Roger Bothwell

Roger Bothwell
Roger Bothwell's Devotionals

The Most Unique Being Ever

According to Leviticus 16 before the high priest could officiate on the Day of Atonement he had to change into the simple white linen garment of a common priest.  The symbolism was prophetic regarding the nature of Jesus’ coming to earth.  Jesus came, not as a king or ruler but, as a common man. In Philippians 2 Paul wrote, “Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.  And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death - even death on a cross!”
 
According to the book of Hebrews Jesus became our high priest after His ascension.  He is a unique priest.  He was our sacrifice.  Now He is our priest. There is no one and never has been any being in the universe that by personal experience so understands us. Notice how Paul says, “He made Himself nothing.”  Someday when we have the opportunity to see a replay of Jesus’ birth in Bethlehem (You can be sure every detail is carefully preserved in Heaven’s libraries.) we will be shocked at the gruesome details of that wretched stable.  We are told Lucifer was taken aback and thought a mistake had been surely made.  How could the glorious King of the Universe so degrade Himself?

The next time we think someone isn’t giving us the respect we think we should have, let us remember Philippians 2 where Paul admonishes us to “let this mind be in you.”  He was speaking of Jesus’ mind.  Jesus “was treated as we deserve that we might be treated as He deserves.”

Mystery Hidden for Ages

There was a time before our time before the time of earth itself when all was well in God’s universe.  Yet He knew it would not always be so.  He knew how it would be spoiled and who would spoil it. God could have used that knowledge and chosen not to create the great angel Lucifer. Should He have done so He would have been forever a fraud.  Freedom of choice and self-determination is the foundation of love.  Angels would never have known that God’s government of love only existed because He used His foreknowledge to not create anyone who would choose to rebel.  God’s universe of peace and love would have been based on a lie.  Freedom would have been non-existent and thus love would be polluted.  God’s character would be flawed even if He were the only one to know.
 
Romans 16:25 is a fascinating verse.  It reads, “Now to him who is able to establish you in accordance with my gospel, the message I proclaim about Jesus Christ, in keeping with the revelation of the mystery hidden for long ages past.”   The mystery was sin would happen and God had a plan; the details of which were horrific.  It all involved Jesus stepping from His throne, becoming one of His created and submitting to a time of torture and death.
 
We think we are anxious for God to bring this to an end.  He is much more anxious than we.  But with extraordinary patience He endures our heartaches and pains and sufferings to make sure every issue, every question, every accusation, every doubt is clarified.  This sin thing must be settled for eternity.  It must never happen again because God only has one Son to give.  He gave.  He didn’t loan.

Advertising Slogans

Yesterday we talked about catchy advertising and our Christian need to pay attention to something we could use to promote our Jesus.  We talked about Toyota’s “Let’s Go Places.”  Almost immediately I got an email from a friend that reminded me of Hellman’s Mayonnaise’s “Bring Out the Hellman’s and Bring Out the Best.”   That’s a great one.  If we bring out the Gospel we bring out the best.  There is not another religion in the world that comes close to offering what Jesus offers.  Christianity is the only faith that does not require some form of works.  It is the only religion where salvation is a gift of grace.  It’s the best.  If you are a member of a church that claims to be Christian and yet requires some work to be saved they are a sham.
 
May I add that Christianity rightly lived brings out the best in us.  We become a temple of the Holy Spirit.  “I in Christ and Christ in me” makes all the difference in the kind of person we are.  Little by little by growth we exchange the lusts of the flesh for the fruits of the Spirit.  “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control.”  Galatians 5.  We become quality people and not because we are so wonderful but because of the wonderful Being residing in us.
 
I am thinking of another product with the slogan “Breakfast of Champions.”  Now I wonder what product that could be.  When we watch people who do things really well we get a bit envious.  I’ve never met anyone who if having the chance would not choose to be a champion.  Jesus makes us so.

"Let's Go Places"

Huge corporations like car companies spend enormous amounts of money advertising.  Those commercials are the product of vast market research and are tested on groups of people before being broadcasted over television networks.  We, as Christians, spend large sums of money on evangelism.  We want to obey Jesus’ command at the end of Matthew and take the Good News to all the world.  We are in the marketing business.  It seems that it would make good sense to pay attention to the marketing strategies used by those huge companies.
 
Toyota’s most current slogan is “Let’s Go Places.”  It has a short snappy appeal.  We like to travel and see new sights and hear new sounds.  If we can make the connection of going places with Toyota all the better for Toyota.  Therefore, I want to plagiarize Toyota’s slogan and encourage you to be sure to make and keep your connection with Jesus because by doing so you will be “Going Places.”  Many of those places will be out of this world but many will be right here on planet earth.
 
Jesus will take you to a place of peace and rest from trying to save yourself.  He does that for you.  He will give you rest from guilt.  He might have a special task for you and thus guide you to a faraway place so you can do His will.  So often we speak of Christianity in terms of eternal life.  Let’s also add the idea of unlimited travel to places where no man has gone before.
 
Love Jesus and as Dr. Seuss said, “Oh, the Places You’ll Go.”  Heaven will be filled with travel agents. Can you imagine the number of frequent flier miles you will accumulate on a trip across just one galaxy?

The Fly

The glow of the computer screen is the only light in my room this evening.  I am trying to write but a huge house fly is attracted to the light of the screen and I just can’t concentrate.  Every time I think I am ready to start writing it buzzes in circles and figure eights as it dive bombs the screen.  I am having malicious, murderous thoughts regarding this filthy invader from who knows where.  Now it is walking on the screen following the text as it comes up on the screen.  This is almost as bad as one being in your room at night while you are trying to fall asleep.  You are almost in dreamland when one lands on your face and promptly walks across your lips.  Yuck.
 
It is interesting what we get used to.  I have seen Masai children with flies lined up side by side drinking from their eyes.  The children were not concerned at all.  It is very much that way for all of us regarding bad habits or sins.  The first time we are tempted we are disturbed but should we entertain them or tolerate them being a part of our lives we soon grow unconcerned.  It is no big deal.  But the truth is they are bad habits or sins because they are harmful and just because we have grown accustomed to them does not mean they stop harming us.  Not only do we become accustomed to them we grow to love them as an old friend.
 
Be wise today.  Read Proverbs 1 and 2.  It is excellent counsel regarding making right choices and not allowing a persistent sin to nag you into compliance and lead you to ultimate destruction.  
 
Now if I can only kill this ….. fly!!

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