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Friday, July 3, 2020

2020.07.03 Hopewell @Home ▫ Luke 6:27–38

Questions from the Scripture text: To whom does Jesus say that He is speaking in Luke 6:27? Whom does He say to love? To whom does He say to do good? Whom does He say to bless (Luke 6:28)? For whom does He say to pray? To whom does He say to offer the other cheek (Luke 6:29)? To whom does He say to be willing to give a tunic? To whom does he say to give (Luke 6:30)? What does He say not to ask for from whom? What does Jesus say to do to others (Luke 6:31)? What does Jesus say does not necessarily commend someone’s godliness (Luke 6:32)? Who else loves those who love them (Luke 6:33)? What else, similarly, would not commend us (Luke 6:34)? What four things does Luke 6:35 say to do? What will we receive? Why? What does Luke 6:36 say to do? Why? What three things does Luke 6:37 talk about? What will be the result of our doing so with others? How does Luke 6:38 describe this? With what?
There are at least three incentives here for our Christian behavior.

First, we should desire to live in such a way that shows that a genuine work of grace has been done in us. Our best opportunity for that comes, frankly, when we are abused. It’s pretty normal to be loving toward those who love us, and generous toward those whom we expect might pay it back one of these days. What is extremely unusual is to repay with kindness when others hate, curse, abuse, strike, and steal from us. So, when we are mistreated, or when someone who could never pay us back has need, we are in prime position to follow this incentive for doing them good. It’s an opportunity to show that a real work of grace has been done in us.

Second, we should desire to reflect our father’s character (Luke 6:35-36). There’s only one way that this grace can come to work in us: if the Spirit of God, the Spirit of the Son of God, the Spirit of sonship, produces it in us. Bear the family resemblance. That’s what the Scripture is saying at this point. Your Father is invisible. Let His children be visible, so that others may view in them the likeness of some of His features.

Third, the Lord has commanded His providence in such a way that generally follows the principle that you reap what you sow. Whether with jumping to conclusions and denouncing others (Luke 6:37), or being forgiving and generous with them (Luke 6:37-38), even a desire to be blessed of the Lord in a way designed by the Lord will helpfully motivate us unto godly behavior.

Oh, how we should love the Lord such that our obedience and service come out of that love and thankfulness! But, how good our Lord is to give us these other incentives, and how appropriate it therefore is for us to make use of every possible incentive to serve and obey Him.
What enemies are giving you an opportunity to act like God’s children? How do you plan to love and bless them? 
Suggested songs: ARP1 “How Blessed the Man” or TPH174 “The Ten Commandments”

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