Friday, March 29, 2019

The Daily Lectionary for FRIDAY, March 29, 2019

The Ministry of Reconciliation
2 Corinthians 5:11-15

The Daily Lectionary
FRIDAY, March 29, 2019
(Revised Common Lectionary Year C)

Psalm 32
The Joy of Forgiveness
Of David. A Maskil.
1  Happy are those whose transgression is forgiven,
     whose sin is covered.
2  Happy are those to whom the Lord imputes no iniquity,
     and in whose spirit there is no deceit.

3  While I kept silence, my body wasted away
     through my groaning all day long.
4  For day and night your hand was heavy upon me;
     my strength was dried up as by the heat of summer.    Selah

5  Then I acknowledged my sin to you,
     and I did not hide my iniquity;
   I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord,”
     and you forgave the guilt of my sin.    Selah

6  Therefore let all who are faithful
     offer prayer to you;
   at a time of distress, the rush of mighty waters
     shall not reach them.
7  You are a hiding place for me;
     you preserve me from trouble;
     you surround me with glad cries of deliverance.    Selah

8  I will instruct you and teach you the way you should go;
     I will counsel you with my eye upon you.
9  Do not be like a horse or a mule, without understanding,
     whose temper must be curbed with bit and bridle,
     else it will not stay near you.

10 Many are the torments of the wicked,
     but steadfast love surrounds those who trust in the Lord.
11 Be glad in the Lord and rejoice, O righteous,
     and shout for joy, all you upright in heart.

Joshua 4:14-24
4:14 On that day the Lord exalted Joshua in the sight of all Israel; and they stood in awe of him, as they had stood in awe of Moses, all the days of his life.

15 The Lord said to Joshua, 16 “Command the priests who bear the ark of the covenant, to come up out of the Jordan.” 17 Joshua therefore commanded the priests, “Come up out of the Jordan.” 18 When the priests bearing the ark of the covenant of the Lord came up from the middle of the Jordan, and the soles of the priests’ feet touched dry ground, the waters of the Jordan returned to their place and overflowed all its banks, as before.

19 The people came up out of the Jordan on the tenth day of the first month, and they camped in Gilgal on the east border of Jericho. 20 Those twelve stones, which they had taken out of the Jordan, Joshua set up in Gilgal, 21 saying to the Israelites, “When your children ask their parents in time to come, ‘What do these stones mean?’ 22 then you shall let your children know, ‘Israel crossed over the Jordan here on dry ground.’ 23 For the Lord your God dried up the waters of the Jordan for you until you crossed over, as the Lord your God did to the Red Sea, which he dried up for us until we crossed over, 24 so that all the peoples of the earth may know that the hand of the Lord is mighty, and so that you may fear the Lord your God forever.”

2 Corinthians 5:6-15
5:6 So we are always confident; even though we know that while we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord— 7 for we walk by faith, not by sight. 8 Yes, we do have confidence, and we would rather be away from the body and at home with the Lord. 9 So whether we are at home or away, we make it our aim to please him. 10 For all of us must appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each may receive recompense for what has been done in the body, whether good or evil.

The Ministry of Reconciliation
11 Therefore, knowing the fear of the Lord, we try to persuade others; but we ourselves are well known to God, and I hope that we are also well known to your consciences. 12 We are not commending ourselves to you again, but giving you an opportunity to boast about us, so that you may be able to answer those who boast in outward appearance and not in the heart. 13 For if we are beside ourselves, it is for God; if we are in our right mind, it is for you. 14 For the love of Christ urges us on, because we are convinced that one has died for all; therefore all have died. 15 And he died for all, so that those who live might live no longer for themselves, but for him who died and was raised for them.

Optional parts of the readings are set off in [square brackets.]

The Bible texts of the Old Testament, Epistle and Gospel lessons are from the New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Church of Christ in the USA, and used by permission.

