Overcomers

‘If God is for us, who can be against us?’ Romans 8:31NKJV

If ever you think success comes to the people who have an easy ride in life, then think again. Some of the most famous people in history faced tremendous challenges, but overcame them. Novelist Sir Walter Scott was physically disabled. John Bunyan began The Pilgrim’s Progress while imprisoned for his faith. Abraham Lincoln was raised in abject poverty. Statesman Benjamin Disraeli was harassed by harsh and bitter prejudice. Franklin Roosevelt was struck down with paralysis. Educator Booker T. Washington, abolitionist Harriet Tubman, singer Marian Anderson and agricultural inventor George Washington Carver were subjected to continual racial discrimination. Opera singer Enrico Caruso was the first child to survive in a poor Italian family of eighteen. The incomparable violinist, Itzhak Perlman, was born to parents who survived the terrors of a Nazi concentration camp, and was paralysed from the waist down at age four. Albert Einstein was called a slow learner, and written off as unable to be educated.

Helen Keller was blind and deaf, yet she graduated college with the highest honours and impacted the world. Margaret Thatcher, the UK’s first woman Prime Minister, lived upstairs over her father’s grocery shop. For a while her childhood home had no running water and no indoor plumbing. Golda Meier, Israel’s first and only woman Prime Minister, was a divorced grandmother from Milwaukee.

What do these people teach us? That success doesn’t depend on our circumstances, but on overcoming our circumstances! And with God on our side we can do it! Paul, one of the world’s great overcomers wrote, ‘If God is for us, who can be against us?’

SoulFood: Lev 24:17–22, Deut 15:7–11, Matt 5:38–48

word4today an adaptation of The Word For Today is authored by Bob and Debby Gass and published under licence from UCB International Copyright © 2021

Today’s Readings

Leviticus 24:17–22

17 “Whoever takes a human life shall surely be put to death. 18 Whoever takes an animal’s life shall make it good, life for life. 19 If anyone injures his neighbor, as he has done it shall be done to him, 20 fracture for fracture, eye for eye, tooth for tooth; whatever injury he has given a person shall be given to him. 21 Whoever kills an animal shall make it good, and whoever kills a person shall be put to death. 22 You shall have the same rule for the sojourner and for the native, for I am the LORD your God.”

Deuteronomy 15:7–11

“If among you, one of your brothers should become poor, in any of your towns within your land that the LORD your God is giving you, you shall not harden your heart or shut your hand against your poor brother, but you shall open your hand to him and lend him sufficient for his need, whatever it may be. Take care lest there be an unworthy thought in your heart and you say, ‘The seventh year, the year of release is near,’ and your eye look grudgingly on your poor brother, and you give him nothing, and he cry to the LORD against you, and you be guilty of sin. 10 You shall give to him freely, and your heart shall not be grudging when you give to him, because for this the LORD your God will bless you in all your work and in all that you undertake. 11 For there will never cease to be poor in the land. Therefore I command you, ‘You shall open wide your hand to your brother, to the needy and to the poor, in your land.’

Matthew 5:38–48

38 “You have heard that it was said, ‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.’ 39 But I say to you, Do not resist the one who is evil. But if anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. 40 And if anyone would sue you and take your tunic, let him have your cloak as well. 41 And if anyone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles. 42 Give to the one who begs from you, and do not refuse the one who would borrow from you.

43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven. For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. 46 For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? 47 And if you greet only your brothers, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? 48 You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

Sun 01 August, 2021


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