Daily People

DailyPeople – January   |   Tim Gill

1. (Gen 1-3) “Adam” Made by the loving and skillful hands of The Almighty, Adam is the first human to live on the earth! What an honor, huh? Besides the gift of life, God gives Adam something sacred and extremely powerful. God gives His first man the freedom of choice. But, it isn’t long before Adam chooses poorly; and, well… you know what happens. Adam reminds you that your choices matter. Like Adam, God gives you the power to choose too. So the choices you make in life are important. Your choices have real consequences. Today, on the first day of a new year, make a promise to God, and to yourself, that you will weigh your choices carefully… and choose wisely!
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2. (Genesis 4-5) “Seth” After the fall in the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve would face unrest and tragedy in their family. For, Cain would kill his brother Abel. But God would bless the first couple on earth with another son. When things appear to be hopeless, God has a way of overcoming evil. His plan will prevail (Proverbs 19:21). Seth is born to fulfill God’s plan. It was through the seed of Seth that Jesus would be born (Genesis 5:3–8, 1 Chronicles 1:1, Luke 3:38). Without Seth, there is no cross!! You, in a way, are similar to Seth. For, you are a link in a long line of people who God uses to fulfill His purpose. You are born to bring glory to God by devoting your life to doing His will. You may not believe this, but losing YOUR link in this human chain would prevent many others from ever knowing God. Today, realize your purpose, and endeavor to fulfill God’s plan.
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3. (Genesis 6-8) “Noah” How much of what God commands would you say you are obeying? Of all the things recorded about Noah in the Bible, one thing stands out: Noah obeyed everything God commanded! When you stop and think about, that’s pretty impressive! For, Noah had never witnessed rain before. He didn’t argue. He didn’t make excuses. He didn’t put it off. Whatever God said to do, Noah obeyed. His obedience to God resulted in saving his life, saving his family, and saving a lot of the world. Obeying God isn’t easy, but it’s the wisest way to live. Obeying God may go against your logic. It will go against your selfishness and fear. But be sure of this: Obedience will bless your life. Will you obey your Lord?
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4. (Gen 10-11) “Terah” Sandwiched in between two faithful men (Noah and Abraham) is Terah. His name means ‘wanderer’. And that’s what he did. He wandered aimlessly from one place to another. And when it came time to pull up stakes and move his family to Ur, Terah stopped short and settled in Haran (Haran means hard place). Why? What would make a man stop short of obeying God and settle for the harsh climate of Haran? No one really knows… but Terah’s reluctance to complete his journey would hold his son back from reaching God’s land. It wouldn’t be until Terah died, that Abraham would leave Haran and reach his destination. Is there something here? It’s possible… for, Terah illustrates how tragic it can be when one generation holds back another because of selfishness. In a way, Terah would settle for less. He would settle for Haran over Canaan. When it comes to your faith, don’t settle for less. Inspire the younger generation that follows you. Be bold – refuse to wander aimlessly – and move ever closer to what God wants. Pass on, to the next generation, the kind of faith that holds up godly values, and accomplishes the will of God.
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5. (Genesis 12-14) “Abraham” Everywhere Abraham goes, he builds an altar to God. It’s the first thing he does. Why? What is Abraham trying to do with these altars? He’s dedicating wherever he works; wherever he rests; wherever he lives… to his God. What a great principle to live by! For, when you dedicate the place where you are to God, great things can happen. Compare Abraham’s approach to his nephew Lot, and you see the difference—Abraham is blessed, while Lot keeps running into serious trouble. Have you dedicated your workplace to God? How about your home? Have you ‘built your altar’ in the place where you are? Today, dedicate your ‘land’ to God… and be blessed!
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6. (Genesis 15-17) “Ishmael” Abraham and Sarah aren’t what you would call pillars of faith in the community. They struggle with trusting God like anyone else. Just read how they respond to God’s promise of a son, and you get the idea. Ishmael is the result of their lack of faith and patience. Yet God will remind Abraham every time he calls out to Ishmael (Ishmael means: God hears) that He still hears his prayers. He heard Abraham’s request to bless Ishmael (17:18). You don’t have to be perfect for God to hear your prayers. He knows you have trouble completely trusting His promises. Your lack of faith in God will lead you to many blunders. These mistakes will remind you, for the rest of your life, that you are human—a sinner. But your blunders can also remind you that God hasn’t given up on you. He still hears you, and intends to fulfill His plan in you.
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7. (Genesis 18-19) “Sarah” She puts her hand over her mouth and starts to giggle… Why? It’s hard for Sarah to imagine she could get pregnant. She thinks to herself, “How could I give birth to a child at 90? What a silly idea!” But God is not laughing. What He is talking about is not silly. He’s serious. That’s because nothing is too hard for God to do. How about you? Are you taking the plans and promises of God seriously, or do you nervously laugh them off as silly nonsense? Do you laugh at yourself and think, “God wants to use a screw up like me? No way!” Or, “God can/will ultimately work things out for His good? Not in my situation!” Or, “God can turn anything around? It’s too late for me!” It’s time you believe in God’s power. It’s time you expect Him to act. It’s time you trust The Lord. Sarah would laugh again, but this time she would giggle because of the intense joy she feels holding her baby. Today, expect God to make His promises good. Laugh out loud and rejoice… because God is able!
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8. (Genesis 20-21) “Abimelek” Abraham is afraid… Abraham is intimidated… Abraham is selfish! To save his own skin, he lies about his wife. He leads Abimelek to believe Sarah is his sister! But eventually Abraham is busted out, and Abimelek knows the truth. Abraham looks like a fool. Who is like Abimelek in your life? You know, the one who intimidates you enough to compromise your ethics. Who is it that frightens you enough to abandon your godly values to save face? Don’t you realize that they will eventually figure it out… and you will look like a fool? Today, be a person of integrity, and refuse to be intimidated by the ‘Abimeleks’ in your life! Trust The Lord, and stand tall on your faith! When you do, you will find that a life of integrity is rewarding.
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9. (Gen 22-23) “Isaac” He helps carry the gear up the mountain. Little does he know, that he is the sacrifice. But when his dad begins to tie him up, Isaac realizes what is about to happen to him. He realizes something else. He sees how much his dad loves God. Have you ever wondered if Isaac put up a fight? Did Isaac start to cry and argue with his dad about what he was going to do? It doesn’t look that way. Why does Isaac silently stand there and let his dad do such a thing? Isaac trusts his dad… Better yet, Isaac trusts His God! What happens? God comes through! God provides a sacrifice. In that very moment, the faith of a father and son are galvanized. As they head down the mountain for home, their faith is a little stronger. How about you? What will happen when your faith is tested? Will you trust God when you face what appears to be the impossible? Will you trust God enough to not put up a fight when he calls you to sacrifice? Today, meet your difficulties with a confident hope… that God will provide!
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10. (Genesis 24) “Rebekah” She is beautiful. She is also an answer to prayer! But the thing that stands out about Rebekah the most, is her awareness of God working in her life. She doesn’t seem to believe in coincidences or luck. She’s not forcing opportunities either. She simply believes and trusts that God is working in her life. She believes her destiny is in God’s hands. So she doesn’t hesitate to walk through the doors she believes God opens. How do you see your future? Are you the kind of person who thinks you have to make your own destiny, or do you leave this up to God? Are you able to recognize when God opens a door? And when He opens a door of opportunity for you, do you walk through it? What will you do if He closes a door? Will you continue to trust him? Today, keep your eyes peeled for the opportunities God gives you… and make the most of them!
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11. (Genesis 25-26:33) “Esau” He is an outdoorsman, and the older son. He is strong and fierce. Many would say Esau is the kind of guy who can take care of himself. But he does something really dumb—he throws it all away! Because he’s the firstborn, Esau will get two thirds of his father’s wealth. But, he trades it all away! And for what? A bowl of soup!! Are you kidding me? What was Esau thinking? He let his appetite get the better of him. Oh, how often this happens to followers of Christ. God gives one the gift of salvation and countless blessings on earth. But an ‘Esau Theology’ trades it for a career, a carnal pleasure, a little power, or a few more bucks. Esau would rob himself of greater blessings later because he wanted immediate satisfaction. How about you? Are you trading what God has given you for something less, or will you resist your temptations, and experience even greater blessings than ever? Today, stand firm in your faith. Resist the carnal… and keep trusting God to give you the best!
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12. (Genesis 26:34 – 28:22) “Jacob” Jacob is one of those characters in the Bible who many have a difficult time understanding; and he’s not what you would call a man of great character either. With shrewd tenacity, Jacob manages to take his brother’s birthright. He also deceives his father to get the blessing reserved for the first born. It kind of makes you shake your head, doesn’t it? But Jacob would slowly change; for, God had big plans for him. God would work on Jacob’s heart and make him into a man of great faith. Jacob illustrates, though it may appear impossible, that God has the power to change anyone! Who do you think is nearly impossible to change? Just remember God can change anyone!
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13. (Genesis 29-30) “Leah” Leah is the older sister… and she’s plain. Her younger sister (Rachel) is gorgeous with sparkling eyes. Though Jacob loves Rachel more, God deeply loves Leah. He blesses Leah with 6 sons and one daughter. One of the sons she gives birth to is Judah. Jesus would, in fact, come from the line of Judah! If you think you have to have the right look to get the most in life, you’d be wrong. Appearance and charisma have little to do with how much God can use you. He looks at your heart; and your life is blessed because of His love. Today, open your heart to God and let Him use you.
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14. (Genesis 31-33) “Laban” Let’s face it… Laban is a shyster! He is constantly cheating Jacob in some way. He is constantly reneging on his promises and agreements with Jacob. So when Jacob finally gets the better of Laban, it’s easy to chuckle to yourself. After all, Laban gets a taste of his own medicine. He gets what he deserves. You can’t cheat someone and expect to get away with it. God has a way of settling the score with people who cheat others. It’s important that you, too, treat others fairly and with integrity. Have you cheated anyone? Do you need to make it right? Today, resist the temptation to take advantage of others. Make a commitment to be fair and honest with people.
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15. (Genesis 34-35) “Dinah” Jacob’s daughter is about 15 years old. She has always been adventurous and a little independent. Without an escort, Dinah ventures off to what appears to be an innocent party. But before the evening is over, she is raped by a spoiled and selfish upper class pagan named Shechem. Soon after this honorific incident, anger, vengeance, and greed are followed by deceit, murder, and theft. Jacob and his family have to flee the country! It’s amazing how a little careless decision can lead to such great tragedy! You take your eye off the road for just a few seconds… and you end up in the ER. Think… think… THINK! Dinah teaches you to think long and hard before you choose. For the choices you make in life will choose the life you live. Today, choose wisely.
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16. (Genesis 36) “Zepho” Who in the world is this guy? All we know about this man is that he is the grandson of Esau. In fact, we know next to nothing about any of Esau’s descendants listed in this chapter. So why are they here? They are listed to remind you that God cares about everyone! Though Esau and his family would make countless mistakes, God would fulfill His promise to Esau, and bless them. Hmmm… People may escape your notice, but they are noticed by God. He loves them and wants to bless them. You may think you are hidden in obscurity, but God notices you. He sees you and wants to bless you too. But today, notice all the people around you. Appreciate God’s love for the strangers you meet. In some way, extend a gesture of respect and kindness to the ‘Zephos’ you meet.
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17. (Genesis 38) “Tamar” What a strange chapter. Jacob and his sons lived near strong pagan influence. In this chapter you will find deceit and immorality somehow justified. For, Judah would intermarry with the Canaanites and have 3 sons. Er was his firstborn, and Tamar was Er’s wife. But Er was wicked, and God struck him dead. Onan, Judah’s second son, would refuse to provide a son for Tamar. He would die too. With the third son, too young to marry, Tamar takes matters into her own hands. She tricks her father-in-law into sleeping with her, and she becomes pregnant. This is important because Jesus (The Lion of Judah) would later come through the family line of Tamar. Tamar teaches that God uses flawed people to get His will done. It doesn’t matter what you’ve done; God can use you to accomplish His will. This doesn’t justify your sin; it only explains how merciful God can be. Today, don’t allow your guilt, or shame of the things you have done, to prevent God from using you. Turn to Him, and find his mercy. Trust his love… and find your purpose.
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18. (Genesis 39-41) “Joseph” He’s one of the greatest characters found in the Bible. Mistreated by his brothers, Joseph is carried far away to a foreign land. Though life continues to be unfair to Joseph, he knows God is with him. So Joseph refuses to blame God for his circumstances. With confidence in the wisdom of God, Joseph would take personal responsibility for his actions and be faithful to his God. This pays off in the long run. For God rewards Joseph’s faithfulness. He becomes 2nd in command in Egypt! God doesn’t promise that life will be easy for you. He doesn’t promise that everything in life will go your way. He DOES promise to reward your faithfulness! So, what will you do when life is unfair to you? Will you whine and complain… or will you trust your God?
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19. (Genesis 42-45:15) “Reuben” He is the oldest of all the children of Jacob. But Reuben blew it as an older brother. Instead of standing up and protecting Joseph when all his brothers wanted rid of him, Reuben would be silent. Maybe that’s why Jacob didn’t take his promise seriously. If Reuben couldn’t be trusted with his brother, how could he be trusted with his own sons? Jacob blamed Reuben for losing Joseph in the first place. Reuben probably regretted his silence for a long time. How about you? As an older brother or sister in Christ, are you looking out for the younger brothers and sisters around you? Are you speaking up, or are you being silent. If you are looking the other way, you will regret it for the rest of your life. Today, stand up… stand beside your brothers and sisters. Speak up when they are threatened. Stand strong, and protect them.
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20. (Genesis 45:16-47:28) “Manasseh and Ephraim” The names of Joseph’s two sons carry special meaning for the Prince of Egypt. Manasseh means “Forget”, and Ephraim means “Blessed”. This is exactly what God did for Joseph. God blessed Joseph with so much, that he would forget all the trouble his brothers had caused. Joseph could rejoice and appreciate how good The Lord had been to him. God is good to you too. And when you start counting all your blessings, God will help you put your pain in perspective. You may even forget YOUR troubles too. Why not try it? Take a few minutes and list as many of God’s blessings as you can.
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21. (Genesis 47:29-50:26) “Benjamin” As Jacob blesses each of his sons, he finally gets to the youngest — Benjamin. Benjamin would be one of the smallest tribes of Israel. But don’t let the size of this tribe fool you. For, Benjamin is compared to a wolf. You see this ferocious nature come out of this tribe in men like Ehud (The left-handed judge), and Saul (The first King of Israel). But the greatest example of all is found in the apostle Paul. Born a Benjamite, Paul would turn the world upside down with the gospel. Size doesn’t matter to God. You can be the puniest runt in the bunch, and God can still do mighty things through you. That’s because it’s His power that does it all. Today, ask God for His power to be unleashed in your life. Trust Him to supply what you need to make a powerful difference wherever you go.
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22. (Exodus 1-4, 6:14-27) “Moses” Early on it was obvious that God was with Moses. God worked things together so his life would be saved. He was even raised in the opulence of Pharaoh’s palace! Just imagine his mother telling him stories of how The Lord protected him while floating in a basket on the Nile with all those hungry crocodiles! So when God called Moses to deliver his people, you’d think he would jump at the opportunity; but Moses is reluctant to trust God. When God calls, Moses digs in his heels, and begins to make one excuse after another. Though God shows him sign after sign, Moses still drags his feet!! Thank God Aaron was there to help him out. How about you? Are you making excuses? When asked to serve, do you begin to list your reasons for not being able to do it? Today, quit making excuses! Obey God’s call. He has been with you in the past, and He IS with you right now! And, like with Moses, God will help you get the job done!
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23. (Exodus 5-6:13, 7:1-8:32 ) “Aaron” What would Moses have accomplished without Aaron by his side? Moses would have thrown-in the towel if Aaron hadn’t been there by his side. Yes, God could have done great things through Moses without Aaron at all, but he didn’t. He put Aaron with Moses for good reason. You see, no man is an island. He needs people. God made human beings for relationships. With key people, one can accomplish more (Ecc. 4). For there IS strength in numbers. Who needs you to be an Aaron in their life this very minute? Who could use your encouragement? God can use you to tip the scales of success in their favor. So, give them a call… shoot them a text… go by and encourage your friend face to face. Let God use you to support and help someone face the difficulties of life with confidence and hope.
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24. (Exodus 9-11) “Pharaoh” You have to admit, he is one stubborn guy! 9 of 10 plagues come upon Egypt. Yet Pharaoh refuses to humble himself and submit to God. Now, you may think it was God who hardened Pharaoh’s heart. If you believe this, you are right. But just remember that Pharaoh had already hardened his heart a couple of times on his own (8:15, 32). What God was doing was simply completing what Pharaoh had already started. By the way, Pharaoh finally caved and let the people of God leave Egypt. Can God harden hearts today? There’s no reason to think He won’t. If you persist in stubbornness, God will see to it that you stay that way. Kinda scary, isn’t it? Are you humble? Are you listening and surrendering to God? Today, learn a lesson from Pharaoh: It doesn’t pay to be stubborn with God.
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25. (Exodus 13) “The First Born” It was the plague of all plagues. Try to imagine the horror as all the firstborn in Egypt begin to suddenly die. Pharaoh’s son dies too, and it’s more than he can bear. Devastated, Pharaoh tells Moses and the rest of the Israelites to leave Egypt immediately. As Moses is leaving, God tells him to set apart the firstborn of the flocks and the families of Israel. He has an idea how He can use them. The firstborn lambs and bulls are to be sacrificed. But the firstborn children are to be a living reminder of their deliverance, and that they are set apart for holy service. Hmmm… Wasn’t Jesus firstborn? Sure He was. He was sacrificed (like a firstborn lamb) for you! He also was the first to rise from the dead! He opened the way for others to follow. Jesus reminds you that you are special to God. This means that, as a Christian, you are set apart to live in holiness like Jesus too (Rom 8:29). The Firstborn also gives you great confidence when you face your death; because He paved the way from the grave to your God (Col 1:18), and into eternity!
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26. (Exodus 13:17-15:21) “Miriam” What an incredible display of the power of God! At first, things look hopeless. Israel shakes with fear at the sight of Egypt’s army; but all of a sudden, the entire Egyptian army is wiped out before their very eyes! But, they didn’t do it… God did!!! God is amazing! As the winds and the waves start to die down, you can hear Miriam start to sing. She starts praising God for His love, His power, and His awesome deeds! Do you ever break out in song, praising your God for His love? His power? His salvation? His awesome deeds? Are you ever moved with your gratitude to give God the glory with a song? God is your deliverer. Isn’t He awesome? Praise Him today!
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27. (Exodus 17) “Hur” Moses is tired. As his arms begin to fall, Joshua starts to lose the battle with the Amalekites. Suddenly a man runs to Moses’ side. Hur takes one of his arms while Aaron takes the other, lifting them up to the sky. The tide of the battle turns. Joshua is victorious! Let’s face it, being a leader in God’s kingdom isn’t easy. Your leaders are just as human as you, and they can become weary. When they do, they need you to step up and give them support!! Who needs your support right now? Today, be encouraged by Hur’s example. Make God’s kingdom stronger. Pray, protect, encourage, and support your leaders.
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28. (Exodus 19-20, 23:20-24:18) “God’s People” God dearly loves them. He leads them out of Egyptian bondage. He saves them through a path in the sea. God brings His people His word. They are to be a kingdom of priests… a holy nation. At Sinai, God makes them a promise: If they will obey Him, He will bless them and give them the land; but if they rebel, they will perish. What do the people do? They pledge their allegiance to God, and promise to always follow Him. That’s all God wants from you. He wants you to pledge your allegiance to Him. He promises to bless you when you dedicate your life to Him. He plans to use you in a special way. He plans to use you to reach more people. Can God use you today?
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29. (Exodus 25-28) “Skilled Workers” The list of items for the Tabernacle is very long. This list includes ropes and cords, jewelry, clothes of fine linen, and articles of gold and silver. Since there is no place to purchase these items, they must be handmade. Just think of the great skill required to make such a host of sacred things. And the skills were there! God’s people had the abilities. What skills do you have? Are you using them for The Lord? Where can you use your skills to advance God’s Kingdom? Whatever skills you have, try using them to bring glory to God.
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30. (Exodus 31) “Bezalel” He is singled-out from among the Israelites. This is not uncommon in the Bible. For, God frequently called people by name (e.g., Moses, Samuel, Saul of Tarsus) when He had a special job to be done. Like Jesus, Bezalel is from the tribe of Judah. He was born dedicated to The Lord because his name means “In the shadow of God”. So when God is speaking to Moses about the construction of the Tabernacle, Bezalel is called and placed in charge of the project. Has God called you to do a job? Has He called you to build a godly family? Has He singled you out to build a ministry? Is the Lion of Judah (Jesus) counting on you to build His church? Like Bezalel, draw closer into the shadow of God… and you will succeed!
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31. (Exodus 32-34) “Aaron” Moses has been on Mt. Sinai for several days talking with God. The people grow impatient. They demand that Aaron choose them a new god. What does Aaron do? He gives them a golden calf. Then things begin to go sideways. The people are out of control. Why? Israel has abandoned their promise to God. God is furious! Moses is so upset, he throws the Ten Commandments to the ground. This is what happens when you cave-in and compromise. For, Aaron needed to step up and lead. But by compromising his convictions, the people of God would drift away from their spiritual moorings. Whenever you compromise your convictions, you can expect things to go down the tubes. God needs someone to stand up and stand firm in their faith. He needs you to do this in your home, workplace, your church, and community. Today, resist the urge to cave-in to worldly pressures, and stand firm on your convictions.
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DailyPeople – Febuary   |   Tim Gill

1. (Exodus 35:4-38:31) “Oholiab” He is mentioned only 7 times in the Bible. All the references are found in the book of Exodus. It’s also interesting that the man appointed by God, to help build the Tabernacle, bears a name that means ‘Father’s Tent’. For, Oholiab would dedicate his life to building a special place where God would dwell among His people. How dedicated are you about building a special place where people can come to God? How much are you trying to build a great church in your community? Don’t you think God wants a great place for people to come to Him? Today, make a commitment to God that you will use your talents and resources to build up His church. Today, allow God to use you to make His church a special place!
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2. (Exodus 39-40) “The Israelites” Everyone is pitching-in to build the Tabernacle and all its furnishings until it’s finally complete. It’s amazing what can be done when everyone does their part. 1 Peter 2:5 says you and everyone else in God’s Kingdom are ‘living stones’ fitted together to build a ‘spiritual house’ filled with priests (servants) that offer acceptable sacrifices. You are a part of something much bigger than yourself. When you do your part, you make God’s Kingdom better. Today, think about how you can do your part to make your church a special place that brings God and people together.
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3. (Lev 10) “Nadab & Abihu” They are carried out of the Tabernacle by their two brothers. You can smell the mixture of charred clothing and flesh. Nadab and Abihu are dead! Why? In their carelessness, they offer something unauthorized. This may not seem to be such a big deal to you. After all, fire is fire, right? WRONG!! Disregarding what God wants can be a fatal blunder. For, Nadab and Abihu did not take God seriously. How serious would you say you are taking God? How important is it for you to please God? Are you devoted to God’s word? Today, decide you are going to obey God, no matter what! For, God says what He means, and means what He says!
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4. (Numbers 7) “Nahshon” He represents the rest of his tribe (Judah). Nahshon is first in line to bring offerings for the dedication of the altar. What does he bring? Lots of gold and silver, along with grain and incense. He brings bulls, rams, sheep, and goats to be sacrificed to God. As Nahshon does his part, eleven others will follow. It’s interesting that, generations later, a member from the tribe of Judah would lead the way to sacrifice. Jesus would be first in line to lay down His life for you. He’s hoping you will follow in his steps and be a living sacrifice today. Will you?
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5. (Numbers 9:1-12, 1:1-2:34) “Levi” Out of all the tribes of Israel, the tribe of Levi is singled out for a special responsibility. They are to take care of the tabernacle—the place where God dwelled among the people. The Levites were the priestly tribe. Moses and Aaron were Levites too. In a way, you share the responsibility of the Levites. For, you are a ‘priest’. Look what Peter says: “But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His wonderful light.”(1 Peter 2:9). As a priest, you have a special responsibility. God is counting on you to declare Him to the world. Today, let this purpose shape how you speak and treat others.
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6. (Numbers 3:14-4:49) “Eleazar” As preparations for setting up, tearing down, and transporting the Tabernacle are under way, God delegates this responsibility to 3 groups of Levites. God selects the Gershonites, Merarites, and Kohathites with Eleazar overseeing all operations. Eleazar was one of the sons of Aaron. With Nadab and Abihu out of the picture, Eleazar was next in line for the job. This was a huge responsibility. For, Eleazar, (who was a very young man), had to make sure all the articles were adequately prepared to be used for worship, as well as preparing the tabernacle to be transported properly. In a way, YOU are involved in some kind of preparation. Whether it’s in your workplace, home, or church, you can prepare these places for God’s presence. You can help make them places of worship. You do this by promoting Christ, and lifting up God in a way that creates a spiritual environment. Today, be a catalyst that promotes a godly atmosphere.
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7. (Number 11) “Eldad and Medad” They are only mentioned once in the Bible. All we know about these two, is they were called to special service in God’s Kingdom. But Eldad and Medad failed to be present at the Tabernacle when they were supposed to. They weren’t in the cloud of God like the others. Where were these two? They were at home when Moses laid his hands on the rest. Yet, these two were filled with God’s Holy Spirit, just as the others, and began to prophecy. Hmmm… You don’t have to jump through all the hoops to be used by God. Service in God’s Kingdom is not restricted to the ‘professionals’ or to those with ‘degrees’. His work extends to anyone He chooses. He works through those He has called to serve. God wants to use you too. Today, remember your calling. Look for the opportunities when God’s Spirit nudges you to serve… and do it!
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8. (Numbers 12) “Miriam” Have you been complaining about your leaders? Are you critical of those in authority? Miriam and Aaron start to criticize and complain about Moses. It’s a bad move!! For, God overhears them, and is not happy. He strikes Miriam with leprosy! Yikes!! Let’s face it, leaders are easy to criticize. That’s because they aren’t perfect. Their flaws are easy to spot because they are human just like you, and criticizing them doesn’t accomplish anything good. Maybe that’s why God takes a critical attitude toward leaders so seriously. The next time you feel the urge to point out a flaw in one of your leaders, just remember… there are 3 fingers pointing back at you! Remember that your leaders are not perfect. They fall short, just like you. Today, learn a lesson from Miriam and try to appreciate the leaders around you. Today, resist the temptation to complain about them.
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9. (Numbers 16-18) “Korah” Most people believe that grumbling and complaining about God’s leaders is nothing more than harmless banter. They couldn’t be further from the truth!! No matter how hard you try to justify your attack, it’s still sinful to do… period!! Korah’s rebellion is a warning to those who show disrespect to people in authority, and oppose God’s leaders. The New Testament teaches that you must bring 2 or 3 witnesses with you when you have an accusation against an elder in the church (1 Tim 5:19-20). Are you grumbling against godly leaders? Are you opposing the people God has placed in authority? Today, think carefully before you criticize others… especially your leaders. Today, guard your heart against a critical attitude, and choose to support the men and women God puts in front of you to follow.
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10. (Numbers 20-21; 33) “Inhabitants” If you think the Promised Land was uninhabited, you’d be wrong. Strong nations lived in the land long before Israel arrived. These nations were totally pagan, and the people were ruthless. You may find it difficult to understand that God commanded His people to rid the land of these godless people. But God also added a warning: If they failed to rid the land of these vermin, and began to live among them, they’d lose everything! You live in a world filled with ‘inhabitants’. It doesn’t take you long to notice godless influence and evil values all around you. While you live in the world, it’s important to keep yourself from becoming like the world (Rom 12:1-3). Compromise on this principle, and you will lose everything! How much would you say the world is rubbing off on you? How hard are you resisting the influence of this broken world? Today, change this world! Keep your focus on Jesus as much as possible, and avoid being polluted by this world.
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11. (Numbers 22-24) “Balaam” He owns a talking donkey! But the thing that really stands out about Balaam is his commitment to say only what God tells him to say. No matter what he’s offered, Balaam refuses to curse Israel. All he is willing to do is bless God’s people. This infuriates King Balak! Try to imagine the discipline it takes to stick to your guns and do such a thing. It’s not only impressive, it’s challenging too! Do you think you can do that? What do you think would happen if you made it your goal to curb your conversation in a way that would please God? How would godly dialogue improve your relationships? Today, closely watch what you say. Choose the best words you can. Choose the kind of words that would please God.
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12. (Numbers 25, 31) “Zimri” After wandering in the wilderness for years, Israel would find itself around the influence of the pagan world for the first time. It was a serious moment for God’s people. For, Israel faced a greater threat than a curse from Balaam. This threat had to do with Israel’s confidence in God’s commands. You see, if Israel starts second-guessing God’s word, they are doomed! This is what Zimri is doing when he takes a pagan woman for his wife, and worships her god. He is doubting the source of the high moral code set before him. Zimri believes the commands of God are really from Moses, not heaven. That’s why Moses had to do something. If this is not addressed, Zimri’s rebellion would spread throughout Israel. By the way, as you read the O.T., you learn that this is the Achilles Heel of God’s people. This can be yours too. Your faith… your confidence… your trust in God’s word is crucial if you are going to make it to the Promised Land. Are you quick to blow off a godly challenge as nothing more than a mere opinion? How confident are you in the commands of God? Is there a command you are ignoring?
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13. (Numbers 26) “Joshua and Caleb” Out of all the adults who left Egypt, there are only two left when it’s time to enter the Promised Land. Joshua and Caleb have survived 40 years of wandering. Why are they still standing? In a nutshell, you could say it’s their faithfulness and their friendship. They simply kept trusting God. They supported each other too! It goes to show you that it isn’t easy following God for a lifetime; it takes courage and determination. Most of all, it takes a growing faith that is nurtured and cared for personally and through godly friends. What are you doing to ensure that you will still be trusting and following God when it’s time to enter your Promised Land?
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14. (Numbers 32) “The Reubenites and Gadites” Just before Israel is to cross the Jordan, another ‘hiccup’ occurs. The Reubenites and Gadites want to stay on the east side of the Jordan. They like the land they are already in, and ask Moses if it would be okay to settle in Gilead instead of crossing over with the rest of Israel. Moses is furious! Why? The Reubenites and the Gadites are being selfish! They are content with the advantages of temporal gain over God’s way for their lives. Besides, they will break their promise to help Israel conquer Canaan by sending only half of their army. This selfish act would weaken Israel’s ability to conquer Canaan and lead to a tragic downfall. Their reluctance to help would also come back to bite them too; for, the tribes of Reuben, Gad, and the half-tribe of Manasseh, would be the first to fall to Assyria and go into captivity! When you seek your own interests over God’s, you are sure to fall short of reaching what God promises. Have you sold out? Have you settled for less? Are you content with having what you want now, over what God wants you to have in the future? Today, trust God with everything! For, when you do, you will receive your full reward.
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15. (Deuteronomy 1) “Sons” Deuteronomy is a review of the history of Israel. It was written to remind the children of the wilderness wanderings that God was with them. This book would remind Israel that God carries them like a father carrying his own son. This is a powerful image: God loved Israel like a father loves his son. God provided, and guided them. He also disciplined them for their own good. Things haven’t changed. For, God loves you like a son too. In His deep love, He protects and directs; guides and provides; giving you all you need as you journey through life. You benefit the most when you obey Him like a good son obeys his dad. Today, be grateful that your Heavenly Father cares deeply about you. Appreciate the fatherly love He has toward you. Like a good son, try to please Him.
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16. (Deuteronomy 4:44-8:20) “The Egyptians” Moses recalls the long journey of God’s people, and urges Israel to stay humble before The Lord. Why? He is afraid, as they are blessed, they will eventually grow arrogant and forget The Lord. So he warns them of losing their appreciation of God’s goodness, and encourages them to remember the horrible life they had with the Egyptians. Every once in a while, it does you good to consider what your life would be like today if it weren’t for your Lord. It does you good to remember what life was like with your ‘Egyptians’! Your ‘Egyptians’ may include the people in your past. Your ‘Egyptians’ can also be an old habit or an old way of life. Your ‘Egyptians’ can represent an empty and meaningless life. Your ‘Egyptians’ can represent how difficult life was before God came into the picture. Soooooo… how ‘bout it? Do you appreciate how far God has brought you? Do you ever wonder what your life would be like without Jesus? It’s worth some consideration. As God blesses your life, never forget what He has brought you out of. Always appreciate the goodness of God in your life… and count your blessings!
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17. (Deuteronomy 9) “The Anakites” They were giants compared to most people. The Anakites were a powerful nation, and they stood in the way of Israel getting the Promised Land. What is Israel to do? All they could do was rely on the power of their God. For, God promised that He would drive the Anakites out of the land. What stands in your way? What are the giants that frighten you and keep you from getting to what God has planned for you? Whatever represents your giant, remember to keep trusting in The Lord!! For, God promises to get rid of any person or situation that gets in your way. Today, trust God!! Trust that God will fight for you! Believe God will supply you with everything you need. He will help you overcome whatever you are facing… and ultimately give victory!
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18. (Deuteronomy 14:2) “Treasured Possession” Why all the rules? Why is the bar set so high for Israel? It’s because they are God’s treasured possession. There is NO one else on the earth that God loves and cherishes more than His children. Like any father, He expects and wants the best of his sons and daughters. Think about it…how much would God love Israel, if He let them do whatever they wanted? It would be a disaster!! Their recklessness would ruin their lives! You are God’s treasured possession! You, like everyone else, were full of recklessness and sin. In a way, you were stolen from God. You were taken from God. So God used all His resources to get you back! It cost God everything! But to Him, it was worth it; because you are His treasured possession! So when He asks you to obey Him, is it too much to ask? If He went to the trouble of buying you back with His own son, shouldn’t you honor His love with a life dedicated to Him?
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19. (Deuteronomy 18:9-14; Exodus 22:18; Leviticus 20:27; Deuteronomy 13:1-5, 18:15-22) “The Prophet” People can be gullible! If you’re not careful, you can be led away from God. So who you listen to for spiritual counsel matters! For, not everyone who claims to be following God really is. That’s why God is very specific with Israel about listening to “prophets”. God wants you to make sure that you will always be following His will. That’s why you must not ‘worship’ a person. Bible teachers today are as human as you are. They can never be a substitute for your own quest and search of godly convictions. So how do you know if the people you are listening to are legit? You have to test what they say against God’s word (Acts 17:11). You must look closely at their lives. Jesus said look at their fruit (Matt 7:18, 20). In short, are those you listen to becoming more and more like Jesus? If so, they are a tremendous blessing in your life. If not, they will eventually lead you away from God. So…who are you listening to?
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20. (Exodus 23:14-17; Deuteronomy 16:1-17; Exodus 34:24; Numbers 9:13-14; Leviticus 23:4-44; Numbers 28:18-31, 29:1-6; Leviticus 16:1-34, 29:12-38) “The Offerer” As you read today’s passages, you can’t help but notice all the different kinds of offerings. God is clear: No one is to come before The Lord empty handed. The principle behind these Old Testament teachings is that God wants His people to bring Him something. This is a great principle to live by. For, it’s important that when you come to God, you don’t come to Him empty-handed. You try to offer Him something each day. “Like what?” Well, how about your love? What about dedicating your time? Why not bring to God your worries and sorrows? He will take them! You can offer Him your pride or selfishness; or better yet, you can offer yourself as a living sacrifice (Rom 12:1-2). All that matters is that you bring Him something from yourself. What will you bring to The Lord today?
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21. (Leviticus 6:8-23) “The Fireman” Normally when you think of a fireman, you imagine a man working vigorously to put out a fire. But here in Leviticus, these men are in charge of the fire for the burnt offering. They were to make sure the fire continued to burn all night! Hmmm… Like everything in the Old Testament, there is some spiritual imagery here—a spiritual truth to consider. For, you are to keep the fires of sacrifice burning in your heart. You must never let God’s fire die out in your life. You protect it from anything (sin) that will snuff it out. You keep it burning by fueling your faith with God’s word and stoking it with lots of prayer. You fan your flame with worship. How is God’s fire burning in you? Is it a lingering flicker, or is it ablaze with love? Today, do the kinds of things that will keep God’s fire burning in your heart!
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22. (Leviticus 3:1-17, 7:1-38, 17:1-7, 4:1-5:19, 6:1-30; Numbers 15:29-31) “The Sinner” If you take the time to read today’s passages, you are going to notice something: Everyone sins! It doesn’t matter who you are, what you do, or where you live, everyone blows it. But this is not the main point in today’s passages. The main point is this: Everyone needs forgiveness! As you read these passages, do you notice all the different kinds of sacrifices? There are bulls and goats, sheep and grain; all being offered for atonement. There is much sacrifice for man’s sin. All these sacrifices point to one great sacrifice for all mankind… that means for you too! For, Jesus is THE sacrifice for your sin. Today, appreciate the greatest sacrifice of all.
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23. (Leviticus 5:14-19) “The Ignorant” Have you ever broken a law you were not aware of? Maybe you burned your leaves on the wrong day and violated a city ordinance. Maybe you made an innocent mistake on your taxes. Maybe you made a passing comment that deeply hurt a friend or colleague. Do these violations, as innocent as they are, make you guilty? According to God, they do. This is not unfair or unjust, but a sobering reminder that no one is perfect. Everyone sins, whether intentionally or unintentionally; and it’s important to know that these unintentional sins can have the same consequences as those done on purpose. This passage encourages you to take ownership of your violations, and make restitution. The passage today also lets you know that God provides mercy and atonement for ALL sin. Praise God! Today, take inventory of your recent words and actions. Have you innocently said or done something that violated God’s will? Have you broken one of His laws without knowing it? If so, look to God for His mercy, and go make it right.
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24. (Leviticus 21-22, 25) “The Priest” Have you ever thought of yourself as a priest? It may, at first, sound silly; but you should see yourself this way! As a believer and follower of God, you are called His priest (1 Peter 2:9). That’s why passages like the ones today, in your Daily Bible, should get your attention. Of course, you are not a Jewish priest; but it’s important to live in the holiness and service of your priesthood. Like a priest, God calls you to live a sacred lifestyle. He calls you to be His servant. How are you serving God? Are you keeping yourself pure and holy? Are you living in a way that honors God’s name? Today, take up your role as a priest in God’s Kingdom… and serve The Lord!
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25. (Leviticus 12:1-8, 14:1-32, 15:13-15, 28-30; Numbers 19:1-22)
The Unclean” Let’s admit it. The world is a dirty place, and everyone gets dirty. You can’t live a single minute without picking up some kind of filth. It makes you wonder why God made the world this way in the first place. Could it be that human beings need to be reminded of their need to be cleansed? It’s possible. Just read today’s passages and you get the impression that cleanliness matters to God so much that He incorporated specific laws to address filth. Maybe cleanliness IS next to godliness! By the way, these laws were unique to Israel. No other culture observed these cleansing practices; and they protected the Jews from all kinds of disease for generations. Now, Old Testament passages have a New Testament message. What these passages tell you is that God wants you clean. He doesn’t just want you clean on the outside, He wants you clean on the inside too. That’s what the cross was all about. Amen?!
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26. (Deuteronomy 23:1) “The Eunuch” He cannot enter the assembly of God’s people. He can only watch from a distance. Why? No one really knows. It could be that Eunuchs were used in pagan rituals and therefore considered ‘unclean’. What’s interesting is that this restriction didn’t last forever. For, God promised He would give Eunuchs a name that would ensure they would never be cut off from His presence ever again (Isaiah 56:6). This is confirmed in Acts 8 as a Eunuch from Ethiopia is reading this promise, and meets Philip. Redemption is not a matter of luck, but of love. God’s promise, to love you, is as powerful today as it was on a desert road between Jerusalem and Gaza 2000 years ago. Today, praise your God for the love and mercy He gives to Eunuchs… and to you!
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27. (Deuteronomy 17:14-20) “The Leader” Though Old Testament law is no longer in effect, the principles of good leadership are timeless. You want your leaders to be men and women of good character. You want leaders of your church, courts, and country to be godly. Here in today’s passage, God gives good guidelines for leadership. A good leader will not use their position for personal gain. A good leader is fair and focused in justice. A good leader respects the word of God. Otherwise, you end up with a ‘circus’. Today, pray for your leaders! Pray for your city, state, and country. Pray that your leaders serve with integrity, and honor God’s word!
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28.
(Deuteronomy 5:17, 19; Exodus 21:12-25; Numbers 35:9-32;
Exodus 22:1-4; Deuteronomy 19:1-14, 24:7, 22:25-29, 25:11-12)
The Innocent Offender” What do you do when you’ve made an honest mistake? You didn’t do it on purpose; it was an accident. But whether it’s unintentional or not, the damage has been done. What do you do? You need a place of refuge—a safe haven where you can go and find mercy and justice. This was the purpose for the Cities of Refuge. These cities were scattered throughout Israel to provide a place for those who committed a crime accidentally. Today, you have a place to go when you’ve blown it. It’s not a city, it’s a savior! It’s Jesus! He understands when you do something bad without thinking. He understands the difference between premeditated and accidental. His church provides grace and mercy to those who blow it. Do you need a place of refuge? In light of what Christ has done for you, will you, in turn, be a place of refuge for other sinners?
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DailyPeople – March   |   Tim Gill

