Following God’s Guidance


Daily Bible Reading – Numbers 8,9; Acts 28

Today’s Key Passage - Numbers 9:15-23

 

If you are a follower of Christ, at some point in your life, you have most likely asked the following question – “What is God’s will for me?”  You may have wondered, “How can I know what God wants me to do in this situation?”  We all want to please God and we want to make sure we are following his direction, but sometimes it can be difficult to know what direction that might be.  It would be nice to have a cloud to follow during the day and fire to follow at night, as that would leave little room for our own interpretation, but following God usually does not work that way for us.  During times of frustration when we cannot seem to figure out which direction to go or how to proceed, we may even start to ask ourselves another question – “Does God still guide?”

Whether we know it or not; whether we believe it or not; whether we can understand it or not – God will be our guide.  Psalm 48:14 says, “For this God is our God for ever and ever; he will be our guide even to the end.”  There are many places in the Bible when we can see this, but one of the best places is the story of the cloud and the fire.  We saw how God used the pillar of cloud and fire in Exodus to get the Israelites safely out of Egypt, and we see it again in today’s key passage in Numbers.  I think there are four lessons we can learn from it about how God leads his people.

The first lesson is that God’s guidance is revealed one step at a time.  When the cloud lifted, the Israelites would go.  When it moved, they would follow.  When it stopped, they would stop.  Sometimes they would stay in one place overnight and move again and other times they would stay in one place for a long time, but they always had to follow God on a day-to-day basis.  One of the biggest problems we might have with discovering God’s will for us is that we want to see the whole picture.  We want to know right now where God is leading us and which direction He is going to take us to get us there.  Most of the time, however, even though God is fully aware of the complete plan He has for our lives, He does not simply provide us with that blueprint up front.  He provides us a step today, and another step tomorrow until eventually we get to where He wants us to go.

The second lesson is that we must follow God’s guidance even when we do not understand it.  If we truly want to follow God’s will for us, we have to move when He says to move and stay when He says to stay.  In Numbers 9, we see that the cloud would often move suddenly and stop suddenly with seemingly no explanation or reason.  Again, sometimes they would be in one place for a long time, and other times they would stop and set up camp only to find that they were heading out again the next morning.  There are times in our lives when we think we really want to move on to something new, but God may be telling us to stay where we are.  Likewise, there are times when we are comfortable and want to stay right where we are, but God is telling us to move on.  God demands our obedience.  When He says move, we move.  When He says stay, we stay.  We do this and we follow Him where He is leading because we love Him, even when we do not understand.

The third lesson we learn is that God’s methods for guiding us may change over time.  During the day, the Israelites saw a cloud.  That is what they needed to see to follow God.  At night, it would have been difficult for them to see a cloud so instead God led them with a pillar of fire.  While God never changed his guidance, He did change the method that He used to provide that guidance.  We often get wrapped up in thinking that God only leads people in one way.  We hear a story from a friend or a pastor about how God led them in a dream and we expect God to lead us in a dream, but God does not necessarily work that way.  Just because He uses one method to guide one person does not mean He will use that same method to guide you.  Maybe He will guide us in a dream or a vision, but He might also guide us through the Bible, advice from other believers, or inner convictions.  Sometimes He might speak to us with a loud voice that is easy to hear, and other times it might be a whisper.  The point is that God will lead you in exactly the way you need to be led.

The last lesson we learn from Numbers 9 is that God guides us as we stay close to Him.  The cloud that led the Israelites was not simply a symbol – the cloud was God’s presence.  When the cloud moved, if the people did not follow along with it they would be separated from God.  Knowing the will of God is not a question of where we should go or what we should do.  Those are important questions, but they are not the primary question.  The primary question is this: Are you willing to follow God wherever He leads you?  When we ask God what we should do, His response to us is “stay close to me”.  When we ask God where we should go, His response to us is “follow me”.  At the end of the passage in Numbers 9, we see this sentence, “At the LORD’s command they encamped, and at the LORD’s command they set out.” If we resolve to do the same thing, God will guide us.  If God says stop, we will stop.  If God says move, we will move.  The secret to knowing God’s will for your life is really the secret of knowing God.  The better we know Him and the closer we get to Him, the clearer His guidance will be for us.  When we seek to know Him, to follow Him, and to put Him first in everything we do, all of our guidance questions will be answered.  God is willing to guide you if you are willing to follow Him.

