Wednesday, November 8, 2017

The Daily Readings for WEDNESDAY, November 8, 2017

The Rejection of Jesus at Nazareth
Daily Readings

Nehemiah 13:4-22
Now before this, the priest Eliashib, who was appointed over the chambers of the house of our God, and who was related to Tobiah, prepared for Tobiah a large room where they had previously put the grain offering, the frankincense, the vessels, and the tithes of grain, wine, and oil, which were given by commandment to the Levites, singers, and gatekeepers, and the contributions for the priests. While this was taking place I was not in Jerusalem, for in the thirty-second year of King Artaxerxes of Babylon I went to the king. After some time I asked leave of the king and returned to Jerusalem. I then discovered the wrong that Eliashib had done on behalf of Tobiah, preparing a room for him in the courts of the house of God. And I was very angry, and I threw all the household furniture of Tobiah out of the room. Then I gave orders and they cleansed the chambers, and I brought back the vessels of the house of God, with the grain offering and the frankincense. I also found out that the portions of the Levites had not been given to them; so that the Levites and the singers, who had conducted the service, had gone back to their fields. So I remonstrated with the officials and said, "Why is the house of God forsaken?" And I gathered them together and set them in their stations. Then all Judah brought the tithe of the grain, wine, and oil into the storehouses. And I appointed as treasurers over the storehouses the priest Shelemiah, the scribe Zadok, and Pedaiah of the Levites, and as their assistant Hanan son of Zaccur son of Mattaniah, for they were considered faithful; and their duty was to distribute to their associates. Remember me, O my God, concerning this, and do not wipe out my good deeds that I have done for the house of my God and for his service. In those days I saw in Judah people treading wine presses on the sabbath, and bringing in heaps of grain and loading them on donkeys; and also wine, grapes, figs, and all kinds of burdens, which they brought into Jerusalem on the sabbath day; and I warned them at that time against selling food. Tyrians also, who lived in the city, brought in fish and all kinds of merchandise and sold them on the sabbath to the people of Judah, and in Jerusalem. Then I remonstrated with the nobles of Judah and said to them, "What is this evil thing that you are doing, profaning the sabbath day? Did not your ancestors act in this way, and did not our God bring all this disaster on us and on this city? Yet you bring more wrath on Israel by profaning the sabbath." When it began to be dark at the gates of Jerusalem before the sabbath, I commanded that the doors should be shut and gave orders that they should not be opened until after the sabbath. And I set some of my servants over the gates, to prevent any burden from being brought in on the sabbath day. Then the merchants and sellers of all kinds of merchandise spent the night outside Jerusalem once or twice. But I warned them and said to them, "Why do you spend the night in front of the wall? If you do so again, I will lay hands on you." From that time on they did not come on the sabbath. And I commanded the Levites that they should purify themselves and come and guard the gates, to keep the sabbath day holy. Remember this also in my favor, O my God, and spare me according to the greatness of your steadfast love.

Revelation 12:1-12
A great portent appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars. She was pregnant and was crying out in birth pangs, in the agony of giving birth. Then another portent appeared in heaven: a great red dragon, with seven heads and ten horns, and seven diadems on his heads. His tail swept down a third of the stars of heaven and threw them to the earth. Then the dragon stood before the woman who was about to bear a child, so that he might devour her child as soon as it was born. And she gave birth to a son, a male child, who is to rule all the nations with a rod of iron. But her child was snatched away and taken to God and to his throne; and the woman fled into the wilderness, where she has a place prepared by God, so that there she can be nourished for one thousand two hundred sixty days. And war broke out in heaven; Michael and his angels fought against the dragon. The dragon and his angels fought back, but they were defeated, and there was no longer any place for them in heaven. The great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent, who is called the Devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world-- he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him. Then I heard a loud voice in heaven, proclaiming, "Now have come the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God and the authority of his Messiah, for the accuser of our comrades has been thrown down, who accuses them day and night before our God. But they have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for they did not cling to life even in the face of death. Rejoice then, you heavens and those who dwell in them! But woe to the earth and the sea, for the devil has come down to you with great wrath, because he knows that his time is short!"

