1 Corinthians 15:35-45 (NRSV)

35 But someone will ask, “How are the dead raised? With what kind of body do they come?”

36 Fool! What you sow does not come to life unless it dies.
37 And as for what you sow, you do not sow the body that is to be, but a bare seed, perhaps of wheat or of some other grain.
38 But God gives it a body as he has chosen, and to each kind of seed its own body.
39 Not all flesh is alike, but there is one flesh for human beings, another for animals, another for birds, and another for fish.
40 There are both heavenly bodies and earthly bodies, but the glory of the heavenly is one thing, and that of the earthly is another.
41 There is one glory of the sun, and another glory of the moon, and another glory of the stars; indeed, star differs from star in glory.
42 So it is with the resurrection of the dead. What is sown is perishable, what is raised is imperishable.
43 It is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory. It is sown in weakness, it is raised in power.
44 It is sown a physical body, it is raised a spiritual body. If there is a physical body, there is also a spiritual body.
45 Thus it is written, “The first man, Adam, became a living being”; the last Adam became a life-giving spirit.

John 12:24 (NRSV)

24 Very truly, I tell you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains just a single grain; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.                            

DEVOTION – David Nababan (Jakarta, Indonesia)

Recently, I bought seeds from a seed store and planted them in pots in my house.  As I was sowing the seeds in pots, this verse from John 12 came in my mind.  I pondered how planting seeds is similar to what Jesus said – that the seed must die, meaning the seed must be buried before it can bear fruit.  These words were fulfilled in Jesus’ life.  He died on the cross and was buried for three days.  Through his death, the Word of God was sown in everyone who believed in him, and those people proclaimed it to other people.  The death of Jesus produced – and continues to produce – much fruit.

Currently the number of Christians is over two billion, or nearly one-third of the world’s population.  All this is the result of Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross.  Whenever I celebrate Communion, I want to reflect on how Jesus willingly sacrificed, and like a little grain of wheat, was buried so that the fruit of faith, love and hope could be produced in countless lives.

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY: Christ died so that we can live.

PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, thank you for dying and rising from the dead so that we can live forever with you.  Amen.

PRAYER FOCUS: CHRISTIAN MARTYRS

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