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 …

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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 …

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The Lord is reaching out to us. He’s calling us to respond to Him.

Genesis 14:1-16:16; Matthew 5:43-6:24; Psalm 6:1-10 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 …

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Looking beyond physical love to spiritual truth

Song of Solomon 1:1-4:16; 1 Corinthians 12:1-26; Psalm 99:1-9 God uses the physical as an analogy of the spiritual. In 1 Corinthians 12, “the body” symbolizes the Church. In Song of Songs, the theme is physical love. By the Spirit of God, the physical language points beyond itself by using imagery which is suggestive of …

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Touched by love, we learn to love.

Song of Solomon 5:1-8:14; 1 Corinthians 12:27-13:13; Psalm 100:1-5 There is physical love (Song of Songs). There is the love spoken of in 1 Corinthians 13. There is the love of God – “For the Lord is good and His love endures for ever” (Psalm 100:5). The more we consider what the Scriptures say about …

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Salvation And Judgment

Deuteronomy 23:1-25:19; Luke 16:19-17:10; Psalm 45:10-17 Scripture speaks of both salvation and judgment. The Israelites were given "the land ... as an inheritance." The Amalekites were to be "blotted out" (Deuteronomy 25:19). Lazarus received salvation - "carried ... to Abraham's side." The rich man received judgment "in hell" (Luke 16:22-23). We must seek to honour …

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Where does our true strength come from?

Habakkuk 1:1-3:19; Titus 2:1-15; Proverbs 26:3-12 “The Sovereign Lord is my strength; He makes my feet like the feet of a deer, He enables me to go on the heights” – These are the last words of Habakkuk (Habakkuk 3:19). “For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men. It teaches …

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Our real strength comes from the Lord.

Habakkuk 1:1-3:19; Titus 2:1-15; Proverbs 26:3-12 “The Sovereign Lord is my strength; He makes my feet like the feet of a deer, He enables me to go on the heights” - These are the last words of Habakkuk (Habakkuk 3:19). “For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men. It teaches …

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Whenever things are going badly… In the Lord, I take refuge.

Genesis 38:1-39:23; Matthew 13:36-58; Psalm 11:1-7 What a contrast there is between the unrestrained lust of Judah (Genesis 38) and the sexual restraint of Joseph  – “How then can I do such a wicked thing and sin against God?” (Genesis 39:9). Joseph was unjustly treated, and put in prison. Nevertheless, God’s purpose was not hindered …

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My One Year Bible – Days 91-120

Numbers 31:25-32:42; Luke 8:40-9:9; Psalm 40:1 In Moses’ time, the people of God were to “arm themselves before the Lord for battle” (Numbers 32:20). In Jesus’ time, His disciples were given “power and authority to drive out all demons …” (Luke 9:1). In every generation, the Lord’s people are to sing “a new song … …

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Give Thanks To God – And Live In Obedience To Him.

Deuteronomy 26:1-28:14; Luke 17:11-37; Psalm 46:1-11 The Lord blesses an obedient people (Deuteronomy 28:2). Our obedience to God arises from our thankfulness to Him (Luke 17:16). With grateful hearts, we make confession of our faith: "God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble" (Psalm 46:1). To His people, God says, "Be still, …

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With God, we shall gain the victory.

Isaiah 44:24-46:13; Galatians 4:21-5:6; Psalm 108:6-13 “I am the Lord, and there is no other” – This truth is repeated several times over in this part of Isaiah (Isaiah 48:5-6,14,18,21-22; Isaiah 46:9). The contrast, in Isaiah, is between God and the gods. The contrast, in Galatians, is between Christ’s salvation and other ways of salvation (Galatians …

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When we face difficult circumstances…

Job 8;1-10:22; Matthew 19:16-30; Proverbs 3:11-20 When we face difficult circumstances, as Job did and as the Lord’s disciples did (Matthew 19:29), we must never forget that the Lord’s purpose is good and His long-term goal is our good –  “eternal life” (Matthew 19:29). What is to be our attitude to suffering? – “My son, …

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We don’t have the right to expect everything to be going great all the time.

