Scripture reading for April 27th: Acts 16
Key Scriptures: Acts 16:25-30 “About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them, and suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken. And immediately all the doors were opened, and everyone’s bonds were unfastened. When the jailer woke and saw that the prison doors were open, he drew his sword and was about to kill himself, supposing that the prisoners had escaped. But Paul cried with a loud voice, “Do not harm yourself, for we are all here.” And the jailer called for lights and rushed in, and trembling with fear he fell down before Paul and Silas. Then he brought them out and said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved? And they said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household.””
Because of preaching Jesus, Paul and Silas were beaten and placed in stocks in the dungeon of a Philippian jail. Not dismayed, they were worshiping God about midnight when a peculiar earthquake rocked the jail. It loosed all the shackles and opened the doors, causing the jailer to wake up in despair. Thinking that the prisoners had escaped, he prepared for suicide knowing the government would hold him accountable. Paul called out to him, stopping his final act. The jailer came and fell down before the freed prisoners and asked the preachers an amazing question: “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” Paul and Silas were ready with a simple answer that would apply to the jailer and his family! It is still true today and has brought other household salvations.
Acts 16:33-34 “And he took them the same hour of the night and washed their wounds; and he was baptized at once, he and all his family. Then he brought them up into his house and set food before them. And he rejoiced along with his entire household that he had believed in God.”
Faith confession and prayer: Lord Jesus, thank You that you make it easy to know how we can be saved, not just from ourselves, but from sin and it’s deadly consequences. I pray for salvation for my household and the rejoicing that results from repentance and faith in Jesus Christ. Shake up my world today with Your salvation grace as I walk with You.
Acts 4:13 “And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other Name (Jesus) under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.
Scripture reading for February 22nd: Romans 10
Key Scriptures: Romans 10:8-13 “But what does it say? “The Word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart? (that is, the Word of faith that we proclaim); because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. For the Scripture says, “Everyone who believes in Him will not be put to shame.” For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing His riches on all who call on Him. For everyone who calls on the Lord will be saved.””
Our salvation, whether Jew or Gentile, is based on faith. We believe in our heart and confess with our mouth that “Jesus is Lord” and God gives us His righteousness. This puts everyone on the same level ground. God is not partial to a certain race or a particular group or religion. God looks at the heart of each person and can see faith or unbelief. This is not just an intellectual process where a person acknowledges with his mind. He listens to each person’s words of confession and knows if the “Jesus is Lord” comes from the heart. When faith is found, His riches are freely given to everyone who calls on His Holy Name!
Psalm 145:1-2 “I will extol You, my God and King, and bless Your Name forever and ever. Every day I will bless you and praise Your Name forever and ever.”
Faith confession and prayer: I believe with all my heart in Jesus Christ, Son of God. Jesus Christ is my Lord! Help me to clearly proclaim the way of salvation to all who You put in my path. May the Lordship of Jesus be visible in my attitudes and actions as well as my words.
Acts 4:12 “And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other Name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”
Scripture reading for January 14th: 2nd Timothy 3
Key Scriptures: 2nd Timothy 3:12-17 “Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, while evil people and impostors will go on from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.”
Paul reminded Timothy over and over that those following Jesus and applying God’s Word to their lives would not be universally loved and accepted. The world was full of evil and people under evil’s influence and deception. This would increase as the world population increased but should not affect how believers lived. They must hold on firmly to the basic truths of Scripture. God breathed out the Scriptures and through them man can become wise for salvation through faith in Jesus Christ. Scripture is profitable for reproof–addressing wrong-doing and sin, for correction–changing course, and for illumination of our path through this increasingly evil world. God’s Word will equip believers for every good work and brings eternal profit!
Psalm 119:14-15 “In the way of Your testimonies I delight as much as in all riches. I will meditate on Your precepts and fix my eyes on Your ways.”
Faith confession and prayer: Lord Jesus, thank You for enduring suffering and teaching Your followers that suffering would come to them in an increasingly evil world. I will study Your Word and faithfully remind my brothers and sisters how profitable it is to become equipped and complete. Help me to rejoice when persecutions come.
Luke 6:22-23 “Blessed are you when people hate you and when they exclude you and revile you and spurn your name as evil, on account of the Son of Man! Rejoice in that day, and leap for joy, for behold, your reward is great in heaven; for so their fathers did to the prophets.”
Scripture reading for January 13th: 2nd Timothy 2
Key Scriptures: 2nd Timothy 2:8-10;14-15 “Remember Jesus Christ, risen from the dead, the offspring of David, as preached in my Gospel, for which I am suffering, bound with chains as a criminal. But the Word of God is not bound! Therefore I endure everything for the sake of the elect, that they also may obtain the salvation that is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory.” . . .”Remind them of these things, and charge them before God not to quarrel about words, which does no good, but only ruins the hearers. Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the Word of truth.”
