A Message of Hope
Ask God that you will be open to hear his Word, obey it and have faith to trust his promises.
Read ACTS 13:21-37
 Then the people asked for a king, and he gave them Saul son of Kish, of the tribe of Benjamin, who ruled forty years.  After removing Saul, he made David their king. He testified concerning him: ‘I have found David son of Jesse a man after my own heart; he will do everything I want him to do.’  “From this man’s descendants God has brought to Israel the Savior Jesus, as he promised.  Before the coming of Jesus, John preached repentance and baptism to all the people of Israel.  As John was completing his work, he said: ‘Who do you think I am? I am not that one. No, but he is coming after me, whose sandals I am not worthy to untie.’  “Brothers, children of Abraham, and you God-fearing Gentiles, it is to us that this message of salvation has been sent.  The people of Jerusalem and their rulers did not recognize Jesus, yet in condemning him they fulfilled the words of the prophets that are read every Sabbath.  Though they found no proper ground for a death sentence, they asked Pilate to have him executed.  When they had carried out all that was written about him, they took him down from the tree and laid him in a tomb.  But God raised him from the dead,  and for many days he was seen by those who had traveled with him from Galilee to Jerusalem. They are now his witnesses to our people.  “We tell you the good news: What God promised our fathers  he has fulfilled for us, their children, by raising up Jesus. As it is written in the second Psalm: “‘You are my Son; today I have become your Father.’  The fact that God raised him from the dead, never to decay, is stated in these words: “‘I will give you the holy and sure blessings promised to David.’  So it is stated elsewhere: “‘You will not let your Holy One see decay.’  “For when David had served God’s purpose in his own generation, he fell asleep; he was buried with his fathers and his body decayed.  But the one whom God raised from the dead did not see decay. Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
ReflectWhat was a major difference between David and Jesus?
Paul tells these Old Testament stories to introduce the good news of what God has done in Jesus because he wants his audience to know that he has seen in Jesus a fulfillment of God’s promises.
At the end of David’s life he spoke confidently of God’s everlasting covenant (2 Sam. 23:5). Yet at times he must have struggled to see God at work, perhaps never more so than in Absalom’s rebellion. Through it all, though, he trusted God, even for things he never saw (36).
There are few of us who can say our life is working out as we would have planned, and often it is not easy to see God at work in the world. Yet Paul points not to a glorious conquest but a death, the death of God’s own Son. Through that death, Paul says, God showed his faithfulness to David (34) and brought salvation to his people (32, 33). Just as David served faithfully whether or not he understood what God was doing (36), we are called to respond to God’s call in faith, and trust him in the good times and bad. God is faithful and he calls each one of us (33) to be part of what he is doing.
What difference will God’s message of salvation make to your life today? How will you help spread it?
Lord, by Your grace, may I be a faithful follower of Jesus, willingly responding to Your call to me each day.
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