sep/oct2011 ‘Sticks and stones may break my bones but names will never hurt me’ has to be one of the most stupid phrases I know! It’s nonsense to believe that names can’t hurt us. If someone calls me ‘stupid’, I start to believe I am. But when I’m called ‘friend’ or ‘beautiful’ (yes, it has happened!), I instantly feel differently about myself. We’re going to be thinking about some of the names of Jesus in this YP’s. ‘Jesus’ means ‘Saviour’ – not a bad place to start! And Jesus was also called Teacher, King, Friend, Lord … His Father was God, who bestowed on Him so many amazing names, that you can’t help but see how much God loved Him. And the jaw-dropping truth is that God also loves us – and you and I are His children too! Now that’s an encouragement for me – especially on those days when people say things that make me feel anything but valued and loved. Alongside this we’ll be looking at how we can ‘Get Up and Glow’ for God, bringing the lifetransforming good news to people who don’t yet know Jesus, and we’ll be peeking inside the ark at the life of Noah. So, I pray this issue of YP’s will in itself be ‘lifetransforming’ for you, as you read page after page about the God who loves you to bits ...
l a i r o t i ed
old Testament Genesis Exodus Leviticus Numbers Deuteronomy Joshua Judges Ruth 1 Samuel 2 Samuel 1 Kings 2 Kings 1 Chronicles
2 Chronicles Ezra Nehemiah Esther Job Psalms Proverbs Ecclesiastes Song of Songs Isaiah Jeremiah Lamentations Ezekiel
Daniel Hosea Joel Amos Obadiah Jonah Micah Nahum Habakkuk Zephaniah Haggai Zechariah Malachi
new Testament Matthew Mark Luke John Acts Romans 1 Corinthians 2 Corinthians Galatians
Ephesians Philippians Colossians 1 Thessalonians 2 Thessalonians 1 Timothy 2 Timothy Titus Philemon
Hebrews James 1 Peter 2 Peter 1 John 2 John 3 John Jude Revelation
OTHER CWR DAILY BIBLE-READING NOTES: For young people Pens for 3- to 6-year-olds Topz for 7- to 11-year-olds Mettle for 14- to 18-year-olds
For adults Every Day with Jesus Inspiring Women Every Day Lucas on Life Every Day Cover to Cover Every Day
Young People’s Every Day with Jesus (YP’s) is published by CWR, Waverley Abbey House, Waverley Lane, Farnham, Surrey, GU9 8EP, UK © CWR, 2011. All rights reserved. This ‘light up the night, let His name burn bright, rescued from a watery plight’ issue would never have happened if it wasn’t for … Text: Paul Thompson @ Digital Dimensions • Senior Editor: Lynette Brooks • Concept development, editing, design and production by CWR • Photographs: Getty - D. Sharon Pruitt Pink Sherbet Photography (cover) • Printed in England by Linney Print • The text in YP’s is republished every four years, working to a rolling four-year programme for 11- to 15-year-olds.
A PERSON CAN BE CALLED ‘ROBERT’ BY HIS PARENTS, ‘BOB’ BY HIS FRIENDS, ‘HONEY-BUNCH’ BY HIS GRANDMOTHER, ‘A RIGHT PAIN’ BY HIS SCHOOLTEACHER AND ‘WING NUT’ BY THOSE WHO NOTICE HE HAS BIG EARS. DIFFERENT PEOPLE SEE US IN DIFFERENT WAYS AND NOTICE DIFFERENT THINGS ABOUT US. LET’S SEE WHAT NAMES JESUS WAS GIVEN SO WE CAN FIND OUT MORE ABOUT HIM.
1st September matthew 1:18–25 ‘... give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.’ Matthew 1:21
hairy expensi ve
Joseph and Mary didn’t have to thumb through a book called Name Your Baby to come up with their favourite name for a boy or girl. Firstly, they knew Mary’s child would be a boy and, secondly, He had been given a name already. In Jewish tradition the father named his offspring. And here we get a clue why Joseph was bypassed. He wasn’t the father – God was. So it was God who named His Son, and what a great name He chose – Jesus! Everyone knew what that name meant, it was a popular name already. Jesus meant – ‘Saviour’. More than that, God spelt out what His Son had come to deliver people from – sin! Jesus wasn’t the only name God came up with in heaven. He also chose the name Immanuel. Six hundred years before Jesus was born God let Isaiah in on the secret (Isa. 7:14). Immanuel means ‘God with us’. God’s Son had come to live and to rub shoulders with us.
ENGAGE Jesus is God with you – yes, little ol’ you. And Jesus promises that He will always be with you (Matt. 28:20). You may feel lonely but you’re never alone. Jesus isn’t waiting for you to meet Him on His territory, He comes to your neighbourhood, your home, your school, your life, to be with you! Why not give Him the welcome He deserves? PRAY Jesus, thank You that You are always with me, wherever I am. Help me to let You be part of my daily choices and challenge me about how I live. Amen.
