Today's Lectionary Text
1 Thessalonians 5:1-11
Now concerning the times and the seasons, brothers and sisters, you do not need to have anything written to you. For you yourselves know very well that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. When they say, “There is peace and security,” then sudden destruction will come upon them, as labor pains come upon a pregnant woman, and there will be no escape! But you, beloved, are not in darkness, for that day to surprise you like a thief; for you are all children of light and children of the day; we are not of the night or of darkness. So then let us not fall asleep as others do, but let us keep awake and be sober; for those who sleep sleep at night, and those who are drunk get drunk at night. But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, and put on the breastplate of faith and love, and for a helmet the hope of salvation. For God has destined us not for wrath but for obtaining salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us, so that whether we are awake or asleep we may live with him. Therefore encourage one another and build up each other, as indeed you are doing.
I particularly love the last verse in this passage: “Therefore encourage one another and build up each other, as indeed you are doing.”
Our Disciple III study group is almost to the end of our 32 weeks together studying the Old Testament prophets and Pauls’ letters. It has been a good time of getting to know the Word and each other better, learning from the insights of each other and discussing what is meaningful to us in the text. Reading the Bible is an important spiritual discipline. Being part of a Bible study takes it to a whole other level as we bounce ideas off one another. Alone, it is easy to get distracted and neglect faithful Bible reading. As part of a study group, I am better at staying disciplined in my reading. Sometimes concepts I struggle with make sense when another member of our group shares their insight on the passage.
In one of our recent sessions, the writer explained that Jesus is the eikon (from which we get icon), the image of God. He is God made visible. From this we started talking about the icons on our phones and how the icon gives us access to the program we want to use.
Suddenly it made sense in a whole new way. It is through Jesus that we have access to God. I will never look at the icons on my phone the same way again.
If you can, take part in a Disciple Bible study group, or join a Bible study group in your church or community. If there isn’t one- start one! Wrestling with Scripture with others helps us understand God and each other in new and different ways. It allows the Bible to become a truly living word in each of us.
Five Rivers District Lay Servant Director
Prayer for Reflection
Holy God- inspire us to want to know more about you through the reading of the Scriptures. Help us hear your voice in the sharing of your Word. Amen.
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