1. (Deuteronomy 15:12-18, Ex 21:1-11) “The Servant” After years of service, he is free to go; but he can’t bring himself to leave. He wants to stay. Why? His master has been good to him. So his master takes him over to a doorpost and pushes an awl through his servant’s ear. This gesture makes him a servant for the rest of his life! You serve a wonderful master too. With love, He’s been good to you as well. He gladly laid down His life for you. As you think about this today, let God’s love motivate you to stay at His side. Yearn to have your ear pierced by your master… and serve Him the rest of your life!
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2. (Deuteronomy 21:10-14; Deuteronomy 24:1-5; Deuteronomy 22:13-21; Leviticus 18:1-5; Deuteronomy 5:18; Leviticus 18:20; Deuteronomy 22:23-24; Leviticus 19:20-22; Numbers 5:11-31; Leviticus 19:29; Deuteronomy 23:17-18; Leviticus 18:6-8; Leviticus 20:11; Leviticus 18:9, 11; Leviticus 20:17 Leviticus 18:10, 12-14, 20:19-20, 18:15, 20:12, 18:16, 20:20-21, 18:17, 20:14, 18:18-19, 20:18, 18:22, 20:13, 18:23, 20:15-16, 18:24-30, 20:24; Deuteronomy 22:5)
The Pure” Whew! What a long list of verses. If you take the time to read these, you can’t help but notice that God deeply cares about your sexual purity. He wants you to respect and honor the sanctity of marriage. He wants His people to be faithful to their spouses. How about you? What is your stand on sexual purity? How close do you get to ‘The Line’? Today, make a vow of purity to God. Decide to avoid sexual impurity… and honor God with your body.
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3. (Lev 14-15) “The Filthy” It doesn’t take much to get messy; and life can be pretty filthy. But God lays out a way to be clean again. It involves Blood and Water? Hmmm… it still does, doesn’t it? For, God sent His son to shed His blood for you! It doesn’t matter how filthy you may think you are, God is interested in getting you clean! His Son’s blood can get rid of any sin. Today, praise your God for getting rid of your sin!
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4. (Leviticus 11:46-47; Deuteronomy 14:3-5; Leviticus 11:4-23; Leviticus 11:41-45; Leviticus 11:24-38; Leviticus 20:25-26; Leviticus 11:39-40; Deuteronomy 14:21a; Leviticus 17:15-16; Exodus 22:31; Leviticus 17:10-14; Leviticus 7:22-25; Exodus 23:19) “The Holy” It is clear that God set apart the nation of Israel. His chosen people are called to a special purpose. His selection involves a distinctive life of holiness. Now, living a holy life is not so much about living flawlessly, but about living faithfully. Holiness involves every aspect of your life. You can’t live the holy life God wants while keeping His sovereignty out of other areas of your life. Holiness must involve all of your desires and habits. That is why God is giving dietary instructions to His people. Everything they say and everything they do matters to Him. God calls you to live a holy life too. He wants your holiness to involve everything you say and do. He cares about what you put in your body because it is His temple. Today, let the words you say and the things you do display God’s holiness.
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5. (Lev 19:9-10; Deut 24:19-22; 23:24-25; Lev 25:35-38; Deut 5:16; Lev 19:3a; 20:9; Deut 21:18-21; Lev 19:32; Ex 22:22-24; Lev 19:33-34; 24:22; 19:14, 16-18; Deut 22:1-4; 5:21; 25:4; 22:6-7) “The Generous
Generosity is the hallmark of God’s people. It’s the generous people in this world who make it a better place. Your approach to the poor matters deeply to God. When you pay it forward, you lift up the spirits of people, you honor your Lord, and make it possible for Him to powerfully work. This all comes from a deep sense of gratitude for the generosity of God. Today, notice the less fortunate around you. Take a moment to recall your own poverty. Be grateful for what God has given you… and pay it forward.
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6. (Leviticus 22:31-33; Deuteronomy 12:32; Numbers 15:37-41; Deuteronomy 31:9-13; Leviticus 26:3-46) “The Faithful
God makes it very clear. Obey Him, and you will be blessed. Disobey, and face terrible consequences. Do you think this is true today? Of course it is! When you compare the outcome between those who revere God and those who don’t, it is obvious. For, God does not look to see how religious you are. What really counts is whether or not you love Him and will trust Him. Israel had always been religious, but they weren’t always faithful. This led to their eventual downfall. How about you? Are you merely religious, or are you more reliant when it comes to God? Would God say you have a close relationship with Him? Today, take a close look at your commitment to God. Make sure you are devoted to Him. Trust Him… and be truly blessed.
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7. (Deuteronomy 26:18) “God’s Most Treasured Possession” As you read more and more of the Old Testament, you will notice how much God loves His people. God loved Israel deeply. He cares for this nation too. He leads them…feeds them…protects them…and directs them. Why? He treasures them in His heart. Of all the things He loves, it’s His people He loves the most. He feels the same way about you. You are His first choice (1 Peter 2:9); you really are! He loves you more than anything else. He is for you!! When you talk to Him, He is quick to listen and eager to bless. Today, consider your significance to God. Be encouraged by His deep love for you. Live with confidence, knowing He’s for you. Seek Him and His will with all your heart!
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8. (Deuteronomy 31:1-8, 14-15, 23, 16-22, 31:24-32:47) “Jeshurun” The name means the upright one; and that’s what Israel had been for 40 years. God had provided food and protection as they wandered in the wilderness. All along the way, Israel was focused and committed to their God. But as they are about to go into the Promised Land, God warns them to avoid becoming ungrateful and full of pride like their ancestors were when they came out of Egypt. For, ‘Jeshurun’, (i.e., Israel), had a history of growing fat and lazy from all of God’s blessings, and eventually leaving God all together. By the way, this is exactly what happens again. It would take several generations, but ‘Jeshurun’ – ‘The Upright Ones’ – would become the defiant ones, and reject their God. This sounds kinda crazy, doesn’t it? Today, let Jeshurun remind you of how easily you can grow ungrateful and indifferent toward your loving God. Today, think of how you can remain grateful and humble.
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9. (Deuteronomy 32:48-34:12) “Moses” It has to be a bittersweet moment for Moses. He has spent most of his life leading Israel. First, it is out of the bondage in Egypt. Then, it is out of the pride in Israel as they wander through the wilderness. Finally, he has led a new generation to the borders of Canaan. But Moses can only look from a distance. Why? Why can’t Moses go in with everyone else? He blew it! He messed up at the waters of Meribah Kadesh in the desert of Zin. That’s the bitter part… But there is something sweet happening to Moses. God is still talking to him. God still loves Moses. God is still working with and through Moses. God shows Moses the Promised Land! And He takes him to HEAVEN! Have you blown it? If you have, you need to take it seriously. You must own it! You MUST learn from your mistakes!!! But there’s something else you should know. God is not through with you; He still loves you very much. Forgiveness is His specialty. He still uses ‘epic failures’ for great things. So get back up; brush the dirt off yourself; admit your sins to God… and start again! For, God still wants to use you in a mighty way!
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10. (Joshua 1:1-9, 3:1, 2:1-24, 1:10-18, 3:2-5:15) “Joshua
He has been at the side of Moses since he was a boy… learning how to be a man of God. The time has come for Joshua to step into some pretty big shoes as he replaces Moses. How does he do it? How does he get ready when the time comes to lead? He simply trusts God like he was always taught. You are much like Joshua. There will be a time when it’ll be your turn to lead. It could be your very own family; on your shift; in your neighborhood; or a role in your church. Will you be ready when it’s your turn? Stop wasting valuable time!!! Today, renew your commitment to learn and grow. Take advantage of the mentors God has placed in your life. Learn all you can while you still have time… so you will be ready when it’s your turn to lead.
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11. (Joshua 6) “Achan” He’s hiding something… He’s shady with the truth… He isn’t very clear… He thinks no one will find out… But Achan’s lies eventually catch up with him. They destroy him!!!! What can you learn from Achan? Well, first of all, you can’t hide your sin. Eventually it’s gonna come out into the open. So you might as well get it out before it’s too late. Secondly, your sins aren’t just between you and God. They are connected to everyone you know. It’s a fact: Your hidden sins harm those you love. You can tell yourself that they won’t, but the truth is, your sin will drag your family and friends down with you. Achan’s sin led to 36 casualties in God’s army. When you stop and think about it, that’s a lot of collateral damage! Are you hiding something? Are you leaving out some details? If so, WHY ARE YOU DOING THAT? You are not protecting anyone, including yourself, with more lies. Look what God promises: Whoever conceals their sins does not prosper, but the one who confesses and renounces them finds mercy (Proverbs 28:13). Look, lies don’t work!! Why not try being open and honest with your sin once and for all? You have nothing to lose but your guilt and shame.
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12. (Joshua 10) “Adoni-Zedek, Hoham, Piram, Japhia, and Debir
Five Kings… Five rulers join forces to defeat God’s people. But Joshua calls on the power of God, and something amazing happens. The sun’s momentum slowly dissipates until it stops in its tracks! Then God gives Joshua the power to defeat them all. Amazing, isn’t it? There are powerful ‘Kings’ joining forces to defeat you right now. These Kings can come in the form of pride… greed… lust… jealousy… or bitterness. They seek to dominate and destroy you. But if you will call on The Lord, He will work powerfully and help you defeat them! Today, turn the tide of the battles within you by relying and calling on your Lord. For, He will give you the victory!
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13. (Joshua 14:6-14) “Caleb” Caleb is eighty five years old, and as energetic as ever! His passion for God is as vibrant as it was when he was a young man! So when he asks for his allotment, he asks not for the easy, level landscape of the plains, but for the rugged terrain of the mountains! He cries, “Give me this mountain!” How about you? Would you say you are as passionate for God as you were years ago? Have you died… before you’ve died? Resist the tendency to spiritually plateau. Today, lift up your eyes to God. Ask God to fill your heart with intense passion for Him. Be bold! Grab life by the throat, while trusting The Lord.
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14. (Joshua 21) “The Levites” Of the 12 tribes of Israel, the Levites are special. This priestly tribe was set apart to serve in the presence of The Lord. Accompanying this distinction was the privilege of living throughout the Promised Land. Everywhere they lived was home. This meant that the Levites lived in every town and settlement. Why? Why does God strategically place them everywhere? It was to remind the rest of Israel of God’s love and their obligation to follow Him. In a way, you share this responsibility with the Levites. As God’s special servant, you are strategically placed in your family; campus; neighborhood; and workplace to remind people of how much God loves them, and their obligation to follow The Lord. Today, live in such a way, among the people, that points them to their creator. With your words and conduct, remind those around you to serve The Lord.
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15. (Joshua 23-24) “Friends” Joshua has reached the end of the line. The Promised Land is nearly in Israel’s hands. But before he dies, Joshua gives some final instructions that are very important to consider: He warns Israel to not get too close to the pagan nations among them. Hmmm… Joshua sounds narrow minded. Could he be a little too dramatic here? Not at all! He knows what he’s talking about. You see, Joshua believes the worldly nations will turn Israel’s heart away from God, and this will lead to their destruction. Believe it or not, you live among shades of paganism and unbelief too. Many of your worldly friends can be nice, and a pleasure to be with. Right? But it’s especially with friendships like these that you need to be cautious (Pro 12:26). For, these ‘harmless’ relationships aren’t always so harmless after all. They can influence you in more ways than you think (Pro 18:24). They can slowly lead you away from your core convictions about God and His word (1 Cor 15:33). So what do you do? You do what Joshua did. You make a strong and personal decision to be God’s best friend (Joshua 24:15). This takes a lot of guts! But these kinds of choices can be very rewarding. Today, take a good look at the friendships you cherish. Are they good for you? Are they bringing out your spiritual best? They may be a lot of fun, but how do they influence your faith? Israel would ignore Joshua’s counsel, and lose everything. What about you? Will you make a strong decision to serve The Lord regardless what others will say or do? It’s a tough decision, but it will pay off in the long run!
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16. (Judges 1:1-10) “The Men of Judah and Simeon” With Joshua dead, Israel now turns their attention to the daunting mission of taking possession of the land. God selects the tribe of Judah to begin the task. But the men of Judah do something very smart. Before they begin, they ask the men of Simeon for their help to face the Canaanites. They, in turn, agree to help them conquer their land when the time comes. It’s a very smart move, and the payoff is amazing! Who are the men/women who are helping you take possession of what God has promised? For, what lies ahead of you is too big to handle by yourself! What lies ahead is too great to lose. You are going to need some good and godly people around you if you are going to achieve success. If you have a good team of people around you, then praise God! You are going to make it. But, if you don’t have a good team of people around you, begin forming one immediately. For, two ARE better than one; and three are even better!! With a good team, you will win!
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17. (Judges 2:7, 10-23; Judges 3:1-31) “Othniel” After Joshua dies, another generation raises up that does not know The Lord. As a result, Israel does not follow The Lord. Whether subtle or blatant, their disobedience makes a big mess of things!! How bad does it get? Well, The Lord starts fighting against them! That can’t be good!! But God does something interesting. As soon as the people call out to Him, He sends them His help. He sends Othniel to deliver them. Is there a lesson here? You bet! When you get yourself into trouble, call out to God! For, He loves you and He will send you help. And when He sends you His help, make sure you accept it! For, when you do, God will deliver you and give you all kinds of peace! Are you accepting His help?
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18. (Judges 4:1-5:31) “Jael” Traveling in Israel is difficult these days. People are forced to take the back roads instead of the highways. Why? Once again, Israel’s pride and stubbornness has gotten them into a big mess. Jabin, the King of Canaan, lords over Israel with an iron fist! No one is courageous enough to stand up against Jabin. In distress, God’s people cry out… again. God sends help… again. This time it’s a couple of women—Deborah and Jael. Because Deborah takes a stand, Jael takes a tent peg and drives it through the head of Sisera, and ends the war! Israel is free again! What heroic action can you take to turn things around for your family, ministry, or church? Don’t you think it’s time to stop standing around and letting your enemy push you around? It’s time to take a stand and do something!! Today, call on your Lord for the courage to deal with sin seriously. Call on God to start restoring His people… and let it begin with YOU!
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19. (Judges 6:1-8:3) “Gideon” He rises to become one of the greatest leaders of all time! With only 300 men, He delivers Israel from the hands of Midian. But Gideon didn’t start out that way. At the beginning, you find ‘The Fighting Farmer’ hiding in a hole! He’s not very strong; the runt of his family. Not very impressive when you think about it. When God calls him, Gideon isn’t very cooperative either. He has to have proof that God will be with him. But Gideon finally comes around and climbs out of his hole to be used by God. How about you? Have you been hiding in a hole? Have you been reluctant to have God use you? Look, you will not rise very far in life staying in the safety of your hole. That hole is nothing but a grave for your faith!! It’s time to get out of your hole!!! God needs you!! God needs men and women like Gideon to come out into the open, pick up their sword, and deliver the people. Today, put your faith in God. The God of Gideon will give you the strength you lack, and ensure great victory.
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20. (Judges 8:4-9:57) “Abimelek” He was the son of Gideon and his concubine… and he wanted power! So he kills his own brothers (70 of them) in order to be in charge. But Abimelek’s hunger for more power would eventually destroy him. Abimelek teaches a lesson every follower of God should consider. For, the desire of power and control corrupts the heart. It leads to ignoring and completely disregarding the will of God. Selfish ambition will cause you to say and do all kinds of terrible things to others, (lie, cheat, abandon, hurt), just to get to the top. What do you notice about Abimelek? Where are you trying to have control? What does a selfish ambition lead to? Read James 3:16 for a clue. What would God want you to do? Today, let God have control.
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21. (Judges 10:1-12:15) “Jephthah” Born unexpectedly of a prostitute, and utterly rejected by his own family, Jephthah would be used by The Lord to deliver Israel. He is also listed in the ‘Hall of Faith’ in Hebrews 11:31. What can you learn from this judge? Well, no matter what ‘skeletons’ you may have living in the closet of your past, God can still use you in powerful ways. Your pedigree or perfection doesn’t matter to God as much as your passion to please Him. For, God wants to use you for His purpose. You also learn that doing the will of God may lead to some sacrifice. You see this in Jephthah fulfilling his vow to God. Does he kill his daughter? No… But he does dedicate her to God to serve in the temple the rest of her life as a single woman. To fulfill this kind of vow takes courage and commitment. What are you sacrificing in order to serve your God? Today, let Jephthah give you the hope and courage to faithfully continue to serve God.
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22. (Ruth 1:1-4:22) “Mara” It’s miserable in Israel. A famine has made living conditions extremely difficult. But Naomi is now excited!! She is moving away from the dust and difficulty. With great anticipation, she packs up and leaves her friends to live in the plush and pagan land of Moab. Life is good, right? Wrong!! The greener grass on the other side of the fence soon turns to weeds! In 10 years, she loses her husband and two sons. With no provider, she loses everything! All she has left are her two daughters-in-law. So Naomi returns home with a different name—Mara. It means ‘bitter’. For, her life away has become very bitter. But when she returns, God blesses her with a grandson. How has life been for you lately? When life gets difficult are you tempted to move where the grass appears to be greener? Hey! If you haven’t figured it out by now, the grass is greener where you water it!! If life is difficult right now, don’t cut & run. Stand your ground!! Be patient, and keep trusting The Lord!! For, His blessings are coming your way.
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23. (Judges 13:1-16:31) “Samson” He’s one of the most popular characters in all the Bible. Raised by God-fearing parents, Samson is dedicated to God from birth. Not a bad idea for every parent to do. But the ‘Hercules of the Bible’ had a great weakness. He didn’t listen! For years, Samson’s pride kept him from listening to God and to wise counsel. His pride and carelessness would finally catch up with him. Without realizing it, The Lord left him; and he lost the source of his great strength. But God is gracious to Samson. As Samson calls out to God, his faith and strength are restored. Samson is able to do what he was born to do—deliver Israel from the Philistines. What’s your weakness? Is it your pride? Is it your hormones? Is your weakness fear? Or could it be greed? Do you feel weak? Do you feel defeated? It’s only when you look to God that you will restore your strength. Today, start getting your strength back. Humble yourself, and start listening and learning from God and others.
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24. (Judges 17:1-18:31) “Micah” With the help of his mother, he has made his own personal god and a place of worship. It’s a nice set up. All he needs now is a priest to serve in his little church, and he’ll have it made. But Micah has made a fatal mistake. For, the true place to worship God was closer to Shiloh; but Micah wants it more convenient for himself. So he sets up shop closer to his home, and is content. People have been messing with God and His will for generations. Many today custom make what they want their God to be like, and what He wants them to do. This will never work. You must surrender to God and follow Him on HIS terms. Today, ask yourself if you have been guilty of trying to make your church fit into your own idea of what church should be about over God’s way. Make a commitment to restore God’s Kingdom the way God wants it instead of your way… and be blessed.
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25. (Judges 19:1-21:25) “Benjamin” It’s gruesome beyond belief… A woman is gang raped in Israel, and the tribe of Benjamin wants to sweep it under the rug. But God won’t allow it. To look the other way would have destroyed all of Israel. So God uses the other tribes to confront the sin in Benjamin. Israel presses Benjamin, and they would fight for 3 days! Over 90,000 men would die on the battlefield!! For the sinful actions of a few, many would die. Why? Dealing with sin isn’t a walk in the park. Sometimes it can be a war!! But there is a bright side to this account in the book of Judges. Not everyone in the tribe of Benjamin dies. God is good. God is merciful. 600 are spared. And this remnant would start over and restore a missing tribe. Dealing with your sin isn’t easy. You have to take a very serious approach if you are going to get it out of your life. You may have to put to death all kinds of habits, pleasures, and relationships to get the job done. For, if you fail, you WILL die! But remember one thing. God is good… God is merciful. He will help you start over and give you the power to restore the missing love for yourself, for others, and for Him. Today, face your sin radically… seriously… and find redemption!
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26. (1 Samuel 1:1-2:36) “Hannah” She’s crying… She can barely pray… For Hannah has no children. One day, she makes a promise to God. If she has a son, he will serve The Lord all his life. With hope, Hannah keeps praying until she finally gives birth to Samuel. After a few years, she brings her son to the Tabernacle and gives him to Eli like she promised. Samuel would become one of the most significant characters in all of the Bible. Samuel’s significance can be traced back to the prayers of his mom. Have you ever made a vow to God? Have you ever promised something to God? God takes promises seriously; especially yours! Today, make a promise to God. Make a vow that you will not waste your life. Promise God that you will dedicate every blessing you receive to pleasing Him. Dedicate your children and your grandchildren to Him. Use everything you have to influence them to be faithful to The Lord.
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27. (1 Samuel 3:1-7:17) “Samuel” He may be one of the greatest characters in the Bible. His impact on Israel is unparalleled. Why? How was Samuel able to accomplish so much for God? It could be that he listened closely for God’s voice. The will of God mattered much to Samuel. He expected God to speak to him on a regular basis. With this kind of faith, God was able to prepare him for works of service. How about you? How much are you paying attention to the voice of God? Do you expect The Lord to speak to you regularly? Is he speaking into your life this very minute? Are you a student of the Bible? God speaks to you every day, so listen closely when He communicates to you through a friend, a thought, or His Word. Today, make it a point to listen for God’s voice… and be blessed.
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28. (1 Samuel 8:1-12:25) “The King” Samuel has done a fantastic job leading Israel. But as Samuel gets older and older, Israel realizes he’s not going to be around forever. So they ask for a King. This angers God! Why? Israel already has a King! It’s God Himself!!! Think about it… God has led them and ruled them ever since they left Egypt. After entering the Promised Land, God sent judges to deliver them from the threats of their pagan neighbors. But now God’s people don’t want Him to lead them. They want something more permanent. They want a King to rule them like everyone else; someone to follow into battle. They want a man to lead them. Hmmm… Why is it, when man gets into trouble, he looks on the earth for answers, instead of looking to heaven? Samuel warns that this rejection of God would lead to destruction. It did. In fact, generations later, a crowd would say, “We have no King but Caesar!” (John 19:15). It’s crazy, huh? Look, Leadership is important, but it must never take the place of God! No government or political party has all the answers. No preacher or church leader, (regardless of how charismatic he/she may be), can replace the Lordship of God. God is your true KING. So your loyalty must lie first with God, and no other. Today, answer a few questions about Lordship: Who is your King? Who is calling the shots? Is it another human being, or God? Who has the love and power to take care of you? That’s the King you should serve. (Click To Share Your Thoughts With Me!)
29. (1 Samuel 13:1, 14:49-51; 1 Chronicles 9:35-44; 1 Samuel 13:2-14:45) “Saul” He is considered by most to be the first King of Israel. But it doesn’t take long for Saul to pull off a major blunder. Israel and the Philistines have squared off for a major battle. Before Israel attacks, it is customary to offer God a sacrifice. But after waiting for Samuel for quite a long time, Saul decides to offer the sacrifice to God himself. Oooops!! This is a serious problem!! For, Saul is not a Levite—he’s a Benjamite. This restricts him from offering a sacrifice to God. To make matters worse, Samuel shows up, and he rebukes Saul for his sin, and tells him his days as King are now numbered. Are you one to inquire of The Lord before a major decision or action, or do you tend to ‘wing it’ and ‘fly by the seat of your pants’? The best thing you can do when contemplating a major decision or action, is to seek God’s help and blessing. Today, avoid a major blunder by looking into God’s Word for some guidance. Take your dilemma to God in prayer, and expect Him to give you His wisdom.
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30. (1 Samuel 15:1-35) “Saul (again)” When you stop and think about it, Saul is the first major leader selected by God who rejects Him (v10-11). Up to this time, Moses, Joshua, and the Judges ‘ruled’ much like a King during their lifetime. (For example: Moses commanded an army of 600,000. That sounds like something a King would do, doesn’t it?) A closer look reveals that Moses, Joshua, and the Judges lived and led with great devotion to God (This includes Samson!). Yes, they made their share of mistakes along the way, but they never rejected God’s sovereignty in their lives. Maybe this is why many of them are listed in Hebrews 11… but Saul is not. Saul is doing more than being careless and disobeying a command or two of God. He is rejecting God’s will for his life altogether. This puts the whole nation in peril. Your attitude with God matters as well. Sometimes, you are going to be careless and make a few mistakes along the way; but as long as your heart is devoted to God, your influence (i.e., your leadership) can make a positive impact on your family and friendships. Today, make sure your heart stays completely devoted to God. Learn from your mistakes, and mature into a better leader in God’s Kingdom.
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31. (1 Samuel 16:1-17:58) “Goliath” He is bigger than your average warrior, standing nearly 10′ tall!! He’s a professional killer too. Many men have fallen before him. But today a boy with a sling and a stone brings him down! How is this possible? David has The Lord at his side! It’s remarkable what you can do when you bring The Lord along while facing your giants. What giant are you facing today? Is it discouragement? Is it family drama? Is it a financial mess? Is your giant a stronghold? Is your giant scaring you to death? GOD IS IN THE GIANT KILLING BUSINESS!! Whatever you are facing today, ‘run to the battle line’ with The Lord… and watch your giant fall!
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DailyPeople – April   |   Tim Gill

