OUR DAILY BREAD DAILY DEVOTIONAL FOR FEBRUARY 11, 2023 (AN UNDESERVED GIFT)
TOPIC: AN UNDESERVED GIFT
BIBLE IN ONE YEAR: Leviticus 11–12; Matthew 26:1–25
KEY VERSE: Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the worst. 1 Timothy 1:15
SCRIPTURE FOR TODAY: 1 Timothy 1:12–16
February 11, 2023 – Our Daily Bread Devotional INSIGHT
Stephen was one of the seven men chosen by the twelve apostles to help them with some of their duties (Acts 6:3–6). Soon he began performing great signs and wonders (v. 8). But false charges were made against him, and he was brought before the Sanhedrin, the supreme judicial council of Judaism at that time. There Stephen gave an impassioned speech, concluding with condemning them for their part in the murder of Jesus (7:52). Furious, the members of the Sanhedrin dragged Stephen away and stoned him to death. That’s where Paul (then called Saul) stepped into the story. “The witnesses laid their coats at the feet of . . . Saul” (v. 58), who approved of the killing (8:1). Saul began to persecute the church, dragging off men and women to prison (v. 3). In Acts 9, he was on his way to Damascus to arrest followers of “the Way” (vv. 1–2) when Jesus suddenly appeared, and Saul was forever changed (vv. 3–19).
When my friend gave me a gift recently, I was surprised. I didn’t think I deserved such a nice present from her. She’d sent it after hearing about some work stress I was experiencing. Yet she was going through just as much stress, if not more, than I was, with an aging parent, challenging children, upheaval at work, and strain on her marriage. I couldn’t believe she had thought of me before herself, and her simple gift brought me to tears.
In truth, we’re all recipients of a gift that we could never deserve. Paul put it this way: “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the worst” (1 Timothy 1:15). Although he “was once a blasphemer and persecutor and a violent man, . . . the grace of our Lord was poured out on [him] abundantly” (vv. 13–14). The risen Jesus gave Paul a deep understanding of the free gift of grace. As a result, he learned what it meant to be an undeserving recipient of that gift and he became a powerful instrument of God’s love and told many people about what He had done for him.
It’s only through His grace that we receive love instead of condemnation, and mercy instead of judgment. Today, let’s celebrate the undeserved grace that God has given and be on the lookout for ways to demonstrate that grace to others.
Our Daily Bread Devotional 11 February 2023 || ODB for Saturday Message . Our Daily Bread Ministries (ODB) is a Christian organization founded by Dr. Martin De Haan in 1938. It is based in Grand Rapids, Michigan, with over 600 employees. It produces several devotional publications, including Our Daily Bread. our daily bread devotional for today audio our daily bread booklet.
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