2019-07-01 – Ephesians 4:32
Verse of the Day: Ephesians 4:32 Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.
In this section Paul is giving some thoughts on the new life in the spirit. This verse addresses how we should be around our brothers and sisters in Christ. We are to be loving and kind.
There are going to be times when our fellow Christians are going to disappoint us. I have seen so many instances where there is arguing (not debating but fighting), demeaning and taking advantage of one another, just plain treating each other wrongly.
Where is the love in that? Jesus commanded this of us. John 13:34 says, ‘A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another.” Note, this is not a suggestion. We are required to love just as He loves us. He loves everyone, including the those who are against Him. This does not mean He did not admonish some, like the Jewish leadership. However, like with the brethren, His love was unquestionable. In fact, In fact, a few times it led to tears. I think what we see here is that disagreements should not lead to anger. It should lead to a friendly learning experience where all can come to the truth.
If a brother or sister offends us in any way, forgiveness should be the outcome. We should never hold a grudge but should strive for reconciliation. There should be nothing that separates us. We are the body of Christ. Therefore, we should act as Christ did. This will bring the unity God has called for and will bring glory to God through the ‘true’ love we show everyone.
2019-07-02 – Romans 12-2
Verse of the Day: Romans 12:2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.
When we become Christians, it is important for us to realize our old life is done away with and we are new creatures. Paul wrote to the Corinthian Church the following, “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.” 2 Corinthians 5:17. So, being a new creature is a result of accepting Christ as Savior.
Our old life was being conformed to this world. In order to fit in and make life easier, we would do things the way the world did it, believe what the world believed, take on habits and feelings that it considered appropriate and acceptable. I am not saying we all accepted everything, but much of it. Especially in the area of the existence of God, and even more fundamentally, what God is.
When we are saved through the blood of Christ and become new creatures, we are to discard these old thoughts and ways. We are to take on the ways of Christ and not of the world. We must change the way we think from a worldly to a spiritual view. We must study God’s Word and make Christ’s ways the model of our own. If something is sin, we must see it as sin. If something is a bad witness, we must not do it. Our life must exemplify the life God wants and demands us to live. And as we live this transformed life, we will exhibit to ourselves as well as those around us what is good and acceptable and perfect. Let God work through us in this process. We can do this because He promised us He would make it happen.
2019-07-03 – Matthew 6:33
Verse of the Day: Matthew 6:33 “But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.
As Christians, we have no need to worry about the needs in our life. This verse does not mean we will get everything we ‘want’, but everything we ‘need’. This has nothing to do with the name it, claim it heresy Look at the list in vs 25 and 31. It deals with food, clothing and shelter. These are really our only needs; food to eat, clothes to wear, and a place for shelter.
What Jesus is saying here is that if we truly, with everything that is in us, seek first His kingdom, His righteousness, His life, God will take care of meeting the above needs. It is important that we understand that it may not be the way we would like it. For instance, we may want and get a full meal, however, we may only get some bits and pieces of food. But it is food and gives us what we need. Also, we may want and get a new house, however, we may only get a small room or someplace to hang out with protection from the environment. God will provide our absolute needs, but He will do it in the way that is best for us with the tasks He has for us to accomplish.
Be thankful for all His gifts, and all His provision. Use all these things in your work for Him. Do not compare yourself and what God provides with what others have. If you have any food to eat, any clothes to wear, and anyplace to shelter yourself, you are blessed. There are many people in the world who do not have anything at all. Therefore, be thankful.
2019-07-04 – Psalm 103:11
Verse of the Day: Psalm 103:11 For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is His lovingkindness toward those who fear Him.
This, to me, is a beautiful passage.
If we think about it, the height of the heavens is so great we cannot even begin to imagine it. There are no boundaries. It goes beyond stars, galaxies, and all things within this universe. If we were to set out to go to the end of everything, we would never reach it. First, we would get to the end of the universe God created and we reside in, however, after that is the realm of eternity where God resides.
What the psalmist is basically saying is that God’s lovingkindness is infinite. There is no end to the love God has for us who fear him. We can never conceive of anything greater than His love. Isaiah uses the same picture describing God’s ways. “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways And My thoughts than your thoughts.” Isaiah 55:9.
Finally, Jesus stated it best when He said, “Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends.” John 15:13 And who are His friends? “You are My friends if you do what I command you.” John 15:14
We who are totally devoted to Him and do what He commands us, His love for us is beyond measure. It is so great, He Himself died for us, one who never had to die, but He took on the form of man so that He could pay for our sins by His death. I reiterate, what a beautiful passage this is.
2019-07-05 – Jeremiah 1-5
Verse of the Day: Jeremiah 1:5 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, And before you were born I consecrated you; I have appointed you a prophet to the nations.”
Have you ever wondered why God works in you and through you the way He does? We see the answer here in these words God spoke to Jeremiah; that being He knew Jeremiah even before He formed Him in His mother’s womb. And because He knew Jeremiah, He consecrated Him and appointed Him to be a prophet.
God does not wait for us to be saved to determine what He will call us to do. He knows us long before we are born. In fact, long before we were made. We see in Luke that John the Baptist was known before his birth. “But the angel said to him, Do not be afraid, Zacharias, for your petition has been heard, and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you will give him the name John. You will have joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth. For he will be great in the sight of the Lord; and he will drink no wine or liquor, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit while yet in his mother’s womb. And he will turn many of the sons of Israel back to the Lord their God.” Luke 1:13-16 We also see it with Samson in Judges 13.
From the beginning He knew what you would be doing for Him. Do not be discouraged thinking you are ‘out of your league’. He called you to your mission from the very beginning. And remember, He will work through you to make it happen. You are not alone. Submit to Him, no matter what, and you will fulfill His purpose in your life and bring glory to God. And that is a good thing.