The Lord’s people must not be afraid to stand up for Him …

Jeremiah 52:1-34; Titus 1:1-16; Psalm 119:105-112 The final chapter of Jeremiah speaks of the fall of Jerusalem, followed by captivity in Babylon. Difficulties face God’s people in every generation: “There are many rebellious people ... “ (Titus 1:10). The Lord’s people must not be afraid to stand up for Him (Titus 1:11). Whatever others may …

Continue reading The Lord’s people must not be afraid to stand up for Him …

The Name of Jesus Christ is the Name of our salvation …

More notes can be found at my One Year Bible blog. 2 Samuel 11:1-12:31; Acts 4:1-22; Psalm 71:1-8 “David pleaded with God for the child”, born of his adultery with Bathsheba, but “the child died” (2 Samuel 12:18). David prayed that “the Lord may be gracious to me and let the child live” (2 Samuel 12:22). The …

Continue reading The Name of Jesus Christ is the Name of our salvation …

How are we to die? … Dying in shame … dying in glory …

2 Samuel 16:15-18:18; Acts 7:20-43; Psalm 72:1-20 How are we to die? This is an important question. There’s a difference between dying in shame and dying in glory. The death of Absalom (2 Samuel 18) is a shameful death. The death of Stephen (Acts 7) is a glorious triumph. Stephen’s death is preceded by a …

Continue reading How are we to die? … Dying in shame … dying in glory …

Jesus – our Saviour and Lord …

Daily Devotional Readings

Joseph makes himself known to his brothers: “I am your brother Joseph, the one you sold into Egypt!” (Genesis 45:4). Jesus makes Himself known to His disciples (Matthew 16:13-17). In Joseph’s self-identification, there is a statement about why God had sent him into Egypt – “it was to save lives that God sent me ahead of you … God sent me ahead of you to preserve for you a remnant on earth and to save your lives by a great deliverance” (Genesis 45:5,7). Jesus was sent by God to call out the “Church” by an even greater deliverance – deliverance from “the gates of hell” (Matthew 16:18). Joseph said, “God has made me lord of all Egypt” (Genesis 45:8).  Concerning Jesus, Scripture declares that God has made Him Lord of all – He has “the keys of the Kingdom…

View original post 123 more words

Salvation – the removal of sin and the restoration of glory …

Zechariah 1:1-4:14; 3 John 1-14; Psalm 139:11-16  The removal of sin (Zechariah 3:4,9) and the restoration of glory: Here, we have a great description of salvation, wiping out the sin of the past, giving an anticipatory glimpse of the glory to come. The past is forgiven. The future is promised. What about the present – …

Continue reading Salvation – the removal of sin and the restoration of glory …

Difficult situations can be turned around – to glorify God …

Ruth 1:1-2:23; John 9:1-34; Proverbs 12:8-17 Difficult situations can be turned around to glorify God (John 9:3). The story of Ruth is the story of mourning turned to rejoicing. In John 9, we have darkness turned into light, blindness to sight. This is the story of “amazing grace” – “One thing I do know. I …

Continue reading Difficult situations can be turned around – to glorify God …

Christ is my Rock and my Salvation.

Ruth 3:1-4:22; John 9:35-10:21; Psalms 62:1-12 The book of Ruth ends by locating Ruth within the family tree of David, the shepherd-king. He, in his turn, forms part of the family tree of Christ, “the Good Shepherd” (John 10:11), the “King of kings” (Revelation 19:16). David, the shepherd of Israel, pointed away from himself to …

Continue reading Christ is my Rock and my Salvation.

