Category: General epistles-BibleTrekToday

Avoiding deception!

Scripture reading for November 21st :  Ezekiel 24-26, 1 John 3

Key Scriptures:  1st John 3:7-9  “Little children, let no one deceive you.  Whoever practices righteousness is righteous, as He is righteous.  Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning.  The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil.  No one born of God makes a practice of sinning, for God’s Seed abides in him, and he cannot keep on sinning because he has been born of God.” 

The false teachers attacking the church in John’s last years were teaching that sin did not matter.  John set the record straight.  Sin is of the devil, who sinned from the beginning.  Jesus Christ appeared to destroy the devil’s work of sinning and giving new life to all who would believe through the Word of God abiding within us and the Holy Spirit teaching us.  No true believer can continue in sin.  Don’t be deceived!

Ezekiel 24:14 “I am the Lord.  I have spoken; it shall come to pass; I will do it.  I will not go back; I will not spare; I will not relent; according to your ways and your deeds you will be judged, declares the Lord God.”  

Prayer:  Lord, thank You for Your precious Word and plain truth.  Thank You for the Holy Spirit who teaches me to obey.  Lead me today into application of truth.  Amen.

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Knowing God!

Scripture reading for November 20th:  Ezekiel 20-23, 1st John 2

Key Scriptures:  1st John 2:3-6 “And by this we know that we have come to know Him, if we keep His commandments.  Whoever says “I know Him” but does not keep His commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him, but whoever keeps His Word, in him truly the love of God is perfected.  By this we may know that we are in Him: whoever says he abides in Him ought to walk in the same way in which He walked.”  

What does it mean to truly “know God?”  John, the beloved disciple, says that obedience to His holy Word is the best indication of our knowledge of God and our love for Him.  If we say we ‘know’ God, but live in rebellion to His Word, we are a liar and do not have the truth.  If we truly ‘know’ God through Jesus Christ, we should walk as Christ walked on this earth:  in complete obedience to the Father by depending on the Holy Spirit and God’s grace.

Ezekiel 20:44 “And you shall know that I am the Lord, when I deal with you for My Name’s sake, not according to your evil ways, nor according to your corrupt deeds, O house of Israel, declares the Lord God.” 

Prayer: Lord, thank You for giving me the revelation of Jesus Christ to know You and Your great love and mercy.  Thank You for that mercy instead of dealing with me according to my evil ways.  Help me to live fully for You. Amen.

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Walking in the Light!

Scripture reading for November 19th:  Ezekiel 17-19, 1st John 1

Key Scriptures:  1st John 1:5-7 “This is the message we have heard from Him and proclaim to you, that God is light, and in Him is no darkness at all.  If we say we have fellowship with Him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth.  But if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin.”

Our God is light!  In that Light of His awesome holiness, we see no darkness or shadow.  So if we claim to have fellowship with Him and continue to walk in darkness, we are a liar about knowing Christ.  If we walk in His light, we will have peace with God and this promotes fellowship with other believers.  Our walk will show that the blood of Jesus is having its cleansing power in our life.

Ezekiel 18: 21-22  “But if a wicked person turns away from all his sins that he has committed and keeps all My statutes and does what is just and right, he shall surely live/ he shall not die.  None of the transgressions that he has committed shall be remembered against him; for the righteousness that he has done he shall live.”

Prayer:  Lord Jesus, thank You for Your cleansing blood that empowers me to live a life of fellowship with You and others in Your body.  Keep me from the deception of sin and unbelief.  Amen.

 

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Our Patient Lord!

Scripture reading for November 16th:  Ezekiel 13-16, 2nd Peter 3

Key Scriptures:  2nd Peter 3:8-10  “But do not overlook this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.  The Lord is not slow to fulfill His promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.  But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will pass away with a roar, and the heavenly bodies will be burned up and dissolved, and the earth and the works that are done on it will be exposed.”

How thankful we who dwell on the earth should be for our Lord’s patience!  He has promised destruction of the wicked and a cleansing of the earth by fire but is patiently waiting for all that will to come to repentance.  He would rather bless than judge and destroy.  But His patience will ultimately give way to judgment when the day of the Lord comes.  Fire and retribution are assured for the wicked.

Ezekiel 16:43 “Because you have not remembered the days of your youth, but have enraged Me with all these things, therefore, behold, I have returned your deeds upon your head, declares the Lord God.  Have you not committed lewdness in addition to all your abominations?”

Prayer:  Lord, thank You for Your patience with me and with our lost world.  Help me to share the Good News of Your patience with the lost.  Amen.

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Retribution for the wicked!

Scripture reading for November 15th:  Ezekiel 10-12, 2nd Peter 2

Key Scriptures:  2nd Peter 2:1-3  “But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, denying the Master who bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction.  And many will follow their sensuality, and because of them the way of truth will be blasphemed.  And in their greed they will exploit you with false words.  Their condemnation from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep.”

Peter warned the church about false prophets and their activity.   They would introduce destructive heresies, causing division and strife.  They would promote sensuality through lies and their underlying motives would be greed. Peter promised God’s Word concerning their fate was true!  God would repay.

