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Grab Hold
Theme of the week: A Matter of Life and Death
Thursday, February 28, 2013

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Key Bible Verse: "For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life." (John 3:16) Dig Deeper: John 3:1-21

At the heart of the very sweet and tender gospel of God's love for sinners is a very hard and bitter choice: be loved, or be damned. The alternative to the Good News is the possibility of very, very bad news: death. [As today's much-quoted Bible verse says,] you may live forever a life that will be forever marvelous, or you may perish. Take your pick. It's your call. Eternal happiness is your choice. But beware; Jeremy Taylor's words apply here: "God threatens terrible things if we will not be happy."

Christianity is a rescue religion. Christ is a Savior. Saviors save. We don't need some good advice on how to get on in life, the way people who already know how to swim need tips on how to improve their backstroke. We need to be saved the way a drowning person, a nonswimmer, fallen overboard in an Atlantic storm, needs to be snatched out of the water. We don't need tips; we need salvation. And Jesus said we must grab hold of salvation with agon, the same vehement desperation with which a drowning person seizes a life preserver.

—Ben Patterson in Muscular Faith

My Response: I will take time to read today's Dig Deeper, reflecting on the choice Jesus gave Nicodemus and what that choice means to me.

Thought to Apply: Eternity to the godly is a day that has no sunset; eternity to the wicked is a night that has no sunrise.—Thomas Watson (Puritan preacher, writer)

Adapted from Muscular Faith (Tyndale, 2011) by permission. All rights reserved by the copyright holder and/or the publisher. May not be reproduced.

Prayer for the Week
Dear heavenly Father, help me to keep focused on what really matters—on what will last long after my life on earth is finished.

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