Verse of the Day and Devotion 5/30/2024

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Verse of the Day

by Bible League International,

Narrated by Artificial Intelligence – Andrew,

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Jesus came and told his disciples, “I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth. Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. – Matthew 28:18-19 NLT


In Old Testament times, God’s redemption at first focused on the whole human race, but as time went on His focus narrowed to a smaller and smaller percentage of people. The prevalence of sin was the reason for the narrowing. After Cain murdered his brother Abel, God’s redemptive focus narrowed to the line of Seth. When sin began to dominate even in the line of Seth, God narrowed His focus to the line of Noah. After Noah, God narrowed His focus to the Israelites. Then to the southern kingdom of Judah, and then to the remnant of Judah that returned from captivity in Babylon. When Jesus came to the earth, there were not many true believers.

A good metaphor to describe this narrowing process is a barrel of apples. In the beginning, the barrel was full of good apples. However, whenever an apple turned bad, God would remove it from the barrel lest it pollute the remaining apples. The process continued until there were very few apples left in the barrel.

In New Testament times, in contrast, God’s narrowing stopped with Jesus, who was perfectly faithful to God. From that point on, God has expanded His redemptive focus. It began in Jerusalem, then all of Judea and Samaria, and it now embraces the whole world (Acts 1:8). Jesus Christ’s conquest of sin and His assumption of all authority in heaven and earth is the reason for the expansion. Our verses for today reflect this new universal focus of God’s redemptive concern.

The barrel metaphor now needs some development. At the time of Christ, the barrel had very few good apples in it. However, God began to take bad apples from outside the barrel and put them into the barrel. Instead of polluting the good apples, however, the bad apples were turned into good apples. This process will continue until the full number of apples is brought into the barrel.

The transformative power of God’s redemptive work reaching the ends of the earth is a marvel to behold. We should be eternally grateful to God that, instead of being removed from His kingdom for our sins, we have been added to His kingdom through the precious blood of Jesus Christ.

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