Category: Pauline epistles–BibleTrekToday
Scripture reading for December 14th: Philemon, Hebrews 1-4
Key Scriptures: Hebrews 1:8-9 “But about the Son He says, “Your throne, O God, will last for ever and ever, and righteousness will be the scepter of Your kingdom. You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness; therefore God, Your God, has set You above Your companions by anointing You with the oil of joy.“ (a quote from Psalm 45:6-7)
The writer to the Hebrews pointed out that God spoke prophetically through the sons of Korah concerning Jesus Christ. Christ would be God’s Son and rule on an eternal throne. Righteousness would be the scepter of His kingdom and rule. The Son, like God the Father, loved righteousness and hated wickedness. Because of this integrity of character, God anointed Jesus with the oil of joy! Hallelujah for a joy-anointed Savior who anoints His people with the Holy Spirit and joy!
Rejoicing in the anointed Jesus: “The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on Me, because the Lord has anointed Me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent Me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn and provide for those who grieve in Zion–to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, . .” (Isaiah 61:1-3)
Key Scriptures for December 13th: 2nd Timothy 4, Titus 1-3
Key Scriptures: Titus 3:4-7 “But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, He saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of His mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by His grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life.”
Paul, writing to Titus, emphasized the basic truth of salvation by grace through faith. Because of Jesus Christ, our Savior, we have obtained mercy, washing from sin and renewal by the Holy Spirit in new birth. We stand justified before a Holy God because of what He did for us, not anything we did or can do for Him. We not rejoice in our promised inheritance in God’s household–eternal life! What amazing hope we eagerly expect!
Rejoicing in hope and a future: “”For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. The you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. You will seek Me and find Me when you seek Me with all your heart.”” (Jeremiah 29:11-13)
Scripture reading for December 12th: 1st Timothy 5-6, 2nd Timothy 1-3
Key Scriptures: 2nd Timothy 3:14-16 “But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you learned it, and how from infancy you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.”
Paul encouraged Timothy, a young preacher, to continue in the truth of God’s word. He was taught the Word by those who were eye-witnesses of Jesus Christ and wise because they knew the Word. He had also had the Old Testament Scriptures taught to him in his earliest years by his mother and grandmother. By doing this, he would be completely equipped for the good work of ministry!
Thankful for the food of God’s Word: “And He said to me, “Son of man, eat what is before you, eat this scroll; then go and speak to the House of Israel.” So I opened my mouth, and He gave me the scroll to eat.” (Ezekiel 3:1-2)
Scripture reading for December 8th: 1st Thessalonians 4-5, 2nd Thessalonians 1-3
Key Scriptures: 2nd Thessalonians 2:1-4 “Concerning the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered to Him, we ask you brothers, not to become easily unsettled or alarmed by some prophecy, report or letter supposed to have come from us, saying that the day of the Lord has already come. Don’t let anyone deceive you in any way, for that day will not come, until the rebellion occurs and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the man doomed to destruction. He will oppose and will exalt himself over everything that is called god or is worshiped, so that he sets himself up in God’s temple, proclaiming himself to be God.”
Paul was concerned about false teachers who were leading the church astray concerning the gathering of Christ’s people at His return. He told them to check out all messages by the Word. That day would not come until a great rebellion occurs and the man of lawlessness is revealed. He would exalt himself above God and set himself up as God in the Temple of God. These events were declared in Daniel’s prophesy.
Thankful for prophetic warning: “The ten horns are ten kings who will come from this kingdom. After them another king will arise, different from the earlier ones; he will subdue three kings. He will speak against the Most High and oppress the saints and try to change the set times and the laws. ” (Daniel 7:24-25)
Scripture reading for December 7th: Colossians 4, 1st Thessalonians 1-3
Key Scriptures: 1st Thessalonians 3:12-13 “May the Lord make your love increase and overflow for each other and for everyone else, just as ours does for you. May He strengthen your hearts so that you will be blameless and holy in the presence of our God and Father when our Lord Jesus comes with all His holy ones.”
