Thursday, September 10, 2020

The Daily Bible Readings for THURSDAY, September 10, 2020

The Daily Readings
THURSDAY, September 10, 2020
Psalm 114; Exodus 13:17-22; 1 John 3:11-16
The Holy Bible, King James Version (KJV)

Today's Verse-of-the-Day: Isaiah 46:4
And even to your old age I am he; and even to hoar hairs will I carry you: I have made, and I will bear; even I will carry, and will deliver you.

Today's Readings:
Tremble O earth
1 When Israel went out of Egypt, the house of Jacob from a people of strange language;

2 Judah was his sanctuary, and Israel his dominion.

3 The sea saw it, and fled: Jordan was driven back.

4 The mountains skipped like rams, and the little hills like lambs.

5 What ailed thee, O thou sea, that thou fleddest? thou Jordan, that thou wast driven back?

6 Ye mountains, that ye skipped like rams; and ye little hills, like lambs?

7 Tremble, thou earth, at the presence of the Lord, at the presence of the God of Jacob;

8 Which turned the rock into a standing water, the flint into a fountain of waters.

Pillar of cloud pillar of fire
13:17 And it came to pass, when Pharaoh had let the people go, that God led them not through the way of the land of the Philistines, although that was near; for God said, Lest peradventure the people repent when they see war, and they return to Egypt:

18 But God led the people about, through the way of the wilderness of the Red sea: and the children of Israel went up harnessed out of the land of Egypt.

19 And Moses took the bones of Joseph with him: for he had straitly sworn the children of Israel, saying, God will surely visit you; and ye shall carry up my bones away hence with you.

20 And they took their journey from Succoth, and encamped in Etham, in the edge of the wilderness.

21 And the Lord went before them by day in a pillar of a cloud, to lead them the way; and by night in a pillar of fire, to give them light; to go by day and night:

22 He took not away the pillar of the cloud by day, nor the pillar of fire by night, from before the people.

Love one another
3:11 For this is the message that ye heard from the beginning, that we should love one another.

12 Not as Cain, who was of that wicked one, and slew his brother. And wherefore slew he him? Because his own works were evil, and his brother's righteous.

13 Marvel not, my brethren, if the world hate you.

14 We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that loveth not his brother abideth in death.

15 Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer: and ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him.

16 Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.

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 Holy Bible, King James Version (KJV).

The Daily Bible Readings are selected from the Revised Common Lectionary Daily Readings, a three-year cyclical lectionary. We are currently in Year A. Beginning with the first Sunday of Advent in 2020, we will be in Year B. The year which ended at Advent 2019 was Year C. 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 what they heard in worship. Revised Common Lectionary Daily Readings, copyright © 2005 Consultation on Common Texts.
The Daily Readings for THURSDAY, September 10, 2020
Psalm 114; Exodus 13:17-22; 1 John 3:11-16 (KJV)

The Daily Prayer for THURSDAY, September 10, 2020

Prayer of the Day
THURSDAY, September 10, 2020

Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path.

Lord our God, we stand before your presence. Look in mercy upon us poor, weak children, who do not know where to turn unless you help us with your mighty hand. We trust in you. You will help us, you will always be with us, and even in hard times you will accomplish your will for what is good. Bless us today as we gather to hear your Word. May your Word always be our strength and joy. Your Word gives victory in us and in the whole world so that your will may be done on earth as in heaven. Amen.

Verse of the Day for THURSDAY, September 10, 2020

Isaiah 46:4
And even to your old age I am he; and even to hoar hairs will I carry you: I have made, and I will bear; even I will carry, and will deliver you.
Read all of Isaiah 46

Listen to Isaiah 46

The Holy Bible, King James Version (KJV).

Ichthus Ministries Daily Devotions — A Real Debt

A Real Debt

Then Peter came up and said to Him, "Lord, how often will my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? As many as seven times?" Jesus said to him, "I do not say to you seven times, but seventy-seven times. Therefore the kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who wished to settle accounts with his servants. When he began to settle, one was brought to him who owed him ten thousand talents. And since he could not pay, his master ordered him to be sold, with his wife and children and all that he had, and payment to be made. So the servant fell on his knees, imploring him, 'Have patience with me, and I will pay you everything.' And out of pity for him, the master of that servant released him and forgave him the debt. But when that same servant went out, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred denarii, and seizing him, he began to choke him, saying, 'Pay what you owe.' So his fellow servant fell down and pleaded with him, 'Have patience with me, and I will pay you.' He refused and went and put him in prison until he should pay the debt. When his fellow servants saw what had taken place, they were greatly distressed, and they went and reported to their master all that had taken place. Then his master summoned him and said to him, 'You wicked servant! I forgave you all that debt because you pleaded with me. And should not you have had mercy on your fellow servant, as I had mercy on you?' And in anger his master delivered him to the jailers, until he should pay all his debt. So also My Heavenly Father will do to every one of you, if you do not forgive your brother from your heart."

