Scripture reading for October 5th: James 1
Key Scriptures: James 1: 2-8 “Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, Who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.”
James was the half-brother of Jesus and the pastor of the church in Jerusalem. He was a man of prayer and some commentators say had the nickname of “camel knees” from spending time in prayer. As he wrote this letter to the church, James encouraged the believers to embrace trials of various kinds. He knew that this was part of being a follower of Christ and that these trials, if properly embraced, would produce spiritual growth in faithfulness and patience. During these trials, believers were encouraged to pray to God for wisdom and to expect answers from a Father Who would give generously to those having faith. He warned them about doubting and being double-minded. This would not bring steadfastness, but instability and a tossing and turbulence to life liken to that of a wave of the sea in a strong wind. His Mentor was his brother, Jesus Christ!
James 1: 12 “Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him.”
Faith confession and prayer: Father God, forgive me for not counting it all joy when life’s various trials come. Fill me with fresh wisdom to discern Your plan and purpose in each trial and to grow in faithfulness and Christ’s character. Thank You for Your generosity in giving wisdom to those who will humbly ask for it. I desire the crown of life for me and those I love!
James 1:19 “Know this, my beloved brothers (and sisters): be quick to hear, slow to speak, and slow to anger; for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God.”
Scripture reading for May 24th: Ephesians 1
Key Scriptures: Ephesians 1:7-11 “In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace, which He lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight, making known to us the mystery of His will, according to His purpose, which He set forth in Christ as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in Him, things in heaven and things on earth. In Him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of Him Who works all things according to the counsel of His will, so that we who were the first to hope in Christ might be to the praise of His glory.”
God does all things extravagantly because He is loaded with riches! He doesn’t lack anything. He needs nothing. He has an abundant supply of everything that His children might need and is a loving Father Who provides. Paul states that our redemption through Christ’s blood came from the riches of God’s grace. He has all wisdom and insight and He lavishes that upon us unmerited favor as the way all can be saved by simple faith in His Son. He reveals to us the mystery of His will to unite as one in Christ and in the fullness of time to bring all things together in heaven and earth. Through Christ He lavishes upon His children an inheritance that will be to the eternal praise of God’s glory! Amen!
Ephesians 1:16-17 “I do not cease to give thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers, that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of Glory, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him,”
Faith confession and prayer: Thank You Father God and Lord Jesus for our amazing and lavish inheritance and gifts through Your love and mercy in taking our place on Calvary’s cross. Grant me a fresh infilling of the Spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Jesus Christ that I might be conformed to His image and share the Good News of Your lavish riches found in Jesus Christ and His shed blood.
Colossians 2:2-3 “. .that their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, to reach all the riches of full assurance of understanding and the knowledge of God’s mystery, which is Christ, in who are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.”
Scripture reading for March 4th: Luke 2
Key Scriptures: Luke 2:46-51 “After three days they found Him in the temple sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. And all who heard Him were amazed at His understanding and His answers. And when His parents saw Him, they were astonished. And His mother said to Him, “Son, why have You treated us so? Behold, Your father and I have been searching for you in great distress.” And He said to them, “Why were you looking for Me? Did you not know that I must be in My Father’s house?” And they did not understand the saying that He spoke to them. And He went down with them and came to Nazareth and was submissive to them and His mother treasured up all these things in her heart.“
There is not much written in the Gospels concerning Jesus’ early years. This short passage from Luke’s Gospel offers a glimpse of Jesus as a child of about twelve years of age visiting the temple during Passover week. Jesus sat with the teachers and leaders and listened and asked questions. He amazed all who heard Him in both His questions and answers. His mom and dad had already left for home when they found He was not with them. When they returned and found Him in the temple, His mother rebuked Him for causing them distress. Jesus simply stated that He must be in His Father’s house! This statement did not bring understanding and He went with them submissive and obediently.
Luke 2:52 “And Jesus increased in wisdom and in stature and in favor with God and man.”
Faith confession and prayer: Lord Jesus, thank You for being with me as I am now Your house and helping me to grow in wisdom as I walk with You. Give me favor with You and with men, that I might accomplish Your will on earth as in heaven.
Proverbs 1:6-8 “For the Lord gives wisdom; from His mouth come knowledge and understanding; He stores up sound wisdom for the upright; He is a shield to those who walk in integrity, guarding the oaths of justice and watching over the way of His saints.”
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 June 3rd: 1st Kings 4, Proverbs 1-2, Psalm 43, Romans 9
Key Scriptures: Romans 9:1-5 “I am speaking the truth in Christ–I am not lying; my conscience bears witness in the Holy Spirit–that I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart. For I could wish that I myself were accursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my brothers, my kinsmen according to the flesh. They are Israelites, and to them belong the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the worship, and the promises. To them belong the patriarchs, and from their race, according to the flesh, is the Christ, who is God over all, blessed forever. Amen.”
Paul shared with the Romans his heart for the Israelites, his own brothers. He identified with them in their lost condition, having been lost himself at one time and proud of his heritage. The Jews had great blessings through the patriarchs and their relationship with God. God had promised them eternal blessings through covenant. But they had rejected Christ Jesus, One of their own, Who was God over all men. Intercession is the heart of God and the Holy Spirit in us. God acts when His people identify with His heart to save all men and they ask Him for their salvation.
Psalm 43:3 “Send out Your light and Your Truth; let them lead me; let them bring me to Your holy hill and to Your dwelling.”
Faith confession and prayer: Lord Jesus, help me to learn to cooperate with Your Holy Spirit in intercession for those in need of a relationship with You. Thank You that You desire all men to be saved and come to a knowledge of the Truth!
