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2020 Archived Blogs
1st Quarter Blogs
Week of 12/30 - 1/3 (B1;20)
Numbers 6:24-26 (NKJV)
The LORD bless you and keep you; The LORD make His face shine upon you, and be gracious to you; The LORD lift up His countenance upon you, and give you peace.
We offer the following three prayers in response ...
1. LORD, bring those who yet need You into new- birth relationship with You through Your beloved Son, Jesus Christ - Lord of lords and King of kings. Please do so whereby they, too, can so enjoy the huge blessings found only in the Lord Jesus as Your New Covenant graciously continues. May peace with God be their eternal discovery this new year. Amen
2. LORD, bless and keep those in You who, by grace, con- tinue in relationship with You in their new-born state. May Your holy face shine upon them and be gracious to them. Lift up Your countenance upon them, precious Father. And, dear YHVH God Most High: THANK YOU for Your holy New Covenant through Jesus Christ Your Son. May the peace of God which passes all understanding be our ongoing blessing through 2020. Amen
3. LORD, soften the hearts of those who claim to be in You but who are not abiding in Your Son. Open their eyes to the dangers of the life they are presently living. Help the carnal to repent of their ways, turn and walk in Your Holy Spirit. May You grace them with change whereby they, too, can enjoy the sweet abundant life Your Son, our Shepherd, so kindly offers. May Your merciful, gracious light reign over the darkness. In Jesus Christ's glorious name we pray, amen.
Week of 1/6-10 (B2;20)
Psalm 1 (NKJV)
Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor stands in the path of sinners, nor sits in the seat of the scornful; but his delight is in the law of the LORD, and in His law he meditates day and night. He shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that brings forth its fruit in its season, whose leaf also shall not wither; and whatever he does shall prosper. The ungodly are not so, but are like the chaff which the wind drives away. Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous. For the LORD knows the way of the righteous, but the way of the ungodly shall perish.
Father, in a day filled with dark uncertainty, may we be wise enough to heed the blessings of this psalm. May we enjoy Your peace which passes all understanding even though the events of Mt. 24:4-8 continue to manifest themselves. LORD, we praise You for the heavenly blessings in Christ Jesus Your glorious Son. Thank You for Your peace which does indeed transcend all understanding. We magnify You oh eternal YHVH God. In Jesus Christ's - Your Son's - holy name we pray, amen.
Week of 1/13-17 (B3;20)
Psalm 2 (NKJV)
Why do the nations rage, and the people plot a vain thing? The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the LORD and against His Anointed, saying, "Let us break Their bonds in pieces and cast away Their cords from us." He who sites in the heavens shall laugh; the LORD shall hold them in derision. Then He shall speak to them in His wrath, and distress them in His deep displeasure: "Yet I have set My King on My holy hill of Zion. I will declare the decree: The LORD has said to Me, 'You are My Son, today I have begotton You. Ask of Me, and I will give You the nations for Your inheritance, and the ends of the earth for Your possession. You shall break them with a rod of iron; You shall dash them to pieces like a potter's vessel.'" Now therefore, be wise O kings; be instructed, you judges of the earth. Serve the LORD with fear, and rejoice with trembling. Kiss the Son, lest He be angry, and you perish in the way, when His wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed are all those who put their trust in Him.
Father God, we ADORE Thee. In Jesus Christ's holy name, LORD, help us to revere Your glorious Son. During these days of rebellion, help us LORD to stay the course and remain faithful to You. Help us endure during these days of global warfare against You and Your peoples - both Your Old Covenant people and Your New Covenant people in Jesus Christ Your Son. Thank You, Father God. In Christ alone we bring appeal: Come soon Lord Jesus!
Week of 1/20-24 (B4;20)
I Peter 3:8-17 (NKJV)
Finally, all of you be of one mind, having compassion for one another; love as brothers, be tenderhearted, be courteous; not returning evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary blessing, knowing that you were called to this, that you may inherit a blessing. For "He who would love life and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips from speaking deceit. Let him turn away from evil and do good; let him seek peace and pursue it. For the eyes of the LORD are on the righteous, and His ears are open to their prayers; but the face of the LORD is against those who do evil. And who is he who will harm you if you become followers of what is good? But even if you should suffer for righteousness' sake, you are blessed. "And do not be afraid of their threats, nor be troubled." But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks a reason of the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear; having a good conscience, that when they defame you as evildoers, those who revile your good conduct in Christ may be ashamed. For it is better, if it is the will of God, to suffer for doing good than for doing evil.
Father YHVH God, thank You for graciously providing the resources to walk in the perspective You've kindly outlined Your people to obey as we abide in Your Son. Yes LORD, thank You for your empowering Spirit. Help us to walk in Him as Your Ambassadors of Christ Jesus. May we, in Your abundant mercy and grace, continue being those lights which exalt and magnify Your great name. In Jesus Christ's name we pray, amen.
Week of 1/27-31 (B5;20)
II Peter 2:1-11 (NKJV)
But there were also false prophets among the people, even as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Lord who bought them, and bring on themselves swift destruction. And many will follow their destructive ways, because of whom the way of truth will be blasphemed. By covetousness they will exploit you with deceptive words; for a long time their judgment has not been idle, and their destruction does not slumber. For if God did not spare the angels who sinned, but cast them into chains of darkness, to be reserved for judgment; and did not spare the ancient world, but saved Noah, one of eight people, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood on the world of the ungodly; and turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah into ashes, condemned them to destruction, making them an example to those who afterward would live ungodly; and delivered righteous Lot, who was oppressed by the filthy conduct of the wicked (for that righteous man, dwelling among them, tormented his righteous soul from day to day by seeing and hearing their lawless deeds) - then the Lord knows how to deliver the godly out of temptations and to re- serve the unjust under punishment for the day of judgment, and especially those who walk according to the flesh in the lust of uncleanness and despise authority. They are pre- sumptuous, self-willed. They are not afraid to speak evil of dignitaries, whereas angels, who are greater in power and might, do not bring a reviling accusation against them before the Lord. [ continued next week ]
Lord God, grace us, please, with Your discernment regarding the false teachers currently among us. Thank You for caring for us to the degree You put these warnings in Your Word. May Your generous Spirit illumine our minds, hearts and eyes whereby we better discern the many deceptions today. Unto our protection in these end of days (in which we are, very much so, in harm's way) unto the efforts at reaching the lost, and ultimately, unto Your glory and praise. In the name of Your beloved Son, Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior we pray, amen.
Week of 2/3-7 (B6;20)
II Peter 3:1-9 (NKJV)
Beloved, I now write to you this second epistle (in both of which I stir up your pure minds by way of reminder), that you may be mindful of the words which were spoken before by the holy prophets, and of the commandment of us, the apostles of the Lord and Savior, knowing this first: that scoffers will come in the last days, walking according to their own lusts, and saying, "Where is the promise of His coming? For since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of creation." For this they willfully forget: that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of water and in the water, by which the world that then existed perished, being flooded with water. But the heavens and the earth which are now pre- served by the same word, are reserved for fire until the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men. But, beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.
Thank You, Father God, for caring as You do. Thank You for Your generous patience with us. May some come to You as we continue in these end of days. In Your Son's, our Savior's mighty and holy name we pray, amen.
Note: Please see our Gospel pages on this site if you're open to God's saving message of eternal Hope in Christ Jesus.
Week of 2/10-14 (B7;20)
I Corinthians 15:50-58 (NKJV)
Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does corruption inherit incorruption. Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed - in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, "Death is swallowed up in victory. O Death, where is your sting? O Hades, where is your victory?" The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law but thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.
Faithful Father God, thank You for being ever so True to Your Word. Thank You for Your promises to Your own in death - that death is swallowed up in victory. Thank You for seeing our loved ones in You, safely Home. Thank You for the victory You provided for needy mankind in Your holy Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. And Abba God, help us who remain to be faithful to the end, knowing our kingdom labor on Your behalf is not in vain, especially as we walk in Your Spirit and abide in Your Vine. In Christ Jesus' name we pray, amen.
Valentine's Day celebrations continue ... Praise: Lord YHVH God, You are SO good!
Week of 2/17-21 (B8;20)
I Corinthians 13 (NKJV)
Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all my- steries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I can remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing. Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part. But when that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part will be done away. When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things. For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known. And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the great- est of these is love.
Loving Creator, thank You for showing Your love for us as You do. Thank You for the supreme expression of Your deep love by sending us Your Savior, Christ Jesus our Lord. Thank You for dying for us so that our sins can be forgiven if we but accept Your precious, eternal gift. Lord, wake up some churches to the fact that YOU have called us to love You through our graced-based obedience to You. Help us discern the false teaching that everything's "done" and that we are not to "do." Thank You for being absolutely clear in Your Word on this matter. And thank You, too, for being clear that the works which are honoring to You are done, in Your mercy and grace, by Your generous Spirit within us whereby You get the glory. Thank You for Your call (to us) to honor Your full Word so that we avoid the consequential deceptions of half truths. Thank You that Christ Jesus Your Son atoned for the sins of mankind while on the cross. Yes, Lord, it is finished. Help lost mankind to accept Your gift so as to apply it, personally, to their lives. And thank You, too, that You continue doing wonderful things in and through Your people by Your kind mercies and grace. We praise and magnify Your great name. In Jesus Christ's holy name we pray, amen.
Week of 2/24-28 (B9;20)
Ephesians 6:10-18 (NKJV)
Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints ...
Father YHVH God, thank You for kindly directing Your people in Christ Jesus with the protective Counsel above. As we enjoy Your provision in this context of spiritual warfare, may we press on in Gospel and Discipleship ministry unto Your glory and praise. In Your glorious Son, Christ Jesus we pray.
Week of 3/2-6 (B10;20)
John 14:1-6 (NKJV)
[ Jesus Christ speaking ] "Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father's house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also. And where I go you know, and the way you know." Thomas said to Him, "Lord, we do not know where You are going, and how can we know the way?" Jesus said to him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me."
Lord Jesus, thank You for speaking Truthfully to needy humanity. Lord, may we accept Your significant revelation to us concerning the way of eternal life. May those who need to do so, accept unto regeneration; may those who have already been born anew, walk in our new birth as we rely upon You and Your wonderful provision, Your Holy Spirit within us. We praise You, Father, for Your kind, ongoing grace! Unto Your glory and praise we pray, amen.
Week of 3/9-13 (B11;20)
I Corinthians 15:50-52 (NKJV)
Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does corruption inherit incorruption. Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed - in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.