God’s Kingdom will prevail over the kingdom of Satan …

Daniel 3:13-4:18; 2 Peter 2:1-22; Proverbs 29:1-9 “The Most High is sovereign over the kingdom of men” (Daniel 4:17). It is a great comfort to know that God is sovereign. It gives strength in the midst of the conflict. It’s an unequal conflict – God’s Kingdom will prevail over the kingdom of Satan. We must …

Continue reading God’s Kingdom will prevail over the kingdom of Satan …

God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son …

Daniel 11:36-12:13; 1 John 5:1-21; Psalm 139:1-10 Scripture speaks of “the time of wrath” (Daniel 11:36), “a time of distress such as has not happened from the beginning of nations until then” (Daniel 12:1). For some, this will bring “shame and everlasting contempt.” Through the grace of God, others will receive “everlasting life” (Daniel 12:20). …

Continue reading God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son …

Looking beyond what’s happening to us right now …

Job 1:1-3:26; Matthew 18:10-35; Psalm 16:1-11 In the life of faith, we will face many difficulties. For Job, there was great suffering. For Jesus’ disciples, there was the pain of loss when Jesus was taken from them. For all of God’s people, there is something better still to come: “You will fill me with joy …

Continue reading Looking beyond what’s happening to us right now …

The removal of sin and the restoration of glory …

Zechariah 1:1-4:14; 3 John 1-14; Psalm 139:11-16 The removal of sin (Zechariah 3:4,9) and the restoration of glory: Here, we have a great description of salvation, wiping out the sin of the past, giving an anticipatory glimpse of the glory to come. The past is forgiven. The future is promised. What about the present - …

Continue reading The removal of sin and the restoration of glory …

God has a message for His Church. It is the message of the Spirit …

God is at work in the life of both the Church and the nation. He has a message for His Church. It is the message of the Spirit: “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches” (Revelation 2:29; Revelation 3:6). This message of the Lord concerns His Church. …

Continue reading God has a message for His Church. It is the message of the Spirit …

The darkness of sin … and the light of God’s salvation

Genesis 19 is a chapter that's full of the darkness of sin. The destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah is followed by the sordid episode with Lot and his daughters. Sin leads to judgment. That's the lesson of Sodom and Gomorrah. sin leads to judgment. we see this in the birth of these two illicitly conceived …

Continue reading The darkness of sin … and the light of God’s salvation

Keeping the Lord at the centre of all that we do … (One Year Bible: Day 58 – Leviticus 1:1-3:17; Mark 9:33-10:12; Psalm 27:1-6)

The offerings were to be “made to the Lord”. They were to be “pleasing to the Lord.” These recurring phrases emphasize the importance of keeping the Lord at the centre of all that we do. We are not to argue about who is the greatest (Mark 9:34). There is one Name that is above every …

Continue reading Keeping the Lord at the centre of all that we do … (One Year Bible: Day 58 – Leviticus 1:1-3:17; Mark 9:33-10:12; Psalm 27:1-6)

Each day, we stand between the past and the future …

Each day, we stand between the past and the future. In our prayers, we call upon God to “remember” (Nehemiah 13:14,22,29,31). There are two different kinds of ‘remembering’ here. God remembers His faithful servants. He also remembers those who have been unfaithful. As we face the future, we must be guided by both the Gospel …

Continue reading Each day, we stand between the past and the future …

Holiness And Honesty

Deuteronomy 21:1-22:30; Luke 16:1-18; Proverbs 9:13-18 Holiness and honesty are two qualities which are to characterize the life of the Christian. The 'laws' in Deuteronomy stress the importance of holiness. Jesus, in His parable of the shrewd manager, emphasizes the importance of honesty - "Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted …

Continue reading Holiness And Honesty

By the power of the Holy Spirit …

Isaiah 10:20-13:22; 2 Corinthians 8:16-9:5; Psalm 105:37-45 Jesus Christ was filled with “the Spirit of the Lord” (Isaiah 11:2). It is by the power of the Holy Spirit that we are to live for Christ. As we give ourselves to the Lord in service, our first priority is “to honour the Lord Himself.” We do this …

Continue reading By the power of the Holy Spirit …

A lifestyle, governed by heavenly priorities

In Genesis 14:18-20, we read about the remarkable appearance of the mysterious figure, Melchizedek. Here, we have the first suggestion of tithing - "Then Abram gave Him a tenth of everything" (Genesis 14:20). This is not a legalistic practice. It is set in the context of grace and worship. Abram's tithing follows on from this: …

Continue reading A lifestyle, governed by heavenly priorities

Out of small beginnings, great blessing can come …

Following Abram's rash action of fathering a child, Ishmael, by his maidservant, Hagar, we see, in Genesis 17, God's determination to bless him and to make him a blessing to many people. God will not be put off by our objections (Genesis 17:15-19). To such objections, He gives this answer: "Is anything too hard for …

Continue reading Out of small beginnings, great blessing can come …

There is no god who can compare with the Lord.

