Saturday, April 14, 2012
May 13, 2012
Scriptures for May 13th: Acts 10:44-48; Psalm 98; 1 John 5:1-6; John 15:9-17; Theme: What does the Love of God Mean for you? Song: Come Thou Font of Every Blessing – UMH 400 Acts: Peter is still at Cornelius’ house, and the Holy Spirit is still pouring out blessings and new understandings for Peter. The book of Acts starts with the Pentecost, when the Holy spirit came upon the believers in Jerusalem. Where here, the gentiles who hear the story and believe start to also speak in tongues. Peter realizes that God shows no favoritism, that salvation is a gift that is offered to all. Peter also realizes that he can’t just walk away now. That he has to baptize this household and treat them like he would any other sister or brother. He knows that God is calling him to get to know other gentiles and to trust that the Holy Spirit is leading them to Christ. John: Jesus continues to talk about the love of God. Loving God means obeying God and God’s son. Jesus says something interesting to the disciples – “I no longer treat you as servants, I treat you as friends.” That is huge! The entire old testament says that a follower of God must be a suffering servant. They must always respect the word of God. And here the son of God is making you an equal. He also reminds us and them that we are here, not because we ourselves want to be, but because God called us. God chose us before we chose God. He chose us to be his friends. We have access to all that God is, if we read the scripture, and do indeed obey God as if we were a servant. In order for us to know we are loved, we have to love. Questions: What does it mean for us that God works in the lives of all people? How does that affect the way we treat people? How do we get back to the faith of Acts – one where there are always people in our lives who need us to tell the story of Jesus? What does it mean to be a friend of God? What does it mean to be a servant of God? If we are chosen by God, and not the other way around, what does it mean to be free? What would the world be like without the love of God?