YHVH God, we long for your Son's return and the gathering together of His elect. Until that time, Lord, and until His initial appearing, help us to abide in Your precious Holy Spirit so that we are supernaturally - by You - enabled Ambassadors on Your behalf, equipped to represent You in a manner pleasing to You, Oh Lord Most High. In Jesus Christ's name we pray, amen.
[ YHVH ] God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, * even though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; though its waters roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with its swelling. Selah
There is a river whose streams shall make glad the city of God, the holy place of the tabernacle of the Most High. God is in the midst of her, she shall not be moved; God shall help her, just at the break of dawn. The nations raged, the kingdoms were moved; He uttered His voice, the earth melted. The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah
Come, behold the works of the LORD, who has made desolations in the earth. He makes wars cease to the end of the earth; He breaks the bow and cuts the spear in two; He burns the chariot in the fire. Be still and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth! The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah
Father God, You are great and greatly to be praised! You grace man with things which allow for the bending of our knees in wor- ship. Thank You! Lord, You dwell in Your Church in Jesus Christ Your holy Son. Indeed, You are in the midst of us as this psalm powerfully highlights when we contemplate the blessings of Your New Covenant in Christ. May we glean the insights You have so kindly extended in I & II Thessalonians concerning Your Church being persecuted YET eventually experiencing Your deliverance - in Your time. As did the church in Thessalonica, help us endure through the tribulations too. * And LORD, help us not to fear, even as the earth suffers from COVID-19. May Jesus Christ be praised. Amen
Week of 3/23-27 (B13;20)
Psalm 100 (NKJV)
Preamble: "It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man. It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in princes." Psalm 118:8, 9 ; NKJV
Make a joyful shout to the LORD, all you lands! Serve the LORD with gladness; come before His presence with singing. Know that the LORD, He is God. It is He who made us, and not we ourselves; We are His people and the sheep of His pasture. Enter into His gates with thanksgiving, and into His courts with praise. Be thankful to Him, and bless His name. For the LORD is good; His mercy is everlasting, and His truth endures to all generations.
LORD God, we bless and magnify Your glorious name. We give thanks to You who alone are great and greatly to be praised! We exalt You in all things. Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For Thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever and ever, amen. Even so, come quickly Lord Jesus. Amen
2nd Quarter Blogs
Week of 3/30 - 4/3 (B14;20)
[ My precious wife is playing (on the piano), We Exalt Thee as I write out this blog. Sweet background music indeed. ]
Psalm 119:97-100; 105 (NKJV)
Oh, how I love Your law! It is my meditation all the day. You, through Your commandments, make me wiser than my enemies; for they are ever with me. I have more understanding than all my teachers, for Your testimonies are my meditation. I understand more than the ancients, because I keep Your pre- cepts. Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.
Forever, O Lord, Your word is settled in heaven. The entirety of Your word is truth, and every one of Your righteous judgments endures forever. (Psalm 119:89, 160 ; NKJV)
Father God, You are great and we adore Thee. Thank You for warning us as You have. On behalf of those who have taken Your Son’s Counsel seriously: THANK YOU for the provisions we currently enjoy in more lean circum- stances. Thank You for Mt. 24:45ff. May we apply tHis Counsel and prepare in ways outlined in Your precious Word. As we obey You, we are graced to share provisions with others in need. Help us in Your Gospel - as Your Word outlines! - and Discipleship - as Your holy Word outlines! - ministries. We work Your fields unto Your glory and praise. Even so, please come quickly Lord Jesus. Until then, protect us as we bathe in Your Word. In Jesus Christ’s holy name we pray, amen.
Week of 4/6-10 (B15;20)
Psalm 107:1-32 (NKJV)
Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever. Let the redeemed of the LORD say so, whom He has redeemed from the hand of the enemy, and gathered out of the lands, from the east and from the west, from the north and from the south. They wandered in the wilderness in a desolate way; they found no city to dwell in. Hungry and thirsty, their soul fainted in them. Then they cried out to the LORD in their trouble, and He delivered them out of their distresses. And He led them forth by the right way, that they might go to a city for a dwelling place. Oh, that men would give thanks to the LORD for His goodness, and for His wonderful works to the children of men! For He satisfies the longing soul, and fills the hungry soul with goodness. Those who sat in darkness and in the shadow of death, bound in affliction and irons - because they rebelled against the words of God, and despised the counsel of the Most High, therefore He brought down their heart with labor; they fell down, and there was none to help. Then they cried out to the LORD in their trouble, and He saved them out of their distresses. He brought them out of darkness and the shadow of death, and broke their chains in pieces. Oh, that men would give thanks to the LORD for His goodness, and for His wonderful works to the children of men! For He has broken the gates of bronze, and cut the bars of iron in two. Fools, because of their transgression, and because of their iniquities, were afflicted. Their soul abhorred all manner of food, and they drew near to the gates of death. Then they cried out to the LORD in their trouble, and He saved them out of their distresses. He sent His word and healed them, and delivered them from their destructions. Oh, that men would give thanks to the LORD for His goodness, and for His wonderful works to the children of men! Let them sacri- fice the sacrifices of thanksgiving, and declare His works with rejoicing. Those who go down to the sea in ships, who do business on great waters, they see the works of the LORD, and His won- ders in the deep. For He commands and raises the stormy wind, which lifts up the waves of the sea. They mount up to the heavens, they go down again to the depths; their soul melts because of trouble. They reel to and fro, and stagger like a drunken man, and are at their wits' end. Then they cry out to the LORD in their trouble, and He brings them out of their distresses. He calms the storm, so that its waves are still. Then they are glad because they are quiet; so He guides them to their desired haven. Oh, that men would give thanks to the LORD for His goodness, and for His wonderful works to the children of men! Let them exalt Him also in the assembly of the people, and praise Him in the company of the elders.
The following prayer is taken from Lenten Postcards: Daily Devotions Inspired By The Book Of Common Prayer ; pg. 103 ; The Foundry Publishing ; 2019. In this season of Lent, before our LORD's passion, we pray:
Lord, we long for the consummation of all things. We ache for your kingdom to come in its fullness. We confess that we often imagine the path to victory as a simple ascent to the mountaintop. We forget that redemption was found not in the glory of the peak but in the bloodstained dust of the valley, in the cold, unforgiving walls of a tomb. May we follow you - to peaks and through valleys - for the sake of your coming kingdom.
Week of 4/13-17 (B16;20)
Jesus Christ preached repentance and secured salvation for all of mankind (who need to, on an individual basis, accept His eternally significant sacrifice for sin in order to apply it personally). As One having ALL authority in heaven and on earth, listen, please, to the Lord of lords, the King of kings:
"Repent, for the Kingdom of heaven is at hand." Jesus Christ - Matthew 4:17b
[ Please read our most recent commentary blog - CB4F - before continuing. Click Here ]
Psalm 95 (NKJV)
Oh come, let us sing to the LORD! Let us shout joyfully to the Rock of our salvation. Let us come before His presence with thanksgiving; let us shout joyfully to Him with psalms. For the LORD is the great God, and the great King above all gods. In His hand are the deep places of the earth; the heights of the hills are His also. The sea is His, for He made it; and His hands formed the dry land. Oh come, let us worship and bow down; let us kneel before the LORD our Maker. For He is our God, and we are the people of His pasture, and the sheep of His hand. Today, if you will hear His voice: "Do not harden your hearts, as in the rebellion, as in the day of trial in the wilderness, when your fathers tested Me; they tried Me, though they saw My work. For forty years I was grieved with that generation, and said, 'It is a people who go astray in their hearts, and they do not know My ways.' So I swore in My wrath, 'They shall not enter My rest.'"
Father YHVH God, we once again PRAISE YOU for graciously providing YOUR salvation through Your Son, Jesus Christ. In these days of resurrection celebration, we glorify YOU for Your kind deliverance - great is Your mercy oh LORD. As we know, You are here and are not silent as You take interest in and are involved with the matters of man. THANK YOU for being our heavenly Father who loves us enough to discipline us when we go astray. Soften hearts toward repentance, we pray. And may Your Holy Spirit continue convicting those who choose to retain hard hearts like Pharaoh of old. Even so, please come quickly Lord Jesus! In Christ's name we pray, amen.
Week of 4/20-24 (B17;20)
Isaiah 26 (NKJV)
In that day this song will be sung in the land of Judah: "We have a strong city; God will appoint salvation for walls and bulwarks. Open the gates, that the righteous nation which keeps the truth may enter in. You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You. Trust in the Lord forever, for in Yah, the LORD, is everlasting strength. For He brings down those who dwell on high, the lofty city; He lays it low, He lays it low to the ground, He brings it down to the dust. The foot shall tread it down - the feet of the poor and the steps of the needy." The way of the just is uprightness; O Most Upright, You weigh the path of the just. Yes, in the way of Your judg- ments, O Lord, we have waited for You; the desire of our soul is for Your name and for the remembrance of You. With my soul I have desired You in the night, yes, by my spirit within me I will seek You early; for when Your judg- ments are in the earth, the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness. Let grace be shown to the wicked, yet he will not learn righteousness; in the land of uprightness he will deal unjustly, and will not behold the majesty of the LORD. LORD, when Your hand is lifted up, they will not see. But they will see and be ashamed for their envy of people; yes, the fire of Your enemies shall devour them. LORD, You will establish peace for us, for You have also done all our works in us. O LORD our God, masters be- sides You have had dominion over us, but by You only we make mention of Your name. They are dead, they will not live; they are deceased, they will not rise. There- fore You have punished and destroyed them, and made all their memory to perish. You have increased the nation, O LORD, You have increased the nation; You are glorified; You have expanded all the borders of the land. LORD, in trouble they have visited You, they poured out a prayer when Your chastening was upon them. As a woman with child is in pain and cries out in her pangs, when she draws near the time of her delivery, so have we been in Your sight, O LORD. We have been with child, we have been in pain; we have, as it were, brought forth wind; we have not accomplished any deliverance in the earth, nor have the inhabitants of the world fallen. Your dead shall live; together with my dead body they shall arise. Awake and sing, you who dwell in dust; for your dew is like the dew of herbs, and the earth shall cast out the dead. Come, my people, enter your chambers, and shut your doors behind you; hide yourself, as it were, for a little moment, until the indignation is past. For behold, the LORD comes out of His place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity; the earth will also disclose her blood, and will no more cover her slain.
Father God, LORD God Most High, send Your Son soon, we pray. In Jesus Christ's holy and glorious name, amen.
Week of 4/27 - 5/1 (B18;20)
Our devotional reading for this week highlights the first six chapters of the Book of Daniel.
