Monday, November 6, 2017

The Daily Readings for MONDAY, November 6, 2017

Jesus Explains the Parable of the Weeds - Matthew 13:36-43
Daily Readings

Nehemiah 6:1-19
Now when it was reported to Sanballat and Tobiah and to Geshem the Arab and to the rest of our enemies that I had built the wall and that there was no gap left in it (though up to that time I had not set up the doors in the gates), Sanballat and Geshem sent to me, saying, "Come and let us meet together in one of the villages in the plain of Ono." But they intended to do me harm. So I sent messengers to them, saying, "I am doing a great work and I cannot come down. Why should the work stop while I leave it to come down to you?" They sent to me four times in this way, and I answered them in the same manner. In the same way Sanballat for the fifth time sent his servant to me with an open letter in his hand. In it was written, "It is reported among the nations-- and Geshem also says it-- that you and the Jews intend to rebel; that is why you are building the wall; and according to this report you wish to become their king. You have also set up prophets to proclaim in Jerusalem concerning you, 'There is a king in Judah!' And now it will be reported to the king according to these words. So come, therefore, and let us confer together." Then I sent to him, saying, "No such things as you say have been done; you are inventing them out of your own mind" -- for they all wanted to frighten us, thinking, "Their hands will drop from the work, and it will not be done." But now, O God, strengthen my hands. One day when I went into the house of Shemaiah son of Delaiah son of Mehetabel, who was confined to his house, he said, "Let us meet together in the house of God, within the temple, and let us close the doors of the temple, for they are coming to kill you; indeed, tonight they are coming to kill you." But I said, "Should a man like me run away? Would a man like me go into the temple to save his life? I will not go in!" Then I perceived and saw that God had not sent him at all, but he had pronounced the prophecy against me because Tobiah and Sanballat had hired him. He was hired for this purpose, to intimidate me and make me sin by acting in this way, and so they could give me a bad name, in order to taunt me. Remember Tobiah and Sanballat, O my God, according to these things that they did, and also the prophetess Noadiah and the rest of the prophets who wanted to make me afraid. So the wall was finished on the twenty-fifth day of the month Elul, in fifty-two days. And when all our enemies heard of it, all the nations around us were afraid and fell greatly in their own esteem; for they perceived that this work had been accomplished with the help of our God. Moreover in those days the nobles of Judah sent many letters to Tobiah, and Tobiah's letters came to them. For many in Judah were bound by oath to him, because he was the son-in-law of Shecaniah son of Arah: and his son Jehohanan had married the daughter of Meshullam son of Berechiah. Also they spoke of his good deeds in my presence, and reported my words to him. And Tobiah sent letters to intimidate me.

Revelation 10:1-11
And I saw another mighty angel coming down from heaven, wrapped in a cloud, with a rainbow over his head; his face was like the sun, and his legs like pillars of fire. He held a little scroll open in his hand. Setting his right foot on the sea and his left foot on the land, he gave a great shout, like a lion roaring. And when he shouted, the seven thunders sounded. And when the seven thunders had sounded, I was about to write, but I heard a voice from heaven saying, "Seal up what the seven thunders have said, and do not write it down." Then the angel whom I saw standing on the sea and the land raised his right hand to heaven and swore by him who lives forever and ever, who created heaven and what is in it, the earth and what is in it, and the sea and what is in it: "There will be no more delay, but in the days when the seventh angel is to blow his trumpet, the mystery of God will be fulfilled, as he announced to his servants the prophets." Then the voice that I had heard from heaven spoke to me again, saying, "Go, take the scroll that is open in the hand of the angel who is standing on the sea and on the land." So I went to the angel and told him to give me the little scroll; and he said to me, "Take it, and eat; it will be bitter to your stomach, but sweet as honey in your mouth." So I took the little scroll from the hand of the angel and ate it; it was sweet as honey in my mouth, but when I had eaten it, my stomach was made bitter. Then they said to me, "You must prophesy again about many peoples and nations and languages and kings."

