Friday, May 10, 2019

The Daily Lectionary for FRIDAY, May 10, 2019

The 144,000 of Israel Sealed
Revelation 6:1—7:4

The Daily Lectionary
FRIDAY, May 10, 2019
(Revised Common Lectionary Year C)

Psalm 23
The Divine Shepherd
A Psalm of David.
1  The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.
2    He makes me lie down in green pastures;
   he leads me beside still waters;
3    he restores my soul.
   He leads me in right paths
     for his name’s sake.

4  Even though I walk through the darkest valley,
     I fear no evil;
   for you are with me;
     your rod and your staff—
     they comfort me.

5  You prepare a table before me
     in the presence of my enemies;
   you anoint my head with oil;
     my cup overflows.
6  Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
     all the days of my life,
   and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord
     my whole life long.

Ezekiel 20:39-44
20:39 As for you, O house of Israel, thus says the Lord God: Go serve your idols, every one of you now and hereafter, if you will not listen to me; but my holy name you shall no more profane with your gifts and your idols.

40 For on my holy mountain, the mountain height of Israel, says the Lord God, there all the house of Israel, all of them, shall serve me in the land; there I will accept them, and there I will require your contributions and the choicest of your gifts, with all your sacred things. 41 As a pleasing odor I will accept you, when I bring you out from the peoples, and gather you out of the countries where you have been scattered; and I will manifest my holiness among you in the sight of the nations. 42 You shall know that I am the Lord, when I bring you into the land of Israel, the country that I swore to give to your ancestors. 43 There you shall remember your ways and all the deeds by which you have polluted yourselves; and you shall loathe yourselves for all the evils that you have committed. 44 And you shall know that I am the Lord, when I deal with you for my name’s sake, not according to your evil ways, or corrupt deeds, O house of Israel, says the Lord God.

Revelation 6:1—7:4
The Seven Seals
6:1 Then I saw the Lamb open one of the seven seals, and I heard one of the four living creatures call out, as with a voice of thunder, “Come!” 2 I looked, and there was a white horse! Its rider had a bow; a crown was given to him, and he came out conquering and to conquer.

3 When he opened the second seal, I heard the second living creature call out, “Come!” 4 And out came another horse, bright red; its rider was permitted to take peace from the earth, so that people would slaughter one another; and he was given a great sword.

5 When he opened the third seal, I heard the third living creature call out, “Come!” I looked, and there was a black horse! Its rider held a pair of scales in his hand, 6 and I heard what seemed to be a voice in the midst of the four living creatures saying, “A quart of wheat for a day’s pay, and three quarts of barley for a day’s pay, but do not damage the olive oil and the wine!”

7 When he opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature call out, “Come!” 8 I looked and there was a pale green horse! Its rider’s name was Death, and Hades followed with him; they were given authority over a fourth of the earth, to kill with sword, famine, and pestilence, and by the wild animals of the earth.

9 When he opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slaughtered for the word of God and for the testimony they had given; 10 they cried out with a loud voice, “Sovereign Lord, holy and true, how long will it be before you judge and avenge our blood on the inhabitants of the earth?” 11 They were each given a white robe and told to rest a little longer, until the number would be complete both of their fellow servants and of their brothers and sisters, who were soon to be killed as they themselves had been killed.

12 When he opened the sixth seal, I looked, and there came a great earthquake; the sun became black as sackcloth, the full moon became like blood, 13 and the stars of the sky fell to the earth as the fig tree drops its winter fruit when shaken by a gale. 14 The sky vanished like a scroll rolling itself up, and every mountain and island was removed from its place. 15 Then the kings of the earth and the magnates and the generals and the rich and the powerful, and everyone, slave and free, hid in the caves and among the rocks of the mountains, 16 calling to the mountains and rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the face of the one seated on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb; 17 for the great day of their wrath has come, and who is able to stand?”

The 144,000 of Israel Sealed
7:1 After this I saw four angels standing at the four corners of the earth, holding back the four winds of the earth so that no wind could blow on earth or sea or against any tree. 2 I saw another angel ascending from the rising of the sun, having the seal of the living God, and he called with a loud voice to the four angels who had been given power to damage earth and sea, 3 saying, “Do not damage the earth or the sea or the trees, until we have marked the servants of our God with a seal on their foreheads.”

4 And I heard the number of those who were sealed, one hundred forty-four thousand, sealed out of every tribe of the people of Israel:

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.
And I heard the number of those who were sealed, one hundred forty-four thousand, sealed out of every tribe of the people of Israel.

