Category: Gospels

Take care of your soul!

Scripture reading for October 16th:  Isaiah 53-56, Hebrews 3

Key Scriptures: Hebrews 3:12-14 “Take care, brothers, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God.  But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called “today,” that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.  For we have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original confidence firm to the end.”  

The writer of Hebrews gave a pastoral warning to the members of the church.  The sin of unbelief can take us away from Christ and cause eternal loss.  Unbelief is deceitful and subtle.  We must watch over our own soul and one another.  Confidence in Christ must be maintained.

Isaiah 55:10-11 “Seek the Lord while He may be found; call upon Him while He is near; let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; let him return to the Lord, that He may have compassion on him, and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon.”  

Prayer:  Lord, thank You for Your great mercy and for Your pastoral care for my soul and Your church.  Help me to be careful and watchful, maintaining confidence in Christ’s sacrifice for me.  Amen.

 

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Follow to the Utmost!

Scripture reading for May 3rd:  1st Kings 21-22, 2nd Kings 1-2, John 21

Key Scriptures:  John 21:17-19 “. . .Peter was grieved because He said to him the third time, “Do you love Me?” and he said to Him, “Lord, You know everything; You know that I love You.”  Jesus said to him, “Feed My sheep.  Truly, truly, I say to you, when you were young, you used to dress yourself and walk wherever you wanted, but when you are old, you will stretch out your hands, and another will dress you and carry you where you do not want to go.” (This He said to show by what kind of death he was to glorify God.) And after saying this He said to him.”Follow Me.”  

Peter had denied Jesus three times during the hours following Jesus’ arrest.  Now Jesus would restore His disciple by asking three times if He loved Him.  He also gave Peter insight into how he would die.  In all, Peter was to follow Jesus!

2nd Kings 2:11-13 “And as they still went on and talked, behold, chariots of fire and horses of fire separated the two of them.  And Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven.  And Elisha saw it and he cried, “My father, my father! The chariot of Israel and its horsemen!” And he saw him no more.  Then he took hold of his own clothes and tore them in two pieces.  And he took up the cloak of Elijah. . .”

Prayer:  Father, thank You for restoring Peter and calling him to follow You.  Help me to follow You closely and do Your will until my departure to be with You!  Amen.

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My Lord, My God!

Scripture reading for May 2nd:  1st Kings 18-20, John 20

Key Scriptures: John 20:26-28  “Eight days later, His disciples were inside again, and Thomas was with them.  Although the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you.”  Then He said to Thomas, “Put your fingers here, and see My hands; and put out your hand, and place it in My side.  Do not disbelieve, but believe.”  Thomas answered, “My Lord and My God!””

Jesus appeared on several occasions to the disciples after His resurrection.  Thomas had missed the first of those times, and struggled to believe.  Jesus met him where he was and offered definite proof of touching His wounds in person.  Jesus fulfilled His Word completely.

1st Kings 17:23-24  “And Elijah took the child and brought him down from the upper chamber into the house and delivered him to his mother.  And Elijah said, “See, your son lives.”  And the woman said to Elijah, “Now I know that you are a man of God, and that the Word of the Lord in your mouth is truth.”  

Prayer:  Lord Jesus, thank You for Your patience to meet us each where we are and show us that You are alive and Your Word is truth. You are My Lord and My God. Amen.

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It is Finished

Scripture reading for May 1st:  1st Kings 14-17, John 19

Key Scriptures: John 19:28-30 “After this, Jesus, knowing that all was now finished, said (to fulfill the Scripture),”I thirst.”  A jar full of sour wine stood there, so they put a sponge full of the sour wine on a hyssop branch and held it to His mouth.  When Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, “It is finished.” and He bowed His head and gave up His spirit.”  

Jesus, Son of God, Son of David, was obedient unto death on the cross.  He hung there until He had accomplished everything written in Scripture, and then announced the completion of His task.  He gave His life blood and then His spirit.  His heart was fully committed to the Father.

1st Kings 15:11, 14-15 “And Asa did what was right in the eyes of the Lord, as David his father had done. . . .But the high places were not taken away.  Nevertheless, the heart of Asa was wholly true to the Lord all his days.  And he brought into the house of the Lord the sacred gifts of his father and his own sacred gifts, silver and gold and vessels.”

Prayer:  Father, thank You for sending Jesus to finish the work of salvation and fulfill Scripture.  Help me to please You and fully commit to You all my days. Amen.

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Declare not Deny!

Scripture reading for April 30th:  1st Kings 11-13, John 18

Key Scriptures:  John 18:25-27 “Now Simon Peter was standing and warming himself.  So they said to him, “You also are not one of His disciples, are you?”  He denied it and said “I am not.”  One of the servants of the high priest, a relative of the man whose ear Peter had cut off, asked, “Did I not see you in the garden with Him?”  Peter again denied it, and at once a rooster crowed.”  

Jesus had predicted the denial and falling away of all His disciples. He had also predicted the betrayal by one, Judas.  Even those who walked with Jesus, saw the miracles, heard His teaching and knew Him turned away during Jesus’ final hours.  How we need His grace!

1st Kings 11:3-4 “He (Solomon)had 700 wives and 300 concubines.  And his wives turned away his heart.  For when Solomon was old his wives turned away his heart after other gods, and his heart was not wholly true to the Lord his God, as was the heart of David his father.”  