Over the years I've heard this parable so many times, and the one thing that usually gets emphasized is the huge difference between the size of the two debts. And the lesson we go away with is usually, "Look how much God forgives you. The sins that other people commit against you are tiny in comparison. So just forgive them, okay?"

The problem with this lesson isn't that it's wrong. It's absolutely correct. And yet, it's just not that helpful—at least to me.

Why? I think because what my neighbor did to me was so real and so hurtful to my eyes—so costly in terms of pain and trouble. I can't say, "Oh, this is nothing, I'll just let it go. It doesn't matter to me." Because it does matter.

Jesus recognizes this fact. In His parable, He mentions the amount the second servant owes—a hundred denarii. That isn't fifty cents, or a couple of dollars. It's the equivalent of four months' wages for one of those servants. In modern terms, we're talking the cost of a decent used car. And if someone treats us badly on that level, it matters—even if our own sins against God are astronomically higher.

So why bring this up? Because Jesus doesn't call us to pretend that our hurts and damage don't matter—they absolutely do. What He calls us to do is different. We need to face up to the pain and hurt that the other person's sin has cost us—to tell the truth, to admit that it does matter, not to minimize it—and then, with God's help, to forgive it anyway. That's real forgiveness—costly, difficult forgiveness.

Who can do this? Only someone who has Jesus living inside them—someone through whom Jesus Himself is acting. After all, when He forgave all our sins and debt to God, He knew exactly what it cost. It cost Him the cross. Jesus is the master of difficult forgiveness. And if we bring our hurts and grief to Him, He can work miracles of forgiveness in our own lives and relationships. It may take time and a lot of pain. But He can heal us—and show mercy to others through us.

Lord, help me when I can't seem to forgive others. Amen.

Dr. Kari Vo

Reflection Questions:
1. When did someone show mercy to you?

2. What is the difference between forgiving and ignoring or excusing?

3. Is there someone you are struggling to forgive? Ask the Lord for help.
Use these devotions in your newsletter and bulletin! Used by permission; all rights reserved by the Int'l LLL (LHM).
Over the years I've heard this parable so many times, and the one thing that usually gets emphasized is the huge difference between the size of the two debts.

Standing Strong Through the Storm — DISPENSING GRACE

And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
— 1 Corinthians 13:13

How can Christians dispense grace in a society that is or seems to be veering away from God? As we noted in earlier devotionals, Elijah hid out in caves. On the other hand, his contemporary Obadiah worked within the system running Ahab’s palace while sheltering God’s prophets on the side. Esther and Daniel were employed by heathen empires. Jesus submitted to the judgment of a Roman governor. Paul appealed his case all the way to Caesar. In his book, What’s So Amazing About Grace, Philip Yancey shares:

Dispensing God’s grace is the Christian’s main contribution

The one big thing the church has over the world is showing grace. Jesus did not let any institution interfere with His love for individuals. Here is where the fruit of the Spirit are so important in our lives. Jesus said we are to have one distinguishing mark—neither political correctness nor moral superiority, but—love.
Commitment to grace does not mean Christians will always live in perfect harmony with the government
Kenneth Kaunda, the former President of Zambia has written, “…what a nation needs more than anything else is not a Christian ruler in the palace but a Christian prophet within earshot.” Jesus warned that the world who hated him would hate us also. As the early church spread throughout the Roman Empire, the slogan “Jesus is Lord” was a direct affront to the Romans. When conflict came, brave Christians stood up against the state, appealing to a higher authority. Through the years, this same energy continued. In all of this, we are to be wise as serpents and harmless as doves. All our actions—and even counteractions—are to be seasoned with grace. When we show just the opposite, then we must consider the wisdom of our choices.
Coziness between church and state is good for the state and bad for the church
Herein lies the chief danger to grace. The state, which runs by rules of ungrace—the entire “world” does—gradually drowns out the church’s sublime message of grace.

