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Week of April 4, 2016
That You May Know… He Gives You His Spirit
Acts 1:8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come on you, and you will be My witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
Monday

Life Connect

Luke 24:13   Now that same day two of them were on their way to a village called Emmaus, which was about seven miles from Jerusalem. 14 Together they were discussing everything that had taken place. 15 And while they were discussing and arguing, Jesus Himself came near and began to walk along with them. 16 But they were prevented from recognizing Him. 17 Then He asked them, “What is this dispute that you’re having with each other as you are walking?” And they stopped walking and looked discouraged. 

Luke 24:18   The one named Cleopas answered Him, “Are You the only visitor in Jerusalem who doesn’t know the things that happened there in these days?”

Human hope is a fragile thing. When it weakens, it is difficult to restore. The reports (Luke 24:14) that Christ’s tomb was empty only discouraged the disciples hope. They hoped Jesus was the one who was going to redeem Israel. Now their hopes were shattered on a Roman cross and Jesus’ body is missing from the tomb. Have you ever experienced such total hopelessness? No matter what you tried there was nothing you could do to change the situation. In the midst of a hopeless situation, Jesus draws near to the disciples on the road to Emmaus. Jesus joins us in our discouragement; He wants to spend time with us. How often in our hopelessness and discouragement do we fail to draw close to Jesus? 

Prayer Connect

Take time to draw near to the Savior who draws near to you.  



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Tuesday

Life Connect

Luke 24:30   It was as He reclined at the table with them that He took the bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to them. 31 Then their eyes were opened, and they recognized Him, but He disappeared from their sight. 32 So they said to each other, “Weren’t our hearts ablaze within us while He was talking with us on the road and explaining the Scriptures to us?” 33 That very hour they got up and returned to Jerusalem. They found the Eleven and those with them gathered together, 34 who said, “The Lord has certainly been raised, and has appeared to Simon!” 35 Then they began to describe what had happened on the road and how He was made known to them in the breaking of the bread.

In the previous verses (vv.13-27), we read that these two individuals are having a conversation with the risen Christ, yet they did not recognize Him. In fact, in v. 21, they say “we had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel.” In their blindness, they were without hope. Notice what happens in v. 31. As Christ breaks the bread, their eyes are opened, and they recognize Jesus – the resurrected Christ who died for the redemption of Israel. In the verses that follow, we see that their hope was restored. Maybe you are like those who didn’t recognize Jesus – blinded and without hope. What are some things we can do to recognize the glory of the Lord in our lives? How can we seek the Lord as he opens our eyes?  

Hope is called the anchor of the soul (Hebrews 6:19), because it gives stability to the Christian life. But hope is not simply a ‘wish’ (I wish that such-and-such would take place); rather, it is that which latches on to the certainty of the promises of the future that God has made. – R.C. Sproul 

Prayer Connect

Take time to seek the Lord that your eyes might be open to his glory. 



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Wednesday

Life Connect

Luke 24:44   Then He told them, “These are My words that I spoke to you while I was still with you—that everything written about Me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets, and the Psalms must be fulfilled.” 45 Then He opened their minds to understand the Scriptures.

The wages of our sin is death. Jesus paid that price on the cross and reconciled us from the wrath of God. The disciples didn’t fully understand what happened on the cross or why He died and rose again. Though they knew the Scriptures, they still thought Jesus was going to be a political leader. That all changed when Jesus “opened their minds to understand the Scriptures”. When our minds are opened, our lives become fueled by the importance of knowing the truth of God’s word. We then begin to understand and grow in God’s word, which leads us to show God’s word to others that don’t know Christ. We the Church, corporately, begin to push back what’s dark in the world. This is your only hope, my only hope, our only hope. Luke underscores that they have been transformed (eyes have been opened) in their understanding of God’s purposes as they are centered in Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection. Only the grace of the Lord can open our minds to understand His Word. Only the truth of Christ can melt our hearts of stone.  

Prayer Connect

Ask the Lord to give you a mind that seeks and a heart that is open to the grace and will of the Savior today.  



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Thursday

Life Connect

Luke24: 46 He also said to them, “This is what is written: The Messiah would suffer and rise from the dead the third day, 47 and repentance for forgiveness of sins would be proclaimed in His name to all the nations, beginning at Jerusalem. 48 You are witnesses of these things. 49 And look, I am sending you what My Father promised. As for you, stay in the city until you are empowered from on high.”

What great comfort and joy we have knowing that those who believe in Jesus Christ as Savior have the promise of the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. God freely pours out His Spirit upon every believer. We also see over and over in Scripture that the Holy Spirit is both promised and permanent (See 1 Peter 1:3-5). God not only gives us His presence, but empowers believers through the Spirit. Jesus reminds us that we are empowered from on high. What a great reminder: anything we do in our own strength is weakness. Yet anything we do in the will of the Lord through the Holy Spirit is dynamic and powerful. Are you living a Spirit-led and Spirit-filled life? 

A church in the land without the Spirit is rather a curse than a blessing. If you have not the Spirit of God, Christian worker, remember that you stand in somebody else’s way; you are a fruitless tree standing where a fruitful tree might grow.” (Spurgeon)

Prayer Connect

Ask the Lord to give you a spirit of power, love, and sound judgment today (2 Tim. 1:7)



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Friday

Life Connect

Luke 24:50   Then He led them out as far as Bethany, and lifting up His hands He blessed them. 51 And while He was blessing them, He left them and was carried up into heaven. 52 After worshiping Him, they returned to Jerusalem with great joy. 53 And they were continually in the temple complex praising God.

Jesus’ departure is accomplished via a dual movement: away and up (NICNT) into heaven signals both the finality of Jesus’ departure and His glorified status. Luke draws a direct parallel between the going of Jesus and the coming of the Holy Spirit (NICNT). When Jesus ascended into heaven, He “left them”, but did not leave us empty handed. Rather, Jesus’ ascension marked the coming of the Holy Spirit who enables men to understand truth, exalts Jesus Christ, convicts of sin, guides us to righteousness, and cultivates within every believer Christian character, comfort, gifts, and strength to serve the risen Savior. Are you living in the power of the Holy Spirit today? 

O Holy Spirit, descend plentifully into my heart. Enlighten the dark corners of this neglected dwelling and scatter there Thy cheerful beams. – Saint Augustine 

Prayer Connect

Psa. 51:10 God, create a clean heart for me and renew a steadfast spirit within me. 11 Do not banish me from Your presence or take Your Holy Spirit from me. 12 Restore the joy of Your salvation to me, and give me a willing spirit.  



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