ESOCS Devotional 9 April 2023
MEMORY VERSE: “And Jesus answered and said to them, “Do you suppose that these Galileans were worse Sinners than all other Galileans, because they suffered such things?” I tell you, no; but unless you repent you will all likewise perish. “Or those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them, do you think that they were worse sinners than all other men who dwelt in Jerusalem?” I tell you, no; but unless you repent you will all likewise perish.” Luke 13:2-5
TEXT: LUKE 13:1 – 17
Now there were some present at that time who told Jesus about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mixed with their sacrifices. 2 Jesus answered, “Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans because they suffered this way? 3 I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish. 4 Or those eighteen who died when the tower in Siloam fell on them—do you think they were more guilty than all the others living in Jerusalem? 5 I tell you, no! But unless you repent,you too will all perish.”
6 Then he told this parable: “A man had a fig tree growing in his vineyard, and he went to look for fruit on it but did not find any.7 So he said to the man who took care of the vineyard, ‘For three years now I’ve been coming to look for fruit on this fig tree and haven’t found any. Cut it down! Why should it use up the soil?’
8 “‘Sir,’ the man replied, ‘leave it alone for one more year, and I’ll dig around it and fertilize it. 9 If it bears fruit next year, fine! If not, then cut it down.’”
10 On a Sabbath Jesus was teaching in one of the synagogues,11 and a woman was there who had been crippled by a spirit for eighteen years. She was bent over and could not straighten up at all. 12 When Jesus saw her, he called her forward and said to her, “Woman, you are set free from your infirmity.” 13 Then he put his hands on her, and immediately she straightened up and praised God.
14 Indignant because Jesus had healed on the Sabbath, the synagogue leader said to the people, “There are six days for work.So come and be healed on those days, not on the Sabbath.”
15 The Lord answered him, “You hypocrites! Doesn’t each of you on the Sabbath untie your ox or donkey from the stall and lead it out to give it water? 16 Then should not this woman, a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has kept bound for eighteen long years, be set free on the Sabbath day from what bound her?”
Herod had killed some Galileans. At Siloam, a tower had fallen and killed eighteen persons and in the Temple on a Sabbath day was a woman who was bent over and could not raise herself for eighteen years because of demonic affliction. Every day we hear news of sad events; the media daily flows with news of wars, bombings, kidnappings, arm robbery, rape, and all manner of disastrous events. In these events, several lives are lost, people are maimed and properties worth millions of dollars are lost. Life is not always smooth and easy. It is filled with ups and downs. It is the reality of our world. Sometimes people feel fortunate even with a sense of vindication that they are spared of these unfortunate events. Those that are unfortunate to be victims of sad events sometimes are regarded as reaping the reward of some evil act. Sometimes too, the people affected in a disastrous event do not see why of all people it should be them and often ask, “Why me?”
Christ, in reacting to the report of the killed Galileans and those on whom a wall fell on at Siloam, made it clear that that those who suffer are not necessarily more sinful than others neither are those who are spared more righteous. In life, disaster falls on one and another is spared, one succeeds in his endeavor and another fails in his. But Jesus points us to a direction where we can dwell in safety and in assurance. It is the direction of repentance. For in forsaking sin and reconciling with the Lord, man comes into a relationship with God where he is protected and his life and future is guaranteed. God keeps him from evil and blesses the works of his hand.
The summary of Jesus’ answer is that there is only one place where you can have assurance for life and be free from the chance game of earthly survival. It is an invitation for the sinner, for the wounded, the oppressed and all who are battered by the world to come to Him. Not just them but also for all those who have been spared. In Christ, there is an assurance. God will guide your ways and you will live in security.
- Why do you think disastrous events happen in the life of man?
- What is the role of sin in all these?
- Heavenly Father, I pray that you grant me divine protection. Keep me safe from evil and from all that threaten the life of man. Help me to keep away from sin and grant me the grace to remain solidly in you. Amen
FURTHER READING: Exodus 12:1-14; 4: 27-end; Matthew 28:1-15; Luke 24:13- 25
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ESOCS Devotional 9 April 2023