Friday, September 20, 2019

The Daily Lectionary for FRIDAY, September 20, 2019

The Daily Lectionary
FRIDAY, September 20, 2019
(Revised Common Lectionary Year C)
(Semi-continuous Reading Plan)

Psalm 79:1-9
Plea for Mercy for Jerusalem
A Psalm of Asaph.
1  O God, the nations have come into your inheritance;
     they have defiled your holy temple;
     they have laid Jerusalem in ruins.
2  They have given the bodies of your servants
     to the birds of the air for food,
     the flesh of your faithful to the wild animals of
   the earth.
3  They have poured out their blood like water
     all around Jerusalem,
     and there was no one to bury them.
4  We have become a taunt to our neighbors,
     mocked and derided by those around us.

5  How long, O Lord? Will you be angry forever?
     Will your jealous wrath burn like fire?
6  Pour out your anger on the nations
     that do not know you,
   and on the kingdoms
     that do not call on your name.
7  For they have devoured Jacob
     and laid waste his habitation.

8  Do not remember against us the iniquities of our
     let your compassion come speedily to meet us,
     for we are brought very low.
9  Help us, O God of our salvation,
     for the glory of your name;
   deliver us, and forgive our sins,
     for your name’s sake.

Jeremiah 8:1-13
8:1 At that time, says the Lord, the bones of the kings of Judah, the bones of its officials, the bones of the priests, the bones of the prophets, and the bones of the inhabitants of Jerusalem shall be brought out of their tombs; 2 and they shall be spread before the sun and the moon and all the host of heaven, which they have loved and served, which they have followed, and which they have inquired of and worshiped; and they shall not be gathered or buried; they shall be like dung on the surface of the ground. 3 Death shall be preferred to life by all the remnant that remains of this evil family in all the places where I have driven them, says the Lord of hosts.

The Blind Perversity of the Whole Nation
4  You shall say to them, Thus says the Lord:
   When people fall, do they not get up again?
     If they go astray, do they not turn back?
5  Why then has this people turned away
     in perpetual backsliding?
   They have held fast to deceit,
     they have refused to return.
6  I have given heed and listened,
     but they do not speak honestly;
   no one repents of wickedness,
     saying, “What have I done!”
   All of them turn to their own course,
     like a horse plunging headlong into battle.
7  Even the stork in the heavens
     knows its times;
   and the turtledove, swallow, and crane
     observe the time of their coming;
   but my people do not know
     the ordinance of the Lord.

8  How can you say, “We are wise,
     and the law of the Lord is with us,”
   when, in fact, the false pen of the scribes
     has made it into a lie?
9  The wise shall be put to shame,
     they shall be dismayed and taken;
   since they have rejected the word of the Lord,
     what wisdom is in them?
10 Therefore I will give their wives to others
     and their fields to conquerors,
   because from the least to the greatest
     everyone is greedy for unjust gain;
   from prophet to priest
     everyone deals falsely.
11 They have treated the wound of my people carelessly,
     saying, “Peace, peace,”
     when there is no peace.
12 They acted shamefully, they committed abomination;
     yet they were not at all ashamed,
     they did not know how to blush.
   Therefore they shall fall among those who fall;
     at the time when I punish them, they shall be
       says the Lord.
13 When I wanted to gather them, says the Lord,
     there are no grapes on the vine,
     nor figs on the fig tree;
   even the leaves are withered,
     and what I gave them has passed away from them.

Romans 8:31-39
God’s Love in Christ Jesus
8:31 What then are we to say about these things? If God is for us, who is against us? 32 He who did not withhold his own Son, but gave him up for all of us, will he not with him also give us everything else? 33 Who will bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. 34 Who is to condemn? It is Christ Jesus, who died, yes, who was raised, who is at the right hand of God, who indeed intercedes for us. 35 Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will hardship, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 36 As it is written,

   “For your sake we are being killed all day long;
     we are accounted as sheep to be slaughtered.”

37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, 39 nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

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.
The Spirit of God makes the love of God real to us. The Father is for us, the Son is for us, and the Spirit is for us. Nothing can separate us from His love. Is there any reason why we should not be “more than conquerors”?

