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Sunday at 9:30 a.m.
7111 La Jolla Blvd in beautiful La Jolla, CA
14 miles north of downtown San Diego, CA

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Look at the signs of Jesus' love for you

Jesus' disciples had fears and doubts about his resurrection. He told them to look at his hands and his feet, the places where nails had held him to the cross. That's good advice for us, too. When you're afraid or have doubts, it can be helpful to look at the resurrected Jesus and realize his great love for you.

Monday Luke 24:33-39 (NRSV)
[The two followers of Jesus who had gone to Emmaus] got up and returned to Jerusalem; and they found the eleven and their companions gathered together. They were saying, "The Lord has risen indeed, and he has appeared to Simon!" Then they told what had happened on the road, and how he had been made known to them in the breaking of the bread.

While they were talking about this, Jesus himself stood among them and said to them, "Peace be with you."

They were startled and terrified, and thought that they were seeing a ghost. He said to them, "Why are you frightened, and why do doubts arise in your hearts? Look at my hands and my feet; see that it is I myself. Touch me and see; for a ghost does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have."

When the disciples saw the risen Christ, they were terrified and had doubts. To get over their fear and doubt, Jesus told them to look at his hands and feet (the places where he had been nailed to the cross) so they could see it was really him.

That’s not bad advice for us when we’re afraid or have doubts: look at the signs of Jesus’ amazing love for you, visible in the wounds he endured for your sake on the cross.

Get some practice today. Close your eyes and imagine what the risen Christ looks like. Imagine him showing you his hands and feet. If it helps, find a piece of art showing the risen Christ and meditate on that.

Try it for a minute or two. What do you notice?

How do you feel?

What do you want to say to Jesus?

What does he want to say to you?

Tuesday
On Monday, you looked at Jesus hand’s and feet. (If you didn’t already, take some time to do that first.) Today, focus on some other signs of Jesus’ love for you.

What are some ways you experienced Jesus’ love in your childhood?

Your teenage years?

This past year?

Make a list. If nothing comes to mind at first, keep asking yourself the question: What are some signs of Jesus’ love for you? If you keep asking the question, you’ll get more answers.

Wednesday Deuteronomy 21:22-23 (NRSV)
When someone is convicted of a crime punishable by death and is executed, and you hang him on a tree, his corpse must not remain all night upon the tree; you shall bury him that same day, for anyone hung on a tree is under God’s curse. You must not defile the land that the LORD your God is giving you for possession.

These verses from Deuteronomy are a little curious. If someone commits such bad actions that they receive the death sentence and it is carried out by hanging, they are to be buried that same day. If the body stays overnight it contaminates the land. Note that the land is contaminated not by the actions they took to earn the death penalty, but by leaving the body out overnight.

[Other things that defile a land are forsaking God and pursuing idols (Jeremiah 26:7-13 and Ezekiel 36:16-18), returning to a divorced partner after remarriage (Deuteronomy 23:1-4), murder (Numbers 35), and sexual sin (Leviticus 18).]

You probably go through your house once in a while to clean it. How about walking over your property, praying for it, asking that it be freed of anything that is causing it to not be clean? You can do that as you walk through your neighborhood – or your church – or your school – or your business.

Go on a walk today, asking for God to clean places that were defiled, whether on purpose or on accident.

How do you feel?

What did you notice?

Thursday Galatians 3:13-14 (NRSV)
Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us — for it is written, "Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree" — in order that in Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham might come to the Gentiles, so that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.

Paul says that the curse of disobeying the law has fallen not on us but on Jesus, who hung on a tree in our place. Because of this, we are able to receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.

Have you received the promise of the Spirit? How has that been evident in your life?

Friday Romans 5:6-8 (NRSV)
While we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. Indeed, rarely will anyone die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person someone might actually dare to die. But God proves his love for us in that while we still were sinners Christ died for us.

How do you feel as you look on the hands and feet of Jesus and observe the signs of his love for you?

What other signs of Jesus’ love for you have you noticed this week?

Saturday Romans 6:3-6 (NRSV)
Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? Therefore we have been buried with him by baptism into death, so that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life. For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we will certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his. We know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body of sin might be destroyed, and we might no longer be enslaved to sin.

What are have you done this week because of Jesus?

What do you want to do next week because of Jesus?

What do you need help with?


Check out other Bible Studies and videos for 2013 or messages for 2012 or messages for 2011.


La Jolla Lutheran Church is a member of Lutheran Congregations in Mission for Christ, a fast-growing association of churches that believe the Bible. Other LCMC churches in the San Diego area include Penasquitos Lutheran Church at 14484 Penasquitos Drive; and St. Timothy Lutheran Church at 2602 Reo Drive. Check the list of more than 800 congregations to find an LCMC church near you.

For Monday: The Scripture quotations contained herein are from the New Revised Standard Version Bible (NRSV), copyright, 1989, by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of Churches of Christ in the U.S. A. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

For Tuesday through Friday: Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION Copyright 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Bible Publishers.

 


Visit La Jolla Lutheran Church Sunday at 9:30 a.m.

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La Jolla Lutheran Church
7111 La Jolla Blvd, La Jolla, California, 92037
14 miles north of downtown San Diego.

 

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