Tag: blessed

Father and example in the Gospel

Scripture reading for August 30th: Isaiah 26-29, Psalm 65, 1st Corinthians 4

1st Corinthians 4: 10-15 “We are fools for Christ’s sake, but you are wise in Christ. We are weak, but you are strong. You are held in honor, but we in disrepute. To the present hour we hunger and thirst, we are poorly dressed and buffeted and homeless, and we labor, working with our own hands. When reviled, we bless; when persecuted, we endure; when slandered, we entreat. We have become, and are still, like the scum of the world, the refuse of all things. I do not write these things to make you ashamed, but to admonish you, my beloved children.. For though you have countless guides in Christ, you do not have many fathers. For I became your father in Christ Jesus through the Gospel. I urge you then, be imitators of me.”

The early apostles were considered fools by the world and even by some in the church. Their lives were examples of sacrifice and hard work to meet their own needs and also to minister to others. By their ministry, many were saved and introduced into God’s family. This process caused Paul to consider them his spiritual ‘children’. Paul encouraged those in Corinth who had been saved under his ministry to follow his example and live unselfishly for the sake of Christ Jesus and His Gospel message. What the world thinks of us means nothing. Pleasing Christ by living by faith in faithfulness to His Word is all that truly matters.

Isaiah 26:1-3 “In that day this song will be sung in the land of Judah: “We have a strong city; He sets up salvation as walls and bulwarks. Open the gates that the righteous nation that keeps faith may enter in. You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You.”

Prayer: Father God, thank You for those You called as the first Apostles. Thank You for their lives of sacrifice and their obedience to the Holy Spirit that inspires me today to live a life of sacrifice and dedication to You. Thank You for Your perfect peace given to those whose trust is in Christ Jesus. I look forward to the New Jerusalem and Christ’s reign as King of Kings! I am blessed You chose me!

Psalm 65:4 “Blessed is the one You choose and bring near, to dwell in Your courts! We shall be satisfied with the goodness of Your House, the holiness of Your Temple.”

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Blessed are those who read aloud!

Scripture reading for December 2nd: Revelation 1

Key Scriptures: Revelation 1:1-3 “The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave Him to show to His servants the things that must soon take place. He made it known by sending His angel to His servant John, who bore witness to the Word of God and to the testimony of Jesus Christ, even to all that he saw. Blessed is the one who reads aloud the words of this prophesy, and blessed are those who hear, and who keep what is written in it, for the time is near.”

John was imprisoned on the Isle of Patmos for preaching the Word of God. Tradition says he was boiled in oil but it had no effect on him so the Roman government sent him away. By this time, John was likely over ninety years old. As John was worshiping the Lord, he was visited by Jesus Christ and given the task of writing down for the church “what was, what is and what must soon take place.” John pronounced a blessing on all who would read the words of this prophesy out loud. We remember that “faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of Christ.” (Romans 10:17) The title, “Revelation” of Jesus Christ is “Apocalupsis” in Greek and means “lifting of the curtain” on the unseen realities associated with Jesus Christ. This amazing book is a gift to the Church and promises blessing to readers, hearers and doers of the words written. The time is at hand!

Revelation 1:10 “I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day, and I heard behind me a loud voice like a trumpet saying, “Write what you see in a book and send it to the seven churches, to Ephesus and to Smyrna and to Pergamum and to Thyatira and to Sardis and to Philadelphia and to Laodicea.”

Faith confession and prayer: Father, I receive this revelation of Jesus Christ and ask that you lift the curtain on my heart and mind and show me afresh the glory of my Lord. Help me to read aloud, to hear with my ears, and to heed with all my heart the Word of God. Use me to proclaim this Word to Your people and to the lost that they may find Jesus Christ as Lord.

Revelation 1:17-19 “When I saw Him, I fell at His feet as though dead. But He laid His right hand on me, saying, “Fear not, I am the First and the Last, and the Living One. I died, and behold I am alive forevermore, and I have the keys of Death and Hades. Write therefore the things that you have seen, those that are and those that are to take place after this.”

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The grace of giving!

Scripture reading for September 27th: 2nd Corinthians 8

Key Scriptures: 2nd Corinthians 8:1-5 “We want you to know, brothers, about the grace of God that has been given among the churches of Macedonia, for in a severe test of affliction, their abundance of joy and their extreme poverty have overflowed in a wealth of generosity on their part. For they gave according to their means, as I can testify, and beyond their means, of their own accord, begging us earnestly for the favor of taking part in the relief of the saints–and this, not as we expected, but they gave themselves first to the Lord, and then by the will of God to us.”