During your Bible reading today, what “key passages” stood out to you?  Leave a comment below to share what God is showing you about His Word today.

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Taking Risks


Daily Bible Reading – Numbers 7; Psalm 23; Acts 27

Today’s Key Passage - Acts 27:9-25

 

The only way captains could navigate a ship in ancient times was by looking at the stars.  When the sky was overcast, sailing became very dangerous if not impossible.  The stormy season began in September, so by November, sailing was almost unheard of in those days.  The event in our key passage today occurred in October after the Day of Atonement, so they were right in the middle of the “questionable” time to be sailing.  Paul warned the men that sailing was going to be dangerous, and told them that, “[the] voyage is going to be disastrous and bring great loss to ship and cargo, and to our own lives also.”  The pilot and the owner of the ship, however, wanted to sail and the centurion chose to listen to that advice instead of listening to Paul.  They decided to take a risk and set sail despite Paul’s warnings and despite the fact that they knew this time of year would make sailing dangerous.  This decision proved to be disastrous as a violent storm hit and put the entire crew in grave danger.  Paul then told the crew that they had a choice to make – they could continue down their destructive path of doing things their own way or they could listen to Paul’s advice and start putting their faith in God.  If not for the grace and mercy of God, the entire ship and its crew would have surely been destroyed.

When we choose to sin against God, we also take a risk.  We know about the warnings – we can read them every day in His Holy Scriptures.  We know what God tells us to do and how He tells us to live our lives because repeatedly in the Bible we can see God’s message to us as clearly as Paul’s message was to the ship’s pilot.  Sometimes, though, even given all of God’s warnings, we still choose to depart from his leading and go our own way.  In those moments when we choose to ignore God’s directions, we are taking a huge risk.  We risk our health – sometimes our physical health, and other times our emotional, spiritual, or relational health.  When we choose to disobey God, we put ourselves and others in harm’s way.  It should not surprise us, then, when storms come up and rage against us in those times when we have chosen to disregard all the signs and set sail down our own path of destruction.  Like the men on the boat, we have a choice to make.  We can continue to go our own way and disregard God, assuring our destruction, or we can start listening to His warnings and put our faith and trust in Him.  We can come to realize that God’s instructions for our lives are there for a reason, and that He only has our own best interests at heart.  When we decide to start listening to God, His great mercy and grace will save us from destruction.

During your Bible reading today, what “key passages” stood out to you?  Leave a comment below to share what God is showing you about His Word today.

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Looking Forward to God’s Reign


Daily Bible Reading – Numbers 5,6; Psalm 22; Acts 26

Today’s Key Passage - Psalm 22:12-31

 

In Psalm 22, David was suffering through a great trial.  Through his suffering, he was able to gain victory by knowing that the Father would protect him and deliver him.  David knew that despite his current struggles, one day God would reign supreme in the world and that all of his problems would be over.

Hundreds of years later, Jesus Christ would also suffer through a great trial.  Jesus would be encircled by a pack of villains, who would pierce His hands and feet.  His bones would be on display and people would stare and gloat over Him.  They would divide His clothes among them and cast lots for His garment.  Through his suffering, he was also able to gain victory by knowing that His Father would protect him and deliver him.  Jesus knew that despite His current struggles, one day He would reign supreme in the world and that all of His problems would be over.  He knew that, “all the ends of the earth will remember and turn to the LORD, and all the families of the nations will bow down before Him, for dominion belongs to the LORD and he rules over the nations.”

Today, we will all suffer through times of great trials.  We will all face times when we will feel as though we are encircled by a pack of villains.  In these times of suffering, we can take solace knowing that as the children of God, our Father in Heaven will deliver us from evil and will protect us.  We can all look forward to the day when Jesus returns to reign over everything. “For the Son of Man is going to come in his Father’s glory with his angels, and then he will reward each person according to what they have done.” (Matthew 16:27)  When that day comes, all of our trials that seem so pressing today will be a distant memory.  The house that we live in, the car that we drive, the phone that we carry, and the computer we use will mean nothing.  Our moments of greatest despair and agony will seem like a speck of dust floating in the wind.  We can rejoice today for the joy we will have tomorrow, and we can rest in the comfort of His love forever.

During your Bible reading today, what “key passages” stood out to you?  Leave a comment below to share what God is showing you about His Word today.