The Daily Lectionary is a three year cyclical lectionary. We are currently in Year C. Beginning with the first Sunday of Advent in 2019, we will be in Year A. The year which ended at Advent 2018 was Year B. These readings complement the Sunday and festival readings: Thursday through Saturday readings help prepare the reader for the Sunday ahead; Monday through Wednesday readings help the reader reflect and digest on what they heard in worship. Revised Common Lectionary Daily Readings, copyright © 2005 Consultation on Common Texts.
For the love of Christ urges us on, because we are convinced that one has died for all; therefore all have died...

Verse of the Day for FRIDAY, March 29, 2019

2 Corinthians 5:21 (NIV) God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

Read all of 2 Corinthians 5

Listen to 2 Corinthians 5

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

Un dia a la Vez - Padres, apoyemos a nuestros hijos

Padres, apoyemos a nuestros hijos

Hijo mío, si tu corazón es sabio, también mi corazón se regocijará.

Hombres y mujeres que están hoy listos a leer este devocional, también les convienen que sepan lo que espera Dios de los padres.

Padres, asuman con autoridad el ser como dice Dios la cabeza y el sacerdote del hogar.

Eso significa que debes tener una relación con Dios, de modo que seas la parte más importante de esa casa. Si no asumes tu posición, las mujeres con carácter fuerte tomarán la tuya y estarás en desventaja y fuera del orden de Dios.

Papi, tú eres el proveedor. Tú eres a quien Dios creó para que mantengas tu hogar y seas un excelente administrador del mismo. Claro, si tu esposa está trabajando, las cosas entre los dos serán más fáciles. Sin embargo, ante Dios el que tiene la autoridad tiene la responsabilidad.

NO le des mal ejemplo a tu hijo para que no te avergüence.

NO te entregues cien por cien a tu trabajo o actividades de tu ministerio, a fin de que tengas tiempo para tus hijos.

NO olvides que tu primer llamado es tu familia y Dios te pedirá cuentas al respecto.

NO te apartes de los caminos de Dios, pues allí encontrarás bendición.

Honro hoy a mi esposo porque es un excelente padre de sus hijos y de mis princesas.

Gracias, mi Dios.

Un Día a la Vez Copyright © by Claudia Pinzón
Hombres y mujeres que están hoy listos a leer este devocional, también les convienen que sepan lo que espera Dios de los padres.

Standing Strong Through the Storm - THE MARTYRS HYMN


Here is a trustworthy saying: If we died with him, we will also live with him; if we endure, we will also reign with him. If we disown him, he will also disown us; if we are faithless, he remains faithful, for he cannot disown himself.

Paul is writing his last letter before execution addressed to his spiritual son, Timothy. New Testament scholars are convinced that Paul is quoting here an ancient Christian worship chorus or “hymn.” It is assessed to be one of the songs Christians sang as they were walking into the arena to face certain death. Paul himself may have sung this hymn when he was executed in Rome.

There is plenty of historical evidence that people of the pagan world were amazed at the courage and joy – often expressed in music – Christians exhibited when facing their death. Early church father, Tertullian was reportedly converted soon after first observing this exhibition of abnormal joyfulness. He later made the oft-quoted statement that “the blood of the martyrs is seed!”

The first couplet is powerful because it is in the Greek aorist tense which indicates a specific moment in the past. When Christ calls us, we die to sin and to ourselves. Therefore, the song begins, “We have already died with Him and we will therefore live with Him!” It goes on to proclaim that when we endure, we’ll reign with Him; if we deny Him, He will deny or disown us; but when we are faithless, He always remains faithful because it is a characteristic of His unchanging nature.

Korean Elder Kwan-Joon Park was called an “Elijah of Korea” or sometimes a “Daniel of modern times.” He died as a martyr for his faith in Christ and his opposition to the Japanese colonial rule during the Second World War when Korea was occupied by the Japanese Imperialists. The latter enforced Shinto worship on the Korean people.