Matthew 13:53-58
When Jesus had finished these parables, he left that place. He came to his hometown and began to teach the people in their synagogue, so that they were astounded and said, "Where did this man get this wisdom and these deeds of power? Is not this the carpenter's son? Is not his mother called Mary? And are not his brothers James and Joseph and Simon and Judas? And are not all his sisters with us? Where then did this man get all this?" And they took offense at him. But Jesus said to them, "Prophets are not without honor except in their own country and in their own house." And he did not do many deeds of power there, because of their unbelief.

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 WEDNESDAY, November 8, 2017

Almighty God our heavenly Father, guide the nations of the world into the way of justice and truth, and establish among them that peace which is the fruit of righteousness, that they may become the kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Verse of the Day for WEDNESDAY, November 8, 2017

Joshua 24:15 (NIV) But if serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.”

Read all of Joshua 24

Listen to Joshua 24

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 - The Importance of Right Motives

The Importance of Right Motives

"And whoever does not bear his cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple."
~ Luke 14:27 (NKJV)

Jesus was becoming very popular in His ministry—maybe too much so. People followed Him in great numbers. The crowds swelled on a daily basis. But Jesus looked at these people and, being God, knew their motives.

He recognized that most of them were not interested in spiritual things at all. They wanted to be dazzled by a few miracles. Others heard that He had fed the hungry. A few hoped He would overthrow Rome and establish the kingdom of God.

There were various reasons people had for following Him, but He realized many of them were following Him for the wrong reason. Thus, He made a series of statements intentionally designed to thin out the ranks. He wanted to be left with those who really wanted to follow Him—not fair-weather followers but true, committed disciples and soldiers.

In the same way in the church today, there are many people who are not really interested in the spiritual. God wants us to follow Him for the right motives.

Jesus said, “Whoever does not bear his cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple. . . . Whoever of you does not forsake all that he has cannot be My disciple” (Luke 14: 27, 33). Here Jesus laid out plainly what it is to be His disciple, to be a soldier in His service.

God has an unusual set of mathematics. He subtracts in order to multiply. Sometimes we think bigger is always better. But these words of Jesus show that He is more interested in quality than He is in quantity. Yes, He wants everyone to come into the Kingdom. He wants everyone to believe. But He wants us to come with the right motives, because a halfhearted soldier can be more of a liability than an asset.

In Jesus,
Cap'n Kenny

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Scripture taken from the New King James Version®, NKJV® Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Devotion © 2017 Harvest Christian Fellowship; all rights reserved.
God wants us to follow with the right motives!

Un Dia a la Vez - La puerta estrecha

La puerta estrecha

Pero estrecha es la puerta y angosto el camino que conduce a la vida, y son pocos los que la encuentran.
~ Mateo 7:14 (NVI)

Me llamó mucho la atención encontrar dentro de las cosas que Dios espera de nosotros algo que he escuchado, y hasta repetido: «¡Ah! Esa persona salió por la puerta grande». También se dice: «Quisiera salir por la puerta grande». Estas frases las usamos cuando queremos salir de un trabajo y quedar bien con todo el mundo. Cuando se va a cambiar de trabajo o de iglesia, a veces decimos: «Hay que dejar la puerta abierta», que también significa quedar bien con nuestros pastores, jefes o compañeros, ya que si algún día Dios nos lleva al mismo trabajo, estaremos preparados.

Al leer hoy este pasaje de la Biblia en Mateo, la puerta grande no se interpreta de la misma manera. Por el contrario, Dios dice que entremos por la puerta estrecha que nos lleva a la vida eterna, pues la puerta ancha, por ser más espaciosa, conduce a la perdición. En otras palabras, es más fácil perderse que guardarse.

Por eso debemos entender que aunque a veces el camino es difícil, angosto y hasta espinoso, si está bajo la voluntad de Dios, nos lleva a la bendición. Lo que es fácil, demasiado llamativo, tentador o sospechoso, no siempre está Dios de por medio. Recordemos que el enemigo nos pone a la vista cosas atractivas a fin de distraernos y apartarnos de la voluntad de nuestro Padre.