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Dealing With Problems


Daily Bible Reading – Numbers 3,4; Acts 25

Today’s Key Passage - Acts 25:1-22

 

Festus took over for Felix as the Roman governor of Judea, and he had a problem.  Just three days into his position, he found out that he had a man named Paul in his prison who had been there for two years.  He also found out that the Jewish leaders wanted this man dead.  Festus was the new guy in town.  He was new to his position and the last thing he wanted to do was ruffle any feathers in the very beginning of his term in office, but the problem was not going to go away.  Something had to be done about Paul and about the Jews who wanted him dead.  He called them all together to hear the charges, and by his own later admission to Agrippa, he was baffled.  He told Agrippa that when he convened the court and allowed Paul’s accusers to speak, “they did not charge him with any of the crimes I had expected. Instead, they had some points of dispute with him about their own religion and about a dead man named Jesus who Paul claimed was alive. I was at a loss how to investigate such matters”.  Since Festus did not know what to do, he first wanted to send Paul back to Jerusalem, but Paul refused to go because he was a Roman citizen.  Therefore, Festus agreed to send Paul on to Caesar to have his case heard.  Ultimately, Festus simply did not know how to deal with the problem of Paul and therefore wanted to let someone else take care of it.

How often in our lives does the temptation come for us to do the same thing?  As problems arise for us, we often do not know exactly how to handle them and we can easily be tempted not deal with them at all.  When we see a non-believer who does not know the Way, we can be tempted to “bury our heads in the sand” and not talk to them about Christ because it might be uncomfortable.  When we see a fellow believer sinning, we can be tempted to “bury our heads in the sand” and not confront them on their sins because we want to maintain the peace.  Just like Festus, we can be tempted to try to send others on their way to allow someone else to deal with the problem, but none of this is biblical.  Being a follower of Christ does not afford us the opportunity to “bury our heads in the sand”.  Jesus was very specific when He told us how to deal with problems, and regardless of the situation we are called to deal with problems head on.  Having an argument with your spouse?  Deal with the problem head on and have a discussion with her.  Feeling slighted by a friend?  Deal with the problem head on and explain to him how you feel.  See a brother or sister in Christ sinning?  Deal with the problem head on and go to him or her to point out the sin in a loving way.

So why is all of this important?  Why are we not to “bury our heads in the sand” and not deal with the problems that come up in life?  Often the answer to that lies in the aftermath.  If you see a non-believer and fail to talk to them about salvation, you are essentially condemning them to eternal separation from God.  If you see a fellow Christian sinning and do not say anything, you are not showing them the love of Christ and in effect are actually “hating” them.  If you are having an argument with your spouse and you do not try to work it out, seeds of anger and hostility are sown in your heart toward her.  If you feel slighted by your friend and you do not explain how you feel, seeds of animosity are sown in your heart toward him.  Eventually, these seeds will grow, fester, and become a much bigger problem in your relationships.  While it might be uncomfortable for us in the short term, the long-term benefits to our relationships of dealing with problems head on are huge.  Do not be like Festus.  Do not look for ways to avoid dealing with issues when they arise.  Deal with them constructively and with love and watch your relationships with others and with God grow beyond your wildest dreams.

During your Bible reading today, what “key passages” stood out to you?  Leave a comment below to share what God is showing you about His Word today.

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Keeping a Clear Conscience


Daily Bible Reading – Numbers 1,2; Acts 24

Today’s Key Passage - Acts 24:1-16

 

The high priest Ananias and some of the elders went to Caesarea to bring their charges against Paul to Governor Felix.  Specifically, they were claiming three charges against Paul – that he was a troublemaker who incited riots, that he was one of the leaders of an unauthorized religious sect, and that he tried to desecrate the temple.  When Paul was given a chance to defend himself before Felix, he did so and plainly stated that the charges against him were false.  Paul stated that he strives, “always to keep my conscience clear before God and man.”

What does it mean to keep a clear conscience before God and man and why is it important?  We can start with taking a look at keeping a clear conscience before God.  We do this by following His ways and living the way He wants us to live.  We keep our conscience clear before God by staying away from sin and unrighteousness.  Obviously we are not perfect, so when we do sin we immediately confess that sin to Him and ask for forgiveness.  In addition, we repent (or turn away from) that sin and turn to God.  Ultimately, we keep our conscience clear through our faith in Jesus Christ.  Through His actions and through His mercy and grace we can live in right relationship to God and keep our conscience clear before him.