On March 24, 1939, Elder Park went to Japan to protest against inhuman colonial policies of Japan. He walked into the 74th Imperial Diet of Japan. When the opening pronouncement of the lower house was made, he stood up from his seat in the visitor’s balcony and shouted, “This is a great mission of God, Jehovah’s great message!” Then he threw leaflets to the floor below exposing cruel abuse of Korean Christians by Japan and warning them of God’s imminent judgment and destruction of Japan as a result of her wrong doing and tyranny. They also explained the resistance against Japanese imposition of Shinto shrine worship upon Korean Christians.

Elder Park was arrested and sentenced to six years in Japanese prison. While serving his sentence he was martyred at the age of seventy. We don’t know if he sang. But one line from his last poem written during his imprisonment expresses well his firm resolution to die willingly for Jesus Christ: “Since Jesus died for me, I will die for Jesus!”

RESPONSE: Today I will resolve to live courageously even if it means facing death for Jesus who died for me. I will express my joy in living and dying for Him in every way – including singing!

PRAYER: Lord, help me to be joyful even in the face of death knowing that You are always faithful.

Standing Strong Through The Storm (SSTS), a daily devotional message by SSTS author Paul Estabrooks. © 2011 Open Doors International. Used by permission.

Men of the Bible - Gideon


His name means: "Hewer, Slasher, Hacker" 

His work: A farmer called to bring Israel back to the Lord (a task in which he partially succeeded) and to deliver God's people from their Midianite oppressors.
His character: A fearful man, living in a time when Israel had plenty to fear, Gideon questioned the Lord, demanding signs that would reassure him of God's faithfulness. Even though he was a reluctant warrior, he won a brilliant military victory and became one of Israel's greatest judges.
His triumph: That God's vision for his life turned out to be far greater than his own.
Key Scriptures: Judges 6-8

A Look at the Man

Gideon's story reminds us of the story of another man, centuries earlier, who also felt inadequate for the role God assigned him. His name was Moses, a man who had been hiding out just as Gideon had when God called him. Both Gideon and Moses made excuses, plausible-sounding ones to us though not to God. To both men God simply said, "I am sending you."

When Gideon pleaded that his clan was the weakest in Israel and he the least of his family, he was unwittingly expressing his qualifications for the job. God wasn't looking for a born leader, a man who would be great in the eyes of his own people. He wasn't searching for a self-reliant man who would take credit for every victory. He needed someone whose weakness he could use, a man whose apparent unsuitability would eventually convince his people that their God was still with them, still powerful, still loving.

It's interesting that God called Gideon a mighty warrior precisely at the moment when such a description was hardest to believe. How could Gideon comprehend it when his own idea of himself was so contrary to God's idea? Because of the Lord's remarkable patience, Gideon was eventually able to overcome his doubts and become the man God intended him to be. By believing in God, he lived out his life, not as a timid man, but as a warrior who had won a brilliant victory.

Many of us are like Moses and Gideon were at the moment God first called them. We are hiding out, living our own lives, reluctant to alter the status quo, unable to believe we are capable of any kind of greatness. But God describes his plan for our lives, not in our terms, but in his. And that's how it should be, because he's the only one who knows who we really are and what his power can do within us. If we want to experience God shaping our lives and using us—in our families, our churches, and our communities—we will have to set aside our own vision for ourselves in order to embrace his. Anyone who does that will one day look back, not with regret, but with gratitude, amazed at the great things God has done in a life yielded to him.

Reflect On: Judges 6:36–40
Praise God: For his patience.
Offer Thanks: For the guidance God gives.
Confess: Any doubts you may have about God's desire to guide you.
Ask God: To help you use "the strength you have" as you seek to do his will.

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.
Gideon's story reminds us of the story of another man, centuries earlier, who also felt inadequate for the role God assigned him. His name was Moses, a man who had been hiding out just as Gideon had when God called him.

Girlfriends in God - When Forgetting Is Not Enough

When Forgetting Is Not Enough

Today’s Truth

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, 4 who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.”

Friend to Friend

I’ve had some things to happen in my life that I would just as soon forget. I bet you have too. But as soon as I start to shred the memory and throw it in the trash, God says, “Hold up. I’ve got a good purpose for that bad story.”

