Tag: Love God

Known by God!

Scripture reading for September 3rd: 2nd Chronicles 29-31, 1st Corinthians 8

Key Scriptures: 1st Corinthians 8:1-3 “Now concerning food offered to idols: we know that “all of us possess knowledge.” This “knowledge” puffs up, but love builds up. If anyone imagines that he knows something, he does not yet know as he ought to know. But if anyone loves God, he is known by God.”

Corinth was a pagan city with an idolatrous culture. Many idol temples worshiping various ‘gods’ were in the city and animal sacrifices were offered to appease these ‘gods.’ Christians knew that these idols were nothing and that eating meat from the sacrifices would not harm them. This knowledge made them proud–‘puffed up’, and lacking in love for those caught in this idolatry whom God loved and wanted to reach. They did not know enough about God’s love and their need to restrain their liberty to reach lost sinners. We should rather have God ‘know’ us because we love Him and the lost than to have religious “knowledge.”

Faith confession and prayer: Lord Jesus, fill me with a river of Your love through the indwelling Holy Spirit. Help me to love others caught in the idolatry of these times and reach them with Your love.

2nd Chronicles 30:8 “Do not now be stiff-necked as your fathers were, but yield yourselves to the Lord and come to His sanctuary, which He has consecrated forever, and serve the Lord your God, that His fierce anger may turn away from you.”

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Hearing and doing God’s Word

Scripture reading for March 20th:  Deuteronomy 10-14, Psalm 5, Luke 8

Key Scriptures:  Luke 8:19-21 “Then His mother and His brothers came to Him, but they could not reach Him because of the crowd.  And He was told, “Your mother and brothers are standing outside, desiring to see You.”  But He answered them, “My mother and My brothers are those who hear the Word of God and do it.””

God’s Word is to be listened to, heard, and obeyed.  Jesus was teaching the people that if they wanted to be closely related to Him and God the Father, they must hear and obey God’s Word.  He was not disrespecting His mother and brothers, but using their relationship to Him to call others closer.

Deuteronomy 10:12-13 “And now, Israel, what does the Lord require of you, but to fear the Lord your God, to walk in all His ways, to love Him, to serve the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, and to keep His commandments and statutes, . .”

Faith confession and prayer:  Lord, I love Your Word and seek to hear and obey.  I am thankful that Jesus Christ perfectly heard and obeyed and now has sent the Holy Spirit to empower me.  I long to see the Father’s face.  Spread Your protection over me and give me favor!

Psalm 5:11-12 “Let all who take refuge in You rejoice; let them ever sing for joy, and spread Your protection over them, that those who love Your Name may exult in You.  for You bless the righteous, O Lord; You cover him with favor as with a shield.”  

 

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Believers basic behavior

Scripture reading for October 30th:  Hebrews 13, Psalm 67, Proverbs 1

Key Scriptures:  Hebrews 13:1-5 “Let brotherly love continue.  Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.  Remember those who are in prison, as though in prison with them, and those who are mistreated, since you also are in the body.  Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled, for God will judge the sexually immoral and adulterous.  Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have for He has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” 

Since Christ Jesus is with us now and forever, we have an obligation to live a life that pleases Him in our basic relationships.  We must love our brothers and sisters in Christ, part of our family now and forever.  We must also show hospitality to strangers, because they may be angels of God sent to minister to us or others.  Prisoners are also to be remembered and visited as well as the persecuted for their faith.  Above all, marriage is sacred and to be honored as God has decreed that godly children are to be raised up in the family.  Finally, love God, not money!

Faith Confession:  Jesus Christ is my constant companion and friend.  I choose to live a life of love for God and others that reflects my love for Jesus Christ.  I will be with Him forever!

Psalm 67:1-3 “May God be gracious to us and bless us and make His face to shine upon us, that Your way may be known on earth, Your saving power among all nations.  Let the peoples praise You, O God; let all the peoples praise You.” 

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Faith and Love work together!

Scripture reading for February 25th:  Mark 12, Psalm 40, Proverbs 9

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 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 was asked by a scribe to give His opinion on the most important commandment.  Jesus quoted Deuteronomy 6:4-5 and Leviticus 19:18 about loving God and loving your neighbor.  Love is foundational to faith.  We can trust someone we love.  We believe someone we love.  Love always wants the best for the one loved.  Love for God is first enabling love for your neighbor.

Faith’s confession:  Lord, I love You with all my heart and soul and mind and strength and want to please You through obedience.  Thank You for helping me love my neighbor as myself.  I am still growing in both.  (Action step:  Show God or your neighbor you love them today in a tangible way.)

Psalm 40:8-9  “I delight to do Your will, O my God; Your law is within my heart.  I have told the glad news of deliverance in the great congregation.”  

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The Great Commandment

Scripture reading for January 30th:  Matthew 22, Psalm 22, Proverbs 22

Key Scriptures: Matthew 22:35-40 “And one of them, a lawyer, asked Him a question to test Him. “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?”  And He said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.  This is the great and first commandment.  And a second is like it:  You shall love your neighbor as yourself.  On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.””

Jesus answered the Pharisee’s question concerning the most important commandment in the Law.  He stated plainly that it was all about love and relationships.  Loving God completely and loving one’s neighbor summed up all the Law and Prophets.  The Pharisees wanted to trap Jesus, but Jesus gave them truth that stopped their test.

