Monday, June 21, 2021

The Daily Bible Readings for Monday, June 21, 2021

 

The Daily Bible Readings
Monday, June 21, 2021
Psalm 119:113-128; 1 Samuel 18:6-30; Acts 27:13-38 (NIV)
with commentaries from Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Bible

Today’s Verse-of-the-Day:
Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.
Life Principle:
Every now and then we do well to take stock of our situation, so I’d like to ask you to look around. What’s happening in your life and in the life of your family?

You may not be experiencing a difficult time. From your perspective, everything may seem sunny and clear. Storms come, however. At times, they roll over our lives with bounding blows. How do we maintain a sense of peace and spiritual balance when trials strike?

The answer is found in a close, abiding relationship with Jesus Christ. The words of Helen Lemmel’s classic hymn, “Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus,” contain a vital and exciting truth: an unshakable peace is available to all who turn the eyes of their hearts to Jesus.

Chances are that when adversity strikes, one of the first things you do is to wonder why. Then you may question what kind of impact it will have on your life. While reactions such as these are normal, we also need another response, and that is to turn to the One who holds all comfort and security firmly within His grasp.

No one, outside of God, is equipped to handle our problems. He never meant for us to be strong on our own. He wants us to find courage and hope and strength in Him and His Word.

Many wonder what they can do to change the feelings of anxiety they feel when they come under pressure. One of the first steps is to recognize anxiety for what it is, the opposite of peace. It is the fan that flames the fires of doubt and confusion and has the ability to leave us helplessly bundled up in worry and fear. When we cave in to thoughts of anxiety, we lose our spiritual focus and mindset. The key to overcoming anxiety is found only in the presence of God.

Paul admonishes us: “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God; and the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 4:6, 7).

Accepting God’s timetable and the limitations He places on a given situation helps to dispel rising anxiety. Therefore, let Him provide for you in His timing. When you accept life as a gift from the hand of God, then you will do what Helen Lemmel’s song says—you will turn your eyes toward Jesus. You will look full into His glorious face and there find mercy and grace, forgiveness and hope, peace and everlasting security.

What would you give to experience the peace of God? Are you willing to lay down the anger that haunts your soul because someone has done something to wound you? God knows the hurt you have experienced. Will you trust Him in quietness, knowing that He has not forgotten you but stands ready to heal you?

God’s peace is unshakable because there has never been a time or an event when God has felt disturbed. His peace and presence are sure. They are immovable. You will accomplish many things—great and mighty—when you keep your focus on God.

At one of the most difficult points in his life, David wrote Psalm 91, which begins: “Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, 'He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.'”

How could David write such words, especially with King Saul trying to kill him? David had a divine, unshakable peace within his heart. He knew this was God’s responsibility and David allowed Him to protect his life.

The safest place for you when trials come is in the everlasting arms of Jesus. After His resurrection, Jesus appeared to His disciples and said to them, “Peace be with you” (John 20:19). This was not a trite greeting; the Lord had a specific point in mind. He spoke of God’s peace, immovable and eternal—the peace you need today.

Does something trouble you? Has a conflict, a sorrow, a situation escalated beyond your control? Hear His word to you: “Peace be with you.”

Let His peace invade your heart. Tell Him all you are feeling. He understands and knows that life can be difficult—but He has a solution. Our peace resides in our Savior, who loves us unconditionally. He has promised to keep us and deliver us into the Father’s loving arms.

The answer is found in a close, abiding relationship with Jesus Christ.

Hear His word to you: “Peace be with you.”


Today’s Lectionary Readings:
From the Psalter
Psalm 119:113-128
Do Not Leave Me to my Oppressors


113 I hate double-minded people,
       but I love your law.
114 You are my refuge and my shield;
       I have put my hope in your word.
115 Away from me, you evildoers,
       that I may keep the commands of my God!
116 Sustain me, my God, according to your promise, and I will live;
       do not let my hopes be dashed.
117 Uphold me, and I will be delivered;
       I will always have regard for your decrees.
118 You reject all who stray from your decrees,
       for their delusions come to nothing.
119 All the wicked of the earth you discard like dross;
       therefore I love your statutes.
120 My flesh trembles in fear of you;
       I stand in awe of your laws.

