Friday, March 10, 2017

The Daily Readings for FRIDAY, March 10, 2017

The Old Testament Lesson

The Old Testament Lesson for today is taken from Deuteronomy 10:12-22

So now, O Israel, what does the LORD your God require of you? Only to fear the LORD your God, to walk in all his ways, to love him, to serve the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul, and to keep the commandments of the LORD your God and his decrees that I am commanding you today, for your own well-being. Although heaven and the heaven of heavens belong to the LORD your God, the earth with all that is in it, yet the LORD set his heart in love on your ancestors alone and chose you, their descendants after them, out of all the peoples, as it is today. Circumcise, then, the foreskin of your heart, and do not be stubborn any longer. For the LORD your God is God of gods and Lord of lords, the great God, mighty and awesome, who is not partial and takes no bribe, who executes justice for the orphan and the widow, and who loves the strangers, providing them food and clothing. You shall also love the stranger, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt. You shall fear the LORD your God; him alone you shall worship; to him you shall hold fast, and by his name you shall swear. He is your praise; he is your God, who has done for you these great and awesome things that your own eyes have seen. Your ancestors went down to Egypt seventy persons; and now the LORD your God has made you as numerous as the stars in heaven.

This is the Word of the Lord
Thanks be to God!

The Epistle Lesson

The Epistle Lesson for today is taken from Hebrews 4:11-16

Let us therefore make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one may fall through such disobedience as theirs. Indeed, the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing until it divides soul from spirit, joints from marrow; it is able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart. And before him no creature is hidden, but all are naked and laid bare to the eyes of the one to whom we must render an account. Since, then, we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, let us hold fast to our confession. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who in every respect has been tested as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore approach the throne of grace with boldness, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

This is the Word of the Lord
Thanks be to God!

The Holy Gospel Lesson

The Holy Gospel is written in John 3:22-36
Glory be to Thee, O Lord!

After this Jesus and his disciples went into the Judean countryside, and he spent some time there with them and baptized. John also was baptizing at Aenon near Salim because water was abundant there; and people kept coming and were being baptized -- John, of course, had not yet been thrown into prison. Now a discussion about purification arose between John's disciples and a Jew. They came to John and said to him, "Rabbi, the one who was with you across the Jordan, to whom you testified, here he is baptizing, and all are going to him." John answered, "No one can receive anything except what has been given from heaven. You yourselves are my witnesses that I said, 'I am not the Messiah, but I have been sent ahead of him.' He who has the bride is the bridegroom. The friend of the bridegroom, who stands and hears him, rejoices greatly at the bridegroom's voice. For this reason my joy has been fulfilled. He must increase, but I must decrease." The one who comes from above is above all; the one who is of the earth belongs to the earth and speaks about earthly things. The one who comes from heaven is above all. He testifies to what he has seen and heard, yet no one accepts his testimony. Whoever has accepted his testimony has certified this, that God is true. He whom God has sent speaks the words of God, for he gives the Spirit without measure. The Father loves the Son and has placed all things in his hands. Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever disobeys the Son will not see life, but must endure God's wrath.

Here ends the Gospel lesson for today
Glory be to Thee ,O Christ!

Morning Psalms

Psalm 40 Expectans, expectavi
1   I waited patiently upon the LORD; he stooped to me and heard my cry.
2   He lifted me out of the desolate pit, out of the mire and clay; he set my feet upon a high cliff and made my footing sure.
3   He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God; many shall see, and stand in awe, and put their trust in the LORD.
4   Happy are they who trust in the LORD! they do not resort to evil spirits or turn to false gods.
5   Great things are they that you have done, O LORD my God! how great your wonders and your plans for us! there is none who can be compared with you.
6   Oh, that I could make them known and tell them! but they are more than I can count.
7   In sacrifice and offering you take no pleasure (you have given me ears to hear you);
8   Burnt-offering and sin-offering you have not required, and so I said, "Behold, I come.
9   In the roll of the book it is written concerning me: 'I love to do your will, O my God; your law is deep in my heart.'"
10   I proclaimed righteousness in the great congregation; behold, I did not restrain my lips; and that, O LORD, you know.
11   Your righteousness have I not hidden in my heart; I have spoken of your faithfulness and your deliverance; I have not concealed your love and faithfulness from the great congregation.
12   You are the LORD; do not withhold your compassion from me; let your love and your faithfulness keep me safe for ever,
13   For innumerable troubles have crowded upon me; my sins have overtaken me, and I cannot see; they are more in number than the hairs of my head, and my heart fails me.
14   Be pleased, O LORD, to deliver me; O LORD, make haste to help me.
15   Let them be ashamed and altogether dismayed who seek after my life to destroy it; let them draw back and be disgraced who take pleasure in my misfortune.
16   Let those who say "Aha!" and gloat over me be confounded, because they are ashamed.
17   Let all who seek you rejoice in you and be glad; let those who love your salvation continually say, "Great is the LORD!"
18   Though I am poor and afflicted, the Lord will have regard for me.
19   You are my helper and my deliverer; do not tarry, O my God.