The Daily Prayer for FRIDAY, September 20, 2019

The Daily Prayer
for FRIDAY, September 20, 2019

Paul Chong Hasang (1794-1839) and the Korean Martyrs

Paul Chong Hasang was the son of Augustine Chong Yakjong, one of Korea’s first converts to Christianity. Yakjong was martyred with Paul’s older brother, but Yakjong’s wife and their remaining children, including seven-year-old Paul, were spared. Paul became a government interpreter, which allowed him to travel and eventually meet a bishop in Beijing whom he entreated to send priests as missionaries to Korea. Years later, Paul learned Latin and theology, and he was about to be ordained when persecution broke out in 1839. Refusing to renounce his faith, Paul was bound to a cross on a cart. We remember him on this day, along with Andrew Kim Tae-gon, the first Korean-born Catholic priest, and 103 other Korean Christians who were martyred.

When a judge told Paul Chong Hasang that the king had forbidden Christianity and that it was his duty as a loyal subject to renounce the faith, Paul replied, “I have told you that I am a Christian, and will be one until my death.”

Thank you, Lord, for the witness of those who have counted their relationship with you more important than their very lives. Draw us to you in constant prayer, that we might grow in the intimacy that makes your passion ours. Amen.

Verse of the Day for FRIDAY, September 20, 2019

Joel 2:23 (NIV) Be glad, people of Zion, rejoice in the Lord your God, for he has given you the autumn rains because he is faithful. He sends you abundant showers, both autumn and spring rains, as before.

Read all of Joel 2

Listen to Joel 2

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 - Viernes 20 de Septiembre de 2019

Oración por nuestra defensa

Yo le digo al Señor: «Tú eres mi refugio, mi fortaleza, el Dios en quien confío».
~ Salmo 91:2 (NVI)

Señor, ¡qué cosas tan hermosas nos has dejado en tu Palabra! Cuando leo el Salmo 91, comprendo, mi Dios, que si soy obediente a tu Palabra, mi vida estará siempre bajo tus alas. Con tus cuidados y protección. Que no debo temer a nada ni nadie porque eres mi Defensor.

En tu Palabra prometiste no abandonarme y estar conmigo en todo momento.

Ayúdame, Señor, a darte todo mi amor y a confiar plenamente en tu poder.

Dios mío, no temeré y descansaré en ti.

Por más noticias preocupantes que se escuchen afuera, yo creeré en ti.

Amén y amén.

Un Día a la Vez Copyright © by Claudia Pinzón
Oración por nuestra defensa

Standing Strong Through the Storm - Friday, September 20, 2019

But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us.

Our Open Doors colleague, Ron Boyd-MacMillan, shares the following insight from his teaching, “Why I Need to Encounter the Persecuted Church.”

While living in Hong Kong, I used to make a point of having dinner with many of the Open Doors supporters worldwide that gave up some holiday time to courier Bibles into China. Often in the course of their travels some of them would meet famous house church leaders and say, “To be truthful, I was a bit disappointed in meeting.” They would add something like, “I thought these people would be remarkable saints, and of course they were, but they were also quite prejudiced, or rude, or had some other feature that I did not think worthy of a very spiritual leader.” They assumed that the persecuted were “super-saints.” But they are not.

It is a very unfortunate trend to idolize the persecuted. We assume that if a Christian survives twenty years in a stinking prison cell they are in a completely different spiritual category from ourselves. They are of course different in what they have experienced, but that does not necessarily make them more spiritual. As J.C. Ryle once put it, “Even the best of men are only men at the best.” They often retain the blind spots and prejudices of their culture.

On one occasion I was taking a distinguished Bible teacher to meet a revival leader in Lanzhou, Gansu province. This Chinese leader had seen over 50,000 people come to know the Lord through his ministry over a ten-year period, but to our amazement he taught that “you can only come to faith on a Sunday.” He had been taught Christianity by his beloved grandmother, who believed the Lord would only listen to pleas for repentance on a Sunday. We talked and argued about this, and eventually he threw us out shouting, “You just hate my Granny.” I hear now, years later, that he has extended the “repentance period” to Saturday as well. Yet he is still an extremely effective evangelist despite this chronic, man-made obstacle he has erected to the grace of God!

Surely the great point is this: flawed as some Chinese leaders were, they did the will of God mightily. They labored in a country that has seen the number of Christians grow from less than one million in 1949 to over eighty millions today—the largest revival in the history of Christendom. God didn’t stop pouring out his Spirit because his saints were imperfect.