Suggested reading schedule for this special week:
Monday, 4/27 Daniel 1 Tuesday, 4/28 Daniel 2 Wednesday, 4/29 Daniel 3 Thursday, 4/30 Daniel 4 Friday, 5/1 Daniel 5 Saturday, 5/2 Daniel 6
Father God, thank You for gracing us with Your righteous principles to live by as we bow to Your authority over us. Thank You so for the HUGE, pertinent messages found in each of these chapters. As we listen to Your Spirit's leading, we thank You in advance for the fruit that will come as Your Word goes forth. As parents treat their children differently but fairly, so too do we thank You for leading Your people in diverse applications of Your Word as we live out our specific gifts unto Your glory and praise. In Jesus Christ's name we thank You for II Timothy 3:16, 17. Amen.
Week of 5/4-8 (B19;20)
Psalm 119:1-8 (NLT) ; Revelation 2:1-7 (ESV)
Happy are people of integrity, who follow the law of the LORD. Happy are those who obey his decrees and search for him with all their hearts. They do not compromise with evil, and they walk only in his paths. You have charged us to keep your commandments carefully. Oh, that my actions would consistently reflect your principles! Then I will not be disgraced when I compare my life with your commands. When I learn your righteous laws, I will thank you by living as I should! I will obey your principles. Please don't give up on me!
"To the angel of the church of Ephesus write: 'The words of him who holds the seven stars in his right hand, who walks among the seven golden lampstands. I know your works, your toil and your patient endurance, and how you cannot bear with those who are evil, but have tested those who call themselves apostles and are not, and found them to be false. I know you are enduring patiently and bearing up for my name's sake, and you have not grown weary. But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first. Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first. If not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent. Yet this you have: you hate the works of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To the one who conquers I will grant to eat of the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God.'"
Glorious Heavenly Father ... Your ways are surely not our ways, O LORD Most High. You call us to walk Your glorious path while knowing full well we will wander. As You know all things, You know we need provision for forgiveness of sin. THANK YOU for so generously providing Your heavenly cleansing through Jesus Christ Your Son. And THANK YOU for calling us back to Your Word in these early verses of Psalm 119. Thank You, too, for Your eternal Word's Counsel as to our persistent weaknesses. We praise You for loving us enough to help us walk the path of humility before You by being willing to confess and repent when we need to do so. LORD, open our eyes to the nevertheless I have this against you things that we've not sufficiently let go of, things which douse our first love for You. Thy Word, O LORD, is a lamp unto our feet; a light to our path. We pray these things in the holy name of Jesus Christ Your Son, our Lord. Amen
Week of 5/11-15 (B20;20)
Psalm 119:9-16 (NLT); Revelation 2:8-11 (ESV)
How can a young person stay pure? By obeying your word and following its rules. I have tried my best to find you - don't let me wander from your commands. I have hidden your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you. Blessed are you, O LORD; teach me your principles. I have recited aloud all the laws you have given us. I have rejoiced in your decrees as much as in riches. I will study your command- ments and reflect on your ways. I will delight in your principles and not forget your word.
"And to the angel of the church of Smyrna write: 'The words of the first and the last, who died and came to life. I know your tribulation and your poverty (but your are rich) and the slander of those who say that they are Jews and are not, but are a synagogue of Satan. Do not fear what you are about to suffer. Behold, the devil is about to throw some of you into prison, that you may be tested, and for ten days you will have tribulation. Be faithful unto death, and I will give you the crown of life. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. The one who conquers will not be hurt by the second death.'"
Glorious Heavenly Father ... Blessed be Thou O Lord our God. Your holy Word continues to work its wonders. Thank You for the needed authority it extends to those who are Yours. Thank You for graciously providing powerful means to walk in Christ Jesus, Your holy Son. May Your two-edged sword be abundantly present in our lives as we live day by day for You. And may Your Holy Spirit use Your Word within Your own to accomplish, in part, fruit which You graciously bring about in our lives as we abide in Your Son and walk in Your Spirit. And Father, thank You so for cluing us in on some of the dangers ahead. Thank You for providing the means to walk victoriously through these present days of darkness. As we encounter heightened tribulation in the days ahead, please keep us in Your victorious hold whereby we do indeed endure to the end. By faith, dear Lord, we thank You for doing so even before we encounter these battles in the setting of spiritual warfare. We praise, magnify and yes, glorify Your great and holy name. In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ - Who is EVERYTHING to us - we pray, amen.
Week of 5/18-22 (B21;20)
Psalm 119:17-24 (NLT); Revelation 2:12-17 (ESV)
Be good to your servant, that I may live and obey your word. Open my eyes to see the wonderful truths in your law. I am but a foreigner here on earth; I need the guidance of your commands. Don't hide them from me! I am overwhelmed continually with a desire for your laws. You rebuke those cursed proud ones who wander from your commands. Don't let them scorn and insult me, for I have obeyed your decrees. Even princes sit and speak against me, but I will meditate on your principles. Your decrees please me; they give me wise advice.
"And to the angel of the church in Pergamum write: 'The words of him who has the sharp two-edged sword. I know where you dwell, where Satan's throne is. Yet you hold fast my name, and you did not deny my faith even in the days of Antipas my faithful witness, who was killed among you, where Satan dwells. But I have a few things against you: you have some there who hold the teaching of Balaam, who taught Balak to put a stumbling block before the sons of Israel, so that they might eat food sacrificed to idols and practice sexual immorality. So also you have some who hold the teaching of the Nicolaitans. Therefore repent. If not, I will come to you soon and war against them with the sword of my mouth. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To the one who con- quers, I will give some of the hidden manna, and I will give him a white stone, with a new name written on the stone that no one knows except the one who receives it.'"
Glorious Heavenly Father ... We praise You for sending Your Holy Spirit following Your Son's ascension. Thank You for gracing Your children with open eyes to understand Your Word. And thank You for equipping us with Your resources to obey Your Word. Lord, rebuke those who walk in pride and who reject Your Counsel. And Lord, help us - Your children - to walk in humility and be willing to confess and repent when we need to do so. Help open our eyes and soften our hearts to the fact that sexual sins so undermine our walk with You. Thank You for Your consistent call through the ages. Indeed, obedience brings blessing; disobedience brings judgment. Lord, we don't want to quench, grieve or insult Your Spirit. May we, in Your strength, lovingly obey You as You've so clearly outlined in Your precious Word. In Jesus Christ's holy name we pray, amen.
Week of 5/25-29 (B22;20)
Psalm 119:25-32 (NLT); Revelation 2:18-29 (ESV)
I lie in the dust, completely discouraged; revive me by your word. I told you my plans, and you answered. Now teach me your principles. Help me understand the meaning of your commandments, and I will meditate on your wonderful miracles. I weep with grief; encourage me by your word. Keep me from lying to myself; give me the privilege of knowing your law. I have chosen to be faithful; I have determined to live by your laws. I cling to your decrees. LORD, don't let me be put to shame! If you will help me, I will run to follow your commands.
"And to the angel of the church in Thyatira write: 'The words of the Son of God, who has eyes like a flame of fire, and whose feet are like burnished bronze. I know your works, your love and faith and service and patient endurance, and that your latter works exceed the first. But I have this against you, that you tolerate that woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess and is teaching and seducing my servants to practice sexual immorality and to eat food sacrificed to idols. I gave her time to repent, but she refuses to repent of her sexual immorality. Behold, I will throw her onto a sickbed, and those who commit adultery with her I will throw into great tribulation, unless they repent of her works, and I will strike her children dead. And all the churches will know that I am he who searches mind and heart, and I will give to each of you as your works deserve. But to the rest of you in Thyatira, who do not hold this teaching, who have not learned what some call the deep things of Satan, to you I say, I do not lay on you any other burden. Only hold fast what you have until I come. The one who conquers and who keeps my works until the end, to him I will give authority over the nations, and he will rule them with a rod of iron, as when earthen pots are broken in pieces, even as I myself have received authority from my Father. And I will give him the morning star. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.'"
Glorious Heavenly Father ... Hear our prayers as we repeat the Psalm reading above. And LORD, we thank You once again for gracing us with tremendous insight in Your word. We are humbled Lord. We are impressed. May Your instruction to Your churches be heeded. Help us correct this sin of our of being too tolerant toward evil. Embolden us to love You first by honoring You through rejection of the dark compromises we have embraced. Open our eyes to the reality that You DO discipline Your imperfect kids. In loving fear of You, O Lord, help us to turn from our wicked ways and lukewarm living. Help us to patiently endure during these end of days. May we be Your lights to a needy generation. As the song goes, Lord, and as we pray, hear, this our prayer: In our lives, Lord, be glorified, be glorified today. In Jesus Christ's precious and holy name we pray, amen.
Week of 6/1-5 (B23;20)
Psalm 119:33-40 (NLT); Revelation 3:1-6 (ESV)
Teach me, O LORD, to follow every one of your principles. Give me understanding and I will obey your law; I will put it into practice with all my heart. Make me walk along the path of your commands, for that is where my happiness is found. Give me an eagerness for your decrees; do not inflict me with love for money! Turn my eyes from worthless things, and give me life through your word. Reassure me of your promise, which is for those who honor you. Help me abandon my shameful ways; your laws are all I want in life. I long to obey your commandments! Renew my life with your goodness.
"And to the angel of the church in Sardis write: 'The words of him who has the seven spirits of God and the seven stars. I know your works. You have the reputation of being alive, but your are dead. Wake up, and strengthen what remains and is about to die, for I have not found your works complete in the sight of God. Remember, then, what you received and heard. Keep it, and repent. If you will not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come against you. Yet you have still a few names in Sardis, people who have not soiled their garments, and they will walk with me in white, for they are worthy. The one who conquers will be clothed thus in white garments, and I will never blot his name out of the book of life. I will confess his name before my Father and before his angels. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.'"
Glorious Heavenly Father ... Hear our prayers as we repeat the Psalm reading above. Yes LORD, turn away my eyes from looking at worthless things. As You Counsel Your end-time people, help us walk in purity during these end of days. May we exude humility by, in part, being willing to confess our needy state. Help us to be watchful, to hold fast and to repent when we need to do so. And Lord, help us to watch as You have so clearly mandated, for we don't want to be like the worldly who will be caught by surprise - as a thief in the night. Lord, we fear You in the context of biblical fear. Please grace us with being overcomers who are not blotted out of Thy Book of Life. We long to honor and glorify Your holy name through eternity. In Jesus Christ's matchless name we pray, amen.