Verse of the Day FRIDAY, May 10, 2019

Matthew 18:15 (NIV)[ Dealing With Sin in the Church ] “If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over.

Read all of Matthew 18

Listen to Matthew 18

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 - Friday, May 10, 2019

La misericordia

Por la misericordia de Jehová no hemos sido consumidos, porque nunca decayeron sus misericordias. Nuevas son cada mañana; grande es tu fidelidad.

Todos somos pecadores y nacimos con esa ley del pecado. Sin embargo, el acto más hermoso de Dios para limpiar nuestra naturaleza pecaminosa, y sin merecérnosla, fue cuando nos dio a su único Hijo para que muriera por ti y por mí, y darnos de esa manera el perdón de los pecados y una vida nueva.

Dios perdona nuestros pecados y, como dice su Palabra, los echa al fondo del mar y nunca se vuelve acordar de ellos.

No obstante, como el pecado es algo que está en nuestro ser, muchas veces va a querer salir la vieja naturaleza y le vamos a fallar a nuestro Dios. Es decir, vamos a pecar. Aun así, esto no se debe convertir en un juego, como si dijéramos: «Ah, bueno, yo peco, pero le pido perdón a Dios y Él lo olvida».

Con todo, si el arrepentimiento es de corazón, y así le fallemos cada día, su misericordia es la que nos permite continuar a pesar de los errores cometidos.

Recuerda que las misericordias de Dios son nuevas cada mañana.

Un Día a la Vez Copyright © by Claudia Pinzón
Todos somos pecadores y nacimos con esa ley del pecado. Sin embargo, el acto más hermoso de Dios para limpiar nuestra naturaleza pecaminosa, y sin merecérnosla, fue cuando nos dio a su único Hijo para que muriera por ti y por mí, y darnos de esa manera el perdón de los pecados y una vida nueva.

Standing Strong Through the Storm - Friday, May 10, 2019

As they were walking along the road, a man said to him, “I will follow you wherever you go.” Jesus replied, “Foxes have dens and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head.” He said to another man, “Follow me.” But he replied, “Lord, first let me go and bury my father.” Jesus said to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and proclaim the kingdom of God.”
~ Luke 9:57-60 (NIV)

One of the costs of following Jesus is the impact on our children. If we, as parents, try to shelter our children from the cross then we are guilty of the third temptation of Christ. Our children need to understand that there will not be a victorious life in Christ without following the footsteps to the cross. Not around the cross, as we often desire, but through the cross.

A co-worker once asked a Christian in Vietnam how he introduces the gospel in the villages where people have never heard about God. Without hesitating he answered “Oh very easily. I simply say, ‘I have good news for you but it might cost you your life, would you like me to continue? People want to hear good news and most of the time they eagerly ask me to tell them. But the introduction is always that there will be a cost involved because for us in Vietnam, being a Christian means a life of self-denial. When they are persecuted and imprisoned they are not surprised. They expect it.”

The co-worker went on to say, “It sometimes amazes me how we find it suitable to counsel our children regarding the costs involved in buying a new bicycle or starting a new hobby but we never sit down and discuss the cost of following Jesus. We need to train our children in no uncertain terms that being ridiculed at school, being rejected and facing mockery, is part and parcel of being a Christian. It comes in as a package and you cannot have the one without the other. We need to train our children to sacrifice; we need to train our children to count the cost; we need to train our children that they do not belong to themselves.

“Our lives are often based on our expectations. If we are confronted with the unexpected, we seldom know how to react. If we neglect to teach and expose our children to the reality of the cross, difficulties will come as a surprise.

“But, once again, if we as parents cannot testify through our lives by being examples of living sacrifices, our teachings will be futile. When was the last time you were ridiculed for the name of Jesus? When was the last time you sacrificed your time and money to work among the lost? When was the last time you sacrificed anything to visit the persecuted church?”

RESPONSE: Today I will be an example to my children and teach them the cost in following Jesus.

PRAYER: Lord, help me to be willing to sacrifice everything to follow You and to be an example.

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 - Friday, May 10, 2019


His name means: "Yahweh Has Given"

His work: The firstborn son of King Saul, Jonathan was a capable warrior and military strategist.
His character: Jonathan demonstrated remarkable capabilities for friendship, selflessness, and loyalty.
His sorrow: Although the rightful heir to the throne of Israel, Jonathan never became king. He also had to deal with the mental and emotional pathology of his father, King Saul.
Key Scriptures: 1 Samuel 14; 19; 20

A Look at the Man

By his own foolishness, Saul put his children in impossible situations.