If the persecuted teach us anything, it is that God will work through us even despite our prejudices, blind spots and eccentricities. If we offer ourselves, we will be used…as we are.

We do not have to be perfect to do God’s will. Otherwise, no one could.

RESPONSE: Today I will walk in faith thankful that I do not have to be perfect to do God’s will.

PRAYER: Thank You, Lord, that You can still use me with all my imperfections and blind spots.

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, September 20, 2019

John the Baptist

His name may mean: "Yahweh Has Been Gracious"

His work: He was the forerunner of Jesus, called to live in the spirit and power of Elijah. John prepared the way by preaching the need for repentance.
His character: John was completely focused on his assignment, unaffected by anything other than his message. And he wasn't willing to take on this duty without plenty of preparation.
His sorrow: A prophet's greatest joy is in preaching. But John spent the final days of his life in prison, unable to do what God had called and gifted him to do.
His triumph: God chose John to baptize his Son. No greater honor has ever been given a man.
Key Scriptures: Luke 1:5-25; 3:1-20

A Look at the Man

People in Israel were expecting the Messiah. The prophet Malachi had spoken of a redeemer, saying, "See, I will send you the prophet Elijah before that great and dreadful day of the LORD comes" this long-awaited day of the Lord had melted into years, decades, centuries. Generations had come and gone, and still there was silence. God's voice was not heard.

But then came John with the clear-cut assignment pronounced centuries earlier by the prophet Isaiah: "A voice of one calling in the desert, ‘Prepare the way for the Lord; make straight paths for him.'" John's voice was so strong and so persistent that it was heard even in the king's palace. When Herod learned that John had pronounced judgment on his illegal and immoral marriage to his brother's wife, he threw the prophet in prison.

While imprisoned, John felt the need of reassurance about the one whose way he was preparing. Had he, like so many others, secretly hoped the Messiah would be like other great kings, using military force to overthrow his adversaries? But Jesus had assembled no armies. Perhaps, he may have thought, Jesus would use political force. But civil reform would never prove to be part of Jesus' agenda.

When John's emissaries questioned Jesus, they found him at work, curing diseases, giving sight to the blind, delivering those who were possessed by evil spirits. Jesus merely replied to their questions with the command: "Go back and report to John what you have seen and heard."

Imagine how John must have been pleased with this message. This is not what I expected in the Messiah, he may have thought. But Jesus must be from God. No one could do these things unless he was the one we have waited for.

A short time later, John was beheaded by Herod. By his life and by his death he prepared the way of the Lord, whose kingdom was not of this earth. Jesus said of John: "I tell you the truth. Among those born of a woman there has not risen anyone greater than John."

John said of Jesus, "One more powerful than I will come, the thongs of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie.... He must become greater; I must become less." A perfect summary of what it means to prepare the way of the Lord.

Reflect On: Luke 3:7–14
Praise God: For his faithfulness.
Offer Thanks: For God’s plan of salvation, for the obedience of John the Baptist, and for sending his Son.
Confess: Your fear of boldness in speaking the truth and in telling of your love for God and your faith in him.
Ask God: For opportunities to tell others of his mercy and for courage to speak.

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.
John was completely focused on his assignment, unaffected by anything other than his message. And he wasn't willing to take on this duty without plenty of preparation.

LHM Daily Devotions - September 20, 2019 - Through Our Lives

"Through Our Lives"

Sep. 20, 2019

(Jesus said) "By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit and so prove to be My disciples."
~ John 15:8 (ESV)

A healthy, thriving plant is a plant that reproduces and bears fruit. Its roots take hold, reaching deep into the soil, nourishing its structure from bottom to top.

Likewise, Jesus' disciples are people—God's branches—who bear fruit. As Christians our lives have been redeemed for service and praise so that we can bless the lives of others and magnify God by how we live. This, unfortunately, is not always the case. We may hear the call to help—the call to get involved in the fruit-bearing process—but then, for whatever reason, not respond to that call. In the end, it's easy to take God's provision for granted.

But God empowers us through His Word and His Spirit at work in our lives. He nourishes the tree; He provides everything we need to carry His message of grace forward into the lives of others. It is Him alone who makes this possible. Though 10,000 witnesses had seen the risen Christ, we would remain as doubting Thomas if the Holy Spirit had not convinced us of this truth. It was God's grace, which allowed these many witnesses to see the risen Lord firsthand. That same grace allows us to see Him through the eyes of faith.