Paul’s reminder to Timothy continues as he wrote to him from prison in Rome and would soon suffer martyrdom. He calls to his remembrance Jesus Christ, risen from the dead, son of David, Son of God. Paul had unashamedly preached Jesus Christ and was now suffering and bound by chains. But Paul reminded Timothy not to be ashamed of his imprisonment or to fear his own. The Word of God was not chained and was producing the fruit of salvation and eternal glory in those who would receive. Paul encouraged Timothy to preach clearly the Word of God to his hearers and to continually present himself to God as His workman. God’s grace would enable him to rightly preach the whole truth and not be ashamed at Christ’s appearing. He wanted Timothy to hear “Well done, faithful servant!”
Psalm 126:5-6 “Those who sow in tears shall reap with shouts of joy. He who goes out weeping, bearing the seed for sowing, shall come home with shouts of joy, bringing his sheaves with him.”
Faith confession and prayer: Lord Jesus, I will endure suffering for the sake of sharing the Seed of Your Word bringing salvation and eternal glory to those lost and in darkness. Keep my mind and heart focused on You alone! May the “unchained” Word go forth from me turning many to You!
Daniel 12:3 “And those who are wise shall shine like the brightness of the sky above; and those who turn many to righteousness, like the stars forever and ever.”
Scripture reading for September 24th: Habakkuk; 2nd Corinthians 7
Key Scriptures: 2nd Corinthians 7:8-11 “For even if I made you grieve with my letter, I do not regret it–though I did regret it, for I see that that letter grieved you, though only for a while. As it is, I rejoice, not because you were grieved, but because you were grieved into repenting. For you felt a godly grief, so that you suffered no loss through us. For godly grief produces a repentance that leads to salvation without regret, whereas worldly grief produces death. For see what earnestness this godly grief has produced in you, but also what eagerness to clear yourselves, what indignation, what fear, what longing, what zeal, what punishment! At every point you have proved yourselves innocent in the matter.”
Paul had written plainly to the Corinthians this second time to appeal to them to forgive a brother who had been disciplined for sexual sins. He had some regrets at first, that he might offend them, but he ended up rejoicing when their godly grief over this brother’s sin caused him and them to repent and do the right thing. Worldly grief leads only to death–sorrow for sin alone won’t bring forgiveness and life. Godly sorrow leads to repentance and true transformation.
Faith confession and prayer: Lord Jesus, help me to receive correction with grace and humility and true repentance. May I not shrink from godly correction of one who may need to experience mercy by repentance.
Habakkuk 3:12-13 “You marched through the earth in fury; You threshed the nations in anger. You went out for the salvation of Your people, for the salvation of Your anointed.”
Scripture reading for August 25th: Isaiah 17-19, Psalm 62, 1st Corinthians 1
Key Scriptures: 1st Corinthians 1:21-25 “For since, in the wisdom of God, the world did not know God through wisdom, it pleased God through the folly of what we preach to save those who believe. For Jews demand signs and Greeks seek wisdom, but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles, but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. For the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.”
Paul’s letter to the Corinthian church, which he had founded by preaching there for over two years, was written to help correct some wrong doctrine caused by false teachers and to recenter them on Jesus Christ and the Gospel. This church had both Jews and Gentiles. The Gentile Greeks used intellectual pursuits to find God and the Jews were seeking supernatural signs. But Paul preached Jesus Christ crucified as his central message. Those who humbly listened and received, found God’s wisdom in Jesus Christ and the supernatural life He offers.
Psalm 62:7 “On God rests my salvation and my glory; my mighty Rock, my Refuge is God.”
Faith confession and prayer: Lord Jesus, I have found wisdom in Jesus Christ, my Salvation, my Rock, my Glory, and my Refuge! Help me to preach Jesus Christ and Him crucified and resurrected to the nations, as You have planned!
Isaiah 19:21 “And the Lord will make Himself known to the Egyptians, and the Egyptians will know the Lord in that day and worship with sacrifice and offering, and they will make vows to the Lord and perform them.”
Scripture reading for August 21st: Isaiah 11-13, Psalm 118, Matthew 27
Key Scriptures: Matthew 27:45-51 “Now from the sixth hour there was darkness over all the land until the ninth hour. And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Eli Eli, lema sabachthani?” that is, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?” And some of the bystanders, hearing it, said, “This man is calling Elijah.” And one of them at once ran and took a sponge, filled it with sour wine, and put it on a reed and gave it to Him to drink. But the others said, “Wait, let us see whether Elijah will come to save Him.” And Jesus cried out again with a loud voice and yielded up His spirit. And behold, the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. And the earth shook, and the rocks were split.”