121 I have done what is righteous and just;
       do not leave me to my oppressors.
122 Ensure your servant’s well-being;
       do not let the arrogant oppress me.
123 My eyes fail, looking for your salvation,
       looking for your righteous promise.
124 Deal with your servant according to your love
       and teach me your decrees.
125 I am your servant; give me discernment
       that I may understand your statutes.
126 It is time for you to act, Lord;
       your law is being broken.
127 Because I love your commands
       more than gold, more than pure gold,
128 and because I consider all your precepts right,
       I hate every wrong path.


Commentary
The settling of God's word in heaven, is opposed to the changes and revolutions of the earth. And the engagements of God's covenant are established more firmly than the earth itself. All the creatures answer the ends of their creation: shall man, who alone is endued with reason, be the only unprofitable burden of the earth? We may make the Bible a pleasant companion at any time. But the word, without the grace of God, would not quicken us. See the best help for bad memories, namely, good affections; and though the exact words be lost, if the meaning remain, that is well. I am thine, not my own, not the world's; save me from sin, save me from ruin. The Lord will keep the man in peace, whose mind is stayed on him. It is poor perfection which one sees and end of. Such are all things in this world, which pass for perfections. The glory of man is but as the flower of the grass. The psalmist had seen the fullness of the word of God, and its sufficiency. The word of the Lord reaches to all cases, to all times. It will take us from all confidence in man, or in our own wisdom, strength, and righteousness. Thus shall we seek comfort and happiness from Christ alone.


From the Historical books of the Old Testament
1 Samuel 18:6-30
Saul Becomes David’s Enemy


18:6 When the men were returning home after David had killed the Philistine, the women came out from all the towns of Israel to meet King Saul with singing and dancing, with joyful songs and with timbrels and lyres. 7 As they danced, they sang:
“Saul has slain his thousands,
    and David his tens of thousands.”
8 Saul was very angry; this refrain displeased him greatly. “They have credited David with tens of thousands,” he thought, “but me with only thousands. What more can he get but the kingdom?” 9 And from that time on Saul kept a close eye on David.

10 The next day an evil spirit from God came forcefully on Saul. He was prophesying in his house, while David was playing the lyre, as he usually did. Saul had a spear in his hand 11 and he hurled it, saying to himself, “I’ll pin David to the wall.” But David eluded him twice.

12 Saul was afraid of David, because the Lord was with David but had departed from Saul. 13 So he sent David away from him and gave him command over a thousand men, and David led the troops in their campaigns. 14 In everything he did he had great success, because the Lord was with him. 15 When Saul saw how successful he was, he was afraid of him. 16 But all Israel and Judah loved David, because he led them in their campaigns.

17 Saul said to David, “Here is my older daughter Merab. I will give her to you in marriage; only serve me bravely and fight the battles of the Lord.” For Saul said to himself, “I will not raise a hand against him. Let the Philistines do that!”

18 But David said to Saul, “Who am I, and what is my family or my clan in Israel, that I should become the king’s son-in-law?” 19 So when the time came for Merab, Saul’s daughter, to be given to David, she was given in marriage to Adriel of Meholah.

20 Now Saul’s daughter Michal was in love with David, and when they told Saul about it, he was pleased. 21 “I will give her to him,” he thought, “so that she may be a snare to him and so that the hand of the Philistines may be against him.” So Saul said to David, “Now you have a second opportunity to become my son-in-law.”

22 Then Saul ordered his attendants: “Speak to David privately and say, ‘Look, the king likes you, and his attendants all love you; now become his son-in-law.’”

23 They repeated these words to David. But David said, “Do you think it is a small matter to become the king’s son-in-law? I’m only a poor man and little known.”

24 When Saul’s servants told him what David had said, 25 Saul replied, “Say to David, ‘The king wants no other price for the bride than a hundred Philistine foreskins, to take revenge on his enemies.’” Saul’s plan was to have David fall by the hands of the Philistines.