Un Día a la Vez Copyright © by Claudia Pinzón

Standing Strong Through the Storm - FAITH IN THE MIDST OF ASHES


But now, this is what the LORD says…“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.
~ Isaiah 43:1-2 (NIV)

Twenty-eight-year-old evangelist Wako Halekie works in the town of Tuka Argiso in the border area between Ethiopia and Kenya. This small town is mostly inhabited by Borena livestock herders and is effectively divided between Oromia and Somali regional states. As a result both states are claiming ownership over Tuka Argiso. The federal government tried to hold a referendum to resolve the dispute, but they were unsuccessful.

Three years ago, Wako Halekie was assigned by his church to work as a missionary among the livestock herders in Tuka-Argiso. Despite their nomadic existence, Wako was able to plant three churches with an average of fifty members in each congregation. He attributes the positive growth to God’s blessing on the ministry. But Islamic presence in Tuka-Argiso is growing progressively. Muslim missionaries from neighbouring villages are determined to Islamize all Borenas which rouses concern in the Christian community.

Wako says, “They regard my activities as an obstacle to their mission. I was alerted by some villagers about their antagonistic feelings towards me. Recently the Muslim missionaries criticised the Christian faith openly and tried to confuse our members.”

On March 30th, 2011, Wako left home for a routine visit to new Christian converts. In the early morning hours of March 31st, one of the three houses at his residence was set afire. The fire spread to the second and third house where his wife, newborn baby and their two older children were sleeping. Both the first and second house burnt to the ground. By the grace of God neighbours managed to rescue Wako’s family from the blaze just in time before the third house’s roof crashed in. None of their belongings were spared.

Mrs. Haleki said, “I heard a distant noise but thought I was dreaming. The next thing I knew, people broke through the door and dragged me and the children from the smoke. I was shocked and speechless.” She was still recovering from the birth of their third child a week before.

Wako says, “I know the purpose of this fire was to destroy me and my family. But God intervened and saved my wife and children. God is faithful to His words! As it was written in the book of Isaiah 43:1-3; we will not fear their threats. God is our Redeemer. They thought I would leave the village, but I will not wave from the calling God bestowed on me. I took my wife’s hands and together we stood in the midst of the ashes and gave thanks to the name of the Lord. By His grace I will continue serving Him right here in this village until the day He has helped me reach the entire village.”

RESPONSE: Today I will trust God to fulfill His promises even when going through fire and flood.

PRAYER: Pray for Evangelist Wako and his family working in difficult circumstances and pressures.

Girlfriends in God - A Truth That Will Change Your Life

A Truth That Will Change Your Life

Today’s Truth

Nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.
~ Romans 8:39b (NLT)

Friend to Friend

One blessing of being in women’s ministry is the friendships I have with other women in ministry. We are our own little band of sisters. Sisters with a mission! We cheer for one another, cry with one another, laugh with one another, pray for one another, and rejoice with one another.

One sister I’ve had the opportunity to lock arms with for the journey is named Renee. Renee is a talented God-fearing, Bible-teaching speaker and writer.

Several years ago, Renee traveled across the country to speak at a women’s retreat. When she got there, a few unexpected circumstances caused her to send out an “SOS, pray-for-me-now” email to her ministry sisters.

I got the email and hit my knees.

Early the next week, Renee sent us an email thanking us for praying and telling us what God did in the hearts of women at that retreat. She told us that she spoke about the lies that we believe as women and told personal and biblical stories that illuminated God’s truth. Then, at the final session, Renee asked the women to consider what they believed to be true about themselves.

Her challenge went something like this: “When you settle your soul long enough to simply be still—when you pause to listen to your heart—what do you hear? Are there lies that linger in your heart knowingly or unknowingly?”

She encouraged them to write down on a note card the lies they had accepted as truth, whether lies spoken by a parent, kids in the schoolyard, a friend, a family member, a spouse, a child, a pastor, or a stranger. She told them that some of the lies might never have been spoken at all, just believed.

