The Journey with Ron Moore
Devotion Text

Luke 2:25-26

Now there was a man in Jerusalem called Simeon, who was righteous and devout. He was waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen the Lord’s Christ.

Simeon had waited a long time for the coming Messiah. A righteous and devout man full of the Holy Spirit, his heart was set on the comfort that God’s Anointed One would bring to his people. God promised Simeon that before he died his eyes would gaze upon God’s Anointed One.

When Jesus was eight days old, Mary and Joseph took him to be circumcised in accordance with the Old Testament Law. The Holy Spirit moved Simeon to meet them in the temple courts. Simeon took Jesus in his arms and praised God, saying:

For my eyes have seen your salvation, which you prepared in the sight of all people, a light for revelation to the Gentiles and for glory to your people Israel (Luke 2:31-32).

Have you seen the Lord’s salvation? Have you experienced the peace that Jesus brings? The little baby Simeon held, grew up and went to the cross to die for your sins. It is only through Jesus that we can have peace with God. I invite you to pray the following prayer and trust in Jesus today.

Heavenly Father, I confess that I am a sinner and am separated from you because of my sin. I understand that apart from you the results of my sin will be eternal death, separated from you forever. I know there is nothing I can do to work my way to you or somehow earn your forgiveness. So right now I trust in Jesus alone as the One who died on the cross for my sin. I trust in Jesus as the only way I can have an eternal relationship with you. Thank you for the peace I can have with you through Jesus Christ. In his name I pray, Amen.

 

For parents: Discuss what it means to be a Christian with your children. Refer to chapter 3 in Living Grounded. This is the most important conversation you can have with them.


 

Today on The Journey Broadcast:

 

The King’s Presence

Devotion Text

Matthew 2:1-2

After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem and asked, Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.

On Christmas cards, it’s all picture-perfect. With a star illuminating the manger, three wise men bow down before the baby Jesus with their camels parked outside. And, of course, at the bottom of the card are the Hallmark words—Wise men still seek him today.  But…let’s see what Scripture says about these visitors.

What or who is a magi? These men were magicians or astrologers known for their wisdom. They may have been from Persia. If that is the case, they had knowledge of Scripture that could be traced back to the time of Daniel (see Daniel 5:11). 

How many magi traveled to see Jesus?  We don’t know for sure. Based on the number of gifts that were presented to Jesus many conclude that there were three. Some traditions even have names for these men. But their names or numbers are not given in Scripture.

What star did they see? The star that guided them could have been a supernova or a conjunction of planets. One writer says that it was a supernatural reality similar to the Shekinah that led the Israelites in the days of Moses. All we know for sure is that the star was a true miracle of God.

While there are things we don’t know about the wise men, here are the things we know for certain. These men made a great sacrifice to see Jesus. They traveled a great distance. They brought their best to him. They sought Jesus and didn’t stop until they found him. They worshiped him. That is the heart of the magi story. And…that should be the heart of our Christmas story as well.

Father, your word says that we will find you if we seek you with all our hearts. May we, like the magi, truly seek after you. May we truly worship Jesus, our Savior, and Lord. In his name we pray. Amen.

 

For parents: In the first chapter of Living Grounded are the instructions for a life map. If you have not completed a life map with your high school or college-age children or grandchildren, this Christmas break would be a great time to do so. Share your insights with us at prayer@ronmoore.org.


 

This Week on The Journey Broadcast:

 

Owning My Influence

Devotion Text

Matthew 2:10-11

When they saw the star, they were overjoyed. On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh.

The journey to Jesus is seldom free of obstacles. It certainly wasn’t easy for the wise men. Their trip was long, tiring, and treacherous. Their interaction with Herod, although they were unaware of his intentions, was sinister. But they set their hearts on seeing Jesus. Nothing would hold them back.

By the time the wise men arrived, Mary and Joseph were living in a house. Jesus was probably a toddler. But there, after the long journey, they bowed down and worshiped him. They presented Jesus with expensive gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. J. C. Ryle wrote in reference to the magi, “We read of no greater faith in the whole volume of the Bible . . . This is the kind of faith that God delights to honor.”