Psalm 54 Deus, in nomine
1   Save me, O God, by your Name; in your might, defend my cause.
2   Hear my prayer, O God; give ear to the words of my mouth.
3   For the arrogant have risen up against me, and the ruthless have sought my life, those who have no regard for God.
4   Behold, God is my helper; it is the Lord who sustains my life.
5   Render evil to those who spy on me; in your faithfulness, destroy them.
6   I will offer you a freewill sacrifice and praise your Name, O LORD, for it is good.
7   For you have rescued me from every trouble, and my eye has seen the ruin of my foes.

Evening Psalms

Psalm 51 Miserere mei, Deus
1   Have mercy on me, O God, according to your loving-kindness; in your great compassion blot out my offenses.
2   Wash me through and through from my wickedness and cleanse me from my sin.
3   For I know my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me.
4   Against you only have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight.
5   And so you are justified when you speak and upright in your judgment.
6   Indeed, I have been wicked from my birth, a sinner from my mother's womb.
7   For behold, you look for truth deep within me, and will make me understand wisdom secretly.
8   Purge me from my sin, and I shall be pure; wash me, and I shall be clean indeed.
9   Make me hear of joy and gladness, that the body you have broken may rejoice.
10   Hide your face from my sins and blot out all my iniquities.
11   Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.
12   Cast me not away from your presence and take not your holy Spirit from me.
13   Give me the joy of your saving help again and sustain me with your bountiful Spirit.
14   I shall teach your ways to the wicked, and sinners shall return to you.
15   Deliver me from death, O God, and my tongue shall sing of your righteousness, O God of my salvation.
16   Open my lips, O Lord, and my mouth shall proclaim your praise.
17   Had you desired it, I would have offered sacrifice, but you take no delight in burnt-offerings.
18   The sacrifice of God is a troubled spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.
19   Be favorable and gracious to Zion, and rebuild the walls of Jerusalem.
20   Then you will be pleased with the appointed sacrifices, with burnt-offerings and oblations; then shall they offer young bullocks upon your altar.

New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. The New Revised Standard Version Bible may be quoted and/or reprinted up to and inclusive of five hundred (500) verses without express written permission of the publisher, provided the verses quoted do not amount to a complete book of the Bible or account for fifty percent (50%) of the total work in which they are quoted.

Verse of the Day - March 10, 2017

1 Peter 3:15 (NIV) But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect,

Read all of 1 Peter 3

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Morning Devotions with Cap'n Kenny - "Willing to Stand in the Gap"

"So I sought for a man among them who would make a wall, and stand in the gap before Me on behalf of the land, that I should not destroy it; but I found no one."
Ezekiel 22:30 (NKJV)

How many of us would wish ourselves a place in Hell so that someone else might have a place in Heaven?

That is what Paul was saying when he spoke of his love and passion for those who didn’t know the Lord, writing, “I have great sorrow and continual grief in my heart. For I could wish that I myself were accursed from Christ for my brethren, my countrymen according to the flesh” (Romans 9:2–3). Paul was saying, in essence, “If it were possible, I would give up my hope of eternal life so that others who do not know could come to faith.” It’s an amazing statement.

Paul, by the way, isn’t the only one we read of in the Scriptures who had this kind of burden. Moses had the same kind of heart, the heart of an intercessor. When he came down from Mount Sinai after receiving God’s commandments, he found the people dancing and worshiping before the image of a golden calf.

When he realized God was ready to judge them, he made a statement that was unparalleled in the Bible except, perhaps, for Paul’s statement. He said, “Oh, these people have committed a great sin, and have made for themselves a god of gold! Yet now, if You will forgive their sin . . .” At that point in the original language, there is a long pause, as though he were thinking about the full implications of what was about to follow: “but if not, I pray, blot me out of Your book which You have written” (Exodus 32:31–32).

Here was a man who stood in the gap. Today God is still looking for people to stand in the gap like Moses, like Paul, with a God-given burden for those who don’t know Him.

In Jesus,
Cap'n Kenny

Scripture taken from the New King James Version®, NKJV® Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Devotion by Greg Laurie © 2017 Harvest Christian Fellowship; all rights reserved.

Un Dia a la Vez - El Manual de Instrucciones

La exposición de tus palabras nos da luz, y da entendimiento al sencillo.
Salmo 119:130 (NVI)

Este es el libro inspirado por Dios que nos ayuda a conocer cómo nuestro Dios creó este mundo. Además, nos muestra todo lo que Él hizo por nosotros al enviar a su único Hijo Jesucristo para que muriera por ti y por mí a fin de perdonar nuestros pecados.

A través de este maravilloso libro, Dios nos instruye para ser sabios, vivir una vida que le agrade y, de ese modo, hacer su voluntad. Cuando leemos este Manual, podemos conocer que Él es el mismo ayer, hoy y siempre.