1. (1 Samuel 18:1-19:18; Psalm 59; 1 Samuel 19:19-21:6) “Jonathan” There is no better example of real friendships in all the Bible than the friendship between David and Jonathan. These guys loved each other deeply. What a blessing to have a friendship like these two. It’s these kinds of friendships that bring out the best in each of us. Godly friendships help you trust The Lord. Jonathan’s friendship is seen in his generosity, honesty, sacrifice, and support toward David. Jonathan is willing to risk his life and throw away his throne for his best friend. Do you have friendships like David & Jonathan? Better yet, are you a friend like Jonathan? Are you thinking of someone right now who needs you to be like Jonathan? Today, appreciate the godly friendships you have. Do the things that will deepen your friendships. Be a great friend to someone today.
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2. (1 Samuel 21:7-12; Psalm 56; 1 Samuel 21:13-15; Psalm 34; 1 Samuel 22:1-2; Psalm 142;1 Chronicles 12:8-18; 1 Samuel 22:3-5) “David
Things are not going very well for David. As he flees Saul, David finds himself in the countries that are hostile toward God. He is feeling powerless and alone. But David does something powerful. He cries out to God. God hears David’s prayers, and protects him from those who seek to destroy him. Whatever you are going through, be encouraged by the fact that God is with you. He has never left you. He’s protecting you right now!! So try to relax. Today, be grateful for all the things God is doing. Call out to God and talk with Him. Trust God to work out everything (including your trials) for His good.
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3. (1 Samuel 22:6-23; Psalm 52; 1 Samuel 23:1-14; Psalm 63; 1 Samuel 23:15-25; Psalm 54; 1 Samuel 23:26-24:22; Psalm 57; 1 Samuel 25:1) “David (again)” One the most challenging things every believer faces is how they treat people who treat them poorly. Saul has been pursuing David for quite some time. He wants him dead! It’s so bad that David’s men are pressuring David to kill Saul. But when David gets another chance to take Saul out, he doesn’t. He lets him live. Why? David cannot bring himself to harm the Lord’s anointed. Instead of taking matters into his own hands, David lets God handle it. How do you treat those who are mistreating you? How do you respond to those who want their pound of flesh? As difficult as it may be, God wants you to treat your enemies with mercy and respect. He wants you to trust His justice. Today, make it your mission to treat those who long for your demise with love and humility. Leave room for God’s wrath. This will be very challenging; but if you do, you will be glad you did.
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4. (1 Samuel 25:2-28:2, 29:1-11, 30:1-31; 1 Chronicles 12:1-7, 12:19-22) “Nabal” He’s cantankerous, surly, and flat out mean. Nabal has the reputation of being a grumpy and frumpy kind of guy! Difficult to deal with, Nabal’s selfishness eventually gets him into trouble with David; so much so, that David is ready to kill him!! This sends Nabal’s wife, Abigail, into crisis mode. She quickly throws together 200 loaves of bread, 2 skins of wine, several sheep, some cakes and grain for David and his men. Her humble plan works to ease tension and stave off David’s brutal plans of revenge. Do you have a reputation of being a grumpy guy? Can you be difficult to deal with? Look…Being a jerk only makes life more difficult, and will make you miserable. Sooner or later, a cantankerous spirit will come face to face with disaster!! Nabal dies of a heart attack!! Yikes!! Don’t be this person!! Today, strive to be pleasant with others. Do your best to treat others with consideration and respect. Your kindness can take the ‘drama’ down a notch or two, creating harmony and peace in the relationships you have.
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5. (1 Samuel 28:3-25; 1 Samuel 31:1-13; 1 Chronicles 10:13-14; 2 Samuel 4:4; 2 Samuel 1:1-27) “King Saul” A great tragedy has occurred. A King lies dead on the battlefield next to his sons. Why? Why did this happen? Saul was chosen by God to be the King of His people. But Saul would not choose God to be King of his heart! Who sits on the throne of your life? Who will be the King of you? Right now, people, pleasures, possessions, problems, and preferences are all clamoring to take some kind of control of your life. Today, kick these kings off your throne, and give your heart to The King of Kings!
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6. (2 Samuel 2:1-5:5; 1 Chronicles 11:1-3; 1 Chronicles 12:23-40) “Asahel” He can run like the wind! As he slowly catches up with Abner (Saul’s commander), his hunger for victory causes him to make a foolish mistake. Without warning, Abner plants the tip of his spear into the ground, and Asahel slams into the other end. Asahel lies dead! You’d think Abner’s woes are solved, but this triggers a feud between two families. Joab (Asahel’s brother) wants his ‘pound of flesh’. Though Abner is justified in killing Asahel, and he makes peace with David, Joab finds a way to get his revenge. What can you learn from all this? A desire for a ‘reckoning’ only makes things worse. Revenge doesn’t change anything. Asahel is still dead, and Abner is still sad. David is heartbroken, and Israel is mourning. Strife will continue in Joab’s family all his life. Before David dies, plans to eliminate Joab are in the works. Who is hurting you? Who would you like to get even with? Revenge doesn’t make things even; it doesn’t settle the score. Revenge only makes things worse. Everyone loses!! Today, do not take vengeance against your enemies. Trust God to settle the score. Love your enemies… and take the high road to peace.
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7. (1 Chronicles 13) “Uzzah” It’s not clear if he meant to do it, or
it was just an accident. But Uzzah tries to steady the cart that is transporting the Ark of the Covenant back to Jerusalem… and dies!! Why? Regardless of the motive, Uzzah disregards God’s warning and touches the Ark of the Covenant. This may sound petty, but this is a big no no! A lack of respect for God can get you into some serious trouble. Today, learn from Uzzah’s disaster. Respect and accept what God is saying to you.
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8. (2 Samuel 6:12; 1 Chronicles 15:1-16:36; Psalm 105; Psalm 96) “Obed-Edom” Imagine the Ark of the Covenant is in your living room. This is the same Ark that Uzzah touched; and then he died! This holy box contains Aaron’s staff, some manna, and The 10 Commandments. For three months Obed-Edom’s home is abundantly blessed because the presence of God resides in his home. So when the ark is being prepared to be moved to Jerusalem, Obed-Edom packs up his things and follows it into town. Why? He wants to stay as close to God as possible. He knows that his life is blessed the most when he is closer to God. He won’t let the Ark be out of his sight. He becomes a gatekeeper, a musician, and one of the attendants before The Lord for the rest of his life. How close are you to your Lord? What are you doing to stay close to Him? Are other things drawing you away from God? Today, don’t let The Lord be out of your sight. Get as close to Him as you can… and be abundantly blessed!
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9. (2 Samuel 9) “Mephibosheth” Because of a terrible fall, he has been crippled since he was 5 years old. It’s hard to get around. The good thing is that he happens to be the son of David’s best friend. So David finds Mephibosheth in the small town of Lo Debar, (i.e., Nothing), and brings him to his beautiful palace. On behalf of Jonathan, David gives Mephibosheth all the land that belonged to his grandfather Saul. He also gives Mephibosheth a standing invitation to eat with the King’s family every day for as long as he lives. In a way, you are like Mephibosheth—you have been crippled from a FALL… Man’s fall. Sin has made your life difficult, giving you nothing (Lo Debar) but heartache. But God wants to restore what belongs to you, and invites you to His great banquet table as one of His own. God does this not based on your merit, but solely in honor of His son Jesus. Are you amazed at this? Are you grateful? You should be! Today, praise your God for being so good to you. Praise Him for inviting you into His presence.
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10. (2 Samuel 21:15-22; 1 Chronicles 18:1; 1 Chronicles 19:1-19; Psalm 60; 2 Samuel 11:2-12:17; Psalm 51) “Nathan” His name means “a gift from God”, and this is what he is. For David has gotten himself in over his head. His lust has led to murder and to a cover up. But God loves David too much to let him get away with it. He sends the prophet Nathan to confront his sin. And when Nathan does, David breaks! Psalm 51 captures David’s gut wrenching sorrow for what he has done. Do you have someone like Nathan who has the courage to confront you, and bust you out? If so, you need to thank God for this special gift. For, a friend who will confront your sin is a gift from heaven. David would one day say, “Let the righteous man strike me, it’s a kindness. Let him rebuke me, it’s ointment on my head. I will not refuse it!” (Psalm 141:5). Maybe David was thinking about Nathan when he wrote this song. Today, thank God for your Nathan. Appreciate the ‘Nathans’ God sends by listening to their rebuke. Let these ‘gifts from God’ help you turn from your sin, and turn back to God.
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11. (1 Chronicles 11:10-47; 2 Samuel 23:9-17)
Eleazar, Abishai, Shammuh” They fought beside thirty warriors, and were known as The Mighty Three. These brave and valiant men loved David deeply. They supplied support, and helped David have many victories. Do you have some mighty men around you? Do you have a network of faithful Christians who help you to be victorious? Can you name the ‘mighty’ people God supplies in your life? Look, you need strong Christian people at your side! You must make the effort to cultivate good relationships with people who have stronger faith. When you do, you are becoming stronger and more difficult to defeat. Today, appreciate the good and faithful friendships God supplies. Praise God for the mighty people at your side. Let them help you to gain many victories.
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12. (2 Samuel 13:1-29) “Amnon” He rapes her! Amnon rapes his half-sister, Tamar!! What makes a guy do such an evil thing to his beautiful half-sister? Lust… It’s lust! Amnon doesn’t love Tamar; he lusts after her. Amnon couldn’t care less for Tamar. She’s nothing but an object of pleasure. And his guilt and shame drive him to hate her!! Lust is a powerful sin! It’s lust that causes Amnon’s downfall. For, Absalom (Tamar’s brother) hates Amnon for what he’s done; so he plans and executes his revenge. That’s the problem of lust. It deceives you with promises of pleasure and satisfaction; but, in reality, it produces nothing but heartache. David knew this well. How about you? Is lust getting out of control for you? If you are facing lust in your life, get serious about it before you get out of control and do something you regret. The answer to your lust is love! The antidote is the love of God. Today, call on your God to help you. While you are at it, ask your godly friends to help you. When you do, you are taking a serious step toward overcoming your lust.
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13. (2 Samuel 14:25-16:14; Psalm 3) “Absalom” He deserves death for killing Amnon, but his father King David spares his son’s life. Absalom is restricted from seeing the King and living in his home for the next few years. And when Absalom has had enough, he strongly demands to see his father; as if he’s entitled. Absalom hasn’t learned a thing. He foolishly believes he was justified in avenging the rape of his sister Tamar. David would eventually restore his favor to his son. But with bitterness, Absalom would spend the next four years working to undermine his father’s power and influence. It works! David flees for his life as his son Absalom enters Jerusalem as a self-proclaimed King. Do you have an Absalom living near you that discredits you in some way? Is there someone who is trying to torpedo your impact on others? If so, learn from David, and trust The Lord. Leave your foes in the hands of God (Ps 3). Trust God to settle the score. Trust Him to do what is right. Focus more on what you can do to make it easier for God to change you, rather than finding pleasure in getting even with your ‘Absalom’.
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14. (2 Samuel 16:15-19:4) “Ahithophel” He is a trusted advisor to the King. But when David flees from Absalom, Ahithophel becomes Absalom’s chief advisor. At David’s request, The Lord thwarts Ahithophel’s advice. This leads Absalom to utter ruin. Are you getting good advice and counsel? How do you determine if the counsel you get is good? If you have access to solid counsel, are you listening? Today, decide that you are going to get godly counsel. Open your heart to learn from the godly around you.
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15. (2 Samuel 19:5-20:26) “Joab” David has been crying uncontrollably over the death of his son Absalom for days. You might assume that this is merely a prolonged touching moment of a father for his deceased son, but it’s not. David has let his emotions get out of control so much so that he can’t see clearly what he is doing. Without realizing it, he has insulted his mighty men with his crocodile tears. This is where Joab steps in… He rebukes David, telling him that he is sending a mixed signal to his men; and if he doesn’t do something quick, he’s going to lose the throne. David finally wakes up!! Look… everyone needs to be challenged from time to time. No man is perfect! Everyone is going to have one of those days when, for whatever reason, they’re not thinking clearly. That’s when they need a courageous friend to speak a little sense into them. Do you have anyone like that? Will you listen to their rebuke? David said, a rebuke from a friend is kindness, and like ointment (Ps 141). Do you have the courage to speak up like Joab? Remember, your timely words could prevent a foolish decision. Today, appreciate and listen to those who correct you. Also… Don’t be afraid to rebuke a friend who is about to make a huge mistake.
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16. (2 Samuel 21:1-14) “Rizpah” There is a drought across the Promised Land. God is unhappy with the way Saul has treated the Gibeonites. Without consulting God, David hands over 7 of Saul’s grandsons to relieve the pain and bitterness of the Gibeonites toward the house of Saul. The Gibeonites waste no time, and execute the 7 immediately. It’s another huge blunder for David. As the bodies of two of them begin to decay while exposed in public humiliation, Rizpah, their mother, guards over them. Imagine her chasing away vultures and jackals for six months! Why does she do this? She does it out of a deep love for her boys. Rizpah is an inspiring example of a mother’s love and devotion to her children. Rizpah also illustrates God’s great love for you. For, He loves you so much that He will never leave your side. He will chase off any who try to devour you. Today, cherish the kind of love you have from God. Let His love fill your heart with gratitude and praise.
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17. (1 Chronicles 23:1-26:11) “The Levite” Here in these chapters, you find a list of names. These names make up the Levitical priesthood. These special servants managed the articles and activities in the Tabernacle or the Temple. Everyone had a job to do. In a way, you have a special responsibility in God’s Kingdom too. Your priesthood is more than Levitical…it’s ‘royal’ (1 Peter 2:9). That means your bloodline can be traced all the way back to God’s very throne!! So you have a special job to do too, as God’s chosen person. Today, start looking for what God wants you to do. Volunteer your time and talents to lift up your Lord. Become the kind of ‘Levite’ that will help God’s Kingdom grow.
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18. (1 Chronicles 28:2-29:22) “Solomon” ‘Seek the Lord and be strong… Don’t be afraid or discouraged, and do the work.’ (vs 9-10,20). This is the advice Solomon gets from his dad as he begins to build the Temple. This is still good advice to live by! For, when you seek The Lord in everything you do, He will keep you balanced. Seeking God’s favor helps you face those moments of fear and discouragement with greater confidence. For, God will always be with you! This is true whether you’re building a godly family, building a career, or building up God’s Kingdom. Today, seek The Lord, and do His work. Seek The Lord… do not be afraid… and work! For, your God is with you. He will not fail you or forsake you until the work is done!
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19. (Psalm 5, 10, 11) “The Wicked” They are everywhere… They live in your workplace; among your family; on your campus; and in your community. The wicked are everywhere. Now, the wicked may not appear so ‘wicked’ to you. They can be the nicest people in the world. But a closer look reveals that they have little interest in, or regard for, God. The wicked spread malicious lies, and manipulate the system to their personal gain. With pride and arrogance, the wicked boast of their accomplishments. They take advantage of weaker people, crushing them like a bug. Occasionally, the wicked will disrupt your plans, making life difficult. What do you do with the wicked? David asks this too (11:3). Here’s what you do: You call out to God! Ask Him to work His justice, and grant you the wisdom to trust His work. Take refuge in Him, and trust Him to settle the score. For, God is on His throne! He has all He needs to make things right, and He will always have your back!
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20. (Psalm 13; Psalm 17; Psalm 23; Psalm 26; Psalm 28; Psalm 31)
The Shepherd” Carefully read these Psalms again. Of all the things God is called by David, he often uses the term ‘Shepherd’. Why? It’s because the term ‘Shepherd’ describes The Lord the best. The shepherd represents great care and protection. It’s the shepherd that is constantly taking care of his flock. He is willing to risk his life for his sheep. A shepherd leads and feeds; guides and provides; protects and directs. Your Lord demonstrates all of these qualities for you every day! It’s no wonder that, when he found himself facing trouble, David would call out to his shepherd… and you should too. Today, if you are facing trouble, call out to your shepherd, and He will come running to the rescue. Call out to God, and experience His love and power to make you safe.
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21. (Psalm 35; Psalm 41; Psalm 43; Psalm 55) “Mean People
They love to hurt you. They enjoy watching you squirm and suffer. They spread lies about you too. They long for your demise. The world is filled with mean people. David is facing an onslaught of attacks from mean people. What do you do? Do you fight back? Do you fight fire with fire? Is it okay to be bitter? The answer may not excite you: You trust The Lord with it! You surrender your desire to retaliate or run, and you stand firm with your God. As you read David’s tirade, you will notice something interesting. David doesn’t take matters into his own hands. Yes, he complains to God, but he doesn’t grab his sword and rush out the door to settle the score. No… He lets God settle the score. He calls on God to deal with the mean people in his life. He chooses to treat others like God treats him—with mercy. This takes a lot of spiritual guts! But when you choose to respond with kindness, instead of reacting in anger, you are being just like Jesus. While mean people put Him on a cross, He did not retaliate or make any threats. He entrusted what mean people were doing to Him, to His Father. Do you have the spiritual guts to respond like Jesus? When mean people are hurting you, surrender your anger and bitterness to God. Who knows? The mean people in your life may turn to God!!
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22. (Psalm 61; Psalm 62; Psalm 64; Psalm 69) “My Rock
What gives you resilience? What helps you persevere? David is facing more and more criticism and bashing. People are throwing David under the bus. Does it hurt? Why, of course it does!! These guys are pros!! They know exactly how to discourage him. They know all the tricks to undermining his confidence and joy. But David does something wise. He does something empowering. David calls out to his Rock. When you pray, you invoke the power of God in your situation. When you pray to your Rock, God will give you quiet confidence and incredible hope. Today, if you are under attack, call out to your Rock… and He will get you through your toughest time.
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23. (Psalm 77, 86) “The Discouraged” David is faithful; but, for some reason, he’s restless. He tosses and turns in bed. Why? He’s discouraged. Things aren’t going his way. People are attacking him. These attacks are weighing him down. He feels all alone. He starts to question God’s love and power. He wonders if things will ever turn around for him. He wonders… he quietly sits and ponders. Not knowing what else he can do, he meditates and prays. Then he remembers the mighty things God has done long ago. He’s not just being sentimental or wishing for the good old days. He realizes that his God has done some amazing things, and will do amazing things once again. His prayers turn from sadness to praise. He asks God to give him an undivided heart. Are you discouraged? Do you feel all alone? The God who parted the Red Sea is eager to work a miracle in your life!! The God who saved you out of all your muck and filth is ready to work again. Today, reflect on all the wonders God has worked in your lifetime. Continue to be faithful, and serve Him. Be patient! Wait on God to work again. And above all, ask Him to get your heart ready for when He does.
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24. (Psalm 91) “Shaddai” You are in a safe and secure place. Under His mighty arms, nothing can destroy you. Those who want to harm you are powerless. Evil cannot get close enough to touch you. If you stumble, He sends angels to pick you up and keep you on your feet. If you get into trouble, He’s there to get you out. Doesn’t that sound wonderful? This happens when you take hold of God. When you seek to know Him, trust Him, and call out to Him, He comes running to the rescue! He is eager to save you. Are you holding on to God? Are you trusting Him with whatever you are facing? Today, renew your commitment to The Lord. Make Him your refuge, and experience the security that comes from His almighty power.
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25. (Psalm 121) “The Watchman” He is stationed in a tower that overlooks the town. He stands guard through the night so everyone can sleep in safety. He’s the first to sound the alarm when danger comes. The Watchman provides a sense of security. This is the image David gives in these Psalms. He compares God to the Watchman! How does it feel to know that God watches over you? He guards you from evil 24/7. God is determined to keep you safe. So whatever you face today, rest assured that The Watchman has got your back, and will protect you from disaster.
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26. (Psalm 1; Psalm 14; Psalm 15; Psalm 36; Psalm 37; Psalm 39)
The Wicked” Make sure you read these Psalms this morning!! They describe the traits and fate of the wicked. The wicked don’t call on God… In fact they don’t respect God at all. They ignore the needs of the misfortunate. The wicked slander and deride others. They bend the rules in order to get ahead. But God wants you to understand that the wicked are as frail as grass. They may appear to be flourishing, but soon the wicked wither and die. How about you? Do you share any of the traits of the wicked? Today, remember God’s warning to the wicked. Pursue your God with humility. Crave His word… and be blessed!
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27. (Psalm 49) “The Mortal” No matter how much you have or how much you know, you are mortal. Like any animal, you are powerless to avoid a fact of life—you are going to die. This is what you have in common with every living creature. So what will you do with the time you have left on earth? Will you spend it building a legacy of personal accomplishments that will be forgotten? Or will you focus on the bigger picture? Will you focus on eternity? Will you accept ‘the inevitable’, and turn your attention toward God? Today, take a long look at your mortality. Accept your limits and helplessness as a human being. Seek your Lord!! For He can snatch you out of the grave, and give you eternal life. Use the rest of your life to pursue God, and honor His name.
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28. (Psalm 82) “The Needy” They literally have nothing to offer you. They are poor… destitute. For some, they are an annoyance. The needy will always be with you. You see them on the side of the street, or living in boxes under bridges. The psalmist declares that God watches over the needs of the poor. He is right! Do you have a soft spot for the less fortunate? God’s heart is tender with the poor. He extends His mercy to the poor… and so should you! Today, be on the lookout for people who are needy. Help others experience God’s love by loving the needy around you.
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29. (Psalm 24:8) “The Mighty Warrior” Imagine a soldier standing victorious over his foes. He is fearless! He is tough! He IS a Mighty Warrior. This is your Lord! There is nothing God cannot handle. When He stands with you, you can be sure that your victory is secure. What enemy are you facing today? Who is opposing you? If you are facing an attack of some kind, remember to trust your Mighty Warrior! For, you have access to the most powerful ally available today. So pray about it, and watch your mighty warrior come through and seal your victory.
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30. (Psalm 68:5) “The Father” Just the sound of His voice gives you hope and reassurance. You take what He says seriously. For when the Father speaks, He can change the laws of Physics! Your Father can create or destroy anything with a single word! Your Heavenly Father is there for you! He provides you with incredible support from the rest of His family. You never have to face anything alone again. Why not talk with Him today? Like a dad, He is eager to listen to you.
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DailyPeople – May   |   Tim Gill

1. (Psalm 100) “Good God” When you stop and think about it, the Lord IS good! He loves you like no one else. When God is ever angry, He refuses to hold a grudge. God cannot stay angry for long. He loves you with continual forgiveness. The Lord is good… You’re His favorite possession, and you can be sure that you have His full attention all the time. He guards over you to keep you safe. He showers you with blessings you don’t deserve; so many blessings, you can’t keep track of them. The Lord is good to you. Today, count your blessings, and praise your God. For, HE IS VERY GOOD!!
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2. (Psalm 103; Psalm 104; Psalm 114; Psalm 117) “God
The Lord is great! Can you think of anything or anyone that compares to God? There is no one who forgives you completely and thoroughly like God. God never treats you like you deserve to be treated. He deeply loves you. He doesn’t hide His thoughts or His will from you. God controls everything; from the rain that falls from the sky to each breath you take. Kind of amazing, huh? God is so powerful He can shake the earth. Today, read these Psalms with these thoughts in mind. Today, realize you serve an incredible God who loves you with all His heart.
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3. (Psalm 119) “Righteous God” Everything about your God is…’RIGHT’. This means everything God says to you is true. So, every word in the Bible is true too. Everything God does is legit. He will never make a mistake. He will never lie or mislead you. His motives are absolutely pure. So, every promise God gives, you can fully trust. Need direction? You can be sure that the counsel God offers is filled with greater wisdom than all the combined wisdom people have on earth. God knows what He is talking about. Even His love for you is perfect and filled with His goodness. You can’t go wrong when you trust God! Today, as you read the longest Psalm, have complete confidence in everything God says, and be blessed by God’s righteousness.
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4. (Psalm 122; Psalm 124; Psalm 133; Psalm 134; Psalm 135; Psalm 136; Psalm 138) “The Lofty and Exalted One” God’s greatness is so much higher than anything or anyone else. His holiness towers above all His creation. His power has no rival. He is exalted above the heavens. He is high and mighty among the clouds. Yet, it is ‘The Lofty One Of Heaven’ who comes down to earth to be with you. He looks kindly from afar, and sees you clearly. Like the words of a familiar song, “He stoops down to make you great.” This is the Almighty God—Who loves you… Who watches over you… Who notices you! Today, as you scurry through your day, remember this: The Lofty One sees you and loves you. He stretched out His hands from His throne in Heaven to touch your life with His amazing love. And His Love Endures FOREVER!!!
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5. (Psalms 139, 145, 148, 150) “The One Who Is Praiseworthy
How much are you praising your God? How much praise does He hear coming from you? Take a few minutes and count all the blessings of God. For example: You are never alone! For He is everywhere! He knows everything about you and still loves you. He’s planned your life for you too. It’s a good life! He provides so much. Not only food and shelter, but friendships, forgiveness, and peace. God IS worthy of your praise. So… have you thought of anything you could praise God for today?
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6. (Psalm 32) “The Teacher” Who was your favorite teacher growing up? Teachers play a major role in your life. Just imagine where you’d be without the counsel of your mentors. Kind of scary, huh? You owe a lot to your teachers! Well, God is the greatest teacher of all. For, God is full of wisdom, and holds all the great secrets of life. His word offers truth and guidance to the seeking soul. As you read Psalm 32 this morning, allow David to encourage you to be a good student and learn much at the feet of your Lord. What are you learning from God? Are you being as stubborn as a mule? Or are you letting God teach you? Today, class is in session!! Be alert! Give God your complete attention. Be eager to learn from your Lord.
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7. (Psalms 42) “The Mighty One” Are you unsettled? Are you feeling discouraged? Are you going through a tough time? Put your hope in God! Remember, the Mighty One watched over His people, and He is watching over you! God will not abandon you or forsake you. He doesn’t promise to insulate you from suffering, but He promises to protect you from destruction. So call out to him! Talk to Him about everything that is bothering you today. He’ll listen. He’ll answer too. Today, praise The Mighty One!
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8. (Psalm 141:5) “The Righteous Man” You can see him coming your way. He looks like he has something serious on his mind. You soon find out his intentions. With love, he opens his mouth to confront your sin. You realize you are faced with a choice. Do you listen to what he has to say, or do you brush it off? You carefully ponder his words and decide to humble yourself. You allow him the verbal latitude to be frank. It’s good that you do. So you listen carefully to his rebuke. You take it like medicine for your soul. And that’s what it is—medicine for your soul. Afterward, you realize you are better. You thank God for giving you such a friend. This is what David is meaning here. Will you let a righteous man strike you? Will you give a friend the verbal freedom to be frank with you? Will you accept correction from a friend? If you will, prepare to be blessed with greater faith and maturity. For, correction is the primary way we learn the most. Correction carries with it great wisdom. Today, appreciate the friends who can look you in the eye and have the guts to tell you the truth.
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9. (Psalm 22) “Jesus” In agony, He quotes this Psalm from the cross. It gives you an idea of what He’s going through for you. He feels forsaken. For, His Father cannot stand to witness what is happening to His son. Jesus is separated from His Father because of your sin. He cries out to His Father… but He does not answer. All Jesus can hear are insults from the crowd. He feels His heart pounding. His joints hurt. He’s thirsty. His hands and feet are pierced with crucifixion nails. He watches men gamble over His clothing. It’s humiliating! But as He draws His last breath, His Father comes and takes Him. The deed is done; the price is paid; and you are finally free! Today, praise your God. For, He gave His son for you. Praise your God for being so generous. Praise your God for His great love!
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10. (Psalm 45; 47; 48; 87; 110) “The King” Over and over, there is a recurring theme in the Psalms. God is reigning over everything! He is the undisputed King of all. He does as He wishes on the earth, and no one can stop Him. He possesses the power to reign over you and the rest of the world. There is no problem too big or complicated for Him to handle. He has the power to protect you from harm. He has the resources to supply you with all you need. He is eager to hear from His subjects. He deeply cares about you. It’s no wonder that God deserves your respect and praise. Today, be mindful of the will of your King, and seek to please Him. Count the many blessings that come from God’s throne, and offer up your praise.
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11. (1 Kings 1) “Adonijah” He’s the younger brother of Absalom, and desires to be King… NOW! But Adonijah jumps the gun. He gathers 50 men in chariots, and starts to strut his stuff all around town! He sacrifices thousands of sheep and cattle! Then, he throws a party for himself to celebrate his self-appointed role as King of Israel. But in his arrogance, Adonijah counts his chickens before they’ve hatched. He soon realizes he will not be King of Israel. For, David will appoint Solomon. Adonijah crashes and burns!! Arrogance is dangerously sinful. For, arrogance distorts reality, and twists the truth. It blinds your ability to see who you really are; you cannot clearly see God’s will or purpose either. So…. Will arrogance blind your perspective? Will arrogance keep you from hearing the truth? Today, humble yourself before God. (Click To Share Your Thoughts With Me!)
12. (1 Kings 2:13-46; 1 Kings 3:1; 1 Kings 9:16; 1 Kings 3:2-3; 2 Chronicles 1:2-6; 1 Kings 3:5-28) “Solomon” Though Solomon’s rule had a rocky start, God securely established his throne. But how well would Solomon rule? Hmmm… That would be determined by Solomon himself. For, when he first approaches God, Solomon doesn’t ask for riches or fame. He asks for the ability to rule wisely. Solomon wants to make the wisest choices. Could you use a little more wisdom? Wouldn’t you like to make better choices? Start by asking God to help you find His wisdom. By choosing wisdom, Solomon ended up with both wisdom AND riches and fame!! Today, crave the knowledge and wisdom of God. Read… pray… and ask a few questions. Make attaining God’s wisdom a high priority.
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13. (2 Chronicles 2:1; 1 Kings 5:1-9; 2 Chronicles 2:3-16; 1 Kings 5:10-18; 2 Chronicles 2:2, 17-18; 1 Kings 6:1-38; 2 Chronicles 3:1-14; 1 Kings 7:13-51; 2 Chronicles 4:1-22; 8:12-16) “Huram-Abi” 480 years after the Israelites left Egypt, the construction of the temple would begin. It would take 7 years to complete. In that time, Solomon would summon skilled workers from all over Israel. One of the skilled laborers who helped to build the temple was Huram-Abi. This skilled craftsman made many of the furnishings for the temple. When you think about it, God uses skilled men and women to do His work in His Kingdom. What is your particular skill? Are you gifted with your hands? Has God given you certain skills to teach? Do you have the talent to sing? Do you have an ability to organize and manage? If so, how are you using it in God’s Kingdom? Today, brainstorm ways you can use your gifts, abilities, and skill to build God’s Kingdom. God needs workers now! Will you be one of them?
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14. (2 Chronicles 5:2-14; 6:1-42; 1 Kings 8:46-61; 2 Chronicles 7:1-10) “Asaph” Just imagine what it must have been like to experience the dedication of God’s Temple. Imagine watching thousands of bulls and sheep sacrificed to cleanse the place and the people. All of a sudden, it’s time for you to start singing praises to God. But as you begin your praise, a thick dark cloud descends upon the Temple. The cloud envelops everyone with so much of the presence of God that you cannot sing! Does this send a chill down your spine? What a moment—to have a special moment when you know God is very close! Hmmm… God wants to do more than fill buildings. God wants to fill your heart with His presence. He wants you to experience His Spirit descending and powerfully dwelling in you! When you begin to praise God, He will fill your heart with His presence and peace. Would you like that? Today, call on your God. Praise and honor His holy name. If you do, you will experience His presence.
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15. (1 Kings 7:1-12; 2 Chronicles 7:11-22; 1 Kings 9:10-28; 2 Chronicles 8:1-11; 1 Kings 4:1-34; 1 Kings 10:1-29; Psalms 72:1-19)
The Queen Of Sheba” She travels hundreds of miles to meet King Solomon. She has to see for herself if it is true—Is Solomon as wise as people claim? Does he get his great insight from God? She listens intently as he speaks of everyday topics. He weaves into his conversation the influence of his God. She discovers that the rumors are true. In fact, Solomon is wiser than people say. She can see that God has blessed Solomon abundantly too. She leaves his palace amazed at The Lord. What is your reputation? What do people hear and see from your life? Do your family and friends see The Lord in your words and actions? Will they see that God is the true source of your morals, conduct, and blessings? When they walk away from you, who will they be amazed by? Today, you have a great opportunity to make a difference in someone’s life. Seize these moments with words and actions that reflect Jesus Christ.
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16. (Proverbs 8:1-36, 9:1-6, 2:1-22, 3:13-24, 1:20-33, 9:13-18, 4:1-27) “The Woman Of Wisdom”  In these proverbs, Solomon describes wisdom as a woman. She calls out to you every day, promising to guide and protect you. Sound judgment is yours when you embrace her. You can always count on her to tell you the truth. Pursue her and you will be richly blessed. Fail to follow her and you will only ruin yourself. How important is God’s wisdom to you? How much do you pursue God’s wisdom on your own? For, she holds the secrets of life. You will find safety and security when she is truly yours. Today, make a commitment to pursue God’s wisdom. Let her teach you the will of God.
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17. (Proverbs 26:4-11) “The Fool” He’s stubborn. He thinks he knows more than most. He refuses to listen to the wise counsel of others. He hides his ignorance with a thin coat of pride. He appears to be open to advice; but as soon as he is on his own, he does what he wants. When he suffers tough consequences for his poor choices, he justifies it as bad luck, or blames others for his misery. He doesn’t like people telling him what to do. When he talks, his counsel is skewed by immaturity and arrogance. What’s his problem? He’s a fool. Fools are usually not mean or nasty; they can be the nicest, yet most rebellious people on earth. Sometimes wise counsel can steer them in the right direction. But for the most part, it takes a painful consequence to get their attention. Today, avoid being a fool. Listen to the godly people God has placed in your life. Prepare your attitude with humility and openness. If you do, you will avoid a lot of trouble… and you’ll be blessed!
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18. (Proverbs 3:1-2; 9:7-9; 10:8; 12:15; 13:1; 13:13; 15:31; 17:10; 19:16; 19:20; 19:25; 19:27; 23:9; 25:12; 27:5-6; 27:17; 29:1; 11:14; 15:22; 20:18; 24:5-6) “The Prudent” The message is obvious as you read these Proverbs and the other passages for today: God rewards the prudent life. He really does! That’s because prudent people listen to instruction, while mockers blow it off. Prudent people want to learn. That’s why it’s hard to offend them. The prudent respect godly counsel. They don’t try to justify their mistakes. You will hear no doubletalk from the lips of the prudent. They don’t make excuses either. They own their mistakes. When rebuked, the prudent take it and learn from it. The prudent accept the fact that they do not know everything. They believe, sometimes, they can be wrong. They believe God is actively trying to help them though painful conversation and correction to give them a spiritual edge. By approaching life this way, the results are astronomical. The prudent mature more quickly. They are able to avoid the foolish pitfalls of life. They are able to help others. They bring glory to God. Are you prudent? Would your friends say you are prudent? Today, take the steps to humble yourself and listen to others. Let God use the godly friends in your life to give you a spiritual edge that will bless you and bring glory to God.
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19. (Proverbs 20:6) “The Reliable” Can people count on you? Do you have the reputation of being dependable? Solomon makes an observation: Many people will say that they are loyal, but who can find a reliable person? You have to admit, reliability is a rare commodity these days. The world is full of people who sincerely make promises… and then break them. Unreliable people break appointments at the last minute, skip payments, distort information, and show up late for work. It’s difficult for them to follow through. They are plagued with a growing list of unfinished tasks and projects. They are a major source of frustration in families, friendships, and the workplace. Solomon puts it this way: The unreliable are as painful and useless as a broken tooth or a lame foot in times of trouble (Proverbs 25:19). Yikes!! Who wants to be like that? If you have a reputation for being unreliable, don’t let it discourage you. You can change this dreadful habit when you admit it and exert some self-discipline. Today, admit where you are being undisciplined. Tackle an area where you struggle with reliability. Today, make a commitment to be a man/woman of your word. Be determined to make your promises good. Building a reputation of dependability takes time, but with God’s help you can do it! And God will bless your efforts.
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20. (Proverbs 29:22) “The Hot Head” Anger is a tricky emotion. Look what Solomon says: “An angry person stirs up conflict, and a hot-tempered person commits many sins.” How many times have your emotions gotten the best of you, and brought out the worst in you? When you are quick to lose your temper, you are going to do something dumb! But your emotions don’t have to do this to you. In fact, God can help you avoid the common pitfalls of losing your cool. If you are having trouble with controlling your anger, admit you have a problem, and ask God to help you. Get it out in the open by talking to other believers about it, and let them help you. Today, prepare your emotions with prayer. Decide this morning to respond with patience, and not react with rage. Keep your focus on the Lord. He will help you stay calm and cool.
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21. (Proverbs 14:3; 15:2; 15:7; 16:23; 18:6-7; 19:1; 23:15-16; 10:20-21; 10:31-32; 11:11; 12:13-14; 13:2; 15:28; 17:4; 15:23; 16:21; 16:24; 25:11; 27:14; 10:19; 12:23; 13:3; 17:28; 18:13; 21:23; 15:1; 17:27; 25:15; 26:28; 28:23; 29:5; 10:18; 11:13; 16:28; 17:9; 18:8; 20:19; 26:20; 11:12; 12:18; 15:4; 16:27; 25:23; 26:2; 17:14; 17:19; 20:3; 22:10; 26:21; 12:19; 12:22; 17:20; 19:5; 19:22; 21:6; 18:20-21) “The Talker” Can you believe all the proverbs that cover the tongue? Whew!! Why so many? That’s easy…The words you choose to say matter. The world may say that “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me”, but that’s not really true. How many times have words hurt you? By the way, Solomon would say that a gentle tongue can break a bone (25:15). Your words can heal, or hurt, others. Your words can spread love, but they also can spread lies. Your words reveal your motives. Your words can develop, or destroy others. Your words can share good news, or spread malicious gossip. So what will you be today? How will you talk to others? How will you talk about others in your workplace or over lunch? How many minutes will you use on your cell phone to promote the positive? What will be the words you choose to use? Will you use your lips to build people up, or tear people down? Read these passages carefully. Let the words of God convict you to improve what you choose to say.
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22. (Proverbs 6:16-19) “The Divisive” They love to stir it up. Their careless words drive people apart. With malice they deride people as they plant seeds of doubt through distorted facts. The more they talk, the worse it gets. The best thing they could do is shut up!! But they don’t… they won’t… because they like to stir the pot! Do you know anyone like this? Solomon puts those who like to stir up conflict on the same list as the prideful, the liar, and the murderer! Wow!! Is creating conflict between others that serious? Yes, it is! How about you? Have you been stirring the pot lately? Would the trail to the source of conflict between other members of your family or your church lead to you? If so, you need to admit it and confess it as soon as possible. What will you do today to build peace and unity in your home and in your church? Today, guard your tongue, and say the kinds of things that will promote love and unity in your community.
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23. (Proverbs 3:9-10; 10:15; 11:4; 11:28; 13:8; 14:20; 15:16; 17:16; 18:11; 18:23; 19:4; 19:6-7; 22:2; 22:7; 23:4-5; 27:7; 28:6; 28:8; 28:11; 28:20-22; 3:27-28; 11:24-26; 13:22; 14:21; 18:16) “The Generous
Who do you know who’s generous? Who do you admire for their generosity? What does a generous person look like? Would you say you are a generous person? Are you consistent with your giving, or is it sporadic? God blesses generosity. He blesses generous people with contentment and a cheerful heart. He blesses generous people with a healthy approach to wealth too. For, you cannot outgive God. Generous people are not preoccupied with making a quick buck. They are focused on how to use what God has given them to help others. Occasionally, they go above and beyond, and will sacrifice. This is the antidote to materialism. For they know, with such sacrifices, they are investing for their eternity. You don’t have to have a lot to be greedy. You don’t have to have a lot to be generous either. Generosity is a matter of the heart. Today, decide that you will be a generous person with what you have now. When you do, you will set into place great habits that will carry over into times when you will have more. May God help you experience that it’s more blessed to give than to receive.
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24. (Proverbs 13:17; 25:13; 12:26; 13:20; 14:7; 17:17; 18:24; 24:1-2) “Friends” From kindergarten to retirement, you form these special relationships throughout your lifetime. Though friendships may come and go, a few are your friends for life. These gifts from God shape your views and values. They influence your attitude and your actions. Here’s Solomon’s take on friendships: Walk with the wise and become wise, for a companion of fools suffers harm (Proverbs 13:20). Solomon is saying you get to choose your friendships, but it’s crucial you choose them wisely. Look…the greatest friendships you can form in your lifetime are godly ones! So… as you review your friendships this morning, who is helping you become ‘wise’ in the Lord? On the other hand, who would you say is having a harmful impact on your attitude and actions? Today, appreciate the godly companions God has given you. Let their love and loyalty nudge you closer to God.
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25. (Proverbs 31) “Her” Peppered with warnings of wayward and adulterous women, the book of Proverbs concludes with a beautiful tribute to a godly woman. There are some great lessons you can learn from the woman described in these verses. She works hard and smart. She wears purple… that means she knows how to handle money with good stewardship. She has a positive influence on her marriage and family. She doesn’t worry or whine; for, she is wise. She knows God will take care of her. She lives her life with confidence. She is resourceful. She is kind and generous. She is a woman of strong convictions. Where do all these features come from? They come from her deep admiration and respect for The Lord. Do you know a woman like this? Today, appreciate and imitate the life of the godly women around you. Let their lives bless you with wisdom.
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26. (Psalm 127) “The Builder” What would you like to accomplish in your lifetime? What would you like to build with your life? Do you want to build a good family? Or would you like to build a good career so that when you look back on your body of work, you won’t have any regrets? Would you like to build a good reputation in your community? How about building a good marriage? Does this interest you? Look… whatever you want to accomplish in life, make sure you start smart by building your life on Jesus Christ. For, if you work at building these things without God’s help, you are wasting your time. Today, take a moment and honestly look at the house (i.e., the life) you are building. How much of the Lord is in your plans? How much is ‘pleasing Him’ in your thoughts? Do you consider what He’d want you to do? How much does His word play a part in your everyday decisions? For, when you include THE Master Builder in your plans, you can be sure that your house will stand firm and secure forever.
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27. (1 Kings 11). “Solomon” Something has happened to Solomon. Something tragic. There was a time when Solomon was fully committed to God. But now he is ignoring all the wisdom God has given him over the years. He has married many foreign women (700 wives); accumulated vast amounts of wealth and many chariots; he sacrifices and builds temples to pagan gods. All of these, God has been clear about. Why? Why is Solomon doing these things? Solomon has no trouble following God’s word until it goes against his own personal desires. This is what leads to his downfall. How about you? Are you okay with God until He challenges a personal preference? Do you find yourself following God’s word, but when it challenges a particular area in your life (a sacred cow), you blow it off with excuses, and ignore what He says? Today, review what is happening to you. Make sure your commitment to God is solid and growing. Rededicate your life to respecting and obeying what God says.
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28. (Ecclesiastes 9:1-12) “The Good the Bad and the Ugly
Solomon makes an observation about life: No matter how good you are, no matter how bad you are, you’re going to die! This is what you have in common with everyone else on earth. Like everyone else on earth, you were created by God; and someday you will return to your creator. Like everyone else, you will live on this earth only one time. Like everyone else on earth, you have in front of you a series of choices. You can either make foolish choices… or wise choices. Solomon is not saying it is a waste of time to be wise. He is only reminding you that you have the same fate as a fool—and that is death! He wants you to see that your choices matter. He wants you to make your life count. So what will you do today? What kinds of choices will you make today? Every one of them matters. Today, look to your creator. Ask God to help you make the kinds of choices that will make your life count.
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29. (Ecclesiastes 2:1-11,17-26, 4:1-16) “The Workaholic
After thousands of years, people still admire and respect those who are industrious and put in long hours of hard work. This kind of dedication is regarded by most as being responsible and wise. But Solomon makes a general observation about toil. He puts it this way: You can labor too much to enjoy your life. Do you know anyone like this? They work one or two jobs at a time… They dedicate so much toil to provide for their family, they seldom get to simply enjoy their family. Their overtime leads to fatigue and overload. Everything is stretched to the limit. Family life breaks down. Hmmm… Is it worth it? What’s so great about having more wealth, if you are too worn out to enjoy it? Solomon says living like this is a meaningless and vicious cycle that will get you nowhere. It’s important that you learn to regulate the labor in your life. Today, ask God to give you the wisdom to balance your labor and your life. Do a little research and see what the Bible says about labor and leisure.
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30. (Ecclesiastes 10:4) “The Angry Man” Well, now you’ve done it. You’ve made someone angry. They write the most awful things about you on Facebook. They send you emails that are teaming with resentment. They give you the ‘stink eye’ when you see them on the street. Why are they doing this? They are mad! They are mad at YOU! You might as well face it. Sooner or later you are going to make someone angry. What do you do with someone like this? Do you fight fire with fire? No… that will only escalate things. Solomon says don’t be a part of someone’s temper tantrum. Refuse to retaliate with more anger. Stay calm. Look what he says: If a ruler’s anger rises against you, do not leave your post; calmness can lay great offenses to rest. It’s hard to keep an argument going if there is only one party acting like a hot head!! Remember, amazing results take place in conflict if one person stays calm. Today, let that person be you.
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31. (Ecclesiastes 3:1-17, 11:7-12:8, 12:13-14) “The Young
Youth… it’s a great time to be alive. A lot of important choices are made when you’re young. The most important choice is: ‘What will you do with your creator?’ For, this choice will make a huge impact on the rest of your life here on earth and in eternity. So… where do you stand with God? With the time you have left on this earth, what will you do to honor His name? Today, make a decision to always remember your creator as you age. Make God your closest relationship… for the rest of your life.
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DailyPeople – June   |   Tim Gill