2nd September 2 thessalonians
1 timothy 2:1–6 ‘... the man Christ Jesus ...’ 1 Timothy 2:5
JESUS IS GOD. HE IS HOLY, LOVING, KIND – ALL THAT GOD IS. BUT JESUS WAS ALSO HUMAN – FLESH AND BLOOD – JUST AS WE ARE. SO JESUS IS UNIQUE, BOTH GOD AND MAN. BUT WHY DID GOD BOTHER TO GET KITTED OUT AS A HUMAN? Jesus restricted Himself to living in a human body for just over 30 years. He experienced growing up and being a young person. So when you face teen horrors like spots or need space to be by yourself, He knows where you are at. As a man Jesus also experienced hunger, thirst, tiredness and stress. So when you get cheesed off, bawl people out or become apathetic, He understands what is triggering your behaviour. It was as a man that Jesus faced temptation, all the temptations you and I will ever face. He knows the
pressure we are sometimes under to ditch God’s ways for our selfish pleasures. And He leaves us no excuse for caving in to temptation, for in the same situations we face He resisted, not as God but as a human being using God’s Word and asking for God’s help. In 1 Timothy 2:5 Jesus is described as ‘the man’ – not just a man but ‘the man’. The greatest most gentle and most loving Friend you can possibly have. ENGAGE The Man Christ Jesus is both man and God. Why? His job is to bridge the gap between man and God. We have a Friend who understands first hand what we experience in life yet is holy, awesome and almighty. Honour Jesus with great respect but don’t feel you should keep your distance. He really wants you to get to know Him as your best Friend.
3rd September ACTS
JOHN 8:12–19 ‘I am the light of the world.’ John 8:12
CAN YOU THINK OF A FIVE-LETTER WORD YOU COULD USE INSTEAD OF THE WORD ‘JESUS’ THAT SHOWS US WHAT HE IS LIKE AND WHAT HE HAS DONE FOR US? JESUS DID AND JOHN USED IT 33 TIMES IN HIS GOSPEL. LET HIM SHED SOME LIGHT ON THE PUZZLE. In the days of Moses, God lit up the way to the promised land with a pillar of fire. This dramatic event was celebrated at the Feast of Tabernacles when four large bowls in the Temple courtyard were filled with oil. Priests took the kit they had been wearing all year and lit them as wicks. Everyone in Jerusalem could see the flames floodlighting the Temple and there was music and dancing beneath the torches. It was against this vivid backdrop that Jesus announced He was the Light of the world. He was the pillar of fire leading people of all nationalities to God. Light was also associated with freedom. To celebrate their victory over Antiochus Epiphanes, a Syrian dictator who tried to stop them worshipping God in 164BC, the Jews held an annual festival of lights. Candles and torches were lit in every home and kept burning for eight days. In the evenings they sang and jived to music. Jesus, our Light, came to win our freedom from the darkness of living without God. ENGAGE Peter described becoming a Christian as coming ‘out of darkness into his wonderful light’ (1 Pet. 2:9). To be in the light is to be in a place of great freedom and joy. Thank Jesus for lighting up your life.
PRAY Thank You, Jesus, for being the Way to God. Please become a bigger part in my way of life. Amen.
ENGAGE In his farewell concert Frank Sinatra sang ‘I did it my way’, which sums up most people’s approach to life. But the Christian needs to live to the tune of doing it God’s way.
There was also another meaning to this name. Jews often referred to the first five books of the Bible, the Law, as ‘the Way’. It was their way of life. In saying that He was ‘the Way’ Jesus was announcing that the old way of making peace with God through repeated sacrifices was over. Instead He was about to die to open up a new way – ‘the Way’ for anyone to get right with God. The early Christians shouted about this so much that they were nicknamed the people of ‘the Way’. Jesus was their Way to God and their Way of life.
You probably know several ways to travel to another place. In Jesus’ day there was only one safe route between places – ‘the way’. So when Jesus called Himself ‘the way’ He was stating He was the only way – to God.
In Moses’ day God used a cloud by day and a fire at night to show the Israelites ‘the way’ (Deut. 1:33). From then on people spoke about following God’s ‘way’. Psalmists sang songs asking God to show them His ‘way’. And then Jesus arrived to make a way out statement ...
4th September sunday ACTS
‘I am the way ...’ John 14:6
5th September REVELATION 1:8–18 ‘I am the Alpha and the Omega …’ Revelation 1:8
If you want to find your way around London or another major city centre, you can buy an A–Z with street maps in it. When John was shown a vision of heaven he saw an A & Z. No, not a guidebook to heaven, but a most awesome Person. Our alphabet starts with the letter ‘A’ and ends with the letter ‘Z’. The New Testament was written in the Greek language and the Greek alphabet starts with ‘Alpha’ and ends with ‘Omega’. Jesus used these letters to point out that He is the first and last. He is the first because He was there at the beginning of all things, creating our world and everything in it. He is the last because He is in control of all events in the future and will reign with God over a new heaven and earth (Rev. 21– 22). He is our ‘A’ because Jesus is with us from the beginning of our lives, even knowing us before we were born (Psa. 139:13–16). He is our ‘Z’ because, if we believe in Him, when we die we will go to live with Him. With Jesus as our A–Z we need never feel lost because He can show us the right way ahead.