The curtain that covered the Holy of Holies was thick and blocked the entrance to the mercy seat and cherubim that guarded it. As Jesus endured His darkest hours here on earth, He suffered death and the feeling of separation from God that it brings. He cried out in anguish to His Father, feeling forsaken and fulfilling prophesy. His final breath yielded up His spirit. The temple curtain (veil) ripped from top to bottom! Access to God was granted through Jesus’ broken body to the Holy of Holies! Amazing grace! His Righteousness is our gate!
Psalm 118:19-20 “Open to me the gates of righteousness, that I may enter through them and give thanks to the Lord. This is the gate of the Lord; the righteous shall enter through it.”
Faith confession and prayer: Lord Jesus, thank You for Your costly sacrifice, taking my place on Your cross. You opened the gate of righteousness and I thank You forever and ever!
Isaiah 12:2 “Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and will not be afraid; for the Lord God is my strength and my song, and He has become my Salvation.”
Scripture reading for June 19th: Song of Solomon 1-3, Psalm 72, 1st Thessalonians 5
Key Scriptures: 1st Thessalonians 5:8-11 “But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, having put on the breastplate of faith and love, and for a helmet the hope of salvation, for God has not destined us for wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us so that whether we are awake or asleep we might live with Him. therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.”
Paul encouraged the Thessalonians to live in the light as children of the light. Christ will come again soon. Whether awake (alive) or asleep (body resting in the grave) we live with Him and for Him. God has not destined His people for wrath but for salvation by grace through faith in Jesus Christ. We should encourage each other to continue in faith as we wait for Christ’s return.
Song of Songs 2:4 “He brought me to the banqueting house, and His banner over me was love.”
Faith confession and prayer: Lord Jesus, thank You for the light of Your Word and Your love shed abroad in my heart by the Holy Spirit. Fill me with Your Holy Spirit and encouragement for others. I long to be with You.
Psalm 72:19 “Blessed be His glorious Name forever; may the whole earth be filled with His glory! Amen and Amen!”
Scripture reading for March 31st: Joshua 5-8, Psalm 14, Luke 15
Key Scriptures: Joshua 6:23-25 “So the young men who had been spies went in and brought out Rahab and her father and mother and brothers and all who belonged to her. And they brought all her relatives and put them outside the camp of Israel. And they burned the city with fire, and everything in it. Only the silver and gold, the vessels of bronze and of iron, they put into the treasury of the house of the Lord. But Rahab the prostitute and her father’s household and all who belonged to her, Joshua saved alive. And she has lived in Israel to this day, because she hid the messengers whom Joshua sent to spy out Jericho.”
Joshua entered the promised land and faced Jericho. God gave him a plan to take the city. But the spies had been hidden by Rahab and she had tied the scarlet cord on her window and gathered her family inside. Joshua give instructions to the spies to go and bring her and her family out before destroying the city. God delights in saving the lost who come to Him by faith!
Psalm 14:7 “Oh, that salvation for Israel would come out of Zion! When the Lord restores the fortunes of His people, Let Jacob rejoice, let Israel be glad.”
Faith confession and prayer: Lord, thank You for Your great compassion for the lost sinner and for making provision through faith. Help me to bring many out of strongholds of sin into the safety of Your covenant through the Gospel!
Luke 15:6-7 “. . ., rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep that was lost. Just so, I tell you, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance.”
Scripture reading for February 4th: Exodus 10-12, Ephesians 2
Key Scriptures: Exodus 12:40-42 “The time that the people of Israel lived in Egypt was 430 years, on that very day, all the hosts of the Lord went out from the land of Egypt. It was a night of watching by the Lord, to bring them out of the land of Egypt; so this same night is a night of watching kept to the Lord by all the people of Israel throughout their generations.”
Our salvation and deliverance from sin and death is not an accident. It did not come from man’s works or schemes, but was a sovereign act of God prepared beforehand and announced through the prophets. On an exact day predetermined by God, the Israelites were brought out of Egypt through the grace of God by a blood sacrifice. So Paul wrote to the Ephesians, that God’s grace alone had brought them salvation through faith in His Firstborn Son’s sacrifice. God watched over it all and now we watch in amazement as He completes the work in us.
Faith Confession and prayer: I simply rest in the grace given me by trusting in Jesus Christ and His shed blood. I ask our Lord to guide me daily in fulfillment of the works He also has prepared for me as I wait and watch for the fullness of time and Christ’s return!
Ephesians 2:8-10 “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.”