1. (1 Kings 12:1-33; 2 Chronicles 11:13-14, 16-17; 1 Kings 13:1-32) “Rehoboam” With Solomon dead, there’s a hiccup as his son takes the throne. Rehoboam has a chance to win the people over, but he refuses to listen to wise advice. Instead of lightening the load of his subjects, he increases it. This tears the kingdom apart, and Rehoboam would quickly be known as the last king to rule a united Israel. Look… it’s one thing to seek advice from others – anyone can seek and hear good advice – but to listen and take good advice, that requires humility and courage. Unfortunately, pride prevents one from heeding good advice. Therefore, the stubborn pay a terrible price for their lack of humility. But those who listen to wise counsel avoid a lot of stupid choices that bring the prideful down. How are you doing with seeking and heeding good advice? Would your Christian friends say you have a reputation of asking for advice before a major purchase, a change in employment, a family matter, or a moral dilemma? Do you bounce off others what you are thinking of doing before you do it? Listen… LISTEN!!! Seeking advice is not a sign of weakness. It’s a sign of wisdom! Today, before you do something major, why not ask a few trusted friends what they would do? Ask them what they think God’s word may say. Let others weigh-in… and be blessed by their experience and wisdom.
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2. (1 Kings 13:33-14:18; 2 Chronicles 11:5-12, 18-23; 1 Kings 14:22-15:5; 2 Chronicles 12:1-14:1a) “Abijah” It’s a bitter time in the history of God’s people. Israel is divided into two nations. Nine nations (Israel) make up the north, while only three (Judah) form the south. By the way, they don’t get along… they don’t get along at all. While Jeroboam rules Israel, Abijah, son of Rehoboam, reigns as king of Judah for only 3 years. But during his reign, he dedicates himself to God. This has a profound impact on the rest of the people. For, while Jeroboam plans an aggressive assault on Judah, King Abijah calls on his God. Jeroboam is routed by the army of Judah and loses half a million men on the battlefield! What can you learn from Abijah? 1- You may only be in a place of influence for a short time, so make it count! Whether you are a parent, an older sibling, a school teacher, or a co-worker, God is giving you an opportunity to make a difference. DO IT!!! 2- Your strength comes from the Lord! Over your lifetime, you may accumulate some power, position, or popularity. Don’t let this go to your head! Remember, these aren’t the source of your true strength. Your strength comes from how close you are to God. Get as close as you can!! 3- Leave a legacy that can inspire your family and friends to love The Lord. Build a reputation of being a man/woman of God.
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3. (2 Chronicles 14:1b-17:19; 1 Kings 15:8-16:34, 21:25-26, 22:41-47) “Asa” He rules as King of Judah for 41 years. That’s a long time! Asa serves as an example of what can happen when you continually seek the Lord. As long as Asa sought the Lord, life was good. But when he drifted, he got himself into trouble. Now before you start to wonder if this is true, something needs to be clarified. Seeking God doesn’t guarantee that everything will be rosy and peachy-keen; but a life devoted to God will give you stability and security in times of trouble. Asa wasn’t insulated from hardship or trouble simply because he prayed all the time… and neither will you. Seeking God is not some kind of good luck charm that’s designed to fend off temptations, trouble, or turmoil. But when you walk with God, you can be sure that He will be at your side to help you. So keep seeking the Lord. Today, face your troubles with God, and find security and peace.
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4. (1 Kings 17:1-19:21) “Elijah” The exploits of Elijah rival any in scripture. Through this troublemaker, God raises the dead, brings fire from heaven, and makes it rain after 7 years of drought! Yet Elijah was like anyone else (James 5). He has a lot in common with you. Elijah would often encounter moments of fear, confusion, suffering, and discouragement as he followed the Lord. Sound familiar? Being a believer didn’t make him superhuman. Trusting God didn’t keep him from danger either. He suffered through times of drought and danger. You cannot read about what happened at Mt. Carmel and miss this. Elijah gives you a superb model of how to trust God in difficult times. Are you going through the ringer right now? Are you suffering through difficulty as you follow the Lord? If so, don’t give up. Don’t quit! Keep calling on God’s help. He will get you through whatever you are facing. He’s determined to change you and use you to accomplish His purpose. It may look bleak at times, but your God will come through for you. Today, be assured that God loves you and will reward your faith in Him.
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5. (1 Kings 20:1-43, 22:1, 21:1-24, 21:27-29, 22:51, 22:2-6, 10-12, 7-9, 13-28; 2 Chronicles 18:2-3) “Ahab” Someone once said, “If God is not allowed to rule over us, then our enemies shall command us. A rebel to God is a slave to everything else.” How true! This is Ahab! His total disregard for God’s sovereignty leads him to blunder after blunder. He knew Baal could not help him, and that God would not help him. He would rather compromise and cave as a beggar to save his life, rather than have the guts to be a King and save God’s people! Now before you shake your head in disgust over Ahab, take a good look at how you are operating on this planet. Is God really in charge? What, or better yet, who is calling the shots in your life? When facing a decision, how much is God’s will in the picture? Remember: A rebel to God is a slave to everything else. Ahab would finally depend on God, and his small army of 7000 would rout the 130,000 of Ben-Hadad. Today, recognize the sovereignty of God. Make it clear to your family and friends that God is in charge of your life.
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6. (1 Kings 22:29-36; 2 Chronicles 19:1-3; 1 Kings 22:37-40; 22:52-53; 2 Kings 3:4-5; 2 Chronicles 19:4-11, 20:1-30, 35-37; 1 Kings 22:48-49; 2 Kings 1:2-18; 3:1-3) “Jehoshaphat” He was a pretty good King, but had a few weaknesses. You see, Jehoshaphat loved the Lord… but he had a blind spot; it had to do with the kind of company he kept. To be honest, some of the friendships Jehoshaphat had were with… well… some pretty shady characters. Sure, God wants you to love all people; after all, He does. But He doesn’t want you partnering with worldly folks who can bring you all kinds of trouble that you don’t need. This seems to be Jehoshaphat’s problem. For example, his relationship with Ahab nearly gets him killed! What about you? Do you have a blind spot when it comes to your friendships? Do you have a few friends who are a bad influence on you? Today, do an honest inventory of the friendships you keep. Are there any on the list you need to address? Today, have the courage to radically adjust the bad relationships you have, and develop the kinds of friendships that will bring you closer to God.
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7. (2 Kings 2:1-25; 4:1-44; 8:1-2; 6:1-7) “Elisha” One by one they come up to Elisha. They ask him, “Do you know that your master will be taken today?” Elisha always replies, “Yes, I know.” Elisha recalls the day Elijah placed his cloak on his shoulders as he plowed in his field. This was Elijah’s symbolic gesture of selecting Elisha to one day replace him. Then, in the blink of an eye… it’s time! Elijah is taken up into heaven and is never seen again by his disciple. This is the endless cycle in the Kingdom of God. One generation of disciples replaces another. The willing carry on the will of God on earth. God’s kingdom on earth depends on this process! Do you know that your mentors will one day be taken? One day, it will be you that God uses to carry his will into the future. In fact, it’s already happening! Today, it’s your turn to take up the mission. God isn’t waiting for you to have things ‘just right’ before you start. Your mission doesn’t begin after you secure a career, raise your kids, or pay off the house. No… It’s now!! Right now!!! God is depending on you RIGHT NOW!!!! So…. Can He depend on you? Will you accept His mission today?
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8. (2 Kings 8:16-17; 2 Chronicles 21:2-4; 2 Kings 3:6-27; 2 Chronicles 20:34, 21:1, 21:6-20) “Jehoram” He is the son of Jehoshaphat. But he was nothing like his father. He married the daughter of Ahab and Jezebel! Crazy, huh? His wife was a carbon copy of her mother. This foolish arrangement corrupted Jehoram and almost destroyed the house of David. Jehoram is an example of one who marries poorly. Ask any couple that is ‘unequally yoked’, and they will tell you that rushing into a marriage with an unbeliever or a lukewarm believer is begging for trouble down the road. Jehoram wasted his life! When he died, no one would mourn for him, and his wife would quickly be forgotten. Only by God’s kindness did the house of David survive such a vile and wicked couple. Are you married? What kind of impact will you make in God’s Kingdom? Are you single? Choose wisely who you partner with. Make a decision that your marriage will make a positive impact in God’s Kingdom.
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9. (Obadiah 1-21) “Edomites” They are the arch rivals of Israel. The Edomites were the descendants of Esau, Jacob’s twin brother. This explains why, for generations, Edom’s bitter hatred for Israel, (Jacob’s descendants), would last until the Edomites and the Israelites are utterly destroyed by Rome in 70AD. Yet in the book of Obadiah, God gives a stern warning about gloating over your brother’s hardships. Read what God says: 12“You should not gloat over your brother in the day of his misfortune, nor rejoice over the people of Judah in the day of their destruction, nor boast so much in the day of their trouble. 13You should not march through the gates of my people in the day of their disaster, nor gloat over them in their calamity in the day of their disaster, nor seize their wealth in the day of their disaster. 14You should not wait at the crossroads to cut down their fugitives, nor hand over their survivors in the day of their trouble. 15The day of the Lord is near for all nations. As you have done, it will be done to you; your deeds will return upon your own head.”
Do you ever gloat over the misfortune/hardship of others? Do you enjoy hearing about people getting what you believe they deserve? This is a cruel way to live. God reminds us, through Obadiah, that the day of the Lord is near for all nations. He’s talking about all people who lived then, (during the tumultuous times of King Jehoram), and all who live now. This includes you! When you hear of misfortune happening to others, including your enemies, be humble and grateful that God has spared you of a similar misery. Be grateful for the goodness of God… because God’s goodness is the only thing that is keeping you from getting what you deserve.
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10. (2 Kings 6:8-23) “God’s Army” They are surrounded by a great and powerful army! You may be assuming that this juggernaut is from Aram, but it’s not. For, a strike force of fiery chariots, too numerous to calculate, surrounds Elisha, his servant, AND Aram’s soldiers too.
16 “Don’t be afraid,” the prophet answered. “Those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” 17 And Elisha prayed, “Open his eyes, Lord, so that he may see.” Then the Lord opened the servant’s eyes, and he looked and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.
You may find this hard to believe, but if God could open your eyes, you would see an awesome army surrounding you! For those who are with you are from the throne of God. They have been there since you made your commitment to God. They are more powerful than the problem you are now facing. They will never retreat!! So press on! Keep trusting the Lord of hosts. For, God will surely protect you… and ultimately give you victory!!
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11. (2 Kings 8:7-10:17; 2 Chronicles 22:1-9) “Jehu” It’s a dark time for Israel. Through corruption and murder, the family of Ahab has wrestled their way to the top, and led Israel astray. The whole nation is corrupt with idol worship because of this family. God’s people are no longer zealous to follow Him. This leads God to appoint a new king to confront the evil in Israel. He appoints a zealous man by the name of Jehu to rid this evil family from the face of the earth. Now, you may find the actions of Jehu a bit radical and extreme, but something drastic had to be done to end the evil influence of this family. There is a lesson here: You cannot mess around with sin! You cannot take a light approach when it comes to your sin. For, when you begin to compromise with your sin, it will overcome and defeat you. You have to get serious and radical with it; there’s no other way! What sins are you struggling with now? Today, let your zeal for God give you a radical approach to your sin. Ask God to give you the courage to put to death whatever is sinful in your life (Col 3:10).
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12. (2 Chronicles 22:10-23:21; 2 Kings 10:18-12:3) “Jehosheba” Mentioned only briefly in the Bible, Jehosheba’s contribution to God’s plan of redemption is priceless. Jehosheba, the half-sister of Athaliah (The ambitious and evil daughter of Jezebel), secretly worked out a plot to save a male heir (Jehosheba’s nephew) to the throne of David. This courageous and selfless act would prevent the end of David’s bloodline, and make it possible for The Messiah to come to earth. Think about it: No one can thwart the will of God!! What are you doing to preserve the Kingdom of God? What will you do with people younger than you to secure God’s plan of redemption for future generations? Your acts of courage and faith don’t have to be as daring as Jehosheba’s. You can offer your home to the teen ministry. You can volunteer to help in a children’s ministry or local school. Why not volunteer to help with church camp? You can also provide a godly role model for the next generation. God needs more believers like Jehosheba in His kingdom. Will you be one of them?
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13. (Joel 1-3) “Joel” Joel sees a vast army on the march. They move methodically through the cities and the mountain range, never breaking ranks. The destruction they leave behind is overwhelming. Is this another nation? Could this be Egypt? Could this army be the Assyrians? Who is this army? Who is leading this army? The Army is a horde of locusts, and God is leading the charge. Joel connects this natural disaster to God’s response to Israel’s sin. Not all disasters are connected to God’s wrath. Some natural disasters simply remind you of the sovereignty and might of God. Some can drive you to your knees before the Lord. But make no mistake about this locust plague; for, this humbled God’s people. This army of grasshoppers reminds Israel of how helpless and vulnerable they really are. And so it is today: Violent thunderstorms, tornadoes, earthquakes, droughts, heat waves, and blizzards remind you that you’re not as tough as you may assume. You are not in charge as much as you think you are. Today, let these natural disasters remind you of how helpless you are, and how much you need your Lord.
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14. (2 Chronicles 24:1-3; 2 Kings 12:4-5; 2 Chronicles 24:4-5; 2 Kings 10:32-35; 13:1-2; 12:6-16; 2 Chronicles 24:6-22) “Jehoiada” The last thing you would expect a seven year old to be doing would be ruling a nation. But this is exactly what Joash is doing. By the way, he does a great job as King for most of his life. What is his secret? Joash did what was right in the sight of God as long as Jehoiada was at his side. Jehoiada gave Joash his spiritual edge. This redemptive relationship provided much needed direction and support for the young King. But as soon as Jehoiada is out of the picture, Joash’s life begins to crumble. The young king would turn away from God, and fall prey to the idol worship of his day. Who is helping you stay on track? Who is giving you a spiritual edge through their love and guidance? Today, appreciate the redemptive relationships God has given you. Let these “Jehoiadas” help you follow your Lord.
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15. (2 Kings 14:1-6; 13:22-25; 2 Chron. 25:5-24; 2 Kings 14:15-16; 23-24) “Amaziah” Failure may test your faith, but success will test your character. This is exactly what happens to Amaziah. After God blesses him with a great victory, his success goes to his head. The teachable heart that once brought him such success, is eventually replaced with such pride and arrogance that he no longer will seriously consider God’s counsel. Amaziah’s prideful blindspot brings him down!! How about you? Are you allowing a little success to go to your head? Have you forgotten the true source of your success? Are you in tune with your weaknesses? Don’t let your blessings go to your head! Today, count your blessings with a humble heart.
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16. (Jonah 1:1-4:11; 2 Kings 13:5; 14:25-27; 13:6) “Jonah
What a stubborn guy! Why is Jonah fighting what God wants him to do? Jonah stands as a classic example of how pride and rebellion lead to disaster. For, the more Jonah resisted God, the worse his life got. Down and down he goes… down to Joppa… down into the cabin of the boat… down into the sea… down the throat of a great fish… down to the ‘root of the mountains’. But God gives Jonah another chance. Through these consequences, God gives Jonah an opportunity to turn to Him. When Jonah calls out to God, He raises him back up once again. How is life going for you? Are you sinking? Do you feel like you’ve been losing ground? Decide you are no longer going to resist your Lord. Trust Him! Turn to God, and watch Him turn things around.
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17. (Hosea 1:1-3:5) “Hosea” He is married to a prostitute! She is still sleeping around. Yet Hosea loves his wife and continues to be with her. You may wonder why Hosea doesn’t leave her. The children she bears are not his!! Why does he stay with her? He stays with her because he loves her… This is the picture of what is going on between God and Israel. For, Israel is like Gomer. Israel is like a prostitute. God loves his people. Like a devoted husband, God provides and protects His wife. But Israel shows their appreciation for God’s devotion by sleeping around with other lovers. Other lovers… Hmmm… There are a host of other lovers trying to get your attention. These lovers come in all shapes and sizes. They can be everything from a paycheck to a pleasure. These lovers will entice you away from your Lord. And when this happens, your God stays with you! Yes, He will discipline you; but remember, it’s because He is in love with you. He hopes you will come to your senses and come back to Him. Are you secretly sleeping around? What lover is enticing you to be unfaithful to God? Today, admit where you are being unfaithful, and come back into the loving arms of your God.
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18. (Hosea 4:1-9:17) “The Unfaithful Priest” Israel is in trouble… BIG TROUBLE! For, since Jeroboam, the priesthood has been corrupt. If you recall, Jeroboam set up a pagan religion that mixed-in a little Judaism with some twisted worldly values. He made places of worship for his new religion in two cities, (Dan & Bethel), and allowed some of the lowest people outside of the tribe of the Levites to serve as priests (2 Kings 12:31). They watered everything down, and would reject God and His word. This is why Hosea is rebuking Israel. When you take a good look at modern Christianity, you can see the influence of the world. Today, many churches work to compete with the world like a tourist attraction. Many churches have become nothing more than a slick ‘mini mall’, offering more of what people want, rather than what they need. More and more churches are more interested in blending in with the rest of the world, than standing up and out for God! These are the types of Christians who refer less and less to the word of God, and more to social gimmicks. Whose fault is this? It’s the priests’ fault! It’s everyone’s fault! And God is not pleased! Today, ask yourself if you are part of this problem. Are you allowing and promoting a type of Christianity that consists of a little Jesus along with some twisted pagan values? What will you do to make your church more faithful to God? What will you do to raise Godly values in a pagan world?
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19. (2 Chronicles 26:6-21) “Uzziah” He had an army of over a quarter of a million men. He was an inventor, and highly successful; so successful, his fame quickly spread. But Uzziah had one huge problem. He had a big head! He started believing everything people were saying about him. His pride eventually destroyed him. Don’t let a few successes go to YOUR head too. Give God the credit. For, you know, down deep, that it is God who is behind your success.
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20. (Amos 1:1-4:13) “Neighbors” You can almost imagine Israel grinning with delight as they hear the condemnation of their arch enemies—Damascus, Moab, Tyre and Edom! And when God starts to condemn Judah… well, they are more excited than ever!! For, they cannot stand to be in the same room with their brothers and sisters to the south. But then God says something that makes Israel’s hair stand on end. God starts to condemn them! God lists their sins like He does with everyone else. Israel discovers that they ain’t so hot after all. They are just like everyone else. Do you see this fact? Do you realize that the worst sinners you know have something in common with you? Like them, you fall short of God’s glory. You are just as much a sinner as anyone else. Today, let these truths humble you, and cause you to look at others with greater compassion.
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21. (Amos 5:1-7:9; 8:1-9:15) “The Complacent” Are you prone to sit on your hands when something needs to be done? Do people know that you deeply care? Something sickening is happening in Israel. The people have grown complacent! They don’t care!! Israel is more interested in their own comfort than in comforting others. Now understand… Israel is very ‘religious’. They regularly bring their sacrifices and songs to God. But God is not impressed. He’s disgusted! He doesn’t want to hear any more of their songs. The aroma of their sacrifices is a stench in His nostrils. God is not as interested in how good you sing or how spiritual you may appear. What He wants is for you to love others like He does. When you turn a blind eye or a deaf ear to the needs of others, God is disgusted. God would tell Israel that their lounging would soon end. This is the fate of those who are indifferent to the needs of others. What will you do today? Will you step-in and love others? Today, ask God to break your heart open, so you can see the needs of others… and serve.
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22. (Amos 7:10-17) “Amos” At first, he doesn’t appear that impressive. He admits he used to shepherd flocks of sheep, and take care of a few trees. But Amos decides to leave this nomadic lifestyle and become a prophet of God. Pedigree has nothing to do with whether God can use you or not. All you have to do is be willing to take the mission He assigns to you. So be on your toes! God may give you an opportunity to share His word with others. Today, be daring and take the first opportunity God gives you to share His love and wisdom with others.
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23. (Isaiah 1:1-26) “The Screw-up” The book of Isaiah begins with a strong reprimand. Isaiah mentions how animals know their master and place. But the people of God have forgotten both. Like rebellious children, Israel stubbornly lives any way they want to. This gets them into so much trouble it appears hopeless. Have you ever felt like that? You’re not going to let anyone tell you how to live your life. After all, you are a grown up. But you discover that your ‘freedom’ and independence has a high price. Pride and stubbornness mess up your friendships, your health, your finances, and your future! What do you do when you realize you’ve made a big mess of things? You turn to God! That’s what you do! For, God promises that you cannot screw things up so much that He can’t help you. He promises that if your sins are like stubborn stains as deep as scarlet, (that’s a tough stain), He can get it out. He can make your life as white as snow. Praise God!! All you have to do is humble yourself and come to God. Today, bring your screw-ups to God. Let Him help you to change. He can help you clean up your mess. For, He is the God of another chance!
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24. (Isaiah 6:1-13) “Isaiah” What are you doing with the mission God has given you? What will you do when The Lord nudges you to action? This is what is happening to Isaiah. God calls Isaiah to speak to others. It doesn’t matter that they don’t want to listen. It doesn’t matter that they are hard-hearted. What matters is that Isaiah is faithful to God’s call. That’s what God expects of you. It doesn’t matter if your coworkers are listening or not. It doesn’t matter if your family is open to it or not. What matters is that God wants you to be faithful to His call. Will you be faithful? Will you trust The Lord enough to do His mission? Who knows…? Maybe a little boldness on your part can open a door to share the good news.
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25. (Micah 1-2) “Micah” What is happening to God’s people? They no longer resemble the faithful nation that came out of captivity into the Promised Land. They worship the pagan gods and idols of the land. Hmmm… Without realizing it, they are in bondage again! Right? It’s easy for this to happen to believers today. Calling oneself a Christian can have a host of different meanings. These can include definitions like: occasionally attending a church; merely believing there is a God; claiming spirituality based on family heritage; or simply being good to others. But you can do all these, and not truly be a Christian. Israel did all these, but their hearts were far away from God. Where would you say you are? Are you a Christian in name only? Or is being a Christian much more serious for you? This is what Micah is confronting! In graphic language he breaks through the political correctness of his day. Micah makes it clear that God is fed up with ‘religious posers’. God wants more than lip service or liturgical rituals. He wants you!! ALL of you!!! Does God have all of you? Or does He only get parts of you when it’s convenient? Do you honestly think He is going to accept this from you? Today, identify and abandon the gods/idols that are dividing your devotion to God. Rededicate yourself to God… and be blessed!
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26. (Micah 3:1-5:15) “The Assyrians” The Assyrian Empire had a reputation for being heartless and cruel. There are historical accounts of the Assyrians slaughtering whole cities, and throwing the bodies into a nearby river to block its flow. This sent a terrifying message to those downstream. They were known for cutting off the hands of their victims and nailing them on the city gates to intimidate any who dared to enter. When Israel rejected and rebelled against God, He had to do something drastic. God would use this ruthless nation to break the pride in Israel, and take them away into captivity. Sometimes God will use a painful experience to get your attention. He does not do this out of hate, but out of great love for you. Are you going through a trial at this time? If so, could God be trying to get your attention? Today, let God’s loving discipline work holiness into your life. Let God’s wrath bring about a serious desire to please and honor Him.
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27. (Micah 6:1-8) “The Humble” Thousands of sacrifices are being offered to God. Gallons of olive oil are heaved toward heaven. The annual tithe is now brought every three days. But God is not pleased! Are you kidding? Why not? Because God wants something else. Yes, God still wants sacrifice; but what good is it if your heart is somewhere else? You see, Israel was sacrificing to make up for their sin. It was like they were striking a deal with God. They were hoping, when God would see their sacrifices, He would look the other way as they lived in complacency, selfishness, and immorality. And offering their own children wouldn’t change the fact that God was not pleased with His people. You can give all the money you can, utter all the prayers you want, sing until your lungs give out, but that won’t make any difference if you leave God’s presence, and treat people like crap!! So… what does God want, you might ask? Well, He still wants sacrifices, but He wants you to walk with Him every day in humility. Hmmm… Humility… That means not always having things your way. Humility treats others fairly, with kindness. Humility extends mercy to people who fail you. After all, did He not extend His mercy to you? Today, before you utter a prayer; before you write a check; before you sing a song toward heaven… first, offer your heart to God. Sacrifice your will for His. For, this is what God wants from you more than anything else.
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28. (2 Kings 17:1-26) “Hoshea” Think about it… Years of complacency has led to this. Hoshea would be the last king of Israel. At the end of his nine year reign, Assyria would come and capture his nation and take his people far away. All that would be left in the land were a few stragglers and some wild animals roaming about. There are a couple of points that can be made from these few verses. 1- You can wear out the patience of God. Israel has been rebellious for generations. Hoshea was no more than a puppet King who served Shalmaneser, King of Assyria. God would use him and the rest of Israel to serve as a warning to Judah of what can happen when you disregard The Lord. He sends King Sargon to begin the destruction of the Northern Kingdom. Sargon would take nearly 30,000 people from the city of Samaria alone! Who is God using as an object lesson to warn you? 2- God will always give you a chance to come back to Him. It’s here in Samaria that a people of mixed birth would emerge. Through the brutality and the hardship of God’s discipline, a race of people would one day open their hearts to another King—Jesus Christ. You may slip… you may walk away… you may screw it all up; but if you turn back to God, He will take you back! Praise God!
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29. (Isaiah 7:1-9:21) “Shear-Jashub” Out of the 12 tribes of Israel, only three remainJudah, Benjamin, and a few Levites make up the Southern Kingdom. God’s patience is again wearing thin. This time Judah is beginning to grow indifferent and unfaithful like their brothers and sisters in Israel. The same fate is before them as was with the Northern Kingdom. Isaiah goes to meet with Ahaz, the current king of Judah. It’s interesting that Isaiah takes along his son. Why is this interesting? Well, the boy’s name is Shear-Jashub. His name literally means “a remnant shall return”. His presence offered two messages to Ahaz: It was to warn him of the disaster ahead, and, at the same time, give him hope. It didn’t work! Ahaz would stubbornly continue to reject God and go his own way. Years later, in 586 BC, Jerusalem would fall to the Babylonians. But it’s important to remember, through all this, that God IS good! He promises, through the presence of Shear-Jashub, that God’s people would one day bounce back! A remnant of the people would one day return and resettle in the land. This would begin to happen during the time of Nehemiah. Things like this still happen today. God’s people go through setbacks, hardships, and trials. Sometimes whole churches are stopped dead in their tracks. It can look pretty hopeless; but be reassured of this: God will bring back a remnant of faithful people! There’s a wave of committed people who are coming to take the kingdom of God forward again. Will you be part of that remnant? Today, decide to be one of the faithful few who will take the gospel to the world! Decide right now, as you mix into the world, not to blend-in with the world. It’s time to be courageous! It’s time to be strong! It’s time to be a true follower of God!
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30. (2 Chronicles 28:1-21) “Obed” God’s people have been divided into two separate nations for a very, very long time. Israel is to the north, and Judah is to the south. Like the Hatfield’s and McCoy’s, they vigorously fought for years, not only against their pagan enemies, but each other. How sad and embarrassing it is when God’s people are fighting with one another. How awful it is when people take pleasure in pounding one another into the ground!! So, what does God do when His people can’t get along? Does He choose a side? Apparently not! For, God expected both Israel and Judah to submit to Him! You see, they have a bigger problem than the conflict they have between each other. Their real problem – their real conflict – is with God! So when Israel attacks Judah and takes thousands of their people to be their slaves, God speaks through a prophet by the name of Obed. Obed explains how ungodly it is for Israel to take people from Judah and make them their slaves. Obed tries to get Israel to see their own sin, instead of the sin of others. So, what do the people of Israel do? The people of Israel respond by being kind and generous to their captives, and sending them home. Oh how we need people like Obed today!! These are the kinds of people who remind those in conflict to be merciful and kind with one another. What are you doing to make peace between God’s people? As you fight with your brother or sister in Christ, does it ever occur to you that you may have as much or more sin in your life than they do? You can try to justify your ungodly response to those who anger you, but it won’t work. Today, make sure your desires and dialogue are full of mercy. Let God’s forgiveness of you temper the way you treat those who have hurt you.
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DailyPeople – July   |   Tim Gill

