Tag: Holy Spirit

A preachers dream!

Scripture reading for April 19th: Acts 10

Key Scriptures: Acts 10:30-33 “And Cornelius said, “Four days ago, about this hour, I was praying in my house at the ninth hour, and behold, a man stood before me in bright clothing and said, ‘Cornelius, your prayer has been heard and your alms have been remembered before God. Send therefore to Joppa and ask for Simon who is called Peter, He is lodging in the house of Simon, a tanner, by the sea.’ So I sent for you at once, and you have been kind enough to come. Now therefore we are all here in the presence of God to hear all that you have been commanded by the Lord.”

Peter was the chief of the apostles of Jesus Christ and he was a devout Jew. Jews must never go to the house of a Gentile, or so Peter was taught. However, God gave him a dream of a sheet coming down from heaven with all kinds of unclean foods. He was commanded to arise, kill and eat. This happened three times and Peter was struggling to understand when the three men sent by Cornelius arrived at Peter’s lodging. The Holy Spirit spoke to Peter that he should go with them to Cornelius’ home. As he arrived, Cornelius shared his side of God’s directions and asked him to share what God had given him! Now that is a preachers dream come true! Peter preached the Gospel of Jesus Christ and God gave them salvation and the gift of the Holy Spirit!

Acts 10:44-46 “While Peter was still saying these things, the Holy Spirit fell on all who heard the Word. And the believers from among the circumcised who had come with Peter were amazed because the gift of the Holy Spirit was poured out even on the Gentiles. For they were hearing them speaking in tongues and extolling God.”

Faith confession and prayer: Father, thank You for preparing hearts of seekers to hear the Gospel message. Thank You for sending Your people to preach that salvation and the baptism of the Holy Spirit would be poured out through their obedience. Open doors for me today to share Your Word with seekers who are ready to receive Your Word.

Isaiah 9:2 “The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who dwelt in a land of deep darkness, on them has light shone.”

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A new chapter of the Story

Scripture reading for April 6th: Acts 1

Key Scriptures: Acts 1:1-5 “In the first book, O Theophilus, I have dealt with all that Jesus began to do and teach, until the day when He was taken up, after He had given commands through the Holy Spirit to the apostles whom He had chosen. He presented Himself alive to them after His suffering by many proofs, appearing to them during forty days and speaking about the kingdom of God. And while staying with them He ordered them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father, which, He said, ‘you heard from Me; for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now. “”

The book of Acts is a continuation of Luke’s eyewitness account of the events and acts of the Holy Spirit through Jesus’ disciples following Jesus’ resurrection and ascension. He wrote these accounts to Theophilus, whose name means “lover of God”. He was a Gentile convert to Jesus and Luke wrote to give greater understanding to the Gentile church of how our Lord empowered witnesses to take the Gospel from Jerusalem to Judea and Samaria and the ends of the earth. Acts is the historical record of the growth of the early Church after the Promise of the Father came upon them. This book has inspired believers throughout history to be filled with the Holy Spirit and allow God to use them to further His mission to reach the ends of the earth before Jesus returns. It records the acts of the Holy Spirit, mentioned over 50 times, through Jesus’ followers. In a sense, it is still being written until Jesus returns.

Acts 1:8 “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be My witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”

Faith confession and prayer: Lord Jesus, thank You for sending the Promise of the Father, the baptism in the Holy Spirit to empower me and all Your disciples to reach the ends of the earth. Use me to add to the “acts of the Holy Spirit” in my life on earth and to multiply disciples who will take the Gospel of Jesus to the ends of the earth.

Acts 1:10-11 “And while they were gazing into heaven as He went, behold, two men stood by them in white robes, and said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into heaven? This Jesus, Who was taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw Him go into heaven.”

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It’s all about love!

Scripture reading for February 2nd: Mark 12

Key Scriptures: Mark 12:28-31 “And one of the scribes came up and heard them disputing with one another, and seeing that He answered them well asked Him, “Which commandment is the most important of all?” Jesus answered, “The most important commandment is ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is One. And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.””

Jesus had been disputing with the scribes and Pharisees concerning different current religious and political issues. They were trying to trap Jesus by their questions but were not successful. One scribe asked about the greatest commandment and Jesus gave a simple answer, quoted from the Scriptures of Moses. The greatest commandment was to love God fully and completely and the second greatest was to love your neighbor as yourself. These two commandments summed up the whole law of God. It was all about love and love drew obedience from the heart. The scribe had to agree with Jesus and Jesus told him he was not far from the kingdom!

Deuteronomy 6:3 “Hear therefore, O Israel, and be careful to do them, that it may go well with you, and that you may multiply greatly, as the Lord, the God of your fathers, has promised you, in a land flowing with milk and honey.”

Faith confession and prayer: Lord Jesus, I love You will all my heart, soul, mind and strength through the Holy Spirit You gave me. I desire to love my neighbor as myself. Help me daily to walk in Your love and let Your love flow through me.

Romans 5:5 “. . .and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts by the Holy Spirit Who has been given to us.”