Joseph learned that lesson, too. Joseph had been sold into slavery by his jealous brothers, falsely accused of sexual harassment, and left in a prison to die. Then God miraculous rescued him from prison and made him second in command to the Egyptian Pharaoh. By his thirty-seventh birthday, Joseph had two sons. One he named Manasseh, which means “God has made me forget all my trouble and all my father’s household.”

The second son he named Ephraim, which means “it is because God has made me fruitful in the land of my suffering.”

Many years after his sons had been born, Joseph learned that his father, Jacob, was ill.  So he took his two sons, Manasseh and Ephraim and traveled for one last visit.

When they arrived, Jacob said, “Bring the boys to me so I may bless them.”

Joseph brought his sons to his father’s bedside. He placed Ephraim on his right toward Jacob’s left hand and Manasseh, his first born, on his left toward Jacob’s right hand. But instead of giving the blessing to Joseph’s firstborn, Jacob reached out his right hand and put it on Ephraim’s head, though he was the younger. Then he crossed his arms and put his left hand on Manasseh’s head.

Joseph tried to stop his father from giving the blessing to the second born rather than the firstborn, but his father refused.

“I know, my son, I know. He too will become a people, and he too will become great.  Nevertheless, his younger brother will be greater than he, and his descendants will become a group of nations” (Genesis 48:19). So he put Ephraim ahead of Manasseh.

What a beautiful picture. Yes, Joseph had a life of trouble and suffering at the hands of those who abused, neglected and betrayed him. But God didn’t want him to merely forget his suffering as the name Manasseh implied. He wanted him to be fruitful in his suffering as the name Ephraim implied.

It is the same with you and with me. God does not want us to simply forget the pain of the past. He wants us to be fruitful in the land of our suffering! Use it for good. Go back to today’s truth. God doesn’t comfort us just to make us comfortable. He comforts us to make us comfort-able. Able to comfort those with the comfort we have received. That is the good fruit. How is God calling you to use your seemingly bad stories for a good purpose?

Let’s Pray

Dear Lord, I thank You that nothing is ever wasted in our life experiences. The world says, “Just forget about it” when it comes to our past struggles. You say, “Just use it! Be fruitful!” Show me ways that I can use what I have gone through to help other people. Lord I pray that You will make me fruitful in the land of my suffering.
In Jesus’ Name,

Now It’s Your Turn

Have you simply tried to just forget about your past? It doesn’t work, does it?

What have you gone through in your life that you could now use to help someone else?

Read Romans 8:28. What do you think that means in light of the hurts and pains in your past?

More from the Girlfriends

God longs for you to do more than just “forget about it.” He wants you to turn those “all things” that Romans 8:28 talks about into ministry opportunities! Sister, when you begin to use your past mistakes and hurts for the glory of God, Satan has no more power over you! He can’t use it against you any longer. I don’t know about you, but that makes me want to shout! Are you ready to turn your hurt into hope, your pain into purpose, and your messes into ministry? Then see my book, Your Scars are Beautiful to God: Finding Peace and Purpose in the Hurts of Your Past. I’ll be cheering you on!

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

Girlfriends in God
I’ve had some things to happen in my life that I would just as soon forget. I bet you have too. But as soon as I start to shred the memory and throw it in the trash, God says...

LHM Daily Devotions - POWER GAMES


Mar. 29, 2019

First they led Him to Annas, for he was the father-in-law of Caiaphas, who was high priest that year.
~ John 18:13 (ESV)

Annas was the power behind the throne. He had been high priest himself, and after the Romans removed him from office, each of his five sons took a turn as high priest. So did one son-in-law—Caiaphas. Annas might have been out of power officially, but everyone knew who was pulling the strings behind the scenes.