What about keeping our conscience clear before man?  We do this by treating others the way we should treat them.  We do this by not lying, deceiving, or cheating others and by showing them the love of Christ.  We keep our conscience clear before man not by our own efforts, but by the actions of Christ who lives within us and gives us the power to treat others better than ourselves.  Without His help, we would constantly fail in this area and we would never be able to keep our consciences clear before man, but He gives us the power to do just that.

So why is all of this important?  Why should we strive to keep our conscience clear before God and man?  Because guilt is a tool that the enemy uses against us.  When we do not keep our conscience clear we feel guilty, and often that guilt stops us in our tracks and keeps us from fulfilling our mission for God.  How many times do relationships fail (either relationships with God or with others) because of guilt?  When people feel guilty, they tend to want to run away from the relationship causing it to crumble.  Guilt can be a powerful thing, and we must fight it at every turn, and the most complete way to avoid guilt is to keep our conscience clear before God and man.  Fortunately for us, Jesus provided us a perfect model to do this in Matthew 22:37-40 – “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.” When we keep these two commandments, we will keep our consciences clear and never have to worry about guilt getting in our way.

During your Bible reading today, what “key passages” stood out to you?  Leave a comment below to share what God is showing you about His Word today.

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The Right Place at the Right Time


Daily Bible Reading – Leviticus 26,27; Acts 23

Today’s Key Passage - Acts 23:12-24

 

Some of the men from the Sanhedrin wanted to kill Paul.  They viewed Paul as a threat, and they vowed not to eat or drink until Paul was dead.  They came up with a plot against him, and planned to attack him while traveling to stand before the commander of the Roman army.  But God had different plans in mind.  God was watching over Paul and protecting him.  Paul’s nephew heard about the plot to kill him because God put him in the right place at the right time.  Paul’s nephew went to Paul to tell him about the plot to kill him, and Paul instructed his nephew to tell the commander what he had heard.  When Paul’s nephew went to the commander, the commander could have dismissed the boy’s story, but instead God moved him to listen and to act.  The commander came up with a plan to protect Paul and get him to Governor Felix and away from the threat.

Time and time again in the Bible we see that God has perfect timing.  He knows when and where to act to produce the best results.  We also see time and time again that God does a lot of things in the background that we do not even know about to protect us.  Paul did not know about this plot against him and did not even know to be praying to God to thwart it, but God already knew.  He knew to put Paul’s nephew in the right place at the right time to hear about the plot.  God moved Paul’s nephew not to just sit on the information he had but to actually take it to Paul.  God moved the commander to listen to Paul’s nephew and to move Paul out of harm’s way.  God did all of this in the background without Paul even knowing what the outcome would be.  In Jeremiah 29:11, we read, “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.” God’s plans for us will not be thwarted.  He will use His perfect timing and whatever means necessary to ensure we are fulfilling his ultimate plans for us, even when we are completely unaware that this is going on in the background.  How many times has God moved in the background of your life and saved you from pain without you even knowing it?  How many times has he placed people in exactly the right place at the right time for your benefit without you even having to ask?  Never underestimate God’s love for you and all that He does to protect you, and always remember the words from Romans 8:31, “If God is for us, who can be against us?”

During your Bible reading today, what “key passages” stood out to you?  Leave a comment below to share what God is showing you about His Word today.

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May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with you today.

Sharing Our Testimony


Daily Bible Reading – Leviticus 25; Psalm 25-26; Acts 22

Today’s Key Passage - Acts 22:1-22

 

Paul had been worshiping in the temple when he was wrongly accused of bringing a Gentile named Trophimus into the temple with him.  A riot ensued which was eventually broken up by a Roman guard who arrested Paul.  While under arrest, Paul asked the commander for the right to speak to the Jews, and the commander gave him permission.  Today’s key passage is what Paul chose to say to these Jews who wanted to kill him.  As in many other similar circumstances, Paul could have spent his time stating his own defense or he could have pleaded for his release, but instead Paul took this opportunity to share his personal testimony.

The truth is, we will never know when the opportunity might present itself for us to present our own personal testimony.  It could happen at any time.  We might be having a simple conversation on a plane or in a restaurant when the opportunity comes for us to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ, so we must be prepared.  When we read today’s passage, we can gain a lot of insight into the best way to share our faith.  We notice that Paul started with his background.  Since he was speaking to a Jewish crowd, he spoke in Aramaic, which got their attention.  He told them about his history as a devout Jew prior to his conversion.  Had he not done this, many of the people likely would not have even given him a chance to speak, but because Paul established a common ground with his listeners they heard what he had to say.  Finding common ground with the person we are talking to is one of the best ways to begin the process of sharing our faith.