Week of 6/8-12 (B24;20)
Psalm 119:41-48 (NLT); Revelation 3:7-13 (ESV)
LORD, give to me your unfailing love, the salvation that you promised me. Then I will have an answer for those who taunt me, for I trust in your word. Do not snatch your word of truth from me, for my only hope is in your laws. I will keep on obeying your law forever and forever. I will walk in freedom, for I have devoted myself to your commandments. I will speak to kings about your decrees, and I will not be ashamed. How I delight in your commands! How I love them! I honor and love your commands. I medi- tate on your principles.
"And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write: 'The words of the holy one, the true one, who has the key of David, who opens and no one will shut, who shuts and no one opens. I know your works. Behold, I have set before you an open door, which no one is able to shut. I know that you have but little power, and yet you have kept my word and have not denied my name. Behold, I will make those of the synagogue of Satan who say that they are Jews and are not, but lie - behold, I will make them come and bow down before your feet and they will learn that I have loved you. Because you have kept my word about patient endurance, I will keep you from the hour of trial that is coming on the whole world, to try those who dwell on the earth. I am coming soon. Hold fast what you have, so that no one may seize your crown. The one who conquers, I will make him a pillar in the temple of my God. Never shall he go out of it, and I will write on him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, which comes down from my God out of heaven, and my own new name. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.'"
Glorious Heavenly Father ... Hear our prayers as we repeat the Psalm reading above. LORD God, thank You for Your glorious Son - the eternal Word incarnate. Thank You for sending Him soon. As we depend upon Your power - for ours is weak - we ask You to glorify Your name as we serve as Your loving, end-time Ambassadors in Christ Jesus. Help us with 'patient endur- ance' dear YHVH God. And thank You for keeping us from the hour of trial as You pour Your bowls of wrath upon the earth dwellers. Until our final trumpet rapture gathering, help us hold fast, we pray. Thank You for seeing us through these dark days as we walk in Your Holy Spirit. We praise and glorify Your great name. And Lord, we sure look forward to the day of Your Son's rule. Even so, please come quickly Lord Jesus. Amen
Week of 6/15-19 (B25;20)
Psalm 119:49-56 (NLT); Revelation 3:14-22 (ESV)
Remember your promise to me, for it is my only hope. Your promise revives me; it comforts me in all my troubles. The proud hold me in utter contempt, but I do not turn away from your law. I meditate on your age-old laws; O LORD, they comfort me. I am furious with the wicked, those who reject your law. Your principles have been the music of my life through the years of my pilgrimage. I reflect at night on who you are, O LORD, and I obey your law because of this. This is my happy way of life: obeying your commandments.
"And to the angel of the church in Laodicea write: 'The words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of God's creation. I know your works: you are neither cold nor hot. Would that you were either cold or hot! So, because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth. For you say, I am rich, I have prospered, and I need nothing, not realizing that you are wretched, pitiable, poor, blind, and naked. I counsel you to buy from me gold refined by fire, so that you may be rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself and the shame of your nakedness may not be seen, and salve to anoint your eyes, so that you may see. Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline, so be zealous and repent. Be- hold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me. The one who conquers, I will grant him to sit with me on my throne, as I also conquered and sat down with my Father on his throne. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.'"
Glorious Heavenly Father ... Hear our prayers as we repeat the Psalm reading above. Father God, thank You for the loving discipline of Your Son. Open our eyes to our wretched state and move us to humble repentance lest Your judgment fall upon us. Lord, Thank You for caring enough to confront your erring children in Christ. Help us to accept the fact that He will cast out many on the day of judgment, even those who say they are Yours but who have proved themselves lukewarm. Help us to properly fear You. We need to repent, Lord. We are so grateful for Your patient kindness to us. How You're willing to stand at the door of our hearts while we keep falling, baffles us. Great is your mercy Oh God of glory, God of grace. Help us Lord to seek Thy face. You who dwell above the earth; You who gave us second birth: God of glory, God of grace, help us Lord to seek Thy face. In Jesus Christ's matchless name we pray, amen.
Week of 6/22-26 (B26;20)
Psalm 119:57-64 (NLT); Matthew 24:1-8 (NKJV)
LORD, you are mine! I promise to obey your words! With all my heart I want your blessings. Be merciful just as you promised. I pondered the direction of my life, and I turned to follow your statutes. I will hurry, without lingering, to obey your commands. Evil people try to drag me into sin, but I am firmly anchored to your law. At midnight I rise to thank you for your just laws. Anyone who fears you is my friend - anyone who obeys your commandments. O LORD, the earth is full of your unfailing love; teach me your principles.
Then Jesus went out and departed from the temple, and His disciples came up to show Him the buildings of the temple. And Jesus said to them, "Do you not see all these things? Assuredly, I say to you, not one stone shall be left here upon another, that shall not be thrown down." Now as He sat on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to Him privately, saying, "Tell us, when will these things be? And what will be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age?" And Jesus answered and said to them: "Take heed that no one deceives you. For many will come in My name, saying, 'I am the Christ,' and will deceive many. And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled; for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of sorrows."
Glorious Heavenly Father ... Hear our prayers as we repeat the Psalm reading above. And LORD, thank You for informing us on the end of days. Open our eyes whereby we discern the lateness of the hour. Help us heed Your commands, ones which You've graciously given us through Jesus Christ Your beloved Son. Yes LORD, THANK YOU for His instruction in Matthew 24 & 25! May we be Your accurate Ambassadors during these days just prior to Your Son's initial appearing. Help us, LORD, endure to the end. In Jesus Christ's holy name we pray, amen.
3rd Quarter Blogs
Week of 6/29 - 7/3 (B27;20)
Psalm 119:65-72 (NLT); Matthew 24:9-14 (NKJV)
You have done many good things for me, LORD, just as you promised. I believe in your commands; now teach me good judgment and knowledge. I used to wander off until you disciplined me; but now I closely follow your word. You are good and do only good; teach me your principles. Arrogant people have made up lies about me, but in truth I obey your commandments with all my heart. Their hearts are dull and stupid, but I delight in your law. The suffering you sent was good for me, for it taught me to pay attention to your principles. Your law is more valuable to me than millions in gold and silver!
[ Jesus Christ speaking ] "Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and kill you, and you will be hated by all nations for My name's sake. And then many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another. Then many false prophets will rise up and deceive many. And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold. But he who endures to the end shall be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come."
Glorious Heavenly Father ... Hear our prayers as we repeat the Psalm reading above. Beloved LORD, great is Your love for us. Even in these days filled with dark rejection of Your wonders, You love us. Thank You Lord God Most High. And we once again praise You for providing miraculous means for us to rise above our present circumstances and live abundantly. All praise and honor and glory to Your name. So, LORD, do grace us with Your Holy Spirit within us so that we may indeed endure to the end. Help us love others, even in evil settings. May we be Christ-like as we partake in the sufferings of Your beloved Son. We sure have a hard time comprehending the world's hate toward You. May Your love be that which allows us, in part, to overcome - to rise above the darkness of this hour. Father YHVH God, it's all about Your Son. Glory to Your name. In Jesus Christ's name we pray, amen.
Week of 7/6-10 (B28;20)
Psalm 119:73-80 (NLT); Matthew 24:15-28 (NKJV)
You made me; you created me. Now give me the sense to follow your commands. May all who fear you find in me a cause for joy, for I have put my hope in your word. I know, O LORD, that your decisions are fair; you disciplined me because I needed it. Now let your unfailing love comfort me, just as you promised me, your servant. Surround me with your tender mercies so I may live, for your law is my delight. Bring disgrace upon the arrogant people who lied about me; meanwhile, I will concentrate on your commandments. Let me be reconciled with all who fear you and know your decrees. May I be blameless in keeping your principles; then I will never have to be ashamed.
[ Jesus Christ speaking ] "Therefore when you see the 'abomination of desolation,' spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place" (whoever reads, let him under- stand), "then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. Let him who is on the housetop not go down to take anything out of his house. And let him who is in the field not go back to get his clothes. But woe to those who are pregnant and to those who are nursing babies in those days! And pray that your flight may not be in winter or on the Sabbath. For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world, until this time, no, nor ever shall be. And unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved; but for the elect's sake those days will be shortened. Then if anyone says to you, 'Look, here is the Christ!' or 'There!' do not believe it. For false christs and false prophets will rise and show great signs and won- ders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. See, I have told you beforehand. Therefore if they say to you, 'Look, He is in the desert!' do not go out; or 'Look, He is in the inner rooms!' do not believe it. For as the lightning comes from the east and flashes to the west, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. For wherever the carcass is, there the eagles will be gathered together."
Glorious Heavenly Father ... Hear our prayers as we repeat the Psalm reading above. Most High, we honor and praise Your holy name. We exalt You together. Father, may Your precious Holy Spirit be our means to walk appropriately with You. Help us, even in our seeking understanding from Your Word, to rightly divide Your Word of Truth. Help us discern our day given the spirit of antichrist continues to manifest itself - even in churches - through false teachers, false christs and false prophets. And when the day of the miraculous false christs and false prophets come, if we remain, may we heed Your Son's instruction above. Until that day, may we take up our crosses daily as we die to self and follow Him. In Jesus Christ's name we pray, amen.
Week of 7/13-17 (B29;20)
Psalm 119:81-88 (NLT); Matthew 24:29-31 (NKJV)
I faint with longing for your salvation; but I have put my hope in your word. My eyes are straining to see your promises come true. When will you comfort me? I am shriveled like a wineskin in the smoke, exhausted with waiting. But I cling to your principles and obey them. How long must I wait? When will you punish those who persecute me? These arrogant people who hate your law have dug deep pits for me to fall into. All your commands are trustworthy. Protect me from those who hunt me down without cause. They almost finish me off, but I refuse to abandon your commandments. In your unfailing love, spare my life; then I can con- tinue to obey your decrees.
[ Jesus Christ speaking ] "Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other."
Glorious Heavenly Father ... Hear our prayers as we repeat the Psalm reading above. And Lord, thank You for coming soon. Until Your glorious revealing, please help Your children endure to the end. Help us to be intruments of reconciliation with You as we hearld Your Good News to mankind. May Your sheep discern one of our great needs today, instruction penned long ago in Mt. 28:18-20. Lord, help us discern our day and realize Your Son's glorious initial appearing is soon. Father, help us redeem the time, for the days are indeed evil. In Your beloved Son's holy name we pray, amen.
