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(Jesus said) "Do you think that I have come to give peace
 on earth? No, I tell you, but rather division" (Luke 12:51).
Read Luke 12:49-53
The hostility against Jesus grows. His enemies will not
stop until He hangs dead on a cross.
That doesn't seem to fit the words of the Christmas angels:
"Peace on earth" (see Luke 2:14). But the angels weren't
talking about peace among people. They said, "Peace
among those with whom God is pleased." God is only
pleased when we recognize our failings, and then trust
Jesus Christ as our Savior.
The Jewish leaders won't accept that they are misleading
God's people. They cling to their errors and refuse to turn to
their Messiah for forgiveness. Jesus warns His disciples
that hostility will one day turn against them.
Listen to the urgency in His voice: "I came to cast fire on
the earth, and would that it were already kindled! I have a
baptism to be baptized with, and how great is My distress
until it is accomplished!" The fire Jesus wishes to cast is
the cross; His bloody sacrifice divides believers from
unbelievers. The fire of that cross rages across the earth
to this very day.
Jesus asks, "Do you think that I have come to give peace
on earth?" How often do we compromise the truth or stand
in silence trying to live at peace with others? Not so with
Jesus. He refuses to wash His hands if it will support a
satanic lie. He powerfully attacks the deception of the
Pharisees and scribes so they will recognize Satan's lies
and turn to Him for salvation.
Almighty God, there can be no compromise between You
and Satan, truth and error, life and death, heaven and hell.
Help me cling at all costs to the peace believers have with
You, which Jesus Christ won. I pray in His Name. Amen.
Lenten Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries

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