Este es el libro más editado y más perseguido. Han tratado de acabarlo, lo han vituperado, y aun así, se mantiene vigente e incólume. A pesar de su antigüedad, sus enseñanzas no pierden vigencia. Siempre aconseja el bien y no el mal. En la literatura no hay otro libro más excelente que este. En todas las casas, escuelas, hospitales, hoteles y cárceles se encuentra siempre… «La Biblia».

No tienes que ser un erudito para entenderla, porque es el mismo Dios el que te la revela y te guía.

Mi motivación para ti hoy es que también la tengas como parte de la formación de tus hijos.

Enséñales a leerla, y si son niños pequeños, acostúmbralos a leérsela antes de ir a dormir.

Con el tiempo entenderás el tesoro que estás sembrando en sus corazones y en sus vidas.

La Biblia está al alcance de todos, desde Génesis hasta el Apocalipsis.

Un Día a la Vez Copyright © by Claudia Pinzón. La Santa Biblia, Nueva Versión Internacional® NVI® Copyright © 1986, 1999, 2015 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Standing Strong Through the Storm - JESUS THE OVERCOMER

But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed.

Dr. Felix Ruh, a Jewish doctor in Paris, had a granddaughter who died of black diphtheria. Vowing to find out what had killed her, he locked himself in his laboratory for days and emerged with a fierce determination to prove, with his colleague, Louis Pasteur, the germ theory. The medical association had disapproved of Pasteur and had succeeded in getting him exiled, but he hid in the forest near Paris and erected a laboratory for his forbidden research.

Twenty beautiful horses were led out into the forest to the improvised laboratory. Scientists, doctors, and nurses came to watch the experiment. Ruh opened a steel vault and took out a large pail filled with black diphtheria germs, which he had cultured carefully for months. There were enough germs in that pail to kill everyone in France.

The scientist went to each horse and swabbed its nostrils, tongue, throat, and eyes with the deadly germs. Every horse except one developed a terrific fever and died. Most of the doctors and scientists wearied of the experiment and did not remain for what they thought would be the death of the remaining horse.

For several more days this final horse lingered, lying pathetically on the ground. While Ruh, Pasteur, and several others were sleeping on cots in the stables, the orderly on duty had been instructed to awaken the scientists should there be any change in the animal’s temperature during the night. About two a.m., the temperature showed a half degree decrease, and the orderly wakened Dr. Ruh. By morning the thermometer had dropped two more degrees. By night the fever was entirely gone, and the horse was able to stand, eat, and drink.

Then Dr. Ruh took a sledgehammer and struck that beautiful horse a deathblow between the eyes. The scientists drew blood from the veins of this animal that had developed the black diphtheria but had overcome it. They drove as fast as they could to the Paris municipal hospital and forced their way past the superintendent and the guards. They went into the ward where three hundred babies lay, segregated to die from black diphtheria. With the blood of the horse, they inoculated every one of the babies. All but three lived and recovered completely.

The blood of an overcomer saved them. The blood of an Overcomer has also spiritually saved many people. He too had to die to bring life to others.

RESPONSE: Today I will repeatedly praise Jesus for the blood He shed as an Overcomer for my sin.

PRAYER: Thank you, Lord, for sacrificing Yourself, an Overcomer, so that I might have abundant and eternal life.

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Men of the Bible - Aaron

His work: Aaron was the first in the line of Israel's hereditary priesthood.
His character: Aaron's role was primarily a passive one: to do and say whatever Moses told him to. Though he stood by Moses throughout his struggle with Pharaoh, he seemed unable to stand on his own as a leader. When Moses was absent for forty days, Aaron gave in to the people's insistent demands for a god to worship. On another occasion, however, he joined Moses in stopping a plague that threatened to destroy the Israelites because of their rebellion.
His sorrow: Aaron disobeyed the Lord by presiding over an incident of false worship. At another point he angered God by joining his sister Miriam in complaining against their brother's leadership.
His triumph: To have spoken God's word, entrusted to him through Moses, and eventually to have acted as a mediator between God and man, providing for the atonement of sin and the people's reconciliation with God.
Key Scriptures: Exodus 20:1-6; 28; 32; Numbers 12:1-15

A Look at the Man

After the incident with the calf, Aaron must have been aware of the seriousness of his failure to lead the people and of his own need for forgiveness. He would have realized that his life had been in jeopardy because of God's anger. But Aaron was spared because of God's merciful response to his brother's prayers. In the book of Deuteronomy, which depicts Moses addressing the Israelites prior to their entrance into the Promised Land, Moses says that "the LORD was angry enough with Aaron to destroy him, but at that time I prayed for Aaron too" (Deuteronomy 9:20).

Aaron was a man who had witnessed God's power over Pharaoh and who had for a time stood on the mountain with Moses and seen the glory of God. As one who was set apart by God to play an important role among his people, he had a unique part to play in the story of salvation. And yet even his kinship with Moses, even God's call to be a priest, did not spare him from the power of sin's temptation.

Thereafter, whenever Aaron performed his priestly duties as a mediator between a holy God and a sinful people, he would not be able to come before the Lord with any air of self-righteousness, as though only the people, and not he, were guilty of sin. Because of his own weakness, he would be capable of sympathizing with the weakness of God's people.