Week of 7/20-24 (B30;20)
Psalm 119:89-96 (NLT); Matthew 24:32-35 (NKJV)
Forever, O LORD, your word stands firm in heaven. Your faithfulness extends to every generation, as enduring as the earth you created. Your laws remain true today, for everything serves your plans. If your law hadn't sustained me with joy, I would have died in my misery. I will never forget your commandments, for you have used them to restore my joy and health. I am yours; save me! For I have applied myself to obey your commandments. Though the wicked hide along the way to kill me, I will quiet my mind on your decrees. Even perfection has its limits, but your commands have no limit.
[ Jesus Christ speaking ] "Now learn this parable from the fig tree: When its branch has already become tender and puts forth leaves, you know that summer is near. So you also, when you see all these things, know that it is near - at the doors! Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all these things take place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away."
Glorious Heavenly Father ... Hear our prayers as we repeat the Psalm reading above. And Lord, thank You for coming soon. This is indeed the final generation before Your Son's glorious return. Until His glorious revealing, please help Your children discern our dark culture and thus be watchful as You, Lord Jesus, have so clearly outlined. In the process of being Your Ambassadors, Lord, help us to be intruments of reconciliation with You as we hearld Your Good News to mankind. May we Your sheep be about Your mandates to us - Pertinent, God-Honoring Evangelism (PG-HE) & Contemporary Bible Discipleship (CBD) unto Your glory and praise. Yes Lord, please help us better discern the present global realities and act in accord with Your full-picture reality, one which so graciously includes this: Your Son's glorious initial appearing is soon. Dear Father, help us redeem the time, for the days are indeed evil. In Your holy Son's - Jesus Christ's - precious name we pray, amen.
Week of 7/27-31 (B31;20)
Psalm 119:97-104 (NLT); Matthew 24:36-44 (NKJV)
Oh, how I love your law! I think about it all day long. Your commands make me wiser than my enemies, for your commands are my constant guide. Yes, I have more insight than my teachers, for I am always thinking of your decrees. I am even wiser than my elders, for I have kept your commandments. I have refused to walk on any path of evil, that I may remain obedient to your word. I haven't turned away from your laws, for you have taught me well. How sweet are your words to my taste; they are sweeter than honey. Your command- ments give me understanding; no wonder I hate every false way of life.
[ Jesus Christ speaking ] "But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, but My Father only. But as the days of Noah were, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. For as in the days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and did not know until the flood came and took them all away, so also will be the coming of the Son of Man be. Then two men will be in the field: one will be taken and the other left. Two women will be grinding at the mill: one will be taken and the other left. Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour your Lord is coming. But know this, that if the master of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would have watched and not allowed his house to be broken into. Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect."
Glorious Heavenly Father ... Hear our prayers as we repeat the Psalm reading above. And Lord, thank You for exposing false interpretations of Your Word as we consult parallel passages concerning Your Son's Counsel. Thank You for clarity in Luke 17:20-37 as You also include Lot in Your similes. Indeed, the gathering of Your Church will take place and those left behind will then incur Your Bowls of Wrath. Even so, please come quickly Lord Jesus. In Your holy name we pray, amen.
Week of 8/3-7 (B32;20)
Psalm 119:105-112 (NLT); Matthew 24:45-51 (NKJV)
Your word is a lamp for my feet and a light for my path. I've promised it once, and I'll promise again: I will obey your wonderful laws. I have suffered much, O LORD; restore my life again, just as you promised. LORD, accept my grateful thanks and teach me your laws. My life constantly hangs in the balance, but I will not stop obeying your law. The wicked have set their traps for me along your path, but I will not turn from your command- ments. Your decrees are my treasure; they are truly my heart's delight. I am determined to keep your principles, even forever, to the very end.
[ Jesus Christ speaking ] "Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his master made ruler over his household, to give them food is due season? Blessed is that servant whom his master, when he comes, will find so doing. Assuredly, I say to you that he will make him ruler over all his goods. But if that evil servant says in his heart, 'My master is delaying his coming,' and begins to beat his fellow servants, and to eat and drink with the drunkards, the master of that servant will come on a day when he is not looking for him and at an hour that he is not aware of, and will cut him in two and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites. There shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth."
Glorious Heavenly Father ... Hear our prayers as we repeat the Psalm reading above. And Lord, as we seek Your instruction - as we ponder Your kind Word - please open our eyes that we may behold the wonderful things that are therein. Father God, in light of Your Son's instruction, help us to take seriously Your Son's marching orders in these verses, ones through which You express care to us and those to whom we minister as we provide food during days filled with lack. Help us give generously as Your Son did when He fed the thousands. Help us to redeem these times unto Your glory and praise. We love You Lord. Thank You for first loving us! With deep praise and gratitude in the Lord Jesus we pray, amen.
Week of 8/10-14 (B33;20)
Psalm 119:113-120 (NLT); Matthew 25:1-13 (NKJV - emphasis ours)
I hate those who are undecided about you, but my choice is clear - I love your law. You are my refuge and my shield; your word is my only source of hope. Get out of my life, you evil-minded people, for I intend to obey the commands of my God. LORD, sustain me as you promised, that I may live! Do not let my hope be crushed. Sustain me and I will be saved; then I will meditate on your principles continually. But you have rejected all who stray from your principles. They are only fooling themselves. All the wicked of the earth are the scum you skim off; no wonder I love to obey your decrees! I tremble in fear of you; I fear your judgments."
[ Jesus Christ speaking ] "Then the kingdom of heaven shall be likened to ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. Now five of them were wise, and five were foolish. Those who were foolish took their lamps and took no oil with them, but the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. But while the bridegroom was delayed, they all slumbered and slept. And at midnight a cry was heard: 'Behold, the bridegroom is coming, go out to meet him!' Then all those virgins arose and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said to the wise, 'Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.' But the wise answered, saying, 'No, lest there should not be enough for us and you; but go rather to those who sell, and buy for yourselves.' And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the wedding; and the door was shut. Afterward the other virgins came also, saying, 'Lord, Lord, open to us!' But he answered and said, 'Assuredly, I say to you, I do not know you.' Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour in which the Son of Man is coming."
Glorious Heavenly Father ... At times it's challenging to repeat the Psalm reading above. Yet, we endure in following Your examples to us. May we heed Your instruction in II Timothy 3:1-5 and discern the wisdom of obedience to verse 5! We don't want the dark- ness of culture today to affect our walk with You. Lord, like Lot we cry out, 'deliver us from our evil day.' Lord, please come quickly. The evils of our day are pressing. Lord, we cry out, 'deliver us from the worldly bondages,' similar to the cries of Your people in bondage in Egypt millennia ago. Like them, Lord, help us to be patient for YOUR timing of deliverance. Until then, even when early plagues fall, help us endure in honoring You. Keep us from faulting You as Your righteous judgments are sent. And Lord, even now we say THANK YOU for Your deliverace from the days when Your full wrath will be poured upon the earth dwellers. Help us to be prepared virgins who wait for You with Your sufficient provisions in both hand and heart. Thank You, precious Lord Jesus, for Your faithfulness endures forever. Your compassionate mercies are new every morning. Even so, please come quickly Lord Jesus! Amen
Week of 8/17-21 (B34;20)
Psalm 119:121-128 (NLT); Matthew 25:14-18 (NKJV)
Don't leave me to the mercy of my enemies, for I have done what is just and right. Please guarantee a blessing for me. Don't let those who are arrogant oppress me! My eyes strain to see your deliverance, to see the truth of your promise fulfilled. I am your servant; deal with me in unfailing love, and teach me your principles. Give discernment to me, your servant; then I will understand your decrees. LORD, it is time for you to act, for these evil people have broken your law. Truly, I love your commands more than gold, even the finest gold. Truly, each of your commandments is right. That is why I hate every false way.
[ Jesus Christ speaking ] "For the kingdom of heaven is like a man traveling to a far country, who called his own servants and delivered his goods to them. And to one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one, to each according to his own ability; and immediately he went on a journey. Then he who had received the five talents went and traded with them, and made another five talents. And likewise he who had received two gained two more also. But he who had received one went and dug in the ground, and hid his lord's money.
Glorious Heavenly Father ...
Amen to the psalmist's appeals above, especially in light of our New Covenant perspective in Jesus Christ Your holy Son. May we demonstrate our love for You through our acts of obedience, oh Lord God, Most High. Help us, as we walk in Your Spirit, to be faithful stewards unto Your glory and praise. Thank You for being so generous to us dear Father. In Christ Jesus we pray, amen.
Week of 8/24-28 (B35;20)
Psalm 49 (NLT)
Listen to this, all you people! Pay attention, everyone in the world! High and low, rich and poor - listen! For my words are wise, and my thoughts are filled with insight. I listen carefully to many proverbs and solve riddles with inspira- tion from a harp. There is no need to fear when times of trouble come, when enemies are surrounding me. They trust in their wealth and boast of great riches. Yet they cannot redeem them- selves from death by paying a ransom to God. Redemption does not come so easily, for no one can ever pay enough to live forever and never see the grave. Those who are wise must finally die, just like the foolish and senseless, leaving all their wealth behind. The grave is their eternal home, where they will stay forever. They may name their estates after themselves, but they leave their wealth to others. They will not last long despite their riches - they will die like the animals. This is the fate of fools, though they will be remembered as being so wise. Interlude Like sheep, they are led to the grave, where death will be their shepherd. In the moring the godly will rule over them. Their bodies will rot in the grave, far from their grand estates. But as for me, God will redeem my life. He will snatch me from the power of death. Interlude So don't be dismayed when the wicked grow rich, and their homes become ever more splendid. For when they die, they carry nothing with them. Their wealth will not follow them into the grave. In this life they consider themselves fortunate, and the world loudly applauds their success. But they will die like all others before them and never again see the light of day. People who boast of their wealth don't understand that they will die like the animals.
Father God, You are great and we adore Thee. Thank You for Your gracious rescue from the uglies of eternal death in the grave, yes, but also in the Lake of Fire. Thank You for Your dear Son who rescues us from the eternal wrath to come. Lord, may folks consider Your strong, gracious and glorious deliverance! May they say "yes" to the gift Your beloved Son offers them. In Jesus Christ's name we pray, amen.
Week of 8/31 - 9/4 (B36;20)
Psalm 119:129-136 (NLT); Matthew 25:19-30 (NKJV)
Your decrees are wonderful. No wonder I obey them! As your words are taught, they give light; even the simple can understand them. I open my mouth, panting expectantly, longing for your commands. Come and show me your mercy, as you do for all who love your name. Guide my steps by your word, so I will not be overcome by any evil. Rescue me from the oppression of evil people; then I can obey your command- ments. Look down on me with love; teach me all your principles. Rivers of tears gush from my eyes because people disobey your law.
