our position as redeemed children of God does not insulate us from the snares of the devil to disobey God with harsh words and cruel deeds which disrupt our family life. Hence it is necessary that I remind myself each day that I should love my family unconditionally just as Jesus loved me and died for me when I was still a sinner and an enemy of God. Loving unconditionally means I will care and love those in my family in all circumstances and Proverbs 10:12 (b) teaches me that “…love covers all offenses.” It means I should be fervent and intentional in loving my family and I am confident in due course to win over their respect and love as well.
  2. In my family I must learn to listen and speak to each other often. I must talk but I must also listen carefully and intently. If there is a need, I must ask for clarifications. I must not reply in haste and the worst time to reply is when I am angry. Jesus listened carefully to the words of the devil in Matt 4:6 and Jesus knew that the devil had quoted Ps 91:11-12 out of context. The Psalmist rejoices in the assurance of God’s protection only if they make God their refuge and shelter (which the devil conveniently did not mention). Jesus knows the scriptures but he would have also listened carefully so that He can reply aptly to the devil’s misreading of the scriptures. So, let’s listen more.
  3. The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control is already present in my renewed life as a Christian but I must work hard at ‘developing’ them in me. Through reading of the Bible and daily applying its truth into my life, by incessant prayers and worship of our great God as well as fellowship with fellow Christians, I can develop the fruit of the Spirit which is necessary for me to live the life of obedience to Jesus in my family.
    Matt 4:7 reads “Do not test the Lord your God.” Let us not doubt God enabling us to live the life well in our family. Living the Christ-like life in my family is possible because God commands us to take care of our family first (1 Timothy 5:8) and where God commands, He also provides the means for us to do that well.

Prayer:
God, please help me to live the life well in my family. Help me to daily develop the fruit of the Spirit in my life so that others will be blessed and see the goodness of Jesus in my family. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.

每日灵粮
星期日,2021年1月21日
题目:在家庭里活出生命
作者:陈诚基长老
翻译:杨仕涵弟兄

马太福音4:7
耶稣对他说:“经上又记着说:‘不可试探主你的神。’

上个月,我所写的灵修是“在教会里活出生命”(也是我们PBC教会2021年的主题),特别针对马太福音4:4耶稣的回答: “人活着不是单靠食物,乃是靠神口里所出的一切话。” 然后,我提到了马太福音4章中魔鬼的第一次试探,并特别指出,我们对这类试探的反应是相信上帝的时间,在生活中的每一种情况下都依靠上帝,并坦然无惧地来到上帝的同在里,深信我们在基督耶稣里的价值,因为耶稣救赎了我们,我们是上帝的孩子。

要活出生命,就需要我全心、完全和每刻服从耶稣。我今天将分享在家庭中活出生命。在家庭中过个基督徒应有的生活并不容易,因为我们的家庭成员非常了解我们,如果我不实践我所教导的,他们很容易挑出我的虚伪处。然而,耶稣叫我们不仅在教会里活出生命,而且在我们的家庭以及我们的工作场所中也要活出生命(我将在下个月的灵修中分享)。

在马太福音4:5的第二次试探中,魔鬼把耶稣带到了耶路撒冷,就是圣城,再到圣殿,众人聚集敬拜上帝的地方,在圣殿的最高点,我们可以看为与上帝最近距离的位置。然而在这种情况下;与上帝何等亲近的状况,魔鬼仍然试探耶稣,挑战上帝。关于在家庭中活出生命,从这事件有三个关注点:

1、魔鬼会不断使我们家庭成员之间彼此怀疑,并在家庭中引起冲突、分歧和苦难。在很多情况下,我们会以消极和破坏性的言语代替友好和善良的话语。我们作为被上帝救赎的儿女并不会使我们与魔鬼的网罗隔绝,以苛刻和残酷的言语行为违背上帝,破坏我们的家庭生活。因此,我有必要每天提醒自己,我应该无条件地爱我的家人,就如耶稣爱我并在我还做罪人和与上帝为仇之时,为我而死。无条件的爱表示我应在任何情况下关怀和爱护家人,箴言10:12(下)告诉我“…爱能遮掩一切过错。”因此,我应该热心、特意地爱家人,并且我有信心,我将在这过程中也赢得他们的尊重和爱。

2、在我的家庭中,我必须学会经常聆听和沟通。我必须开口,但也必须认真并专心地听。如果有必要,我必须要求澄清。我一定不能匆匆忙忙地回答,生气时更不能。耶稣在马太福音4:6中仔细听魔鬼的话,耶稣知道魔鬼滥用了诗篇91:11-12。诗人以上帝是保护者的保证为乐,这是因为诗人以上帝为避难所和藏身处,这是魔鬼故意没有提到的。耶稣熟悉并明白圣经,但他也仔细听,以便他能适当地回应魔鬼对圣经的误解。所以,我们应该多多地听。

3、圣灵所结的果子:仁爱、喜乐、和平、忍耐、恩慈、良善、信实、温柔、节制,这些在我的基督徒新生命中已经存在,但我仍必须努力地“发展”它们。通过阅读圣经,每天将真理运用到我的生活中,不断的祷告和敬拜我们伟大的上帝以及与众圣徒相同团契,我可以加强我的圣灵果子,这能使我在家庭中活出顺服耶稣的生命。

马太福音4:7写道:“不可试探主你的神。”让我们不要怀疑上帝是否能够使我们在家庭中活出生命。我在家庭之所以能够过个效法基督的生命,是因为上帝命令我们应首先看顾我们的家庭(提摩太前书5:8),上帝若命令,祂一定赐下能力让我们去完成。

祷告: 上帝啊,求祢帮助我在家庭中活出祢喜悦的生命。求祢帮助我每日操练我圣灵的果子,好让别人因我得福,从我家庭的见证看出耶稣的良善。奉主耶稣的名求。阿门。