His youngest daughter, Michal, was married to David, a man Saul openly hated. And his son, Jonathan, was David's closest friend.

Because of her father's unrestrained jealousy, Michal was forced to lower David from an open window to protect him from Saul. And Saul's irrational rage against David forced Jonathan to take sides against his father, the king of Israel.

As their friendship unfolded, we can assume that David confided in Jonathan about his anointing to be the next king of Israel. He would have told Jonathan about the prophet Samuel's visit to his father's home in search of Saul's replacement. Imagine the two-pronged disappointment that would have devastated a smaller man than Jonathan. First, he would have been greatly displeased with the news of the Lord's message to Samuel about his father. "I have rejected Saul as king over Israel." Second, it would mean that he, the oldest son of the king, was not going to be the successor to the throne.

There is no record of Jonathan being devastated with this news. Because he trusted God, he knew that Samuel never would have anointed David as the heir to his father's throne if he hadn't been divinely appointed.

The account of Jonathan is the story of loyalty at many levels. First, he was loyal to his father. At no point did Jonathan complain to David that his father was a deranged madman. In the midst of terrible conflict, Jonathan was steadfast in his respect for his father, even dying with him in battle.

Second, Jonathan was loyal to David. He had legitimate reasons to envy the successor to his father's throne, but he loved him instead. Like David, he was a capable leader and victorious warrior. But he refused to set himself against David, even though his father did everything he could to push him in that direction.

Finally, Jonathan was loyal to the living God. Even though he could have complained that his father's actions spoiled his own future, he trusted God's sovereignty. Whether through verbal confrontations with his father or delivering bad news to his friend, Jonathan was a man of impeccable integrity.

Some people imagine David's friend Jonathan as a milquetoast wimp looking to find esteem through his friendship with a man much greater than he. Nothing could be further from the truth. Jonathan was a strong man, a mighty soldier, and a successful leader. And it is from this position of influence that Jonathan introduces us to the greater power of loyalty.

Reflect On: 1 Samuel 20:11–17
Praise God: For blessing our loved ones through us.
Offer Thanks: For God’s faithfulness from generation to generation.
Confess: Any failure to believe that God intends to use you to extend his blessings to the next generation.
Ask God: To make you the kind of person whose righteousness blesses others.

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.
Some people imagine David's friend Jonathan as a milquetoast wimp looking to find esteem through his friendship with a man much greater than he.

Girlfriends in God - Friday, May 10, 2019

Generosity is a Privilege

Today’s Truth

He who has a generous eye will be blessed, for he gives of his bread to the poor.
~ Proverbs 22:9 (NKJV)

Friend to Friend

It was a generous act that got my attention.

After I was done speaking at a conference, a teenage boy asked to speak with me at my book table.  “I know this may be strange,” he said.  “But I’d like to buy books for the next ten people at your table.”

He handed me $100.  I couldn’t believe that someone wanted to be so generous, and I couldn’t believe it was a 17-year-old boy!  The host church wasn’t in an affluent part of town and I later learned that boy did not come from a rich family.

I praised his generosity and motioned for him to stay close, so he could overhear my next conversation.  A kind looking woman in her fifties handed me a small stack of books to purchase.  I had the privilege of saying, “An anonymous donor has already bought those books for you.  Today, they are free!”

You should have seen the smile on her face and tears in her eyes.  It was almost as touching as the look on that young man’s face as he saw the joy generated by his sacrificial act.

He, the generous giver, was blessed!  Today’s truth says that “He who has generous eye will be blessed, for he gives of his bread to the poor.”  How does one have a generous eye?  I believe it’s about looking around to notice the needs of others and to respond.  The opposite would be a selfish, me-centered eye.  Now that kind of eye is the one we’re born with and the kind social media breeds.  We need to cultivate a generous eye by the power of the Holy Spirit.

There was a saying posted at the host church, “Generosity is a privilege.” 

It’s not a duty, burden, problem, or something to be avoided at all costs.  It’s a privilege to give money in an offering, pay for someone’s meal, serve children by volunteering, or buy books for someone else.  The Bible tells us what our attitude should be when giving in 2 Corinthians 9:7, “Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.”

When you give generously to others, you are partnering with God in the profound work of ministry.  You are putting a spotlight on the abundant good works of God in our lives.  You may be generous with your money, and you can also be generous in these areas: 

Your time.  Spend unhurried time with your family members and best friends.  Be generous with your minutes with people and miserly with your screen time.  Take time out to volunteer for service projects, drive the van, or sit with a hurting friend.