1. (Isaiah 34:1-4, 14:24-27, 15:1-9, 16:1-14, 17:1-14) “The Moabites
Based on Lot’s (Abraham’s nephew) incest with his daughters, the Moabites were blood kin to Israel (Gen 19). But even blood kin could not avoid or deter the judgement of God. Moab would lead Israel into idol worship, and so become a bitter enemy of God’s people. But Isaiah has compassion on these people. His heart seems to break as he contemplates the horrible consequences of Moab’s disobedience. Does it humble and break your heart when you hear of the hardships of those who are prideful and disobedient to God? Or does it bring you pleasure to see people get what they deserve? God does not delight in punishing people. He mourns when the pagan perishes. Today, let the display of God’s judgment on the ungodly serve as a warning… and may it break your heart.
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2. (2 Kings 16:7-20; 2 Chronicles 28:22-27; 2 Kings 18:1-8) “Ahaz
Fear is a powerful emotion. Facing danger will strongly challenge your faith in God’s power. This is what’s happening to one of the worst kings in the history of Judah. Ahaz is being bullied by Israel and Damascus to join forces against Assyria; but Ahaz is having none of it. To get these guys off his back, Ahaz strikes a deal with, of all people, Tiglath-Pileser (King of Assyria) to help him. What a blunder! Judah goes from the frying pan into the fire. Now, under pressure from Assyria, Ahaz starts building pagan altars all over Jerusalem. He takes the bronze altar (The true altar of God) for himself, but it is useless now. For, he has surrendered his relationship with God for another. What do you do when you feel pressured to compromise your faith in God? So, what’s wrong with bending the rules a little in order to avoid ridicule or rejection, you might ask? Plenty! Once you start making deals, you will continue until you have no convictions at all. The other problem is obvious—God doesn’t work that way. He expects to be first. Ahaz may have dodged a bullet for now, but only for a little while. His family – his nation – would eventually fall. Today, take a good look at your faith. Are you compromising your faith in God to save your skin? What will happen to your family and friends if you cave in? Whatever you are facing, continue to trust in the power of your God.
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3. (Isaiah 13:1-22, 21:1-10) “Babylon” There’s no doubt that God rules the nations!! He would use Babylon to defeat Assyria. Later He would use the Medes to defeat Babylon, and deliver His people from exile. All this would take place in the next 175 years. As you look at world events today, you may find yourself wondering what is going to happen to America. Will our nation be around forever? That’s hard to say. Based on Bible history and patterns… probably not. One thing is sure: God will have His way with the nations. If He wants to use another nation to discipline America, who can stop Him? And what of His people? What will happen to them? As painful as it might get in the future, God’s people will prevail!! In the meantime, keep trusting God. Keep sharing your faith with others. Keep doing ‘good’ in your community. And if the Lord were to return in the middle of it all, let Him find you focused on His Kingdom!!
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4. (2 Chronicles 29:3-31:21) “Hezekiah” Imagine a thick layer of dust covering the articles inside the Temple. It’s been a long time since the sound of worship and the aroma of burning incense has come from this holy place. God has been neglected and forgotten. The people have lost their way. But as soon as Hezekiah takes the throne, he gives orders to clean out the Temple. He commands that the Temple be made holy. He orders the Levites back to their stations. God is going to be worshiped once again! Quickly, the priests start offering bulls, rams, and grain on God’s alter. Why? Why the urgency? Well, before the people can restore their lives, they must restore their relationship with The Lord!! It makes sense, doesn’t it? What would you like to change in your life? What’s broken in your life? What would you like to restore? Before you start on anything, Hezekiah encourages you to start at the beginning. Start with your relationship with God. Your success will be determined by this initial step. For, God blesses those who seek Him. He grants success to those who get serious about following Him.
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5. (Isaiah 32:1-8; Isaiah 35:1-10) “A New King” Israel will soon be no more. Her rebellion has caught up with her. Over the years, a parade of Kings has passed by, ruling God’s people. Some of these kings ruled with great humility, while the majority of these ‘anointed ones’ ruled foolishly. But God makes a promise to His people. He promises that a new King will eventually emerge, deliver, and rule with great wisdom. He will richly bless His people. Who is this new King? It’s Jesus Christ. Today, Jesus reigns as King of Kings. His word is very powerful. When He gives a command, it must be obeyed. He is very rich too; but King Jesus would give it all up to make you rich with righteousness. This is what King Jesus did. He laid down his life to save yours. Today, surrender to your New King, Jesus Christ. Give Him your allegiance and service.
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6. (Isaiah 28) “The Farmer” He carefully breaks up the dirt… He knows how essential it is to occasionally disturb the soil if the plants are going to grow healthy and mature. So he is very careful… He is careful to not crush the crop as he breaks up the ground. This is the picture of God as He disciplines His people in Israel. Like a good farmer, God will occasionally break your heart. He will disrupt your life in order to help you grow and mature. He doesn’t seek to crush you, but to break you open to bring out the good stuff. If you are now going through a tough time, remember that The Farmer has your best interests in mind. He is planning ahead. He works to bring out a harvest of righteousness in you. So stay calm… let God work… trust Him… He knows what He is doing! For, a great harvest is in your future… if you simply don’t give up.
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7. (Isaiah 22:15-25) “Shebna & Eliakim” You’ve probably never heard of these two fellas. It’s not surprising. They are only mentioned a handful of times in the Bible. Who are these two guys? What are they doing here in Isaiah 22? Well, Shebna was the steward of the King. He was the guy who was in charge of the King’s property. He also managed all the affairs of the King. The thing is, Shebna was doing a lousy job as the King’s manager. So Eliakim would soon replace Shebna as head steward. But Isaiah is talking about something more than a managerial shake up. Shebna and Eliakim represent two groups of people in God’s Kingdom. Shebna represents the unfaithful in Israel, while Eliakim represents the faithful few. You see, there are people in God’s kingdom who do not take care of THE KING’S matters. Like Shebna, they slowly grow haughty and indifferent, with misplaced ambition. Life in the kingdom has become more about pleasing themselves than about pleasing their King. Like Shebna and the rest of Israel, they tragically lose everything they’ve worked so hard for. So what does God do? God raises up a new steward… a faithful steward. He raises up people who will serve THE KING instead of themselves! Like Eliakim, this remnant – these faithful few – seeks God’s kingdom first. They are most concerned about what their King wants done. They pass this conviction on to their kids and friends. God richly rewards them too. Which of these guys best represents you today? Are you more like Shebna… or Eliakim?
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8. (2 Kings 17:3-41; 2 Kings 18:9-11) “Jeroboam” What you do today will make an impact on future generations. The end is near for God’s people. God has had enough of His people rejecting and rebelling against Him. Assyrian armies rally along the borders of Israel. They come to take Israel away. Years later, Judah will fall to Babylonia. This tragic end can be traced all the way back to King Jeroboam. It was his rebellion that started the whole process. Make no mistake…. the life you lead will have an impact on your family, friends, and community. You may assume that you are not making any difference; but you are! Today, accept your significance on this earth. Let God use you to pass on to the next generation the kinds of values and conduct that will please God. Pass on something positive. Touch the future by living a godly life today.
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9. (Isaiah 30) “Rahab, The Do-Nothing” What a name for Judah: Rahab, the Do-Nothing. This name has nothing to do with the Rahab in Joshua 2. Isaiah is referring to a mythical monster by the name of Rahab. Translated literally, it reads: “The Big Mouth That Does Nothing”. This is what has happened to Judah. As Assyria’s armies amass on their boarders, Judah is getting nervous. They know deep inside that they have rebelled against God, and will face tragic consequences. As a last-ditch effort, Judah appeals to Egypt, instead of God, for deliverance. It would be a huge mistake! For, Sennacherib would soon invade and take Egypt! What do you trust in times of trouble? It’s foolish to trust in the things of this earth. Trusting in anything else but God will only leave you disappointed. The things of this earth can do nothing to save you. For, God is the only one who will deliver you in times of peril. What are you going through today? Who will you trust in times of trouble? Will you trust the stock market? Will you trust your government? Will you simply trust in yourself? Or… will you trust The Lord? Today, trust the Lord to take care of you.
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10. (2 Chronicles 32:1-23, 25-33; 2 Kings 19:1-37) “Sennacherib” 
Nations have fallen at his feet. Why would Judah be any different? Sennacherib arrogantly boasts of his many victories. But this powerful King isn’t facing just anyone. This time, Sennacherib meets his match. For the first time in his life, the mighty King Sennacherib faces the armies of God, and is soundly defeated. He would return to Assyria humiliated and whipped. Soon after his return, he would be assassinated by his own sons. Hmmm… Nothing can stand against God. Nothing!! Today, face your problems with great confidence. For, no matter how powerful your hardships or obstacles may appear… no matter how impossible your situation may seem, remember that they are impotent before your God. Today, put your trust in God… and find great victory!
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11. (2 Kings 20:21-21:9; 21:16, 21:10-21:15)? “Manasseh” 
These are dark times for Judah. After Hezekiah dies, his son Manasseh takes the throne. He is only 12 years old. For the next 55 years, Manasseh reintroduces Baal and Asherah worship to the people. He goes so far as to build a couple of altars to these so-called “gods” in the temple courts, and eventually sacrifices his own son! God is furious!! God would wipe Jerusalem off the map like one who wipes off a dirty dish. Each generation must decide what they are going to do with God. What are you doing with God? How important is the Kingdom of God to you? Will the church be around after you die? Manasseh serves as a warning to each generation. Today, God has given you the opportunity and responsibility to follow His will. Will you follow God today? Choose wisely!! For, the future of God’s kingdom rests on your decision.
12. (Isaiah 40:1-41:10) “The Shepherd” He doesn’t push the herd. He doesn’t beat them into submission. That’s what a butcher would do. But a shepherd is different. A shepherd gently leads his sheep. At times, he gathers his sheep in his arms and carries them close to his heart. This is how God is with you. He doesn’t force His will on you. He doesn’t whip you with guilt when you get out of line. If you were to wander off, He would search for you until He found you. Why? You are one of His own. You are His prized possession. He’s not about to lose you! Like a good shepherd, He is willing to lay down His life to protect you. By the way… HE DID! Why would you ever consider leaving His fold? Today, ponder the many ways The Lord shepherds you in His love. As His sheep, listen for His call… and quickly follow.
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13. (Isaiah 43:1-7) “Sons and Daughters” God makes a promise to His children. Come Hell or High water, God promises to always be with them. God makes the same promise to you. If you’re going through some difficulty, He walks beside you to give you strength. If you’re going through despair, God promises to stand beside you and offer comfort. If you’re going through something painful, God is there to bring healing. Nothing you face can get so bad that it will destroy you. For, God is with you. God will go through death with you. He will never leave you. Today, you have a friend who sticks close to you. You have a Father who deeply loves you. You have a friend who understands, and has your back.
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14. (Isaiah 44) “God’s Prized Possession” Isaiah paints a beautiful picture of the future of God’s people. There will be a day when all His people will return to Him. In that day, He will nourish His people with water and spirit. Isn’t that what Jesus brought? You are living in the days Isaiah spoke of. It’s awesome, isn’t it? This means you are a fulfillment of God’s promise. This makes you God’s prized possession! Why? He made you in His image. He loves you more than anything else. He gave His own son to buy you back. He has chosen you!! So, you belong to God. Today, love your life in a way that reflects God’s ownership of you. Remind those you interact with today, that there is a God who cares about them. Remind them that they are His prized possession too.
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15. (Isaiah 45:14-48:15) “Cyrus” What or who is God using to change your life? God will use anything and anyone to get your attention. In the case of Israel, God is using the King of Persia to confirm His omnipotence and omniscience to His people. Cyrus would crush Babylon, and take Israel too. Why? It seems God’s people have grown skeptical of God’s power and wisdom. They are turning to other things – man made things – for their happiness. But God reminds them that their things are useless. He tells them that He is nothing like a carved stick of wood that sits idle on a shelf. For, God cares enough to actually speak to His creation. God reveals His wonderful truth to His people. They are never in the dark. Neither are you! If you listen closely, God speaks to you! He wants you to have wisdom. He wants you to be secure. God wants you to know the truth. And His promises? Ahhh… they are very good! God is active right now, and working in your life too. There is nothing idle about your God. You can be sure that He is working with an eternal purpose in mind. If needed, He will send a ‘King Cyrus’ to wake you up and get you back on track. How is God trying to get your attention? How is God working on you? What is He wanting to develop in you? Today, give Him your attention… and let Him work.
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16. (Isaiah 48:16-50:11) “Mom” It doesn’t matter how bad you are; Mom will always love you! This is the picture Isaiah is painting as he talks about how God feels about His people. For, Israel has been bad! She has forgotten God. Israel has forsaken God. Their sins have piled up against them. But God cannot forget His children, and He wants them to come home. And God goes to great lengths to bring them back. What have you done to strain your relationship with God? Where have you blown it? Are your sins piling up against you? If so, you have a God who refuses to forget you. You have a God who refuses to write you off. Like a loving mother, God isn’t content with you simply being safe… He wants you home! He wants you home NOW!! You may not think of God all day today, but you will be on His mind ALL DAY! That’s how much He loves you. So appreciate His love and kindness. And while you’re at it, extend some of His love to others.
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17. (Isaiah 53) “Scum” He wasn’t much to look at. Growing up in a small town, most folks considered him to be from the wrong side of the tracks. 
If people caught a glimpse of him, their eyes usually darted away. He was used to rejection, and knew the pain of ridicule first hand. Who is this servant of God Isaiah is talking about? It’s Jesus. And when Jesus was crucified, most people thought He deserved it; but, of course, He didn’t. Jesus was innocent and guilty at the same time! Innocent of any personal wrongdoing, yet guilty of our sins! That’s why He died. And praise God He died! For, by His wounds, your relationship with God is healed. Today, praise God for His son who would embrace death to bring you eternal life.(Click To Share Your Thoughts With Me!)
18. (Isaiah 56) “The Eunuch” 750 years after Isaiah’s words, a Eunuch is reading Isaiah 53 when he meets Philip on a desert road (Acts 8). So, imagine how the Eunuch felt as he read the passage you read today, shortly after his baptism. This had to put a smile on his face! For he would realize that his ‘scars’ didn’t keep him from being in the presence of God. His experience with Philip was what God deeply desired. The scars of your past do not prevent you from knowing God either. God deeply wants to be close to you. The scars on Jesus make your scars powerless to ruin you. Today, praise your God for His great love. Thank Him for making it possible for you to be saved.
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19. (Isaiah 57:1-2) “The Righteous Dead” Why do good people die too soon? Why do the righteous die like anyone else? Well, first of all, the righteous are not like everyone else; so, their death has with it a bigger purpose in mind. Isaiah makes an interesting observation about the death of the righteous. Though it may be very difficult to fully understand why, sometimes the righteous die to be spared of something worse. Another difference from everyone else is that the righteous experience great peace when they die! Because they are right with God, death is only a doorway to eternity for the righteous. As a believer, you can be confident that, when you face your own death, you will be in God’s loving hands. So don’t fret over your death. Instead, keep trusting God who promises great peace when you pass on.
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20. (Isaiah 61) “Oaks of Righteousness” God is so good! He is the ultimate source of the blessings of life. Here in Isaiah 61, He refers to those who He blesses as Oaks of Righteousness. Have you ever taken the time to look at an oak tree? The mighty oak stands tall and secure among all the other trees of the forest. Its leaves are broad and green. After a violent storm, the mighty oak still stands! You get the idea that, when you trust the Lord, He makes your life secure. You flourish… You last… You are sustained in times of peril. While everyone else can be uprooted with the slightest bit of trouble, the righteous are sustained by the power of God. Today, sink your roots deep into the Lord. When the storm clouds of despair appear on the horizon, keep trusting in God. For, He blesses His oaks with righteousness and peace.
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21. (2 Chronicles 33:10-17) “Manasseh of Judah” Sometimes God has to get your attention the hard way; and there’s nothing that gets your attention more than pain! Do you agree? That’s how God gets Manasseh’s attention. King Manasseh is captured, and, with a hook in his nose, he is led to Babylon! Manasseh’s spirit is broken, and he cries out to God. The Lord sees his penitent heart and delivers him back to Judah. Out of gratitude, Manasseh rebuilds the walls of the city and restores the altar of God. What painful experience did god use to get your attention? What will your gratitude motivate you to do for the Lord today? Be thankful that God gets your attention! This means He loves you and wants to work in your life. That’s a good thing!! So use your painful moments to your advantage. Let your trials develop a greater commitment to God.
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22. (Nahum) “The Wicked” You don’t hear much preaching on the wrath of God these days. A Google search on the topic will leave you wanting. Most would say it’s not politically correct to mention God’s wrath; it’s too negative. Others would point out that a focus on God’s wrath doesn’t jive with God’s love. But the truth is, many of the prophets who spoke of God’s love also spoke of God’s wrath. Isaiah, the Minor Prophets, the apostle Paul, John (The apostle of love), and the Lord himself, all spoke of God’s love and wrath with deep conviction. Why? God will hold mankind accountable for their sin. Whether it’s Assyria or the neighbor next door, God’s wrath is coming to those who reject Him. The question is: Is God’s wrath coming for you? The wrath of God reminds us that you, (as well as everyone else), fall short of God’s glory, and need a savior. Praise God you have one, huh? Today, let the love of God pull you toward heaven, while the wrath of God pushes you away from hell. Let the wrath of God motivate you to turn to the Lord.
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23. (2 Kings 21:17-26; 2 Chronicles 33:18-23; 2 Kings 22:1, 23:26-27) “Amon” What will you pass on to your children? What will you pass on to the next generation? Amon is a chip off the old block. He has many of the values and mannerisms of his father, Manasseh. He rejects God and worships idols. After all, he learned by example; it’s all he knows. He is only imitating his dear ole dad. This leads to Judah’s destruction. It’s important that the next generation sees spiritual values from you. You may think it’s important for you to model, for the younger generation, things like responsibility and working hard, but they need to see much more! They must have examples of how a true disciple lives in a wicked world. They need to see the reality and tension that is involved in being a real Christian. They must see what to do when they fail. They need to see and hear what it is like to follow Jesus Christ. So, how about it? What will you display today? What will the young see from your life? This is SO important, because they are bound to repeat what they have learned from YOU. So let them learn something awesome!! Today, set a good example. Show the younger generation what being a Christian is all about.
24. (Zephaniah 1:1-3:20; 2 Chronicles 33:24-34:7) “Mighty Warrior
He stands strong with sword in hand. He’s intimidating to his foes. He swiftly rips through the opposition with skill. When the battle is over, He is still standing. His sword is raised in victory. There are no survivors! Why does He fight? He fights for justice. But most of all, He fights for you! For this mighty warrior is on your side. Whew!! Thank God!! Who is this mighty warrior? This is Jesus (Isa. 9:6). Jesus came to a hostile world and battled against evil! He was wounded and killed to give you freedom. He laid down His life to save yours. You stand in victory today because of this brave soldier. Today, think about the freedom you experience because of Jesus. Appreciate His courage by living your life to please Him.
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25. (Jeremiah 1:9-10) “Jeremiah” Considered to be the son of a high priest, God chose him before he was born for a special mission. Though he lacked confidence in his own abilities, God knew what he could do, and would help Jeremiah influence Israel for over 50 years! His job involved uprooting, tearing down, and destroying the ungodly values and ideals around him in order to build and plant righteousness. That’s what it takes to turn things toward God. There must be uprooting before planting, and tearing down before there can be any serious building. Jeremiah would practice this concept in his own life as he challenged others to turn to God. What sinful attitude do you need to uproot so God’s word can grow in your heart? What needs to be torn down in order to make room for God to build godly character in your life? Like Jeremiah, God gives you a mission. Today, consider what you need to change, and how you can help others turn to God.
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26. (Jeremiah 3:6-5:13) “Two-Timer” God paints a graphic picture, through the prophet Jeremiah, of the unfaithfulness of His People. He compares them to whores and prostitutes! Why? They have been unfaithful to their ‘husband’. Now you may think this is a little harsh, but Israel and Judah had slowly departed from their strong commitment to God. They may talk like they were dedicated to God, but that’s all it is… talk! Their worship and praise is just a lot of hot air! Many claim today to believe in God. They see themselves as faithful too. They come to church on Sundays and appear so serious about God; but it’s only a show. They sing… they pray… they smile as they greet others; but no sooner are they out the door, they change—the songs they have sung fade away, and the sermon is quickly forgotten as they pursue what they are really excited about. They may fool other people, but God sees through this. Like a husband full of rage, He is upset by their unfaithfulness—their hypocrisy. He wants a divorce! Wow!! Are you being faithful to God? Are you in love with the Lord? Are other things taking you away from God? Today, renew your vows to God. Let Him know how much you love Him. Don’t let anything come between the two of you. Give your heart to God!
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27. (Jeremiah 6) “Rejected Silver” God calls His people rejected silver. Hmmm… Why call them that? What is He meaning? Well, heat has a refining effect on metal. With heat, you can bend and shape metal to a required shape. Heat brings out the impurities. Heat makes metal purer and stronger. Without heat, precious metals like gold and silver are nearly worthless. God has turned up the heat on Judah. Though God has turned up the heat, Judah is no longer responding… They ignore God’s discipline. So, Judah is no longer changing. The impurities of sin still remain in her. Since she refuses to be refined, Judah is rejected and tossed aside. Occasionally God will turn up the heat in your life. God will use problems and pain to humble you and purify your faith. When He does, get excited; because your painful moments can bring out your best! God is working on you to remove the worst, and bring out your best. Is God turning up the heat in your life? What impurities is He trying to remove in you? Is it working? If God is turning up the heat in your life, praise Him! Don’t reject His discipline. For this is evidence of His love for you and His intense desire to refine your faith.
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28. (Jeremiah 7:1-9:26) “Ancestors” Everyone has them. Ancestors… These are the family members who lived long before you. There is nothing like a story about an ancestor. But the most valuable thing about having ancestors is how much you can learn from them. It’s their experiences that help you ‘experience’ the best of life. That’s why God brings up Judah’s ancestry. He’s hoping Judah will learn from the mistakes of their ancestors. Yet, they don’t learn a thing! Are you learning anything significant from your ancestors? What lessons do you think God wants you to get from your ancestors? Today, think about what your ancestors did with the Lord. Allow their spirituality to touch your heart. Learn from their mistakes, and develop a healthy and humble attitude.
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29. (Jeremiah 10:1-12:17) “The Goldsmith” With great skill, a goldsmith fashions something unique… something special. Though it dazzles people with its beauty, it is worthless. Man has made his idols for generations. He pours his life into each of them, hoping to find fulfillment and satisfaction. For a few moments, his idols give him some sense of pleasure; but in the end they come up short. Today, man continues to make his idols. An idol can be a career, a car, a house, a person, or a guilty pleasure. But like all idols, when tested, they sit there in silence. Why? They are man-made, not God-made. Jeremiah reminds you, today, that there is nothing like your God. There is nothing on earth that can be made that loves you like the one who made YOU! God deeply cares about you. He understands you better than anyone or anything. Today, worship your God, and look to Him to satisfy the hunger of your soul.
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30. (Jeremiah 13:1-15:9) “The Wanderer” What can anyone say? Jeremiah doesn’t mean to be negative. He has to tell the truth. God’s people are about to go through the ringer!! They walk aimlessly because they are full of pride! What has happened to these people? They have lost their way. They wander and don’t seem to care. The God who brought them out of bondage has no choice but to let their rebellion lead them back into slavery. Some will perish by the sword. Like Moses, Jeremiah will see the survivors go into captivity. What can you learn from all this? The biggest mistake you can make as a believer is to become complacent with your God; because there is nothing good for those who ignore the Lord. When you walk away from God, you end up back where you were—captive to sin. You can’t let this happen to you!! Today, do a spiritual inventory of your life. Are you walking with the Lord? Is your faith growing? Is your journey leading to Heaven? Today, keep your eyes on the Lord. Give God your heart!
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31. (Jeremiah 15:10-17:18) “Jeremiah” Jeremiah is disturbed! He feels like he’s been sold a bill of goods. He is beginning to realize that he will be persecuted for doing the right thing. Jeremiah realizes that though he has been extremely faithful, he will go through God’s punishment on Judah too. This seems totally unfair to Jeremiah. Why should he have to suffer the same punishment as everyone else? Why, when he’s been so good? But God reassures Jeremiah that he will prevail. God won’t let Jeremiah down. Funny thing… Jeremiah suffers through rejection from his home town, death threats, imprisonment, and Nebuchadnezzar’s heartless siege on Jerusalem. He wasn’t insulated from any of these hardships; and neither will you! Look… God doesn’t promise you that everything is going to be ‘hunky-dory’ if you trust Him. In fact, life can get more difficult when you seriously follow the Lord. And when things like difficulties, rejection, persecution, and suffering come along, you can become sore about it and feel like God is not taking care of you like He promised. But the truth is, God IS taking care of you. Better yet, God is using you! You see, He needs faithful people available when hardships come to your family, workplace, and city. He needs you to be right alongside of those in a crisis so they can see how trusting God works. God was good to Jeremiah. How can you know this? Everyone else crashed and burned, but not Jeremiah. He may have been banged up a bit, but in the end, God’s faithful servant was still standing. Today, if you are feeling like you got the dirty end of the stick, don’t be discouraged! God loves you and is protecting you right now. He has you strategically in the right place to use you. Hey!! YOU WILL PREVAIL! After the dust has settled, you will still be standing!!
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DailyPeople – August   |   Tim Gill

1. (Jeremiah 17:19-20:13) “Jeremiah” Here we go again. Jeremiah turns up the heat. He strongly warns and urges the people of Judah to change. This causes more tension and trouble in Jeremiah’s life. People begin to turn on him. You’d think they would be grateful, but they start to resist and ridicule him. They want him to shut up!! They spread vicious rumors about him. They plot to kill him! Jeremiah hears of their plans. Like anyone else, this frightens and discourages him. But as he goes to God in prayer, Jeremiah’s fears soon subside. The Lord is with him. So, he’s going to be alright. You might as well face it; as you try to please God, you’re not going to please everyone else. Sometimes, your commitment to God will bring ridicule and rejection from your family and friends. You are going to get hurt! But don’t let this defeat you. Don’t quit!! Don’t let your critics win! Today, keep doing the right thing. Keep trusting the Lord. He is with you and will help you endure.
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2. (2 Kings 22:3-20; 2 Chronicles 34:8-35:19, 26-27) “Hilkiah
Years of neglect have not been kind to God’s house. It’s been a long time since the Temple has been used properly. Imagine a thick cloud of dust tumbling out of the doors and windows of the Temple as men carry out trash and debris. The noise of hammers and saws echo through the halls as restoration work is in full progress. All of a sudden, something catches a priest’s eye. It’s an old scroll. With great curiosity, he starts reading the ancient words… He is frightened. No… He is terrified!! It’s the Word Of God! He calls for his assistant. “You must take this to the King”, he urges. King Josiah (He’s only 18 yrs. old) starts reading the scroll, and his face turns white!! In his anguish, he rips his clothing and begins to call out to God. He confesses his negligence. He pleads with God to forgive His people for their sin. Josiah then orders the largest sacrifice since Samuel was alive. God hears his prayer and postpones His punishment until Josiah dies. Hmmm… What is your typical response when you read something convicting in God’s word? Does it move you? Does it crush you? Does God’s word convict you anymore? Does it cause you to cry out to God? Today, pray that you will respond to God’s word seriously and with deeper conviction.
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3. (2 Chronicles 35:20-25; 2 Kings 23:30-37; Jeremiah 22:10-17, 26:1-24) “Uriah” He preached the same message to the same people as Jeremiah, but with different results. Jeremiah is spared while Uriah is killed! Why? The only difference between Jeremiah and Uriah was courage. One stood with conviction, while the other fled in fear. Jeremiah trusted the Lord, while Uriah turned tail and ran for it. People can tell whether you are full of God or full of … it. They know the difference between deep conviction and fair weather faith. What do you have? What will you do when your faith brings you persecution? What will you do when you have to choose between pleasing God, or pleasing people? Will you stand your ground… or run? Today, don’t wimp-out! Be courageous! Like Jeremiah, place your future in God’s hands. Set your jaw, and stand on your faith.
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4. (Jeremiah 46:1-47:7) “Nebuchadnezzar” He’s the son of King Nabopolassar, and he is coming for Egypt! God would use Nebuchadnezzar to ‘clean house’ in Egypt and eventually Judah. Today, God sends various forms of ‘Nebuchadnezzar’ to His people. It can be sickness, a termination, or anything designed to wake you up. Is there something like this going on in your life? Is God trying to get your attention? If so, what about? Will your ‘Nebuchadnezzar’ be successful in getting your attention? Today, listen for God’s voice. Turn closer to God… before He sends you another Nebuchadnezzar!
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5. (Habakkuk 3) “Habakkuk” It’s easy to trust God when everything is going great. But what will you do when life takes a nose dive? What will you do when things don’t work out like you want them too? Will you only obey the Lord as long as He gives you what you want? Habakkuk is at a crossroads. He is watching his nation crumble before his eyes. Habakkuk is realizing that he is going into captivity with the rest of God’s rebellious people; it doesn’t seem fair! But Habakkuk makes a promise to God. He promises, whether good or bad, he will be joyful in his God. For, it’s not all about the ‘perks’ of discipleship that Habakkuk keeps following God; it’s about something more. It’s about knowing the Lord personally. It’s about experiencing God’s love. So Habakkuk trusts God’s wisdom and way. He believes, in the end, he is better off. How about you? Will you trust the Lord, regardless of what comes your way? Today, look past the gloom and doom around you, and see your Lord. Allow Him to help you navigate through the things that worry you, and experience security and peace of mind.
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6. (Jeremiah 35:1-19) “The Rekabites” Do you listen to the Lord? How are you doing with obeying your God? Jeremiah holds up the Rekabites as an example of how obedient they need to be with God. These people listened to their father, and obeyed his wishes. But Judah refuses to listen to and obey THEIR FATHER. Their chronic rebellion would bring an end to Israel, and usher in 70 years of Babylonian captivity. Everything that happens to you comes down to what you do with the Lord. Your choices matter!! The most powerful possession you have is your approach to God and His word. Today, make sure you are paying attention to God! Listen to His voice. Obey His word… and experience His blessings.
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7. (Jeremiah 36:1-32; 45:1-5) “Jehoiakim” How deeply does God’s word cut you? Jeremiah sends God’s message on a scroll to King Jehoiakim. But as he hears the Word of God, Jehoiakim cuts the scroll into pieces and burns them; he is not intimidated by God’s warning. But Jeremiah sends another scroll. Look… you can ignore it, mock it, deny it, or fight it. But you cannot destroy God’s word. God’s message still stands strong. His promise will not be denied. How are you responding to God’s word? Are you downplaying something He is saying to you? Today, pay closer attention to God’s word… and be blessed.
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8. (Daniel 1-2) “Daniel” The king of Babylon has had a terrible nightmare. He wants to know the meaning of his dream. If his court gets it wrong, everyone is going to die! But Daniel knows Nebuchadnezzar’s dream and its meaning. How is this possible? Daniel calls out to the Lord, and his prayer is answered. You see, God is the true source of wisdom. God gives wisdom to those who ask. It’s God who has the answers!! This is what Daniel makes clear to Nebuchadnezzar. When you seek the counsel of God, He will give you the insight and wisdom you need. What are you needing to know this morning? What mystery do you need help solving? Have you been asking for God’s direction? Like Daniel, go to God and ask for His wisdom. Wait for His answer. He will tell you what to do.
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9. (Jeremiah 48) “The Moabites” This is not the first prophecy against Moab. Prophets like Isaiah, Ezekiel, Amos, and Zephaniah condemned Moab and predicted their fall. Why? Moab was a terrible influence on Israel (Numbers 25). Their deception was a key moment that led to Israel watering down their commitment to God, and idol worship. They were a big part of Israel’s fall. But you do find redemption in Moab’s future (v. 45-47). Jeremiah would speak of a time in the distant future that God would bring the Moabites back to Him. This is an excellent example of the goodness and grace of God. Isn’t it awesome that God extends the same goodness and grace to you? What is impossible for you to accomplish alone, is possible in Jesus Christ. Because of The cross, anyone can come back to God. Sin no longer has to be a barrier. Today, praise God for His goodness to you. Thank Him for giving you redemption in Christ.
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10. (2 Kings 24:7-20; 2 Chronicles 36:9-16; Jeremiah 22:24-30, 37:1-2) “Jehoiachin” Well, it looks like the wheels are coming off for Judah. Once an invincible nation, God’s people have slowly dwindled into a weak and faithless few. The last of God’s people are about to fall to the nation of Babylon. Within a few short months Nebuchadnezzar will confiscate all the Temple furnishings, an army of 7000, all the skilled workers in Judah, and anyone else of social stature; leaving only the weak and the poor behind to be led by an imbecile by the name of Zedekiah. Why? Poor leadership!! All King Jehoiachin had to do was humble himself before God, and obey. But, in pride, God’s warnings go unheeded by this puppet king. In fact, God’s message, as well as the messengers, is despised! This dangerous attitude spreads throughout the palace and into the streets. Whether it’s your family or your church, you stand to lose everything when leaders refuse to humble themselves in the sight of God, and obey. How about you? Are you walking in humility with God, or do others have to remind you that you are full of pride? What will people see in you today? Will your influence, today, prevent others from disaster? Will your example nudge others to seek to please the Lord? Today, let humility begin in your heart. Spread an obedient spirit into your workplace, home, and church. Be a catalyst for change!
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11. (Jeremiah 29) “Elasah” He carries good news to the exiles in Babylon. Elasah brings news of redemption and news of restoration. It’s a message of hope… It’s a message of promise! For, God is going to bring back those who seek Him with all their heart and listen to Him. Like Elasah, you carry a precious message to a people broken and in bondage. This message you carry can redeem and restore the worst of men. Today, let your faith muster the boldness to share this message with another. Someone needs to know that God loves them and has a plan for them. Who needs to know that today? So speak up! Give the hope of God to others.
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12. (Jeremiah 23:9-40) “False Prophets” Jeremiah’s heart is broken! Why? Things are morally falling apart around him. False prophets are fighting his message too. They are telling the people what they want to hear. They promote peace and safety while utter destruction is at the door. So the people are not convicted; they are not preparing. Instead, they are living it up! They are going on with their lives as if nothing is going to happen. Boy are they in for a surprise!!! Are there false prophets on earth today? You bet. There are many ‘prophets’ who will tell you whatever you want to hear, instead of what you need to hear. They will stroke your soul with cleaver statements and smooth talk. But you have to ask yourself if their message is rooted in the will of God! Is their message really from God? An effective way to know is to check their message against the Bible. Today, listen carefully to what you are hearing from your radio, your smartphone, or the pulpit. Do some personal study. Ask God for wisdom. Make sure the message is from God.
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13. (Jeremiah 50) “The Hammer” Babylon was known as The Hammer of the ancient world. Yet, Jeremiah would predict that The Hammer would fall to another powerful Kingdom. The Medes were slowly growing more powerful. It wouldn’t be long before God would use the Medes to invade and crush Babylon. It goes to show you that nothing is invincible. Nothing can stand against God. This means no one or no thing you are facing can stand against The Lord. Nothing!!! Any problem you are facing today is powerless against God. Do you feel like something is beating you down? If so, realize that God has more than enough power to help you in your time of need. So don’t be afraid of God. Go ahead… ask God to help you. He will! Call on God right now. He will give you the power to face anything. He will give you the power to overcome.
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14. (Jeremiah 51) “The Portion Of Jacob” Out of all the graphic details of Babylon’s fall, Jeremiah offers some hope to God’s people. He speaks of how the Portion of Jacob will come to their aid. He wants the exiles to know that the Portion of Jacob is enough to give them what they need to eventually come back from captivity. Who is the Portion of Jacob? It’s God. The same Hebrew word for portion is the one used for manna. Hmmm… Remember manna? You know, the bread from heaven that was given to Israel when they left Egypt? Regardless of how much they gathered, God supplied each of them with a generous portion; He supplied the Israelites with enough manna to live on. This is what Jeremiah means when he calls God the Portion of Jacob. He is saying to the exiles that God supplies… He gives you a portion… all that you need. God is enough to satisfy your greatest needs. Does the Portion of Jacob satisfy you? He can, and will, when you truly depend on Him. Today, look to the Portion of Jacob to supply you with all you need. Trust His love to supply you with all you’ll need today.
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15. (Ezekiel 1:1-7:27) “Ezekiel” It’s been 5 years… A 30-year-old man sits beside a river in a strange place against his will. Ezekiel is sad… Why? He’s not home. He’s in the foreign country of his captors. As one of the first to be taken into Babylonian captivity, Ezekiel sits and contemplates his discouraging situation. Will he ever see home again? What’s going to happen to his nation? All of a sudden, dark clouds start to form. Lightning flashes across the sky. A storm seems to be brewing on the horizon; but it’s no storm. It’s God, and He has a message for Ezekiel. It doesn’t matter where you are. It doesn’t matter how bad it gets. When discouraged, God will bring to you a message of hope. God tells Ezekiel to not be discouraged. He is to set his jaw and do the work. Today, if you’re discouraged, if you’re overwhelmed, look to the heavens. The Lord
is coming to help you. Today, listen carefully for His voice, and be encouraged by His spirit to remain faithful.
16. (Ezekiel 11) “Pelatiah” In spite of the captivity, many of the exiles’ lives go unchanged. In fact, many would add to their list of sin. God comes to Ezekiel once again. This time, God points out to this prophet the judgement that is coming to the remnant in captivity. As God reveals His judgment, a leader by the name of Pelatiah drops dead!! What’s going on here? Sometimes, it takes a graphic object lesson for people to take God’s warnings seriously. Think about it… Can you think of a person or an event that God has used to get your attention? God will use sickness, hardship, and even the death of a loved one to get your attention. What has God used recently to ‘wake you up’? Today, take God’s warnings seriously. Pay attention to what He is trying to do in your life, and let it change you for the better.
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17. (Ezekiel 12:1-14:23) “Noah, Daniel, and Job” With Ezekiel already in Babylon, God now turns His attention to the fate of His rebellious people left in Jerusalem. As God describes what will happen, He mentions three iconic figures every Jew is familiar with—Noah, Daniel, and Job. Why? These three faithful guys point to God’s mercy and His justice. You see, Noah fully obeyed God. He warned the world of the flood, and manages to save his family in the process. Daniel was faithful to God under extreme pressure. He manages to save a few of his friends. Job persevered through unbearable suffering, but wasn’t able to save his family or friends. These examples of faith provide a stern and sober warning that God holds accountable all people. Whether one accepts or rejects Him, everyone is responsible and held accountable for their response. But it’s important to remember that God also will be merciful, and save the few who will seek Him. Today, think about your family and friends who need you to be a Noah… a Daniel… a Job in their life. They need you to be a faithful example in the face of opposition and hardships. You may be their only hope. You could be the catalyst that leads them to change. Today, display a faith in God that encourages others to seek Him.
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18. (Ezekiel 16) “The Harlot” This chapter metaphorically describes the history of the relationship between God and His people. When God first met Israel, He compares the moment to finding a helpless, orphaned newborn. God gathers the child up and takes care of her. And when she is old enough, He spreads the edge of His cloak over her (This is a gesture of marriage). He treats her like a queen! But she doesn’t appreciate her husband. She packs up and leaves God. Breaking her vows, she lives like a skanky whore, giving herself to other nations. She doesn’t want anything to do with her man. So she makes her own gods from her jewelry (God’s blessings). Eventually her orgy comes to an end. No one wants anything to do with her. So she starts offering money to anyone (any nation) who will sleep with her (have an alliance with Israel). God is jealous! In His anger, He separates from His first love. But the separation doesn’t last very long. God would make a new covenant. He makes atonement for her sin (a new beginning) and takes Israel back. This would happen when Jesus came to earth. It doesn’t take a brain surgeon to identify with this. For when God found you, you were in a helpless mess. Right? God sees you. He notices you and takes you in. He cares for you. He marries you and treats you like a queen. And when you are ungrateful and blow it – or your love for God grows cold; or you get yourself into another big mess – what does God do with you? He disciplines! But He also makes atonement (forgives) for you and takes you back. Wow… He’s such a good God, isn’t He? Today, look at how He loves you, and take a close look at how you are loving Him. Today, appreciate God’s atonement he made for you on a cross. Let His grace humble you with thankfulness.
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19. (Ezekiel 19:1-22:31) “Son Of Man” Passages like these in Ezekiel are hard to read. Most folks skim through chapters like these. It looks like Israel will never change. So prophecy after prophecy comes out of Ezekiel’s mouth, describing the coming doom of God’s people. You can imagine how Ezekiel must have felt as he brought this message of gloom and doom every day. The people didn’t like his sermons! Who wants to hear this kind of stuff over and over? Today, it’s no different. People want to hear more positive things. They want to be entertained with interesting stories, film clips, and clever clichés. But sometimes people need brutal honesty! They need a kick in the pants!! Otherwise, they never see their sin, or have any urgency to change their ways. Look… truth is good for you. In fact, it’s great for you. You need it. Truth will save you a lot of grief in the long run. The question is: Do you want it? Are you sure you are ready to hear it? For, when you hear something truthful, your response will determine if it will be good or bad for you. Today, crave what God says. Be open to the truth He speaks into your life. Be thankful that God would love you enough to level with you. Today, let the truth turn you… and set you free!
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20. (Ezekiel 23:1-49; 2 Chronicles 36:13a; 2 Kings 25:1) “Oholibah
She is a prostitute, and she will sleep with anyone who will have her. This is the image God has of His beloved, Judah. Like her northern counterpart, (Israel), Judah has been reduced to nothing more than a people who are crawling after alliances with any nation that will have her. This is disastrous for Judah. For, God could have been all the ‘superpower’ they needed to make it, but Judah would not have anything to do with God. The lesson here is plain: There is no one or no thing that can compare to Almighty God. There is no one or no thing on this earth that can satisfy the soul as much as the one who made you. So, are you finding yourself searching for significance in ‘things’? Be prepared to be disappointed. Today, find meaning in your relationship with Christ. Look to God to satisfy your deep desires. For, God knows you best, and knows what you really need.
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21. (Ezekiel 24) “The Son Of Man” God is about to speak through Ezekiel once again. The message is heartbreaking. At that very moment, The Son Of Man says that Jerusalem, along with the treasured Temple, is being attacked and will be destroyed. The people don’t believe it. How can Ezekiel know this? He lives hundreds of miles away. But this is exactly what is happening. To the very day, Ezekiel tells the people in captivity that Nebuchadnezzar has started attacking Jerusalem. Ezekiel would suspend all prophecy from his lips until word came from Jerusalem that the city and the temple had been leveled. This gave Ezekiel instant credibility! Generations later, The Son Of Man would speak of the future—Jesus would tell people that He would be put to death, but would rise from the grave in 3 days. The people thought He was nuts too; but it happened just as He predicted… to the day!!! Today, you can be sure that everything Jesus says is true. This includes all His promises to you and what He says about His return. Today, have confidence every time you open and read the Word of God. Be reassured that every word in it is true. Everything has either already happened, or will happen.
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22. (Jeremiah 21:1-22:9, 34:1-7, 32:1-33:9) “The Restored
Things are coming to an end in Judah. Nebuchadnezzar stands at the door and is about to break through the walls of Jerusalem. He will burn the city to the ground. The Temple will be a pile of rubble. Everyone will be taken far away. Only a handful of weak and helpless people will be left behind to scrounge around to survive. But in the middle of all the mayhem, God makes a promise to His people. One day He will bring the people back to the Promised Land. One day, God will restore Israel, and the world will know that the Lord is God. The same is true for you. God’s promise of restoration is for you too. God is still bringing people out of captivity. He is interested in restoring your life too. He wants things to be good again. He wants to restore what sin has destroyed. He wants to walk close to you once again. This is what the cross accomplished. Jesus makes it possible for your relationship with God to be restored. Praise God for His amazing grace! He cannot stay angry with you. He loves you enough to provide a way to restore what you lost. He is able to start restoring when you start to surrender. Today, surrender to your God… and watch with great anticipation how God restores the things you’ve lost!
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23. (Jeremiah 33:10-13, 30:1-31:26) “The Weary and The Faint
Jeremiah is falling into a deep sleep. The Lord speaks to him in a dream. Jeremiah sees a ghost town; a subtle wind blows trash and debris along its sidewalks. There is no music… no buzz in the air from traffic and crowds. It’s silent… It’s very quiet… His home town is so desolate that there are no animals wandering the streets. But God says to Jeremiah that, one day, the people will return. The sights and sounds of a bustling city will once again return to Jerusalem; for, God has brought home His people. God’s Kingdom will flourish again!! Jeremiah suddenly awakens breathless! He smiles… It’s been a good sleep! If you are feeling like you have lost a lot lately, take heart! Don’t be discouraged! It’s only a season. This, too, will pass. All sunshine will make a desert. Sometimes you need a storm to bring the rain you need to grow. You just focus on pleasing God, and He will take care of the rest. Keep trusting God, and He will restore your life! Keep walking with the Lord, and eventually you will receive a special blessing. Then you, too, can wake up and say, “It was a good sleep.”
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24. (Jeremiah 23:1-8, 33:14-26, 31:27-40)
The Lord Our Righteous Savior
Jeremiah speaks of a day that is coming… A day when God will raise up a King to deliver His people. This King will bring something exciting. He will bring a new covenant. Of course he’s talking about Jesus. For, the King of Kings would draw all kinds of people from all kinds of places. He also would set free those held captive by their sin. And when The Lord Your Savior was lifted up, He brought everyone something no one could offer—redemption! Now, anyone can come to God. Anyone can be saved!! Like the laws of nature, what God has done will never change. His love for you never changes. His promises are as sure as the sunrise. Today, you experience this new covenant. Today, The Lord, YOUR Righteous Savior gives you a new life… a fresh start… a second chance. Today, respond to your Savior with gratitude and a deep commitment to make sure His sacrifice on the cross is not in vain.
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25. (Ezekiel 25:1-17, 29:1-31:18) “Stick People
After a series of condemnations against Ammon, Moab, Edom, and Philistia, God sets His sights on Egypt. Why? Egypt had come to Judah’s aid. As Nebuchadnezzar laid siege on Jerusalem, Pharaoh Hophra would try to blindside Nebuchadnezzar. This attempt turned out to be a dismal failure. Think about it… The nation that held God’s people hostage in slavery, is now summoned for help. As Judah leaned on their ally, mighty Egypt would be as helpful as a broken stick! There are a couple of lessons here: #1- When you feel God is coming down on you, surrender… That’s all Judah should have done to avoid God’s discipline. This is all you need to do to regain God’s favor. #2- Rely on God instead of ungodly people. Israel made a huge mistake asking Egypt for help. All they had to do was call out to God, and they would have had all they help they needed. When you are in trouble, call out to God!
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26. (Ezekiel 26:1-28:26) “Tyre” Like Alcatraz, (i.e., The Rock), the city of Tyre sat securely on a rock island less than a half mile off the main coast in the Mediterranean. Tyre was a major commercial player in the ancient world. Tyre also influenced Israel with foreign gods. In fact, the king of Tyre thought he was as powerful as a god; he was sadly mistaken. Many people of ancient history considered Tyre to be impossible to defeat. This gave those in Tyre an arrogant sense of security. After all, being built on an island made the city of Tyre nearly impossible to conquer. Many people tried to take the city. Nebuchadnezzar did have some ‘influence’ over her for a short time; but it wasn’t until 332 BC, when ‘Alexander The Great’ built an earthen bridge to reach her shore, that the city of Tyre would officially be taken. He would push the town into the sea! Tyre reminds the prideful that no one is impossible to conquer. No one is a god! Everyone is vulnerable. Today, consider the plight of Tyre. Let the doom of this city humble you to realize how much you need God. Let this city cause you to pause; and ponder where pride lurks in your life. By the way… It is believed this city repented and continued to stand secure for generations. Let this redeeming moment in Tyre’s history encourage you to do the same.
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27. (Jeremiah 38) “Ebed-Melek” He is only mentioned here, but God uses Ebed-Melek to save a famous man. Jeremiah has been lowered into a damp and muddy cistern to die! But Ebed-Melek decides to lift his leader out of the mud. Hmmm… Do you know a leader who could use a little lift? Do you know someone who could use some encouragement and reassurance? Today, while offering a prayer on their behalf, give a leader a word of encouragement. Take steps to protect their back. Lift them up with your words and works of faith. Let them know you stand with them. This will give them a second wind as they serve God and lead you.
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28. (2 Kings 25:2-6; Jeremiah 39:2-5, 52:9-30; 2 Chronicles 36:17-21; Jeremiah 39:9-18, 40:1-6) “Zedekiah” He’s afraid… He’s stubborn too. The last king of Judah refuses to listen to Jeremiah. King Zedekiah could have simply surrendered to Nebuchadnezzar, but he refused. As a result, he would be hunted down, captured, witness the death of his family, and then have his eyes gouged out. Imagine, the last thing he saw was his family dying!! This is the sad truth about pride. Stubbornness only makes things worse. Are you experiencing some pride? Are you refusing to listen to godly counsel? Your pride will only make matters worse! Today, forsake your pride, and humble out. Start listening to the godly counsel you are getting. Let humility help you make wiser choices.
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29. (Lam 1-2) “Daughter Judah” It’s not pretty… No one responds to the trumpet call of worship anymore. The temple is abandoned. There are no longer any sacrifices being offered. People are starving. Prophets are silent. Bodies of the young and the old lie on the city streets. People are eating their children! It’s 9/11 in Judah!! The thick walls of Jerusalem are now in rubble scattered all over the place. Trash is everywhere. It smells awful. The city gates have been ripped off their hinges and are starting to sink into the ground. There is no one who can help. It’s humiliating to watch Jerusalem fall apart. Listen… Can you hear the Daughter of Zion? She weeps in shame as she remembers how it used to be! This is the worst thing about it all. The humiliation is too much to bear. All Jeremiah and those left behind can do is cry. Have you ever felt like this? Do you ever shed tears when people fall away? Does it bother you when you see God’s Kingdom experience a set back because of sin? How do you feel when the church struggles? Jeremiah lifts his hands to God. He cries out to the Lord in tears asking for help. Today, allow God to break your heart over the condition of the world and the lost. Ask God to make your heart soft and sensitive to the condition of your church. Cry out to God for forgiveness, comfort, and hope.
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30. (Lam 3:1-25) “Jeremiah” It’s hard to keep in mind that Jeremiah is going through the ringer with everyone else. Being a faithful prophet does not insulate him from God’s wrath on the rest of His people. Though Jeremiah suffers alongside his fellow Israelites, he refuses to be bitter about it. Instead, he praises God for his grace and faithfulness. He continues to seek God and do what He wants. Why? He believes God will take care of him. By the way, God does! How are things going for you? Are you in the middle of a tough season in your life? Do you feel things like frustration, discouragement, and maybe a little anger? Don’t lose heart. Don’t throw in the towel just yet; for, God still loves you. He knows what’s really going on, and He deeply cares about you. Every day, He is faithful to you too! He is more than enough (Your portion). He will not forget you. He can’t forget you! And He will provide. Keep calling on Him. Be patient… He will come through!
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31. (Jeremiah 44) “The Object Of Reproach” What kind of message are you sending to your friends and family? Things are winding down in Judah. Nebuchadnezzar has taken the city of Jerusalem. The city that once teemed with life is now a ghost town. A ‘skeleton crew’ of people live in the ruins. Yet, Jeremiah keeps preaching! He continues to warn the remnant and urges them to change. You would think the destruction of a city would get the people’s attention enough to lead to some serious change… but it doesn’t. Jeremiah’s warnings fall on deaf ears. Jeremiah warns them that if they continue in their sin, they will be an object of horror and reproach (v12). What in the world does this mean? It means that these people will be a negative reminder of what happens when one rebels against The Lord!! What is your life saying to others about God and Christianity? Does your message encourage, or discourage others to trust the Lord? Hypocrisy mangles and distorts what being a Christian is like. Today, don’t be an object of reproach! Display the kind of heart that brings honor to God. Let others see that a life dedicated to God is good! Show them, through your life, how repentance can bless their life!
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DailyPeople – September   |   Tim Gill

