Wednesday, September 23, 2020

The Daily Bible Readings for WEDNESDAY, September 23, 2020

The Daily Readings
WEDNESDAY, September 23, 2020
Psalm 119:97-104; Numbers 11:18-23, 31-32; Matthew 18:1-5
The Holy Bible, King James Version (KJV)

Today’s Verse-of-the-Day: Romans 5:3-4
And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; And patience, experience; and experience, hope:
A blessed change takes place in the sinner's state, when he becomes a true believer, whatever he has been. Being justified by faith he has peace with God. The holy, righteous God, cannot be at peace with a sinner, while under the guilt of sin. Justification takes away the guilt, and so makes way for peace. This is through our Lord Jesus Christ; through him as the great Peace-maker, the Mediator between God and man. The saints' happy state is a state of grace. Into this grace we are brought, which teaches that we were not born in this state. We could not have got into it of ourselves, but we are led into it, as pardoned offenders. Therein we stand, a posture that denotes perseverance; we stand firm and safe, upheld by the power of God. And those who have hope for the glory of God hereafter, have enough to rejoice in now. Tribulation worketh patience, not in and of itself, but the powerful grace of God working in and with the tribulation. Patient sufferers have most of the Divine consolations, which abound as afflictions abound. It works needful experience of ourselves. This hope will not disappoint, because it is sealed with the Holy Spirit as a Spirit of love. It is the gracious work of the blessed Spirit to shed abroad the love of God in the hearts of all the saints. A right sense of God's love to us, will make us not ashamed, either of our hope, or of our sufferings for him.

Today’s Readings:
God’s word sweeter than honey
97 O how love I thy law! it is my meditation all the day.

98 Thou through thy commandments hast made me wiser than mine enemies: for they are ever with me.

99 I have more understanding than all my teachers: for thy testimonies are my meditation.

100 I understand more than the ancients, because I keep thy precepts.

101 I have refrained my feet from every evil way, that I might keep thy word.

102 I have not departed from thy judgments: for thou hast taught me.

103 How sweet are thy words unto my taste! yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth!

104 Through thy precepts I get understanding: therefore I hate every false way.
What we love, we love to think of. All true wisdom is from God. A good man carries his Bible with him, if not in his hands, yet in his head and in his heart. By meditation on God's testimonies we understand more than our teachers, when we understand our own hearts. The written word is a more sure guide to heaven, than all the fathers, the teachers, and ancients of the church. We cannot, with any comfort or boldness, attend God in holy duties, while under guilt, or in any by-way. It was Divine grace in his heart, that enabled the psalmist to receive these instructions. The soul has its tastes as well as the body. Our relish for the word of God will be greatest, when that for the world and the flesh is least. The way of sin is a wrong way; and the more understanding we get by the precepts of God, the more rooted will be our hatred of sin; and the more ready we are in the Scriptures, the better furnished we are with answers to temptation.

God sends quails
11:18 And say thou unto the people, Sanctify yourselves against to morrow, and ye shall eat flesh: for ye have wept in the ears of the Lord, saying, Who shall give us flesh to eat? for it was well with us in Egypt: therefore the Lord will give you flesh, and ye shall eat.

19 Ye shall not eat one day, nor two days, nor five days, neither ten days, nor twenty days;

20 But even a whole month, until it come out at your nostrils, and it be loathsome unto you: because that ye have despised the Lord which is among you, and have wept before him, saying, Why came we forth out of Egypt?

21 And Moses said, The people, among whom I am, are six hundred thousand footmen; and thou hast said, I will give them flesh, that they may eat a whole month.

22 Shall the flocks and the herds be slain for them, to suffice them? or shall all the fish of the sea be gathered together for them, to suffice them?

23 And the Lord said unto Moses, Is the Lord's hand waxed short? thou shalt see now whether my word shall come to pass unto thee or not.

31 And there went forth a wind from the Lord, and brought quails from the sea, and let them fall by the camp, as it were a day's journey on this side, and as it were a day's journey on the other side, round about the camp, and as it were two cubits high upon the face of the earth.