Your talents.  Maybe you have the heart of a coach or teacher.  You can volunteer to tutor kids or coach basketball.  Do you sing or play an instrument?  Get involved in your church, join a band, or minister at your local nursing home.  Are you great with numbers?  You might offer to help out a non-profit with their accounting.

Your words.  Be lavish in your praise and encouraging words.  In Acts 20:2 (NIV) it says that Paul “traveled through that area, speaking many words of encouragement to the people, and finally arrived in Greece.”

Let’s be known for our generous acts and our generous eyes.  Generosity truly is a privilege and a blessing to everyone involved.

Let’s Pray

Dear Jesus, thank You for Your ultimate generosity in loving me.  Change my heart from a selfish heart to a giving heart.  May I speak words of encouragement to the people around me.  Help me to give cheerfully of my money, time, and talents.
In Jesus’ Name,

Now It’s Your Turn

Do you usually give money grudgingly or cheerfully?

Think about your schedule this week. What is one generous thing you can do for someone?

More from the Girlfriends

How can you encourage children to be generous? Arlene’s book Growing Up Social: Raising Relational Kids in a Screen-Driven World (co-authored with Dr. Gary Chapman) will show you how to teach children gratitude and generosity. It’s the opposite of today’s entitlement spirit.

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

Girlfriends in God
It was a generous act that got my attention.

LHM Daily Devotions - Go and Bear Fruit

"Go and Bear Fruit"

May 10, 2019

(Jesus said) "You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in My Name, He may give it to you."
~ John 15:16 (ESV)

From Genesis to Revelation, we find parables, analogies, and examples about agriculture. Fruit seems to be a very common, a very fitting analogy. Jesus, speaking to His followers in the verse above, said that He chose them to go and bear fruit-and that fruit will last.

Far better than apples and oranges, Jesus is speaking of the things St. Paul later lists in his letter to the Galatians. "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control" (Galatians 5:22-23a).

We may try very hard to express love and joy, so we can let it show and so that others know we're "good Christians." But is that what God intends? Paul says it's the fruit of the Spirit. It's God in us, letting His attributes flow through us (see also 2 Timothy 1:7). It's God's fruit. We're only the vessels. Our job is to rest in the Lord, to let His fruit flow through us, and to watch out for sin that will get in the way.

And don't forget the pruning. As any gardener knows, it often takes a lot of trimming back for the tree to be abundant and bear the best fruit. God, in His love will be pruning us, trimming us, so more of His fruit can grow through us. The pruning may at times be painful; it may be incomprehensible to us, but it will happen, and it is for the good of God's plan (see John 15:2).

So, why should we bear fruit? Is the fruit for the tree? No. The fruit is for others. The fruit we bear is for their comfort, encouragement, edification, and benefit. It's for others. It is part of our identity as Christians. "They will know that we are Christians by our love," as Jesus indicated in John 13.

The seeds for growing new trees are found within the fruit. It is the fruit, along with God's Word and Spirit, that will be the means for new trees to grow, for people to come to faith. "The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life, and whoever captures souls is wise" (Proverbs 11:30). God has chosen us to share His Word. He uses us as a means for new trees to spring up.

Jesus said, "The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest" (Matthew 9:37b). Are you letting His fruit grow in you and express itself through you? He wants to use you in a special way. Remember, it is Jesus who said, "I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit."

THE PRAYER: Heavenly Father, in Your strength, grant that we may always bear fruit for You. May Your love and joy grow in us and overflow to others. In Jesus' Name. Amen.

From The Lutheran Layman, January 1980 issue, "Go and Bear Fruit," by Matt Welser. Use these devotions in your newsletter and bulletin! Used by permission; all rights reserved by the Int'l LLL (LHM).
From Genesis to Revelation, we find parables, analogies, and examples about agriculture.

Devocional de la CPTLN del 10 de Mayo de 2019 - Simplemente perfectos


Simplemente perfectos

10 de Mayo de 2019

Nosotros anunciamos a Cristo, y amonestamos y enseñamos a todo el mundo en toda sabiduría, a fin de presentar perfecta en Cristo Jesús a toda la humanidad.

Fue alrededor del Día de la Madre. Un niño entró en la sección de lencería de una gran tienda y tímidamente, en voz baja, le confió su problema a una vendedora: "Quiero comprarle un regalo a mi mamá; le quiero comprar una combinación, pero no sé cuál es su talla".

La vendedora le preguntó: "¿Cómo es tu mamá? ¿Es alta o baja, es gorda o delgada?"

"No lo sé. Para mí ella es simplemente perfecta", le contestó el niño.