26 When the attendants told David these things, he was pleased to become the king’s son-in-law. So before the allotted time elapsed, 27 David took his men with him and went out and killed two hundred Philistines and brought back their foreskins. They counted out the full number to the king so that David might become the king’s son-in-law. Then Saul gave him his daughter Michal in marriage.

28 When Saul realized that the Lord was with David and that his daughter Michal loved David, 29 Saul became still more afraid of him, and he remained his enemy the rest of his days.

30 The Philistine commanders continued to go out to battle, and as often as they did, David met with more success than the rest of Saul’s officers, and his name became well known.

Commentary
Verses 6-11 — David's troubles not only immediately follow his triumphs, but arise from them; such is the vanity of that which seems greatest in this world. It is a sign that the Spirit of God is departed from men, if, like Saul, they are peevish, envious, suspicious, and ill-natured. Compare David, with his harp in his hand, aiming to serve Saul, and Saul, with his javelin in his hand, aiming to slay David; and observe the sweetness and usefulness of God's persecuted people, and the barbarity of their persecutors. But David's safety must be ascribed to God's providence.

Verses 12-30 — For a long time David was kept in continual apprehension of falling by the hand of Saul, yet he persevered in meek and respectful behavior towards his persecutor. How uncommon is such prudence and discretion, especially under insults and provocations! Let us inquire if we imitate this part of the exemplary character before us. Are we behaving wisely in all our ways? Is there no sinful omission, no rashness of spirit, nothing wrong in our conduct? Opposition and perverseness in others, will not excuse wrong tempers in us, but should increase our care, and attention to the duties of our station. Consider Him that endured contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be weary and faint in your minds, Hebrews 12:3. If David magnified the honor of being son-in-law to king Saul, how should we magnify the honor of being sons to the King of kings!


From the Book of Acts
Acts 27:13-38
Paul and the Storm at Sea


27:13 When a gentle south wind began to blow, they saw their opportunity; so they weighed anchor and sailed along the shore of Crete. 14 Before very long, a wind of hurricane force, called the Northeaster, swept down from the island. 15 The ship was caught by the storm and could not head into the wind; so we gave way to it and were driven along. 16 As we passed to the lee of a small island called Cauda, we were hardly able to make the lifeboat secure, 17 so the men hoisted it aboard. Then they passed ropes under the ship itself to hold it together. Because they were afraid they would run aground on the sandbars of Syrtis, they lowered the sea anchor and let the ship be driven along. 18 We took such a violent battering from the storm that the next day they began to throw the cargo overboard. 19 On the third day, they threw the ship’s tackle overboard with their own hands. 20 When neither sun nor stars appeared for many days and the storm continued raging, we finally gave up all hope of being saved.

21 After they had gone a long time without food, Paul stood up before them and said: “Men, you should have taken my advice not to sail from Crete; then you would have spared yourselves this damage and loss. 22 But now I urge you to keep up your courage, because not one of you will be lost; only the ship will be destroyed. 23 Last night an angel of the God to whom I belong and whom I serve stood beside me 24 and said, ‘Do not be afraid, Paul. You must stand trial before Caesar; and God has graciously given you the lives of all who sail with you.’ 25 So keep up your courage, men, for I have faith in God that it will happen just as he told me. 26 Nevertheless, we must run aground on some island.”

27 On the fourteenth night we were still being driven across the Adriatic Sea, when about midnight the sailors sensed they were approaching land. 28 They took soundings and found that the water was a hundred and twenty feet deep. A short time later they took soundings again and found it was ninety feet deep. 29 Fearing that we would be dashed against the rocks, they dropped four anchors from the stern and prayed for daylight. 30 In an attempt to escape from the ship, the sailors let the lifeboat down into the sea, pretending they were going to lower some anchors from the bow. 31 Then Paul said to the centurion and the soldiers, “Unless these men stay with the ship, you cannot be saved.” 32 So the soldiers cut the ropes that held the lifeboat and let it drift away.

