“Morning by morning, O Lord, you hear my voice”

Psalm 5:3

The World Mission of Jesus

(Please read Luke 4:16-21)

May 14

Soon after his baptism and the temptations in the wilderness, Jesus returned to his hometown, Nazareth, and visited the synagogue there. At that time, devout people met on the Sabbath day, not, as in a temple, for ceremonial services, but to read, expound and apply the Old Testament scriptures, and to pray and praise. This is the only recorded time when Jesus read in a synagogue. Then he sat down and began to speak, seeming to make the words of Isaiah (a portion of Isaiah 61) his own.

Thus Jesus declared that he was anointed to “preach the good news to the poor” (NIV). Since God is not willing that anyone should perish (2 Peter 3:9), Jesus must have referred to a different kind of poverty here – those who feel their spiritual destitution and are humble and lowly even though they may be rich in the economic sense.

The Lord added that he was to heal the brokenhearted. Because Christ is the hope of believers, he is their healer in times of calamity and sadness. Jesus was also to “proclaim freedom for the prisoners” – that is, deliverance from the captivity of sin and death. And he would provide sight for people afflicted with spiritual blindness, “release the oppressed” and proclaim “the favorable year of the Lord.”

That favorable year had come, when the Messiah began preaching universal liberty from the bondage of sin. That wonderful freedom is still available to all, and as believers in Christ, let’s look for opportunities this day to talk about it with someone who needs to find a Savior.

 

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