Small wonder they brought Jesus to Annas first. And Annas started meddling—questioning Jesus, instead of leaving Him for Caiaphas, the official high priest that year, to deal with. What's worse, he chose to question Jesus rather than handling things in the proper legal way—producing witnesses who could testify to a crime. Nowadays we call this "going on a fishing expedition"—Annas was hoping Jesus would incriminate Himself.

Jesus pointed out the illegality. "I have spoken openly to the world. I have always taught in synagogues and in the temple, where all Jews come together. I have said nothing in secret. Why do you ask Me? Ask those who have heard Me what I said to them; they know what I said" (John 18:20-21). A nearby officer hit Jesus, saying, "Is that how You answer the high priest?"

Power versus powerlessness. But who was the powerful one? On the surface, it appears to be Annas. He has the office and authority (well, sort of). He is running the interrogation. He is the one who has guards to enforce his will.

And yet Annas can do nothing with all his power. Jesus refuses to cooperate. He is not afraid to point out the wrong Annas is committing. Even a blow doesn't change Jesus' mind. It merely gives Him another illegality to point out. Annas gives up and sends Jesus to Caiaphas.

These power games look familiar, don't they? The world we live in is full of power, much of it used wrongly and illegitimately. It's a scary time to be alive for many of us.

And yet, we don't need to be afraid. Our true High Priest, Jesus, is with us now, whenever we are in danger or need. Jesus watches over us with God's own authority and power, and nothing escapes His notice. No evil will be able to destroy us. Jesus will keep us in His care forever.

THE PRAYER: Father, thank You for protecting us from all the powers of evil in our world. Amen.

  • Have you ever been treated wrongly by those in power? How did it make you feel?
  • "Non-violent resistance" is another term for Jesus' behavior before Annas. Have you ever done this? If so, when?
  • How has God protected you when you were in danger from corrupt authorities (of any kind)?

Lenten Devotions were written by Dr. Kari Vo. Use these devotions in your newsletter and bulletin! Used by permission; all rights reserved by the Int'l LLL (LHM).
Have you ever been treated wrongly by those in power? How did it make you feel?

Devocional de la CPTLN del 29 de Marzo de 2019 - Juegos de poder


Juegos de poder

29 de Marzo de 2019

... y lo llevaron primeramente a Anás, que era suegro de Caifás, porque ese año era sumo sacerdote.
~ Juan 18:13 (RVC)

Anás era el poder detrás del trono. Él mismo había sido sumo sacerdote, y después de que los romanos lo destituyeron de su cargo, cada uno de sus cinco hijos y su yerno Caifás tomaron un turno como sumo sacerdote. No es de extrañar que primero llevaran a Jesús ante Anás. Y Anás comenzó a comprometerse, cuestionando a Jesús y buscando testigos falsos, en vez de manejar las cosas legalmente.

Jesús señaló su ilegalidad. "Yo he hablado al mundo abiertamente. Siempre he enseñado en la sinagoga y en el templo, donde se reúnen todos los judíos. Nunca he dicho nada en secreto. ¿Por qué me preguntas a mí? Pregúntales a los que han oído, de qué les he hablado. Ellos saben lo que he dicho" (Juan 18:20-21). Uno de los alguaciles que estaba allí le dio una bofetada y le dijo: "¿Y así le respondes al sumo sacerdote?".

Poder contra impotencia. ¿Pero quién era el poderoso? En la superficie parece ser Anás. Él tiene el puesto importante y la autoridad, y es quien está realizando el interrogatorio y quien tiene guardias para hacer cumplir sus órdenes.

Sin embargo, Anás no puede hacer nada. Jesús se niega a cooperar. Él no teme señalar el mal que Anás está cometiendo. Ni un golpe lo hace cambiar de opinión. Simplemente le da otra ilegalidad para señalar. Anás se rinde y envía a Jesús a Caifás.

Estos juegos de poder nos resultan familiares. Nuestro mundo está lleno de poder, en su mayoría utilizado en forma incorrecta o ilegítima.

