Daily Devotion | Day 276
“Take heed that you do not despise one of these little ones, for I say to you that in heaven their angels always see the face of My Father who is in heaven. For the Son of Man has come to save that which was lost” (Matthew 18:10-11, NKJV).
Jesus is salvation-minded. He wants His followers to have the same mind. To be salvation-minded means to desire and to work for the salvation of souls. An authentic disciple of Christ is one who possesses the same mindset as Christ. Part of this mindset is the attitude we adopt toward those who are yet to be saved. In today’s Scripture, Jesus warns us to be careful how we treat those we think are lost.
Specifically, Jesus calls us to avoid treating the lost with contempt. This is important. When we gain knowledge of God, there’s a temptation to look down on those who aren’t like us. This originates from pride or arrogance. But the ultimate root of this attitude is immaturity and a lack of Christ-mindedness. A true disciple of Christ will treat people how the Savior will treat them. When you treat people with contempt because they’re not saved or because they’re not like you, you discredit your own calling as an ambassador for Christ.
In Matthew 18:10-11, Jesus gives us two reasons we should avoid despising the lost. First, He says these people have angels in heaven who always see the face of the heavenly Father. This means they are important to God, even if their salvation status looks questionable. If God has assigned angels to them, that should tell us that they are valuable in God’s sight. Whoever is important to God should be important to us also. If we treat these people with contempt, we not only offend God, we also offend the angels assigned to them. The last thing we want is to stand before God one day and be required to explain why we treated people with contempt.
Second, Jesus says He has come to save that which was lost. Jesus has a heart for the lost. His mission and passion is to save them. When you despise these people, you’re indirectly despising Jesus who wants to save them. You don’t want to interfere with the Savior’s mission.
If you’re saved, be thankful and pray that others will come to salvation. Remember that it is by grace that you are in Christ, not because you are the most awesome person who ever lived. Let humility guide you. Treat all with kindness and respect. Don’t ridicule people who you think are lost. Respect Jesus who shed His blood for them, and respect their angels, too.
Blessing: May the Lord use you as an instrument to give people the knowledge of salvation. Amen.
For further study: Romans 11:11-36