Monthly Archives: February 2012

Not Saying What Others Want to Hear


Daily Bible Reading – Numbers 24-27

Today’s Key Passage – Numbers 24:10-25

 

Balaam was a sorcerer who was often called upon to place a curse on others.  Balak summoned him to place a curse on the Israelites, and offered to reward him handsomely in return.  Balaam was a greedy man who used his religion as a source of profit, so ordinarily he would have likely done what Balak asked, but God spoke to him directly.  God told Balaam to only say what He told him to say.  God even spoke to Balaam through his donkey (See Numbers 22:21-35).  After being asked several times by Balak to curse the Israelites, Balaam refused to go against God.  He chose to only speak what the Lord told him to speak.  While he could have simply said, what Balak wanted to hear and would have received riches for it, he chose instead to do what was right and speak the truth.  (Later in the Bible, we will learn that Balaam would eventually go back to his evil ways and allow his greed to turn him away from God, but in this case, he stood firm.)

Today, we are often put in situations where we can say what others want to hear or we can say what is true.  What do you say when your wife asks if you like the new blouse she bought even when you really do not?  What do you say to your friend who asks if he should try out for the worship team even though he was not blessed with the gift of music?  In situations like these, often the easiest thing to do is to simply say what the person wants to hear.  You could easily say that the blouse is beautiful or that your friend has a great voice, even though you do not really feel these things are true, and your wife or your friend would walk away feeling great about what you said.  It sounds like a good plan, right?  The problem is, when relationships are built on lies they will eventually fall apart.  What happens when your wife decides to buy more blouses exactly like the one you did not really like?  Will you ever say anything?  Solid relationships with other people are built on trust, and the only way to build that trust is by telling the truth.  Even when it might not profit us, we are still called to tell the truth.  Of course, there are ways to speak the truth in love and ways to speak the truth in hate, and we should always choose to speak in love while also saying what is true.  When we begin to practice radical honesty in a loving way, we will begin to see our relationships grow and prosper like never before.  The next time you are asked a question where you are tempted to say what the person wants to hear, remember the story of Balaam and remember to speak the truth in love.

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.

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John the Baptist Beheaded


Daily Bible Reading – Numbers 21-23; Mark 6,7

Today’s Key Passage – Mark 6:14-29

 

Jesus once said, “Truly I tell you, among those born of women there has not risen anyone greater than John the Baptist” (Matthew 11:11), and in our key passage today we learn what happened to him.  John was a prophet – a servant of the Lord who came to pave the way for Jesus.  He was a great man who did many great things, so why was he ultimately killed?  John, like Jesus, hated sin.  John knew that all sin was bad and especially knew that unrepentant sin was really a slap to the face of God.  Therefore, when John found out that King Herod was committing adultery with his brother’s wife Herodias, he was not able to sit idly by and say nothing.  He told Herod that what he was doing was wrong – he called Herod on his sin in hopes that Herod would repent and turn to God.  This made Herodias furious and she wanted John the Baptist killed, but Herod initially did not want to kill John because he knew he was a righteous and holy man.  Ultimately, though, Herod succumbed to peer pressure and beheaded John.

So what can we learn from today’s key passage?  There are two important lessons we can take away from John’s gruesome fate.  The first lesson is about exposing sin.  When John saw Herod’s sin, he could have simply stayed quiet and not talked to Herod about his adultery.  As a man of God, though, John knew that sitting quietly while people around us sin is really the same as hating them and that not saying anything can often be confused for condoning sin.  John wanted to save Herod, and he knew that Herod needed to repent, so he went to him in love.  Ephesians 5:8-13 says, “For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light (for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth) and find out what pleases the Lord. Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them. It is shameful even to mention what the disobedient do in secret. But everything exposed by the light becomes visible—and everything that is illuminated becomes a light.”  John chose to expose the darkness, and because of that choice he was arrested, imprisoned, and executed.  Does that mean that John made a bad choice in exposing Herod’s sin?  Absolutely not.  Exposing the sin certainly did not make John popular with Herod or Herodias, but that was not what mattered most to John.  What was most important to John was not what others thought about him but rather what God thought about him.  Exposing Herod’s sin was in line with the will of God, meaning John made the only correct choice when choosing to talk to Herod about it, regardless of the ultimate consequences.

