Daily Devotion

Tuesday, 3 August 2021
Title: Peace and Hope
By: Stephen Wong

Text: Romans 5:1-5

Many of my friends are filled with fear during the current pandemic which has been on-going for the last 17 months. I am like them, quite concerned and personally worried over the effects of the pandemic. I have been thinking of all possibilities to protect my family from the potent dangers outside. Our phone conversations invariably lead us to the topic of covid infections which have escalated in an exponential way that worries all of us. While we continue to take precautions and make attempts to strengthen our immunity from infection, God’s Word is the one reliable source of strength and spiritual immunity that we can take hold of, to confront the tumultuous situation.

In our old previous nature, we were in rebellion towards God (Romans 3:23) and we were thus enemies of God. In Romans 5 however, we are told that we have peace with God today because the enmity between God and man has been resolved by Jesus, who died a sacrificial death on the cross. He received the full wrath of God, for the sins of mankind, at the cross. When you have peace with God, there is no longer any reason not to approach the Almighty God and have fellowship with Him. In Philippians 4:7 Paul again talks about the peace that surpasses all understanding that will guard our hearts and minds when we bring all of our concerns to God. The peace of God helps to dispel the fears and the gloom that confront us this season. And not only are we assured of peace filling our hearts, God promises grace in abundance for us to stand on.

Secondly, we are told to rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. God’s Word provides us with a glimpse into the fact that we will one day depart from this world to be with God. That is true hope expressed in a tangible way i.e., we will die and be resurrected to be with Christ one day whom we shall see face-to-face. Indeed, I ask God to make this hope my great joy too in facing the uncertainties of this time. As God’s people, the Holy Spirit is given to us as a seal and deposit to guarantee our salvation (Eph. 1:3-14) and nothing can take this completed work of God away from us. So, we draw comfort in Him that in life, disease or death, we have a glorious future.

Finally, we are to persevere in these trying times. Perseverance is the outcome of being patient with the suffering we are experiencing now. In my counselling learnings, one of the approaches towards dealing with various challenges is not to fight bodily or mental challenges head-on with anger, but to understand your pains and feelings better by being “mindful.” It is hard to persevere when you are alone in this world regardless of the techniques that we use. But with the presence of God in our lives, we can persevere and be victorious in the face of trials. Paul tells us that suffering produces perseverance, perseverance builds our character and character gives hope for the future. And we persevere by talking to God concerning our fears and needs, whatever they might be. And God will grant His help and relief to our hearts and minds.

My brethren, are you suffering today? Are you despairing over the escalating plague and social-economic turmoil in the country? Speak to God and the church. There is peace, grace, hope and joy from God, awaiting to be experienced in your life. Do not despair but trust in the Lord with all your heart. Do not lean on your own understanding to resolve difficult challenges in your life, but in all situations acknowledge the Lord Jesus is Lord over your sufferings; and the pathway to health, joy and glory shall be made clear to you.

Prayer

Dear Lord Jesus, our wonderful Saviour, we thank you for Your word of encouragement to us that in the worst of circumstances, there is hope and opportunity for all of us because we have placed our trust in You. We pray for Your help and encouragement to enable us to persevere amidst much emotional, financial and physical strain so that we will be victorious till the very end. We do pray for an end to this pandemic as Your purposes are being fulfilled daily in our community and the nation. Protect us from harm. Enable us to be strong and healthy throughout this period of the pandemic. We pray Your will be done in Malaysia. In the precious name of our Lord and Saviour, we pray. Amen.

班底浸信教会
每日灵粮
星期二, 2021年8月3日
标题:平安和盼望
作者:黄德根弟兄
翻译:陈晓佩姐妹

我的许多朋友对目前已经持续了17月的大流行病充满着恐惧。我也和他们一样,对大流行病所带来的影响非常关切和忧虑。我一直在想各种可能的办法以保护我家人免受外界潜在危险的伤害。我们的电话交谈总是将我们引向新冠病毒感染的话题,新冠感染已经以指数方式攀升,让我们所有人都感到担忧。在我们继续采取预防措施并努力增强我们对感染的免疫力的同时,上帝的话语是我们能够把握的力量和灵性免疫力的一个可靠来源,以应对动乱的局势。

在我们过去的本性中,我们背叛了上帝(罗马书3:23),因此我们是上帝的敌人。然而,在罗马书第5章,我们被告知今天我们能与上帝和好,因为上帝与人之间的冤仇已经被耶稣在十字架上牺牲而解决了。因着人类的罪孽,祂在十字架上承受了上帝全部的震怒。当我们与上帝和好了,就没有任何理由不亲近全能上帝,与祂相交。在腓立比书4:7,保罗再次谈到,当我们把所有的忧虑交托上帝时,祂所赐超过人能了解的平安,必保守我们的心思意念。上帝的平安帮助我们驱散这个时节所面临的恐惧和阴郁。我们不仅有确凿的平安充满我们的心,上帝也应许给我们丰盛的恩典,让我们站立得住。

其次,圣经告诉我们要因盼望上帝的荣耀而喜乐。上帝的话语让我们瞥见一个事实,我们终有一天会离开这个世界,与上帝同在。这是一种以确实的方式去表达真正的盼望,即有一天我们将会死后复活,与基督同在,我们将与基督面对面地相见。事实上,在面对这个时候的不确定性,我祈求上帝让这盼望成为我最大的喜乐。作为上帝的子民,我们被赐予圣灵作为我们得救的印记和凭据(以弗所书1:3-14),没有什么可以从我们夺走上帝所完成的工作。因此,我们从祂得到安慰,无论生、病或死,我们都有一个荣耀的未来。

最后,我们要在这些艰难的时刻坚定不移。毅力是我们经历痛苦时保持忍耐的结果。在我的辅导学习中,应对各种挑战的方法之一不是用愤怒来正面对抗身体或精神上的挑战,而是通过 “正念” 来更好地理解您的痛苦和感受。无论我们使用什么方法,当您独自一人生活在这个世界时,是很难坚定下去的。但只要我们的生命有上帝的同在,我们就能在试炼中坚忍不拔且得胜。保罗告诉我们,患难产生毅力,毅力塑造我们的品格,品格给我们带来未来的盼望。我们坚持不懈地与告诉上帝我们的恐惧和需要,无论它们是什么。上帝将赐予我们心灵的帮助和宽慰。

我的弟兄们,您今天在受苦吗?您是否对国家面临不断飙升的瘟疫和社会经济动荡而感到绝望?向上帝和教会说吧。您会有从上帝而来的平安、恩典、盼望和喜乐,等待着您在生活中去体验。不要绝望,要全心全意地信靠上帝。不要依靠自己的理解去解决您生活中的困难挑战,但在任何情况下都要承认主耶稣是您患难的主;那通往健康、喜乐和荣耀的道路将会清晰地向您显明。

祷告亲爱的主耶稣,我们奇妙的救主,我们感谢祢对我们鼓励的话语,在最糟糕的情况下,我们所有人都有盼望和机会,因为我们已经信靠祢。我们祈求祢的帮助和激励,让我们能够在情感、经济和身体的劳损下坚持下去,使我们至终得胜。当祢的心意天天在我们的社区和国家实现时,我们祈求这场大流行病的结束。求祢保护我们免受伤害;使我们能够在大流行病期间保持强壮和健康。我们祈求祢的旨意成就在马来西亚。奉我们主宰和救主宝贵的名,我们祈祷。阿们。


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