Proverbs 2:6 “For the Lord gives wisdom; from His mouth come knowledge and understanding; . . .”
Scripture reading for December 4th: Revelation 4, Psalm 111-12, Proverbs 26
Key Scriptures: Revelation 4:8-11 “And the four living creatures, each of them with six wings, are full of eyes all around and within, and day and night they never cease to say, “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty, Who was and is and is to come!” And whenever the living creatures give glory and honor and thanks to Him Who is seated on the throne and worship Him Who lives forever and ever, the twenty-four elders fall down before Him Who is seated on the throne and worship Him who lives forever and ever. They cast their crowns before the throne, saying, “Worthy are You, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for You created all things, and by Your will they existed and were created.”
John was caught up through a door in heaven to behold the throne of God and the worship going on there. Magnificent living creatures full of eyes and wings worshiped, and the twenty-four elders followed their example. The One on the Throne is “Holy, Holy, Holy.” All creation belongs to Him and He alone is worthy of worship.
Faith Confession: I look forward to being caught up to heaven and to behold My Lord and participate in the worship there. God Almighty and Jesus Christ are worthy of all glory, honor, and power, for by their Wisdom I have an eternal home.
Proverbs 24:3 “By wisdom a house is built, and by understanding it is established; by knowledge the rooms are filled with all precious and pleasant riches.”
Scripture reading for November 8th: 1st Peter 2, Psalm 75-6, Proverbs 8
Key Scriptures: 1st Peter 2:20-24 “For what credit is it if, when you sin and are beaten for it, you endure? But if you do good and suffer for it you endure, this is a gracious thing in the sight of God. For to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you might follow in His steps. He committed no sin, neither was deceit found in His mouth. When He was reviled, he did not revile in return; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but continued entrusting Himself to Him who judges justly. He Himself bore our sins in His body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness.”
Peter commended those who were suffering for their good deeds and because of their identification with Jesus Christ. He said that their endurance was graciously noted by God. Why? Because suffering believers are following Christ’s example. He never suffered because He sinned, but because He was righteous and was identifying with us. In Him we have the power of sin broken and ability to live and even suffer in righteousness. His grace through the cross sets us free.
Faith Confession: I embrace the example of Jesus Christ for the grace to suffer for doing His will and wisdom to live for righteously.
Proverbs 8:10-11 “Take My instruction instead of silver and knowledge rather than choice gold, for wisdom is better than jewels, and all that you may desire cannot compare with her.”
Scripture reading for October 17th: Hebrews 4, Psalm 58, Proverbs 23
Key Scriptures: Hebrews 4:14-16 “Since we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.
The writer of Hebrews saw Jesus Christ as our great High Priest. He was able to come to our aid, because He had been tempted in all ways like other human beings. Unlike other humans, Jesus Christ was without sin. Because of this, death and the grave could not hold Him and He was resurrected to the right hand of God. We can have confidence to draw near to Him on the throne of grace and find help and mercy anytime we need it.
Faith confession: I have a great High Priest, Jesus Christ, who understands my weakness and is able to come to my aid. I can go to Him anytime and have confidence in His wisdom, instruction, mercy and help.
Proverbs 23:22-23 “Listen to your father who gave you life, and do not despise your mother when she is old. Buy truth, and do not sell it; by wisdom, instruction, and understanding.”
Scripture reading for September 11th: Colossians 4, Psalm 32, Proverbs 28
Key Scriptures: Colossians 4:2-6 “Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it, with thanksgiving. At the same time, pray also for us, that God may open to us a door for the Word, to declare the mystery of Christ, on account of which I am in prison–that I may make it clear, which is how I ought to speak. Walk in wisdom towards outsiders, making the best use of the time. Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.”
Paul’s final instructions contained a call to prayer for the church and for him and his ministry as a prisoner in a Roman jail. He never asked to get out, but for open doors for God’s Word and boldness to declare the mystery of Christ Jesus the Lord. He wanted to make it clear and know when to speak and what to say to each person, not wasting any precious time. Watchful prayers and faithful witnessing will bring God-directed results!
Faith Confession: Lord, help me to watch and pray for missionaries and evangelists who are preaching the Word. Give me open doors and boldness as I preach Your unchanging Word. Season my speech with the saltiness of the Gospel.
Proverbs 28:20 “A faithful man will abound with blessings, but whoever hastens to be rich will not go unpunished.”
Scripture reading for September 5th: Philippians 4, Psalm 28, Proverbs 24
Key Scriptures: Philippians 4:17-20 “Not that I seek the gift, but I seek the fruit that increases to your credit. I have received full payment, and more. I am well supplied, having received from Epaphroditus the gifts you sent, a fragrant offering, a sacrifice acceptable and pleasing to God. And my God will supply every need of yours according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus. To our God and Father be glory forever and ever. Amen.
Paul closed his letter to the Philippians thanking them for sharing and sending offerings to help him. They were one of the only churches to do so at this time. He had received their gift and expressed his thanks, stating that they were “a fragrant offering” and they pleased God as well. He also shared that their gifts would increase the fruit of souls won and reached and that would also credit to their account. In turn, they could count on God meeting all their needs through Christ’s unfathomable riches! Amen!
Faith Confession: I choose to be generous and give to the work of our Lord, tithes and offerings. I am thankful for fruit that will bring glory to our Lord Jesus. My God will supply all my needs if I am generous towards His kingdom.
Proverbs 24:3-4 “By wisdom a house is built, and by understanding it is established; by knowledge the rooms are filled with all precious and pleasant riches.”