A priest who could sympathize with the people, as it turns out, was only half of what God had planned for his people. Centuries later there would be a man who would perfectly embody the role of the high priest, not only sympathizing with the weakness of his people, but also resisting the power of temptation. Because of him, we are now able to approach God, confident that his attitude toward each of us is marked by grace and mercy.

Reflect On: Hebrews 4:14–16
Praise God: For providing us with a great high priest.
Offer Thanks: That God has made a way for us to return to him.
Confess: Any pride that makes you want to live life strictly on your own terms.
Ask God: To increase your confidence in his forgiveness.

Today's reading is a brief excerpt from Men of the Bible: A One-Year Devotional Study of Men in Scripture by Ann Spangler and Robert Wolgemuth (Zondervan). © 2010 by Ann Spangler. Used with permission. All rights reserved. Enjoy the complete book by purchasing your own copy at the Bible Gateway Store. The book's title must be included when sharing the above content on social media. Coming this fall: watch for Wicked Women of the Bible by Ann Spangler.

Girlfriends in God - Overthinking Ministry

Today’s Truth

So let’s do it—full of belief, confident that we’re presentable inside and out. Let’s keep a firm grip on the promises that keep us going. He always keeps his word. Let’s see how inventive we can be in encouraging love and helping out, not avoiding worshiping together as some do but spurring each other on, especially as we see the big Day approaching. Hebrews 10:22-25 (The Message)

Friend to Friend

I joined a gym this Fall.

In all fairness perhaps I should back up and disclose that I actually joined the Y several months before. I walked through those doors armed with so many good intention that if intent was all it took to be fit, I’d have been on the cover of Shape Magazine by now.

I went twice.

It felt lonely and I had to park far away (you know, to walk into the GYM) and it wasn’t like Cheers where everybody knows you name. Apparently it was just all too much and my ENFP personality just couldn’t handle it.

Maybe if I’d done a class I’d have made a friend and gone more than twice. But I never can get the choreography right with a step class, Zumba makes me look like I’m convulsing, and the class called “Beast Mode” wasn’t exactly feeling invitational. Why are there walls full of windows for these classes anyhow? Is no one at the gym self conscious?! My spandex really served to hold the muffin top in, where as MANY of the others seemed to beautifully accentuate whatever cookies they’d been living without!

I even tried taking my kids, who were too young to work out on the equipment but too old for the kid zone, and so really, all the excuses were roadblocks and I quickly decided they stood completely in the way. I somehow convinced myself that I’d eventually go, so I foolishly paid for 6 months and only stepped foot in the building three times (if you include the day I went just to sign up and join.)

Finally, I cancelled the membership and resolved to walk in the neighborhood on the days it wasn’t too hot or too rainy or too cold or too inconvenient. As I’m sure you can guess, that was wildly successful as well, especially with all of my parameters of convenience around the plan.

Then one day when I was at a Moms in Prayer meeting for my kids’ school, my friend Kat told me about a gym she had joined and that for the first time in her life she actually looked forward to going. “It’s different…it’s like there is real community there,” she told me.

To make a long story short, I decided to give it a shot. And also because they ran a special through some direct mailing where you could somehow get the first month free. I figured it was worth a shot.

I actually had to wait three weeks to start because they put all the new people in a beginners class together so we could all learn the moves. I also quickly learned they did it this way because it was so exhausting and we might have all died had we shown up immediately to a regular length class.

The first day we did a high intensity workout that lasted approximately seven minutes and it took me SEVENTY minutes afterwards to catch my breath. I like to tell myself this was because we had to run in the cold and it was hard on our lungs, but also let’s be honest…it was because I’d had a gym membership for 8 months and never used it before. But I hung in there because at the next class when I admitted that I barely survived the rest of the day after the class, four other women admitted they took ages to recover as well. And suddenly, friendships were formed in those moments where we bonded over the struggle and admitted we didn’t have it all together.

Recently one of the trainers asked me to coffee just to check in and see how I was feeling about the program. (For the record, I’m still feeling really great about it since my smaller jeans are starting to nearly fit again.) As we were talking, I discovered that one of the company’s core values is truly about building community. Her asking me to coffee was actually part of her job to make sure people truly connect at the gym. Kinda genius right?!

While we were talking though, I learned that she loves the Lord and had been looking for a Bible study but time of day can be tricky and it’s hard to find community sometimes.

“What if you had a study at the gym?” I asked her.

“That’d be amazing…but we would have to find someone to facilitate it.” She shrugged.

“I could do it.” I said. And something in that moment felt more right than any of the last three studies I’ve done through the more traditional routes. “I mean, the community is already here…it’s just originally built around something else. Why not spur one another on in this way too?”

She and I are meeting in a couple of days to pick out a study and they’re going to send out an invite to all of the women who come to the gym. Listen, I’m not sure how it will go, but I can’t imagine a more perfect place to be doing ministry than where we already do life.