Matthew 13:36-43
Then he left the crowds and went into the house. And his disciples approached him, saying, "Explain to us the parable of the weeds of the field." He answered, "The one who sows the good seed is the Son of Man; the field is the world, and the good seed are the children of the kingdom; the weeds are the children of the evil one, and the enemy who sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the age, and the reapers are angels. Just as the weeds are collected and burned up with fire, so will it be at the end of the age. The Son of Man will send his angels, and they will collect out of his kingdom all causes of sin and all evildoers, and they will throw them into the furnace of fire, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Let anyone with ears listen!

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.

Prayer of the Day for MONDAY, November 6, 2017

This morning we remember the 26 souls lost is yesterday church shooting.

Almighty God, you have created us in your own image: Grant us grace fearlessly to contend against evil and to make no peace with oppression; and, that we may reverently use our freedom, help us to employ it in the maintenance of justice in our communities and among the nations, to the glory of your holy Name; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Verse of the Day for MONDAY, November 6, 2017

Ephesians 1:9-10 (NIV) he made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ, to be put into effect when the times reach their fulfillment—to bring unity to all things in heaven and on earth under Christ.

Read all of Ephesians 1

Listen to Ephesians 1

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 - No Exceptions

No Exceptions

"He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent."
~ 2 Peter 3:9b (NLT)

When I first heard the gospel, I thought, “I can’t do that. I’m not the religious type.” I wasn’t raised in church. I didn’t think I would fit in with Christians or in the church. I thought it wasn’t going to work for me. But I was wrong. Christ did everything for me that He promised He would do.

There are people who say, “I’ve tried the whole Christianity thing. I went to church and all that. I tried it, but it didn’t work for me.”

But I would suggest the problem is not with “the whole Christianity thing.” It’s with them. They are talking about God, and God works in every life that is truly dedicated to Him.

It would be like someone who is really sick going to the doctor. The doctor tells him, “You have a virus. You need to take this medication, and if you will do this, it will knock it out in a few days.” But instead of taking the medication, he throws it in the trash. He gets worse and worse. And he says, “I’ve tried the whole doctor thing, but it didn’t work for me.”

No, he didn’t take the medication. He didn’t do what he was supposed to do. Don’t blame the doctor.

Anyone who says that Christianity did not work for them either has never met Christ personally or did not do their part. Christ works for everyone. There are no exceptions.

There can be a point of no return. Am I suggesting there could come a point when God would not forgive someone? Not as much as I am suggesting there could come a point when they wouldn’t want to be forgiven because of their hardened hearts. God does want to forgive them. But they must come to Him.

In Jesus,
Cap'n Kenny

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Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation®, NLT® copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved. Devotion © 2017 Harvest Christian Fellowship; all rights reserved.
Some people say Christianity didn't work for them. But is that true?

Un Dia a la Vez - El juicio a los demás

El juicio a los demás

¿Por qué te fijas en la astilla que tiene tu hermano en el ojo, y no le das importancia a la viga que está en el tuyo?
~ Mateo 7:3 (NVI)

Quizá hoy sea el primer día que tomas este libro devocional en tus manos. Por eso quiero decirte que hace quince días estamos analizando los principios que nuestro Dios dejó para que tengamos una vida feliz. Este es un recorrido de veintiún días en los que estamos considerando todas las esferas que nos pueden afectar por la manera en que vivimos. Así que en oración le pedimos a Dios que nos dé entendimiento y que logremos obedecer su Palabra.

El juicio que hacemos de los demás dice mucho de nuestro carácter. No tenemos derecho a juzgar a nadie. Eso sí que es feo y es más común de lo que pensamos. Los cristianos especialmente somos ligeros para juzgar, pues somos rudos y duros con los demás.

Si alguno cae o falla, somos los primeros en hablar y evaluar.

¿Acaso olvidamos cómo hemos sido? ¿Es que no nos acordamos del fango del que nos sacó o nos rescató el Señor? Pidámosle a Dios que nos dé amor y misericordia por los demás.