The second lesson we can take from this story is not to crumble under pressure.  Herod did not want to kill John.  He feared John and he knew that John was righteous and holy.  Not even his wife could convince Herod to kill John.  Sadly, though, when Herodias’ daughter asked for John’s head Herod found himself in a jam.  He had told her to ask for anything she wanted and swore on oath that he would give it to her, and to deny her request would have made Herod look very foolish in front of his guests.  Herod was more concerned with what others thought about him than he was about doing what was right.  Though he knew killing John was wrong, he crumbled in the face of pressure and killed him anyway.

In this story, we instantly notice the striking contrast between John and Herod.  One man cared about doing what was right in the eyes of God, while the other cared about doing what was right in the eyes of other people.  Very often in life, we find that these two things are not the same.  When we are faced with choices, we should constantly be asking ourselves on which side we want to be.  Do we want to be like Herod and go along with what the world believes to be right, or do we want to be like John and do what God tells us is right.  In reality, this is the same question we have to answer every time we are tempted to sin.  When we make the right choice – when we act in accordance to God’s will instead of man’s will – we know we are making the right decision.

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.

Taking Credit for God’s Work


Daily Bible Reading – Numbers 19,20; Psalm 28; Mark 5

Today’s Key Passage – Numbers 20:1-12

 

About ten years ago or so I was working in the corporate office of a company near where I lived.  One day, I came up with an idea for an operational program that would change the way we ran operations and would ultimately save the company money.  I slaved night and day for at least a month working on this project and setting all of the pieces in place to ensure a successful launch, and when everything was put together I presented the idea to my boss.  A few weeks went by and I did not hear anything about the project, until one day I was sitting in a meeting with my boss, my boss’s boss, and several top executives from the company.  During that meeting, my boss was asked about the department and she brought up the project I was working on.  The only problem was that she presented the idea as if it was her own.  I sat in the meeting listening as she took credit for the work I had done.  Of course, I did not say anything during the meeting, but I can still remember how I felt that day.  I was certainly angry, but more importantly I felt betrayed by what she had done.

Though I had not thought about that situation in years, when I read today’s key passage I immediately remembered how I felt that day.  In our passage, we see that the Israelites were experiencing a drought.  They were thirsty and were agitated and were complaining to Moses.  Moses and Aaron went directly to God and asked for His help, and God told them to go back to the Israelites and to, “Speak to that rock before their eyes and it will pour out its water.”  Instead of following God’s instructions what did Moses do? He went back to the Israelites, but instead of simply speaking to the rock Moses said, ““Listen, you rebels, must we bring you water out of this rock?” Then Moses raised his arm and struck the rock twice with his staff. Water gushed out, and the community and their livestock drank.”  In essence, Moses took credit for God’s work.  Moses acted as though he and Aaron had the power to bring water from the rock, when actually God was the one with that power.  God saved the people from their thirst in the desert – Aaron and Moses were just his messengers.  I can imagine that God felt the same way I felt ten years ago.  He was angry and felt betrayed by what Moses had done, and punished him by not allowing Moses and Aaron to enter the Promised Land.

We can often be tempted to feel prideful about things that we did not actually make happen.  We can be tempted to boast to others about the things we have done.  In actuality, God deserves credit for all of the good things in our lives.  The job you have and the amount of money you make are not due to your “hard work”, your education, or your experience.  You have that job and that paycheck by the grace of God.  That idea that I came up with so many years ago that I was so proud of at the time was not my own doing – that idea was a gift to me from God.  He was working to make me successful, even though I did not know it at the time and was not giving Him any credit for His work.  It is ironic that I felt so angry and betrayed that my boss took credit for my work while all the time I was taking credit for God’s work in every area of my life.  While we are not called to put ourselves down or to be self-deprecating, we are called to be humble.  We are called to acknowledge what God has done for us and what He continues to do for us daily.  In Matthew 23:12, Jesus said, “For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”  Let us all humble ourselves today before the Lord, and remember that He is the one deserving of all the glory.

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.

The Power of God


Daily Bible Reading – Numbers 17,18; Psalm 29; Mark 4

Today’s Key Passage – Psalm 29

 

Do you ever stop to think about the power of God?  I am not talking about a passing thought or a quick acknowledgement – I am talking about actually sitting down and reflecting on His awesome power.  It can be easy for us to simply gloss over His power as we read His Word, but today I would like us to really take some time to think about it.  Let us think about some of the ways in which God has displayed His power over the ages.  It all started with creation.  God created everything from the world we live in to the stars in the sky and the air that we breathe.  When I say God “made” everything, it is not like when we “make” cookies.  For most of us, making cookies involves getting some pre-made cookie dough out the freezer that already comes in a cookie-sized ball, placing it in the oven for 15 minutes or so, and then saying we “made” cookies.  I realize that some people go a little farther and actually make the dough themselves from scratch, but this is still not what I am talking about here.  Imagine actually making the flour.  Imagine creating sugar or eggs.  This is what God did.  He did not simply use things that were already available – He made everything!