1. (Ezekiel 34) “The Shepherd” He guards over his flock. He knows each of his sheep by name. He leads them to green pastures and clear streams of water. He gently leads those with young. He calls, and his sheep run to him. He sleeps with a club in his hand. If a predator attacks, he is quick to fight to the death. Why does he do this? He loves his flock very much. They are on his mind all the time. This is how God feels about you! The Lord is your shepherd. Though you are one of millions in His great flock, He knows you by name. He thinks about you all the time. He keeps track of you because He cares. He gently leads you. Every once in a while He prods you with His staff to get you moving. If by chance you are missing, He is the first to go and search. He would die for you!! Today, think about the shepherd of your soul. Be grateful for His care. Listen for His voice. Obey His call. Enjoy His love.
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2. (Ezekiel 37) “Mr. Bones” Ezekiel is having a vision from God. He is in a dry valley. Dry bones lie all around him. God asks Ezekiel a question: “Do you think these bones can live again?” Ezekiel says, “That’s up to you, Lord.” Just about then God does something interesting. He commands Ezekiel to speak His Word to the bones. When Ezekiel starts speaking, the bones begin to come together! Soon, they stand before him alive!! Kinda creepy, huh? God explains that the dry bones represent the hopeless state of Israel. They have slowly died as a nation. Yet, God brings them to life when someone is willing to speak God’s Word into them. This is true today! Whenever you bring God’s Word into any situation, you bring new life! Who could use the Word of God from you? Ezekiel spoke up; Will you? Today, try to speak God’s Word into the lives of those you work with or meet. If you do, you will witness God working powerfully… right before your eyes!
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3. (Ezekiel 33:1-20) “The Watchman” What do you do when you see someone heading for trouble? You notice something isn’t quite right. Maybe it’s their attitude… Maybe it’s the absence… You are not quite sure what it is, but you know something’s wrong. Do you speak up? Do you warn them? What if they were to think you’re being foolish? What if they were to become angry with you? Would you still speak up? You should!! God reminds Ezekiel of his responsibility to others. Ezekiel is to be a watchman. This means he has the back of God’s people. God makes it clear that if Ezekiel ignores his mission, the blood of those he should have warned will be on his own head! Are you caring enough about others to speak up when you see them heading for trouble? Who needs you to speak up right now? It doesn’t matter if they will listen or not. What matters is that you speak up and say something before it’s too late. It’s what God would want you to do. Today, don’t be afraid to help others in trouble. Love them by telling them the truth. Be bold! Who knows? You may save someone from the costly effects of sin and a lifetime of heartache.
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4. (Daniel 3) “The Son Of The Gods” Three men take a stand for their God. Three men refuse to bow. Three men trust the Lord. Three men face the consequences! And when Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego fall into the flames, they are delivered by The Lord! By taking such a stand, Nebuchadnezzar starts to believe too! More than ever, Christians around the globe are facing moments where they must take a stand. Christians must start refusing to bow to the peer pressure in the workplace and their community. Maybe you are facing a moment like this. Are you facing pressures to lie, cheat, hate, or fit-in? If so, trust the Lord! Yes, the consequences may be serious; the consequences could be dangerous. But don’t let this discourage you from standing up for the Lord. For, when you take a stand, you encourage others to trust the Lord too. Today, stand up for Christ. Don’t let the consequences keep you from being faithful. Strive to please God! For, you can be sure that THE Son of God will deliver you!
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5. (Ezekiel 40-44) “The Restored” About 15 years have passed since the destruction of Jerusalem. The city is a pile of rubble. It’s been a long time since the people have offered sacrifices at the temple. In another vision, God reveals a future building project to Ezekiel. The prophet sees a newly built temple that is a thousand times larger than the temple Solomon built. To give you some perspective, the new temple covers nearly 4000 square miles! Its rooms are spacious, completely furnished and ready to go. Is God planning to literally build this? No… So what is God revealing to Ezekiel? God is giving Ezekiel an idea of how His kingdom will someday be. Jesus will bring a new ‘temple’ to the earth. It will have room for everyone, and sacrifice will be at its core. The cross will usher in a way of life that is devoted to pleasing God. It will be a temple built with stones of living people (1 Peter 2:5). Today, this temple covers the earth. You are a part of this incredible promise. You now experience a new and living way (Hebrews 10:20). Today, enjoy living in the presence of God. Appreciate how God has restored your life from rubble. Be thankful that Christ made room in His temple for you. The time to worship Him has come! Be a living sacrifice!! Dedicate today to pleasing Him.
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6. (Ezekiel 44:4-48:35) “The Church” Ezekiel’s vision continues to the end of the book. All kinds of instructions and details concerning the use of the new temple are given. For a lot of Christians, these chapters have a reputation of carrying little meaning. But as you look closer into the text, you get a flavor of the Book Of Revelation. As you read today’s chapters, a few ideas pop off the pages. For, Ezekiel is being shown what God’s Kingdom will be like when the Messiah finally comes. God’s Kingdom will be huge! It will cover the entire earth. Service and sacrifice will be the normal way to live in God’s Kingdom (His church) too. Continual sacrifices encourage the idea of constant forgiveness. Isn’t that what Jesus brought from heaven? The church is a place filled with servants (priests) that serve God and each other. God is building His church today to be a place for everyone from anywhere. You are involved in building The Lord’s church too. You are part of this special place. Are you doing all you can to build The Lord’s church? Today, figure out what you can do to make The Church stronger and more effective on this earth.
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7. (Ezekiel 29:17-21; Daniel 4:1-37) “Nebuchadnezzar” He is at the top of his game. He is the king of the hill. But he has forgotten the key to his success. Nebuchadnezzar has forgotten that God has given him his victories. So God humbles the most powerful man on earth. As a result, Nebuchadnezzar is humiliated, driven away from his people, and lives in seclusion like a wild animal. It’s hard to imagine something like this happening to anyone so popular and powerful, but it happens. It’s not until Nebuchadnezzar humbles himself and recognizes that Jehovah is supreme over all, that his life is restored. Pride is the downfall of many a man! God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble. How about you? Is pride and arrogance hardening your heart and head? What are you receiving from the Lord today? Is he having to take you down a couple of notches to remind you that you aren’t as hot as you think? Are you walking humbly before God? Are you listening to godly counsel? Today, acknowledge God’s sovereignty over you! Humble yourself before God… and He will lift you up!
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8. (Job 1:1-3:26) “Job” It’s one of the most perplexing moments in your life. The times when life is out of your control. The moments when life takes a turn for the worse. You brush up against death… a disease… devastation… maybe a divorce. It’s in painful moments you are reminded of how fragile your life can be. It’s in these valleys of despair you tend to ask yourself, “why me?” Job is having a bad day!! He loses his family and fortune. His health rapidly declines. His friends wince at the sight of him. It’s enough to make you wish you’d never been born! But Job doesn’t blame God. Though he is very confused, he accepts the bad with the good. Yes, he will have a lot of questions for his creator. Who wouldn’t? But Job still believes in the goodness of God. He still believes he is in His mighty hands. Maybe that’s what it’s really about—you believing you are still in God’s hands. Whatever you are going through today, trust your God. Go ahead and ask your questions… and expect God to answer.
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9. (Job 4-7) “Eliphaz” Friends gather around Job… For days, they sit with him in silence. Though they don’t say a word, the wheels in their minds are turning. They look at their friend and try to make some sense of it all. Then one of Job’s buddies starts to speak. Eliphaz thinks he knows why this is happening to Job. “It must be your sin!” he observes. Eliphaz concludes, “Job, buddy ole’ pal, things are bad because you are bad.” But this is not the case. Eliphaz doesn’t have all the facts. He is assuming some things… Eliphaz is way off! This discourages Job. When you look at others in their suffering, do you look with a critical eye, or with care? Do you have all the facts? Are you compassionate and understanding? Or down deep inside, do you harbor cold and critical thoughts? Yes, personal sin can cause suffering, and often does! But a broken world can cause it too. Some suffering has nothing to do with personal sin. Sometimes, it’s Satan who is behind it all. So what kind of friend will you be when those you know are going through a season of suffering? Today, don’t jump to conclusions. Don’t be so quick to criticize. Be caring. Have some compassion. Be like Christ and make sure they know you love them.
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10. (Job 8:1-10:22) “Bildad” Another friend of Job breaks his silence and speaks up. Bildad is making a common point in religious circles. Bildad builds a case that Job deserves the hardship he is experiencing. Bildad believes it must be Job’s sin that is at the root of his trouble. He is basically telling Job, “You reap what you sow.” This is a powerful principle of life. It’s found in scripture too. The problem with Bildad’s point is that it’s not true. Though Job and his family have experienced dreadful events, it has nothing to do with their sin. Job, like anyone else, has sin in his life; but it’s Satan who is behind Job’s trouble. This can confuse people from time to time. It takes integrity and wisdom to know the difference. Are you having some trouble? Do you know someone who is going through a season of suffering? What do you think is at the root of your/their suffering? Is the source a personal sin, or could it be a personal attack from hell? Today, think carefully what is behind the seasons of hardship. Make sure your relationship with God is good. If you discover that Satan is attacking you, don’t be so quick throw away your faith and give up. Be patient; persevere and trust the Lord! Like all seasons, it will pass.
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11. (Job 11:1-14:22) “Zophar” Another friend of Job speaks up. This time it’s Zophar. He continues along the same lines as Eliphaz and Bildad. He, too, is convinced that Job’s sin is the real source of his pain and suffering. He chastises Job for being overconfident. Zophar believes Job hasn’t a clue when it comes to God. He urges Job to repent and call on the Lord; that way, his life will be restored and secure. Again, there is merit to what Job’s friends are saying, but their observations don’t apply to their suffering friend. So Job fires back! He tells them they have a lot to learn. He makes it clear that he doesn’t deserve what he’s getting. Job still believes he is right with God. In fact, he adds that if The Lord were to slay him, he would be just as devoted to God as he ever was. Like many, Job is a little confused too. He assumes God is behind his misfortune, but He’s not. God is not sending lightning bolts from heaven, or bad luck to Job. Remember, it’s Satan who’s attacking Job! But Job resists the devil, and keeps going forward. Look… not all the bad things that happen to you are your fault. Bad things can happen for a number of reasons. So it’s important to be honest, objective, and quick to own your mistakes. It’s also important to trust God’s grace, and enjoy the security God’s love gives. Zophar doesn’t seem to have it. Today, be willing to look deep into your heart. Ask God to help you see your sin. But also ask God to help you see His deep love for you. Today, trust God’s grace, and let His love motivate you to serve Him with a growing sense of eternal security.
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12. (Job 16) “The Intercessor” Job’s friends have been little to no help. All they are able to do is accuse and condemn. But for some reason, Job has hope. Why? He believes he has a true friend who understands. His intercessor stands beside him and pleads his case to God. This gives Job some sense of peace in the middle of his turmoil. Though there may be times you feel like you don’t have a single friend in the world, you also have an intercessor. Your friend stands before God and speaks on your behalf. He tells his father all the good things about you. He vouches for you. This makes God look to you with great favor. Who is this intercessor? It’s Jesus! Today, be at peace when you experience turmoil and hardship. For, Jesus stands between you and your God to bring you closer together.
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13. (Job 19) “Job” Life has not been good for Job… His family and friends have disowned him. His dignity has been stripped away. His clout is all gone! No one honors him because no one respects him. People are laughing behind his back. Even his servants are ignoring his commands. Job still believes God is behind it. Yet, Job longs for a day when he will see his God with his own eyes. He is overwhelmed with excitement over the thought of meeting his God face to face! His respect for God stays intact as he expresses his disappointment to his friends. Job will not reject God simply because life isn’t working out like he wanted. In fact, it appears that Job’s faith is getting stronger!! How are you doing today? Has life blindsided you? Is something causing you to have some doubts about how much God loves you? If so, take heart!! God still loves you! Look forward to the day God will meet you face to face. Let your hope in Him fill you with great excitement… and press on!!
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14. (Job 22:1-24:25) “Job (again)” As Job’s friends continue to ride him with accusations, Job opens up with how he is feeling. He wonders where God is in all this. He can’t quite figure out why he is going through problem after problem. He knows he can’t control anything that’s happening. He knows God is in charge. He knows that God is fair. But Job knows something else. Something that his friends have overlooked. He knows that life is a series of one problem following another. He knows that after it’s all over, he will come out on the other side like purified gold. You see, Job believes there is purpose in his problems. That’s why his character is upright. That’s why he walks close to God. For, only God can get him through the toughest of times and make him like refined gold. How about you? What are you choosing to believe when you face your trouble today? Will your problems refine you, or will they fill you with resentment? Today, accept the fact that problems will be a normal part of your life. Admit that you have no control of anything except your response. Let your response be to trust the love and fairness of God; for He sees deep into your heart. Nothing escapes His notice. He knows what you are really about. He sees the good in you. And He is determined to use the crisis you face to purify and bring out the best in you; but only if you refuse to give up! Persevere!!! Persevere!!!
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15. (Job 29-31) “Job (yet again)” Job starts to look at his glory days in the past. The respect and admiration of others, he once enjoyed, is gone. He remembers the good times with family and friends. Life was good… Misery will do this… He recognizes that God was the source of all his prosperity and happiness. But now, Job believes God is no longer watching over him. His misery makes it feel like God is miles away. But God has not moved an inch. Can you identify with Job? Have there been times you felt all alone in your misery. In those moments did you assume God was miles away? Well, God was with you the whole time. He’s with you right now! Job will eventually figure this out. So it’s vital that you figure this out too. You see, it’s important that your suffering not be wasted through self pity. Today, believe that your problems now have a greater purpose. Realize that God is still with you! He hasn’t gone anywhere. He promises to bring something good out of the bad you experience. So hang in there!!! Let this encourage you to persevere through your seasons of suffering.
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16. (Job 32:1-37:24) “Elihu” While three of Job’s so called friends confront him, a young man sits in the group in silence. For days, he hasn’t uttered a single word. Finally, Elihu can’t stand it another minute. He starts talking… and keeps talking and talking without saying much of anything. Besides bragging about himself, Elihu’s message is no different than the other three. He too thinks Job is blind with arrogance and puffed up with pride. He says, “How dare you talk like you are innocent.” Well, Job isn’t innocent. He never claimed to be. All Job has been saying is that he didn’t do anything to deserve the punishment he assumes has come from God. Job is complaining! But it’s more about his misery than his God. You could say Job is saying “ouch” more than anything. But Elihu is empty of any empathy. He just keeps rambling on about a whole lotta nothin’. Later, God would remind Elihu and the other three how ridiculous they are. Today, let Elihu remind you that no one knows everything. Let his blunder encourage you to evaluate how you treat others who are going through a tough time. Let Elihu’s lack of empathy and understanding motivate you not to be so hardhearted with others, and be a little more understanding of what they may be going through. Who could use some understanding from you right now?
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17. (Job 38:1-42:17) “The Lord In The Storm” The sky darkens… Lighting flashes in the sky… Peals of thunder shake the earth… A storm is coming… Job lifts his eyes to the sky. The Lord speaks in the storm. Hmmm… The Lord often speaks in the storms. Why? Storms get your attention. People are most willing to listen when they are in a storm. Job has been through a hurricane of suffering. So when God speaks, Job puts his hand over his mouth. All he can do is repent of his humanness… all he can do is turn from his foolishness. For, Job is like you. You are a mere human. You really have no control. You only control one thing… your response to life. That’s all. Are you in a storm? If so, God is speaking to you. Are you listening to what God is saying? For, God will remind you in the storms of life that He IS in control and you are not. That’s the reality you need to accept. When you do, life will make more sense, and you can relax. Today, trust in the Lord and not in yourself. For, you are not capable to meet all your needs… and God IS!
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18. (Psalm 44, 74, 79, 80, 85, 89) “God’s Dove” Things are not good in Israel. These psalms were written after Babylon invaded The Promised Land. The temple in Jerusalem lies in rubble. Patches of people live here and there. So the psalmist writes as he reflects the history of God’s people. He remembers the glory days and the rebellion that led to captivity. But these psalms convey even more than that. They offer a glimmer of hope. One writer refers to God’s people as God’s dove. He sings: How can God turn back His love from His dove? Great question! The answer is simple and clear. God cannot turn away from His dove… and He won’t turn away from you! Yes, you can make a mess of things. And yes, life can crumble beneath you; but God can never, and will never, stop loving you. Why not? When He looks at you, He sees His cherished dove. Today, dwell on the message of these psalms and know God isn’t interested in crushing you. He is interested in changing you. For you are His dove!
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19. (Psalm 102, 106, 124, 137) “The Captives” These four psalms are not written by David; these were written during the Babylonian captivity of Israel. They are laments. In other words, they are sad songs. For, these songs are filled with anguish and regrets. They recall the ruins of Zion, (i.e., Jerusalem), and the ridicule of their Babylonian captors. One reviews the rebellious history of Israel. From Egypt to Babylon, Israel constantly butted heads with their God. Their rebellion resulted in suffering, wanderings, plagues, captivity, and death. It’s important to remember that though you may find these songs very sad, they can actually have a positive impact on your life. So take the time to read these carefully. If you ever wonder what indifference, complacency, and stubbornness can do, you get a pretty good idea from these songs. They have a lot to say about what your rebellion does to you and to God. Today, let these songs warn you of what a hard heart can lead to. Let these songs, today, urge you to surrender and submit to your Lord.
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20. (Daniel 7:1-8:27) “The Ancient Of Days” Daniel is having a vision… He sees lions, bears, leopards, and another beast that is very difficult to describe. It is very powerful and covered with 10 horns! What could these images possibly be about? They are about the future. They speak of Babylon, Persia, Greece, and Rome. These kingdoms would subdue and harm God’s people. But the vision Daniel is having gives every believer in God great hope. Though kingdoms will come and go, God – ‘The Ancient Of Days’ – will outlast them all. He will bring back His people, and they will reign together triumphant! There is some talk, today, of evil nations getting nuclear weapons and blowing up this planet. There are also websites and tabloids that speak of ‘death stars’ and ‘meteors’ zooming across space that will someday smash and destroy the earth. Hmmm…! It all sounds pretty serious doesn’t it? It’s enough to make you worry in fear. But it’s good to know that no matter how evil, frightening, or out of control the world may appear, you can be secure with confidence that God will continue to reign and rule. Yes, there may come a time you may die for your faith; and it’s possible the world could be destroyed. But remember that only ‘The Ancient Of Days’ will determine if and when these things will happen. Most of all, regardless of what happens, ‘The Ancient Of Days’ will never leave your side. God will stay with you until you make it safely back home. Today, trust God to control what you can’t. Entrust these unsettling times to the God who holds all of time in the palm of his hand. Trust Him to take care of you.
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21. (Daniel 5) “King Belshazzar” He is the son of Nebuchadnezzar. In his pride, King Belshazzar throws a big party. His guests drink from the goblets he pillaged from God’s Temple in Jerusalem. They are heard praising the gods of gold, silver, bronze, wood, and stone. All of a sudden, the fingers of a human hand appear from nowhere, and write on the wall a message of doom. The King shakes in his shoes!! A few days later, Belshazzar lies dead—assassinated! The Babylonian empire has suddenly come to an end. Belshazzar teaches you that when you begin to trust your money or materials over God, you will get yourself into trouble. It’s okay to be a good steward of the things you have; God wants that! But when you start to make major decisions based on what you have, rather than who has you, it’s going to change your priorities and lead to more costly mistakes. Don’t let this happen to you. Today, reserve the prominent place in your heart for the Lord. Let nothing else have greater influence on you than your God. Make Him and the purpose of His kingdom first, and expect God to bless you.
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22. (Daniel 6:1-28) “Darius” He is a Persian and a pagan! By the time Daniel is through with him, Darius is a believer. How did this happen? Darius is sizing up Daniel. He sees his character. He respects and admires Daniel. And when Daniel is falsely accused, Darius sees how Daniel handles adversity. For, Daniel trusts the Lord with the lions in his life. Darius sees God working powerfully in Daniel’s life. This influences him to trust God too. Do you realize people are watching you all the time? Darius-type people are looking for someone who has godly character. They are looking to see how powerfully God is working in you. They especially want to see how you handle adversity; you know, when things don’t turn out like you want. So what will they see from you? Will your character encourage them to trust the Lord? You can’t fake faith forever. It’s either legit or a lie. Which will it be for you? Will your faith be legit or a lie? Today, what will others learn about God from you? Today, dare to be a Daniel… and change the world!
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23. (Ezra 1:1- 4:5) “The Enemies Of Judah and Benjamin
No matter what you do for the Lord, be prepared for some opposition! There’s always someone who will try to throw a wrench in the works. That’s what happened to Ezra. As soon as the people began to rebuild the temple, the critics came out of the woodwork. They gave God’s people trouble all through the reign of King Cyrus too. What would you like to do for the Lord? Who can you expect to oppose you? Will you be ready? Don’t sweat it!! You might as well expect some opposition. For, you are making the Devil nervous!! Today, meet any opposition with the power of God. Call on God to help… and finish the job!!
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24. (Daniel 10:1-12:13) “The Guardians From Heaven” Daniel is visited by a celestial being—an angel. At first, Daniel is terrified. But after some help, he is able to stand on his feet. Daniel learns that the future of God’s people will be pretty bumpy but ultimately secure. What is the function of angels? James Burton Coffman sheds light on the activity of angels: The function of angels includes the following:

(1) They carry away the souls of the departed in death (Luke 16:22).

(2) They exercise diligence to watch over little children (Matt 18:11).

(3) All of the angels are engaged in the service of those who shall inherit salvation (Hebrews 1:14).

(4) They aid, providentially, in bringing sinners in contact with the gospel (Acts 8:26).

(5) They execute the sentence of God in the destruction of sinners whose importance justifies their immediate removal from the earth (Acts 12:23).

(6) One of the mightiest angels, The Angel of Revelation 10, has charge of maintaining “the little book,” (The Bible?) “until time shall be no more.”

(7) On special occasion, when God’s great prophets and preachers of the Word needed special encouragement, an angel of God stood by to inform, to prophesy, and to encourage (Acts 27:23).

This would appear to have been a special thing on behalf of the apostles. Here in Daniel, however, there is definitely another function of the blessed angels—that of influencing human affairs through human governments for the achievement of God’s purposes among men. Hopefully, you are getting the idea that angels are not the imagination of man, but are real, and have a viable function in God’s Kingdom and in your life. There is no reason to believe that God doesn’t use His angels today. So let The Guardians From Heaven fill you with confidence when afraid and inspiration to fulfill God’s purpose in you.
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25. (Ezra 4-6) “Bishlam, Mithredath, Tabeel
The rebuilding of Jerusalem is met with opposition… Go figure! Whenever you are trying to restore or rebuild what God wants, you can expect someone to throw a wet blanket on the project. Satan will use anything and anyone to discourage you and impeded your efforts. Here in Ezra, the work of Bishlam, Mithredath, and Tabeel STOPS THE WORK! The rebuilding project is dormant for nearly 25 years. You can imagine how frustrating this must have been for Ezra and Nehemiah. But God will get the ball rolling again, and the City of God will be up and running once again. What or who is Satan using to discourage you from working to build up God’s Kingdom? Is he using criticism? Is he capitalizing on your fears? Is he using a close friend? Whatever or whoever is getting in your way, remember to keep trusting God… and get to work!!! God eventually worked out the bugs in Ezra’s plans, and He will work them out for you… as long as you remain faithful, and persevere!
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26. (Haggai 1:1-2:9; Zechariah 1:1-6; Haggai 2:10-23) “Haggai
Haggai doesn’t give his preference or opinion as he speaks to the people. His motives are pure. He makes it clear that what he is speaking to the people is a message directly from God. He goes to the trouble of saying this 26 times in only 2 chapters!! This must be very important to communicate. What is at the core of what you are saying and doing? Is it a personal preference? Could it be jaded by pride and selfishness? What is the real motive behind your words and actions? Only you can answer this question. You would be astonished at how many folks appear to be saying godly words, and doing godly things – out of anger, fear, pride, or selfishness – only to push their particular preference. Today, look deeply at the motives behind what you are saying and doing for The Lord. Make sure what you say and do is what God would want.
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27. (Zechariah 3) “Joshua” Zechariah has a vision about the future. A priest is standing before him. His name is Joshua. He’s a mess!! He’s dressed in filthy clothes. Who is this man? Who does he represent? This man represents the remnant (the few that are left) of Israel. They stand before God, filthy with their sin. But God has ‘Joshua’ remove these rags, and clothes him in clean, priestly garments. This vision promised that Israel would one day be cleansed of their sin. This would happen when the ‘Branch’… the ‘Stone’ would appear. The branch and stone, of coarse, are references to Jesus!! Imagine the excitement of hearing this! One day, Jesus would come and cleanse the remnant of Israel along with the rest of the world. When Jesus came to earth, he took all of man’s filthiness (including yours) to the cross and made him (and you) clean. All He asks is that you walk in His ways and obey him. No matter how far you’ve drifted from God… No matter how much of a mess you’ve made of things… Remember that God can cleanse you and restore you. He clothes you in Christ. He gives you priestly clothing to wear. He gives you a fresh start and a new life dedicated to service. Today, let God’s redemption and restoration motivate you to active service in His Kingdom.
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28. (Zechariah 7:1-8:23) “The Remnant” What’s left of God’s people, are beginning to return to Jerusalem. The temple is still unfinished. What are they to do once they return? They are to basically do the same thing God required of them before the captivity occurred: They are to show kindness and mercy to each other; they are to be fair with one another; they are to treat each other with integrity. Their treatment of each other was just as important as their Temple! There’s a lesson here: How you treat other people is very important to your Lord! He desires that you show mercy to others, more than offering a sacrifice to Him. That’s pretty important; because it doesn’t matter how much your worship goes toward God, if your worship isn’t followed by love and kindness toward other people. Your worship is a waste of time if you’re not also loving the people around you. So… what do you think God wants from you today? It’s the same thing He wanted from you yesterday—He wants you to treat other people with mercy and kindness; He wants you to treat others fairly. Today, make this your worship toward God.
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29. (Psalm 78) “Asaph” Not all of the Psalms are written by David. Some are written by Asaph. He lived during the captivity. This psalm recalls the stubbornness of Israel. In spite of God’s generosity and power, Israel would constantly forget their Lord. They would ignore Him… how sad. Israel would slowly grow tired of God, and put Him to the test. They would get caught up in other things and other gods. This approach led God’s people into years of senseless misery and eventually bondage. Yet, God loved them and would forgive them over and over again. Have you ever put God to the test? Are you putting God to the test right now? If so, why? What do you hope to gain by being hardheaded? You can test God’s patience, but you will not break His love for you. You may have to go through the ringer before you will change, but never forget this: God will keep loving you. He will love you through the consequences of your poor choices, and will be there to help you back… if you ever want to turn it around.
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30. (Psalm 107, 116, 118, 125) “The Redeemed
Whether the redeemed are in darkness or despair, when they call out to their God, the Lord delivers them. These Psalms encourage the redeemed to praise their God and tell the story of how He delivered them from all kinds of trouble. What kind of trouble are you facing today? Have you called out to God for help? Who needs some hope? Who needs to know that God can help them in their time of need? Do others know ‘your story’? Do they know about the moments God delivered you from trouble? You are evidence of The Lord’s power. What a great way to bring glory to God and give others hope. Today, share a time The Lord helped you. Today, look for an opportunity to give your God the credit.
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DailyPeople – October   |   Tim Gill