But what about those people who do not know Jesus? How do we respond to them?

In Lutheran Hour Ministries' global outreach, the Good News of Jesus reaches millions yearly through the Word spoken to them and through the hands-on efforts of dedicated Christians in the United States and around the world. God blesses His branches, His people, throughout the world, that they may bear fruit and so glorify the Father above. And the same grace that allows us to see Him through the eyes of faith, will also be at work in the lives of others for them to see.

The ascended Lord Jesus continues to bless His church on earth with ambassadors of His life-giving Gospel. He calls pastors and teachers and lay people everywhere, and He supplies them with the wisdom and resources they need to proclaim God's Word faithfully.

We have been set aside for a special purpose—one given to us by God and meant to a beacon to those around us. The Word of God tells us, "You are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for His own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light" (1 Peter 2:9).

There is fruit to be born in our lives, and God is ready to make that happen. He sent His Son to die for us and for our sins. He brought us to faith in Him. Of all the people in the world, we are privileged to share His Good News with others.

THE PRAYER: Heavenly Father, move us through Your Holy Spirit so others may witness Your love through our lives. Amen.

Reflection Questions:
  • What are some of the ways God nourishes His branches—His people?
  • How is God glorified by fruit production in our lives?
  • Do you feel like God can use you to bear fruit for Him?

This Daily Devotion was written by a contributing writer for Lutheran Hour Ministries. Use these devotions in your newsletter and bulletin! Used by permission; all rights reserved by the Int'l LLL (LHM).
What are some of the ways God nourishes His branches—His people?

Devocional del CPTLN del 20 de Septiembre de 2019 - A través de nuestra vida


A través de nuestra vida

20 de Septiembre de 2019

(Jesús dijo) "En esto es glorificado mi Padre: en que lleven mucho fruto, y sean así mis discípulos".
~ Juan 15:8 (RVC)

Una planta sana y fructífera es una planta que se reproduce y da fruto. Sus raíces se aferran al suelo, profundamente, nutriendo así su estructura de abajo hacia arriba.

Del mismo modo, los discípulos de Jesús somos personas que nos convertimos en las ramas de Dios, ramas que dan fruto. Como cristianos, nuestras vidas han sido redimidas para el servicio y la adoración a Dios, para que podamos bendecir las vidas de otras personas y darle así gloria a Dios con nuestra manera de vivir. Desafortunadamente, no siempre es así. Es posible que escuchemos cuando se nos llama a ayudar, a involucrarnos en el proceso de fructificación, pero, por cualquier excusa, no respondemos a ese llamado. Al final, muy fácilmente damos por sentada la provisión de Dios.

Pero Dios nos empodera a través de Su Palabra y del trabajo de Su Espíritu en nuestras vidas. Él nutre nuestro árbol; Él nos proporciona todo lo que necesitamos para llevar su mensaje de gracia a los demás. Sólo Dios hace esto posible. Aunque 10,000 testigos vieron al Cristo resucitado, nosotros seguiríamos dudando como Tomás si el Espíritu Santo no nos hubiera convencido de la verdad. Fue la gracia de Dios la que permitió a estos muchos testigos ver al Señor resucitado en primera fila. Esa misma gracia nos permite verlo a través de los ojos de la fe.

¿Pero qué hay de aquellas personas que no conocen a Jesús? ¿Cómo les respondemos a ellos?

En el alcance global de los Ministerios de La Hora Luterana, las Buenas Nuevas de Jesús alcanzan a millones de personas cada año a través de la Palabra predicada y los esfuerzos prácticos de cristianos dedicados en los Estados Unidos y en todo el mundo. Dios bendice sus ramas, su pueblo, en todo el mundo, para que den fruto y glorifiquen a Dios Padre. Y la misma gracia que nos permite ver a Dios a través de los ojos de la fe, estará trabajando en la vida de los demás para que lo vean también.

El ascendido Señor Jesús continúa bendiciendo a Su iglesia en la tierra con embajadores de Su Evangelio que da vida. Él llama a pastores, maestros y laicos en todas partes, y les proporciona la sabiduría y los recursos que necesitan para proclamar la Palabra de Dios fielmente.