32 And the people stood up all that day, and all that night, and all the next day, and they gathered the quails: he that gathered least gathered ten homers: and they spread them all abroad for themselves round about the camp.
God performed his promise to the people, in giving them flesh. How much more diligent men are in collecting the meat that perishes, than in labouring for meat which endures to everlasting life! We are quick-sighted in the affairs of time; but stupidity blinds us as to the concerns of eternity. To pursue worldly advantages, we need no arguments; but when we are to secure the true riches, then we are all forgetfulness. Those who are under the power of a carnal mind, will have their lusts fulfilled, though it be to the certain damage and ruin of their precious souls. They paid dearly for their feasts. God often grants the desires of sinners in wrath, while he denies the desires of his own people in love. What we unduly desire, if we obtain it, we have reason to fear, will be some way or other a grief and cross to us. And what multitudes there are in all places, who shorten their lives by excess of one kind or other! Let us seek for those pleasures which satisfy, but never surfeit; and which will endure for evermore.

True greatness
18:1 At the same time came the disciples unto Jesus, saying, Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?

2 And Jesus called a little child unto him, and set him in the midst of them,

3 And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.

4 Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven.

5 And whoso shall receive one such little child in my name receiveth me.
Christ spoke many words of his sufferings, but only one of his glory; yet the disciples fasten upon that, and overlook the others. Many love to hear and speak of privileges and glory, who are willing to pass by the thoughts of work and trouble. Our Lord set a little child before them, solemnly assuring them, that unless they were converted and made like little children, they could not enter his kingdom. Children, when very young, do not desire authority, do not regard outward distinctions, are free from malice, are teachable, and willingly dependent on their parents. It is true that they soon begin to show other dispositions, and other ideas are taught them at an early age; but these are marks of childhood, and render them proper emblems of the lowly minds of true Christians. Surely we need to be daily renewed in the spirit of our minds, that we may become simple and humble, as little children, and willing to be the least of all. Let us daily study this subject, and examine our own spirits.

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).

Commentaries from Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Bible.

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 WEDNESDAY, September 23, 2020
Psalm 119:97-104; Numbers 11:18-23, 31-32; Matthew 18:1-5 (KJV)

Prayer of the Day for WEDNESDAY, September 23, 2020

Prayer of the Day
WEDNESDAY, September 23, 2020

This is why it says: “When he ascended on high, he took many captives and gave gifts to his people."

Our dear Father in heaven, we thank you that you have given us the Lord Jesus on high and that we are allowed to be with him and find joy even while still surrounded by all that must fade and perish. For in Jesus Christ you hold us by the hand through anxiety, need, and death. Grant that he may be with us as we continue our pilgrimage. Grant us your Spirit, for we are poor in spirit and in soul. Give us your Holy Spirit from on high. Just in our weakness, we come to know what strength and victory you bring through the Lord Jesus, our Savior. The Lord Jesus is our Savior for body, soul, and spirit for ever and ever. Amen.

Verse of the Day for WEDNESDAY, September 23, 2020

Romans 5:3-4
And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; And patience, experience; and experience, hope:
Read all of Romans 5

Listen to Romans 5

The Holy Bible, King James Version (KJV)

Ichthus Ministries Daily Devotions — You Don't Have To

You Don't Have To

So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though He was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Therefore God has highly exalted Him and bestowed on Him the Name that is above every name, so that at the Name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Some years ago there was a really bad fight in my home congregation, and a couple of people were spreading horrible lies about me and my husband. And people started calling us and telling us to fight back. "Get your story out there!" they said. "Fight back. Tell everybody about all the bad things X and Y have done, all the secret stuff you know about them. Write letters. Make phone calls. Plan strategies. Don't let them have the last word."

Normally, we would have done exactly that. But not this time. After praying, we were convinced that God wanted us to follow Jesus' example during His suffering, instead. And so we stood still and let God deal with it.

Do you know what a relief that was? It still hurt, yes. And of course we told the truth when we were asked. But it was lovely not having to manage our own defense—not staying up late worrying—not calculating the effects of every word we said. We didn't have to. Our enemies were grasping for power, for popularity, to make a name for themselves. We knew that we already had a name they could never take away from us—children of God, dearly beloved through Jesus our Savior. We didn't have to defend that. God has already done it.