33 Just before dawn Paul urged them all to eat. “For the last fourteen days,” he said, “you have been in constant suspense and have gone without food—you haven’t eaten anything. 34 Now I urge you to take some food. You need it to survive. Not one of you will lose a single hair from his head.” 35 After he said this, he took some bread and gave thanks to God in front of them all. Then he broke it and began to eat. 36 They were all encouraged and ate some food themselves. 37 Altogether there were 276 of us on board. 38 When they had eaten as much as they wanted, they lightened the ship by throwing the grain into the sea.

Commentary
Verses 13-20 — Those who launch forth on the ocean of this world, with a fair gale, know not what storms they may meet with; and therefore must not easily take it for granted that they have obtained their purpose. Let us never expect to be quite safe till we enter heaven. They saw neither sun nor stars for many days. Thus melancholy sometimes is the condition of the people of God as to their spiritual matters; they walk in darkness, and have no light. See what the wealth of this world is: though coveted as a blessing, the time may come when it will be a burden; not only too heavy to be carried safely, but heavy enough to sink him that has it. The children of this world can be prodigal of their goods for the saving their lives, yet are sparing of them in works of piety and charity, and in suffering for Christ. Any man will rather make shipwreck of his goods than of his life; but many rather make shipwreck of faith and a good conscience, than of their goods. The means the sailors used did not succeed; but when sinners give up all hope of saving themselves, they are prepared to understand God's word, and to trust in his mercy through Jesus Christ.

Verses 21-29 — They did not hearken to the apostle when he warned them of their danger; yet if they acknowledge their folly, and repent of it, he will speak comfort and relief to them when in danger. Most people bring themselves into trouble, because they do not know when they are well off; they come to harm and loss by aiming to mend their condition, often against advice. Observe the solemn profession Paul made of relation to God. No storms or tempests can hinder God's favor to his people, for he is a Help always at hand. It is a comfort to the faithful servants of God when in difficulties, that as long as the Lord has any work for them to do, their lives shall be prolonged. If Paul had thrust himself needlessly into bad company, he might justly have been cast away with them; but God calling him into it, they are preserved with him. They are given thee; there is no greater satisfaction to a good man than to know he is a public blessing. He comforts them with the same comforts wherewith he himself was comforted. God is ever faithful, therefore let all who have an interest in his promises be ever cheerful. As, with God, saying and doing are not two things, believing and enjoying should not be so with us. Hope is an anchor of the soul, sure and steadfast, entering into that within the veil. Let those who are in spiritual darkness hold fast by that, and think not of putting to sea again, but abide by Christ, and wait till the day break, and the shadows flee away.

Verses 30-38 — God, who appointed the end, that they should be saved, appointed the means, that they should be saved by the help of these shipmen. Duty is ours, events are God's; we do not trust God, but tempt him, when we say we put ourselves under his protection, if we do not use proper means, such as are within our power, for our safety. But how selfish are men in general, often even ready to seek their own safety by the destruction of others! Happy those who have such a one as Paul in their company, who not only had intercourse with Heaven, but was of an enlivening spirit to those about him. The sorrow of the world works death, while joy in God is life and peace in the greatest distresses and dangers. The comfort of God's promises can only be ours by believing dependence on him, to fulfill his word to us; and the salvation he reveals must be waited for in use of the means he appoints. If God has chosen us to salvation, he has also appointed that we shall obtain it by repentance, faith, prayer, and persevering obedience; it is fatal presumption to expect it in any other way. It is an encouragement to people to commit themselves to Christ as their Savior, when those who invite them, clearly show that they do so themselves.



Today’s Lectionary Readings are selected from the Revised Common Lectionary Daily Readings, a three-year cyclical lectionary. We are currently in Year B. Beginning with the first Sunday of Advent in 2021, we will be in Year C. The year which ended at Advent 2020 was Year A. 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. www.commontexts.org. The Bible texts of the Old Testament, Epistle, and Gospel lessons are from The Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide. Commentaries from Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Bible.