Paul now turns to boast on the churches in Macedonia and God’s amazing grace of giving that had caused them to respond with generosity. Giving is a gift of God’s grace. It is natural for worldly people to want to hold onto what they have, especially during hard times when the fears of poverty and need are strongest. But the believers in Macedonia exceeded Paul’s expectations and he noted the special grace of giving among them. The first had given themselves to the Lord and as a result of that, they could then give themselves to generosity to Paul and the ministry team. They were going through affliction and trials of poverty and persecution, but God had given them joy in abundance and a willingness to give that caused them to ask for the privilege of giving. If you want to be blessed, ask God to give you this ‘grace of giving’ and choose to excel in it!

2nd Corinthians 8:7 “But you excel in everything–in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in all earnestness, and in our love for you–see that you excel in this act of grace also.”

Faith confession and prayer: Father God, thank You for being a generous and giving and loving Father to us Your children. Pass on to me and my children and brothers and sisters in Christ this amazing ‘grace of giving’. Help me to excel in it to bring glory to Your Son, Jesus Christ and be a blessing to Your Church and world mission.

Acts 20:35 “In all things I have shown you that by working hard in this way we must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how He Himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.'”

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The spirit of prophesy

Scripture reading for December 25th: Job 31-33, Psalm 102, Revelation 19

Key Scriptures: Revelation 19:9-10 “And the angel said to me, “Write this: Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb.” And he said to me, “These are the true Words of God.” Then I fell down at his feet to worship him, but he said to me, “You must not do that! I am a fellow servant with you and your brothers who hold the testimony of Jesus. Worship God.” For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophesy.”

John was commanded by an angel to write down the “true Words of God” which was a blessing upon those invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb. This statement caused John to fall down at the angels feet in worship. Then angel then admonished John concerning worship. God is the only One worthy of worship. Angels are simply fellow-servants of God and of those holding the testimony of Jesus. Those believers holding the testimony of Jesus Christ as Lord and faith in the sacrifice the Lamb of God held the true spirit of prophesy. They were destined for the wedding supper and would be eternally blessed!

Psalm 102:27-28 “. . .but You are the same, and Your years have no end. The children of Your servants shall dwell secure; their offspring shall be established before you.”

Faith confession and prayer: Lord Jesus, I worship You and thank the Father for the invitation to the wedding supper You will provide for me and all who hold Your testimony. May I declare prophetically Your testimony to the world I live in today.

Job 33:28 “‘He has redeemed my soul from going down into the pit, and my life shall look upon the light.'”

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Obedience and blessing!

Scripture reading for March 25th:  Deuteronomy 23-26, Luke 11

Key Scriptures:  Luke 11:27-28  “As He said these things, a woman in the crowd raised her voice and said to Him, “Blessed is the womb that bore You, and the breasts at which You nursed!”  But He said, “Blessed rather are those who hear the Word of God and keep it.””

Jesus had cast a demon out of a man that was mute and the man began to speak.  The crowd was amazed but some accused Jesus of casting out spirits by the power of the devil.  Jesus explained that the devil would not cast out the devil–it would be a house divided.  People freed from demons must be careful to fill their souls with God or worse would happen.  Blessed people are those who hear God’s Word and obey it!  They are His ‘treasured possession’ and close relative.

Faith Confession and prayer:  Lord, thank You for Your Holy Word that is for my instruction and cleansing.  Help me today to find those who need deliverance and freedom and I will share Your Word of freedom.  You consider them ‘treasured possessions!’

Deuteronomy 26:18-19 “And the Lord has declared today that you are a people for His treasured possession, as He has promised you, and that you are to keep all His commandments, and that He will set you in praise and in fame and in honor high above all nations that He has made, and that you shall be a people holy to the Lord your God, as He promised.”  

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Blessed, dressed and awake!

Scripture reading for December 20th:  Revelation 16, Psalm 135-36, Proverbs 7

Key Scriptures:  Revelation 16:13-15 “And I saw, coming out of the mouth of the false prophet, three unclean spirits like frogs.  For they are demonic spirits, performing signs, who go abroad to the kings of the whole world, to assemble them for battle on the great day of God the Almighty.  “Behold, I am coming like a thief!  Blessed is the one who stays awake, keeping his garments on, that he may not go about naked and be seen exposed!”  And they assembled them at the place that in Hebrew is called Armageddon.”

As the angels of God’s wrath poured out the sixth of seven bowls on the earth, John saw in the spirit unclean demonic spirits released through the mouth of the false prophet.  These evil spirits would be sent to the kings of the earth to deceive them into assembling on the great day of the Lord for the battle of Armageddon.   Those who believe in Jesus are warned to stay awake and be clothed in righteous garments when that day arrives.  It will come upon the world as a thief, but believers will be ready!

Faith Confession:  I trust God to keep me safe from deception and will do my part to stay in faith in Christ Jesus and wearing the robe of His righteousness, alert for His soon return.   Lord help me to warn those who are not dressed and awake!