Así es que la vendedora le envolvió una combinación en lo que la mayoría de las personas considera un tamaño perfecto: 34.

Me complace informar que dos días después, la misma vendedora conoció a la madre perfecta que llegó a la tienda y cambió la combinación por una talla 48.

Todo esto sirve para demostrar que el viejo adagio encierra una verdad: "La belleza está en los ojos del espectador".

Grande o pequeña, el tamaño de su madre no hacía absolutamente ninguna diferencia para ese niño. Ella era "simplemente perfecta".

Sorprendentemente, esa es la forma en que el Señor ve a su hijos: simplemente perfectos. Es cierto que tenemos nuestros pecados y defectos. Pero gracias al perdón ganado para nosotros a través del sacrificio de Jesús, podemos presentarnos ante el Señor limpios de cada mancha.

Como diría Lutero: somos salvos "sin ningún mérito o valor en nosotros...", lo que significa que somos libres para "agradecer y alabar, servir y obedecer a Dios".

Esto lo debemos hacer hoy y todos los días. Después de todo, este día también es un regalo de Dios.

ORACIÓN: Padre celestial, gracias a la salvación que nos has dado a través de tu Hijo somos revestidos con el manto blanco de tu perdón y salvación. Enséñanos a darte gracias en todo lo que hacemos. En el nombre de Jesús. Amén.

De una devoción escrita para "By the Way".

© Copyright 2019 Cristo Para Todas Las Naciones. Que a través de estos devocionales, la Palabra de Dios te refresque en tu diario caminar.
La belleza está en los ojos del espectador.

Lời Sống Hằng Ngày - Bộ Trưởng Bộ Cô Đơn

Bộ Trưởng Bộ Cô Đơn

Đọc: Hê-bơ-rơ 13:1-8 | Đọc Kinh Thánh suốt năm: II Các vua 10-12; Giăng 1:29-51

Hãy luôn giữ tình huynh đệ. Hê-bơ-rơ 13:1

Sau khi chồng của Betsy qua đời, cô dành hầu hết thời gian ở nhà, xem ti-vi và pha trà uống. Nhưng cô ấy không phải là người duy nhất đang ở trong sự cô đơn. Hơn chín triệu người dân nước Anh (15% dân số) nói rằng họ thường cảm thấy cô đơn, và nước Anh đã bổ nhiệm bộ trưởng bộ cô đơn để tìm ra lý do và cách giúp đỡ.

Đây là vài nguyên nhân của sự cô đơn được biết đến: Chúng ta thay đổi chỗ ở liên tục nên không có mối liên hệ lâu dài. Chúng ta tin rằng mình có thể chăm sóc cho bản thân, và không có lý do gì để tiếp cận ai khác. Chúng ta bị chia cắt bởi công nghệ – mỗi người đắm chìm trong chiếc màn hình riêng.

Tôi cảm nhận được khía cạnh đen tối của sự cô đơn, và có lẽ bạn cũng cảm nhận được. Đây là một lý do mà chúng ta cần đến những anh em tín hữu. Thư Hê-bơ-rơ đúc kết phần bàn luận sâu sắc về sự hy sinh của Chúa Jêsus bằng cách khích lệ chúng ta luôn nhóm lại với nhau (10:25). Chúng ta thuộc về gia đình của Đức Chúa Trời nên phải “giữ tình huynh đệ” và “tỏ lòng hiếu khách” (13:1-2). Nếu mỗi người trong chúng ta đều nỗ lực, thì mọi người đều cảm thấy mình được quan tâm.

Có thể những người cô đơn không đáp lại lòng tử tế của chúng ta, nhưng không có lý do gì để từ bỏ. Chúa Jêsus đã hứa sẽ không bao giờ lìa bỏ chúng ta (13:5), và chúng ta hãy để tình bạn của Ngài nung đúc cho tình yêu của chúng ta đối với người khác. Bạn có cảm thấy cô đơn không? Đâu là những cách để bạn phục vụ gia đình đức tin? Những bằng hữu mà bạn có trong Chúa Jêsus sẽ còn lại mãi mãi, suốt đời này và cả đời sau.
Ai đang cần đến tình bạn của bạn? Tuần này, đâu là cách mà bạn sẽ phục vụ ai đó trong hội thánh hay hàng xóm của mình?
Gắn bó với gia đình đức tin là cách để không cô đơn.

© 2019 Lời Sống Hằng Ngày
Sau khi chồng của Betsy qua đời, cô dành hầu hết thời gian ở nhà, xem ti-vi và pha trà uống. Nhưng cô ấy không phải là người duy nhất đang ở trong sự cô đơn.