2 Kings 16:1-17:41; Acts 26:24-27:12; Psalm 81:8-16 “They followed worthless idols and themselves became worthless” (2 Kings 17:15). There is no god who can compare with the Lord (Psalm 81:9-10). He alone is worthy of praise. He alone gives value to our lives by bringing fulfilment to them: “Open wide your mouth and I will …

Continue reading There is no god who can compare with the Lord.

The Word of the Lord came to me …

Zechariah 5:1-8:23; Jude 1-25; Psalm 139:17-24  Again and again, in Zechariah, we find the phrase, “the Word of the Lord (Almighty) came to me” (Zechariah 6:9; Zechariah 7;1,4,8). Another recurring phrase, with similar meaning, is “This is what the Lord (Almighty) says” (Zechariah 6:12; Zechariah 8:3,4,6,7,9,14,20,23). The Word of revelation – This is the basis …

Continue reading The Word of the Lord came to me …

Deliver me from my enemies.

Judges 10:1-11:40; John 6:25-29; Psalm 59:1-8 “Deliver me from my enemies” (Psalm 59:1). The Psalmist had enemies. The people of Israel had enemies. Jesus had enemies. We have enemies. There will, however, be a Day of God’s judgment. There will be deliverance for the Lord’s people. No mercy will be shown to wicked traitors. The …

Continue reading Deliver me from my enemies.

Let us give thanks – with joy …

“At the dedication of the wall of Jerusalem”, the keynote of the service was joyful thanksgiving. They gathered together “to celebrate joyfully the dedication with songs of thanksgiving” (Nehemiah 12:27). “On that day they offered great sacrifices, rejoicing because God had given them great joy” (Nehemiah 12:43). They sang “songs of praise and thanksgiving to …

Continue reading Let us give thanks – with joy …

Closeness to God develops as we learn to delight in the Word of God …

Among many names and life-spans, there is this remarkable statement: "Enoch walked faithfully with God; then he was no more, because God took him away" (Genesis 5:24). This closeness to God develops as we learn to delight in the Word of God. Together with "Noah" who "found favour in the eyes of the Lord" (Genesis …

Continue reading Closeness to God develops as we learn to delight in the Word of God …

If there is to be delight in God’s Word, we must overcome doubt …

If there is to be delight in God's Word, we must overcome doubt. Satan is always saying, "Did God really say ...?" (Genesis 3:1). We must learn to say, "God did say" (Genesis 3:3). We must stand by this confession of faith in God and His Word. Satan will not give in easily. He will …

Continue reading If there is to be delight in God’s Word, we must overcome doubt …

Praise, Preaching and Prayer

1 Chronicles 22:2-23:32; 1 Corinthians 2:6-16; Psalm 91:9-16 The Temple was to be “built for the Name of the Lord”, “to praise the Lord” (1 Chronicles 22:19; 23:5). In the context of such worship - “thanking and praising the Lord” (1 Chronicles 23:30), the Word of God would be spoken “not in words taught by …

Continue reading Praise, Preaching and Prayer

The Gospel does not begin with man, reaching up to heaven …

Zechariah 12:1-14:21; Revelation 2:1-17: Proverbs 30:1-10  God “pours out … a spirit of supplication” upon His people. As a result of this, they look on Him, “the One they have pierced.” In doing so, they come to “a fountain … to cleanse them from sin and impurity” (Zechariah 12:10; Zechariah 13:1). Mourning for the One …

Continue reading The Gospel does not begin with man, reaching up to heaven …

Our hope is not in man. It is in the Lord.

1 Chronicles 19:1-22:1; 1 Corinthians 1:18-2:5; Psalm 91:1-8 David - “Let me fall into the hands of the Lord, for His mercy is very great; but do not let me fall into the hands of men” (1 Chronicles 20:13). Paul - “But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God …

Continue reading Our hope is not in man. It is in the Lord.