1. (Psalm 126) “The Dreamers” They are finally coming home!
After 70 years of captivity, the people of God are returning to Israel, and the King of Persia is financing it! Wow!! So it’s an understatement for the psalmist to compare the euphoric atmosphere, among those returning, to dreaming. But this is what it was like. For, dreaming is an exciting thing to do! It’s awesome to look to the future with such positive anticipation. Good days were definitely ahead for Israel. The sights and sounds of worship were returning to Jerusalem! The people were coming back to God; and He was blessing them! They could live their lives with joy. This is true for every believer today. If you are a believer, get excited! For God has brought you out of your captivity, and restores the life He created you to live. He blesses you when you turn to Him. He rewards your obedience with a secure and peaceful future. It’s like a wonderful dream! But in your case, it’s no dream. It’s reality!! So look ahead with great excitement. For, when you trust the Lord, His promises are surely yours!!
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2. (Zechariah 9:1-14:21) “The Coming King” Zechariah speaks of a King returning to Jerusalem. He is entering the city… not with an entourage of soldiers or a parade of dignitaries. No… This King is entering Jerusalem, riding on a donkey—a colt. Does this sound familiar? It should! Jesus would fulfill this prophecy (Matt 21:5) when He entered Jerusalem. What does this mean? It means the King of Kings was humble. He was born in a stable… He was a carpenter’s son. One time, He wrapped a towel around his waist and wasted dirty feet. He humbled himself on a cross and never complained about it! This is your King! This is your role model. Today, approach the things you do, and the people you meet, with humility. Go out of your way to serve others. Humble yourself… and imitate your King!!
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3. (Esther 1:1-4:17) “Esther” She is stunning without wearing any makeup! She becomes a queen. She saves her nation. Esther is an example of God putting the right person in the right place at the right time. Do you think God works this way today? Do you think He still puts the right people in the right place at the right time? Do you think He could do this with you? He does! You work where you are on purpose. You live in your neighborhood for a reason. God has you cross paths with people every day for good reason. He wants to change a life! God believes you are perfect for the job. Today, be aware of God’s providence. Be on the lookout for the opportunities God gives you. Let Him use you to reach others.
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4. (Esther 5:1-10:3) “Haman” Talk about a plan that backfires! Fueled by hate, Haman’s plot to kill Mordecai begins to unravel and go down in flames. Hmmm… Think about it… Over the centuries, evil men have tried to destroy God’s people. They have beaten, burned, boiled, and beheaded His followers; but God’s people have survived. Why? No one can stop what God plans… NO ONE! If God is in it, it will succeed. If it’s manmade, it will fall on its face. You can count on it! As a believer, realize you live in God’s plans. His plan is to save you and to use you. So don’t be intimidated by those who try to frighten you or discourage you! Keep going forward, and trust God’s plan for you. He will see to it that His plans will succeed!
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5. (Malachi 1:1-4:6) “God’s Special Treasure” It isn’t long after the return of the exiles that God’s people begin to slip back into the sin that got them into trouble in the first place. Malachi comes down hard on God’s people. He confronts the source of their blemished sacrifices. It’s a lack of love for God. He hits hard their hypocrisy. He challenges them to change. A few listen and turn back to The Lord (3:16-18). The Lord is pleased. He grants mercy and blessing to those who turn to Him. He treats the obedient as His special treasure. That’s because they are! Is the Lord getting your best, or is He getting your leftovers? If you are giving God less than your best, you need to change this! For, your leftovers will never honor your God, and He will never bless you. But if you will start honoring your Lord by giving Him your best, He will treat you with favor as his special treasure. By turning to Him and obeying His word, you will experience His grace and generosity. Will you do this today? What would be the best way for you to honor God today?
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6. (Ezra 7:8) “Ezra” He would be one of the first to return to Jerusalem. He would motivate a nation of people to rebuild the Temple. Why does God use Ezra? How is Ezra able to motivate so many people? The Bible may give a clue… Here’s what Ezra 7:8-10 says: … the gracious hand of his God was on him. This was because Ezra had determined to study and obey the Law of the Lord and to teach those decrees and regulations to the people of Israel. God is gracious to Ezra because of his commitment and discipline to understand and apply the scripture to himself… before he taught others. He knew his teaching would be useless if he failed to live it in his own life. Look…Your capacity to lead is deeply rooted in your commitment to follow. If you want to change your family, workplace, church, or ministry, it’s going to take a disciple who starts with himself! Nothing takes away the impact of your influence as much as your failure to apply God’s word to your own life. No one takes a hypocrite seriously!! How much do your words match your life? Today, make a decision to be serious about obeying God’s will. In this way, what you say to others will have maximum impact.
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7. (Ezra 9:1-10:44) “Shekaniah” Ezra hears some alarming news and begins to weep before God in prayer. He is ashamed! For, the men have intermarried with pagan women! As Ezra mourns over this, Shekaniah walks up and begins to confess his sin. To make it right, Shekaniah offers to divorce his wife. Most of the returning exiles follow suit. This purged and purified the nation of sin. This humble act, started a practice that blessed the rest of the remnant. Shekaniah is an example of how one man can influence the rest. When one man gets serious with his sin, he inspires others to get serious too. When one man gets serious about seeking God’s kingdom first, the rest of a small group, the workplace, and the church, are all encouraged to raise the bar. What are you inspiring others to do in your small group, family, and workplace? Today, raise the bar for the folks around you by getting serious with yourself. Encourage others by personally setting the spiritual tone in your relationships… and watch God bless!
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8. (Nehemiah 1:1-3:32) “Nehemiah” The walls surrounding Jerusalem lie in runs. The temple has become a pile of rubble. The returning exiles are trickling in. When Nehemiah hears about the condition of Zion, he begins to shake his head and weep. He prays through his tears. He cannot eat. This goes on for days. How do you feel when you see your church not doing so well? Does it bother you to see new people just ‘trickling in’? What will you do when you see the ‘ruins’? Here’s what Nehemiah does: 1- With humility, he calls out to God. 2- He fasts! 3- He rallies the people who can change the situation. 4- He goes to work! Today, get convicted about the health of your church! Admit you’re part of the problem; call out to God; grab a few friends; get to work… and watch God bless it!
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9. (Nehemiah 4:1-6:16) “Sanballat, Tobiah and Geshem” With the rebuilding of the wall under way, it isn’t long before opposition begins to form. Sanballat, Tobiah, and Geshem start giving Nehemiah the business through criticism, threats, and intimidation. But Nehemiah and the people keep their heads down. They pray… prepare… and persevere! The wall is finished in 52 days! Sanballat, Tobiah, and Geshem are poor examples of how to address the work of others in God’s Kingdom. They criticize and condemn Nehemiah’s work, but they are powerless and can’t stop the mission. Why? It’s the will of God and the last thing you want to be is on the wrong side of the will of God! You don’t want to be fighting God; that will not end well. So… When you hear of ‘kingdom work’ going on, what will be your response? Will you pray for its success, or will you trash talk and gossip while hoping it fails? Remember, you don’t want to be on the wrong side of what God is doing. Today, while you work in God’s Kingdom, support other work in other places with your prayers.
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10. (Nehemiah 7:1-72, Nehemiah 11:1-12:26) “Hanani and Hananiah” The rebuilding of the wall around the city of Jerusalem is now complete. But the city has only a few inhabitants. Only a few houses have been built. So God puts it on Nehemiah’s heart to call on people like Hanani and Hananiah to bring more people to the city. Does this sound familiar? There is plenty of room for more people in God’s Kingdom. He’s looking for those already in to bring others into His Kingdom. Will you be one of them? Today, pray for God to use you to bring others into His Kingdom.
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11. (Nehemiah 7:73-10:39) “Mattithiah, Shema, Anaiah, Uriah, Hilkiah, Maaseiah; Pedaiah, Mishael, Malkijah, Hashum, Hashbaddanah, Zechariah and Meshullam” It all comes back to the Word Of God. It doesn’t matter what you accomplish in life if God’s Word isn’t your focus. Notice that the wall is up… the Temple is rebuilt. But there is something more important that must be established in Israel. Ezra stands before a crowd that has gathered together for a special dedication. He begins to read aloud the Word Of God. The people reflect and begin to weep… Why? The Word Of God is life. The Word Of God is everything. Without God’s Word, the nation will crumble. Thirteen men stand beside Ezra as a gesture of devotion and solidarity. This encourages the rest of the people to stand on God’s Word. It all comes back to the Word Of God!! Where do you stand? Is it clear that you stand on God’s Word? How often do you go to God’s Word for answers? How often do you use it in your conversations with others? Are you standing with your leaders to encourage a commitment to closely follow God’s Word? Are other believers encouraged to look into God’s Word by your example? Today, start depending on God’s Word; because it all comes back to the Word Of God.
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12. (Nehemiah 12:31-13:31) “Nehemiah” He wasn’t a priest or a spiritual professional. He wasn’t a preacher or prophet. Nehemiah was an employee for the King of Persia, and he used his talents and skills to rebuild and restore Jerusalem. You don’t have to be a spiritual professional to do something significant for The Lord. All you need to do is use the talents and skills God has given you to help rebuild and restore, (i.e., change), lives that are torn down by sin. How do you plan to use the gifts God has blessed you with? Today, start thinking of ways you can use the gifts, talents, and treasures God has given you, to change a life. Ask God to help you recognize the opportunities to rebuild and restore the broken lives around you. Rejoice when it occurs!!
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13. (1 Chronicles 1:1-4:23) “Ibhar” A long list of names covers this chapter. Who are these people? Why are they listed here? These are the names of men and women who God used for generations. They cover thousands of years. By the way, Ibhar is one of the sons of David. No one knows anything about him. Maybe that’s the point. Most of these names share a similar trait with Ibhar. No one knows anything about them except that they played a part in God’s story of redemption. In a way, you share the same history in His story. Someday people will look back at a long list of names, and yours will be among them. They may not know exactly who you are or what you did, but they know you are in some way connected to their lives. For, your faithfulness made it possible for them to hear the story and find redemption. Today, make some history by touching the future! Pass on the good news to another generation. Years from now, you may be lost in a long list of forgotten names, but your impact will none the less remain; and God will always remember your part in His story.
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14. (1 Chronicles 9) “Uthai, Asaiah, Jeuel, and Sallu” Perhaps one of the most neglected chapters in all the Bible, the first 9 chapters of 1 Chronicles accurately lists all the members on the family tree that make up the 12 tribes of God’s people. At face value, these chapters seem redundant and irrelevant. But these chapters made it possible for Ezra to restore the legitimate theocracy in Jerusalem when the exiles returned from captivity. This ensured that the Levites were in charge of the offerings, and that the right people were in place to offer proper sacrifices. These chapters also give you hope. For, there is a list of names of those who came back home! Uthai, Asaiah, Jeuel, and Sallu are a fraction of the many who would return home. Hmmm… There is a list being compiled right now of those who are going to return to God and be with Him forever. Can you say you are on this list? Today, strive to be faithful to God, and carry on His work.
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15. (Between The Testaments) “The One Who Waits” It’s kind of strange… There seems to be a dramatic pause in the history of Israel. The Bible reader is left to secular history to determine what is going on in the world. Nothing is heard from Heaven for nearly 400 years. Why? Did God’s people have anything to record? Yes, but not from the lips of God. Israel is left to wait for the Messiah… and no one likes to wait!! Are you having to wait for God to speak or act? It’s grueling isn’t it? It’s hard to wait for His door to open. It’s painful to wait for Him to turn things around. It’s difficult to wait for an answer to your prayer. But remember… it’s worth the wait! So if you are waiting for God to do something, hang in there and persevere. He will act when He feels the time is right. And when he does… it will be worth the wait!
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16. (Between The Testaments) “The Writers of the Apocrypha” The Apocrypha include 39 separate writings and are not part of the Bible. Though many of them seem to shed light on Jewish life during the time between the testaments, many are either bordering on fiction, or have serious historical problems with accuracy. This is why they were not included in the Bible. These writings do not appear to add or take away from the main teachings of the Bible. That may be why some religious groups include the apocrypha in their Bible. Whatever the case, you may want to research this yourself, online, and draw your own conclusion. By the way, researching scriptures and historical accounts on your own can build and deepen your faith in the word of God.
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17. (Between The Testaments) “The Culture” You’d think as soon as God’s people were allowed to return home, they would. But not everyone returned to Zion. Many would stay behind. Some decided to continue to be faithful where they were, while others got caught up in the ideas and values of the Persian empire that were foreign to God’s will. Following the God who delivered them out of Egypt, didn’t seem that appealing any more. They incorporated different gods, different religious values, and different ideals. That’s what a culture can do. As you look at the worldliness of your society, ask yourself how much your culture will influence your spirituality. For, your culture is influencing you right now. Your friends, family, and media are shaping how you look at God and His purpose. Today, take steps to prevent your culture from pulling you away from the core values God wants you to have. Let God shape your ethics, your expectations, and your core ideals.
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18. (Mark 1:1; John 1:1-18; Luke 1:1-4) “Jesus” He fulfills a promise that God gave at the beginning of man (Gen 3:15). He created all things. ALL THINGS!! He is the first and the last word from God. Isaiah called Him Emanuel; because He is God and actually dwelled among men. The gospels record His life more than any other source. His teachings have changed lives. His word can change your life too. His parents would name Him Jesus, (The one who saves), and He would save the world. How much do you know about Jesus! How well do you know Him? How well do you know His teachings? In the next few weeks, read carefully your Daily Bible, and absorb all of who Jesus is. Seriously read the gospels and deepen your understanding of your Lord. Notice how He treated people. Catch what He was trying to say. What He says matters more than anything else. For, His words give life. Observe how mankind treated Him. Read for yourself, and realize how much Jesus loves you. You don’t want to let Him slip through your fingers.
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19. (Matthew 1:1-17; Luke 3:23-38) “The Family Tree” Have you ever thought about all the people that have gotten you here? How far can you note them by name? There’s your mother and father, grandparents, great grandparents, and then it gets a little hazy from there on back. All the names in your lineage have stories that include pivotal moments that determined whether or not you’d be reading this text today. Two of the gospels trace the lineage of Jesus. One traces back to Abraham, while the other goes all the way back to Adam. Why? There are two major reasons: 1- Jesus’ lineage proves He is the rightful heir to the throne of David. He is a King! 2- This list of names also traces and confirms the bloodline of The Messiah. There is a third to consider. These genealogies show how much God was involved in bringing His son to you! These names confirm God’s provenance. There is a story connected to each of these names. They show how God worked through floods, famines, captivities, as well as a host of defining and pivotal moments to finally bring Jesus to earth. These names confirm God’s love and power and wisdom that He used to bring salvation to you! It’s worth praising God every time you think of it. Think about this: Where would you be without your heritage? Where would you be without His?
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20. (Luke 1:5-80; Matthew 1:18-25; Luke 2:1-38) “Anna” She was in her early 20’s when she lost her husband after 7 years of marriage. For the rest of her life, she worships at the temple all day long… every day. It’s in worship she finds great comfort and peace. But Anna discovers something special. As she worships, she yearns for someone to deliver her from all her hurts. She prays and fasts as she waits for the Messiah. So when Mary and Joseph arrive at the temple to dedicate their son, she is overjoyed. She runs up to the trio and gives thanks to God. With great excitement, she speaks about Jesus to all who would listen. Why? She sees her healing in the arms of a mother. She sees a bigger picture too. She knows there’s something big going on. God is about to do something amazing! The Prince Of Peace is about to bring healing to all! How much does the arrival of Jesus excite you? For, since he came to earth, God has been working on something big. He’s been working to bless you… to heal you… to change you. Today, praise God for sending Jesus. Give thanks to God for His great love. Speak to those who will listen… about Jesus!
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21. (Matthew 2:1-23; Luke 2:39-52) “The Magi” A group of men are looking for Jesus. They have traveled thousands of miles from Persia in search of the Messiah. When they find him, they open their treasures and worship him. What a powerful lesson! What you do with your treasures says a lot about how much you treasure your God. For what you worship will get the most and the best of your time, your talents, your money, and your attention. Think about it… You invest the best you have in what is most important to you. Everything else gets… your leftovers. So what treasures are you offering to God? Is The Lord getting your best, or is He getting your leftovers? How will you worship God? Today, worship your Lord by dedicating and offering what you treasure most to Him.
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22. (Luke 3:1-23; Matthew 3:4-6, 13-17, Matthew 4:1-11; John 1:19-34) “John The Baptist” He seems to resemble a mountain man more than a messenger. He lives in the wild. He wears primitive clothes and eats bugs. But when John The Baptist appears, it’s clear he has a mission; it’s to prepare people to know the Christ. With boldness, he breaks the ice and speaks up about Jesus. You don’t have to be a polished professional to make an impact for Christ; but you do have to be bold! For, this is how God spreads the Good News. He spreads it through those who dare to come out of their shell and talk about spiritual matters with the people they meet. Not everyone will be open and welcome to what you say, but there is always someone who will. You won’t know until you speak up. Today, ask the Lord to give you an extra bit of courage as you meet other people on your campus, at your workplace, or in your community. Don’t be afraid to offer an invitation to an event, a word of encouragement, or give a little nudge toward God. Your boldness will help others believe.
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23. (Luke 3:1-23; Matthew 3:4-6, 13-17, 4:1-11; John 1:19-34)
The Devil” When you stop and think about it, there is a long casualty list of people who Satan has destroyed. How is he able to do this? The Devil never fights fair… He will find your weakness and exploit it. He will use anything and anyone he can to take you down. Even Jesus was tempted by Satan. But Jesus used scripture, prayer, and some common sense to successfully resist Satan’s schemes. How is the Devil messing with you? What is Satan using to tempt you? When tempted by the Devil, take a page out of the playbook of Jesus Christ. Prepare yourself with lots of prayer… Look to the scriptures for guidance… Think about the outcome yielding to your temptations by using the noggin God gave you. Today, be prepared when Satan will tempt you. Resist the Devil. Meet your moments of temptation with grit and godly determination. For, after the dust settles, you will still be standing! Always remember that when your character has been tested, the fires of temptation will temper and strengthen your faith.
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24. (Luke 3:19-20; Matthew 4:12-25; Luke 4:14-30, Luke 5:1-26;
Mark 1:21-2:12) “Simon” He makes his living catching fish with his brother. But Simon’s life is about to drastically change. For The Master is going to interrupt Simon’s routine with a greater purpose than catching a few fish. Instead of being caught up in making a living, Simon will dedicate his life to making a difference. Suddenly, his nets fall to the ground; he leaves them behind and follows his Lord. From this moment on, Simon will fish for men. You are on this earth for more than making and spending some money. God created you for more than satisfying your personal indulgences. Like Simon, you are here for a greater purpose than making a living. God put you here to make a difference. Today, Jesus calls to you, “Come follow me.” Will you let go of your nets, and take hold of your mission? Will you start fishing for men?
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25. (Mark 2:13-3:19; Luke 5:27-6:19; Matthew 9:9-17, 12:1-21;
John 5:1-47) “Levi” He is named after the priestly tribe of Israel, but he is no saint! Tax collectors were, by and large, crooked. For, many of them would line their pockets by overcharging the people. Men like Levi were viewed as extensions of a corrupt governing system; that’s why the people despised tax collectors. But Jesus sees something else in Levi. He sees a disciple. So when He calls Levi to follow Him, Levi leaves everything behind and follows Jesus. And when Levi has Jesus in his home, the critics shake their heads in disgust. “What are you doing?” they ask. “What am I doing?” The Lord replies. “I’m doing what my Father would do. I’m doing what I was sent to do. I’m loving people!” Aren’t you glad He did? The story of Levi represents how God feels about all the foul ups in the world. No matter how messed up you are, God loves you and wants you. You matter! He stretches his arms out on a cross and says, “I love you this much.” God treasures you, and He invites you to follow Him to experience a better life. A life of purpose. Today, let go of all the things that clutter your mind with worry and guilt. Today, think about Jesus and Levi and appreciate God’s great love for you.
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26. (Matthew 5:1-7:29; Luke 6:20-49) “The Pure In Heart
What do you think of when you hear the word pure? Do you associate the word purity with things like water and food? Jesus makes a promise. He says the pure in heart will see God. What do you think having a pure heart is all about? Having a pure heart is about having pure motives. It’s about being a person of integrity. Pure in heart is not about being gullible; it’s about pursuing innocence. Pure in heart is about having godly character. It’s wanting to live upright when no one is looking. It’s having a deep desire to honor God and do what is right because it’s right. A pure heart is honest and keeps clear of corruption. It’s refusing to live a lie. A pure heart is open. A pure heart turns all the cards over. A pure heart carries a good reputation of decency. A pure heart doesn’t think about itself. Do you have a pure heart? Better yet, will you have a pure heart? Today, purify your heart. Cleanse your motives of selfishness and greed. Let your intentions today be about pleasing God and honoring His name.
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27. (Matthew 8:5-13, 11:2-19, 12:22-50; Luke 7:1-8:3)
The Sinful Woman” An awkward moment ensues as an uninvited guest crashes the dinner party. A woman stands weeping behind Jesus. She has a bad reputation in town. Her tears fall from her eyes onto the Master’s feet. She tries to wipe them off. Then she starts to kiss the Lord’s feet and pour expensive perfume on them. The fragrance fills the dining room. The host shakes his head in disgust and mutters to himself: “If he only knew what kind of woman she is, he wouldn’t let her do that to him.” But Jesus does know what kind of woman she is, and He forgives her sins! You can never be too bad for God to forgive you. No matter how sinful you are, God can wipe the slate clean… He wants to! Praise God!! How will you respond to the amazing grace of God? Today, let God’s forgiveness humble you in gratitude. Be determined to honor your God for His great love for you.
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28. (Luke 13:10-17) “The Crippled Woman” For 18 years she has suffered. Imagine 18 years of being unable to stand straight up. Hunched over, she lived among her community. Not only is she physically crippled, she is spiritually and socially crippled. At the mere sight of her, people turn away. When children see her, they point and laugh. Others assume she must have done something evil to deserve her ailment. They find her hideous! Imagine the limitations she faced every day. She believes she would be this way for the rest of her life. It had to be discouraging. But this would all change when she meets the Son of God. Jesus would touch her and set her free from her years of suffering. How has Satan damaged you? What are you suffering from today? Is it a hurt? Is it a hang up? Is it a stronghold? It doesn’t have to be physical. You’ve had it for years… It has beaten you down. You are beginning to think you will have to live with it the rest of your life. Well, it doesn’t have to be this way. Just bring your trouble to Jesus and he will set you free! Trust the power of The Son of God to heal and restore you.
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29. (Matthew 13:1-30, 36-43; Mark 4:21-29; Matthew 13:31-35, 44-52; Mark 4:33-34) “The Hearer” Over and over, Jesus challenges people to really listen to what He says. Anyone can hear Jesus. You can hear what He says, and still miss the point. But it takes something else to listen. It takes an open mind. It takes humility. It takes a deep desire to learn. Are you listening to what Jesus is trying to tell you? Today, make a commitment to be a lifelong learner of Jesus Christ. Don’t settle with just knowing a little more information. Deeply desire to understand the deep truths of God… and be transformed.
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30. (Mark 5:1-20) “The Demon Possessed Man” He’s insane! Demons are constantly tormenting him. His friends and family have given up trying to help him. They send him away. So he lives among the tombstones on the edge of town. He cuts himself and cries out in pain. The people in the nearby town shut their windows and ignore him. They, too, feel powerless to help their friend. But when Jesus meets this hopeless man, He changes everything. Jesus helps him get his sanity back! The townspeople find this man clothed and in his right mind. Jesus had healed him. Can Jesus heal physical illness? Yes! Can He heal mental illness? Of course He can! Are you experiencing some mental anguish? What lie are you choosing to believe that is driving you crazy? What mental ‘demon’ is tormenting you? How are your evil thoughts effecting you? Today, turn your thoughts to Jesus, and find healing. Let God change the way you think! Bring your worries to Jesus. Let His words shape your thoughts and ideas. Ask Him to give you peace of mind.
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31. (Matthew 9:35-10:4; Mark 6:7; Matthew 10:5-42, 11:1; Luke 9:6; Mark 6:14-16; Luke9:7-9; Matthew 14:3-12; Mark 6:17-33; Luke 9:10-11; John 6:1-2) “The Twelve” The twelve disciples were a motley crew! This special group of men included young and old; bold and shy; impulsive, as well as cautious. One of them was loyal, while another was a little shady. You could say they weren’t the sharpest tools in the shed; but these guys would work together and turn the world upside down. They loved and supported each other through the good and the bad. They stuck together too. What made this group so effective was their devotion to Jesus. Do you have a group like this in your life? Could you use a group of Christian friends in your life? Every believer needs a small group of disciples that they can talk to. Every believer needs a network of redemptive friendships that will help them grow. Today, ask God to lead you to a group of devoted followers. Take the steps to be a part of an active group of believers.
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DailyPeople – November   |   Tim Gill

1. (Mark 6:34-7:23; John 6:5-7:1; Matthew 14:28-33, 15:10-20)
A Ghost” The Disciples have had a long and exciting day. They get into a boat and start heading to Bethsaida. But the winds fight against them as they strain to row across the sea. Suddenly they see a figure. It looks like a ghost, and he’s coming their way. Yikes!! In fear, the disciples begin to panic and put everything they’ve got into the oars. Stroke! Stroke! But it’s no use; the wind is too strong. The ghost is gaining ground. It turns out, the terrible ghost is Jesus… They are relieved. Are there times when Jesus scares you? Are there times when you are frightened of what The Lord might want from you? Do His teachings ever intimidate you? Are you scared of what Jesus might do if you fully trusted Him with everything? There’s nothing to be scared of. He’s not your ghost; He’s your God. He loves you and wants what is best for you. Yes, trusting Him can be a little scary; but it’s when you trust Him the most, that He will bless you with the best. Think about it… Peter got to walk on water!! What a life’s changing moment!! Today, face your fears of God with your faith in God. Don’t be afraid, just believe!!
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2. (Matthew 15:21-31; Mark 7:24-8:26; Matthew 16:1-12)
The Canaanite Woman” She is in way over her head. So she begs Jesus to help her with her daughter. But this woman is a foreigner and is getting nowhere. Jesus initially refuses to help her. He feels He should be taking care of God’s people over her. He calls her a dog! In desperation, she points out that even dogs eat the crumbs that fall from the master’s table. Her humility impresses Jesus so much that He heals her daughter. What is this really about? It’s about God rewarding humility. It doesn’t matter if you are ‘in’ or ‘out’ as long as you are humble. For, God opposes the proud, but gives His grace to the humble. Humility is quick to admit any shortcomings or wrongs. Humility recognizes the supremacy of God over the powerlessness of self. Humility is being openhearted and vulnerable when facing problems. Are you humble? Do you accurately see yourself as you truly are? Today, humble yourself before God. Admit your inability and power to control 99.99% of your life. The sooner you do, the more God can help you.
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3. (Matthew 16:13-23; Mark 8:34-9:1; Matthew 17:1-21; Luke 9:36; Mark 9:14-9:50; Matthew 17:24-18:35) “Simon Peter
At times, he could say the most amazing things; and, only minutes later, stick his foot in his mouth! But when Peter was asked who Jesus was, he got it right! “You are the Son Of God!” He answered. Who is Jesus to you? Is He a prophet? He’s more than a prophet! Is Jesus a good man? He’s much more than a good guy. Is He your Savior? Of course He is. But Jesus is more than someone who got you out of a jam. He is also Lord! He is King of Kings, and Lord of Lords. He is God in the flesh! He actually conquered death! He has authority over everything and everyone. Only God can have this kind of power. So… Who will you say Jesus is today?
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4. (John 7:17) “Anyone” As you read the Bible, do you ever wonder if what God says is true? A lot of people do. A lot of people have trouble trusting the Bible. They will tell you that the Bible is outdated. They will tell you that it doesn’t apply anymore. They will tell you that it doesn’t work. For many folks, God’s word does not work in their lives because they have either misunderstood it, expected something else from it, or have trusted it only for a little while. Jesus promises that anyone – ANYONE – who chooses to do the will of God will discover that God’s word is true. For example, you do not know if a chair can hold your body until you trust it enough to put your full weight on it. The same is true with God’s word. You can read and research the scriptures until your head explodes; but there’s really no other way to know if God’s word has any weight until you fully trust it and apply it. Is there something in the Bible you have a hard time believing? Is there something in the Bible that you have a hard time accepting as true? Today, try to test these passages. Put your full weight on them and see what happens. By applying it, you will soon discover how true God’s Word is. Your promises have been thoroughly tested, and your servant loves them. Psalm 119:140 (NIV)
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5. (John 8:12-10:21) “The Blind” Close your eyes and try to imagine what it must be like to be born blind. Imagine never seeing the sunrise, blue skies, stars, flowers, or the faces of your family and friends. Then, all of a sudden, you are able to see!! A major part of enjoying life is being able to see. But Jesus is dealing with more than a man who is blind; He is dealing with people who cannot see the will of God. This is the worst thing about being spiritually blind. Imagine waiting for the Messiah, and when He finally comes, you cannot recognize Him; you refuse to ‘see’ Him! But Jesus wants to open the eyes of His people. He wants to open your eyes too. He wants you to clearly see the truth about what sin does to you, and what God did about it. He wants you to see how deeply He loves you. He wants you to see that you can change. Now, He may use an unusual way to open your eyes. He may use an accident, a disease, a person, or a passage of scripture to open your eyes to what is really going on. The question is: Will you let Him open your eyes? What does God want you to see today? What does He want you to realize? Today, let God open your eyes!
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6. (Luke 10:38-41) “Mary” You can hear the noise of housework. Two sisters are frantically getting ready for a visit from Jesus. But one stops what she is doing, while the other is hard at work. Mary stops what she is doing and sits down to listen to the Master. Martha is livid! Martha can’t believe Mary is doing nothing. But the truth is, Mary IS doing something; she’s chosen something better. She has chosen to give her full attention to Jesus. Everyone faces what some call the crazies. Life can be so busy with the urgent, that it can eventually crowd out the important. Your culture will pressure you to pursue pleasures and possessions over the presence of God. You can probably think of a few times when something else took your attention away from God. When these things collide, will you choose what is better? Mary made her choice, and you must too. Today, look carefully at your priorities. Don’t give God your leftovers. Make sure God gets your best.
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7. (Luke 16) “The Shrewd Manager” For years he had been cheating the public and skimming money off the top to line his own pockets. But one day, he’s finally caught. The owner wants to see the books. The manager panics! He is not prepared for this. He knows he is going to lose his job. What does he do? He calls in his debtors and lowers their bill. Why? He is hoping his fairness and generosity will help him later when he’s out of work. The owner compliments his shrewd management. Why? The manager is thinking ahead; He’s preparing for the future. How about you? What are your plans revealing about your stewardship? How far are you looking down the road? Do most of your dreams and plans deal with the time you have left on the earth, or do they include the life beyond the grave? Will your plans include your eternity? Today, be shrewd! Start right now!! Prepare for the future with your eternity in mind. It’s the wisest decision you could make.
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8. (John 11) “Lazarus” He had been dead for 4 days! 4 Days!! When Jesus arrives, people are weeping and sad. Jesus even gets chewed-out for arriving late. But this would soon change. For, Jesus would walk up to an occupied tomb and make it vacant once again. With three words, a man would walk out of his grave. Jesus would use His dear friend Lazarus as an example of His immense power over death. You see, Lazarus represents all the things in your life that appear impossible to change. When the power of God is unleashed, the impossible things you face can suddenly change! That’s the power of the Resurrection. God promises that the same power that raised Lazarus and His son from the dead can radically change your life too. God can bring life back into whatever is dead. Where could you use God’s power in your life? What are you doing to unleash His power in your life? Today, trust the Lord to help you. Rely on Him, and start facing the impossible with greater hope. For, when you trust the Lord, He works powerfully in your life.
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9. (Luke 19) “Zacchaeus” He isn’t very big, and he isn’t very popular. For, Zacchaeus is a sawed-off tax collector. Yet, The Lord’s encounter with Zacchaeus has some huge implications about how God feels about you.
1- No matter who you are, God notices you. Everyone else tries to ignore Zacchaeus. But Zacchaeus doesn’t escape the Lord’s notice. You are so significant to God that He sacrificed His own son for you.
2- No matter what you’ve done, God cares about you. Tax collectors had horrible reputations. They cheated people to line their pockets with cash. Yet Jesus would invite himself over to Zacchaeus’ house. You can have the worst reputation in town, and God will still love you; He will still want you.
3- No matter how sinful you’ve been, God can forgive you. Zacchaeus stands up and promises to make amends with anyone he may have wronged. Jesus gives him salvation. God can wipe your slate clean. He can help you start fresh. God will give you another chance. Today, let the life of Zacchaeus encourage you. Let Jesus’ treatment of this man reassure you how God feels about you, and lead you to change.
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10. (Matthew 21:1-19; Mark 11:1-19; Luke 19:29-48; John 12:12-36) “The Hardhearted” Once again, Jesus is looking over the city of Jerusalem. On this particular day, the skyline of the city is spectacular! As He looks at Jerusalem, He recalls the colorful history of this holy place. His eyes catch a glimpse of God’s Temple as it stands out like a diamond among the other structures. Then, tears begin to flow down his cheeks. He loses control of himself, and starts to wail. This is a hard cry from deep down in His soul. Why is Jesus crying so hard? Is He crying over His future? No… He’s crying over theirs. He knows the tragic fate that awaits the prideful people of Jerusalem. He doesn’t want to see it happen. He doesn’t want the people harmed. But the people refuse to listen to Him, and leave Him little choice. Because of their insistent stubbornness, the people are going to go through the ringer. In 70AD, a Roman army will level the city!! This is the ultimate fate of the stubborn. When you harden your heart, you leave God with little choice but to have to use something horrific to break it. This is not what God wants to do. In fact, it breaks God’s heart to have to do it. But because He loves you, He will do it. Hey!! Are you listening to Jesus?? Will your pride and stubbornness force God’s hand to act? Will God have to use His hammer to humble you? Today, recognize any stubbornness you have, and humble yourself before God. Rid yourself of pride before it’s too late.
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11. (Matthew 21:20-23:39; Mark 11:20-12:44; Luke 20:1-21:4)
The Widow” Jesus and his disciples gather together across the street from the Temple. He wants them to see something. Today, people are giving to the temple treasury. A rich man walks up and places a large amount of money into the collection box. You can hear the coins clanging against the container as he dumps an avalanche of money into it. The disciples are impressed. Then a poor widow approaches. She slowly makes her way to the Temple treasury box. She pulls out of her pocket two small coins. She looks at them for a while. Then she drops them over the edge of the huge container. You can hear the two dime sized coins bounce off the sides of the treasury box like a couple of quarters landing in a basket at a toll booth. This time Jesus is impressed. Why? She gave all the money she had. She gave sacrificially! God is watching your giving. God is not interested in how much you give, but in how much you are willing to sacrifice. Today, revisit your approach to your giving. Decide today that you will give sacrificially.
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12. (Matthew 24:1-25:46; Mark 13:1-37; Luke 21:5-36) “The Thief
Have you ever been burglarized? It’s awful, isn’t it? There’s nothing worse than discovering that you’ve been robbed. You feel so violated and foolish when a thief breaks into your car or house. It makes you afraid… and angry too. Why is a thief so successful? Well, the thief depends on the element of surprise. He is hoping you will forget to lock a door or turn on a light. He’s hoping to catch you asleep and unprepared. Jesus compares His return to the coming of a thief. He says that He will come when most will not expect it. But Jesus doesn’t want His return to blindside you. He wants you to be ready. He wants you to be prepared. Are you ready? What will Jesus find you doing when He returns? Will He find you prepared? Will He find you faithful? Will he meet you like a friend, or surprise you like a thief? That all depends on you. Today, be alert… be faithful… and be ready!
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13. (Luke 22:10) “A Man Carrying A Jar” Jesus knows His days on earth are numbered. The Passover is days away. The disciples ask Him where they will eat the Passover together. The Lord gives them these instructions: As you enter the city, a man carrying a jar of water will meet you. Follow him to the house that he enters. Hmmm… Who is this guy? The man is nameless; He works behind the scenes; He’s a servant; His role may appear to you as minuscule… but it’s not. Everything and everyone mentioned in the Bible is significant. For, though this man is a nameless, he leads through his service. How about you? When called to serve behind the scenes, will you rise (or better yet, stoop down) to the occasion? Do you have to be noticed? Do you have to be recognized? Are there some jobs that are beneath you? Does it matter to you who gets the credit? Today, just be a servant! Be the man/woman who is first to serve. Be excited when you are asked to do something for God. Most of all, be satisfied with being a part of His great plan. Lead others by serving Him.
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14. (Luke 22:31-34) “Simon, Simon” Can you imagine the Lord saying to you that Satan wants to sift you like wheat? How would you feel knowing that Satan is wanting to personally attack you? It’s a little intimidating, isn’t it? This is exactly what Simon Peter is hearing from the lips of his Master. “Satan has called you out!” “He intends to grind you into little pieces.” Yet, Jesus reassures Simon with these words: “I have been praying for you Simon… and when you get through this…and you will…strengthen your brothers.” This had to encourage Simon. What attacks are you going through at this time? How is Satan messing with your faith right now? Look… Jesus has been praying for you too. He is praying that your will not crack under the pressure. He wants you to come through this season of testing with stronger faith and purpose. Today, be encouraged to keep believing, because your Lord and your friends have been praying for God to give you strength. Simon’s faith was seriously tested, and he bounced back stronger. It’s the will of God that the same happen to you too. So hang in there!
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15. (John 15-17) “Disciples” Very few prayers of Jesus are recorded in scripture. Those that are, must have been His best. These prayers may have covered what the disciples believed mattered to Him the most. For example: As the day of the cross is inching closer, Jesus starts giving His disciples some final instructions. He talks about how vital it is for the branches (The Disciples) to be connected to the Vine (God). This drives Him to His knees to pray. He prays for His disciples. He knows they will have a tough road ahead. As Jesus continues to pray, He shifts His focus from the 12 to include all believers who will follow Him in the future. In essence, He is praying for you! And what does Jesus pray for? He prays that you will be ‘one’ with other believers. Jesus is asking His Father to help you be close to other believers. Why?
1- A tough road is ahead of you, and you are going to need lots of help following the Lord.
2- Your relationship with other followers of God is as important as your relationship with God Himself.
3- The world learns what God’s love looks like by watching how you engage with other believers. Will you answer your Lord’s prayer? Will you be connected to other disciples? Today, begin to look for ways to be closely connected to other Christians. Don’t wait for someone else to connect with you; initiate it yourself. Get closer to other disciples!
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16. (Matt 26:36-27:10; Mark 14:32-15:1; Luke 22:40-71; John 18:1-27)
A Servant Girl” He warms himself near a fire just a short distance from Jesus. He watches… He wonders what is going to happen next. All of a sudden, his concentration is broken by a question: “You are one of his disciples, aren’t you?” Fear grips him. “I am not!” Peter replies. But the voice presses the issue again. “Yes, you are one of his disciples. I saw you with him!” Peter’s eyes dart back and forth. “I’ve already told you, I don’t know him!” Who is intimidating Peter? Who is testing his faith? It’s not a Roman guard. It’s not a Jewish official. Who is it? It’s a little girl; a powerless servant girl. It’s surprising what a little peer pressure can reveal about your faith. It can come from anyone and anywhere. Who has been testing your faith lately? Today, expect your faith to be challenged. When it happens, be courageous, and trust the Lord. But in case you cave, get back up and stand strong!
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17. (Matthew 27:2-31; Mark 15:1-22; Luke 23:1-31; John 18:28-19:17)
Pilate” Pilate doesn’t know what to do with Jesus. He doesn’t see anything wrong with Jesus. He doesn’t want to condemn him. The people pressure Pilate to crucify Jesus, but he won’t do anything. He goes back and forth until he washes his hands of the matter, and basically kicks the can down the road. But Pilate doesn’t get off the hook that easily. His indecision leads to handing Jesus over to be crucified. What are you doing with Jesus? What will you do with Jesus? You can’t ride the fence! Your indecision will eventually lead to a choice. What choice should you make concerning Jesus? He demands a response. You must clearly choose one way or another. Today, rededicate your life to Jesus Christ; and make a clear choice to follow Him.
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18. (Matthew 27:32-66; Mark 15:23-47; Luke 23:32-56; John 19:18-42)
Rebels” Jesus hangs on a cross with two rebels. One rebel is on his right. The other rebel is on his left. But there are more than two rebels at Golgotha. Some of the rebels pass by and hurl insults at him. Others mock Him while disguised in their religious garb. There are rebels all around Jesus. And what is Jesus doing? He is saving the rebels around him. Hmmm… Things haven’t changed much, have they? Rebellion is still alive and well on the earth. People are still resisting authority. People are still complaining; protesting when they don’t get their way. People are still fighting. And when you stop and think about it, Jesus is still saving the ‘rebels’ around him. Aren’t you glad He still does? Don’t you have a rebellious streak in you? Will you admit there are times you resist the Master’s call? Do you ever find yourself fighting the will of God? Everyone does. That’s because everyone has a rebellious nature; everyone is a sinner. Yet, Jesus sees something other than rebellion in your heart. While others may have given up on you, (or will give up on you), He sees potential… He sees great promise… He sees in you what you could become if you were free from sin. So He is willing to die to set you free. You see, He’s still saving the rebels around him. Today, be grateful that Jesus was willing to resist His selfish desires to save a rebel like you.
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19. (John 20) “Mary Magdalene” Try to imagine how it must feel to come to a grave of a loved one and find it empty!! Would you be excited? Would you be frightened? Would you be both?? And what do you do with news like this? Who do you tell? Where do you start? Mary is worried… She assumes the body of Jesus has been stolen. She quickly makes her way to Peter, James, and John, and tells them the tragic news! But as she lingers near the tomb, she discovers that it is empty for another reason. It’s not vacant because someone stole the body; it’s empty because of a miracle! Jesus has risen from the dead!! A lot of times, you may find your faith to be weak. It may be difficult to believe some of the accounts in the Bible. You may even feel a little guilt over your doubts. But remember this: The disciples had their moments of doubt too… and God answered them. He will answer yours too! Today, don’t let your doubts discourage you. Linger close to Jesus. Call out for His help. He will help you believe. For, Jesus IS alive, and waits for you to come near.
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20. (Acts 1:1-5, 2:1-47) “They” 3000 people are baptized on the day the church began! That’s amazing. But something else is just as impressive. Luke records that, after their baptism, ‘they’ devoted themselves to the teachings of the apostles; to fellowship with each other; to breaking bread together; and to prayer. ‘They’ give you a great example of what to focus on after your baptism. You see, your baptism is not the end, but the beginning of a lifelong process of change. What are you devoting yourself to today? Would you say you are devoted to learning what the Bible says? Are you devoted to connecting with other believers? Do you have an active prayer life? It’s these things that help you grow and mature into the likeness of Christ. Today, devote yourself to the disciplines that will help you develop the character of Jesus Christ.
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21. (Acts 5:17-42) “Gamaliel” Could you be fighting God? You don’t want to be on the wrong side of the Lord’s work!! The apostles are spreading the Good News about Jesus. Everything seems to be going well. Little do they know, that what they are doing is making waves in their community. Jealousy and opposition begins to mount against the Lord’s work. The apostles are called in to face a governing committee called the Sanhedrin. They are told to stop speaking about Jesus; but the apostles refuse. They can’t help but speak about what they’ve seen and heard. This escalates the situation to the threshold of bloodshed. But a Pharisee named Gamaliel tries to calm everyone down. He strongly urges the Sanhedrin to reconsider what they are about to do. He mentions other movements that have come and gone. These were movements built on human effort. They imploded on their own, so they didn’t last. But Gamaliel thinks this movement could be from God, and opposing these men would be a terrible mistake. For, they would be fighting God Himself!! Today, take a few minutes and ponder what you are doing with the work of God. Are you giving yourself to the work of your church, or do you find yourself resisting and criticizing it? Are you supporting, or suppressing God’s work? Think carefully about how you are approaching what God is trying to do; because you don’t want to be on the wrong side of what God is doing.
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22. (Acts 6:8-8:1) “Stephen” How familiar are you with the story line of the Bible? How well do you know how things progressed between the time of Abraham and Jesus? Stephen is well acquainted with the story of Israel. He can tell others how God has worked with His people for centuries. He knows about Abraham, Joseph, Moses, David, the rest of the Kings, and the prophets in exile. By knowing this story, Stephen’s faith is strong. He is bold!! Why? He sees the bigger picture. He has a deeper sense of purpose. What God is doing, matters the most to him. His confidence in God is secure. Stephen recognizes his part in God’s grand scheme to save mankind. Stephen is able to see when God opens a door… and he goes through them. Because Stephen knew God’s story, he faced his persecution and death with incredible joy; because the story of the past gave him a very good idea of how it will be in the future. It’s very important that you have a good grasp of the history of Israel. Reading a chronological Bible can help you understand it. It will give you greater confidence in what God promises each time you read through it. Today, make a commitment to have a better grasp of what the Bible says. Decide to read the Bible in chronological order… and watch your faith soar!!
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23. (Acts 8:2-9:31) “Simon The Sorcerer” He uses sleight-of-hand to impress his audiences. Simon knows how to pack a crowd. After all, he puts on a pretty good show. But when Philip comes to town, Simon is outclassed by this newcomer. For, Philip is no magician; he is the real deal. Philip brings more than a few impressive miracles; he brings a powerful message. And the enthusiastic people respond. Many will come to Christ! Simon responds too! But the gospel appeals to Simon for a different reason. Yes, the good news is about what Jesus offers mankind from the cross. What a wonderful gift! Right? But the gospel is also about living with greater purpose. It’s spending the rest of your life following the teachings of Jesus. It’s building the character of Christ in your life. Simon wasn’t in it for that. Simon was in it for the excitement… the wonder… the show. There are a lot of folks following Jesus for the show. As long as they are entertained; as long as following Christ is fun… they’re in! As long as no one hurts their feelings, they have no trouble being involved in their church and small group. But as soon as someone rocks their boat; as soon as their values are challenged; when they are called to sacrifice; or they face a little difficulty… they are out! Why? To them, this is not what Christianity is about. Like Simon, it’s about what they can get. They have not grown to the level of maturity that sees past what they are consuming, and looks for opportunities to contribute. How about you? Are you in it? If so, why are you in it? Are you seeking to know Him and what He wants you to do? Or are you prone to ‘bail’ when you see the first sign of sacrifice?
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24. (Acts 10) “Cornelius” Here is an example of an open heart. Cornelius is a guard in the roughest and toughest army in the world. But he has a heart of gold. He is generous to others. He sincerely prays and worships God. Though he does all these things, Cornelius is not saved. God rewards Cornelius’ open heart with salvation. God knows who is ready to hear the gospel long before anyone else, (e.g., The Ethiopian Eunuch, Saul, Lydia). And when He sees their humility, He sends someone into their lives to tell them the Good News. If you look closely, you may recognize people like Cornelius near you. These are people who have an open and teachable spirit. They are helping others. They may start attending church for some particular reason. Yet they do not know the Lord. God puts you, (just like Peter), into their lives for a reason. Remember this the next time you cross paths with a ‘Cornelius’ type person. Let God use you to bridge the gap between them and heaven.
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25. (Acts 13:1-15:35) “Paul and Barnabas” They are better together. The kingdom grows from their alliance. The combination of Paul’s and Barnabas’ strengths and weaknesses made them a good team. Together, they established new churches and strengthen existing churches. Together, they were able to sustain their faith when facing difficulty. It’s good to partner up with other disciples. You are stronger with other believers at your side. So….who are you partnering with? Who would you say is your Barnabas? Remember, two are better than one (Ecc. 4). Today, link up with another believer. Strive for deeper fellowship with other disciples. You will be stronger and more effective when you do.
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26. (Galatians 1:1-6:18) “The Galatians” They initially obey the gospel with enthusiasm. After all, they have a relationship with God. They are excited to be free from sin. But, over time, the Galatians get caught up in the rules. ‘Following the rules’ becomes more important than their relationship with God. Their love for God has been reduced to a love for law. The apostle Paul is worried. Why? They are enslaved again. Look, you can obey all the rules, and miss the Lord. If you are not careful, your passionate beginning as a Christian can evolve into nothing more than going through the motions of keeping a few rules. Your purpose gets lost. Your mission gets lost. You start to depend on your track record more than on the Lord. This will make you smug with self-righteousness, and miserable! Always remember: It was what Jesus did that saved you; not what you do. What you do now is simply a response to what He did for you. Today, ask yourself if you are following Christ, or simply going through the motions. Focus on pleasing Him. Let your actions, (what you do), be an expression of your gratitude toward God.
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27. (Acts 15:36-41) “Mark” It doesn’t matter who you are… everyone blows it. Nobody bats 1000 all the time. When was the last time you spiritually struck out? When the apostle Paul needed Mark the most, he wasn’t there for him. So Paul doesn’t want to take him along. This is not the first time John Mark ran out on someone (Mark 14:15). But Barnabas still believes in Mark. Barnabas believes so strongly in Mark that he has a falling out with the apostle Paul, and they part ways. John Mark eventually dealt with his fears, and became useful to the apostle Paul (2 Tim 4:11). If you have blown it lately; if you have disappointed someone because you lacked the courage… Take heart! For, God can and will help you overcome. Today, be encouraged by the grace of God, and keep moving forward. If you know a John Mark, be a Barnabas… and encourage them to do the same.
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28. (1 Thessalonians 5) “Children Of The Day” It’s been a few weeks since Daylight Saving Time ended. Have you adjusted to it yet? Studies say that it can take up to ten weeks for people to adjust to ‘falling back one hour’. Think about it… Right now, most folks wake up in the dark, and return to home from work – you guessed it – in the dark! There’s something strange about living in too much darkness. It can make you moody and frumpy. The Bible compares living in sin with living in darkness. For, you can’t see very well in the dark. You lose your way without some light. You are more likely to bump into things and get hurt. It’s dangerous living in darkness!! That’s why the Apostle Paul encourages you to live like a child of the day. What does this mean? It means, to choose to live with GOD’S light on in your life! It means, to think and conduct yourself radically different than you did when you lived in sin (darkness). It means you can look forward to the future, because you can see much further down life’s road. It means you can live confidently, because you can avoid the ‘pot holes’ of life. Most of all, the light leads you home! Praise God! Today, be excited about living in God’s light! Be a light for others. Let your life encourage those in the dark to come into God’s wonderful light.
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29. (2 Thessalonians 3) “The Idle” It’s not that they cannot work; it’s that they won’t do the right kind of work. For, the Apostle Paul points out that ‘the idle’ are busy. But they are busy being busybodies. They are always finding ways to stir the pot and polarize people. The idle work hard at getting out of working. Hmmm… It sounds silly doesn’t it? But it’s true. You’ve seen it happen. When there’s work to do, you will find the idle giving you all kinds of reasons why they can’t contribute. God takes idleness seriously. He thinks that the idle do not have the right to eat! Look… God wants you to be active! He doesn’t want you wasting time by sitting on your hands. He wants you to work hard. For, hard work can be very rewarding, and it honors God. In fact, everyone admires and respects a hard worker. Don’t you? Today, don’t make excuses. Be ambitious, and work hard! Honor God and your employer by being diligent and dependable. Earn your keep; earn your wage… and experience a sense of satisfaction and accomplishment from working hard.
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30. (1 Corinthians 1-4) “Co-Workers” It’s amazing how much you can accomplish with a little help from others. The apostle Paul reminds the church in Corinth that they are not to be divided or independent of one another. God brought them together to work as a team. He reminds them to appreciate one another’s help. Whether they like it or not, they need each other. Life in God’s Kingdom hasn’t changed. You still need other believers to help you grow. You still need the help of co-workers to accomplish what God wants. Who are your co-workers in God’s Kingdom? Who needs your help to move the Kingdom of God forward? Today, appreciate the co-workers God has placed in your life. While you are at it, lend a hand, and help other believers grow and mature.
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DailyPeople – December   |   Tim Gill