Proverbs 7:24-25  “And now, O sons, listen to Me, and be attentive to the words of My mouth.  Let not your heart turn aside to her (the adulteress) ways; do not stray into her paths, . . .”

 

 

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A Remnant of the Faithful!

Scripture reading for June 27th:  Romans 11, Psalm 128, Proverbs 4

Key Scriptures:  Romans 11:2-5  “God has not rejected His people whom He foreknew.  Do you not know what the Scripture says of Elijah, how he appeals to God against Israel?  “Lord, they have killed your prophets, they have demolished Your altars, and I alone am left, and they seek my life.”  But what is God’s reply to him?  “I have kept for Myself seven thousand men who have not bowed the knee to Baal.”  So too at the present time there is a remnant, chosen by grace.”

Elijah was a powerful prophet sent to God’s people to expose their sins and backsliding.  Israel had a history of killing the prophets sent to them and Elijah was a hunted and wanted man for his convicting message.  However, God has a way of keeping His people in the midst of persecution and apostasy. His grace by faith is powerful.  Even now, a remnant is being kept by His grace!

Faith Confession:  I believe that God has the power and ability to keep His people and me in times of apostasy and trouble.  Lord, thank You for the godly remnant that You are now preserving by Your grace!  It is well with me for I am blessed!

Psalm 128:1-2 “Blessed is everyone who fears the Lord, who walks in His ways!  You shall eat the fruit of the labor of your hands; you shall be blessed, and it shall be will with you.”  

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Thanks be to God!

Scripture reading for June 21st:  Romans 7, Psalm 124, Proverbs 31

Key Scriptures: Romans 7:21-25 “So I find it to be a law that when I want to do right, evil lies close at hand.  For I delight in the law of God, in my inner being, but I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members.  Wretched man that I am!  Who will deliver me from this body of death?  Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord!  So then, I myself serve the law of God with my mind, but with my flesh I serve the law of sin.”  

Paul described to the Roman believers how he had a war going on inside of his soul and body before his encounter with Christ.  Paul wanted to do right and knew the law of God in his mind, but his body wanted to serve the law of sin–breaking God’s law.  Paul was wretched and wondered how he could be delivered.  Then he met Jesus Christ and found the deliverance he needed through faith and grace.

Faith confession:  I have victory over sin in my members through faith in Jesus Christ and the gift of His grace. What a blessed man I am!

Psalm 124:7-8 “We have escaped like a bird from the snare of the fowlers; the snare is broken, and we have escaped!  Our help is in the Name of the Lord, who made heaven and earth.”

 

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I am blessed!

Scripture reading for January 7th: Matthew 5, Psalm 5, Prov. 5 (Reading through the New Testament,  Psalms, and Proverbs one chapter a day, five days each week in 2019–please join me in the trek!)

Key Scriptures: Matthew 5:10-13  “”Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.  Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on My account.  Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven,  for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.””

Jesus took His disciples and others who had gathered to hear Him up on a hillside.  There He taught them about the kingdom of heaven and the blessedness of those who were included.  This blessedness called for joy and rejoicing and anticipation of the great reward that would come in God’s time.  It also included persecution and reviling from the world of sinful men on account of righteousness and their relationship with Jesus Christ.  Rejoice now in all things and count on great reward in the fullness of the kingdom of heaven!

Faith’s confession:  I am blessed with Christ’s righteousness and presence in me.  I joyfully endure any hardship or persecution today, knowing Whose I am.  (Action: Pray for God’s blessedness to come to anyone who may be mistreating you now for your love of Jesus.  Do an act of kindness to show them Christ’s love.)

Proverbs 5:21 “For a man’s ways are before the eyes of the Lord, and He ponders all his paths.”  

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Rejoicing in our Reward!

Scripture reading for December 29th:  Revelation 18-22

Key Scriptures:  Revelation 22:12-15  “Behold, I am coming soon!  My reward is with Me, and I will give to everyone according to what he has done.  I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.  Blessed are those who wash their robes, that they may have the right to the tree of Life and may go through the gates into the city.  Outside are the dogs, those who practice magic arts, the sexually immoral, the murderers, the idolaters and everyone who loves and practices falsehood.”  

The last words of Jesus Christ recorded by John, the beloved disciple are “I am coming soon!”  Jesus promises that His reward is with him.  He will justly reward all who are His through the washing of their robes in His blood.  Those who overcome will have access to the Tree of Life and freely go in and out of the New Jerusalem.  Those who will be shut out are those who have not repented of sins and have garments stained by them!

Rejoicing in our Reward: “See, the Sovereign Lord comes with power, and His Arm rules for Him.  See, His reward is with Him, and His recompense accompanies Him.  He tends His flock like a shepherd; He gathers the lambs in His arms and carries them close to His heart; He gently leads those that have young.”  (Isaiah 40:10-11)

Amen!

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