Hemos sido apartados para un propósito especial, uno dado por Dios y destinado a ser un faro de luz para quienes nos rodean. La Palabra de Dios nos dice: "Pero ustedes son linaje escogido, real sacerdocio, nación santa, pueblo adquirido por Dios, para que anuncien los hechos maravillosos de aquel que los llamó de las tinieblas a su luz admirable" (1 Pedro 2:9).

Hay frutos listos para germinar en nuestras vidas, y Dios espera que eso suceda. Él envió a su Hijo a morir por nosotros y por nuestros pecados. Nos trajo a la fe en él. De todas las personas en el mundo, nosotros tenemos el privilegio de compartir Sus Buenas Nuevas con los demás.

ORACIÓN: Padre celestial, muévenos a través de tu Espíritu Santo para que otros puedan presenciar tu amor a través de nuestras vidas. En Jesús. Amén

Esta devoción diaria fue escrita por un escritor contribuyente para Lutheran Hour Ministries.

Para reflexionar:
  • ¿En qué formas nutre Dios a sus ramas: a su pueblo?
  • ¿De qué forma glorificas a Dios produciendo frutos en tu vida?

© Copyright 2019 Cristo Para Todas Las Naciones. Que a través de estos devocionales, la Palabra de Dios te refresque en tu diario caminar.
¿En qué formas nutre Dios a sus ramas: a su pueblo?

Lời Sống Hằng Ngày - Ở Trong Cây Nho

Ở Trong Cây Nho

Đọc: Giăng 15:1–8 | Đọc Kinh Thánh suốt năm: Truyền Đạo 4–6; II Cô-rinh-tô 12

Như cành nho, nếu không ở trong cây nho thì tự nó không thể ra quả được. Nếu các con không cứ ở trong Ta thì cũng như vậy. Giăng 15:4

Mùa xuân đến sau một mùa đông vô cùng ảm đạm Emma giúp đỡ người thân trong suốt thời gian dài bị bệnh, cô thấy được khích lệ mỗi khi đi ngang qua cây anh đào gần nhà ở Cambridge, nước Anh. Nở rộ trên đỉnh những bông hoa màu hồng là những đóa hoa màu trắng. Người làm vườn thông minh đã ghép một nhánh hoa trắng vào cây anh đào. Khi đi ngang qua cây hoa đặc biệt này, Emma nghĩ đến lời của Chúa Jêsus nói rằng Ngài là cây nho và những người theo Ngài là cành nho (Gi. 15:1-8).

Bằng cách dùng hình ảnh cây nho để chỉ về Ngài, Chúa Jêsus đang nói đến một hình ảnh quen thuộc với dân Y-sơ-ra-ên trong thời Cựu Ước, vì ở đó cây nho tượng trưng cho dân Ngài (Thi. 80:8-9; Ôs. 10:1). Chúa Jêsus đã mở rộng biểu tượng này để chỉ về chính Ngài khi phán rằng Ngài là cây nho, còn những người theo Ngài như những cành nho được ghép vào. Và khi ở trong Ngài, họ sẽ được nuôi dưỡng và mạnh mẽ để kết quả (Gi. 15:5).

Khi giúp đỡ người thân trong gia đình, Emma cần được nhắc nhở rằng cô đã được kết nối với Chúa Jêsus. Việc nhìn thấy những bông hoa trắng giữa những bông hoa màu hồng là sự nhắc nhở về lẽ thật rằng nếu cô cứ ở trong cây nho, cô sẽ luôn nhận được sự nuôi dưỡng từ Ngài.

Khi chúng ta tin nhận Chúa Jêsus và luôn gần gũi Ngài như cành nho gắn vào cây nho, thì đức tin của chúng ta được tăng trưởng mạnh mẽ.
Điều gì xuất hiện trong tâm trí bạn khi suy nghĩ về cách cành cây được nuôi dưỡng thông qua hệ thống rễ và nhánh? Bạn được khích lệ thế nào khi nghĩ đến lẽ thật Chúa Jêsus là cây nho và bạn là cành?
Lạy Chúa Jêsus, cảm ơn Ngài đã giúp con cứ ở trong Ngài. Nguyện con tìm thấy sự bình an, hy vọng và sức lực con cần trong ngày hôm nay.

© 2019 Lời Sống Hằng Ngày
Khi chúng ta tin nhận Chúa Jêsus và luôn gần gũi Ngài như cành nho gắn vào cây nho, thì đức tin của chúng ta được tăng trưởng mạnh mẽ.