Creation was just the first of His many miraculous displays of power.  He summoned a great flood, which consumed the entire earth.  He parted a sea to allow the Israelites to escape Egypt.  He rained down fire on Sodom and Gomorrah.  He healed the sick and the lame.  He gave the blind their sight.  He exorcised demons.  He turned water into wine.  These are some awesome displays of power, and this is just the tip of the proverbial iceberg.  Perhaps His biggest display of power is the resurrection of Jesus Christ.  Up to that point in history, death was thought of as the ultimate power.  Death was the end, but when God raised Christ, He proved His power over death.  The power of God is truly greater than we can possibly comprehend.

Now here is the best part.  That power of God – that same power that raised the dead and created everything – is available to us!  We can tap into that power as followers of Christ.  God gives us strength when we need it the most.  In Ephesians 1:18-23 Paul writes, “I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come. And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way.”  God – the ultimate authority – lives in us and through us.  He gives us the power to overcome any obstacle.  Not even death is enough to trump the power of God.  Reflect on His great power today, praise Him for His mighty strength, and rest in the knowledge that when you are weak He will make you strong.

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.

Jesus Chooses His Twelve Disciples


Daily Bible Reading – Numbers 14-16; Mark 3

Today’s Key Passage – Mark 3:7-19

 

When we see Jesus in Mark 3, He was already a very popular figure.  Wherever He went, large crowds were sure to follow, as everyone wanted to see more of His miracles.  Out of the large group that was following His every move, Jesus decided to take twelve men and make them His disciples.  Jesus wanted to have a close group of twelve men that He could walk with daily.  He would teach them, spend time with them, and prepare them for a time when He would no longer be there in physical form.  Jesus would make these men ready to eventually start the church that we know today.  Since Jesus was only one man, He restricted His number of disciples to twelve to make sure they would each get His individual attention.  So why did He choose these particular twelve men?  They must have had something special about them, right?  Were they men with an exceeding amount of faith?  Later Scriptures would reveal that these twelve men actually faltered in their faith quite a few times.  Were they men with unique abilities or special skills?  We read in the Bible that they were normal, everyday men with normal, everyday lives before meeting Jesus.  So, what was the secret?  Why were these twelve men chosen?

While none of the men had an exceeding amount of faith, popular personalities or unique abilities, they all shared two important traits.  These men were willing to follow Jesus and they were teachable.  These men loved Jesus.  They would do anything for Him.  They knew that He was their Lord and they wanted to follow Him and obey Him.  They wanted to learn from him and understand His ways, and they wanted to live their lives for Him.  That was enough for Jesus.  He did not need special talents or abilities.  He did not need someone who knew the Scriptures backward and forward and who were well learned.  He needed people who were willing to follow Him and who were teachable.

Even today, Jesus is still looking for disciples, though we have a few benefits over the original twelve.  First, we already know the whole story.  The disciples had to live out the story of Jesus day by day never really knowing where it was going to lead, but we can read about it every single day.  We know the ending.  We know that He is God.  We know that He lives forever.  We know that one day He will come back in glory to rule over everything and everyone.  In addition, because we now have the Holy Spirit, Jesus no longer has to restrict Himself to twelve disciples.  Each of us can become a disciple of Jesus and still get personal, one on one attention from Him.  We can talk with Him and walk with Him every single moment of every single day of our lives.  What do we have to do to become His disciples today?  What traits do we need to have?  Do we need to memorize the entire Bible before we can be disciples?  While memorizing Scripture is a great idea that will definitely help you in your walk, it will not make you a disciple.  Do we need to get an advanced degree in theology before we can be disciples?  Getting a degree in theology is great for some people but that will not make you a disciple either.  The price of admission to being a disciple is exactly the same today as it was for the original twelve.  Jesus is looking for people who are willing to follow Him and who are teachable.  That is it.  He is hiring for the position of disciple.  You will receive on-the-job training from Jesus Christ Himself.  He will mold you and shape you in His image, and then He will ask you to go out and reproduce yourself in others.  Once you become a disciple, you will long to create other disciples for Him.  The only special skills required are the willingness to follow Jesus and allow Him to teach you.  If you are looking for a steady job with eternal benefits, apply today.  You do not even need to send in your resume or go to His office.  You can simply bow your head right where you are and ask Jesus to make you His disciple, and He will meet you right where you are.