The Morning Prayer for Monday, June 21, 2021

 

The Morning Prayer
Monday, June 21, 2021


Father! You have given them to me, and I want them to be with me where I am, so that they may see my glory, the glory you gave me; for you loved me before the world was made.
John 17:24 (GNT)

Lord our God, we thank you that you have revealed your glory in your Son Jesus Christ. We thank you that today we can still see and feel the glorious grace which streams out from Jesus Christ in his victory over the world, the powerful help which benefits all those who find faith. Grant that a further glory may be revealed, faith dwelling in the hearts of all people, faith that can conquer all the need and suffering on earth, faith that is the power to look to you, to become inwardly quiet in you, and to hope in you at all times. Then your help will come quickly, more quickly than we can imagine. It will come on us unawares, for the Savior has said, “See, I shall come quickly.” We want to hope and believe and trust till the end. Amen.

Verse of the Day for Monday, June 21, 2021

 

Verse of the Day
Monday, June 21, 2021


Psalm 91:1
Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.
Life Principle 12:
Every now and then we do well to take stock of our situation, so I’d like to ask you to look around. What’s happening in your life and in the life of your family?

You may not be experiencing a difficult time. From your perspective, everything may seem sunny and clear. Storms come, however. At times, they roll over our lives with bounding blows. How do we maintain a sense of peace and spiritual balance when trials strike?

The answer is found in a close, abiding relationship with Jesus Christ. The words of Helen Lemmel’s classic hymn, “Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus,” contain a vital and exciting truth: an unshakable peace is available to all who turn the eyes of their hearts to Jesus.

Chances are that when adversity strikes, one of the first things you do is to wonder why. Then you may question what kind of impact it will have on your life. While reactions such as these are normal, we also need another response, and that is to turn to the One who holds all comfort and security firmly within His grasp.

No one, outside of God, is equipped to handle our problems. He never meant for us to be strong on our own. He wants us to find courage and hope and strength in Him and His Word.

Many wonder what they can do to change the feelings of anxiety they feel when they come under pressure. One of the first steps is to recognize anxiety for what it is, the opposite of peace. It is the fan that flames the fires of doubt and confusion and has the ability to leave us helplessly bundled up in worry and fear. When we cave in to thoughts of anxiety, we lose our spiritual focus and mindset. The key to overcoming anxiety is found only in the presence of God.

Paul admonishes us: “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God; and the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 4:6, 7).

Accepting God’s timetable and the limitations He places on a given situation helps to dispel rising anxiety. Therefore, let Him provide for you in His timing. When you accept life as a gift from the hand of God, then you will do what Helen Lemmel’s song says—you will turn your eyes toward Jesus. You will look full into His glorious face and there find mercy and grace, forgiveness and hope, peace and everlasting security.

What would you give to experience the peace of God? Are you willing to lay down the anger that haunts your soul because someone has done something to wound you? God knows the hurt you have experienced. Will you trust Him in quietness, knowing that He has not forgotten you but stands ready to heal you?

God’s peace is unshakable because there has never been a time or an event when God has felt disturbed. His peace and presence are sure. They are immovable. You will accomplish many things—great and mighty—when you keep your focus on God.

At one of the most difficult points in his life, David wrote Psalm 91, which begins: “Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, 'He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.'”

How could David write such words, especially with King Saul trying to kill him? David had a divine, unshakable peace within his heart. He knew this was God’s responsibility and David allowed Him to protect his life.

The safest place for you when trials come is in the everlasting arms of Jesus. After His resurrection, Jesus appeared to His disciples and said to them, “Peace be with you” (John 20:19). This was not a trite greeting; the Lord had a specific point in mind. He spoke of God’s peace, immovable and eternal—the peace you need today.

Does something trouble you? Has a conflict, a sorrow, a situation escalated beyond your control? Hear His word to you: “Peace be with you.”

Let His peace invade your heart. Tell Him all you are feeling. He understands and knows that life can be difficult—but He has a solution. Our peace resides in our Savior, who loves us unconditionally. He has promised to keep us and deliver us into the Father’s loving arms.

The answer is found in a close, abiding relationship with Jesus Christ.

Hear His word to you: “Peace be with you.”


Read all of Psalm 91

Listen to Psalm 91


Scripture from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Life Principle from Charles F. Stanley Life Principles Bible Notes.