The church works best as a force of resistance, a counterbalance to the consuming power of the state. The cozier it gets with government, the more watered-down its message becomes. Can you imagine any government enacting a set of laws based on Jesus’ “Sermon on the Mount?” A state government can shut down stores and theatres on Sunday, but it cannot compel worship. It can arrest and punish murderers, but cannot cure their hatred much less teach them love…It can give subsidies to the poor, but cannot force the rich to show them compassion and justice. It can ban adultery but not lust, theft but not covetousness, cheating but not pride. It can encourage virtue but not holiness.[1]
RESPONSE: Today I will operate in the world I encounter and in my church dispensing grace.

PRAYER: Help me, Lord, to be a person who is known for my ability to live like Jesus—with grace.

1. Philip Yancey, What’s So Amazing About Grace? (Grand Rapids: Zondervan Publishing, 1997), pp. 219-227.

Standing Strong Through The Storm (SSTS), a daily devotional message by SSTS author Paul Estabrooks. © 2011 Open Doors International. Used by permission.
How can Christians dispense grace in a society that is or seems to be veering away from God?

Men's Devotional Bible — Inward Remembrance, Outward Adoration
Inward Remembrance, Outward Adoration

2 Kings 17:7–29

Recommended Reading: Psalm 42:1–2; 84:1–12; Hebrews 12:28

Many years ago a number of skylarks imported from England began to breed and dot the American landscape. One day, a man who studied birds sat listening with solemn interest to the song of the immigrant birds. Nearby, an Irish laborer—hearing the song of the bird he’d heard in his mother country—stopped, took off his hat, and turned his face skyward. A look of awe and joy washed across his face. His inward remembrance and love of country produced an outward response.

Although the Israelites expressed an outward worship, they didn’t possess an inward love of God. Sure, an observer might believe that they worshiped God inwardly. But in truth, their hearts secretly served other gods. “In their secret chambers of idolatry and imagery,” said Clarence Macartney, “they bowed down before the grinning images of Baal.”

Today, as we express our adoration and worship of God, we can either be like the student of birds or like the Irishman who responded emotionally to their song. The observer simply admires what takes place, but experiences no feelings of love and devotion. However, the true worshiper—upon hearing songs about God and words of his heavenly home—feels his heart beat faster, thinking of a glorious hope for the future. And all of us long to feel this beat, because it makes our hearts come alive.

Anyone can go through the outward motions. But we can’t worship by just playing a role. We have to make it the aim of our heart. When we offer our heart to God in love and adoration, he, in return, washes awe and joy across our soul.

To Take Away
  • How does “going through the motions” of worship make you feel?
  • In what ways do you sincerely worship God?
  • How does your worship of God affect your daily living?
Many years ago a number of skylarks imported from England began to breed and dot the American landscape. One day, a man who studied birds sat listening with solemn interest to the song of the immigrant birds.…

John Piper Devotional — How to Fight Anxiety
How to Fight Anxiety

Cast all your anxieties on him, for he cares about you.

Psalm 56:3 says, “When I am afraid, I put my trust in thee.”

Notice: it does not say, “I never struggle with fear.” Fear strikes, and the battle begins. So the Bible does not assume that true believers will have no anxieties. Instead, the Bible tells us how to fight when they strike.

For example, 1 Peter 5:7 says, “Cast all your anxieties on him, for he cares about you.” It does not say, you will never feel any anxieties. It says, when you have them, cast them on God. When the mud splatters your windshield and you temporarily lose sight of the road and start to swerve in anxiety, turn on your wipers and squirt your windshield washer.

So my response to the person who has to deal with feelings of anxiety every day is to say: that’s more or less normal. At least it is for me, ever since my teenage years. The issue is: How do we fight them?

The answer to that question is: we fight anxieties by fighting against unbelief and fighting for faith in future grace. And the way you fight this “good fight” is by meditating on God’s assurances of future grace and by asking for the help of his Spirit.

The windshield wipers are the promises of God that clear away the mud of unbelief, and the windshield washer fluid is the help of the Holy Spirit. The battle to be freed from sin is fought “by the Spirit and faith in the truth” (2 Thessalonians 2:13).

The work of the Spirit and the Word of truth. These are the great faith-builders. Without the softening work of the Holy Spirit, the wipers of the Word just scrape over the blinding clumps of unbelief.