Once Paul had established his background for the listeners, he presented his own personal testimony about his encounter with Jesus and explained to them how he came to his faith in Christ.  Our personal testimony of exactly what God has done for us is often our most powerful message to others.  We can quote the Bible to people (which helps in certain situations) or we can tell what God has done for others (which can also help in certain situations), but when a person is making the decision of whether or not to follow Christ often the most powerful thing he can hear is how God changed your life.  Even if our personal story is not as dramatic as Paul’s, we can still talk about our personal encounter with Jesus.

One final note about today’s passage – regardless of what our testimony is or how well we present it, whether or not others accept it is not under our control.  Some people will hear you, while others will not.  You will notice that even after telling the Jews about his personal encounter with a resurrected Jesus, they still wanted to kill him as soon as Paul mentioned the Gentiles.  Our responsibility is to present to others the true Gospel.  Our responsibility is to share with others what God has done for us.  Our responsibility is to faithfully present the Word of God.  Everything else, including whether or not the people who hear us will accept Jesus as their personal Lord and Savior, is up to God.  When we do our part, and let God do His, we will never go wrong.

During your Bible reading today, what “key passages” stood out to you?  Leave a comment below to share what God is showing you about His Word today.

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May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with you today.

Daily Practices


Daily Bible Reading – Leviticus 23,24; Psalm 24; Acts 21

Today’s Key Passage - Psalm 24 

We all have certain things we do on a daily basis.  Whether it be eating, drinking, getting dressed, brushing our teeth, or checking email, there are certain things that we never go without doing even for a single day.  Psalm 24 challenges us with three things we should add to our list of daily practices, because spending time with God daily is more important than anything else we can do.  Let’s break down Psalm 24 into these three sections and take a look at what we should strive to do daily.

Verse 1 and 2 say, “The earth is the LORD’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it; for he founded it on the seas and established it on the waters.”  Each day, we should acknowledge God’s possession.  All that is and all that will ever be belongs to God.  He has created everything for His glory.  We do not own the house we live in.  We do not own the car we drive.  We do not own the money we make.  We are simply caretakers of God’s possessions.  We have been tasked with being good stewards of His possessions, and we must always remember that everything we see in this world is temporary – “The world and its desires pass away, but the man who does the will of God lives forever.” (1 John 2:17) As followers of Christ, we should also acknowledge daily that we are His possessions in a very special way.  “Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God. (John 1:12-13) We are His children – His most prized possession.

In verse 3 through 6 we read, “Who may ascend the mountain of the LORD? Who may stand in his holy place? The one who has clean hands and a pure heart, who does not trust in an idol or swear by a false god. They will receive blessing from the LORD and vindication from God their Savior. Such is the generation of those who seek him, who seek your face, God of Jacob.” Each day, we should “ascend the mountain” into God’s presence.  Each day we should spend time with God – praying to Him, reading His Word, and meditating on His truths seeking to understand His will for us.  We should strive daily to meet with Him and communicate with Him.  The verses remind us that we are to come to him with clean hands and a pure heart.  How can we do that?  It is really a two-part process starting with God’s gift of salvation to us.  1 Corinthians 6:11 says, “But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.” God has washed away our sins giving us a path to Him and allowing us to come to Him with clean hands and a pure heart.  The second part of the process is regular confession of our sins.  To maintain our clean hands and pure heart, we must go to God and confess all of our unrighteousness and ask Him for His forgiveness.  As we learn in 1 John 1:8-10, “If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word has no place in our lives.”

Finally, in verses 7-10 David writes, “Lift up your heads, you gates; be lifted up, you ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in. Who is this King of glory? The LORD strong and mighty, the LORD mighty in battle. Lift up your heads, you gates; lift them up, you ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in. Who is he, this King of glory? The LORD Almighty— he is the King of glory.” Each day, we should praise the “King of Glory”, our Lord Jesus Christ.  We must remember that our times of prayer are not just a time for asking God for all the things we believe that we need.  Prayer should also be a time for praise and worship of He who has paved the way for us to God.  We are made whole not by our own deeds or our own hands, but by the sacrifice of our Lord Jesus Christ on the cross.  We can praise Him daily for what He has done for us and what He continues to do for us as He acts on our behalf as our chief priest in the house of God.