Ezekiel 11:1-2 “The Spirit lifted me up and brought me to the east gate of the house of the Lord, which faces east.  And behold, at the entrance of the gateway there were twenty-five men. . . .And He said to me, “Son of man, these are the men who devise iniquity and who give wicked counsel to this city; . .”

Prayer:  Lord, help me today to discern truth from error and false teachers from true.  Thank You for the promise of redemption for believers and retribution for the wicked.  Amen.

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The Lamp of God’s Word

Scripture reading for November 14th:  Ezekiel 6-9, 2nd Peter 1

Key Scriptures:  2nd Peter 1:19-21 “And we have the prophetic word more fully confirmed, to which you will do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts, knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone’s own interpretation.  For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.” 

Peter, writing his last letter to the church, encouraged the believers to pay attention to God’s Word.  Holy prophets wrote down the Scriptures as they were directed and guided by the Holy Spirit.  No Scripture comes from man’s own intellect or opinion.  God’s Word is a bright light shining in the darkness of this world to guide His people home.

Ezekiel 10:4-5 “And the glory of the Lord went up from the cherub to the threshold of the house, and the house was filled with the cloud, and the court was filled with the brightness of the glory of the Lord.  And the sound of the wings of the cherubim was heard as far as the outer court, like the voice of God Almighty when He speaks.”  

Prayer:  Lord, thank You for Your Holy Scriptures that shine as light in our dark world.  Thank You for speaking to me and guiding me through this day.  Amen.

 

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Cast those cares!

Scripture reading for November 13th:  Ezekiel 2-5, 1st Peter 5

Key Scriptures: 1st Peter 5:6-9  “Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time He may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on Him, because He cares for you.  Be sober-minded; be watchful.  Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.  Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world.”

Living in faith requires humility.  We who believe must entrust all of our lives to God–the good and the trials of suffering.  We must stay alert to the tricks of the enemy of our souls and resist the fear he tries to stir up.  God cares for you and has promised to exalt you at the proper time.  Cast those cares and resist the devil and his roars!

Ezekiel 2:6 “And you, son of man, be not afraid of them, nor be afraid of their words, though briers and thorns are with you and you sit on scorpions.”  

Prayer:  Lord, thank You for caring for me and the promise of eternal life with You.  Help me to cast all my cares and worries on You today.  Amen.

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Rejoice in Fiery Trials!

Scripture reading for November 12th:  Lamentations 3-5, Ezekiel 1, 1st Peter 4

Key Scriptures: 1st Peter 4:12-14 “Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you.  But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when His glory is revealed.  If you are insulted for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you.”  

Life will have its trials and tests.  We will be called upon to suffer because we bear the Name of Jesus Christ as our Lord.  When we suffer for doing good or as a believer, we can rejoice and be glad.  God will bless us with His Spirit of glory resting upon us to give us grace to endure and the sure hope of eternal reward in God’s presence.

Lamentations 3:22-23 “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; His mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness.”

Prayer:  Lord, thank You for Your faithful mercies and mighty Hand!  Help me to rejoice in suffering and trials, relying on Your steadfast love and new mercies each day.  Amen.

 

 

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Sharing our Hope!

Scripture reading for November 9th:  Jeremiah 51-52, Lamentations 1-2, 1st Peter 3

Key Scriptures: 1st Peter 3:14-17  “But even if you should suffer for for righteousness’ sake, you will be blessed.  Have no fear of them, nor be troubled, but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always  being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect, having a good conscience, so that, when you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ may be put to shame.”  

Suffering for righteousness will bring blessings to the believer.  We are not to be afraid or troubled by those who persecute us for our good behavior and love of Christ.  We should always be ready to share the hope of Jesus with those who are doing the persecuting.  Pray that God opens the doors of their hearts and that we have an opportunity to share the work of our God in saving sinners.

Jeremiah 51:10  “The Lord has brought about our vindication; come let us declare in Zion the work of the Lord our God.”

Prayer:  Lord Jesus, I sanctify You as Lord in my heart today.  Give me opportunity and boldness to share the hope of the Gospel with those who persecute me or are hostile to You and Your Church.  Amen.

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Finding the Way to Zion!

Scripture reading for November 8th:  Jeremiah 48-50, 1st Peter 2

Key Scriptures:  1st Peter 2:21-25 “For to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you might follow in His steps.  He committed no sin, neither was deceit found in His mouth.  When He was reviled, he did not revile in return; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but continued entrusting Himself to Him who judges justly.  He Himself bore our sins in His body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live for righteousness.  By His wounds you have been healed.  For you were straying like sheep, but have now returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.”  

Suffering was a part of Christ’s life on earth.  His suffering set an example of patience and faith for all His followers.  Suffering will be a part of every believer’s life on earth as well.  We must keep our eyes on the Great Shepherd Jesus Christ and allow His healing wounds to steadfast faith.

Jeremiah 50:4-5  “”In those days and in that time, declares the Lord, the people of Israel and the people of Judah shall come together, weeping as they come and they shall seek the Lord their God.  They shall ask the way to Zion, with faces turned toward it, saying, ‘Come, let us join ourselves to the Lord in an everlasting covenant that will never be forgotten.'”

Prayer: Lord Jesus, thank You for showing me and Your followers the Way to Zion!  Thank You for the everlasting covenant through the blood You shed.  By Your stripes I am healed.  Amen.

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