And I’ve been thinking how often we overlook the obvious places to be the hands and feet and mouthpieces of Jesus because we’re so focused on the more traditional spots. Wednesday nights can be amazing to gather with church friends, but when was the last time we gathered around the word with people who are in our world but maybe not even our denomination? Are we willing and open to building community around the Word from places where community is already growing? What if instead of trying to always create community around a study, we began to ask the Lord what spaces of connection in our lives already exist and could become even more powerful catalysts for His movement?

The Scriptures are clear that we have permission and even are encouraged to be INVENTIVE in the ways we spur one another on…in the ways we bring the Word of God to others. Imagine what the Lord can do when we invite him into all the spaces we go and how he can build even deeper community in places where He has already laid the groundwork of relationship.

Let’s Pray

Father God, thank You that You are in all things. Lord we love that You build relationships among people in the workplace, in neighborhoods, in gyms, and schools, and all the random places where we don’t even pay attention to all you could be doing. Lord, You connect us on bleachers and sidelines and in the PTA, and you have plans for ways you want to spread your Word that we have yet to even consider. Lord we ask that you’d open our eyes to see your people around us and the opportunities for deeper relationship with one another and with You. Thank you for inviting us to co-labor with you Father and we ask that you would make us attentive to the small voice in the unexpected places where you call us unto yourself.
In Jesus’ Name,

Now It’s Your Turn

So often we look for specific brands of community in certain circles but maybe even have trouble finding it. What if we really began to see the whole world around us as a possibility to sow into an even deeper faith community outside the walls of our churches as well as within them? When we bring the Lord into places of already established relationships it can often open a door for a greater spread of the Gospel, a broadening of our own appreciation of the body of Christ as a whole, and even open opportunities for us to walk in discipleship along people we might not have rubbed spiritual shoulders with on a Sunday morning otherwise!

More from the Girlfriends

Logan Wolfram would give you full access to her pantry if you lived next door. She is a plate-juggling mom and interior decorator turned writer, speaker, and host of the Allume Conference. She is a passionate leader who desires to see women live fully in Christ. She is a speaker and the author of Curious Faith; Rediscovering Hope in the God of Possibility. Logan and her husband, Jeremy, divide their time between wrangling two inquisitive boys, a 175-pound mastiff named Titan, and a 17 pound mutt named Sugar. They reside in Greenville, South Carolina. Connect more with Logan on her website

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LHM Daily Devotion - "Shattering Illusions"

Lenten Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries

"Shattering Illusions"

March 10, 2017

(Jesus said) "The Son of Man must suffer many things ..." (Luke 9:22a, ESV).

Read Luke 9:18-22

Jesus' disciples have heard His powerful words and seen many mighty miracles. They believe He is the promised Messiah. But as soon as Peter makes his great confession, Jesus sternly commands the 12 disciples to keep the news to themselves. The Jewish crowds have the wrong idea about the Messiah; they think He will be a great king, driving out the Romans and establishing an earthly kingdom. Even the disciples are swept up in this dream. Now Jesus begins shattering that illusion and teaching them that He came to save the world through His death and resurrection.

Jesus is fully aware of all the horrendous things He will suffer in Jerusalem, but He also knows the disciples are not ready for all the gory facts. So He draws a veil over the details and simply says, "The Son of Man must suffer many things."

But the disciples need to know who will cause His great suffering. So Jesus teaches them that the leaders of His own people-the Jewish high court-will carefully examine Him and reject Him as their Messiah. They will kill Him through an act of judicial murder. But Jesus' revelation to the disciples doesn't end with His death. He clearly states that on the third day after His death He will be raised.

At Christmas when you look at the Baby dozing in Bethlehem's manger, this may not be the life you would picture for Him, but it is exactly what God had planned for Him since the very beginning.

THE PRAYER:  Almighty God, Jesus was careful to shield His disciples from all the horrors He knew He would suffer to save us from our sins. Remind me that You know every detail of my future and give me confidence You will make all thing work together for my good. For Jesus' sake I pray. Amen

Use these devotions in your newsletter and bulletin! Used by permission; all rights reserved by the Int'l LLL (LHM). The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Permanent Text Edition® (2016). Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.

Devociones de Cuaresma - ¿De quién eres hijo?

Devociones de Cuaresma  2017

¿De quién eres hijo?

10 de Marzo de 2017

Si eres Hijo de Dios... Mateo 4:3, RVC (4:1-4)

Muchos apellidos tienen un sufijo que indica el origen de la familia. En español, por ejemplo, los González son hijos de Gonzalo, y los Rodríguez son hijos de Rodrigo. En inglés, los Williamson son hijos de William, y los Johnson hijos de John. Ser hijos de alguien nos identifica.

Cuando Jesús fue bautizado por Juan en el río Jordán, los cielos se abrieron y con voz fuerte el Padre celestial declaró: "Éste es mi Hijo amado, en quien me complazco" (Mateo 3:17). ¡Qué hermosa afirmación! Con cuánto orgullo el Padre nos presenta a su Hijo. Pero alguien más estaba escuchando: el maligno, el que confronta a Jesús en el desierto para cuestionar su identidad. "Si eres Hijo de Dios..." haz el disparate que te pido. Qué insolente que es el diablo, tentar al mismo Dios, poner en duda la afirmación tan clara del Padre. Jesús no se dejó engañar, y le contestó con la Palabra de Dios.

