While the people of Israel were still at Rephidim, the warriors of Amalek attacked them. Moses commanded Joshua, “Choose some men to go out and fight the army of Amalek for us. Tomorrow, I will stand at the top of the hill, holding the staff of God in my hand.” So Joshua did what Moses had commanded and fought the army of Amalek. Meanwhile, Moses, Aaron, and Hur climbed to the top of a nearby hill. As long as Moses held up the staff in his hand, the Israelites had the advantage. But whenever he dropped his hand, the Amalekites gained the advantage. Moses’ arms soon became so tired he could no longer hold them up. So Aaron and Hur found a stone for him to sit on. Then they stood on each side of Moses, holding up his hands. So his hands held steady until sunset. As a result, Joshua overwhelmed the army of Amalek in battle. Exodus 17:8-13
Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit. And there are varieties of ministries, and the same Lord. There are varieties of effects, but the same God who works all things in all persons. But to each one is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. 1 Corinthians 12:4-7
Today's thoughts from today's verses:
We begin this week’s Devotionals with a story: “It was the coldest winter ever. Many animals died because of the cold. The hedgehogs, realizing the situation, decided to group together to keep warm. This way they covered and protected themselves; but the quills of each one wounded their closest companions. After a while, they decided to distance themselves one from the other and they began to die, alone and frozen. So they had to make a choice: either accept the quills of their companions or disappear from the Earth. Wisely, they decided to go back to being together. They learned to live with the little wounds caused by the close relationship with their companions in order to receive the heat that came from the others. This way they were able to survive.”
Whether it is hedgehogs facing the coldest winter ever, Israel’s army facing the warriors of Amalek, or the church facing the challenges of its mission, each individual contributing to the “common good” of the group is a vital part of what is necessary for survival. With the church of Jesus Christ, however, there is much more that comes into play than mere “group dynamics.” God Almighty, as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, is at work in her midst in ways that elevate her individual and collective nature into something that is truly supernatural and amazing. Christ’s church will become a powerful team as she increasingly experiences God’s presence individually and collectively while she learns truly to be the Body of Christ. This is the focus of this week’s Devotionals.
Today's prayer response from today's thoughts:
Lord, I confess that because I am so used to organizations with their human leaders and structures, I easily forget the supernatural nature of your church. It is always supposed to be you in our midst empowering us in amazing ways so that we are used in mighty ways as the church of Jesus Christ. Please take away any conditioning in my life and that of your people everywhere, that hinders what you alone can do in us and through us as the true body of Christ. Amen!
Posted on Mon, September 4, 2017
by Ken Hart