Y que podamos tener en cuenta que nos medirán con la misma medida que medimos a otros.

Un Día a la Vez Copyright © by Claudia Pinzón

Standing Strong Through the Storm - NEEDED: PATIENCE AND STRENGTH


“I will rescue you from your own people and from the Gentiles. I am sending you to them to open their eyes and turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, so that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me.”
~ Acts 26:17-18 (NIV)

These words of Jesus were spoken to Saul of Tarsus en route to Damascus at the time of his conversion. Saul—later Paul—is now sharing them with King Agrippa as a personal testimony. Though God would rescue Paul, he still suffered many things for the sake of the gospel.

One of the biggest challenges to remaining faithful under persecution is the need to stay free from bitterness. Some forms of persecution are particularly hard to forgive.

Elina’s father is a pastor near Dhaka, Bangladesh. Extremists have been trying to drive him and his family away. Elina shares her story:

“One night, I woke up because I had an exam the next morning and I needed to study. When I had to go to the bathroom, there was no one with me. Some boys came and they just moved onto me. They touched me and then they took me away, but I couldn’t scream because they held my mouth.

One of those two boys raped me while the other sat there. Then I tried to run away, but I couldn’t because they caught me again. Then the other boy raped me. The boys said, ‘If you tell somebody about this, we will kill you.’” When she arrived home, Elina shouted for her dad. The two of them brought her case to the police, but they were told she had no proof. Elina and her father believe the boys paid off the police, and they’re still awaiting justice despite a medical report confirming her story.

Elina says, “They did this because we are Christians. They don’t want us here; they want us to be Muslims. They are trying to drive us out. It was difficult for me in those days. I just wanted to fly away or commit suicide, but my dad comforted me. He told me, ‘Pray more and more, so God will give you more patience and strength.’ It really helped me work it out…I have forgiven them; I have nothing against them in my heart.”

Through the prayer and support of her family, Elina is finding God’s strength amidst her pain. As a testimony to her Savior’s redemptive power, Elina has extended His grace to the boys who violated her. Still, her journey to healing is far from over; a poignant reminder of the need to pray and send encouragement to our Christian sisters facing this heinous form of persecution.

In their response to persecution, Bengali Christians like Elina send a message to us in the west: a message of faith, hope and love—even for their oppressors so they might respond to the gospel of Jesus Christ and receive His forgiveness.

RESPONSE: Today I too will pray for patience and strength to be a witness even to my enemies.

PRAYER: Pray for young Christian girls like Elina who face great personal challenges to be a witness.

Women of the Bible - Mary of Bethany

Mary of Bethany

Her name means: "Bitterness"

Her character: Mary appears to have been a single woman, totally devoted to Jesus. The gospel portrays her, by way of contrast with her sister, Martha, as a woman of few words. As Jesus neared the time of his triumphal entry into Jerusalem prior to Passover, she performed a gesture of great prophetic significance, one that offended Judas Iscariot, the disciple who betrayed Jesus.
Her sorrow: She wept at the tomb of her brother, Lazarus, and must have experienced great sorrow at the death of Jesus.
Her joy: To have done something beautiful for Christ.
Key Scriptures: Matthew 26:6-13; Mark 14:3-9; Luke 10:38-42; John 11:1-12:11

Her Story

Jerusalem was swollen with a hundred thousand worshipers, pilgrims who had come to celebrate the annual Passover feast. Every one of them, it seemed, had heard tales of the rabbi Jesus.

"I wouldn't have believed it myself if I hadn't been there," one man exclaimed. "I tell you, Lazarus drew his last breath a full four days before the Nazarene ever arrived."

"My cousin saw the whole thing," said another. "According to her, Jesus simply shouted his name and Lazarus came out of the tomb, still bound in his grave clothes."

"I hear the rabbi is coming to Jerusalem to be crowned king during Passover," said the first man.

