January 27

Luke 4:17b-21

“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free,” vs. 18

After his encounter with the Spirit in his baptism Jesus had gone into the wilderness for 40 days of meditation while he wrestled with his call. There were so many possibilities and alternatives…and all sounded tempting. Finally clarity emerged and he came out of the desert with a clear vision for mission that came straight from the prophet Isaiah. Jesus didn’t invent a new religion but found in the scriptures the core values that would guide his life until the end. We too face conflicting possibilities for life in this world and many sound really good. There are so many things we can do to gain wealth and privilege for ourselves, and we don’t even have to break the law! In our culture we are free to accumulate to our heart’s content and no one bats an eye. But if we’re at all interested in walking the Jesus way those choices only lead us off the path. The old truths still apply: the Spirit-filled followers of Jesus will spend their lives in bringing good news to the poor and offering hope to those who are oppressed. The announced mission of Jesus certainly did not end with his death. Indeed, it was only getting started!

Thought for the Day: Where am I seeing Jesus’ work being done?

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