[ Jesus Christ speaking ] "For the kingdom of heaven is like a man traveling to a far country, who called his own servants and delivered his goods to them. And to one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one, to each according to his own ability; and immediately he went on a journey. Then he who had received the five talents went and traded with them, and made another five talents. And likewise he who had received two gained two more also. But he who had received one went and dug in the ground, and hid his lord's money. After a long time the lord of those servants came and settled accounts with them. So he who had received five talents came and brought five other talents, saying, 'Lord, you delivered to me five talents; look, I have gained five more talents besides them.' His lord said to him, 'Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.' He also who had received two talents came and said, 'Lord, you delivered to me two talents; look, I have gained two more talents besides them.' His lord said to him, 'Well done, good and faithful servant; you have been faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.' Then he who had received the one talent came and said, 'Lord, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you have not sown, and gathering where you have not scattered seed. And I was afraid, and went and hid your talent in the ground. Look, there you have what is yours.' But his lord answered and said to him, 'You wicked and lazy servant, you knew that I reap where I have not sown, and gather where I have not scattered seed. So you ought to have deposited my money with the bankers, and at my coming I would have received back my own with interest. Therefore take the talent from him, and give it to him who has ten talents. For to every- one who has, more will be given, and he will have abundance; but from him who does not have, even what he has will be taken away. And cast the unprofitable servant into the outer darkness. There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.'"
Glorious Heavenly Father, thank You for Your generous talent gifting. May we take what You have so lovingly given and invest our lives in Your eternal Kingdom. May we do so for your glory and praise, knowing that what You graciously grant by way of reward will be used throughout eternity to bring You even further glory and praise. YHVH Father God, thank You for being so generous to us. We adore You - You who are the one and only God. In the name of Your holy Son, Jesus Christ, we pray, amen.
Week of 9/7-11 (B37;20)
Psalm 119:137-144 (NLT); Matthew 25:31-46 (NKJV)
O LORD, you are righteous, and your decisions are fair. Your decrees are perfect; they are entirely worthy of our trust. I am overwhelmed with rage, for my ememies have disregarded your words. Your promises have been thoroughly tested; that is why I love them so much. I am insignificant and despised, but I don't forget your commandments. Your justice is eternal, and your law is perfectly true. As pressure and stress bear down on me, I find joy in your commands. Your decrees are always fair; help me to understand them, that I may live.
[ Jesus Christ speaking ] "When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory. All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats. And He will set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the left. Then the King will say to those on His right hand, 'Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the founda- tion of the world: for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.' Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, 'Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink? When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You ? Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You ?' And the King will answer and say to them, 'Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.' Then He will also say to those on the left hand, 'Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels: for I was hungry and you gave Me no food; I was thirsty and you gave Me no drink; I was a stranger and you did not take Me in, naked and you did not clothe Me, sick and in prison and you did not visit Me.' Then they also will answer Him, saying, 'Lord, when did we see You hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to You?' Then He will answer them, saying, 'Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.' And these will go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.'"
Glorious YHVH God, You alone are God. Your rightoues justice is fair, even when You send judgment on the earth to encourage us to turn from our wicked ways. Lord, thank You for loving through Your hand of discipline. Help the lost to understand this HUGE fact. Help even Your people in Christ to accept this HUGE fact. Help us all to see Your just judgment comes with the hope of repentance, for one day You will indeed judge in the context of our eternal state. Lord, we would be sheep, not goats. Help us Lord, to walk in newness of life in Your Son whereby we do good deeds which are pleasing in Your sight. We love Your Word oh God Most High. And, Father God, thank You for Your kind Spirit. May we walk day by day in Him. In Jesus Christ's holy name we pray, amen.
Week of 9/14-18 (B38;20)
Psalm 119:145-152 (NLT); Mark 13:1-13 (NKJV)
I pray with all my heart; answer me, LORD! I will obey your principles. I cry out to you; save me, that I may obey your decrees. I rise early, before the sun is up; I cry out for help and put my hope in your words. I stay awake through the night, thinking about your promise. In your faithful love, O LORD, hear my cry; in your justice, save my life. Those lawless people are coming near to attack me; they live far from your law. But you are near, O LORD, and all your commands are true. I have known from my earliest days that your decrees never change.
Then as He [ Jesus Christ ] went out of the temple, one of His disciples said to Him, "Teacher, see what manner of stones and what buildings are here !" And Jesus answered and said to him, "Do you see these great buildings? Not one stone shall be left upon another, that shall not be thrown down." Now as He sat on the Mount of Olives opposite the temple, Peter, James, John, and Andrew asked Him privately, "Tell us, when will these things be? And what will be the sign when all these things will be fulfilled?" And Jesus, answering them, began to say: "Take heed that no one deceives you. For many will come in My name saying, 'I am He,' and will deceive many. But when you hear of wars and rumors of wars, do not be troubled, for such things must happen, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be earthquakes in various places, and there will be famines and troubles. These are the beginning of sorrows. But watch out for yourselves, for they will deliver you up to councils, and you will be beaten in the synagogues. You will be brought before rulers and kings for My sake, for a testimony to them. And the gospel must first be preached to all the nations. But when they arrest you and deliver you up, do not worry beforehand, or premeditate what you will speak. But whatever is given you in that hour, speak that; for it is not you who speak, but the Holy Spirit. Now bro- ther will betray brother to death, and a father his child, and children will rise up against parents and cause them to be put to death. And you will be hated by all for My name's sake. But he who endures to the end shall be saved."
Precious Heavenly Father, we exalt Your great name. We praise You for Your essential revelation to us. My, O LORD, where would we be without Your Word! Thank You for gracing us with it. We are sincerely grateful. And Abba Father, thank You for Your generous Counsel concerning crucial details about the end of days. Thank You for sharing these words of Counsel through Your beloved Son, Jesus Christ. May we be wise in response and heed Your instructions to us. Thank You for Your Holy Spirit within us, helping us to obey. Please, in Your mercy and grace, continue allowing us discernment of present culture as we listen to Your awesome, insightful instruction to- ward the end of enduring to the end. Lord, Your Counsel in Psalm 74 is nothing short of amazing. THANK YOU! In the sweet name of Your beloved Son, our Lord Jesus Christ we pray, amen.
Week of 9/21-25 (B39;20)
Psalm 119:153-160 (NLT); Mark 13:14-23 (NKJV)
Look down upon my sorrows and rescue me, for I have not forgotten your law. Argue my case; take my side! Protect my life as you promised. The wicked are far from salvation, for they do not bother with your principles. LORD, how great is your mercy; in your justice, give me back my life. Many persecute and trouble me, yet I have not swerved from your decrees. I hate these traitors because they care nothing for your word. See how I love your commandments, LORD. Give back my life because of your unfailing love. All your words are true; all your just laws will stand forever.
[ Jesus Christ speaking ] "So when you see the 'abomination of desolation,' spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing where it ought not" (let the reader understand), "then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. Let him who is on the housetop not go down into the house, nor enter to take anything out of his house. And let him who is in the field not go back to get his clothes. But woe to those who are pregnant and to those who are nursing babies in those days! And pray that your flight may not be in winter. For in those days there will be tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the creation which God created until this time, nor ever shall be. And unless the Lord had shortened those days, no flesh would be saved; but for the elect's sake, whom He chose, He shortened the days. Then if anyone says to you, 'Look, here is the Christ!' or, 'Look, He is there!' do not believe it. For false christs and false prophets will rise and show signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. But take heed; see, I have told you all things beforehand."
Holy Heavenly Father, help Your Church to honor You by obeying James 4:4. Indeed friendship with this dark world is a betrayal before You. Thank You for this Psalm which fosters better relational balance with You in light of the full Counsel of Your Word. Lord, help us better prepare for the days ahead as we take on more of Your perspective as we press on in abiding in Your Vine, our Savior. Thank You for telling us of crucial things "beforehand." In Jesus Christ's name we pray, amen.
Week of 9/28 - 10/2 (B40;20)
Psalm 119:161-168 (NLT); Mark 13:24-27 (NKJV)
Powerful people harass me without cause, but my heart trembles only at your word. I rejoice in your word like one who finds a great treasure. I hate and abhor all falsehood, but I love your law. I will praise you seven times a day because all your laws are just. Those who love your law have great peace and do not stumble. I long for your salvation, LORD, so I have obeyed your commands. I have obeyed your decrees, and I love them very much. Yes, I obey your commandments and decrees, because you know everything I do.
[ Jesus Christ speaking ] "But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars of heaven will fall, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken. Then they will see the Son of Man coming in the clouds with great power and glory. And then He will send His angels, and gather together His elect from the four winds, from the farthest part of earth to the farthest part of heaven."
Lord Jesus, Your Counsel is so very appreciated - thank You! Help Your people take note concerning the accuracy of Your prophetic Word. LORD, we lift Your name on high. May we shine Your light to a needy generation in these days preceding the time when the sun, moon and stars will darken following the great earth quake of Revelation 6:12. As has taken place through history in various ways, may the luminaries of Your glorious heaven speak once again. May they be a spectacular display, one which immediately precedes the initial appearing of Your Son in such a way as to capture the attention of the entire earth. Yes, LORD, thank You for Joel 2, Acts 2, Matthew 24:29, 30 and Revelation 6:12, 13. Until that time, though, O LORD Most High, help Your children in Jesus Christ endure the upcoming war against Your Saints. May we indeed resolve to endure to the end during this most challenging time. And LORD, help Norma, Rebecca, Venita, Brett, Eric, Joy and Denny in their time of trial. In the holy name of Your Son, Christ Jesus we pray, amen.
4th Quarter Blogs
Week of 10/5-9 (B41;20)
Psalm 119:169-176 (NLT); Mark 13:28-37 (NKJV)
O LORD, listen to my cry; give me the discerning mind you promised. Listen to my prayer; rescue me as you promised. Let my lips burst forth with praise, for you have taught me your principles. Let my tongue sing about your word, for all your commands are right. Stand ready to help me, for I have chosen to follow your commandments. O LORD, I have longed for your salvation, and your law is my delight. Let me live so I can praise you, and may your laws sustain me. I have wandered away like a lost sheep; come and find me, for I have not forgotten your commands.