"Better if he stayed home," said another. "The chief priests say the whole story is nonsense, that Jesus is a rabble-rouser who'll soon have the Romans up in arms against us all."

The rumors spread quickly, like floodwater spilling over a riverbank. The curious kept chasing after Mary, inquiring about her brother. Had he really been dead four days? Didn't he smell when he came stumbling out of the tomb? What was it like to live in the same house with a ghost? Did he eat and sleep? Could you see straight through him? Did he simply float through the air wherever he went?

She could hardly blame them for their crazy questions. Why shouldn't they be curious about the amazing event that had taken place in Bethany just weeks earlier? How could they know that Lazarus was as normal as any other living man? After all, raising people from the dead wasn't your everyday kind of miracle. These days she felt a rush of joy run through her, like wine overflowing a cup, whenever she looked at Lazarus. Her own flesh and blood had been called out of darkness by a man who was filled with light. How she longed to see Jesus again!

But shadows framed the edges of her happiness. No amount of celebrating could erase the memory of Jesus as he wept that day outside her brother's tomb. Even as others were celebrating the most spectacular miracle imaginable, he seemed strangely quiet. What was he thinking as he gazed at them? she wondered. She wished he would tell her, that she could plumb the secrets of his heart.

When Jesus finally returned to Bethany before the Passover, Martha served a feast in his honor. As Jesus was reclining at table with the other guests, Mary entered the room and anointed his head with a pint of expensive perfume. Its fragrance filled the whole house.

The disciple Judas Iscariot, failing to appreciate her gesture, objected strenuously: "Why wasn't this perfume sold and the money given to the poor? It was worth a year's wages." Though he cared nothing for the destitute, Judas was the keeper of the common purse, a man always looking for a chance to fatten his own pockets.

But rather than scolding Mary for her extravagance, Jesus praised her, saying: "Why are you bothering this woman? She has done a beautiful thing to me. The poor you will always have with you, but you will not always have me. When she poured this perfume on my body, she did it to prepare me for burial. I tell you the truth, whenever this gospel is preached throughout the world, what she has done will also be told in memory of her."

From her first encounter with Christ, Mary seems to have pursued one thing above all—the deepest possible relationship with him. She soaked up his teaching, took his promises to heart, listened for every change of inflection that would yield more clues about him. Love gave her insights that others missed. Somehow, she must have understood that Jesus would not enter Jerusalem to lasting acclaim but to death and dishonor. For a time, the light itself would appear to be smothered by the darkness. While everyone else was busy celebrating Jesus' triumph in raising Lazarus, Mary stood quietly beside him, sharing his grief.

Christ found Mary's extravagant act of adoration a beautiful thing, assuring everyone that she would be remembered forever for the way she lavished herself upon him. Mary of Bethany was a woman unafraid of expressing her love, determined to seek the heart of God—a prophetess whose gesture speaks eloquently even from a distance of two thousand years.

Her Promise

The Old Testament Passover lamb was only a shadow of what was to come. As our Passover Lamb, Jesus has completely and thoroughly accomplished our redemption from sin. Just as the little lamb died so that the firstborn in the Hebrew families would not die and would go free from Egypt, so Jesus, our Passover Lamb, has died so that we can be freed from our slavery to sin.

Today's reading is a brief excerpt from Women of the Bible: A One-Year Devotional Study of Women in Scripture by Ann Spangler and Jean Syswerda (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.

Girlfriends in God - You’re God’s Girl for the Job

You’re God’s Girl for the Job

Today’s Truth

I was cupbearer to the king.

Friend to Friend

“Medical Protective, may I help you?”

This was my life years ago when I worked as a secretary for an insurance company.  I was newly married and took whatever job I could find.  Being an administrative assistant wasn’t my passion or area of expertise, but it was a way to pay bills.  I did the best I could answering phones and filing medical records.

Whether you are an engineer or teacher, accountant or cook, do you know your work matters to God?  You may not be a formal missionary, but God can use you - right where you are - to do important work for the kingdom of God.

