Today’s WORD (Text)               2 Corinthians 4:3-6

3/ And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. 4/ In their case, the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. 5/ For we do not proclaim ourselves; we proclaim Jesus Christ as Lord and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake. 6/ For it is the God who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

Today’s Witness

Christians profess to have insight into God’s plan in sending Jesus to represent God’s reconciling and redeeming love for the whole world. We are so bold as to believe that God maintains an ongoing concern for the earth and the human family that God created and that God used the ministry of Jesus to reveal God’s heart for humankind and to extend God’s mercy and grace to forgive differences, and to restore unity between God and humankind.  This is good news that was hidden from so many of the ancients prior to Jesus’ ministry.  It is unfortunate when religious traditions that should reveal God end up concealing God due to losing sight of that religion’s purpose.  Paul makes it clear that if we ever lose sight of the purpose of the Christian Gospel, then those who will suffer the most will be those in greatest need of hearing the message and see Christ’ face.  It is for all of them and us that Christ came, died, and was resurrected.

Today’s Invitation

Can you think of any practices or traditions in your local faith community wherein the original intent seems to have diminished or been forgotten?  Are there practices that we have sustained, but it is not clear that many Christians know or understand the origins of the practice or how it was supposed to reveal anything about Christ?

Today’s Prayer

Dear Lord, teach us to truly lift you before our world in all the words we say in your name, and in all the deeds we do in your name.  We pray that our rituals will never become rote and dull practices that loses sight of the tremendous sacrifices you made to restore humankind to the loving God.  Help us to resist ritual practices that have lost their meaning and customs and traditions that have no redemptive value.  Lord, we thank you for the incarnation.  You lived among us and suffered for us, and you proclaimed to us hope and the promise of a better future.  Thank you for the vision of a beloved community here on earth where we can live together as sisters and brothers with all those who proclaim your Name.  Thank you also for the Good News of an eternal kingdom where God reigns above all nations representing every tribe and every language in all generations.  Help us remain faithful in proclaiming your Good News to our world today, in the Name of Jesus, Amen.

The Passionary Intention

Today, I choose to live my life with passion.  Today, I intend to follow Christ more nearly, love more dearly and incarnate God’s grace more clearly by asking myself three questions:

  • Where will I follow Christ today?
  • To whom shall I demonstrate Jesus’ love and justice today?
  • How can I play my part in practicing the presence of Christ, right here, right now?


The Passionary Movement Word and Witness devotion is published weekdays (Monday – Friday).  Dr. Jeffrey Haggray, Executive Director of American Baptist Home Mission Societies, is the author of today’s devotion.

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