by Pfarrer (Pastor) Hans-Georg Tannhäuser, Acting Director of Secretary Asia Pacific Desk, Evangelisch–Lutherisches Missionswerk Leipzig e. V. in Germany
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… the power of God … has been manifested through the appearing of our Saviour Christ Jesus, who abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel (2 Timothy 1:8b,10).
Read 2 Timothy 1:3–10
A rescuer intervenes in a life-threatening situation. They have only one aim in mind: to preserve life. In doing so, the rescuer enters risky situations to help, often not thinking of themselves.
There are several occupations whose task it is to help and save people in need: paramedics, members of mountain rescue services, lifeguards, accident rescue services, sea rescue and so on.
There are many examples of rescuers, such as firefighters, who risk their own lives to save people from burning houses, often suffering serious injuries themselves. The images and reports from the World Trade Centre are still present – even after more than 20 years – of how New York firefighters saved people’s lives. Without this effort, many more people would have perished. If sea rescuers had ignored or not heard SOS calls, many more people would have been casualties when ships sank. Again, rescuers did not hesitate to intervene.
The first Christians had a secret symbol by which they communicated with each other and encouraged one another during the time of persecution in the Roman Empire: the fish. The word for this fish in Greek is Ichthys, which means Jesus Christ, God’s Son, Saviour. Paul also used this term in his letter to Timothy to describe the meaning of Jesus, as we read in 2 Timothy 1:10.
What is the term ‘Saviour’ all about? Jesus – the Saviour. So much resonates with this word that makes us grateful and happy.
The Son of God did not hesitate to put his own life on the line to enable us to live a full life, his own death taking away the power of death over us humans. Golgotha was the commitment of Jesus the Saviour. Easter morning showed the fruit of that commitment. It was worth it. Christ brought to light an incorruptible being. Christ’s act of salvation was not in vain. In the end, death can no longer harm us. The first Christians knew this during their persecution and we must always be aware of this in the daily challenges of today’s world, no matter on which continent we live. Amen.
Saviour God, we pray for the Leipziger Missionswerk, as they manage the foreign partnerships of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Saxony and the Evangelical Church in Central Germany with Tanzania, Tamil Nadu (India) and Papua New Guinea.
The devotions from this week are taken from LCA International Mission’s 40 Days – A Lenten Devotion and Prayer Guide. They are written by a variety of people who are connected with LCA International Mission. Some are LCANZ members who support International Mission in different ways, and others are from partner churches throughout the region. You can download the full prayer guide here.