These three daily practices in Psalm 24 are not difficult, but they are vitally important to our spiritual health and wellbeing.  If you have had trouble spending time with God daily in the past, let today be the first day of the rest of your life.  When we follow these practices daily, all of our relationships (including our relationship with God) will grow stronger as we seek to put Him first in our lives.

During your Bible reading today, what “key passages” stood out to you?  Leave a comment below to share what God is showing you about His Word today.

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May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with you today.

 

A Single-Minded Life


Daily Bible Reading – Leviticus 20-22; Acts 20

Today’s Key Passage - Acts 20:17-35

 

Twenty years ago, a movie called City Slickers hit the box office for the first time.  It is the story of a man name Mitch played by Billy Crystal who goes on a two-week adventure at a dude ranch in response to his mid-life crisis.  The movie is a secular film, but as I read today’s passage I was reminded of a scene near the end of the movie in which Mitch is talking with the grizzled older cowboy named Curly, played by Jack Palance.  Mitch was looking for the secret of life when the following dialog takes place between the two characters (edited slightly for content):

Curly: Do you know what the secret of life is? [holds up one finger] This.

Mitch: Your finger?

Curly: One thing. Just one thing. You stick to that and the rest means nothing.

Mitch: But, what is the “one thing?”

Curly: That’s what you have to find out.

In the passage we read today, Paul says, “I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the gospel of God’s grace.” That was Paul’s “one thing”.  Paul lived a single-minded life – the one thing that was most important to him was preaching the Gospel of Christ.  For him, everything else in his life was worth nothing.

In today’s society, a lot of different things compete in our lives to become the “one thing”.  The world will tell you that money, fame, power, success, fun, or recognition are the most important things in life, but as followers of Christ we know better.  We know that there is only one true thing (God) and only one true goal (to tell others about Christ).  Like Paul, we too can live a single-minded life.  We too can keep our focus on “one thing”.  We too can come to understand that everything else in this world means nothing.

During your Bible reading today, what “key passages” stood out to you?  Leave a comment below to share what God is showing you about His Word today.

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May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with you today.

Being Holy


Daily Bible Reading – Leviticus 18,19; Psalm 13; Acts 19

Today’s Key Passage - Leviticus 19:1-19

 

It can be easy to get bogged down in the book of Leviticus.  Some people may even dismiss most of Leviticus altogether as a listing of strange rituals that applied in a completely different time.  While it is true that some of things we read about in this book, such as animal sacrifice, no longer apply to us after the ultimate sacrifice of Jesus Christ, there is still much we can learn about the nature and character of God in this book.  The theme of the entire book of Leviticus can really be summed up in a single verse at the beginning of chapter 19 – “Speak to the entire assembly of Israel and say to them: ‘Be holy because I, the LORD your God, am holy.” (Leviticus 19:2)  God wanted His people to be holy and set apart from others around them.  He knew that there were really only two options for His people – to separate themselves and be holy or to become corrupted by the world around them.  In an effort to separate His people and keep them holy, He provided them with an outline for how to live a holy life focused on God.

As followers of Christ, we too are called by God to be holy.  In 1 Peter 1:14-16 we read, “As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance. But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.”  The biggest difference, however, it that while the Israelites were able to separate themselves physically from the evil around them, we are literally surrounded by unbelief and evil on a daily basis.  The morals of this world constantly degrade the standards set forth by God so many years ago.  Many of the sins listed in Leviticus are taken very lightly by the world today and some are even considered acceptable behavior by people judging by their own standards and not God’s standards.  The fact remains that our God is a consistent God.  The things He found detestable in Leviticus are still the same things He finds detestable today.  Fortunately, He does not expect us to try to be holy in this world filled with ungodliness all on our own.  While we must still obey His commands out of love for Him, He also gives us some help.  In Colossians 1:21-22 we read, “Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior. But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation”.  Through Christ, we have a way to be seen by God as holy and blameless.  When the temptation to sin comes, remember the words of God from Leviticus 19:2 – “Be holy because I, the LORD your God, am holy.”

During your Bible reading today, what “key passages” stood out to you?  Leave a comment below to share what God is showing you about His Word today.

To become a fan of The Daily Bible Plan’s Facebook Page, CLICK HERE.

To follow me on Twitter for inspirational tweets, click the follow button –

If you like this post, please SHARE it with others to spread the Word of God.

May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with you today.

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