Destined for Greatness – December 23, 2016

The stone the builders rejected has become the capstone; the LORD has done this, and it is marvelous in our eyes. This is the day the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.
Psalm 118:22-24

Destined for Greatness

Daily Devotion – December 23, 2016

Devotion based on Psalm 118:22-24

See series: Devotions

“He won’t amount to anything.”

Maybe you’ve heard stories of now-famous people who were initially rejected: Bill Gates, Walt Disney, Albert Einstein. They were initially told, “You won’t amount to anything.” It’s ironic to read these accounts in hindsight, knowing how successful and famous they became.

This is one of those notorious rejections. Of Jesus, many concluded: “He won’t amount to anything. Just a baby. Just Joseph’s son. Just a fraud making outrageous claims. Just a man guilty of blasphemy.” The little baby in the manger was destined to be rejected. John writes: “He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him” (John 1:11).

But this little baby in the manger was also on his way to success, to triumph, to victory. The angel told Mary: “You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end” (Luke 1:31-33).

Rejection by the Jewish leadership did nothing to interfere with Jesus’ success. In fact, God used it to propel him to the top. Jesus was rejected and killed on a cross. But this was his path to victory. On the third day, Jesus rose from the dead in power and glory. Now he sits on his heavenly throne ruling heaven and earth.

The devil tells us, “You won’t amount to anything. You’re too sinful. You’re under God’s wrath. You’re too undeserving. You’re too worthless. You deserve to be rejected by God forever.” But Jesus faced rejection for us, not only from people, but from his heavenly Father, in our place. He shared his success with us by grace.

Instead of being rejected by God, we are embraced. Instead of being condemned by God, we are forgiven. Instead of being destined for eternal death, we are assured of eternal life through Jesus. We are destined for greatness, by God’s grace alone.

Dear Jesus, thank you for coming to join our human race. Thank you for facing rejection for me. Thank you for achieving success in your death for sin and your resurrection to new life. Lift me up with you to join you, by grace, in your eternal glory. Amen.

The devotions on Thursdays and Fridays in December lead us in Songs from the Psalms.

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