Faith’s confession:  Lord, I love You with all my heart, mind and strength and depend on You to help me love my neighbor as myself.  Action step:  Seek a way to show love to one of your family or close associates that you may be struggling to get along with.

Psalm 22:22-23 “I will tell of Your Name to my brothers; in the midst of the congregation I will praise You:  You who fear the Lord, praise Him! . .  .”

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Knowing God!

Scripture reading for November 20th:  Ezekiel 20-23, 1st John 2

Key Scriptures:  1st John 2:3-6 “And by this we know that we have come to know Him, if we keep His commandments.  Whoever says “I know Him” but does not keep His commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him, but whoever keeps His Word, in him truly the love of God is perfected.  By this we may know that we are in Him: whoever says he abides in Him ought to walk in the same way in which He walked.”  

What does it mean to truly “know God?”  John, the beloved disciple, says that obedience to His holy Word is the best indication of our knowledge of God and our love for Him.  If we say we ‘know’ God, but live in rebellion to His Word, we are a liar and do not have the truth.  If we truly ‘know’ God through Jesus Christ, we should walk as Christ walked on this earth:  in complete obedience to the Father by depending on the Holy Spirit and God’s grace.

Ezekiel 20:44 “And you shall know that I am the Lord, when I deal with you for My Name’s sake, not according to your evil ways, nor according to your corrupt deeds, O house of Israel, declares the Lord God.” 

Prayer: Lord, thank You for giving me the revelation of Jesus Christ to know You and Your great love and mercy.  Thank You for that mercy instead of dealing with me according to my evil ways.  Help me to live fully for You. Amen.

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Single-hearted serving!

Scripture reading for March 23rd:  Joshua 22-24, Judges 1, Luke 16

Key Scriptures: Luke 16:10-13  “One who is faithful in a very little is also faithful in much, and one who is dishonest in a very little is also dishonest in much.  If then you have not been faithful in the unrighteous wealth, who will entrust to you the true riches?  And if you have not been faithful in that which is another’s, who will give you that which is your own?  No servant can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other.  You cannot serve God and money.”

Jesus warned his disciples about the danger of compromise.  To be faithful servants of God requires a single focus.  You cannot serve God and place something else in His place, vying for your affection.  It is impossible!

Joshua 24:14-15  “”Now therefore fear the Lord and serve Him in sincerity and in faithfulness.  Put away the gods that your fathers served beyond the River and in Egypt, and serve the Lord.  And if it is evil in your eyes to serve the Lord, choose this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your fathers served in the region beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you well.  But as for me and my house, we will  serve the Lord.””

Prayer:  Lord, I choose again today to serve You Alone, to devote my life to You and love You.  Amen.

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The Great Commandment!

Scripture reading for February 23rd:  Numbers 21-24, Mark 12

Key Scriptures:  Mark 12:29-31  “Jesus answered, “The most important 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.””

The scribes and Pharisees were seeking to trap Jesus with theological questions.  Jesus answered them from Scripture with God’s Truth.  The greatest commandments were not any of the Ten Commandments that Moses got on the mountain.  They actually summed them up with a positive call to love God and love our neighbor.  Love fulfills all the commandments because God is Love.  His love is like a well of water in the desert!

Numbers 21:17-18  “Then Israel sang this song:  “Spring up, O well!–Sing to it!–the well that the princes made, that the nobles of the people dug, with the scepter and with their staffs.”  

Prayer:  Lord, help me to keep Your greatest commandment.  I want to drink from the spring of Your great love each day!  Amen.

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Listening to Jesus

Scripture reading for January 30th:  Exodus 24-27, Matthew 22

Key Scriptures:  Matthew 22:35-40  “And one of them, a lawyer, asked Him a question to test Him.  “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?”  And He said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.  This is the great and first commandment.  And a second is like it:  You shall love your neighbor as yourself.  On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.”  

Jesus was being tested and the Pharisees desired to trap Him with a question concerning the greatest commandment in the Law of God.  Jesus gave them His answer, in two parts:  Love God and love your neighbor as yourself.  Jesus stated that these two commandments summed up all the law and the prophets.

Exodus 24:12-13  “The Lord said to Moses, “Come up to Me on the mountain and wait there, that I may give you the tablets of stone, with the law and the commandments, which I have written for their instruction.”  So Moses rose with his assistant Joshua, and Moses went up into the mountain of God.”  

Prayer:  Lord, thank You for these great commandments.  Your love is shown to me by the careful instructions you give and the blood of Jesus that covers my disobedience and ignorance.  Let a river of Your love flow in my life towards You and my neighbors.  Amen.

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Rejoicing in Real Life!

Scripture reading for February 27th:  Deuteronomy 30-33

Key Scriptures:  Deuteronomy 30:19-20  “This day I call heaven and earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses.  Now choose life, so that you and your children may live and that you may love the Lord your God, listen to His voice and hold fast to Him.  For the Lord is your life, and He will give you many years in the land He swore to give to your fathers, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.”  

God invited the Israelites to choose life.  In doing so, they and their children would enjoy a life of loving God and hearing His voice.  He would be their life and bless them with long life in the land of promise!  This involved a faith choice, an act of their will.  If they failed to choose the curses of sin and death would overtake them!

Rejoicing in real life:  Jesus Christ calls all men to repent and choose eternal life through Him!  “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy;  I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”  “I (Jesus) am the way, the Truth and the Life.  No one comes to the Father except through Me.”  (John 10:10, 14:6)

 

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