Both are necessary—the Spirit and the Word. We read the promises of God and we pray for the help of his Spirit. And as the windshield clears so that we can see the welfare that God plans for us (Jeremiah 29:11), our faith grows stronger and the swerving of anxiety smooths out.
Fear strikes, and the battle begins.

Un dia a la Vez — Desesperación Testimonio de sanidad (cuarta parte)
Desesperación Testimonio de sanidad
(cuarta parte)

La oración de fe sanará al enfermo y el Señor lo levantará. Y si ha pecado, su pecado se le perdonará.

¿Cuántas veces has vivido una prueba donde pasan los días y las semanas sin ver mejoría, ni cambio, y te desesperas? Lo que sucede es que lo que vemos y vivimos no coincide con lo que nos promete Dios.

Eso me pasó a mí. Tuve momentos en los que lloré amargamente. Tenía la promesa de que Dios me sanaría, pero mi condición me mostraba lo contrario, pues a duras penas podía caminar. Ni siquiera pude ingerir alimentos durante dos meses. Entonces, cuando pude comer, mi organismo rechazaba la comida. Era muy difícil sentir que no tenía control de mí misma, hasta tenía que usar pañales. Así que solo decía: «Dios puede sacarme de esto».

Fue una verdadera prueba experimentar el insomnio y pude entender a las personas con esta condición. Mis días eran eternos, largos, interminables. Por el día mi mente estaba un poco ocupada con las visitas y mi familia, pero cuando se iban todos, me quedaba en ese cuarto sola con un frío que me calaba los huesos sin poder dormir. Tuve extensas conversaciones con mi Dios donde le pregunté un sinnúmero de cosas y muchas no recibían respuestas.

No obstante, en medio de esa quietud obligada pude entender el propósito por el que estaba allí. En primer lugar, Dios me mostró que había descuidado mi salud y, en segundo lugar, que era muy autosuficiente. Estaba en tal vorágine de trabajo que no tenía tiempo ni para escuchar a Dios. Así que esa fue la única manera en la que, estando inmóvil, pude ver su voluntad para mi vida.

Un Día a la Vez Copyright © by Claudia Pinzón
¿Cuántas veces has vivido una prueba donde pasan los días y las semanas sin ver mejoría, ni cambio, y te desesperas?

Devocional CPTLN — Una deuda real

Una deuda real

Entonces se le acercó Pedro y le dijo: «Señor, si mi hermano peca contra mí, ¿cuántas veces debo perdonarlo? ¿Hasta siete veces?» Jesús le dijo: «No te digo que hasta siete veces, sino hasta setenta veces siete.» Por eso, el reino de los cielos es semejante a un rey que quiso hacer cuentas con sus siervos. Cuando comenzó a hacer cuentas, le llevaron a uno que le debía plata por millones. Como éste no podía pagar, su señor ordenó que lo vendieran, junto con su mujer y sus hijos, y con todo lo que tenía, para que la deuda quedara pagada. Pero aquel siervo se postró ante él, y le suplicó: «Señor, ten paciencia conmigo, y yo te lo pagaré todo.» El rey de aquel siervo se compadeció de él, lo dejó libre y le perdonó la deuda. Cuando aquel siervo salió, se encontró con uno de sus consiervos, que le debía cien días de salario, y agarrándolo por el cuello le dijo: «Págame lo que me debes.» Su consiervo se puso de rodillas y le rogó: «Ten paciencia conmigo, y yo te lo pagaré todo.» Pero aquél no quiso, sino que lo mandó a la cárcel hasta que pagara la deuda. Cuando sus consiervos vieron lo que pasaba, se pusieron muy tristes y fueron a contarle al rey todo lo que había pasado. Entonces el rey le ordenó presentarse ante él, y le dijo: «Siervo malvado, yo te perdoné toda aquella gran deuda, porque me rogaste. ¿No debías tú tener misericordia de tu consiervo, como yo la tuve de ti?» Y muy enojado, el rey lo entregó a los verdugos hasta que pagara todo lo que le debía. Así también mi Padre celestial hará con ustedes, si no perdonan de todo corazón a sus hermanos.

A lo largo de los años he escuchado muchas veces esta parábola. Lo que generalmente se enfatiza es la enorme diferencia entre el tamaño de las dos deudas, y la lección suele ser: "Mira cuánto te perdona Dios. Los pecados que otras personas cometen contra ti son pequeños en comparación. Así que perdónalos". Esto es absolutamente correcto. Pero no es tan útil, al menos para mí. ¿Por qué? Creo que porque lo que me hizo mi vecino fue tan real, tan hiriente y tan costoso, que no puedo decir: "No es nada, simplemente lo dejaré pasar. No me importa". Porque sí importa.