ENGAGE Jesus is our ‘A’ and ‘Z’ – our past, present and future are in His hands. So there is no need to worry about the future – Jesus is already there. Are you wound up about anything you have to do today, tomorrow or in the future? Talk it through with Jesus your ‘Z’.
6th September luke
JOHN 14:6; 18:33–38 ‘I am ... the truth ...’ John 14:6
When people exaggerate we ask them to ‘Get real’. When they view things through rose-tinted spectacles we say, ‘You don’t live in the real world’. People who are honest and tell it like it is are ‘real’ with themselves and others. Was Jesus ‘real’ with people? Pilate asked Jesus an interesting question: ‘What is truth?’ Truth means nothing concealed. It is possible to say something that is true without telling the truth – you can reveal some facts but not others to mislead people. This is why in a court of law you are required to tell ‘the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth’.
Truth carries a label marked 100% genuine. When Jesus said, ‘I am the truth’, He could equally have said ‘I am real’. Jesus didn’t tell lies or try to con people. He didn’t make Himself out to be anything He wasn’t. He could easily have denied being a King to Pilate and avoided crucifixion, but Jesus was real. Jesus didn’t just tell the truth, He IS the truth. It is not in His character to mislead, deceive or lie. He is 100% genuine, trustworthy, straight and reliable. A Friend who cannot and will not let you down.
ENGAGE Truth is another five-letter word you can substitute for Jesus. Jesus is Truth and Truth is Jesus. They are inseparable. The wow factor is that we can rely on all that Jesus says. His truth really does set us free (John 8:32). If you’ve not been the genuine article for God lately, own up to it. PRAY Jesus, help me to be real today in all situations and at all times, not shying away from who I know You to be. Amen.
7th September ACTS
JOHN 10:1–9 ‘I tell you the truth, I am the gate for the sheep.’ John 10:7
MANY OF THOSE WHO LISTENED TO JESUS OWNED SHEEP OR WERE HIRED TO LOOK AFTER FLOCKS. SO, JESUS HOMED IN ON THEIR EXPERIENCE TO HELP THEM UNDERSTAND WHO HE IS. There was one way in or out of a sheepfold. A shepherd stood by the gate to count his sheep into the fold. Sick or wounded sheep would be singled out for treatment and those not belonging to him turned away. Although there was a gate sealing the fold, many shepherds slept across the entrance acting as a ‘living door’ to protect their sheep.
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Thieves or wild animals hoping for a cheap meal had the choice of ram-raiding the high stone walls or risking a climb over the thorny branches placed on the top. Jesus didn’t say He was one of many ways to God but ‘the gate’, the only entrance to the kingdom of heaven. You cannot be forgiven and enter the security of God’s family without meeting Him first (Acts 4:12).
ENGAGE The sheepfold is not meant to be a holy huddle for Christian mutton heads. In verse 9 Jesus says His sheep will go ‘in and out’. We are free to ‘go out’ into the world and live for Him there. ‘Just going out ...’ – what are the dangers? And what are the opportunities to serve God? Talk about this question with others at your church. And when you ‘go out’ anywhere, ask Jesus to lead you to the places He wants you to be and the people He wants you to meet.
JOHN 11:17–45 ‘I am the resurrection ...’ John 11:25
One of Jesus’ best friends was dead. To make matters worse Jesus had arrived late for the funeral. The dead man’s relatives were distraught. Was this the best time for Jesus to announce a new name? It was, as it happens ... Jesus’ sense of timing is absolutely perfect.
Jesus’ promise is that all who believe in Him will live even though they die. In other words, when Christians die that is not the end. Jesus is there to see us ‘stand up again’ in heaven with a new body and eternal life. Can He do that? Lazarus knows He can. He’s probably pogoing around heaven with joy at this very moment.
Poor Martha was overcome with grief when her brother Lazarus died. When Jesus arrived He introduced Himself as ‘the resurrection and the life’. Resurrection means ‘to stand up again’. Was Jesus claiming He could bring Lazarus to life and up on his pegs again? Yes! Uniquely, Jesus has power over death. And He demonstrated it by commanding Lazarus to walk out of the tomb. Lazarus, his feet still wrapped together with burial cloths, bounded out like a bandaged pogo stick. Jesus had given him new life!
ENGAGE The greatest proof that Jesus is ‘the resurrection’ is the fact He rose from the dead. His resurrection is the greatest event in world history. It’s evidence that He can carry out His promise to give new life to all those who believe in Him. Martha believed Jesus was the resurrection before she saw Lazarus alive. Do you believe you will stand before Jesus in heaven one day? What ought you to tell Him now?