September 10, 2018
Victory Through the Resurrection of Jesus (Feast of Trumpets/Fast Begins)
1. Center Down
Before you begin today’s spiritual excursion, please take a few moments to breathe! Take three slow, deep breaths, expanding from your abdomen; try not to raise your shoulders. As you inhale, whisper, “The Risen Christ…” As you exhale whisper, “is my life.”
2. Slowly read aloud the following Scriptures: (Feel free to pause at any time during your reading to reflect on, thank, praise, or acknowledge God’s stirring in your thoughts and emotions.)
Jesus said to [Martha], “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in Me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?” She said to Him, “Yes, Lord; I believe that You are the Christ, the Son of God, who is coming into the world.” (John 11:25-27, ESV)
Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving. See to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ. For in Him the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily, and you have been filled in Him, who is the head of all rule and authority. In Him also you were circumcised with a circumcision made without hands, by putting off the body of the flesh, by the circumcision of Christ, having been buried with Him in baptism, in which you were also raised with Him through faith in the powerful working of God, who raised Him from the dead. And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with Him, having forgiven us all our trespasses, by canceling the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands. This He set aside, nailing it to the cross. He disarmed the rulers and authorities and put them to open shame, by triumphing over them in Him. (Colossians 2:6-15, ESV)
For further reading: Luke 24 (see video: http://tiny.cc/LukeRez )
3. Concepts to Consider:
The Apostle Paul says something shocking in his first letter to the Corinthian church. He says, “But if there is no resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised. And if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain and your faith is in vain. We are even found to be misrepresenting God, because we testified about God that He raised Christ, whom He did not raise if it is true that the dead are not raised. For if the dead are not raised, not even Christ has been raised. And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins” (1 Corinthians 15:13-17). Basically, without the bodily resurrection of Jesus, then His life, death and burial make Him no different than any other dead “messiah” that has passed through history. The resurrection is the linchpin of our Salvation Story. It is the true victory over Death and the grave. The spiritual death that was brought to humanity in their disobedience has been turned around, and life has been restored to the children of Adam and Eve in Christ Jesus!
His physical resurrection is also the down payment on our promised resurrection. Jesus passed through death and the grave and came out the other side as an “upgraded” human. He is, as the writer of Hebrews says, “…the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God” (Hebrews 1:2). As we continue to celebrate the Feast of Trumpets, we look forward to the day when we, and those we love who have died in the Lord, are resurrected, just like Jesus, in the New Creation.
4. Reflection Question: (You are encouraged to write, draw, or respond however the Lord leads to the following inquiries. To share your musings in a public forum where others can dialog and process with you, please go to http://tiny.cc/victoryn30 ).
1. Why is the resurrection of Jesus so important for our salvation?
5. Prayer for Today:
Holy Father, we thank You for giving us a future and a hope in You! Thank You for redeeming our souls through the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus! Thank You for new beginnings and Your redemptive power at work in us through the Holy Spirit. Together, as the Body of Christ, we rejoice in the celebration of the Feast of Trumpets. Our hearts are confident in You, Father. No wonder we can sing Your praises! We will thank You, Lord, among all the people. We will sing Your praises among the nations, for Your unfailing love is as high as the heavens. Your faithfulness reaches to the clouds.
Majestic Father, we are grateful to enter into this season with humility. We understand that only those whose hands and hearts are pure, who do not worship idols, and who are not false, can stand in Your holy presence. We thank You for making us holy, blameless, and above reproach through Jesus Christ. It is through Him that our hearts are made pure, and our hands are made clean. We cannot boast or take any credit, Jesus, You are the source of our redemption. We will use this time during this season to examine ourselves. As part of the Feast of Trumpets, You have directed us to reconcile with persons who may have wronged us during the past year. We commit to mending, by Your grace, our broken relationships. Father, You have begun a good work in us, and we are confident that You will complete it until the Day of Jesus Christ.
As I review the past year (Sept. 2017 – Sept. 2018), I am thankful for:
Father, this year I commit to reconcile with (List the names of those who may have wronged you):
Holy Spirit, lead those in the Body of Christ who still do not celebrate the feasts into a deeper revelation of the blessing in obeying the Father’s commandments. While we observe the Feast of Trumpets, alert us to anything that may be keeping us from experiencing true intimacy with You. Teach us to search for the Lord and for His strength, to continually seek Him. Give us a strong conviction about the kind of example we are setting for our children as we begin the new year.
Our Father, forgive us for our past sins. Forgive us for not fully walking in the victory afforded to us in the power of Jesus’ resurrected life. Please forgive the Body of Christ for rejecting Your Feasts during the early centuries of the Christian faith. Forgive us for not acknowledging You in all our ways and for leaning to our own understanding. Lord, forgive me for (list any sins that You have committed). Holy Spirit, remind us all of those we need to forgive and help us to be quick to forgive. We will not take past offenses into the new year. As for me, Holy Spirit, bring to my remembrance those I need to forgive. (Take a moment and ask the Holy Spirit to show you names or faces of people that you may need to forgive. As He shows you, say aloud, “I forgive name of person (s).” Now, trust the Lord to heal any wounds in your soul caused by unforgiveness.)
Holy Spirit, help us all not to yield to temptation but deliver us from the evil one.
Sovereign Lord, You are great and most worthy of praise! You are to be feared above all gods. The gods of other nations are mere idols, but You made the heavens. Honor and majesty surround You. Strength and joy fill Your dwelling. Let the whole world fear You and let everyone stand in awe of You. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
Optional Time of Centering/Soaking:
If possible, take some time, perhaps 5 to 15 minutes, to get into a comfortable position and simply allow the Lord to minister to you at a deep level (Psalm 42:7). Turn off or put down all distractions. Close your eyes. Hold in your thoughts a meaningful word, phrase, or image from the Scripture passages you read today. Release all other thoughts and concerns into the Presence of the Lord. If your thoughts wander, that’s okay, just gently return to your Scriptural word, phrase, or image. You may want to set a timer.
© Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996, 2004. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved. ©2017 Caldwell Ministries, Inc. All rights reserved — No reproduction of the material is permitted without the expressed permission of CMI.