Y, sin embargo, no hay nada que temer. Jesús, nuestro verdadero sumo sacerdote, está con nosotros siempre. Jesús nos cuida con la autoridad y el poder de Dios; nada escapa a su atención. Ningún mal podrá destruirnos.

ORACIÓN: Padre, gracias por protegernos de todos los poderes del mal en este mundo. Amén.

  • Si alguna vez has sufrido por abuso de poder, ¿cómo te sentiste?
  • "Resistencia pasiva" es otro término para el comportamiento de Jesús ante Anás. ¿Alguna vez lo has hecho?

© Copyright 2019 Cristo Para Todas Las Naciones. Que a través de estos devocionales, la Palabra de Dios te refresque en tu diario caminar.
Si alguna vez has sufrido por abuso de poder, ¿cómo te sentiste?

Lời Sống Hằng Ngày - Chiếu Ra Ánh Sáng

Chiếu Ra Ánh Sáng

Đọc: Phi-líp 2:12-18 | Đọc Kinh Thánh suốt năm: Các Quan Xét 7-8; Lu-ca 5:1-16

Các con là ánh sáng cho thế gian. Ma-thi-ơ 5:14
Mùa hè năm 2015, một nhóm tín hữu trong Hội thánh chúng tôi được thức tỉnh bởi những gì họ nhìn thấy tại Mathare, một trong những khu ổ chuột tại Nairobi, Kenya. Chúng tôi đến thăm một ngôi trường với nền nhà bẩn thỉu, vách tường kim loại bị rỉ sét và những băng ghế gỗ. Nhưng tương phản với khung cảnh vô cùng tầm thường đó là một con người nổi bật.

Tên cô là Brilliant, và tên đó thật phù hợp với cô. Cô là giáo viên tiểu học, luôn có niềm vui và sự quyết tâm để hoàn tất nhiệm vụ của mình. Cô luôn mặc trang phục nhiều màu sắc, diện mạo và niềm vui của cô khi dạy dỗ và khích lệ bọn trẻ thật tuyệt vời.

Ánh sáng mà Brilliant mang đến cho mọi người xung quanh giống như cách mà các Cơ Đốc nhân tại Phi-líp được đặt để trong thế giới của họ khi Phao-lô viết thư cho họ ở thế kỷ thứ nhất. Tương phản với khung cảnh thế giới nghèo thiếu về thuộc linh, những người tin Chúa Jêsus phải “chiếu rọi như các vì sao sáng giữa bầu trời tối tăm” (Phi. 2:15, BHĐ). Nhiệm vụ của chúng ta không thay đổi. Chiếu ra ánh sáng là điều cần làm ở mọi nơi! Thật khích lệ biết bao khi biết rằng bởi “Đấng đang hành động trong anh em, để anh em vừa muốn vừa làm theo ý tốt của Ngài” (c.13), những người tin Chúa có thể chiếu sáng bằng những cách đúng như lời Chúa Jêsus mô tả về người theo Ngài. Ngài vẫn phán với chúng ta: “Các con là ánh sáng cho thế gian… ánh sáng của các con phải chiếu sáng trước mặt mọi người, để họ thấy những việc làm tốt đẹp của các con và ca ngợi Cha các con ở trên trời” (Mat. 5:14-16).
Làm thế nào để bạn có thể bày tỏ ánh sáng của Đấng Christ cho người khác? Bạn sẽ làm gì để mang niềm vui của Ngài đến cho những người đang cần?
Hãy chiếu sáng thế giới bằng cách phản chiếu ánh sáng của Chúa Jêsus.

© 2019 Lời Sống Hằng Ngày
Mùa hè năm 2015, một nhóm tín hữu trong Hội thánh chúng tôi được thức tỉnh bởi những gì họ nhìn thấy tại Mathare, một trong những khu ổ chuột tại Nairobi, Kenya. Chúng tôi đến thăm một ngôi trường với nền nhà bẩn thỉu, vách tường kim loại bị rỉ sét và những băng ghế gỗ. Nhưng tương phản với khung cảnh vô cùng tầm thường đó là một con người nổi bật.