What I've been thinking and what I've been reading for you to compare notes.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Hope Authenticated

DAY NINE: Thursday, October 23, 2008

Read Acts 23:1-11

"Paul realized that some of the members of the high council were Sadducees and some were Pharisees, so he shouted, 'Brothers, I am a Pharisee, as were my ancestors! And I am on trial because my hope is in the resurection of the dead!'" ACts 23:6 (NLT)

U.S. Treasury Secretary Michael Blumenthal found himself in an embarrassing situation in Beethoven's, an expensive San Francisco restaurant in 1979. Blumenthal was confronted with a sizable dinner bill, and expired VISA card, and a waiter who wanted proof of signature to back up an out-of-town check. Blumenthal thought for a minute, and solved his predicament the only way he knew how: he produced a dollar bill and pointed to his signature, W. M. Blumenthal, in the bottom right-hand corner. The signature matched, and Blumenthal's personal check was accepted.

In Acts 23 Paul stood before two brands of religious hypocrites: 1) The Pharisees, Jewish ritualists of Paul's heritage - people who knew truth but had no personal relationship with God and therefore couldn't share in His love; and 2) Saducees, rationalists who ignored God's truth to follow their own way apart from God. Both groups were far from God and didn't share in the hope that true Christ followers have - the hope of the resurrection of the dead!

We know the hope of eternal in Christ is true because Christ authenticated life after death by His own resurrection! He signed the check by His sacrificial death and then proved it was payment enought for our sin by raising from the dead!

Action step for today: Thank God for the sure and certain hope that Christ followers have of living forever! Ask Him to cleanse you from the bad traits of Pharisees (adding to God's laws) and Saducees (ignoring God's laws.)


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