Jesus Christ – the sinless Son of God

Joshua 15:1-16:10; John 1:1-28; Psalm 53:1-6 Each tribe had its limited allotment of land. Jesus Christ, “the Word” who “was God”, “became flesh” (John 1:1,14). He accepted the limitations of being human. He was human, yet without sin. “There is no one who does good, not even one” (Psalm 53:1,3).  This is true of every human …

Continue reading Jesus Christ – the sinless Son of God

God has done great things for us.

Joshua 19:1-21:19; John 2:1-25; Psalm 54:1-7 What God did for His people, Israel, was very great. There is a striking contrast between their slavery in Egypt and their abundance in the promised land. God had multiplied His blessing upon them, just as Jesus did when He turned water into wine (John 2:1-11). If the blessing is to be …

Continue reading God has done great things for us.

Cast your cares on the Lord and He will sustain you.

Joshua 23:1-24:33; John 3:22-36; Psalm 55:12-23 The concluding message, preached by Joshua, is a call for the people to exalt the Lord. They make a definite and public commitment to the Lord. The Christ-centredness of real commitment to the Lord is summed up in the words of John the Baptist: “He must become greater; I must become less” …

Continue reading Cast your cares on the Lord and He will sustain you.

When the Gospel of God’s love reaches our hearts …

Judges 1:1-2:5; John 4:1-26; Proverbs 11:9-18 In John 4, we read about the overcoming of our enemies through the Gospel. “Jews do not associate with the Samaritans” (John 4:9). Jesus did associate with the Samaritan woman. The woman believed in Jesus. Many others believed in Him. By breaking down the barrier between Jews and Samaritans, Jesus was not …

Continue reading When the Gospel of God’s love reaches our hearts …

Many servants, one Saviour

Judges 2:6-3:31; John 4:27-42; Psalm 56:1-13 “The Lord raised up judges who saved them out of the hands of these raiders” (Judges 2:16). “This man really is the Saviour of the world” (John 4:42). God sends His servants to revive His people. God sent His Son to redeem His people. Revival comes “by the Spirit of the Lord” …

Continue reading Many servants, one Saviour

Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God – our Saviour

As we read of the testing of Abraham in regard to God's call for Isaac to be sacrificed, we have a hint of God's provision of Jesus Christ as the Saviour who was sacrificed for the sins of the world. By faith, Abraham says, "God himself will provide the lamb ... " (Genesis 2:8). "Abraham …

Continue reading Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God – our Saviour

God gives us “the wings of a dove” – to rise to higher things.

Joshua 21:20-22:34; John 3:1-21; Psalm 55:1-11 In all the social details of the division of the land, we must not lose sight of its spiritual basis (Joshua 21:43-45). The important thing is that God, and not man, receives the glory: “Do not rebel against the Lord or against us by building an altar for yourselves, other than …

Continue reading God gives us “the wings of a dove” – to rise to higher things.

Praising the Lord and being blessed by Him …

Daniel 1:1-2:23; 1 Peter 5:1-14; Psalm 134:1-3 Daniel’s praise, offered to God, in Daniel 2:20-23, highlights for us the direction from which blessing comes. It comes from above. What we do not have is given to us by God - “He gives” (Daniel 2:21), “You have given me” (Daniel 2:23). Daniel’s praise is echoed in …

Continue reading Praising the Lord and being blessed by Him …

Walking in wisdom, enjoying salvation …

Ezekiel 45:1-46:24; 1 Peter 3:1-22; Proverbs 28:18-28 In Ezekiel, we read of many sacrifices being offered to God. In the New Testament, it is emphasized that one Sacrifice is sufficient - “For Christ died for sins once for all, the Righteous for the unrighteous to bring you to God” (1 Peter 3:18). We are called …

Continue reading Walking in wisdom, enjoying salvation …

Declare the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvellous light.

Ezekiel 43:1-44:31; 1 Peter 2:4-24; Psalm 132:1-18 In Ezekiel, the priests are described in great detail. In 1 Peter 2:5, the Lord’s people are described as “a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.” This description continues in 1 Peter 2:9 - “a royal priesthood ... a people belonging to God. …

Continue reading Declare the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvellous light.