The same is true for you. You don't need to win every argument—to come out on top in every battle—to be seen victorious in every struggle. If you choose, you can tell the truth and walk away. You can leave your defense, and your future, in the hands of God, just as Jesus did. That might mean vindication, or it might mean more suffering. No matter. The things that really matter are the things that no one can take away from you—the gifts that God holds safe in His hands.

Because Jesus suffered and laid down His life for you, you matter. You are loved and forgiven. God knows your name, and He will never abandon you. He treasures you. Because Jesus rose from the dead, you will live forever. You may suffer, but you cannot be permanently destroyed. You may lose so much—family, position, reputation, even life itself—but you will not lose God, and He will not lose you. You are His forever.

Dear Lord, help me to trust You when I am afraid. Give me Your peace. Amen.

Dr. Kari Vo

Reflection Questions:
1. Do you know anybody who has to have the last word in every argument?

2. What does that attitude do to their sense of peace, do you think?

3. When have you rested and trusted God to take care of a bad situation?
Use these devotions in your newsletter and bulletin! Used by permission; all rights reserved by the Int'l LLL (LHM).
Some years ago there was a really bad fight in my home congregation, and a couple of people were spreading horrible lies about me and my husband.

Standing Strong Through the Storm — THE FORMS OF THE CHURCH

Day after day, in the temple courts and from house to house, they never stopped teaching and proclaiming the good news that Jesus is the Christ.

The place in which a church meets varies. The use of big buildings, complex organizations, involved programs, huge budgets that provide for schools, hospitals, orphanages, and other social activities are only possible in financially strong unrestricted societies.

Although the Lord has blessed these activities in many places in the world, we must recognize that they are not essential to the existence of the church. In some countries, these activities are forbidden by the government, while in others, the local economic situation makes them impossible. Still, the church can thrive, because it is not dependent on these things. Serious problems have arisen when Christians have become confused on this point.

A number of years ago, for example, some Vietnamese leaders thought that their lack of funds for such things was the cause of the slow growth of Christianity there. On one occasion, the following conversation was overheard:

"Do you have communists in your part of the country?" the observer asked. "Most assuredly. They are there," the leader replied.

“Are they growing in numbers and influence?" he then asked. The leader hesitated momentarily, then admitted sadly, “Yes, they are growing very fast."

“Can you show me their meeting places and schools or introduce me to their leaders?" the observer continued. "Certainly not," the leader said in disgust. "If they are known, they will be arrested."

"You mean they are secret, without buildings or property and still they grow in number?" the observer asked in amazement. "Yes, you could say that," the leader responded.

"Then it must be that their growing influence does not depend on such things. If they can be wrong in their beliefs and still grow without money and buildings, why do you think the church of Jesus Christ needs these things?" the man concluded.

If God provides these things, then use them for His glory. If He does not, remember that the New Testament church had none of these things, but they turned their world upside down (Acts 17:6). The early Christians did not confuse the church’s functions with methods. If they had done so, the church would have died in the bondage of Jewish legalism. The early churches were not encumbered by the presence of buildings, nor hindered by the lack of them. They met in public places when they were permitted to do so, but when they were not, they went from house to house.

RESPONSE: I will no longer confuse the forms of the church with the biblical functions of the church.

PRAYER: Thank You Lord for those who use their homes as centers for Your worship and declaration of the good news of Your love.

Standing Strong Through The Storm (SSTS), a daily devotional message by SSTS author Paul Estabrooks. © 2011 Open Doors International. Used by permission.
Although the Lord has blessed these activities in many places in the world, we must recognize that they are not essential to the existence of the church.

John Piper Devotional — Hope for the Worst of Sinners
Hope for the Worst of Sinners

“I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show mercy on whom I will show mercy.”

Moses needed hope that God really could have mercy on a stiff-necked people who had just committed idolatry and scorned the God who brought them out of Egypt.

To give Moses the hope and confidence he needed, God said, “I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious.” In other words, "My choices do not depend on the degree of evil or good in man but solely upon my sovereign will. Therefore no one can say he is too evil to be shown grace."