Consider Nehemiah.  He was a cupbearer to the king of Persia.  He was a trusted servant whose job was to make sure the king’s cup wasn’t poisoned and to bring joy to the king.

Nehemiah wasn’t a priest or scribe.  He was doing what might be labeled “secular” work.  Yet he was the one God used mightily to rebuild the wall of Jerusalem.  Nehemiah’s heart was grieved when he heard the terrible news of the survivors in Jerusalem being in great distress.  The wall was broken and the gates set on fire.

He wept, mourned, fasted and prayed for many days.  Nehemiah recognized his job allowed him to interact with the king, and that the king might just be the man God would use to finance the rebuilding of the wall.

One miraculous day, Nehemiah traded in his cup for a hard hat.  The king gave him the go ahead to oversee a construction project to rebuild the wall.  God was with Nehemiah and men from all occupational backgrounds worked side by side to rebuild the wall.

Eliashib the high priest rose up to build (Nehemiah 3:1).  He was joined by Uzziel the goldsmith (v. 8), Hananiah a perfumer (v. 8), Rephaiah a leader of half the district of Jerusalem (v. 9), and the Levite priests (v. 17).  Even daughters helped to make repairs (v. 12).  They were unified in the task of rebuilding the wall.  Every level of society participated.  There was not a distinction between rich and poor, between sacred and secular.

In the beginning, God created the world and the human race to subdue the earth.  Your work matters to God, and it is sacred when you dedicate it to Him.  You are God’s girl for the job.  Whether you are designing websites, negotiating deals, or cleaning up spilled milk, God can use you to further His kingdom right where you are.

Be ready and expectant.  You never know when a divine order is coming your way.

Let’s Pray

Dear Lord, it says in 1 Corinthians 10:31 whether we eat or drink, we are to do everything to the glory of God.  I dedicate my work to You.  Help me see how I can seek first the kingdom of God at my workplace.  Use me to accomplish great things with eternal value.
In Jesus’ Name,

Now It’s Your Turn

How can you bring honor to God at your workplace or in your home?

More from the Girlfriends

Perhaps one of your roles is being a wife.  Find out how you can enjoy the sacred calling of marriage even more in Arlene’s book 31 Days to Becoming a Happy Wife.

Seeking God?
Click HERE to find out more about how to have a personal
relationship with Jesus Christ.

Girlfriends in God

LHM Daily Devotion - November 6, 2017 "No One Could Survive"

If you want a dog to herd your flock of sheep, you may want to take a...
Daily Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries

By Pastor Ken Klaus, Speaker Emeritus of The Lutheran Hour

"No One Could Survive"

November 6, 2017

(Jesus said) "I am the Good Shepherd. The Good Shepherd lays down His life for the sheep. He who is a hired hand ... flees because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep. I am the Good Shepherd. I know My own and My own know Me. ... And I have other sheep that are not of this fold. I must bring them also, and they will listen to My voice. So there will be one flock, one Shepherd."

If you want a dog to herd your flock of sheep, you may want to take a look at a Border Collie. If you want a dog to protect your sheep, you need to get a Great Pyrenees. The "Pyr," which looks like a white St. Bernard, is willing to fight and to die in the protection of the flock.

Roland Hendel of Santa Rosa, California, had two such dogs. One protected their flock of goats during the day; the other did the same job through the night.

When the wildfires started to cross the valley toward his home, Hendel decided to evacuate. He got his children, their dogs and cats. Sadly, the goats had to be left behind. There was no room for them.

On his Facebook page, Hendel wrote, "Odin, our stubborn and fearless Great Pyrenees would not leave the goats."

As they drove away, the family cried because they were certain they were saying goodbye to their dog and their goats. It took some time before Hendel and his family could return to what once had been their home. The house was gone, and some of the trees were still smoldering when they arrived.

Everyone agreed that nothing living could have survived that inferno.

Everyone agreed, that is, except for the goats who showed up, seemingly out of nowhere. And Odin, their dedicated caretaker? Well, Odin didn't run to them. His limping leg prevented that.

