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Thursday, July 2, 2009

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Genesis 22:1-19
Psalm 115:1-6, 8-9
Matthew 9:1-8

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o, my god!

"When Jesus saw their faith He said to the paralytic, 'Have courage, son, your sins are forgiven.' " —Matthew 9:2

When Jesus forgave the paralytic's sins, He claimed to do something only God can do. Thus, He claimed to be God. The only possible responses to this were to charge Jesus with blasphemy (Mt 9:3) or to worship Him as God.

Jesus repeatedly claimed to be God when He claimed to be the Lord of the Sabbath (Mt 12:8), the Son of God (see Jn 5:18), and the great I AM (Jn 8:24, 28, 58). Jesus is the Word made flesh (Jn 1:14), and the Word is God (Jn 1:1). Jesus is God.

Jesus expects us to believe He is God. Otherwise, we will die in our sins (Jn 8:24). Our faith in Jesus' divinity means not only a mental assent, but assent expressed by worshipping, obeying, and serving Him. Ultimately, our faith in Jesus' divinity must be so real that we will give anything to Jesus and do anything for Him. Abraham exemplified this by even being willing to sacrifice to the Lord his only child, the joy of his life (Gn 22:12). We must be willing to make similar sacrifices. If we believe that Jesus is God, we should be willing to totally abandon our lives to Him.

What does your life indicate about your faith in Jesus' divinity? Will you die in your sins or will you conquer the world because you believe in Jesus as Son of God, that is, God? (1 Jn 5:5)

Prayer:  Jesus, "my Lord and my God!" (Jn 20:28)

Promise:  "In your descendants all the nations of the earth shall find blessing — all this because you obeyed My command." —Gn 22:18

Praise:  When bringing her needs to her Heavenly Father, Linda was often amused by His surprising solutions.

Reference:  (For a related teaching, order our leaflet, Accepting Jesus as Lord, Savior, and God, or on audio AV 43-1 or video V-43.)

Rescript:  †Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, January 5, 2009

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