The doctrine of unconditional election is the great doctrine of hope for the worst of sinners. It means that when it comes to being a candidate for grace, your background has nothing to do with God’s choice.

If you have not been born again and brought to saving faith in Jesus Christ, do not sink into hopelessness thinking that the excessive rottenness or hardness of your past life is an insurmountable obstacle to God’s gracious work in your life. God loves to magnify the freedom of his grace by saving the worst of sinners.

Turn from your sin; call upon the Lord. Even in this devotional he is being gracious to you and giving you strong encouragement to come to him for mercy.

“Come, let us reason together, says the Lord: though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool” (Isaiah 1:18).
The doctrine of unconditional election is the great doctrine of hope for the worst of sinners.

Un dia a la Vez — La bendición da felicidad, no tristeza
La bendición da felicidad, no tristeza

Tuya es, Señor, la salvación; ¡envía tu bendición sobre tu pueblo!

Si volteas la página y vuelves a leer el versículo de ayer, te darás cuenta que Dios afirma en su Palabra que su bendición enriquece y no da tristeza.

Quizá esta sería una buena prueba para nosotros y así poder estar seguros de que lo que Él nos da es perfecto. Además, que Él es el único que conoce el tiempo en que nos debe dar sus bendiciones y que no se equivoca, pues las conoce desde la eternidad.

Es normal que tengamos sueños que se convertirán realidad y otros que no pasarán de ser sueños o caprichos que no están en los planes de Dios. Lo que sí te puedo garantizar es que lo mejor para nuestra vida son los sueños que nos da nuestro Padre celestial, ya que Él sabe lo que nos hará felices.

Aprendamos a esperar ese día en que llegue la bendición. Sentirás paz, gozo y un gran respaldo espiritual. Entonces, gozarás en verdad de ese regalo y te sentirás feliz.

Lo más hermoso de todo esto es que siempre Dios tratará de cumplir tus más profundos anhelos para verte feliz.

Un Día a la Vez Copyright © by Claudia Pinzón
Es normal que tengamos sueños que se convertirán realidad y otros que no pasarán de ser sueños o caprichos que no están en los planes de Dios.

Devocional CPTLN — No tienes por qué

No tienes por qué

Por tanto, si hay alguna consolación en Cristo, si algún consuelo de amor, si alguna comunión del Espíritu, si algún afecto entrañable, si alguna misericordia, completen mi gozo sintiendo lo mismo, teniendo el mismo amor, unánimes, sintiendo una misma cosa. No hagan nada por contienda o por vanagloria. Al contrario, háganlo con humildad y considerando cada uno a los demás como superiores a sí mismo. No busque cada uno su propio interés, sino cada cual también el de los demás. Que haya en ustedes el mismo sentir que hubo en Cristo Jesús, quien, siendo en forma de Dios, no estimó el ser igual a Dios como cosa a que aferrarse, sino que se despojó a sí mismo y tomó forma de siervo, y se hizo semejante a los hombres; y estando en la condición de hombre, se humilló a sí mismo y se hizo obediente hasta la muerte, y muerte de cruz. Por lo cual Dios también lo exaltó hasta lo sumo, y le dio un nombre que es sobre todo nombre, para que en el nombre de Jesús se doble toda rodilla de los que están en los cielos, y en la tierra, y debajo de la tierra; y toda lengua confiese que Jesucristo es el Señor, para gloria de Dios el Padre.

Hace algunos años hubo una pelea muy fea en mi iglesia, y un par de personas estaban esparciendo mentiras horribles sobre mi esposo y yo. Muchos nos llamaron para decirnos que lucháramos. "¡Cuenten su historia!", nos decían. "Defiéndanse. Den a conocer todas las cosas malas que X e Y han hecho, todas las cosas secretas que saben de ellos. Escriban cartas. Planifiquen estrategias. No les dejen tener la última palabra".

Normalmente, habríamos hecho exactamente eso. Pero no esa vez. Después de orar, estábamos convencidos de que Dios quería que siguiéramos el ejemplo de Jesús durante su sufrimiento, así es que nos quedamos quietos y dejamos que Dios se ocupara de ello.