Nevertheless, Odin did show up, along with a few baby deer who, like the flock, had been preserved, in some miraculous way, by that big hero of a dog.

Two-thousand years ago, the Lord Jesus Christ referred to Himself as the "Good Shepherd."

In the verses which followed that statement, Jesus explained exactly what that term meant to Him.
  • It meant that because He loved His sheep He would lay down His life to save them.

  • It meant that He knew His flock, and they would follow Him to safety.

  • It meant that He would call together a great flock of those who trusted His voice.
Yes, Jesus is the Shepherd, and like everything else He predicted, His prophecies here proved true. Jesus did lay down His life so His people might live. On a Roman cross, He was crucified and in a borrowed tomb His lifeless body was placed.

Everyone agreed nobody could ever survive that cross. And everyone would be right. Jesus did die.

But Jesus also ended up defeating death. He showed to all the world He was alive, and instructed His undershepherds to increase the size of the flock. They were to bring in all who had been saved by the Good Shepherd who laid down His life for the sheep.

THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, we, like sheep have gone astray. On our own we would have died. But we have been saved by the Good Shepherd who laid down His life to save us. May we gladly follow Him all the days of our lives. In His Name we pray. Amen.

Use these devotions in your newsletter and bulletin!  Used by permission; all rights reserved by the Int'l LLL (LHM).

CPTLN Devocional de 06 de Noviembre de 2017 - Una historia

Alimento Diario

Una historia

06 de Noviembre 2017

Así que, si el Hijo los liberta, serán verdaderamente libres.
~ Juan 8:36 (RVC)

Ed, de 72 años, ama a su perro Buddy. Cuando la 'perrera' se llevó a Buddy por andar suelto por la calle, Ed pagó $50 dólares de multa para que se lo devolvieran. Pero la segunda vez que Buddy fue atrapado, Ed decidió no pagar los $100 dólares de multa que le pedían, sino ir a soltarlo él mismo.

A medianoche, Ed se fue en su tractor de cortar césped hasta donde estaba Buddy y lo liberó. Lamentablemente, en el camino de regreso fue descubierto y arrestado por robo, traspaso de propiedad municipal y por dejar que el perro anduviera suelto.

Llevó unos días hasta que Ed fue dejado en libertad. Cuando eso sucedió, a Buddy ya lo habían sacrificado.

Imagino que usted estará pensando lo mismo que yo: que no es justo que, porque su dueño estaba detenido, al perro lo hubieran sacrificado.

Ahora, si la muerte del perro en esas circunstancias le parece injusta, espero que lo que le sucedió a Jesús le parezca muchísimo más injusto aún.

Hace 2.000 años, los enemigos de Jesús lo hicieron arrestar y llevar a juicio, donde presentaron testigos falsos que testificaron en su contra hasta lograr que el juez dictara la sentencia de crucifixión.

Y así fue. Jesús murió en la cruz cargando el peso de nuestras culpas. El inocente fue asesinado en lugar de los culpables... y no hubo nadie que fuera a rescatarlo.

Pero eso no quiere decir que Jesús permaneció cautivo. Porque gracias a que había hecho todo lo que era necesario, tres días después de que su cuerpo sin vida fuera puesto en la tumba, Jesús resucitó.

Gracias a su resurrección y con la fe que nos da el Espíritu Santo, sabemos que todos los que creen en él son perdonados y reciben la promesa de la vida eterna en el cielo con el Salvador, el Cristo, el Hijo de Dios.

ORACIÓN: Querido Señor, el mundo está lleno de historias tristes. Doy gracias porque tu historia no termina con tu muerte en la cruz, sino con tu gloriosa resurrección. Gracias porque tu historia es también nuestra historia. En tu nombre. Amén.

© Copyright 2017 Cristo Para Todas Las Naciones. ¡Utilice estas devociones en sus boletines! Usado con permiso. Todos los derechos reservados por la Int'l LLL.