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October 15 – United in ministry

And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works. – Hebrews 10:24

Scripture reading: Hebrews 10:19-25

We have seen that as believers we are called to ministry jointly with other Christians. Christ has organized us in His church for this purpose, that we may encourage each other in doing good, including in worship.

Genuine religion is, of faith, serving the Lord in ministry to others. James says:

Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world (James 1:27).

Galatians 6 reminds us we have a duty to gently restore sinners. We are to be attentive to the needs of others in order to encourage them. We all have a duty to comfort the distressed, show hospitality, gather in the lost sheep and pray for one another. Romans 15 says that we who “are strong ought to bear with the failings of the weak… to please his neighbor for his good, to build him up.” This follows the pattern of Christ Who did not please Himself.

One way to encourage others is to be faithful in worship. We know what it feels like to worship in an empty church. When you decide not to worship, think of how your absence might discourage others.

1 Corinthians 12 reminds us that we all have gifts to use for the upbuilding of the body. As part of the body, we must seek the welfare of the whole body, not just ourselves. This is part of our joint ministry.

Suggestions for prayer

Pray that you are filled with a concern for ministering to the needs of others, particularly those who are straying.

Rev. Calvin Tuininga is the Pastor Emeritus of the Covenant United Reformed Church in Pantego, North Carolina. This daily devotional is also available in a print edition you can buy at Nearer to God Devotional.

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