[ Jesus Christ speaking ] "Now learn this parable from the fig tree: When its branch has already become tender, and puts forth leaves, you know that summer is near. So you also, when you see these things happening, know that it is near - at the doors! Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all these things take place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away. But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. Take heed, watch and pray; for you do not know when the time is. It is like a man going to a far country, who left his house and gave authority to his servants, and to each his work, and commanded the door- keeper to watch. Watch, therefore, for you do not know when the master of the house is coming - in the evening, at midnight, at the crowing of the rooster, or in the morning - lest, coming suddenly, he find you sleeping. And what I say to you, I say to all: Watch!"
Gracious Heavenly Father, Your Counsel is so appreciated - thank You! May the portion of the Psalm above be our prayer. Thank You so for Your shepherding love for us. Please keep us on Your staight and narrow path as Your Son has so taught. Lord, may this be the generation which sees Your prophetic revelation come to pass. Give us eyes to behold the treasures in Your kind Counsel. May we balance our not knowing the day nor the hour with the Counsel of Your Son to be in a state of watchfulness. Guard us against ill-preparedness - sleepiness in these frog-in-the-kettle days. Help us discern the hour Lord. In Jesus Christ's name we pray: "Please come quickly Lord Jesus!"
O LORD, the God to whom vengeance belongs, O God of vengeance, let your glorious justice be seen! Arise, O judge of the earth. Sentence the proud to the penalties they deserve. How long, O LORD? How long will the wicked be allowed to gloat? Hear their arrogance! How these evildoers boast! They oppress your people, LORD, hurting those you love. They kill widows and foreigners and murder orphans. "The LORD isn't looking," they say, "and besides, the God of Israel doesn't care." Think again, you fools! When will you finally catch on?
Praise the LORD, all you nations. Praise him, all you people of the earth. For he loves us with unfailing love; the faithfulness of the LORD endures forever. Praise the LORD!
Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good! His faithful love endures forever. Let the congregation of Israel repeat: "His faithful love endures forever." Let Aaron's descendants, the priests, repeat: "His faithful love endures forever." Let all who fear the LORD repeat: "His faithful love endures forever." In my distress I prayed to the LORD, and the LORD answered me and rescued me. The LORD is for me, so I will not be afraid. What can mere mortals do to me? Yes, the LORD is for me; he will help me. I will look in triumph at those who hate me. It is better to trust the LORD than to put confidence in people. It is better to trust the LORD than to put confidence in princes.
Gracious Creator God. Have mercy on us, we pray. Thank You for Your Son who takes away the sin of the world. LORD, help those who are not in Your Son to accept Your loving care as expressed through His death and resurrection on our behalf. Help open their eyes to see the wonders of Your salvation. And, O LORD Most High, send judgment upon those who insist on evil, including the divisive politicians who contiue waging civil war against us. Silence them, O LORD, through means only You could extend whereby the world would have further reason to fear You. Silence them by softening their hearts; silence them through Your supernatural judgments; silence them by taking their very lives if it would serve Your righteous purposes. LORD, bring judgment upon those who murder orphans, including those who take the lives of the unborn. LORD, we pray for our enemies, asking Your will be done in their lives. And LORD, thank You for Your loving mercies. Indeed, Your faithful love endures forever. We praise Your holy name. In Jesus Christ's authoritative name I pray, amen.
Week of 10/19-23 (B43;20)
Psalm 99 (NLT)
The LORD is king! Let the nations tremble! He sits on his throne between the cherubim. Let the whole earth quake! The LORD sits in majesty in Jerusalem, supreme above all the nations. Let them praise your great and awesome name. Your name is holy! Mighty king, lover of justice, you have established fairness. You have acted with justice and righteousness throughout Israel. Exalt the LORD our God! Bow low before his feet, for he is holy! Moses and Aaron were among his priests; Samuel also called on his name. They cried to the LORD for help, and he answered them. He spoke to them from the pillar of cloud, and they followed the decrees and principles he gave them. O LORD our God, you answered them. You were a forgiving God, but you punished them when they went wrong. Exalt the LORD our God and worship at his holy mountain in Jerusalem, for the LORD our God is holy!
Holy heavenly Father, thank You for revealing to us Your standard of fairness! You alone are, from everlasting to ever- lasting, God. You sustain Your creation and are involved in the affairs of man. Thank You for helping us discern the evils of our day. May Your kind Word, as He indwells Your children in Christ by Your/His Holy Spirit, continue to guide us in these dark days. You are King. You are LORD. May we walk in Your footsteps while You were Immanuel. May we bow in humility before You. And THANK YOU LORD God for Your full glories. May we enjoy Your patient mercies while at the same time acknoweledge You punish Your own when we stray. May we accept Your Fatherly care when we need Your hand of discipline. May it lead us to turn from our erring ways; may Your Spirit guard our hearts against bitter response. We exalt You oh LORD God and worship at Your feet, for You are holy! In Jesus Christ's holy name we pray, amen.
Week of 10/26-30 (B44;20)
Psalm 100 (NLT)
Shout with joy to the LORD, O earth! Worship the LORD with gladness. Come before him, singing with joy. Acknow- ledge that the LORD is God! He made us, and we are his. We are his people, the sheep of his pasture. Enter his gates with thanksgiving; go into his courts with praise. Give thanks to him and bless his name. For the LORD is good. His un- failing love continues forever, and his faithfulness continues to each generation.
Holy heavenly Father, thank You for YOU! You alone are God Most High. We give You thanks and praise. We bless Your holy name. Lord, move dark America back to Your precious light. May we confess our apostasy, claim Your forgiveness and walk differently as a result of allowing You to govern our lives in our new-born state. Thank You for the glorious fruits of Your Spirit. May we thrive therein as we yeild to You and Your transcendent ways. Ultimately, LORD, may we do so for Your glory and praise. In Jesus Christ's holy name we pray, amen.
Week of 11/2-6 (B45;20)
Psalm 2 (NKJV)
Why do the nations rage, and the people plot a vain thing? The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the LORD and against His Annointed, saying, "Let us break Their bonds in pieces and cast away Their cords from us." He who sits in the heavens shall laugh; the LORD shall hold them in derision. Then He shall speak to them in His wrath, and distress them in His deep displeasure: "Yet I have set My King on My holy hill of Zion. I will declare the decree: The LORD has said to Me, 'You are My Son, today I have begotten You. Ask of Me, and I will give You the nations for Your inheritance, and the ends of the earth for You possession. You shall break them with a rod of iron; You shall dash them to pieces like a potter's vessel.'" Now therefore, be wise, O kings; be instructed, you judges of the earth. Serve the LORD with fear; and rejoice with trembling. Kiss the Son, lest He be angry, and you perish in the way, when His wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed are all those who put their trust in Him.
Precious Lord God Most High, we exalt You in these exciting days before Your Son's glorious initial appearing. Thank You that You're fully aware of the plots of men. Thank You for calling us to separate from the world and come out from it. We bow to Your plan for the ages - for Your upcoming humbling of man when You begin pouring out Your judgments and wrath. Lord, help us honor You during this time when You judge the earth. Help us not to fault You and slip into an apostate attitude. Help us put our trust in You. And LORD, open the eyes of the world leaders who experience the pressures to contribute to the building of the one world system. Help them see the big picture and realize that one day, darkness will overtake their global, secular, socialistic plans and then move on to bring in the time known by many as Daniel's 70th Week. Until that day, precious Father, may Your people in Jesus Christ Your Son abide in Your Vine and walk in Your Holy Spirit. In the holy name of Your Son, Jesus Christ we pray, amen.
Week of 11/9-13 (B46;20)
Psalm 117 & I Chron. 16:8-27 - note the context! (NKJV)
Praise the LORD, all you Gentiles! Laud Him, all you peoples! For His merciful kindness is great toward us, and the truth of the LORD endures forever. Praise the LORD!
Oh, give thanks to the LORD! Call upon His name; make known His deeds among the peoples! Sing to Him, sing psalms to Him; talk of all His wondrous works! Glory in His holy name; let the hearts of those rejoice who seek the LORD! Seek the LORD and His strength; seek His face evermore! Remember His marvelous works which He has done, His wonders, and the judgments of His mouth, O seed of Israel His servant, You children of Jacob, His chosen ones! He is the LORD our God; His judgments are in all the earth. Remember His covenant forever; the word which He commanded, for a thousand generations, the covenant which He made with Abraham, and His oath to Isaac, and confirmed it to Jacob for a statute, to Israel for an everlasting covenant, saying, "To you I will give the land of Canaan as the allotment of your inheritance," when you were few in number; indeed very few, and strangers in it. When they went from one nation to another; and from one kingdom to another people, He permitted no man to do them wrong; yes, He rebuked kings for their sakes, saying, "Do not touch My anointed ones, and do My prophets no harm." Sing to the LORD, all the earth; proclaim the good news of His salvation from day to day. Declare His glory among the nations, His wonders among all peoples. For the LORD is great and greatly to be praised; He is also to be feared above all gods. For all the gods of the peoples are idols, but the LORD made the heavens. Honor and majesty are before Him; strength and gladness are in His place.
Precious Lord Jesus, we honor You and in doing so, we honor our Heavenly Father - YHWH God Most High. Lord, thank You for Your amazing mercies - new every morning. Even so, please come quickly dear Shepherd of our souls. In Your glorious name we pray, amen.
Praise the LORD, all you Gentiles! Laud Him, all you peoples! For His merciful kindness is great toward us, and the truth of the LORD endures forever. Praise the LORD!
Sing to the LORD, all the earth; proclaim the good news of His salvation from day to day. Declare His glory among the nations, His wonders among all peoples. For the LORD is great and greatly to be praised; He is also to be feared above all gods. For all the gods of the peoples are idols, but the LORD made the heavens. Honor and majesty are before Him; strength and gladness are in His place. Give to the LORD, O families of the peoples, give to the LORD glory and strength. Give to the LORD the glory due His name; bring an offering, and come before Him. Oh, worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness! Tremble before Him, all the earth. The world also is firmly established, it shall not be moved. Let the heavens rejoice, and let the earth be glad; and let them say among the nations, "the LORD reigns." Let the sea roar, and all its fulness; let the field rejoice, and all that is in it. Then the trees of the woods shall rejoice before the LORD, for He is coming to judge the earth. Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever. And say, "Save us, O God of our salvation; gather us together, and deliver us from the Gentiles, to give thanks to Your holy name, to triumph in Your praise." Blessed be the LORD God of Israel from everlasting to everlasting! And all the people said, "Amen!" and praised the LORD.
Precious Lord Jesus, we honor You and in doing so, we honor our Heavenly Father - YHWH God Most High. Lord, thank You for Your amazing mercies - new every morning. Even so, please come quickly dear Shepherd of our souls. Gather us up together* as You have promised in Mt. 24:31 and I Thes. 2. In Your glorious name we pray, amen.
