What Jesus Did! 'More Than the Show Can Display' — Luke 21:1-4

Monday, November 23, 2015

Jesus saw some rich people putting their gifts for God into the temple money box. Then Jesus saw a poor widow. She put two small copper coins into the box. Jesus said, "I tell you the truth. This poor widow gave only two small coins. But she really gave more than all those rich people. The rich people have plenty; they gave only what they did not need. This woman is very poor. But she gave all she had. And she needed that money to help her live."
— Luke 21:1-4
Illustration of Luke 21:1-4 —  But she really gave more than all those rich people.

Key Thought

If we are not careful, we can easily jump to judgement based on external demonstrations of piety. We can very easily reach the point where we honor those with money because their gifts are large monetarily even though their sacrifices may be small in terms of actual personal sacrifice. God, however, knows our hearts when we give. He knows what we hold back and why. He also knows how much we sacrifice and the attitude which has prompted that sacrifice. All around us are people who are living for the Lord, but who would seldom receive human recognition. Jesus, however, notices. He knows people's hearts as they give. Not one kindness we do in the name of Jesus and for the glory of people and Kingdom will be forgotten. Not one sacrifice for the Savior will go unnoticed. He knows the truth behind our gifts and is blessed when they come from a generous, joyous, and sacrificial heart.

Today's Prayer

Father God, you own everything in the heavens and on the earth; please break me from the sinful habits of greed, worldliness, covetousness, and indiscipline. What your Son has done for me is much greater than any of my fleeting and temporary accomplishments. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Today's Verses in Context

Then Jesus said, "Why do people say that the Christ is the Son of David ? In the book of Psalms, David himself says: 'The Lord (God) said to my Lord (Christ): Sit by me at my right side, and I will put your enemies under your power. ' David calls the Christ 'Lord.' But the Christ is also the son of David. How can both these things be true?" All the people listened to Jesus. Jesus said to his followers, "Be careful of the teachers of the law. They like to walk around wearing clothes that look important. And they love for people to show respect to them in the market places. They love to get the most important seats in the synagogues. And they love to get the most important seats at the feasts. But they are mean to widows and steal their homes. Then they try to make themselves look good by saying long prayers. God will punish these people very much." Jesus saw some rich people putting their gifts for God into the temple money box. Then Jesus saw a poor widow. She put two small copper coins into the box. Jesus said, "I tell you the truth. This poor widow gave only two small coins. But she really gave more than all those rich people. The rich people have plenty; they gave only what they did not need. This woman is very poor. But she gave all she had. And she needed that money to help her live."

Luke 20:41-21:4

Related Scripture Readings

My dear brothers and sisters, you are believers in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ. So don't think that some people are more important than other people. Suppose a person comes into your group. This person is wearing very nice clothes and a gold ring. At the same time a poor person comes in wearing old, dirty clothes. You show special attention to the person wearing nice clothes. You say, "Sit here in this good seat." But you say to the poor person, "Stand there!" or, "Sit on the floor by our feet!" What are you doing? You are making some people more important than others. With evil thoughts you are deciding which person is better. Listen, my dear brothers and sisters! God chose the poor people in the world to be rich with faith. He chose them to receive the kingdom God promised to people who love him.

James 2:1-5

And now, brothers and sisters, we want you to know about the grace (kindness) that God gave the churches (groups of believers) in Macedonia. Those believers have been tested by great troubles. And they are very poor people. But they gave much because of their great joy. I can tell you that they gave as much as they were able. Those believers gave even more than they could afford. They did this freely. No person told them to do this. But they asked us again and again—they begged us to let them share in this service for God's people. And they gave in a way that we did not expect: They gave themselves to the Lord and to us before {they gave their money}. This is what God wants.

2 Corinthians 8:1-5

Remember this: The person who plants little will harvest only a little. But the person who plants much will harvest much. Each person should give what he has decided in his heart to give. A person should not give if it makes him sad. And a person should not give if he thinks he is forced to give. God loves the person who gives happily. And God can give you more blessings than you need. Then you will always have plenty of everything. You will have enough to give to every good work.

2 Corinthians 9:6-8

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About This Devotional

What Jesus Did is a one-year devotional guide through the gospels, using one short passage each day and following the Gospel in consecutive order. Each devotional consists of a passage, reflection and a prayer which opens up the day's scripture and shows how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware.

Easy-to-Read Version copyright © 2001 by World Bible Translation Center. All rights reserved.