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December 19 – Christ’s suffering

Since therefore Christ suffered in the flesh, arm yourselves with the same way of thinking, for whoever has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin. – I Peter 4:1

Scripture reading: I Peter 4:1-11

For most people, Christmas is a happy time of year. Yes, there are those who are lonely, struggling or sad, but for the majority it would seem to be a festive, joyful season. Secular people are happy with their parties and presents. Christians find joy in the Gospel message of peace on earth; good will towards men (Luke 2:14).

Today let us give a thought for the Lord Jesus Himself. He was born to be the Lord’s suffering servant. His task was to carry our sin all the way to the cross, where He died in agony, the righteous for the unrighteous. The Apostle Peter calls this to our attention in our text, where his inspired words declare, “Christ suffered in the flesh.” The holy Son of God took on human flesh in order to suffer for us in the flesh. Now the Apostle calls upon you to live as a Christian, as one who by faith has ceased from the condemnation of sin, by sharing the same way of thinking. We are to live a sacrificial life for Christ, Who suffered so to redeem us.

Let us come to Christ, who suffered as the Lamb of God and let us have in our hearts the desire and intention to follow Him in a life of sacrifice, so that we can sing with the hymn writer Charlotte Elliot:

Just as I am: poor, wretched, blind;
Sight, riches, healing of the mind
Yea all I need, in Thee to find
O Lamb of God, I come, I come.

Suggestions for prayer

Ask the Lord to reveal to you more and more the ways in which you can, in thankfulness, offer to Him your whole self as a sacrifice of praise. Offer a prayer of gratitude to the Saviour, Who suffered so to save you.

Rev. Gregg V. Martin has pastored a total of five congregations in three Canadian provinces since he was ordained in 1977, and also served for more than seven years in Latin America as a missionary. This daily devotional is also available in a print edition you can buy at Nearer to God Devotional.

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