Prayer:  Lord, thank You for praying for me.  Help me to declare You, not deny You, before men and maintain a fully committed heart, like the heart of Jesus, David’s Son and the Son of God.  Amen.

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The Spirit of Truth and Wisdom

Scripture reading for April 26th:  1st Kings 4-6, John 16

Key Scriptures: John 16:12-14  “I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now.  When the Spirit of Truth comes, He will guide you into all the truth, for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak, and He will declare to you the things that are to come.  He will glorify Me (Jesus), for He will take what is Mine and declare it to you.”  

Jesus explained to His disciples that He would teach them much more about Himself and in fact guide them into all truth.  This would come when the Holy Spirit was poured out on them after His resurrection to the Father.  This would be the Father’s gift.  Each person would have access by the Holy Spirit to God’s wisdom.

1st Kings 4:29-30 Solomon asked God for wisdom —“And God gave Solomon wisdom and understanding beyond measure, and breadth of mind like the sand on the seashore, so that Solomon’s wisdom surpassed the wisdom of all the people of the east and all the wisdom of Egypt.”  

Prayer:  Lord, thank You that You know all things.  Fill me with the Holy Spirit and wisdom that I might live fully in Your will and advance Your kingdom.  Amen.

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Let the Word Abide!

Scripture reading for April 25th:  2nd Samuel 24, 1st Kings 1-3, John 15

Key Scriptures: John 15:5-7  “I am the vine; you are the branches.  Whoever abides in Me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from Me, you can do nothing.  If anyone does not abide in Me he is thrown away like a branch and withers; and the branches are gathered, thrown into the fire, and burned.  If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.” 

 

1st Kings 2:2-3 “I am about to go the way of all the earth.  Be strong, and show yourself a man, and keep the charge of the Lord your God, walking in His ways and keeping His statutes, His commandments, His rules, and His testimonies, as is written in the Law of Moses, that you may prosper in all that you do and wherever you turn.”   

Prayer:  Lord, thank You for the nourishing sap of Your Holy Word.  I choose to stay closely attached, abiding in You and Your Word that You might bring forth fruit from my life.  Amen.

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The Spirit Speaks!

Scripture reading for April 24th:  2nd Samuel 21-23, John 14

Key Scriptures:  2nd Samuel 23:1-4 “Now these are the last words of David:  . . . . The Spirit of the Lord speaks through me; His word is on my tongue.  The God of Israel has spoken; the Rock of Israel has said to me:  When one rules justly over men, ruling in the fear of God, He dawns on them like the morning light, like the sun shining forth on a cloudless morning, like rain that makes grass to sprout from the earth.”  

King David’s last words are in the form of a song.  In this introduction, God is called the “God of Israel” and the “Rock of Israel.”  David declared that he ruled in the “fear of God” and allowed the “Spirit of the Lord” to speak His word through him.  God was like a bright light, like the sun shining forth. and like rain causing the earth to bring forth vegetation.

John 14:6  “Jesus said to him, “I am the way and the truth, and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through Me.  If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also.”  

Prayer:  Lord Jesus, thank You that You revealed Your Father to us.  Fill me with Your Holy Spirit and let Your word and life shine in me.  Water my life with the rain from Heaven!  Amen.

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A friend’s betrayal!

Scripture reading for April 23rd:  2nd Samuel 17-20, John 13

Key Scriptures: John 13:14-18 “If I then, your Lord and Teacher have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet.  For I have given you an example, that you also should do just as I have done to you.  Truly, truly, I say to you, a servant is not greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him.  If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them.  I am not speaking of all of you; I know whom I have chosen. But Scripture will be fulfilled, ‘He who ate My bread has lifted his heel against me.'”

At the Last Supper, Jesus washed the feet of each of His disciples to set an example for them of servant leadership.  He warned them that one of them would betray Him, as Scripture declared.  They each began to examine themselves as to their motives and hearts.  One would betray and take his own life.

2nd Samuel 17:23  “When Ahithophel (betrayer of King David)  saw that his counsel was not followed, he saddled his donkey and went off home to his own city.  He set his house in order and hanged himself, and he died and was buried in the tomb of his fathers.”   

Prayer:  Lord Jesus, help me to examine my heart today and repent of anything that would betray You.  May I follow Your example of serving and washing the feet of other followers.  Amen.

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Keeping God’s Word!

Scripture reading for April 20th:  2nd Samuel 14-16, John 12

Key Scriptures:  John 12:46-48  “I have come into the world as light, so that whoever believes in Me may not remain in darkness.  If anyone hears My words and does not keep them, I do not judge him; for I did not come to judge the world but to save the world.  The one who rejects Me and does not receive My words has a judge; the word that I have spoken will judge him on the last day.”  

Jesus made it clear to His followers that He had a mission of salvation.  He came as the Light of the world, bringing revelation of the will and word of God.  The word of God that He spoke would save those that believed and bring judgment on those who rejected Him and His word.

2nd Samuel 15:21 “But Ittai answered the king, “As the Lord lives, and as my lord the king lives, wherever my lord the king shall be, whether for death or for life, there also will your servant be.”

Prayer:  Lord, thank You for the light of revelation.  I believe Your word!  Help me to cling to You and follow Your leading today. Amen.

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