Daily Topic for March 01, 2012
John’s gospel begins with the beginning and takes us back to the first chapter of Genesis where God spoke the world into existence. We are thus reminded that Jesus is above creation, and that he is God, the very same person through whom the universe was made (Col 1:16). Why would John begin his gospel this way? As we read on, it becomes evident that John sees Jesus as the savior of the entire world—He is not just the Jewish messiah, but he is the world’s messiah. As our Creator, Jesus is exclusively qualified to be our Savior, Lord, and King. This places the uniqueness of Christ’s nature, work and mission in a category that has no equal.
Pray that this generation of believers will not lose sight of the all-surpassing greatness of our mission to proclaim Jesus Christ as the messiah for all peoples.
As Geni and Soni were growing up in the tiny Balkan country of Albania, there was a Communist Stalinist style dictator named Hoxha who imprisoned or executed believers. All practice and talk of religion was banned. In 1967 this dictator declared Albania a totally atheistic country. It was the first nation in history to do so. Albania was known in the 1980s as the most closed country in the world.
In the 1930s until WWII there had been missionaries and Albanian believers, but after Hoxha died in 1985, only five older Christian men could be found. All of them had endured severe persecution.
Because of the strictness in the country, neither Geni (whose family had been Catholic before the regime) nor Soni (from a Muslim family background) had heard anything about the importance of faith or a God who loved them.
In 1991 the country was beginning to open up, and the first evangelistic campaign was held in the capital. Geni was a part of that campaign, accepted Christ, and began to be discipled by some of the first Western missionaries. Soni heard about the Lord in 1993 when she went to an English class sponsored by missionaries in her city.
Geni and Soni met at Discipleship Training School in 1995 and were drawn together as they discovered their desire to work in a Muslim country to bring the good news of Christ.
Praise God for calling on the lives of young believers, and pray for them to hear and be obedient to that call.