Jesús reconoce esto. En su parábola, menciona la cantidad que debe el segundo siervo: cien denarios. Eso no son cincuenta centavos o un par de dólares. Es el equivalente al salario de cuatro meses de uno de esos sirvientes. En términos modernos, estamos hablando del costo de un automóvil usado. Y si alguien nos trata mal en ese nivel importa, incluso si nuestros pecados contra Dios son astronómicamente más altos.

Entonces, ¿por qué sacar esto a colación? Porque Jesús no nos llama a fingir que nuestras heridas y daños no importan. Él nos llama a afrontar el dolor que nos ha costado el pecado de la otra persona, a decir la verdad, a admitir que sí importa sin minimizarlo y luego, con la ayuda de Dios, perdonarlo de todos modos. Ese es el perdón real, un perdón costoso y difícil.

¿Quién puede hacer esto? Solo alguien que tiene a Jesús viviendo dentro de sí, alguien a través de quien Jesús mismo está actuando. Jesús es el maestro del perdón difícil. Y si le traemos nuestras heridas y dolores, él puede obrar milagros de perdón en nuestra vida y relaciones. Puede llevar tiempo y mucho dolor. Pero él puede curarnos y mostrar misericordia a los demás.

ORACIÓN: Señor, ayúdame cuando parece que no puedo perdonar a los demás. Amén.

Dra. Kari Vo

Para reflexionar:
* ¿Cuál es la diferencia entre perdonar e ignorar o excusar?

* ¿Hay alguien a quien estés luchando por perdonar? Pídele ayuda al Señor.
© Copyright 2020 Cristo Para Todas Las Naciones. Que a través de estos devocionales, la Palabra de Dios te refresque en tu diario caminar.
A lo largo de los años he escuchado muchas veces esta parábola. Lo que generalmente se enfatiza es la enorme diferencia entre el tamaño de las dos deudas.

Хлеб наш насущный — Создание Его музыки

Создание Его музыки

Читать сейчас: 2 Коринфянам 3:17-18 | Библия за год: Притчи 8-9; 1 Коринфянам 3

Мы... преображаемся в тот же образ...

Регент хора Арианна Абела в детстве часто сидела на собственных руках, чтобы их спрятать. У нее на обеих руках от рождения не было нескольких пальцев, а некоторые срослись вместе. Еще она родилась без левой ноги и без пальцев на правой. Любительница музыки и обладательница лирического сопрано, она вначале планировала получить образование по специальности «госуправление». Но однажды преподаватель по хоровому пению попросил ее дирижировать, отчего ее руки оказались на виду. В тот день она нашла свое призвание. Позже она стала руководить церковными хорами. В настоящее время она работает регентом хора в университете. «Мои учителя что-то во мне увидели», – говорит Абела.

Ее вдохновляющая история побуждает верующих задаться вопросом: «Что видит в нас наш святой Учитель Бог, вопреки всем “ограничениям”»? Прежде всего, Он видит Себя. «И сотворил Бог человека по образу Своему, по образу Божьему сотворил его; мужчину и женщину сотворил их» (Быт. 1:27).

Как носители Его славного образа, мы призваны отражать Его перед другими. Для Абелы это значит, что самое главное – Иисус, а не ее руки или отсутствие пальцев. «Мы же все открытым лицом, как в зеркале, взирая на славу Господню, преображаемся в тот же образ», – пишет Павел (2 Кор. 3:18).

Мы тоже можем, как Абела, дирижировать своей жизнью под преображающим влиянием Иисуса Христа (ст. 18), вознося песню жизни, которая звучит для Божьей славы.
Как осознание того, что вы – носитель Божьего образа, помогает вам смотреть на себя по-другому? Как это помогает вам в общении с людьми?
Благодарю, Боже, что Ты создал меня по Своему образу. Помоги мне применять эту истину ко всей своей жизни.

© 2020 Хлеб Наш Насущный
Регент хора Арианна Абела в детстве часто сидела на собственных руках, чтобы их спрятать. У нее на обеих руках от рождения не было нескольких пальцев, а некоторые срослись вместе. Еще она родилась без левой ноги и без пальцев на правой.