Job 11:1-14:22; Matthew 2):1-9; Psalm 17:6-12 Jesus’ parable of the workers in the vineyard (Matthew 20:1-16) teaches us that all that we have, apart from our sin, is received from God as a gift of His grace. We must remember this when, like Job, we are going through hard times. We don’t have the right to …

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When our hearts are breaking…

Job 4:1-7:21; Matthew 19:1-15; Psalm 17:1-5 Bereavement, hardship, divorce – the Word of God speaks of these difficulties in Job and in the words of Jesus. These things can bring on deep depression. We see this in Job’s reaction to his bereavement and hardship. In such circumstances, we must take our thoughts to the Lord, …

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When things are going badly…

Genesis 38:1-39:23; Matthew 13:36-58; Psalm 11:1-7 What a contrast there is between the unrestrained lust of Judah (Genesis 38) and the sexual restraint of Joseph  – “How then can I do such a wicked thing and sin against God?” (Genesis 39:9). Joseph was unjustly treated, and put in prison. Nevertheless, God’s purpose was not hindered …

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Jesus is showing us that He loves us.

Genesis 41:42-42:38; Matthew 14:22-15:9; Psalm 12:1-8 We may see a parallel between Joseph and “the twelve” (his eleven brothers and his father, Jacob) and Jesus and “the twelve” (His disciples). Joseph is leading them into a situation of testing. His long-term intention is to show them that He loves them. Jesus comes to “the twelve” …

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Looking beyond the things that are happening to us now – to the glory which is yet to come

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 …

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Eternal life – through Jesus Christ our Lord

Genesis 47:13-48:22; Matthew 16:21-17:13; Proverbs 3:1-10 In Genesis and Matthew, we see Jacob and Joseph looking to the future. It is to be a future of blessing. For both, death was near. the future, however, was life. In Jacob’s time, the expectation concerned an earthly land – “God will be with you and take you …

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Let us worship God with our lives as well as our words.

Genesis 49:1-50:26; Matthew 17:14-18:9; Psalm 15:1-5 In Genesis 49, we read of Jacob’s blessings on his sons. In Matthew 18:1-4, we read of the disciples asking Jesus, “Who is the greatest in the Kingdom of heaven?” Jesus replied to them, “whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the Kingdom of heaven.” In the …

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Jesus is Lord of all…

Genesis 45:1-47:12; Matthew 16:1-12; Psalm 14:1-7 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 …

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Let’s set our feet firmly on the Rock of ages – our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.

Isaiah 41:1-42:25; Galatians 3:10-25; Proverbs 22:28-23:9 The Old Testament looks forward to the coming of Christ – “Here is My Servant, whom I uphold, My Chosen One in whom I delight; I will put My Spirit on Him and He will bring justice to the nations” (Isaiah 42:1). He is the fulfilment of the Old …

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Dreams and parables

Genesis 36:1-37:36; Matthew 13:18-35; Psalm 10:12-18 When Joseph spoke of his dream, “his brothers were jealous of him, but his father kept the matter in mind” (Genesis 37:11). Jacob was becoming aware that Joseph was the man whom God had chosen to carry the purpose of God forward into the next generation. Joseph’s dreams had been …

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Turning-points

Genesis 32:1-33:20; Matthew 12:22-45; Proverbs 2:1-11 In Genesis 28:10-22, we read about a turning-point in Jacob’s life. Here, in Genesis 32:22-32, we have another turning-point. It’s summed up in Genesis 32:28 – “Your name will no longer be Jacob, but Israel, because you have struggled with God and with humans and have overcome.” Jacob may “have overcome”, but there …

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Times of blessing…

Genesis 34:1-35:29; Matthew 12:46-13:17; Psalm 10:1-11 We have read about two times of blessing in Jacob’s life (Genesis 28:10-22; Genesis 32:22-32). Here’s a third time when the Lord blessed him (Genesis 35:9-12). The Lord’s blessing doesn’t come only once. He blesses His people again and again. He leads us on to a closer walk with Himself. …

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Saved by the Lord, we are to give ourselves to Him in worship.

Isaiah 38:1-40:31; Galatians 2:11-3:9; Psalm 107:33-43 “The Lord will save me, and we will sing with stringed instruments all the days of our lives in the Temple of the Lord” (Isaiah 38:20). Saved by the Lord, we are to give ourselves to Him in worship. This worship is to be in the Spirit (Galatians 3:3). …

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