Briefing: Imagine if someone came up to you with the winning lottery ticket and tried to give it to you. You know that this jackpot is worth millions. You throw your hands up and say, “No thanks, I don’t play the lottery”.
Dispatch (Assignment): Missed opportunities. Read Matthew 8:28-34.
On the Street: Have you ever missed an opportunity and later regretted it? I don’t think that in all of history there has ever been a greater missed opportunity than the one told in these verses.
When I was eighteen, I went to FCA (Fellowship of Christian Athletes) summer camp in Estes Park, Colorado. There was a young man in our group that had never received Christ as his Lord and Savior. At the end of the week, I was talking to him about coming to faith in Jesus and our need for Him in our lives. I was so excited about getting to share with him and be a part of a decision that would impact eternity.
I’ll never forget what he told me at the end of the night. He wanted to put off any decision to get involved in a relationship with Jesus until he had the opportunity to party and have fun. I can remember the feeling of shock and confusion that came over me. I didn’t understand it.
One thing I will say, at least he was honest with himself and didn’t make a decision based on guilt. If he had, and it was not a true repentance and confession, he might have gone all his life under the impression that he had given his life to Christ and was saved.
Highlights from this Read: In verse thirty, the people of Gadarenes were Gentiles. We know this because, to the Jews, pigs were unclean animals. This is a highlight for me because we find out later that Jesus has come to save us all, not just the Jewish people.
Whenever I read verse thirty-two I always end up with the same question. When Jesus allowed the demons to enter the pigs, the pigs ran into the lake and died. What happened to the demons after that?
Investigational Resources: Mark 5:1-17 and Luke 8:26-37.
Officer Safety Principle: Have you missed an opportunity to accept Christ? If so, it is not too late.
from The Gospel of Matthew Through the Eyes of a Cop
©by Charles Gilliland. Used by permission.
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