Tú y yo también somos hijos del Padre en los cielos. Tenemos una identidad que nos fue dada en el Bautismo, cuando Dios declaró: "Te perdono todos tus pecados. Eres mi hijo amado en quien tengo alegría." Sin duda, el diablo también escuchó esta declaración y, muy temprano en nuestra vida, nos presentó sus tentaciones para que dudemos de nuestra identidad como hijos de Dios.

Cuando las cosas no nos salen de acuerdo a nuestros planes, nos preguntamos si Dios realmente nos quiere tanto como dice. Puede ser que cuando pecamos abiertamente en contra de la voluntad divina nos surja la duda de que Dios pueda perdonarnos y pueda recibirnos como sus hijos amados. Pero Dios no ha cambiado de parecer. Una vez que tiene hijos, los ama hasta la muerte. La muerte y resurrección de Jesús así lo confirma.

Gracias, Padre, por hacernos tus hijos amados. Fortalécenos en esa relación de familia divina. Amén.

© Copyright 2017 Cristo Para Todas Las Naciones. ¡U tilice estas devociones en sus boletines! Usado con permiso. Todos los derechos reservados por la Int'l LLL. Reina Valera Contemporánea (RVC) Copyright © 2009, 2011 by Sociedades Bíblicas Unidas.

Our Daily Bread - Home

Read: Ephesians 2:11–22 | Bible in a Year: Deuteronomy 11–13; Mark 12:1–27

You are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with God’s people. Ephesians 2:19

A young African refugee who goes by the name of Steven is a man without a country. He thinks he may have been born in Mozambique or Zimbabwe. But he never knew his father and lost his mother. She fled civil war, traveling country to country as a street vendor. Without ID and unable to prove his place of birth, Steven walked into a British police station, asking to be arrested. Jail seemed better to Steven than trying to exist on the streets without the rights and benefits of citizenship.

The plight of living without a country was on Paul’s mind as he wrote his letter to the Ephesians. His non-Jewish readers knew what it was like to live as aliens and outsiders (2:12). Only since finding life and hope in Christ (1:13) had they discovered what it meant to belong to the kingdom of heaven (Matt. 5:3). In Jesus, they learned what it means to be known and cared for by the Father He came to reveal (Matt. 6:31–33).

Paul realized, however, that as the past fades from view, a short memory can cause us to forget that, while hope is the new norm, despair was the old reality.

May our God help us to live in security—to know each day the belonging that we have as members of His family is by faith in Jesus Christ and to understand the rights and benefits of having our home in Him.

Lord, as we remember how hopeless we were before You found us, please help us not to forget those who are still on the street.

Hope means the most to those who have lived without it.

© 2017 Our Daily Bread Ministries

Lời Sống Hằng Ngày - Quê Hương

Đọc: Ê-phê-sô 2:11-22 | Đọc Kinh Thánh suốt năm: Phục truyền 11-13; Mác 12:1-27

Anh em không còn là người xa lạ hoặc là người tạm trú nữa, nhưng là người đồng hương với các thánh đồ. (Ê-phê-sô 2:19)

Một thanh niên tị nạn người châu Phi tên Steven là người không có quê hương. Anh nghĩ có lẽ anh được sinh ra ở Mozambique hoặc Zimbabwe. Nhưng anh chưa bao giờ biết cha của mình và đã lạc mất mẹ. Bà chạy trốn trong cuộc nội chiến, đi từ nước này đến nước khác bán hàng rong trên phố. Không có thẻ căn cước và không thể chứng minh nơi sinh của mình, Steven bước vào đồn cảnh sát của nước Anh, yêu cầu họ bắt giữ mình. Nhà tù dường như tốt cho Steven hơn là cố gắng tồn tại trên đường phố mà không có quyền và lợi ích gì của một công dân.

Hoàn cảnh sống không có quê hương là điều Phao-lô nghĩ đến khi ông viết thư cho người Ê-phê-sô. Những độc giả không phải gốc Do Thái sẽ hiểu thế nào là sống như người xa lạ, ngoại quyền công dân (2:12) Chỉ khi tìm thấy sự sống và hy vọng trong Đấng Christ (1:13), họ mới khám phá ra ý nghĩa của việc thuộc về thiên quốc (Mat. 5:3). Trong Chúa Jêsus, họ biết ý nghĩa của việc được Cha Thiên Thượng biết rõ và chăm sóc như Ngài đã đến để bày tỏ (Mat. 6:31-33).

Tuy nhiên, Phao-lô nhận ra rằng quá khứ dần mờ nhạt, bộ nhớ ngắn hạn có thể khiến chúng ta quên mất rằng, trong lúc hy vọng là tiêu chuẩn mới, thì tuyệt vọng là thực tế xưa cũ.

