January 31 Devotional

Exodus 35.1-29

In today’s Bible reading, Exodus 35.1-29, one part is about the making of the Tabernacle for God to live among His people. How does this relate to us today? Can we find a relationship between the Tabernacle and Christian Church? In one sense, we can find anything we want, provided our imaginations are lively enough and correctly stimulated.  But it seems we can safely arrive at some close associations between the Tabernacle of God and the Church for which Jesus died. The apostles Paul and Peter compared the church to the house of God (Eph. 2.21-22; 1 Tim. 3.15; 1 Pet. 2-5). Some today call their place of worship the house of God. The apostle Paul calls the Christian the temple of God (1 Cor. 6.19; see also 2 Cor. 6.16).) and then draws some serious moral and ethical conclusions.

Yet we should also note some differences. The people could not gather inside the Tabernacle, and even the priests needed to observe the restrictions made by God. The New Testament household of God, where He also lives (Eph. 2.21-22), need not observe such restrictions.  God provides the church an advanced access Himself, which will one day result in a face-to-face permanent fellowship (Rev. 21.3). In this sense the Old Testament Tabernacle reflected the imperfect condition between God and us, a condition that dramatically improves in the church.

God will one day remove all obstacles and restrictions to His presence. The apostle John wrote in  Revelation 22.3 that the very “throne of God and of the Lamb will be in the city, and His servants will serve Him.” He saw no temple there, he wrote in Revelation 21.22 because “the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple.”

January 30 Devotional

Luke 20:1-47
The chief priest, and the scribes were consistently trying to challenge the Lord’s authority, but when you are measured against the perfection of the law, iniquity is made abundantly obvious. Knowing Jesus helps give us insight in to these things, but it is up to us as servants of our Lord to use this gift to pray for those who need it, that the peace of our Lord may rest on their souls and be filled with the joy of salvation. As you go through your day today, ask the Lord to do this for those who have need of a savior, so you may rejoice with a new brother or sister in Christ, not your will but His will be done.
Praise be the Lord who with a word spoke everything in to existence, for He is my GOD! Amen.

January 29 Devotional

Luke 19:28-40

This is a list of the last week of our Lord Jesus Christ’s ministry.

Sunday—Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem
Monday—Cleansing the temple
Tuesday—Controversies with the Jewish leaders
Wednesday—Apparently a day of rest
Thursday—Preparation for Passover
Friday—Trial and Crucifixion
Saturday—Jesus rests in the tomb
Sunday—Jesus raised from the dead

It has always amazed me how Christ went into Jerusalem with such an amazing entry and with the crowds saying “Blessed is the King who comes in the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory in the highest.” By the end of the week the crowd chanted “Crucify, crucify him!.” Walk the scriptures with Christ this week and try to envision the steps of his final week of ministry before the cross. Take comfort in knowing that Christ went to Jerusalem for you and I that we might have a relationship with the father.
Wiersbe, W. W. (1996). The Bible exposition commentary (Lk 19:28). Wheaton, IL: Victor Books.

January 28 Devotional

“The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?”  Psalm 27:1 (ESV)

I can think of no better words to start a week with!  They speak to the incredible sovereignty of our God.  They speak to our never ending dependence on His provision.  And, they speak to the faith we must face each and every day of our lives with – a faith that continues to rest in the grace and mercy that God continues to exercise so freely.  So, may these words be the song of your heart as you embark on each new day and each new week of your life.

January 27 Devotional

For your name’s sake, O Lord, pardon my guilt, for it is great.
Psalm 25

How does God forgiving our sin glorify God? How is it that the psalmist prays “For your name’s sake… pardon my guilt.” So the pardon of our sin lifts up the name of God? YES! When we experience the pardon of God through Christ Jesus, we can’t help but tell others how great God is. His name is praised through people who’ve experienced great pardon.
Now if this pardon was our doing, we would receive the praise. If we earned forgiveness of sin, then our name would be lifted up. But when God goes to such great lengths to pardon our sin by sending His unique and only Son to live, die, and rise to pardon us, His name becomes a sweet song in our hearts. His name is lifted up as the only God and Savior.

January 25 Devotional

Luke 16:31—He said to them, if they do not hear Moses and the prophets, neither will they be convinced if someone should rise from the dead.

Luke 17:10—When you have done all that you were commanded, say, we are unworthy servants, we have only done what was our duty.

The rich man, who lived all his live with many material blessings, now finds himself in Hades, the place of eternal torment.  And he makes a reasonable request from father Abraham—please send someone to my family to warn them about this place of torment that they should not come here.  But notice father Abraham’s response.   “If they do not hear Moses and the prophets , neither will they be convinced if someone would rise from the dead.”

Unfortunately, this is still true today.  Many do not want to hear the Jesus has risen from the dead.  Many others hear yet do not believe.  One day they will be like the rich man, put into the place of eternal torment, separated from God forever.  But the truth that many will not believe should not keep us from proclaiming the truth that Jesus indeed has risen from the dead.  Would we be like the rich man that if we were in that place of torment, would we not want someone to go tell and warn our love ones?  And as we go and proclaim the good news of Jesus, is there any reason for us to boast?  Or should we just say—We are unworthy servants, we have only done what was our duty.

January 24 Devotional

Psalm 23.1

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.  ESV

The Lord is my personal shepherd and caregiver. He gives me everything I will ever needPPVB

 King David, the writer of this Psalm, began by introducing the first word picture that describes the relationship that God has with us with the tender heart of a shepherd has for his flock. During his early youth David had been a shepherd watching his father’s flock, so he was very familiar with this picture. Comparing the Lord with that of a shepherd, the word “my” emphasizes how deeply personal and close was his relationship with his Lord.  We also have this personal and up close relationship with our Lord. He would not have it any other way.  Just think we have a personal and close relationship with the Almighty God of the universe. Who has the power to do anything He wishes and He chooses us to have a relationship with Him that is personal and close.

Praise the Lord!

What is so amazing is that in Israel of old, a shepherd’s work was considered the lowest rung on the social ladder. They would actually live with their sheep twenty-four hours a day with unwavering devotion, day and night, both in bad and good weather. They had to nurture, guide, and protect their sheep. The shepherd had to assume full responsibility for the needs and safety of his flock; even risking his own life for their protection. The good news is God, our Lord, is our Shepherd. He has chosen to have a personal relationship with us. We are His sheep, His people. He is everything we will ever need. He is our constant protector. He loves us with an unconditional love. We can truly say with King David,The Lord is my personal shepherd and caregiver.

Because of the greatness of God and His constant, loving care for us, David concluded, He gives me everything I will ever need. Left to themselves, sheep lack everything, being totally helpless and defenseless animals that cannot care for themselves. But under the watchful care of the shepherd all their personal needs are abundantly met. So it was for David, as well as for us who are under the watch care of the Lord who is all-satisfying for life, has unlimited supplies, and is unchanging in all His ways. For all of us, precious to Him, He gives us everything we will ever need.  We will lack nothing that is good and necessary for enjoying life here and in Heaven to its fullest.