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Devotionals :: Day by Day by Grace :: Today's Reading

Hoekstra's Day by Day by Grace (May 17th)

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Those We Hope to Reach through Ministry

But even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe. (2 Corinthians 4:3-4a)

In this servants-of-grace ministry God has given us, He wants to use us to reach people. These people are in a desperate spiritual condition. Those we hope to reach are perishing, spiritually blind, and unbelieving.

Those who do not know the grace of God in Jesus Christ are "perishing." They are spiritually dead (just as we once were). "And you…were dead in trespasses and sins" (Ephesians 2:1). Even worse, they are heading toward an everlasting death. "The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one according to his works. Then Death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire" (Revelation 20:13-15).

These who are dead (and facing everlasting death) are lost. They are wandering from the fold of God, taking a path of self-service. "All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned, every one, to his own way" (Isaiah 53:6). They need a shepherd to seek after them. "What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he loses one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness, and go after the one which is lost until he finds it…for the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost" (Luke 15:4; 19:10).

These perishing and lost ones are also spiritually "blinded." This is why they cannot "see" the truth we share with them. "But even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, whose minds the god of this age has blinded." The false god of this world (Satan) is blinding people to the truth by feeding them with lies and deceptions. He is constantly offering counterfeit philosophical and religious messages to keep men from embracing the truth.

Ultimately, the problem with perishing, lost, and blind people is that they "do not believe." Consequently, they already stand guilty. "He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God" (John 3:18). However, a loving God has provided the remedy. "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life" (John 3:16). By God's grace, we can proclaim this great message.

Dear Lord, thank You for all that You did to rescue me from among the perishing, the blind, and the unbelieving. I rejoice now in faith toward You! Open my eyes to see the desperate condition of those all around me, Amen.

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