Our Daily Bread 2nd June 2020 Devotional – Chosen to Forgive
TODAY’S TOPIC: CHOSEN TO FORGIVE
Bible in a Year: 2 Chronicles 17–18; John 13:1–20
Key Verse: Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing. – Luke 23:34
Today’s Scripture: Luke 1:76–79 (NIV)
76 And you, my child, will be called a prophet of the Most High;
for you will go on before the Lord to prepare the way for him,
77 to give his people the knowledge of salvation
through the forgiveness of their sins,
78 because of the tender mercy of our God,
by which the rising sun will come to us from heaven
79 to shine on those living in darkness
and in the shadow of death,
to guide our feet into the path of peace.”
Insight: Our Daily Bread 2nd June 2020 Devotional
Today’s passage records what Zechariah, John the Baptist’s father, said about his infant son and his relationship to the coming of the Messiah. John—who was a relative of Jesus (see Luke 1:36) and whose birth was also announced by an angel (vv. 5–25)—was to “go on before the Lord to prepare the way for him” (v. 76).
John accepted this role and identity and gave voice to it himself. In the gospel of John (written by John the apostle, not John the Baptist), he announces his identity and role: “I am the voice of one calling in the wilderness, ‘Make straight the way for the Lord’” (John 1:23). This quote is from the prophet Isaiah who spoke a message of comfort to the people of Israel (see Isaiah 40:1–3).
Message: Our Daily Bread 2nd June 2020 Devotional
As a middle-schooler, Patrick Ireland first sensed God had chosen him for something. But what? Later as a survivor of the horrific Columbine (Colorado) High School massacre where thirteen were killed and twenty-four wounded, including Patrick, he began to understand an answer.
Through his long recovery, Patrick learned that clinging to bitterness causes further wounding. God showed Patrick that the key to forgiveness is to stop focusing on what others have done to us and to focus on what Jesus has done for us. Christ’s words on the cross toward His tormenters, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing” (Luke 23:34), fulfilled Zechariah the priest’s prophecy of Jesus’ forgiveness (1:77). Additionally, His example revealed a purpose for Patrick, and twenty years after the tragedy, Patrick shared, “Maybe I was chosen to forgive.”
While most of us will not endure an unimaginable calamity such as the one committed at Columbine, each of us has been wronged in some way. A spouse betrays. A child rebels. An employer abuses. How do we move forward? Maybe we look to the example of our Savior.
In the face of rejection and cruelty, He forgave. It is through Jesus’ forgiveness of our sins that we, ourselves, find salvation, which includes the ability to forgive others. And like Patrick, we can choose to let go of our bitterness to open our hearts to forgiveness. By: Elisa Morgan
Reflect: Is your heart open to forgive? How might you experience more of the salvation Jesus died to provide by choosing to move toward forgiving someone who has wronged you?
Today’s Prayer: Dear Father, show me who I’m chosen to forgive today, and give me the strength to offer the forgiveness You died to provide.
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