Scripture reading for June 26th: 1st Kings 7, 2nd Chronicles 4, Psalm 44, 1st Timothy 2
Key Scriptures: 1st Timothy 2:1-6 “First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, Who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself as a ransom for all, which is the testimony given at the proper time.”
Paul urged Timothy to be a man of prayer and lead God’s people in prayer. Prayers should be given for all people and especially for those in positions of authority. God is pleased when His people exercise faith through prayer and grants answers that lead to peace and the ability to share the Gospel message with all men. Jesus Christ is the only mediator between God and men, but believers must appeal to Jesus on behalf of all men! The treasury must be filled with precious souls!
1st Kings 8:51 “Thus all the work that King Solomon did on the house of the Lord was finished. And Solomon brought in the things that David his father had dedicated, the silver, the gold, and the vessels, and stored them in the treasuries of the house of the Lord.”
Faith confession and prayer: Lord, empower me to be a man of prayer who leads your people in prayer. Thank You for Your promises of peace and the salvation of men and women through the Gospel.
Psalm 44:8 “In God we have boasted continually, and we will give thanks to Your Name forever.”
Scripture reading for June 9th: Proverbs 11-13, Psalm 8, Romans 13
Key Scriptures: Romans 13:1-5 “Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment. For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority? Then do what is good and you will receive his approval, for his is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword in vain. For he is the servant of God, an avenger who carries out God’s wrath on the wrongdoer. Therefore one must be in subjection, not only to avoid God’s wrath, but also for the sake of conscience.”
God’s Word teaches us that He alone creates authority and places people in authority to fulfill His will and purposes. When we resist authority, we are resisting God’s appointed one. God’s appointed one is there for your good and protection. If you are doing wrong, God’s authority is there to punish and restrain evil. Each person knows this because God has made it plain in their conscience. There are no excuses now and will be none when we stand before God and answer for deeds done in our body in rebellion to our conscience and His appointed authority!
Psalm 8:4-5 “. . .what is man that You are mindful of him, and the son of man that You care for him? Yet You have made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honor.”
Faith confession and prayer: Lord Jesus, I am thankful for those in authority, believing that You have placed them there for my good and blessing. Help me to honor and obey them, teaching others through example.
Proverbs 11:14 “Where there is no guidance, a people falls, but in an abundance of counselors there is safety.”
Scripture reading for March 24th: Deuteronomy 19-22, Psalm 6, Luke 10
Key Scriptures: Luke 10:17-20 “The seventy-two returned with joy, saying, “Lord, even the demons are subject to us in Your Name!” And He said to them, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. Be hold, I have given you authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall hurt you. Nevertheless, do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.”
Jesus had sent out seventy-two disciples in pairs to do ministry and reap the bountiful harvest. They returned rejoicing that the demons were subject to them. Jesus agreed that Satan’s kingdom was being plundered, but cautioned them not to rejoice in their authority, but that their names were written in God’s register of heaven. God was with them working the miracles and deliverance.
Deuteronomy 20:1 “When you go out to war against your enemies, and see horses and chariots and an army larger than your own, you shall not be afraid of them, for the Lord your God is with you, Who brought you up out of the land of Egypt.”
Faith confession and prayer: Lord, thank you for spiritual authority in the Name of Jesus and Your presence with me always. I rejoice that You have chosen me to share in Your kingdom forever and that You will and have defeated all my enemies!
Psalm 6:10 “All my enemies shall be ashamed and greatly troubled; they shall turn back and be put to shame in a moment.”
Scripture reading for February 13th: Mark 4, Psalm 32, Proverbs 1
Key Scriptures: Mark 4:37-40 “And a great windstorm arose, and the waves were breaking into the boat, so that the boat was already filling. But He was in the stern, asleep on the cushion. And they woke Him and said to Him, “Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?” And He awoke and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, “Peace! Be still!” And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. He said to them, “Why are you so afraid? Have you no faith?” And they were filled with great fear and said to one another, “Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey Him?”
Jesus and His disciples were travelling by boat across the Sea of Galilee when a storm suddenly arose and the disciples feared for their lives. Jesus was asleep in the back of the boat and the disciples woke Him up for help. Jesus rebuked the wind and waves. Then Jesus rebuked them for their fear and lack of faith. The disciples were filled with awe and pondered the identity of their Master.
