Reflections on the Gospel of MATTHEW, by Chinedu Oranye
Chinedu Oranye’s Reflections on the Gospel of Matthew is a treasure-trove of devotional meditation that deserves wide dissemination.
Moving through the entire gospel almost verse-by-verse, we are invited into 415 separate meditations, each of which deserves to stand alone as a basis for daily reflection and deeper prayer. Like all good devotional literature, we are invited to pause and deeply reflect. We find ourselves loathe to turn the page until we have personally dealt with the issues that are raised. We sense that we must offer the prayers that ensure that we have not listened in vain. Each meditation begins with a direct quotation from Matthew’s gospel, and is then followed by commentary usually not more than 150 words in length. Through the commentary, we continually sense the depth of devotion of the author, yet combined with a humble simplicity that lets us know he is a fellow pilgrim, just as we ourselves. He uses simple, uncomplicated sentences, and refuses to indulge in distracting speculations (e.g., “Not all of destiny can be understood,” he notes). On virtually every page, we are given profound truths couched with an economy of words. No doubt a long list of frameable aphorisms can and perhaps should be drawn out for deeper meditation:
• “Following Jesus does not stop the storms.”
• “Experiencing peace does not mean being idle in the midst of the madness around us.”
• “It is not cowardice to know when to flee.”
• “Do not end your day’s journey with all the hustle and bustle of the day.”
• “I cannot live unless I learn to die.”
• “Satan wants to keep us bound in the poison of everlasting guilt, leading eventually to our destruction.”
• “Jesus is not satisfied with worship that is not accompanied by the surrendered life.”
The examples are virtually endless. Very few pages do not contain repeatable morsels that can with great profit be carried through the day,
along with relevant scriptures and prayers.
No doubt, those who have known Chinedu Oranye personally will be the most inclined to quickly grab this fresh publication for their personal profit. That says much about the character of the author, who is known for his passion for Christ, his love for the lost, and especially his heart for world-wide missions. Yet without hesitation, I commend this devotional book to anyone who wants to draw closer to God and to be challenged to Christ-like living.
REFLECTIONS is primarily a book of God’s dealings and revelations. It is not written from a theological, theoretical, or academic perspective–because that is not the purpose. Its origin is my journey with God, a melting pot experience where God was making and remaking my poor soul. This book is the second in a series of Reflections. Although these were God’s instructions to me, I believe they contain insights, revelations, and clear directives for every pilgrim seeking the heart of God