Nguyện Chúa giúp chúng ta sống trong sự an tâm – để mỗi ngày biết chúng ta được thuộc về gia đình Ngài bởi đức tin nơi Chúa Jêsus Christ và hiểu được quyền và lợi ích khi có quê hương ở trong Ngài.

Lạy Chúa, khi chúng con nhớ mình đã vô vọng thế nào trước khi Ngài tìm thấy chúng con, xin giúp chúng con không quên những người vô gia cư.

Niềm hy vọng có ý nghĩa nhất với những người sống trong vô vọng.

© 2017 Lời Sống Hằng Ngày

Nuestro Pan Diario - Extranjeros

Leer: Efesios 2:11-22 | La Biblia en un año: Marcos 12:1-27

Así que ya no sois extranjeros ni advenedizos, sino conciudadanos de los santos, y miembros de la familia de Dios (Efesios 2:19).

Un joven refugiado africano, llamado Esteban, es un hombre sin nación. Cree que nació en Mozambique o en Zimbabue, pero nunca conoció a su padre, y su madre murió. Sin identificación e incapaz de demostrar dónde había nacido, Esteban entró en una estación de policía británica y pidió que lo arrestaran. La cárcel le parecía mejor que vagar por las calles, sin derechos ni beneficios ciudadanos.

Al escribir su carta a los efesios, Pablo tenía en mente la grave situación de vivir sin una patria. Sus lectores gentiles sabían lo que significaba vivir como extranjeros y alienados (2:12). Solo cuando hallaron vida y esperanza en Cristo (1:13), descubrieron lo que significaba pertenecer a la patria celestial (Hebreos 11:14). Por las enseñanzas de Jesús, supieron que tenían un Padre que los conocía y se interesaba por ellos (Mateo 6:31-33).

No obstante, Pablo comprendía que, cuando se pierde de vista el pasado, podemos olvidarnos de que, aunque la esperanza sea la nueva norma de vida, la antigua realidad era la desesperación.

Que nuestro Dios nos ayude a vivir seguros, sabiendo lo que tenemos al ser miembros de su familia por la fe en Jesucristo y entendiendo los derechos y los beneficios de poseer un hogar en Él.

Señor, que no olvidemos hablarles de ti a los que aún están en la calle.

La esperanza es lo más importante para aquellos que han vivido sin tenerla.

Unser Täglich Brot - Daheim

Lesen: Epheser 2,11-22 | Die Bibel In Einem Jahr: 5.Mose 11–13; Markus 12,1-27

So seid ihr nun nicht mehr Gäste und Fremdlinge, sondern Mitbürger der Heiligen und Gottes Hausgenossen. Epheser 2,19

Ein junger afrikanischer Flüchtling, Steven genannt, ist staatenlos. Er meint, er sei in Mosambik geboren, vielleicht aber auch in Simbabwe. Aber seinen Vater hat er nie gekannt und die Mutter verloren. Sie floh vor dem Bürgerkrieg und zog bettelnd von einem Land ins andere. Ohne Identitätsausweis und ohne Nachweis seines Geburtsorts betrat Steven einen englischen Polizeiposten und bat um seine Festnahme. Das Gefängnis erschien ihm besser als der Versuch, sich rechtlos und ohne Bürgerrechte auf der Straße durchschlagen zu müssen.

Das Schicksal, heimatlos zu sein, beschäftigt Paulus auch in seinem Brief an die Epheser. Seine nicht-jüdischen Leser wussten, was es heißt, als Fremde und Außenseiter zu leben (2,12). Erst seit sie in Christus Leben und Hoffnung gefunden hatten (1,13), hatten sie entdeckt, was es bedeutet, zu Gottes Reich zu gehören (Matth. 5,3). In Jesus hatten sie erfahren, wie es ist, von dem Vater gekannt und geliebt zu werden, den zu zeigen der auf die Welt kam (Matth. 6,31-33).

Paulus wusste aber auch, wie schnell Erinnerungen an die Vergangenheit verblassen und vergessen geht, dass man früher einmal in der Verzweiflung lebte.

Möge Gott uns helfen, in Sicherheit zu leben—jeden Tag zu wissen, dass die Heimat, die wir als Kinder seiner Familie haben, im Glauben an Jesus Christus wurzelt, und zu begreifen, was für ein Vorrecht das ist.

Herr, wie hoffnungslos waren auch wir, bevor du uns gefunden hast. Darum lass uns die nicht vergessen, die noch immer auf der Straße leben.

Hoffnung bedeutet dem am meisten, der ohne Hoffnung leben musste.

© 2017 Unser Täglich Brot

Notre Pain Quotidien - Chez soi

Ainsi donc, vous n’êtes plus des étrangers, ni des gens du dehors ; mais vous êtes concitoyens des saints, gens de la maison de Dieu. (Éphésiens 2.19)

Steven, un jeune réfugié africain apatride, croit être né au Mozambique ou au Zimbabwe, mais n’a jamais connu son père et a perdu sa mère. Celle-ci, fuyant la guerre civile, était allée de pays en pays, gagnant sa vie comme vendeuse de rue. Sans papiers et incapable de prouver son lieu de naissance, Steven est entré un jour dans un commissariat britannique pour demander à se faire arrêter. La prison lui semblait préférable à la survie dans la rue sans les droits et les privilèges afférents à la citoyenneté.