Faith’s confession: I believe that Jesus Christ, God’s Son, has authority over all things. He is teaching me not to be afraid of life’s storms, but to trust Him in all things, and to speak faith to the storms I encounter, knowing He is with me. (Action step: Speak faith and God’s truth to a trial you are encountering or help a friend in trial with prayer and a faith confession.)
Psalm 32:10 “Many are the sorrows of the wicked, but steadfast love surrounds the one who trusts in the Lord.”
Scripture reading for January 10th: Matthew 8, Psalm 8, Prov. 8
Key Scriptures: Matthew 8:5-9 “When He had entered Capernaum, a centurion came forward to Him, appealing to Him, “Lord, my servant is lying paralyzed at home, suffering terribly.” And He said to him, “I will come and heal him.” But the centurion replied, “Lord, I am not worthy to have You come under my roof, but only say the Word, and my servant will be healed. For I too am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. And I say to one, ‘Go,’ and he goes, and to another, ‘Come,’ and he comes, and to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.”
Jesus Christ marveled at the confession of this Roman centurion. This man understood delegated authority and the power of one in authority. He knew that Jesus had authority to heal and deliver his servant. He also humbly recognized his own unworthiness before Jesus. So he asked Jesus to give the command and understood how that command would be sufficient. “Great faith!” was Jesus’ declaration when he heard the centurion’s faith request!
Faith’s confession: Jesus, I believe that You have authority to heal and deliver those who are sick or bound by disease. I believe that as Your disciple I have authority to ask You in faith for healing. (Action application: Ask Jesus for healing for yourself or someone you know who is hurting.)
Psalm 8:3-6 “When I look at Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars, which You have set in place, what is man that you are mindful of him, and the son of man that You care for him? Yet you have made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honor. Your have given him dominion over the works of Your hands; . .”
Scripture reading for December 17th: Jonah 1-3, Revelation 13
Key Scriptures: Revelation 13:1, 5-8 “And I saw a beast rising out of the sea, with ten horns and seven heads, with ten diadems on its horns and blasphemous names on its heads. . . . And the beast was given a mouth uttering haughty and blasphemous words, and it was allowed to exercise authority for forty-two months. It opened its mouth to utter blasphemies against God, blaspheming His Name and His dwelling, that is, those who dwell in heaven. Also it was allowed to make war on the saints and to conquer them. Authority was given it over every tribe and people and language and nation, and all who dwell on the earth will worship it, everyone whose name has not been written before the foundation of the world in the book of life of the Lamb who was slain.”
Earth dwellers don’t know about heaven and live by their flesh under the control of the devil. Those living in heaven, marked on earth by the Holy Spirit are persecuted by the earth dwellers. In the last days, a beast-like ruler will arise and be allowed to make war on the saints and conquer them. The heaven-dwellers (saints) will not worship this beast, but keeping their vows, only worship the Lamb.
Jonah 2:9 “But I with a voice of thanksgiving will sacrifice to you; what I have vowed I will pay. Salvation belongs to the Lord.”
Prayer: Lord, thank You for the Holy Spirit and Your Word of truth. I chose to worship You alone with thanksgiving! Salvation belongs to the Lord Jesus alone! Amen.
Scripture reading for September 25th: Song of Songs 7-8, Isaiah 1-2, 1st Timothy 2
Key Scriptures: 1st Timothy 2:1-4 “First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.”
Paul encouraged Timothy to teach the church to pray. Prayer for those in authority was to be foundational to the church being able to function under the world and government structures and fulfill the mission of God–preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ to all men that all might be saved and know Christ. The church must pray first of all and obey His voice.
Song of Songs 8:13 “O you who dwell in the gardens, with companions listening for your voice; let Me hear it.”
Prayer: Lord, I pray today for our government leaders, church leaders and all in authority in home, work and government. Let them rule under Your authority and may the Gospel go forth to all people. Amen.
Scripture reading for January 12th: Matthew 8
Key Scripture: Matthew 8:13 “Then Jesus said to the centurion, “Go, It will be done just as you believed it would.” And his servant was healed at that very hour.”
Rome had placed units of their army in Judea and Galilee to keep peace and protect the land from insurrection. A Roman centurion was a commander of a hundred men and was under direction of military officers. The centurion in this story came to Jesus out of deep concern for a servant of his that was paralyzed. He had evidently heard about Jesus’ ability to heal and came believing in Him. After Jesus agreed to go and heal the servant, the centurion told Him not to bother coming but to just speak the word! Jesus was amazed at this Gentile’s faith! He simply told him to go and it would be done as he believed! The results were immediate!
