40 Days to the Cross: Reflections from Great Thinkers (Week Four: Monday)

Monday

Confession: Psalm 90:1–8

O Lord, you have been our help in all generations.

Before the mountains were born

and you brought forth the earth and the world,

even from everlasting to everlasting, you are God.

You return man to the dust,

saying, “Return, O sons of man.”

For a thousand years in your eyes

are like yesterday when it passes,

or like a watch in the night.

You sweep them away like a flood.

They fall asleep.

In the morning they are like grass that sprouts anew.

In the morning it blossoms and sprouts anew;

by evening it withers and dries up.

For we are brought to an end by your anger,

and we hasten off by your wrath.

You have put our iniquities before you,

our hidden sins into the light of your countenance.

Reading: Mark 13:9–13

“But you, watch out for yourselves! They will hand you over to councils and you will be beaten in the synagogues and will have to stand before governors and kings because of me, for a witness to them. And the gospel must first be proclaimed to all the nations. And when they arrest you and hand you over, do not be anxious beforehand what you should say, but whatever is given to you at that hour, say this. For you are not the ones who are speaking, but the Holy Spirit. And brother will hand over brother to death, and a father his child, and children will rise up against parents and have them put to death. And you will be hated by all because of my name. But the one who endures to the end—this one will be saved.”

Reflection

Learn the lessons of the evangelic conversation—of mastery over the body, a meek spirit, purity of mind, and destruction of pride. Pressed into the service, add to your gifts for the Lord’s sake; robbed, never go to law; hated, love; persecuted, endure; slandered, entreat. Be dead to sin; be crucified to God. Cast all your care upon the Lord, that you may be found where are tens of thousands of angels, assemblies of the firstborn, the thrones of prophets, sceptres of patriarchs, crowns of martyrs, and praises of righteous men. Earnestly desire to be numbered with those righteous men in Christ Jesus our Lord.

—Basil of Caesarea

Admonition to the Young

Response

How are you being an effective witness of Jesus? On what occasions have you felt the Holy Spirit guiding your speech? Write down your prayer for the Spirit’s guidance as you tell others about Christ’s work in your life.[1]

 

[1] Van Noord, R., & Strong, J. (Eds.). (2014). 40 Days to the Cross: Reflections from Great Thinkers. Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.

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