Paul desired greatly to come and minister again to the Thessalonians. He had asked God to make a way, and for God to increase their love for each other through His indwelling presence. Paul wanted them to be blameless and holy when Jesus Christ returned to earth with all His holy ones to take His Bride away! This prayer for them would inspire them to seek God for His righteousness and to live holy lives in expectancy!
Joyful in hope at Christ’s return: “Yes, Lord, walking in the way of Your laws, we wait for You; Your Name and renown are the desire of our hearts. My soul yearns for you in the night; in the morning my spirit longs for you. When your judgments come upon the earth, the people of the world learn righteousness.” (Isaiah 26:8-9)
Scripture reading for December 6th: Philippians 3-4, Colossians 1-3
Key Scriptures: Colossians 3:15-17 “Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.”
Paul, writing to the Colossians, reminded this church family of their need to rest in the peace of their Savior, Jesus. This rest would result in a thankful spirit and as the Word of Christ richly indwelt them, they would sing songs, hymns and spiritual songs to God! Their whole life would be a concert of thankful worship through meditation on God’s Word! This would resound into eternity as we live with Christ forever!
Rejoicing in God’s Word: “I have hidden Your Word in my heart that I might not sin against You.” (Psalm 119:11) “Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth. Worship the Lord with gladness; come before Him with joyful songs. . . Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise; give thanks to Him and praise His Name.” (Psalm 100:1-2,4)
FScripture reading for December 5th: Ephesians 4-6, Philippians 1-2
Key Scriptures: Ephesians 5:11-16 “Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them. For it is shameful even to mention what the disobedient do in secret. But everything exposed by the light becomes visible, for it is light that makes everything visible. This is why it is said: “Wake up, O sleeper, rise from the dead; and Christ will shine on you.” Be very careful, then, how you live–not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.”
But for God’s grace through Jesus Christ, we would be hopelessly lost in the darkness of sin and the shame of our disobedience. But thanks be to God that through Jesus Christ He wakes those who believe in Him from death and the grave and brings us into His marvelous light! We are awake to Christ, walking in His wisdom and exposing evil in the days before He comes again for us!
Rejoicing in His Light: “Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord rises upon you. See, darkness covers the earth and thick darkness is over the peoples, but the Lord rises upon you and His glory appears over you.” (Isaiah 60:1-2)
Scripture reading for December 4th: Galatians 5-6, Ephesians 1-3
Key Scriptures: Ephesians 1:13-14 “And you also were included in Christ when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation. Having believed, you were marked in Him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession–to the praise of His glory.”
The gospel is powerful and effective in bringing salvation. A preacher preaches the word of truth and God gives grace to repent, believe and receive the promise of eternal life. This salvation includes a mark of God’s ownership, the gift of the Father–the precious Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is a deposit of God’s grace and glory that marks us a belonging to God as a member of His family and declared righteous. We are saved and await the full redemption at Christ’s return!
Thankful for promised inheritance: “The days of the blameless are known to the Lord, and their inheritance will endure forever.” (Psalm 37:18) Amen!
Scripture reading for December 1st: Galatians 1-4
Key Scriptures: Galatians 3:10-13 “All who rely on observing the law are under a curse, for it is written: “Cursed is everyone who does not continue to do everything written in the Book of the Law.” Clearly no one is justified before God by the law, because, “The righteous will live by faith.” The law is not based on faith; on the contrary, “The man who does these things will live by them.” Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us, for it is written: “Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree.”
The Jews had relied on the Law of God for years and sought to obey but failed again and again. Paul explained the reason why: “All who rely on observing the law are under a curse.” This is because the law can only reveal sin, it can not cure it. Righteousness comes by faith in Jesus Christ and His perfect obedience of the Law and then offering Himself to be hung on a cross. His act of loving obedience redeemed sinners from the curse of trying to obey the law!
Rejoicing in Christ’s Redemption: “Cursed is the man who does not uphold the words of this lay by carrying them out.” Then all the people shall say, “Amen!” (Deuteronomy 27:26) “Be sure to bury him that same day, because anyone who is hung on a tree is under God’s curse.” (Deuteronomy 21:23)