Translated by Allan Liang
Thanks be to God, for Christ has given us knowledge of the mysteries of heaven and the grace that saves all who believe. If we have a humble and seeking heart, we will understand the mysteries of the parables, for understanding comes not from intellect or social status. However, if we have a hard and unrepentant heart, even if we see, we will not understand (Mark 4:13). One saying sums this up: The bible is a book that the farmer’s daughter can understand, but a book that scholars cannot understand. (Luke 24:45-49). We are reminded to read the bible with all our hearts and minds and with utmost piety. Jesus continued to speak parables after the parable of the sower, challenging our attitudes to God. The Lord emphasized here saying: Those who have ears should listen. The word of God is as a lamp, the light of our way. Jesus is the only true light, having been saved by him, we are witnesses to the light (Matthew 5:13-16). By the grace and power from God, we have become bright, shining lamps, lamps belonging to God (Proverbs 20:27), lamps used by God. Let us reflect upon whether we have become the lamp placed under a bowl, unable to display the grace of God, and unable to bring God’s grace to the life of others. Is my lamp (the life of the spirit) always shining brightly for God, or is it turned off at times and on at other times, shining only dimly? Have we hidden the gifts and grace given to us by God and refuse to use them for his glory, rather choosing to enjoy the comforts of life? Throughout the gospels, Lord Jesus emphasized four times the principle of the kingdom of heaven: he who has, more will be added to him, he who does not have, even has has will be taken from him (Matthew 13;12, Mark 4:25, Luke 8:18, Luke 19:26). Those who strive for personal spiritual growth and growth of others will certainly receive greater spiritual powers and gifts. Those who harden their hearts and do not accept the saving gospel of God can only perish and lose even what little they have. Yesterday was Easter Sunday, the topic of the sermon being “on the preaching of the power of Jesus’ resurrection in the midst of pandemic”. Let us combine the devotion scriptures and think about whether we truly believe the reduction and whether we understand the relation between the meaning of the resurrection and ourselves. How does this impact the way I live today? Why do I still fear the pandemic at times, may the peace of God be with us. For Jesus’ death could not cause his disciples to die with him, rather his resurrection allowed his disciples to die with him, turning his disciples into martyrs (as Pastor Wang Yi).Can our spiritual lives be like lamps before people, connected to our understanding of the resurrection? Please carefully read the following verses: Mark 4:21-25, and meditate with prayer: reading these passages in light of the resurrection, how much of the truth of the resurrection do I understand? How can we be like Jesus’ twelve disciples, shining for him and even becoming crazy for the gospel? May God help us so that we may become bright lamps shining in the midst of darkness and evil. May we pray for those affected by the pandemic and those who have not yet accepted God, may we bring the gospel to them such that they may know the only light, truth and path, and receive the life everlasting.