Le sort qui l’attendait en tant qu’apatride occupait la pensée de Paul lorsqu’il a écrit son épître aux Éphésiens. Ses lecteurs non‑juifs savaient ce que c’était que de vivre comme des étrangers (2.12). Ce n’était qu’en découvrant la vie et l’espoir en Christ (1.13) qu’ils avaient appris ce que signifiait l’appartenance au royaume des cieux (MT 5.3). En Jésus, ils ont appris ce qu’est le fait d’être connu et aimé du Père qu’il était venu leur révéler (MT 6.31‑33).

Paul a toutefois compris qu’à mesure que le passé s’efface, une mémoire courte risque de nous faire oublier que l’espoir est devenu la nouvelle norme à suivre et que le désespoir est devenu l’ancienne réalité.

Puisse notre Dieu nous aider à vivre en sécurité, sachant jour après jour que notre appartenance à sa famille tient à notre foi en Jésus‑Christ ainsi qu’aux droits et aux privilèges associés au fait de demeurer en lui.

L’espoir est sans prix pour ceux qui ont vécu sans lui.

Хліб Наш Насущній - Батьківщина

Читати: Ефесян 2:11-22 | Біблія за рік: Повторення Закону 11–13 ; Марка 12:1-27

Отже, ви вже не чужі й не приходьки, а співгорожани святим, і домашні для Бога. — Ефесян 2:19

Молодий африканський біженець, якого всі звуть Стівен, – це людина без батьківщини. Він каже, що народився у Мозамбіку або Зімбабве, але ніколи не знав свого батька і рано залишився без матері. Він уникнув громадянської війни, подорожуючи з країни в країну як вуличний торгівець. Не маючи жодних документів, щоб довести місце свого народження, Стівен пішов до британського поліцейського відділку і попросив, щоб його заарештували. Перебування в тюрмі здавалося Стівену кращим за намагання якось вижити на вулицях міста без будь-яких прав.

Напевно саме про жалюгідне життя людини без батьківщини думав апостол Павло, коли писав листа до ефесян. Читачі знали, як важко жити чужинцям та приходькам (Еф. 2:12). Лише отримавши життя й надію у Христі (Еф. 1:13), ефесяни пізнали, що значить належати до небесного царства (Мт. 5:3). В Ісусі вони відчули, що значить, коли Отець знає тебе особисто і піклується про тебе. Саме для того прийшов Ісус, щоб відкрити нам Отця (Мт. 6:31-33).

Минуле стирається з пам’яті, і ми схильні забувати велику істину: відчай – то колишня реальність, а надія – теперішня. Нехай Бог допоможе нам постійно пам’ятати про свою належність до великої родини Ісуса Христа через віру і розуміти свої права й привілеї як громадян небесної батьківщини.

Господи, допоможи нам, коли згадуємо свою безнадію перед наверненням до Тебе, не забувати тих, хто ще блукають “вулицями цього світу”.

Надія значить надзвичайно багато для тих, хто все життя жили без неї.

© 2017 Хліб Наш Насущній

Хлеб наш насущный - Дом

Читать сейчас: Ефесянам 2:11-22 | Библия за год: Второзаконие 11-13; Марка 12:1-27

Итак, вы уже не чужие и не пришельцы, но сограждане святым и свои Богу. — Ефесянам 2:19

Молодой африканский беженец, называющий себя Стивеном, – человек без родины. Он считает, что родился в Мозамбике или Зимбабве. Но он никогда не знал своего отца и потерял мать. Она переезжала из страны в страну, зарабатывая на жизнь уличной торговлей. Не имея паспорта и гражданства, Стивен обратился в Британскую полицию с просьбой, чтобы его арестовали. Тюрьма представлялась лучшим вариантом в сравнении с жизнью на улице.

ысль о жизни на чужбине была в сердце Павла при написании Послания к ефесянам. Его языческие читатели знали, что значит быть чужаками и пришельцами (Еф. 2:12). Только обретя жизнь и надежду во Христе (Еф. 1:13), они узнали, что значит принадлежать Небесному Царству (Мф. 5:3). Благодаря Иисусу, они обрели любовь и заботу Отца, Которого Он им открыл (Мф. 6:31-33).

Павел, однако, понимал, что со временем они могут забыть, что их новый образ жизни – надежда, а отчаяние ушло в прошлое.

Пусть Бог поможет нам каждый день помнить про свою принадлежность по вере к семье Иисуса Христа и понимать все права и привилегии, которые мы имеем как граждане небесного отечества.

Господи, вспоминая, как безнадежны были мы до того, как Ты нас нашел, просим: помоги нам не забыть тех, кто все еще на улице.

Надежда – самое главное для тех, кто жил без нее.

© 2017 Хлеб Наш Насущный