Our Daily Bread || 3 February 2022 | ODB Devotional Today By Leslie Koh (Our Daily Bread Ministries)
Our Daily Bread || 3 February 2022 | ODB Devotional Message
TOPIC: A Fresh Start
TODAY’S SCRIPTURE: 2 Corinthians 5:16–20
KEY VERSE: If anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! – 2 Corinthians 5:17
Our Daily Bread || 3 February 2022 INSIGHT: Paul’s critics had accused him of being out of his mind (2 Corinthians 5:13). Their insults probably hurt, but he wasn’t surprised. He knew he had a different way of thinking. His idea of good news was a resurrected Messiah King who conquered the world and rescued humanity by allowing Himself to be crucified.
Paul admitted that embracing such thoughts led to a Christlike way of thinking that required living by faith rather than sight (5:7). And for Paul personally, it meant taking risks of love that meant sounding as if he’d lost his mind for the sake of his readers (11:23). Yet he took the chance of boasting of what he’d suffered in the love of Jesus so that his readers could answer those who took pride in “what is seen rather than in what is in the heart” (5:12; see also chs. 10–12).
Our Daily Bread || 3 February 2022 |MESSAGE
Chinese New Year celebrations are observed by Chinese families everywhere. These festivities are tied to the lunar calendar, usually falling somewhere in late January to mid-February. These times for family reunions come with many traditions—some of great significance. Buying and donning new clothes, giving our homes a good cleaning, and paying off outstanding debts remind us we’re putting the past behind and starting the year with a clean slate.
These traditions also remind me of our new life in Christ. No matter who we used to be or what we’ve done, we can put it all behind us. We can stop beating ourselves up over our past and let go of the guilt, knowing we’re completely forgiven because of Jesus’ death on the cross. And we can start afresh, knowing we can rely on the Holy Spirit to daily transform us to be more like Jesus.
That’s why Paul reminds believers “the old has gone, the new is here!” (2 Corinthians 5:17). We too can say this because of the simple but powerful truth: God has reconciled us to Himself through Christ and no longer counts our sins against us (v. 19).
Others around us may not be willing to forget our past wrongdoing, but we can take heart that in God’s eyes we’re no longer condemned (Romans 8:1). As Paul points out, “If God is for us, who can be against us?” (v. 31). Let’s enjoy the fresh start He’s given us through Jesus.
Our Daily Bread || 3 February 2022
REFLECT: How can you remind yourself that you’re fully forgiven because of Jesus’ death on the cross? How can you encourage new believers to start life afresh?
PRAY: Thank You, Jesus, for Your saving work on the cross that reconciles me to God and gives me a new life in You.
Our Daily Bread || 3 February 2022 | ODB Devotional Today Message. Our Daily Bread Ministries (ODB) is a Christian organization founded by Dr. Martin De Haan in 1938. It is based in Grand Rapids, Michigan, with over 600 employees. It produces several devotional publications, including Our Daily Bread