¡Qué gran alivio! Todavía duele, sí. Y, por supuesto, dijimos la verdad cuando se nos preguntó. Pero fue encantador no tener que planificar nuestra defensa, no tener que quedarnos despiertos hasta tarde preocupándonos, no tener que calcular los efectos de cada palabra que íbamos a decir. Nuestros enemigos buscaban poder, popularidad, hacerse un nombre. Nosotros sabíamos que ya teníamos un nombre que nunca podrían quitarnos: hijos de Dios, amados a través de Jesús nuestro Salvador. No tuvimos que defender eso. Dios ya lo ha hecho.

Lo mismo es cierto para ti. No es necesario que ganes todos los argumentos ni que salgas vencedor en cada batalla, para ser visto victorioso en cada lucha. Si quieres, puedes decir la verdad y marcharte. Puedes dejar tu defensa y tu futuro en manos de Dios, tal como lo hizo Jesús. Eso podría significar reivindicación o quizás más sufrimiento. No importa. Las cosas que realmente importan son las que nadie te puede quitar: los dones que Dios tiene a salvo en sus manos.

Porque Jesús sufrió y dio su vida por ti, tú importas. Eres amado y perdonado. Dios conoce tu nombre y nunca te abandonará. Él te atesora. Porque Jesús resucitó de entre los muertos, vivirás para siempre. Puedes sufrir, pero no puedes ser destruido permanentemente. Puedes perder mucho —familia, posición, reputación, incluso la vida misma— pero no perderás a Dios, y Él no te perderá a ti. Eres Suyo para siempre.

ORACIÓN: Amado Señor, ayúdame a confiar en Ti cuando tenga miedo. Dame tu paz. Amén.

Dra. Kari Vo

Para reflexionar:
* ¿Crees ser capaz de asumir una actitud así?

* ¿Alguna vez has descansado y confiado en Dios para que se encargue de una mala situación?
© Copyright 2020 Cristo Para Todas Las Naciones. Que a través de estos devocionales, la Palabra de Dios te refresque en tu diario caminar.
Hace algunos años hubo una pelea muy fea en mi iglesia, y un par de personas estaban esparciendo mentiras horribles sobre mi esposo y yo.

Ministérios Pão Diário — Ouvindo o seu irmão

Ouvindo o seu irmão

Escritura de hoje: Mateus 18:15–20

Bíblia em um ano: Cântico dos Cânticos 1–3; Gálatas 2

…quem trouxer o pecador de volta de seu desvio o salvará da morte e trará perdão para muitos pecados.

“Você precisa me ouvir; sou seu irmão! ”. O apelo vinha de um irmão mais velho preocupado com o mais novo, que estava afastando-se demais dele, mais do que ele podia controlar. Evidentemente, o mais velho era mais capaz de julgar o que seria o melhor naquela situação.

Quantos de nós resistimos ao conselho sábio de um irmão ou irmã? Se você já teve de enfrentar as consequências de resistir ao bom conselho de alguém mais experiente, você não está sozinho.

Uma das maiores fontes que nós, cristãos, podemos ter é a família — pessoas espiritualmente vinculadas por causa da fé comum em Jesus. Esta família inclui pessoas amadurecidas que amam a Deus e amam umas às outras. Como o irmão mais novo da história, muitas vezes precisamos de uma palavra de cautela ou correção para voltarmos ao caminho certo. Isso acontece particularmente quando ofendemos alguém ou quando somos ofendidos. Fazer o que é correto pode ser difícil, mas as palavras de Jesus em Mateus 18:15-20 nos mostram o que fazer quando as ofensas acontecem dentro da nossa família espiritual.

Felizmente, nosso Pai celestial coloca em nossa vida pessoas preparadas para ajudar-nos a honrar a Ele e aos outros. E quando as ouvimos, as coisas melhoram na família (v.15).

Por:  Arthur Jackson

Refletir & Orar
Pai, louvamos-te por nos colocares em Tua família espiritual. Ajuda-nos a aprender e crescer com as palavras e atitudes de cristãos maduros.
A sabedoria cresce quando 
ouvimos as palavras de cristãos experientes.

© 2020 Ministérios Pão Diário
Quantos de nós resistimos ao conselho sábio de um irmão ou irmã?