The journey to Jesus is seldom free of obstacles. The reality with Jesus is not always a storybook life or a storybook ending. It is often tiring and messy. The believer is not free from disappointment, discouragement, or disillusionment. Sometimes the terrain is rugged and the paths steep.  But when we set our hearts on seeing Jesus, nothing will hold us back.

Father, keep us strong for the journey. Pump perseverance into our depleted hearts. Pump courage into our fearful minds. Keep our feet on the path even when the detours look more appealing. In Jesus’ name. Amen. 

 

For parents: Have you had some obstacles in your life? Share with your children how your obstacles have strengthened your walk with Jesus. And we would love to hear your stories as well. Send them to us at: prayer@ronmoore.org.


 

This Week on The Journey Broadcast:

 

Owning My Influence

Devotion Text

Matthew 2:13

When they had gone, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream. “Get up,” he said, “take the child and his mother and escape to Egypt. Stay there until I tell you, for Herod is going to search for the child to kill him.”

King Herod did not allow for threats to his authority. He executed several of his own children and some of his wives because he thought they were plotting against him. With the birth of Jesus, his brutality was demonstrated in chilling ways.

The wise men’s search for Jesus made Herod aware that a newborn king was in the area. Since he wasn’t certain of Jesus’ exact location, he ordered the killing of all boys, two years old or younger, in Bethlehem and the surrounding area. Jesus escaped only because Joseph was warned in a dream. When we think of the events surrounding Jesus’ birth we often picture Jesus sleeping in “heavenly peace.” But in Herod’s actions, we see that hell was unleashed when God became man.

Death followed Jesus throughout his life. From the moment of his birth, those in authority were trying to kill him. And finally, they did. But not as a helpless victim; Jesus voluntarily gave himself up for us on the cross.  He died in my place. He died so that I could live. Have you surrendered to the King? Or, like Herod, are you still trying to keep him out of your life?

Father, shatter my fanciful thoughts of a manageable baby in a manger. Move my mind to see the Suffering Servant and bow before the One who died on the cross so that I could live. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

 

For parents: Discuss the difficult events surrounding the birth of Jesus with your children. Satan was actively trying to destroy him as soon as he entered humanity.


 

Today on The Journey Broadcast:

 

Understanding My Influence

Devotion Text

Luke 2:41-46

Every year Jesusparents went to Jerusalem for the Festival of the Passover. When he was twelve years old, they went up to the festival, according to the custom. After the festival was over, while his parents were returning home, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem, but they were unaware of it. Thinking he was in their company, they traveled on for a day. Then they began looking for him among their relatives and friends. When they did not find him, they went back to Jerusalem to look for him. After three days they found him in the temple courts, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions.

Jesus didn’t stay an infant for long. It was time for Mary and Joseph to prepare Jesus to become a “son of commandment” (bar mitzvah). At that age young boys were obligated to observe the religious practices personally. So Jesus made the trip for Passover. Two decades later he would make the trip again, one last time, giving his life on the cross.

We have spent this last year journeying with Jesus through the Gospels. We have considered his miracles and healings. We have learned from his teachings and parables. We have observed his interaction with the disciples, who, like us, sometimes just didn’t grasp the significance of the person they followed. But my prayer is that through these past months we have seen Jesus in a deeper and more meaningful way.

Our journey has not been primarily to gain more knowledge but to change our hearts. Our desire has been to:

 

Know Jesus more intimately

Love Jesus more passionately

Follow Jesus wholeheartedly

 

Father, that is my desire as I end one year and begin another. Help me start fresh with a deep commitment to follow hard after you through the great joys and challenges that a new year will bring. Thank you for your blessings over this past year. And thank you that regardless of the challenges and obstacles ahead I know that you will be with me each step of the way. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

 

We would love to hear from you about your journey with Jesus. What has he taught you this past year? What excites you most about the year to come? Share your thoughts with us at prayer@ronmoore.org.


 

Today on The Journey Broadcast:

 

Accepting My Influence

Prayer

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