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The time is fulfilled!

Scripture reading for January 18th: Mark 1

Key Scriptures: Mark 1:9-11, 14-15 “In those days Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. And when He came up out of the water, immediately he saw the heavens being torn open and the Spirit descending on Him like a dove. And a voice came from heaven, “You are My beloved Son; with You I am well pleased.”. . . .”Now after John was arrested, Jesus came into Galilee, proclaiming the Gospel of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the Gospel.””

Mark wrote this Gospel account of Jesus’ life with much of the eye-witness information gotten from the Apostle Peter, one of the original twelve disciples. He wrote this for the believers in Rome, many who were Gentiles and not acquainted with Jewish history or customs. He records the story of Jesus beginning with John the Baptist and Jesus’ baptism. John baptized in water and called all Jews to repent for the forgiveness of their sins in preparation for the kingdom of God. Jesus was baptized, not because He had sin, but to identify with all sinful men that He might offer Himself on their behalf. Jesus was baptized and heaven opened with God’s voice declaring, “You are My beloved Son, with You I am well pleased.” God confirmed Jesus’ Sonship with the Holy Spirit descending and resting on Him! After this, Jesus was tempted for forty days and then after the temptation and John the Baptist’s arrest, He began His ministry with John’s message of repentance and a call to believe the Gospel. The kingdom of heaven was at hand and the King was inviting all!

Isaiah 40:3 “A voice cries; “In the wilderness prepare the way of the Lord; make straight in the desert a highway for our God.””

Faith confession and prayer: Lord Jesus, I believe You are God’s beloved Son and I have repented of my sins. Thank You for the gift of the Holy Spirit and the mission to testify and preach the Gospel of the King Jesus to the world. Let Your voice be heard through me today!

Matthew 24:14 “And this Gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.”

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Are you of God? Or Satan?

Scripture reading for November 24th: Zechariah 2-5; Psalm 93; 1 John 3

Key Scriptures: 1st John 3:7-10 “Little children, let no one deceive you. Whoever practices righteousness is righteous. Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil. No one born of God makes a practice of sinning, for God’s Seed abides in him, and he cannot keep on sinning because he has been born of God. By this is it evident who are the children of God, and who are the children of the devil: whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor is the one who does not love his brother.”

John was concerned about deception in the church. False teachers came and spread the lie that it did not matter how you lived, receiving Christ in your spirit was all that was needed. John set the record straight by repeating the same thing several times and ways. If you practice sin, you are of the devil. If you practice righteousness and love your brothers and sisters, you are born of God and His “Seed” abides in you. We are not saved by works, but by grace through faith in Jesus Christ. God’s “Seed”, His Word and Spirit, come to live in us and transform us into Christ’s image. Our fruit shows which one we belong to: either the devil or God.

Psalm 93:5: “Your decrees are very trustworthy; holiness befits Your house, O Lord, forevermore.”

Faith confession and prayer: Lord Jesus, I don’t ever want to be deceived. Thank You for the Holy Spirit and Your “Seed”, the Word given as grace gifts to form Christ’s holy character in me.

Zechariah 4:6 “Then he said to me, “This is the Word of the Lord to Zerubbabel: Not by might, nor by power, but by My Spirit, says the Lord of Hosts.””

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Breathe on me!

Scripture reading for November 18th: Daniel 10-12; John 20

Key Scriptures: John 20:19-23 “On the evening of that day, the first day of the week, the doors being locked where the disciples were for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.” When He had said this, He showed them His hands and His side. Then the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord. Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent Me, even so I am sending you.” And when He had said this, He breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you withhold forgiveness from any, it is withheld.”

In the evening after Jesus arose from the tomb, He appeared to His disciples who were waiting behind locked doors and were fearful of the Jews who had crucified their Lord. Jesus simply appeared, a locked door was not able to keep Him out. He spoke peace to the troubled disciples and showed them His hands, scared with the nails and His side, opened with the spear. This was to reassure them that it was really Him. He spoke peace again and then breathed on them, inviting them to receive the Holy Spirit. As they believed on their Resurrected Lord, the breath of God entered them and they were born again. This mirrored God breathing life into Adam, the man He had formed from the dust and clay.

Faith confession and prayer: Lord Jesus, thank You for Your peace and for walking into my life in spite of my locked door of fear and pride. Thank You for the Father’s gift of the Holy Spirit, God’s breath in me, imparting fresh ability to lead others to Your righteousness that I might shine with Your glory.

Daniel 12:2-3 “And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life and some to shame and everlasting contempt. And those who are wise shall shine like the brightness of the sky above; and those who turn many to righteousness, like the stars forevermore.”

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The Peace of Christ!

Scripture reading for November 10th: Ezekiel 39-42; John 14

Key Scriptures: John 14:25-27 “These things I have spoken to you while I am still with you. But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, Whom the Father will send in My Name, He will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you. Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.