Holiness and love – we need more of both …

Ezekiel 41:1-42:20; 1 Peter 1:1-2:3; Psalm 131:1-3 Ezekiel emphasizes that the Temple was to be built according to God’s pattern. Our lives are to be lived according to God’s pattern - “Be holy in all you do”, “Love one another deeply, from the heart” (1 Peter 1:15,22). The instructions for the building the Temple were …

Continue reading Holiness and love – we need more of both …

Preach God’s Word – and pray that men and women will be brought back to the Lord.

Ezekiel 40:1-49; James 5:1-20; Psalm 130:1-8 The prophecy spoken by Ezekiel has its ultimate Source in God Himself - “the hand of the Lord was upon me” (Ezekiel 40:1). He goes on to describe “visions of God” (Ezekiel 40:2). To speak the Word of God faithfully requires patience. There is not always evidence of great …

Continue reading Preach God’s Word – and pray that men and women will be brought back to the Lord.

They will know that I am the Lord …

Ezekiel 28:1-29:21; Hebrews 12:14-29; Psalm 126:1-6 Many times over, in these chapters of Ezekiel, the words are repeated, “They will know that I am the Lord.” We must view the events of history in relation to God. He is fulfilling His purpose. He is demonstrating that He is the Lord. The demonstration of His Lordship …

Continue reading They will know that I am the Lord …

Less pride, more humility – and more of the grace of God

Ezekiel 38:1-39:29; James 4:1-17; Proverbs 28:7-17 God’s Word speaks of His judgment upon sin (Ezekiel 39:23-24). It also speaks of His great salvation from sin (Ezekiel 39:25-29). “Scripture says, ‘God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble’” (James 4:6). God’s Word speaks of the choice placed before man - obedience or disobedience, blessing or …

Continue reading Less pride, more humility – and more of the grace of God

Breathe on me, Breath of God …

Ezekiel 36:1-37:28; James 3:1-18; Psalm 129:1-8 The Breath of God (the Spirit of God) brings life (Ezekiel 37:9). When “the tongue ... is ... set on fire by hell” (James 3:6), the words which it breathes out will be “full of deadly poison” (James 3:8). How important it is that we keep on praying, “Breathe on …

Continue reading Breathe on me, Breath of God …

God wants to bless us. How much do we want to be blessed by Him?

Ezekiel 33:21-35:15; James 2:1-26; Psalm 128:1-6 The Word of God speaks clearly about sin and judgment - “See, I Myself will judge between the fat sheep and the lean sheep” (Ezekiel 34:20), “judgment without mercy will be shown to anyone who has not been merciful” (James 2:13). God’s Word also gives to us great promises. …

Continue reading God wants to bless us. How much do we want to be blessed by Him?

God speaks to us – and he’s waiting for our reply.

Ezekiel 32:1-33:20; James 1:1-27; Psalm 127:1-5 God’s Word must be spoken as a Word which calls for response. The prophet is to “warn the wicked man to turn from his ways” (Ezekiel 33:9). He is to declare that “the Sovereign Lord ... takes no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that they …

Continue reading God speaks to us – and he’s waiting for our reply.

Don’t you want to get on in the world? – Which world are you living for?

Ezekiel 30:1-31:18; Hebrews 13:1-25; Proverbs 27:23-28:6 What a contrast there is between “Pharaoh king of Egypt” (Ezekiel 31:2) and “Jesus Christ” who is “the same yesterday and today and forever” (Hebrews 13:8). Pharaoh had the appearance of “majesty”, yet he was “brought down” (Ezekiel 31:2,18). Jesus has a glory which will never be diminished. It …

Continue reading Don’t you want to get on in the world? – Which world are you living for?

When the storms of life come your way … …

Ezekiel 26:1-27:36; Hebrews 12:1-13; Psalm 125:1-5 To Tyre, God says, “Your wealth, merchandise and wares, your mariners, seamen and shipwrights, your merchants and all your soldiers, and everyone else on board will sink into the heart of the sea on the day of your shipwreck” (Ezekiel 27:27). Those who are overladen by their attachment to …

Continue reading When the storms of life come your way … …