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.

When Fear Overshadows Faith


Daily Bible Reading – Numbers 12,13; Psalm 90; Mark 2

Today’s Key Passage – Numbers 13:17-33

 

Moses sent twelve spies into Canaan to do a little reconnaissance of the land.  He wanted to know what the land was like and what the people were like.  Did they have a large army?  Were their positions fortified?  Moses wanted to gather as much information as possible before going in and taking over the land.  When the spies returned, ten of the twelve spies had a negative report.  While all twelve men agreed that the land was indeed the “land of milk and honey”, ten of them were afraid.  They told stories about giant men who lived in the Promised Land who protected it from intruders.  Caleb and Joshua were the only two of the twelve who believed they should proceed as God directed them and take over the land.  These two men believed that with God’s help (which God had already promised to provide) they would be victorious.  At the end of the day, ten of the men were gripped with fear, while two of the men had faith.  Sadly, the majority opinion won out and the people decided not to go into the Promised Land.  Because of this decision, the Israelites would spend the next 40 years wandering around the desert.

Sometimes we can let our fear overshadow our faith.  It happened with the Israelites and it can happen to us.  Sometimes we felt led by God to do things that seem a little scary to us.  Maybe we are led to become a missionary or to become a pastor.  Maybe we are led to start our own ministry.  Maybe we are led to get married or to have kids.  Maybe we are led to adopt or to give our next paycheck to someone in need.  God often leads us to do things that might not make us exactly comfortable, and many times that is when fear comes in and starts to ruin everything.  When we let fear overtake us, we run the risk of allowing this fear to overshadow our faith in God.  If the Israelites had simply stood firm in their faith, they surely would have gone into the Promised Land and been victorious just as God said they would.  Instead, they allowed fear to overshadow faith and spent the rest of their lives paying the price.  When the first signs of fear arise, take immediate steps to put an end to it.  Remind yourself of God’s faithfulness.  Remind yourself of His love and the trust He deserves.  Never allow a little fear to get in the way of doing great things for God.

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.

Nothing is Impossible for God


Daily Bible Reading – Numbers 10,11; Psalm 27; Mark 1

Today’s Key Passage – Numbers 11:4-23

 

Each day, the Israelites woke up and found a brand new gift from God waiting for them.  Their daily needs were met by God through his gift of manna, which they found on the ground each morning.  It did not take long, however, before this gift was not enough for them.  They began to complain that they did not have any meat.  Their complaining angered God and frustrated Moses, who in turn took his complaints to God.  While God was not happy with the Israelites for complaining amongst themselves, He agreed to help Moses because he had brought his complaint directly to God.  God informed Moses that He would provide meat for the Israelites for an entire month.  When Moses heard this, his response was one of doubt and unbelief.  He questioned how God could possibly provide meat for 600,000 men for an entire month.  To Moses, the problem seemed too great, but God knew that nothing was impossible for Him.  No problem was too big for God.

It is easy for us to look back at the Israelites complaining or on Moses doubt and just shake our heads.  It seems unfathomable to us that the Israelites could complain about the free food they were provided every single day, which was literally placed at their feet by God, and it seems unfathomable that Moses would doubt the power and might of God given all of the things He had already done for the people.  Sadly, though, none of us are immune to this type of thinking.  How many of us have experienced times when we longed for something more that what God has already provided?  How many of us have wondered if God was listening to us and questioned why He was not stepping in immediately to help us in our time of need?  How many of us have seen a problem and thought that it was simply too great for anyone to fix?  When we start to feel worry in our lives, in essence we are doubting God.  When we wonder why God is not immediately changing our situation, we are doubting His absolute justice, power, mercy, and grace.

As I was discussing today’s reading with my wife, we talked about one of the verses in particular in this passage.  Maria told me that anytime she begins to feel worry over anything, she likes to think about this verse and it helps her eliminate the worry and get her focus back on God.  The verse comes near the end of the passage in Numbers 11:23, and it is God’s answer to Moses’ doubt – “Is the LORD’s arm too short?” The next time you start to feel worry, remember this verse.  The next time you start to feel doubt, remember this verse.  Recite this verse in your times of worry, and remember that nothing is impossible for God.

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.

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

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

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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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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