When they finished she invited them to bring the cards to a wooden cross at the front of the room. Next to the cross she had placed baskets filled with promises from God’s Word, and after each woman nailed her card to the cross, she picked up a truth that would replace her lies.

Tears ran down cheek after cheek as the women brought their lies to the cross and embraced God’s life-changing Words. Guilt was forgiven and sorrows were traded for joy that day. Then a beautiful celebration went down. God, through his Holy Spirit, revealed His heart to those sweet women and shattered the lies of the enemy.

After the retreat was over, Renee looked through the cards that had been nailed to the cross. One card jumped out at her. Written over and over was one word: Worthless!

The woman who wrote that wasn’t the only one at that retreat who felt that way. That same word—worthless—was penned on many of the cards that weekend. It represents a lie that has been believed by most every woman at some point in her life. There have been days, weeks, and months that I’ve believed it myself.

It’s one of Satan’s favorite words to throw at us, and it is a big, fat, ugly LIE.

The Bible clearly shows us that we are valued in the sight of the Lord. When we allow God’s Word to flood our lives with truth we are changed by the height, the depth, and the width of His love for us.

“Take in with all Christians the extravagant dimensions of Christ’s love. Reach out and experience the breadth! Test its length! Plumb the depths! Rise to the heights! Live full lives, full in the fullness of God” (Ephesians 3:18–19, MSG).

God loves you with a personal love.

He knows your name.

He considers you highly valuable.

He adores you.

No matter what you’ve believed in the past, choose by faith today to believe this one truth: you are perfectly loved by God.

Let’s Pray

Dear Lord, Thank you for loving me, cherishing me, and for seeing me as valuable. Please help me to recognize any lies that my heart may perceive as truth, and strengthen me to trade in my sorrow for your joy.
In Jesus’ Name,

Now It’s Your Turn

What does your heart hear when you are still?

What lies would you write on that card?

Meditate on the following Psalm (Read it silently; then out loud.)
Praise the Lord, my soul; all my inmost being, praise his holy name. Praise the Lord, my soul, and forget not all his benefits—who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion, who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.” (Psalm 103:1-5)

Now, spend a few moments writing in your journal or swing over to my blog and write a prayer response on my wall.

More from the Girlfriends

Today’s devotion is an excerpt from Gwen Smith’s book Broken into Beautiful. This book is filled with stories – real stories … gritty and honest, not cleaned up and phony… and with Scripture that will inspire you toward the life-changing grace of Jesus. Get thebook discounted from her site when you use the coupon code: 20OFF. Click here to get yours now.

Gwen’s latest book, I WANT IT ALL, is a passionate call to follow God with great expectation for the impact, the challenge—and the blessing—that comes from dreaming big dreams and believing that God keeps his promises. I WANT IT ALLwill challenge you to experience more faith, more power, and more impact. More of Jesus. All of Jesus. Everything that God has for you. Order yours today from Amazon, Barnes & Noble or

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 8, 2017 "Golden Ruling"

Teenager Lauralie Mufute had been asked to sing the anthem at the New...
Daily Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries

By Pastor Ken Klaus, Speaker Emeritus of The Lutheran Hour

"Golden Ruling"

November 8, 2017

(Jesus said) "So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets."
~ Matthew 7:12 (ESV)

Teenager Lauralie Mufute had been asked to sing the anthem at the New Jersey Devils' hockey game at the Prudential Center. In front of the crowd of more than 14,000 she began, and she did well, until she got to the line "through the perilous fight."

That's when her memory failed her.

She took a breath and began again, and her memory failed her again. But not to worry. That crowd had seen what had happened, and their hearts went out to her. That's why, when Mufute stopped the second time, some 14,000 fans were prepared to do the right thing. Without any kind of cue or coaching, all joined together to help her out.

Reports from those who were there said it was "the most amazing anthem I ever witnessed."

I have seen that same kind of sprit at a Christian congregation. I remember a Sunday morning when the pastor was standing before the altar ready to lead the congregation in prayer. His mind was not exactly where it should have been. He had mentally jumped forward in the service because when they brought the collection plates forward, the elder had handed him a list of five names which had to be added to various prayers that were coming up.

