ODJ: An Important Message

December 24, 2018 

READ: Luke 24:13-53 

It was also written that this message would be proclaimed . . . “There is forgiveness of sins for all who repent” (v.47).

How are you?” I asked the woman who was checking out my shopping at the supermarket. She mumbled something. “One of those days, huh?” I said. “I’m just not feeling well,” she responded. We talked for a few minutes while she finished with my order. As I paid, I felt God telling me to do something, or at least to say something. I didn’t. And I argued with myself the whole way back to my car and on the way home about what I could have said or done to encourage her. I prayed for her, but I wonder what kind of impact it could have had if I at least told her I was praying.

The worst part? It was Sunday, and I had just got out of church where we heard a sermon on Luke 24. Verses 36-49 give the account of Jesus’ first appearance to His disciples after the resurrection. When He suddenly stood among them, they were startled, “thinking they were seeing a ghost” (v.37). But Jesus showed them His scarred hands and feet and encouraged them to touch Him to know He was real (vv.39-40). He then helped them understand what the Scriptures said about His death (v.45). The disciples, witnesses to this event, were to go out to proclaim the message “to all the nations” (vv.47-48).

We haven’t seen Jesus’ physical resurrected body as the disciples did, but we’re still called to spread the message we know is true, “There is forgiveness of sins for all who repent” (v.47; see Matthew 28:18-20). As a believer in Him, I’m called to be a light to others. There’s good news to be shared! Let’s ask the Holy Spirit for boldness to spread the news! (Acts 4:29-31).

—Julie Schwab

365-day plan: 2 Peter 1:2-21

Read Acts 13:44-49,52. Notice what Paul and Barnabas did when the Jews rejected their message. What happened when the message was shared with the Gentiles? 
Next time you’re out, look for ways to be a light to others. Even if you don’t have an opportunity to share the gospel, how else can you be an encouragement?