Peace is not easy to come by in the troubled world we all live in. There are many ‘peace-robbers’ that can cause fear, troubled hearts and shattered lives. The disciples of Jesus lived in such a world as well and Jesus knew that they were about to have their world turned upside down. He prepared them for the coming events by reminding them of His teaching and Words of wisdom. He promised them a “Helper” in the Holy Spirit Who would be sent to them by the Father. The Holy Spirit would continue to teach them and bring everything Jesus taught to their remembrance. The peace of Christ is ours! Now and forever!

Faith confession and prayer: Lord Jesus, Your Word brought to my remembrance by the Holy Spirit brings me peace that passes my understanding. You are the “Prince of Peace”!

Ezekiel 39:29 “And I will not hide My face anymore from them, when I pour out My Spirit upon the house of Israel, declares the Lord God.”

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Carried by the Holy Spirit!

Scripture reading for October 19th: Jeremiah 43, 44, 46, 2nd Peter 1

Key Scriptures: 2nd Peter 1:19-21 “And we have the prophetic word more fully confirmed, to which you will do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts, knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone’s own interpretation. For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.”

Peter, along with James and John, were eyewitnesses to the amazing event of the transfiguration. They saw Jesus transfigured in brilliant light along with Moses and Elijah and heard God’s voice, declaring Jesus as His beloved Son. But Peter told the believers that they had the Word of God delivered to them as well. No Scripture came from man’s will or imagination, but those who wrote were carried along by the Holy Spirit and the Word was God’s Word! We must pay attention as surely as Peter heard God’s voice! The entrance of God’s Word brings light to our darkness.

Faith confession and prayer: Lord Jesus, thank You for Your holy Word. I trust Your Word as Truth and the rule for faith and practice. Fill me with the Holy Spirit to rightly divide Your Word and preach it faithfully. Let the light of Your Word shine through me!

Jeremiah 44:23 “It is because you made offerings and because you sinned against the Lord and did not obey the voice of the Lord or walk in His law and in His statutes and in His testimonies that this disaster has happened to you, as at this day.”

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Served by the prophets!

Scripture reading for October 12th: Jeremiah 30-33, 1st Peter 1

Key Scriptures: 1st Peter 1:10-12 “Concerning this salvation, the prophets who prophesied about the grace that was to be yours searched and inquired carefully, inquiring what person or time the Spirit of Christ in them was indicating when He predicted the sufferings of Christ and the subsequent glories. It was revealed to them that they were serving not themselves but you, in the things that have now been announced to you through those who preached the good news to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven, things into which angels long to look,”

Peter loved Jesus and His Word! He had denied Christ three times, but was restored by Jesus with three questions concerning his love for Him. Peter knew salvation was found in Jesus Christ alone by grace. He also knew the Scriptures and writings of the prophets were Holy Spirit inspired. Jesus had opened the Scriptures to him and the Holy Spirit, living in him, now revealed truth that enabled him to preach the good news. The prophets of old were serving their generation as well as Peter, the Apostle of Jesus Christ and generations to come should the Lord tarry!

Faith confession and prayer: Lord Jesus, thank You for Your amazing Word written down through the prophets and confirmed to me by the Holy Spirit. Fill me with Your Spirit today to preach the good news and serve this generation!

Jeremiah 31:33-34 “”For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares the Lord: I will put My law within them, and I will write it on their hearts. And I will be their God, and they shall be My people. And no longer shall each one teach his neighbor and each his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for they shall all know Me, for the least of them to the greatest, declares the Lord. For I will forgive their iniquity and I will remember their sin no more.””

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Sealed by the Holy Spirit

Scripture reading for June 23rd:  Song of Songs 7-8, Psalm 127, 2nd Thessalonians 2

Key Scriptures:  2nd Thessalonians 2:13-17  “But we ought always to give thanks to God for you, brothers beloved by the Lord, because God chose you as the firstfruits to be saved, through sanctification by the Holy Spirit and belief in the truth.  To this He called you through our Gospel, so that you may obtain the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.  So then, brothers, stand firm and hold to the traditions that you were taught by us, either by our spoken word or by our letter.  Now may our Lord Jesus Christ Himself, and God our Father, who loved us and gave us eternal comfort and good hope through grace, comfort your hearts and establish them in every good work and word.”

Paul warned the Thessalonians concerning the coming deception of the lawless one, the antichrist, who would deceive those who refused to love the truth.  But he gave thanks for the believers and encouraged them to stand firm through the power of the Holy Spirit.  The Holy Spirit would set them apart for God and reveal truth to their hearts.  Through the Holy Spirit, God the Father would comfort the believers and give them hope through further revelations of the grace that is ours through faith in Christ.  God would establish them in every good work and word, protecting them from deception!

Song of Songs 8:6  “Set me as a seal upon your heart, as a seal upon your arm, for love is strong as death, jealousy is fierce as the grave.  Its flashes are flashes of fire, the very flame of the Lord.” 

Faith confession and prayer: Father God, thank You for the gift of the Holy Spirit, sealing me for the day of full redemption, giving me comfort and good hope.  Fill me afresh with the flame of Your love and protect me from deception.

 

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