1. (1 Corinthians 7) “The Married” Marriage has been around since the beginning of mankind. Marriage is one of the most powerful relationships on earth. It originated in the heart of God and is ordained by God! So, why are so many ‘Christian’ couples doing so little in the Kingdom? Why do so many singles serve God so well, until they are married… and drop off the radar? Well, it’s not that marriage is bad. Marriage is designed to be good. The problem may have to do with many singles entering marriage carelessly. They marry based on factors that have little to do with the Lord and His kingdom. It’s more about the pursuit of happiness than holiness. Once married, their lives get busier with the unique challenges and responsibilities that go with marriage, and they struggle making the adjustment. Their relationship with each other soon rivals their relationship with God and ministry. Thus, The Lord loses two more workers in His Kingdom! Paul tries to address this rivalry. He knows how marriage can divide the heart of a disciple. So He challenges the married to recognize the powerful impact marriage has on their discipleship. It’s your discipleship that will determine if your marriage will impede or enhance your impact to spread God’s message to others. If you are single, approach marriage as a privilege and not a right. Consider carefully how marriage will impact your ability to serve the Lord. Make sure you marry someone who will not put out or dim your light, but help your light shine. If you are already married, what adjustments could you make to ensure that your hearts will not be divided, so you both can continue to passionately serve the Lord? Today, make a commitment to always honor God in your marriage.
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2. (1 Corinthians 11:17-14:40) “Kids and Grown-Ups” Every healthy family has them: Kids and Grown-Ups. No family can survive without them. God’s family is made-up of the same. There are those who are immature—Christians who are looking for what they can get. They may be new at following Christ, or they may be stuck in immaturity for years. The immature are caught up in the petty things of life. Then there are the mature—those who have learned to follow Christ with less and less supervision. They tackle the moments that challenge their faith… and grow. They are focused on what they can give. They have no time for petty or childish issues. As you read today’s passages, notice where the apostle Paul is challenging the church in Corinth to grow up. Ask yourself, as you read today’s passage, “Am I maturing in Christ?” If so, where? What will I do to grow into a mature Christian? God has designed you for maturity. He doesn’t want you to stay the same. His Kingdom – and your church – needs all the grown-ups it can get! Today, start doing the things that will help you mature.
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3. (Acts 19:23-20:1) “Gaius and Aristarchus” Paul and his companions are in the great city of Ephesus. Over a third of a million people live there, and Paul and his aides were bringing large numbers of people to the Lord. But things hit a snag. Not everyone loves their message. Some strongly oppose it. They grab Gaius and Aristarchus and intend to hurt them. Why? They are being hit in the pocketbook!! In the confusion of the riot, an interesting comment is made. A leader in the city calms the crowd down, and makes this observation about the character of Paul and his companions: “You have brought these men here, though they have neither robbed temples nor blasphemed our goddess.” Hmmm… The message that has brought so much disturbance hasn’t come from the messengers. The message is controversial all by itself. For, Paul and his friends have a reputation for preaching their message with integrity. They are considerate of opposing views, and teach with humility and respect for others. How about you? What are people hearing from your lips? Is there a critical and judgmental flavor in your message? Or do people sense a tone of humility in your words. It’s amazing how effective you can be by simply being nice. Today, make sure the good news you share with others is good news. Let God’s message stir the hearts of others by being plain and humble. Try to talk about people and spiritual matters without tearing them down. For this will not help the good news be good.
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4. (2 Corinthians 2) “The Aroma Of Christ” Aromas conjure up memories. Whether it’s the light scent of perfume, or the pungent odor of a pig farm, aromas remind us of both the good and the bad. The Bible compares your life with God to an aroma. The way you live for Christ will either attract or repel others. For some, your love and dedication to God will bring something positive, and give great encouragement. To others, your love for God will turn their stomach, and turn them off! So, what do you do? All that matters is that you ‘smell’ like Jesus. Regardless of how people will respond to your example, make sure it’s a good one—a godly one. Today, and the rest of the week, be as much like Christ as you can. Let others see your love for God. Remind others, through your words and deeds, that God must be honored.
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5. (2 Corinthians 10:1-13:14) “Super Apostles” They boast about themselves every chance they get. They brag about their ministry for self-promotion. They give the impression that they are all about God; but they are really about what makes them look good. This is in sharp contrast of the Apostle Paul. Instead of bragging about his accomplishments, he boasts about his weaknesses. He is quick to admit he isn’t eloquent or a gifted speaker. He would rather go hungry than ask for financial support. The Apostle Paul may not seem all that impressive, but he is a great example of the kind of servants you should respect in God’s Kingdom. Can you think of servants like the Apostle Paul in your church? If you can, pray for them to keep serving with humility. Honor those who work hard among you. Appreciate their sacrifice to help you become more and more like Christ.
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6. (Romans 1:1-3:20) “The Preacher” Hmmm… When you think of the preacher, you immediately think of a person who spends hours in preparation to speak in a pulpit. But as you read the first few chapters in Romans you get a broader idea of who a preacher is. You get the idea that every Christian is a ‘preacher’! So guess what? That’s right! You are a preacher too! You get into your pulpit and preach a sermon every day. You give a message to everyone around you. So I gotta ask… Will it be a good sermon? How much preparation will you be giving to your lesson today? Will you believe what you preach, enough to apply your own words? Or will your walk be different than your talk? Today, don’t adjust your message to fit your lifestyle; do the opposite—practice what you preach! Be as consistent as you can with the Good News of Jesus Christ. Let people see your sermon in action!
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7. (Romans 3:21-8:39) “Conqueror” Do you realize that you have won? Christ gives you victory! With Christ, sin no longer can have power over you. With Christ, all the things that happen, or will happen, to you now work together for your ultimate good. With Christ, you are more than a conqueror! With Jesus as your ally, you not only win over your sin, you can reign victoriously over your sin! It can no longer have control over you. For, God loves you very much, and will help you with everything. Today, live with a great sense of hope. Expect God to give you the strength to conquer sin. Let God’s unfailing love fill you with courage and confidence. For, nothing can defeat you!
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8. (Romans 9:1-11:36) “Branches” You may have a difficult time fully understanding this, but for generations, Gentiles were not a part of God’s kingdom. For, God had chosen a nation of people through one man—Abraham, who would be the beginning of the Jews. They were exclusively His people for a very long time. God would plan a day when the Gentiles would also finally be in His family. It would be thousands of years before someone like you could be fortunate enough to be in the kingdom of God. This is what Paul is trying to say in today’s passage. He wants the Roman Christians to understand that God took them like a branch, and grafted them into His chosen people. It is only by God’s mercy that He did this. Aren’t you glad? You should be! He made room for you by cutting off the people who refused to obey him. God hopes you will appreciate what He’s done. He also hopes you understand, that if you refuse His reign in your life, He will cut you off too. This may sound harsh, but it’s not. God does this out of love. Today, appreciate the mercy that God has extended to you by including you into His family. Never take this for granted. Appreciate His redemption by worshiping and serving Him.
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9. (Romans 12:1-16:27) “Phoebe” As Paul closes his letter to the church in Rome, he lists several names. Phoebe starts the list. There really isn’t much info on her, or most of the others listed; yet, Paul places her on top of his list. You see, Phoebe is known for one thing. She is known for her help. And when Paul reminisces about all of the people who have helped him in ministry, he thinks of Phoebe. Who do you think of? When it comes to all the people who have helped you along the way, who comes to mind? Today, appreciate all the people God has placed in your life. Remember to thank God for giving you the redemptive relationships you have. It’s their help that makes you better!
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10. (Acts 21) “Agabus” He walks over… He takes the Apostle Paul’s belt, and ties himself up with it. Then he says, “The owner of this belt will be bound and arrested!” Agabus reminds you that being a Christian isn’t always easy. There’s always someone who will have a problem with your faith in God. That’s because you make them uncomfortable. Your faith reminds them of their flaws and foolishness. So they give you a few digs and insults. They pounce on your inconsistency as if it were hypocrisy. They may even threaten you. What will you do when you face such opposition? You continue to trust The Lord! This is what prepared the Apostle Paul. He believed that when God brought him to it, God would help him through it. Why? God told Paul he would suffer from the very beginning (Acts 9). So whatever happened to him was no surprise. He knew it was normal (2 Tim 3:12). Most of all, he knew that if he met his difficulties with faith, someone could be reached (Phil 1:12). Today, don’t be afraid! Be bold! Try to share your faith with someone through an invitation to church, a scripture, giving credit to God, or simply telling them how Jesus has blessed you. And if you get a strange look or a frumpy response, shake it off, and praise your God for the opportunity to talk about how awesome He is.
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11. (Acts 21:17-23:35) “The Apostle Paul” You never know when an opportunity to share your faith may occur. Sometimes, it’s as easy as falling off a log. At other times, a door will open while in a tough spot. The Apostle Paul isn’t in town a week, before he gets into serious trouble. A crowd gathers and try’s to kill him. The only thing that saves his life, is that he gets arrested. Talk about a bad day!! While most folks would be licking their wounds and hanging their head, the Apostle Paul recognizes a great opportunity to talk about what Jesus has done for him. He is still focused on his mission. Hmmm… Didn’t the Apostle Paul hear about Jesus from a disciple named Stephen when he was about to be stoned? Lucky for Paul that Stephen kept his head. You never know who may be listening to you while in a lousy situation. When trouble comes your way, will you be caught up with worry and self-pity, or will you focus on your mission? Today, stay focused on the mission God has given you. Who knows? How you handle your tough situations could turn into a triumph for someone else.
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12. (Acts 24) “Felix” He has been a part of the system for a long time. As judge, Felix hears the Apostle Paul’s case, then abruptly adjourns the court. Later, he calls for Paul to meet with him privately. He’s hoping for a bribe, but gets a bible lesson instead! Felix is curious about Paul and his message. He asks his wife to join him to listen to Paul. Paul’s presentation starts to make the couple nervous. In fear, Felix sends Paul back to his prison cell. When Felix finds a more convenient time, he plans to call Paul back. But another opportunity to hear what Paul has on his mind never comes. Felix is replaced by another governor, and never heard from again. Felix offers a serious warning. Never put off until tomorrow, what you can do today; because there is no guarantee that you will have tomorrow! So… What are you dragging your feet about? What is God calling you to do right now? Whatever it is… DON’T PUT IT OFF!! Be urgent about the will of God. You may never get another chance to do what God wants. All you have is today. So seize the day… and obey!
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13. (Acts 27-28) “Julius, Aristarchus, and 274 more passengers
When things are at their worst, the people see your best! Everyone else seems to be in a panic; but the Apostle Paul experiences a hurricane, a shipwreck, and a snake bite without melting down. He is able to keep his cool. How is he able to do this? That’s easy. He believes God is going to take care of him. He places his future in God’s hands, so he doesn’t worry about the outcome. Paul believes that no matter what, the outcome will be good (Romans 8:28). When you can trust God with your future, you’re able to focus on your mission! Today, give your worries and cares to God. Do it right now! Live the rest of your day in peace, and focus on your mission. Let others see the best come out of you.
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14. (Colossians 1:1-4:18; Philemon 1-25) “My Family” 2000 years ago, the Apostle Paul challenged the families of the church in Colossae to treat each other with the love of Christ. Wives are to yield their way to their husbands like they would for Jesus. Husbands are to be tender with their wives like Christ is with them. Children are to obey their parents as they would The Lord. Dads are not to be tyrants with their kids, but like Jesus clearly demonstrated, love them in a way that brings out their best. Hmmm… Families haven’t changed much, have they? Families all over the world struggle to treat one another properly. Spouses fight each other for control. Children are constantly testing the boundaries of authority. Parents and children are easily polarized by a lack of understanding and respect. These instructions are as relevant today as they were 2000 years ago! Families could avoid a lot of trouble if they would simply apply them. As you read today’s passage, look at how you are treating your family. Make a commitment today to treat them like the Lord has been treating you.
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15. (Ephesians 5) “Children Of Light” Have you ever heard of the phrase: “As different as night and day”? Darkness and light are complete opposites; neither can be in the presence of the other. Darkness conceals but light reveals. This is the contrast between living your life in the world, and living your life in Christ. Living as a child of the light totally goes against the values and conduct of the world. Living as a child of light is about pleasing God in every way. Your words are better… your conduct is better… your outlook is better too. You also become a beacon of light for others. The thing is, you decide how much light you will have. Like a dimmer switch, you control how much of God’s light, (His influence and character), will be in your life. So… how bright is it in your life? How bright will it be today? Today, flip the switch ON! Be a light in the darkness around you. Show others the character of Jesus. Light a path that will lead others to Heaven.
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16. (Philippians 2:19-24) “Timothy” There is a long list of men the Apostle Paul mentored; but none of them was as favored as Timothy. You see Timothy mentioned in the book of Acts, as well as some of Paul’s letters. He also wrote two letters to Timothy. What stands out about this young man is summed up in a couple of sentences: “I have no one else like him, who will show genuine concern for your welfare. 21 For everyone looks out for their own interests, not those of Jesus Christ.” Take a close look at Timothy, and you discover that he is zeroed in on one thing—the interests of Jesus Christ. If you haven’t noticed, the world can be pretty preoccupied with itself. Careers, cars, and kids can crowd out the Kingdom of God for a lot of people. This may not seem like a big deal, but your priorities not only shape your life on earth, but your values determine what you will have in eternity. Where will your interests be today? Will the values of God’s Kingdom be in what you do today? Today, find a way to apply your desire to please God into your workplace, campus, and home. Look out for the interests of Jesus.
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17. (1 Timothy 5) “Widows” The life of a widow in ancient times wasn’t easy. Widows who had no children stood a good chance of losing their property and becoming destitute. It was not uncommon to see widows begging for help in the streets. The Apostle Paul gives Timothy prudent guidelines as he helps the needy he encounters. What are you doing for the needy you notice? Are you sharing with others who need help? It’s easy to be critical and cold to those in need. Today, fight your urge to criticize, and offer a caring touch to the needy. Allow God to use you to help another human being who could use a break.
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18. (Titus 3) “Overseer” His job is to shepherd God’s people. He is to protect the church. He must be well acquainted with God’s Word so he can teach sound doctrine and refute false teaching. He is to be a model of morality and faith for the disciples under his care. The way he leads his household is a great indication of how he will lead God’s people. You can’t afford to overlook such qualities of an overseer in God’s Kingdom. You want to make sure that men, like those Paul describes to Titus, are shepherding God’s flock. They don’t have to be flawless, but they must be faithful! Treat leaders like this with honor and respect. But most of all, pray for them to be men who will be as much like Jesus as they possible can. For, these are the kind of men who best oversee God’s people.
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19. (2 Timothy 1-5) “Ancestors” The Apostle Paul remembers the spiritual legacy of his ancestors; he reminds Timothy of his to encourage him to be faithful to God. Ancestors… Everyone has them. It’s through descendants that family traits and traditions make their way through the centuries and touch the present. This is also true with spiritual values, as faith in Christ is handed off to the next generation. Can you think of some ancestors that loved the Lord? You owe a lot to those who have served God before you. There was a time when they took hold of ‘the torch’ of service, and now, it’s your turn. They touched the future by being faithful in the past. It’s their faith that paved the way for you! Like Timothy, the faith you have in Christ, which once lived in them, now lives in you. One day, you will pass this torch. Your legacy of faith in God will be remembered by your children and their children… but only if you nurture your faith and keep it growing like they did. Today, maintain your faith in Jesus Christ. Feed it with the word. Exercise it with application. Strengthen it through service. When you do these things, you will pass a flaming torch of faith that will lead the next generation to trust the Lord.
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20. (James 2:12-13, 3:17, 4:6-12) “The Merciful” To have the favor of God is to have something very, very special—it’s to have His mercy. When you stop and think about it, God has been very merciful to you. You mean everything to Him. He gives you what you need, over what you deserve. And when the day comes when you stand before God, He will judge you based on mercy. You will be judged, not entirely based on His mercy, but also on how merciful you’ve been to others. That’s why James challenges you to shape your dialogue and deeds by the mercy that God now extends to you. Do you consider yourself to be a merciful person? When you talk about others, does mercy influence what comes out of your mouth? How do you think God talks about you behind your back? Based on His grace, how do you think God treats you as a sinner? Are you treating people with the same kind of mercy God extends to you? Does God’s mercy humble you? Today, realize the depth of God’s great love for you. Let His mercy have a huge impact on how you treat others. Today, be merciful.
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21. (1 Peter) “Slaves” How are things going at work? The workplace can be a brutal place for a follower of Christ. Gossip, backbiting, and jealousy can make you want to toss in the towel and join in the ‘drama’. But God has another view of the workplace. Instead of work being a ‘grind’ for you, He wants it to be a place of grace for Him. So He is counting on you to endure and ‘go high’, when everyone else is going ‘low’. Do you think you can do this today? For, when you keep your cool, and live wisely in the workplace, doors will open for you to grow. You end up pleasing your ‘real Master’, and you get an opportunity to help others see Jesus.
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22. (2 Peter 1:5-11) “The Nearsighted” Being nearsighted is to be shortsighted. This is the inability to see things clearly at a distance. For example: Up close, everything looks clear, but at a distance, everything starts to get blurry. This is true in life. A lot of people can’t see things past themselves. They lose sight of the bigger picture of God’s plan. This leads to frustration and discouragement. By losing their spiritual perspective, believers fail to see clearly how God works everything together for good. They can’t relax. It’s difficult to trust God, or hope for a secure future. So what do you do? Peter says, “Keep your faith fresh.” Set your faith up to grow. When your faith grows, you will clearly see your role in God’s grand plan. Your life will become effective and productive; you will never fall, because your path is clear to see. Today, take more responsibility for your faith. Don’t settle with just knowing information. Be more and more about transformation. Become as much like Christ as you can… and experience a farsighted faith that will bless your life.
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23. (Hebrews 1:1-6:12) “The Priest” A man stands next to a lamb with a knife in his hand. He looks up and calls on the mercy of God, then cuts the lamb’s throat. He can feel the life slowly leave the innocent animal. A sense of sadness and gladness come over the people. Why? A sacrifice has been made. Sin is atoned for another day. The Priest does this on behalf of the people every day… all day long. This goes on for centuries until another High Priest appears. There has never been, and will never be, anyone like this Priest. Because this time, He brings no lamb! Yet, He has a suitable sacrifice. He plans to sacrifice Himself. By doing this, He builds a bridge and provides a way for Man to be with his God. He makes atonement for sin once and for all. Sadness and gladness once again are felt in the hearts of people. Jesus Christ is your High Priest! He comes before God, and offers Himself on your behalf. No one else can do this for you. Praise God He did! Today, appreciate the High Priest who made a way for you to be with God.
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24. (Hebrews 6-10) “Melchizedek” He is called the high priest of Salem. This means he is a priest of peace. He has no family heritage. There is no record of his death. Melchizedek is a special priest appointed by God. So when Abraham meets him, he does something no man ever did for another. He gave him a tenth of what he had. Abraham saw him as more than a mere man. For, Melchizedek represented God himself! The Hebrew writer believes Jesus is much like Melchizedek. Jesus also is a priest that opens the way to God. His lineage extends into Heaven. Though there is a record of his death, He arose from the dead… and still lives! No one else has done this. But Jesus is much more than Melchizedek, the High Priest of Salem. He is the High Priest of Heaven. For, Jesus enters the holiest of places, and opens a new way to Heaven by sacrificing Himself, over another lamb. He now serves before His Father on your behalf. He is your daily sacrifice that makes it possible to approach God at all. Praise God!! Today, on Christmas Eve, let the Prince and Priest of Peace fill your heart with humble gratitude and incredible joy.
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25. (Hebrews 11-12) “Witnesses” You are being watched! A great cloud of witnesses watch what you will do next. They have given you great examples of what it means to live by your faith in God. So they are pulling for you to do the right thing. They are cheering you on to put your faith into action. These witnesses include great men and women of faith. There is Abel, Abraham, Joseph, Moses, and David. They are men and women who have done some amazing things based on their faith. They have gone through the ringer too, and passed the testing of their faith. And so, you now stand in the arena of life, as they watch from heaven and history. It’s your turn. What do you do? You throw off the sin and anything else that would hinder you from running the race marked out for you. You keep your focus on Christ so you can finish strong. Today, think of the people who have passed on before you and have passed on the torch of faith to you. They are counting on you to carry THE FAITH to the next generation. Look for the things that could keep you from finishing your mission, and get rid of them. Above all, keep moving forward and don’t quit! For, God will reward your faithfulness someday.
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26. (3 John) “Diotrephes” Who is this guy? Diotrephes is a guy with an ego. He makes everything about what he is doing, instead of what God is doing. He’s preoccupied with being noticed and appreciated. When there is a job to do, he must be in charge. He demands that things be done his way. Why? Diotrephes has a deep desire to be ‘first’. His love for self is hurting the church. How about you? Under a thin veneer of humility, is there a deep desire to be first? Do you have to be noticed? Do you have to be the center of attention? Are you quick to be jealous over someone else getting a little credit? There is no place in God’s Kingdom for selfishness!! Today, remember what Jesus said: “The first will be last and the last will be first.” So humble out… Yield your way to others. Be a servant. Become a disciple who loves to see others honored.
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27. (Revelation 1:1-3:22) “Church Member” What kind of church member are you? What kind of church member will you be today? The Book Of Revelation describes several kinds of members of God’s church. These ‘church members’ range from having radical faith to being complacent and lukewarm. You may want to read today’s passage to get a good picture of the various kinds of Christians in the 7 churches. Notice how some of them water down what God says, while some fall away because they simply lose the passion they once had. Then there is the church in Smyrna. The people in this little church appear to be insignificant and ineffective. They are viewed as a poor church. What can they offer? But God says they are very rich! Why? They have kept their focus on the Lord while living in a broken world. They are faithful in affliction. They keep working, and simply refuse to quit! And it is not over… This little church is going to go through more setbacks, persecution, and hardship. Some will even die! But Jesus encourages this church, and encourages you, to hang in there… because it will be worth it! God will reward your perseverance. As this year draws to a close, and a new year is about to begin, rededicate your life to God once more. Be determined to be the best member of His church you can possibly be. Make a commitment to persevere through what lies ahead, knowing that the Lord will bless your faithfulness.
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28. (Revelation 4:1-8:6) “Twenty Four Elders” John is having a vision from God. Now, a vision is an eye popping dream that is loaded with deeper spiritual meaning. When you read one of the accounts of John’s visions, you must ask yourself two questions: What do I see? And what does it mean? John sees twenty four men standing before the throne of God. All twenty four elders are wearing a crown. What does this mean? This means they carry some authority; they carry more authority than most. All of a sudden, the twenty four rulers take off their crowns and begin to bow. There’s a sound of crowns hitting the floor as these ‘kings’ worship ‘Him who sits on the Throne of God’! What does this mean? It means that God is sovereign. He possesses all power and dominion. You do not!! It means that surrender is the proper way to approach God. For though you possess some power, your power is nothing compared to God’s awesome power. The only way to come to God is to give up your crown, and place it at the foot of God’s throne. Anything else will not do. Today, make sure you check your crown at the door. Live today with a sense of surrender in all you say and do. Seek to please your King!!
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29. (Revelation 12-13) “The Dragon” It’s an intense sight! John sees a woman about to give birth to a child. His eye catches a dragon waiting to pounce on the newborn. A terrible war breaks out in Heaven! In the nick of time the woman escapes with her child. Dejected and defeated, the dragon turns his destructive plan on the rest of God’s people. Who is this dragon? It’s Satan! Though not as powerful as he once was, Satan still attacks God’s people. He will attack you! You probably can recall some moments when you knew he was attacking. He used a critic… a catastrophe… an illness… a friend. Satan fights dirty; and he’ll use anything and everything he can to do you in! But don’t be afraid of him. Your God threw him out of Heaven, and He can throw him out of your way. Today, “Resist the Devil and he will flee from you.” James 4:7. “Take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.” Ephesians 6:16.
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30. (Revelation 14:1-19:5) “Babylon” Who is this nation in John’s dream? Who is this beast called Babylon? It is Rome. The Roman Empire has had its way over the world for a long time. Rome has beaten down just about every nation on earth. The Roman Empire has had its way over God’s people too. Thousands of Christians will die from the bloody arm of Nero. Emperor Domitian will set into motion a persecution of God’s people that will last for nearly three centuries. But God gives a clear message to John and to every Christian that is about to go through the ringer. He tells them to persevere. For Rome will one day fall, and God’s people will still be standing. You live in a marvelous time. Yes, you may encounter, every once in a while, light persecution in the form of rejection or ridicule; but this isn’t as intense as what your spiritual ancestors went through with Rome. Your nation is not hunting you down to execute you because you are a Christian. That may one day change, but right now, you have it made! You live in a marvelous time!! The thing to remember is this: Whatever persecution you encounter, God will see to it that you and all of His people will still be standing in the end. So stay faithful. Don’t let your setbacks discourage you. Persevere through your trials. For, they will someday end… and you, my friend, will still be standing.
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31. (Revelation 19:6-22:21) “Faithful and True” He rides on a white horse in victory. His name is Faithful and True. Who is this? It’s Jesus! He is Faithful—you can count on him. He will never leave you, and all His promises are good. He is True—there is no falsehood in Him. Every word you’ve read this year, from His lips, is absolutely true. God will not lie to you. The rider of the white horse brings restoration. For, He has restored things, between you and God, as they were when Adam walked with God on the earth. As you close this year, and your Bible, be encouraged that Jesus Christ reigns victorious over your enemies. On January 1st, open the New Year by opening your Daily Bible once again. Start from the beginning and, each day, read God’s message… to YOU.
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Daily Questions

DailyQuestions – January   |   Tim Gill

1. (Genesis 1-3) “The Power Of Words” Today’s DQ’s: How powerful are God’s words in your life? What is one lie Satan is telling you?
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DailyQuestions – Febuary   |   Tim Gill

DailyQuestions – March   |   Tim Gill

DailyQuestions – April   |   Tim Gill

DailyQuestions – May   |   Tim Gill

DailyQuestions – June   |   Tim Gill

DailyQuestions – July   |   Tim Gill