Bethany Lutheran Brethren Church
Staten Island, NY
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Bethany Blog

Bethany Blog


Check out Sunday's Messages and Devotionals from Pastor Paul Couch!


Summer Reading - July 10

Exodus 10 & Luke 10

How has God convicted me of sin in these readings?

Even as a Christian, I still find that I deal with a hard heart at times.  It is not difficult to see the good I should do or the things that are harming me if I continue in them.  I can understand this in my mind, but my heart so easily lacks the strength and motivation to do what is right.  It is easy to read about Pharaoh and think that he is particularly bad and constantly changing his mind.  But in all honesty, I am the same way.  I can say like the Apostle Paul, “For I have a desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out” (Romans 7:18b).  May I not be like Chorazin, Bethsaida, Capernaum, and Pharaoh.  May I not be like those who have seen the wonders of God and fail to repent.

How has God comforted me with grace in these readings?

The reason that I am part of God’s kingdom is not because of me or my character or actions.  It is because of the gracious work of God to reveal to me His goodness.  The fact that I see that Jesus is the Son of God is simply because God has opened my eyes to receive it.  My place in God’s kingdom is based on His sovereign choice and work.  I praise God that He has come to my rescue and softened my heart to see Him in His love and mercy. 

Where do I see Jesus in these readings?

Jesus is the ever patient One who continues to do good and marvelous works even though they are often forgotten and turned to the side.  As Moses endured Pharaoh, so Jesus endures me.  Jesus is also committed to being my neighbor. He was willing to associate with me, help me in my brokenness and uncleanliness.  He paid for my life and care, not simply with money, but by His own death.  He has come to my rescue.  Jesus is my good Samaritan!

How is God calling me to respond to His word today?

God is calling me to trust Him deeply today.To open my eyes and see what He has done for me.To list His works and to be moved again by His greatness.He is calling me to sit at His feet and rejoice in His words and teaching knowing that this is the highest good.He is calling me to walk as He walked, showing kindness to my neighbor in need.May I have eyes glued to Jesus today and may I join Him in His labor.