The need for guides

20.10.2019

 

And he said, “How can I, unless someone guides me?” And he asked Philip to come up and sit with him.
(Acts 8:31 NKJV)

The question of the eunuch, "great authority under Candace the queen of the Ethiopians, who had charge of all her treasury" to Philip underlines a permanent necessity, that of the guides, people characterized by a deep feeling of love that take care of the flock of the Lord. Men and women who through their lives demonstrate the validity of the message of Jesus, who are concerned with the apostle to not give false references: "Therefore I run thus: not with uncertainty. Thus I fight: not as one who beats the air. But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified" (1 Corinthians 9:26-27 NKJV). We are faced with a constant commitment, a discipline that daily bends us into the form of Christ, to be "His image". The attitude of the eunuch deserves more in-depth study, as he demands the help of Philip and lets him teach himself.

Unfortunately we continue to see servants who undress their aprons and wear regal robes, leaving aside the instructions of the Master and folding Scripture to their liking. Since the first group of disciples a destructive pride has crept in and a form of almost compulsive self-centeredness, think of the sons of Zebedee and the disciples who quarrel at the table of the Lord, transforming the humble service into an upward competition, a climb to the greater visibility and the more consistent number of "followers" (who are not faithful believers!), sometimes changing the question of salvation into a miserable and shabby religious business. And this is how we at world level are almost addicted to internal power struggles and divisions, fueled and / or amplified by financial and sexual scandals of some leader (no reference to specific facts and/or people).

Scrolling the story backwards, George Whitefield did well to pray in the eighteenth century: "O Lord Jesus, may your Spirit eradicate from our hearts this inclination to concentrate on self-love and to stubbornly stagnate over our will". Just a little honesty is enough to admit how this inclination is in everyone, and that is why we must discipline ourselves. Without love it will be impossible to serve one another with a spirit of sacrifice and humility, forgive each other and treat each other as brothers and sisters. This is His holy will. "Therefore if there is any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and mercy, fulfill my joy by being like-minded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind.  Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others" (Philippians 2:1-4 NKJV).

 


Devotional 43/2019
Weekly Bible reading plan

October 21, Isaiah 62-64; 1 Timothy 1
October 22, Isaiah 65-66; 1 Timothy 2
October 23,  Jeremiah 1-2; 1 Timothy 3
October 24,  Jeremiah 3-5; 1 Timothy 4
October 25,  Jeremiah 6-8; 1 Timothy 5
October 26,  Jeremiah 9-11; 1 Timothy 6
October 27, Jeremiah 12-14; 2 Timothy 1

Memory
On October 27, 1553 Michele Serveto ends up at the stake at the behest of John Calvin. His case echoed throughout Europe, marking the beginning of the modern idea of religious tolerance. Commenting on his death, Sebastiano Castellione wrote: "Killing a man does not mean defending a doctrine, but only killing a man".

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