That is why his mind was on autopilot when he said, "Let us now join together in the prayer which the Savior has taught us: 'Come Lord, Jesus, be our Guest ...'"

Realizing what had just happened, the pastor immediately had four revelations. In order, they were
  • "I hear the congregation snickering rather than praying with me; that's not right";

  • "I have just made a very big mistake";

  • "How do I start over with dignity?";

  • "My congregation is not going to ever let me forget this."
He was right about number four. They never let him forget. Now that congregation could have said, "What kind of minister is it that doesn't know the Lord's Prayer? He is embarrassing us." Yes, they could have said that, but nobody did. But, whenever the opportunity presented itself, with a good-natured grin, they'd say, "Pastor Klaus, would you lead us in the Lord's Prayer? You do remember how it goes, don't you?"

There you have it: two stories, both of which illustrate how Jesus' Golden Rule has been applied.

The great tragedy is that the Golden Rule is not applied often enough. There are a lot of reasons for that. Sometimes people don't think of it; sometimes people are just plain nasty; other times it is a way to make them feel superior. Whatever the reason, it is not the way the Lord expects His people to show appreciation for the forgiveness and salvation He has won for them.

He knows the world is watching His people and judging Him by what they do. That's why He encourages another standard for our lives. And, by the way, so did Luther, when he said we "should put the best construction on everything."

THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, let us see people with eyes of love. Help us look past their mistakes and do all we can to glorify the Savior by building others up. This we ask into the Name of our crucified and ever-living Lord. Amen.

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

CPTLN Devocional de 08 de Noviembre de 2017

Alimento Diario

Choques pequeños

08 de Noviembre 2017

Si confesamos nuestros pecados, él es fiel y justo para perdonar nuestros pecados y limpiarnos de toda maldad.
~ 1 Juan 1:9 (RVC)

Los empleados no lo podían creer. A un auto parado en el estacionamiento le habían chocado el guardabarros. En realidad no es para sorprenderse, porque ese tipo de choques sucede a menudo.

Pero lo que sí es para sorprenderse es la nota que había en el parabrisas, que decía: "Las personas que me vieron chocar su auto me están viendo escribir esta nota, y piensan que le estoy dejando mi nombre y dirección para que me llame y le pueda dar el número de mi seguro para que se encarguen de arreglar su auto. Como verá, no estoy escribiendo nada de eso. Usted nunca sabrá quién le chocó el auto. Espero que tenga un buen seguro, porque yo no tengo ninguno".

¿Detestable, no?

Aunque, si somos honestos, debemos admitir que hemos hecho lo mismo. Muchos de nosotros rehusamos hacernos cargo de nuestros errores y pecados. Tratamos de cubrirlos para que nadie se dé cuenta y nos juzgue, así todos piensan lo mejor de nosotros.

Muchos de nosotros creemos que podemos engañar a los demás la mayoría de las veces, y es cierto que a veces podemos, pero nunca podemos engañar al Señor. Él sabe todos los "pequeños choques" que tenemos, y no se alegra para nada con ellos.

Para que nuestros "pequeños choques" fueran cubiertos y nuestros pecados perdonados, el Señor envió a su Hijo como sustituto nuestro ante la ley, para resistir las tentaciones del diablo y conquistar la muerte.

Jesús nos perdona y nos salva. Todo lo que nos pide es que reconozcamos nuestro pecado y apreciemos el pago que él hizo de nuestras deudas. Juan lo dijo mejor que yo: "Si confesamos nuestros pecados, Dios, que es fiel y justo, nos los perdonará y nos limpiará de toda maldad".

Lo que quiere decir que no necesitamos más cubrir lo que hacemos mal.

ORACIÓN: Querido Señor, gracias por enviar a tu Hijo a salvarme y perdonarme. Hoy vengo a ti con corazón humilde y te pido que perdones mis pecados. En el nombre de Cristo. Amén.

De una devoción escrita originalmente para "By the Way"

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