As we walk through this year, we will face many difficult situations and attacks of the enemy against us and our loved ones. Jesus is honored as we call on Him and believe in the authority of His powerful Word! Let’s make Jesus marvel at our faith each day as we ask and believe for the miraculous!
Observations for over-comers: Let your compassion for hurting people move you to ask Jesus to heal and to claim His Word as authority over the attacks of Satan! “. . .and call on Me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you will honor Me.” (Psalm 50:15)
Scripture reading for March 4th: Mark 11:26-12:17, Psalms 47:1-9, Proverbs 10:24-25
“They arrived again in Jerusalem, and while Jesus was walking in the temple courts, the chief priests, the teachers of the law and the elders came to him. “By what authority are you doing these things?” they asked. “And who gave you authority to do this?” (Mark 11:27-28)
Jesus had just cleansed the temple, overturning the tables of the money changers and teaching the people about God’s house being a house of prayer. This caused the religious authorities to begin looking for a way to kill Him. They feared Him because all the people were amazed at His teaching and were drawn to Jesus. They did not understand why Jesus felt that He had authority to take charge in their assigned domain of the temple. They were insecure and felt threatened and their worldly way of handling this was murder! This was in the face of the Son of God and directly opposed to the commandment of God that told them “Thou shall not murder.” (Exodus 20:13)
These men came to Jesus and asked Him where He got His authority. “Who do you think you are?” would be a modern day translation of this confrontation. Jesus answered them with another question and told them He would reveal His source of authority if they could or would answer His question. “”John’s baptism, was it from heaven, or from men?” Tell Me.” (Mark 11:29b) These leaders discussed their possible answers. They could have said “from heaven” and Jesus would have asked them why they didn’t believe John’s word that Jesus was the “Lamb of God”. They feared saying that it was from men, because the people all believed that John was a prophet who spoke from God. So they simply avoided an answer and Jesus refused to give them an answer directly.
Jesus was really probing what they really believed and getting at the root of all faith. Who do you really believe that Jesus is? Where do you think Jesus got His authority? It comes down to a matter of faith and God will give us all the evidence we need to believe if we open our hearts and want to know. If we are really plotting Jesus’ destruction, even the truth standing in front of us won’t matter! Have you settled this question in your heart? Today is a good time!
Scripture reading for October 24th: Luke 10-12
We are in a war and often our lives here on earth resemble a war zone! The Kingdom of Heaven is in direct opposition to the kingdom of the devil. The devil’s kingdom is one of dominance, manipulation, fear, and deceit. God’s Kingdom is one of love, compassion, faith, and truth. The devil uses sickness, oppression, depression, and poverty to imprison those made in God’s image. God sends His people out under His authority to heal the sick, deliver the oppressed, preach good news to the depressed and hopeless, and share His great riches with all who will receive! These kingdoms are in conflict that is raging around the earth each day.
In our reading today, Jesus sent out seventy-two disciples into this conflict. (Luke 10:1-4) They were not to take a purse, bag, or sandals. They were not to greet anyone on the road because they had a mission. They were armed with His Word and authority and had prayed that the Lord would send out workers. Jesus then sent them! Be careful what you pray for– you may be the answer!
They were to live by faith and trust God for whatever they needed in the way of daily provisions. As they entered a town, or a house, and were welcomed, they were to speak ‘peace’ to those who dwelt there. They were to eat and have fellowship with those who welcomed them. They then were to heal the sick and tell them of the Kingdom of God. (Luke 10:8-9) However, if they were not welcomed, they were to shake the dust from their feet and warn the people that the Kingdom of God had come near to them and their dust would be a witness against them on judgment day. (Luke 10:10-12) It was a simple assignment!
As the seventy-two returned to Jesus, they were full of joy and rejoiced at their results! The demons had fled, sick people were healed, and Jesus’ authority had given them victory after victory! Jesus Himself remarked: “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you. However, do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.” (Luke 10:18-20) Jesus was filled with joy at these disciples’ success and their understanding, for the Father had opened their hearts and given it to them. He cautioned them not to become proud, but to remain humble about God’s grace gift to them.
As we reflect on this passage and on our own lives, we realize that each day we are sent into this conflict. We have the Holy Spirit and the Name of Jesus Christ. Authority is ours to plunder the enemies’ camp! All power of the enemy can be overcome by faith and the Word of God. We must remain humble and under His authority. Go out with humble boldness today and bring joy to God’s heart!