Out of the depths I have cried to You, O LORD; Lord, hear my voice! Let Your ears be attentive to the voice of my supplications. If You, LORD, should mark iniquities, O Lord, who could stand? But there is forgiveness with You, that You may be feared. I wait for the LORD, my soul waits, and in His word I do hope. My soul waits for the Lord more than those who watch for the morning - Yes, more than those who watch for morning. O Israel, hope in the LORD; for with the LORD there is mercy, and with Him is abundant redemption. And He shall redeem Israel from all his iniquities.
Precious Holy Father, glory to Your name. We exalt You during this sweet Thanksgiving Season. Thank You for Your redemtive plan for mankind under the eternal New Covenant in Jesus Christ Your Son. O Church, hope in the LORD; for with the LORD there is mercy, and with Him thereis abundant redemp- tion. Lord God, You shall redeem all mankind from their iniquities, for those who come to You and humbly accept Your provision of forgiveness of sin through Christ Jesus our Savior. God, You alone are Savior. Thank You for Your wonderful Son. Even so, please come quickly Lord Jesus. Amen
Week of 11/30 - 12/4 (B49;20)
Please read (from a hard copy) the book of Lamentations (in the Bible).
Now that you've (hopefully) done so, please read a hard copy version of Daniel chapter 9.
Note how these two testimonies have similarities - in multiple respects.
Now read, from a hard copy,* Psalm 32.
Contemporary America (USA) is also depicted in both Lamentations and Daniel 9.
Will we repent of our own sins and enjoy the blessings which come when we turn from our wicked ways ? (see II Chronicles 7:12-22)
IF we do so, we, too, will enjoy the Lord's mercy and, like Jeremiah, could also respond in like manner to that of Lamentations 3:21:
"This [what's written in context] I recall to my mind, therefore I have hope [in light of what follows this 21st verse]."
IF we repent and turn from our rebellion against God, we, too, will enjoy the Lord's mercy and find ourselves better relating to Daniel's cry (in Daniel 9:14-19).
Encouraging application ...
Will we humble ourselves and repent and forsake evil ways ? IF we do so, King David's testimony in Psalm 32 could also be our experience.
OR will we persist in our hard-hearted stubbornness, a pride-based expression depicted, in one way, in Jeremiah 6:16ff ?
* Question: Don't have a hard copy of God's Word? Our response: Care to secure a free copy? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for details. We'll send you a free copy if you would but help us with mailing costs.
Week of 12/7-11 (B50;20)
Psalm 144 (NKJV)
Blessed be the LORD my Rock, who trains my hands for war, and my fingers for battle - my lovingkindness and my fortress, my high tower and my deliverer, my shield and the One in whom I take refuge, who subdues my people under me. LORD, what is man, that You take knowledge of him? Or the son of man, that You are mindful of him? Man is like a breath; his days are like a passing shadow. Bow down Your heavens, O LORD, and come down; touch the moun- tains, and they shall smoke. Flash forth lighning and scatter them; shoot out Your arrows and destroy them. Stretch out Your hand from above; rescue me and deliver me out of great waters, from the hand of foreigners, whose mouth speak lying words, and whose right hand is a right hand of false- hood. I will sing a new song to You, O God; on a harp of ten strings I will sing praises to You, the One who gives salvation to kings, who delivers David His servant from the deadly sword. Rescue me and deliver me from the hand of foreigners, whose mouth speaks lying words, and whose right hand is a right hand of falsehood - that our sons may be as plants grown up in their youth; that our daughters may be as pillars, sculp- tured in palace style; that our barns may be full, supplying all kinds of produce; that our sheep may bring forth thousands and ten thousands in our fields; that our oxen may be well laden; that there be no breaking in or going out; that there be no outcry in our streets. Happy are the people who are in such a state; happy are the people whose God is the LORD!
LORD God, under the authority of Your eternal New Covenant, we pray this prayer of King David. We pray for our enemies - that they would repent of their actions as a result of being satan's slaves. LORD God, soften their hearts to the point of receiving Your glorious salvation in Jesus Christ Your Son, the One in whom You were, and are, well pleased. LORD, deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory, forever and ever. In Christ Jesus name we pray, amen.
Week of 12/14-18 (B51;20)
Psalm 145 (NKJV)
I will extol You, my God, O King; and I will bless Your name forever and ever. Every day I will bless You, and I will praise Your name forever and ever. Great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised; and His greatness is unsearchable. One generation shall praise Your works to another, and shall declare Your mighty acts. I will meditate on the glorious splendor of Your majesty, and on Your wondrous works. Men shall speak of the might of Your awesome acts, and I will declare Your greatness. They shall utter the memory of Your great goodness, and shall sing of Your righteousness. The LORD is gracious and full of compassion, slow to anger and great in mercy. The LORD is good to all, and His tender mercies are over all His works. All Your works shall praise You, O LORD, and Your saints shall bless You. They shall speak of the glory of Your kingdom, and talk of Your power, to make known to the sons of men His mighty acts, and the glorious majesty of His kingdom. Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and Your dominion endures throughout all generations The LORD upholds all who fall, and raises up all who are bowed down. The eyes of all look expectantly to You, and You give them their food in due season. You open Your hand and satisfy the desire of every living thing. The LORD is righteous in all His ways, gracious in all His works. The LORD is near to all who call upon Him, to all who call upon Him in truth. He will fulfill the desire of those who fear Him; He also will hear their cry and save them. The LORD preserves all who love Him, but all the wicked He will destroy. My mouth shall speak the praise of the LORD, and all flesh shall bless His holy name forever and ever.
Prayer: Pray this Psalm to the Lord. In some verses, minor adjustment are needed. Some include:
vs.3 "Great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised; and His greatness is unsearchable."
Prayer: Great are You, Oh LORD, and greatly to be praised. Your greatness is unsearchable.
vv.8, 9 "The LORD is gracious and full of compassion, slow to anger and great in mercy. The LORD is good to all, and His tender mercies are over all His works."
Prayer: You, Oh LORD, are gracious and full of com- passion - slow to anger and great in mercy. You, Oh LORD, are good to all - Your tender mercies are over all Your works.
vs. 14 "The LORD upholds all who fall, and raises up all who are bowed down."
Prayer: Oh LORD, You uphold all who fall, and You raise up all who are bowed down.
Blessed be Thou, oh LORD our God, King of the universe. In Jesus Christ's name we pray, amen.
Week of 12/21-25 (B52;20)
Psalm 146 (NKJV)
Praise the LORD! Praise the LORD, O my soul! While I live I will praise the LORD; I will sing praises to my God while I have my being. Do not put your trust in princes, nor in a son of man, in whom there is no help. His spirit departs, he returns to his earth; in that very day his plans perish. Happy is he who has the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in the LORD his God, who made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them; who keeps truth forever, who executes justice for the oppressed, who gives food to the hungry. The LORD gives freedom to the prisoners. The LORD opens the eyes of the blind; the LORD raises those who are bowed down; the LORD loves the righteous. The LORD watches over the strangers; he relieves the fatherless and widow; but the way of the wicked He turns upside down. The LORD shall reign forever - your God, O Zion, to all generations. Praise the LORD!
Father - God of glory, God of grace - blessed and joyful are those who Hope in You, for You are trustworthy. Thank You for being Truth, forever Truth. Thank You for bringing justice to the oppressed. Thank You for delivering us from dark bondages. Lord, please open our blind eyes; uplift Your broken people. Thank You for allowing us peace knowing You will, one day, repay the wicked. Lord God, You reign forever. We praise You dear Lord God Most High. Thank You for Immanuel - God with us. Lord Jesus, thank You for being willing to come and save mankind from the clutches of satan. In Christ Jesus' holy name we pray, amen.
O Holy Night*
O holy night, the stars are brightly shining, It is the night of the dear Saviour's birth; Long lay the world in sin and error pining, 'Till he appeared and the soul felt its worth. A thrill of hope - the weary world rejoices, For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn;
Fall on your knees, Oh hear the angel voices! O night divine! O night when Christ was born. O night, O holy night, O night divine.
Led by the light of Faith serenely beaming; With glowing hearts by his cradle we stand: So, led by light of a star sweetly gleaming, Here come the wise men from Orient land, The King of kings lay thus in lowly manger, In all our trials born to be our friend;
He knows our need, to our weakness no stranger! Behold your King! Before Him lowly bend! Behold your King - your King before him bend!
Truly He taught us to love one another; His law of love and His gospel is peace; Chains shall he break, for the slave is our brother, And in his name all oppression shall cease, Sweet hymns of joy in grateful chorus raise we; Let all within us praise His holy name!
Christ is the Lord, then ever! ever praise we! His pow'r and glory, evermore proclaim! His pow'r and glory, evermore proclaim!
* Lyrics to O Holy Night by Adolphe Adam (1847) (Thank you Linda!)
Week of 12/28 - 1/1 (B53;20)
Praise To God Most High
Praise the LORD! Praise God in His sanctuary; praise Him in His mighty firmament! Praise God for His mighty acts; praise Him according to His excellent greatness! Praise Him with the sound of the trumpet; praise Him with the lute and harp! Praise Him with the timbrel and dance; praise Him with stringed instruments and flutes! Praise Him with loud cymbals; praise Him with clashing cymbals! Let everything that has breath praise the LORD. Praise the LORD! Psalm 150 (NKJV)
After praying Psalm 150 in reverent praise ... Lord, as this year of trouble and unrest comes to a close, we acknowledge You as holy God. Thank You for extending Your hand of discipline on a rebellious world - all toward the end of hoping for repentance. Lord, may Your people humbly and sincerely repent. Lord, Your people praise Your name. Thank You for Immanuel. Our Savior has come and will be returning again soon. We praise You oh LORD! In Jesus Christ's holy name we pray, amen.
I Stand In Awe *
You are beautiful beyond description Too marvelous for words Too wonderful for comprehension Like nothing ever seen or heard Who can grasp Your infinite wisdom? Who can fathom the depth of Your love? You are beautiful beyond description Majesty, enthroned above
And I stand, I stand in awe of You I stand, I stand in awe of You Holy God, to whom all praise is due I stand in awe of You
You are beautiful beyond description Yet God cruched You for my sin In agony and deep affliction Cut off that I might enter in Who can grasp such tender compassion? Who can fathom this mercy so free? You are beautiful beyond description Lamb of God who died for me
And I stand, I stand in awe of You I stand, I stand in awe of You Holy God, to whom all praise is due I stand in awe of You