Insignificant or Precious?

By , April 24, 2014

“I have revealed you to those whom you gave me out of the world.
They were yours;
you gave them to me and they have obeyed your word.”
John 17:6 (NIV)

Gordon Rumford Ministries | Daily Devotional | Insignificant or Precious?

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Currently there is a scrap piece of paper held on the door of our refrigerator with a small magnet. If anyone found it on the street they would pick it up and deposit in in a garbage bin along the side of the road.

However, that scrap of paper is exceptionally precious to me and my wife. What is garbage to you is priceless to us. You see, one of our grandchildren took the time to paint that scrap of paper for Gramma and Grampa.

Do you see the difference in how you and we look at that piece of paper? What makes the painting precious to us is who made it, why they made it and why they gave it to us.

The person who gave us that painting that looks chaotic and senseless is dearly loved by us and enormously important to us. Because that grandchild gave us that work of art we value it very much.

The people of God are a gift from God the Father to His Son. Jesus mentions us as being given to Him by the Father several times in John 17. So from one perspective we are precious to Jesus because of Who gave us to Him.

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Our True Home

By , April 23, 2014

“But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law muttered,
‘This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.’”
Luke 15:2 (NIV)

Gordon Rumford Ministries | Daily Devotional | Our True Home

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Meister Eckhart, a wise saint of another age, once said, “God is home it is we who have gone out for a walk.”

It seems to me that humanity is suffering from a kind of amnesia. We do not know our true identity. Some people simply think of themselves as “trousered apes” as C.S. Lewis so aptly put it in his book, The Abolition of Man.

Another person suggested that we are “economic animals”. We are born, we learn how to make money, we make money, we die, and cease to exist.

Such tragic views of what we are make life cheap, pointless, and depressing. The theory of biological evolution seems to rob people of any sense of personal worth or significance. That theory suggests we are sophisticated animals and nothing more.

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Remember And Consider This

By , April 22, 2014

“But now, this is what the Lord says—he who created you, Jacob,
he who formed you, Israel: ‘Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
I have summoned you by name; you are mine.’”
Isaiah 43:1 NIV

Gordon Rumford Ministries | Daily Devotional | Remember And Consider ThisView in your web browser here
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“‘When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.’” Isaiah 43:2 NIV

Last week I had my second ambulance trip to hospital in less than a year for what now appears to be the same nasty bacterial infection in my right leg, Streptococcus A Septicaemia. The first occurrence now seems to have been the worst. However any occurrence of “fire” is one too many.

The Lord has hardwired people for self defence. We strive for our preservation with all we possess. So avoiding anything unpleasant is natural and necessary. There is nothing cowardly in wanting an easy ride through life. In fact it is  considered the evidence of a diseased mind to welcome or enjoy suffering of any sort.

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The Universal Saviour

By , April 21, 2014

“Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying:
‘Sovereign Lord, as you have promised,
you may now dismiss your servant in peace.’”
Luke 2:28-29 (NIV)

Gordon Rumford Ministries | Daily Devotional | The Universal SaviourView a large print PDF version here
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“‘For my eyes have seen your salvation, 

which you have prepared in the sight of all nations: 

a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and the glory of your people Israel.’”
Luke 2:30-32 (NIV)

When God chose His people, His purpose was to use them to be a blessing to all nations of the earth (Genesis 12:3; 28:14).

Somehow over the centuries many of the Jewish people lost their sense of calling to bless all nations. They were proud of their descent from Abraham (John 8:41).

A morning prayer of devout Jewish men in Jesus’ time included the words “…I thank Thee I was not born a Gentile dog…”

The wonderful Jewish man Simeon really got it right as he held the baby Jesus in the temple a few days after His birth and said what he did. Simeon knew that the promised Messiah that would be born into a Jewish family was to be shared with the entire world.

The Gospel Christians preach and teach needs to include the emphasis of this elderly man in the temple that day. Truly Jesus is the universal Saviour.

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When Jesus Comes

By , April 20, 2014

“Now he had to go through Samaria.”
John 4:4 (NIV)

Gordon Rumford Ministries | Daily Devotional | When Jesus ComesYou can view a PDF version here
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Yesterday I explained in the devotional that someone in Judea, the southern province of the nation of Israel, could travel through Samaria on a direct route to the northern province of Galilee. I also explained why Jews of the time would avoid doing that and take a longer route to arrive at their destination.

Yet John uses the expression that Jesus “had to” travel that despised route to go back to His home area. So there was something of a divine compulsion to the journey Jesus took. I believe that Jesus had determined He must see that particular woman and take her from the kingdom of darkness into the Kingdom of God.

In other words, because God had ordained that this specific woman was to be converted (Ephesians 1:3-5, 11), Jesus “must” have an interview with her. This is how we explain the difference between what is physically possible for Jesus to do and what He must do to complete His work.

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