Day

296
Oct 23

Suffering and Glory

Start by reading… Psalms 38 and 39 seem quite negative, and David was clearly going through a difficult time. However, he rises above his circumstances, saying: “For in You, O Lord, I hope…” (Psalms 38:15) and “…Lord, where do I put my hope? My only hope is in you” (Psalms 39:7). I recently heard a talk about … Continued

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295
Oct 22

What About the Unrighteous?

Have you ever looked at other people and questioned why God allows them to seemingly get away with living immoral lifestyles? Perhaps you have witnessed shady dealings with money or inappropriate relationships, and for a time, these people seem to prosper and even appear to be blessed?

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294
Oct 21

Having a Hard Time?

We would do well to meditate on such lofty truth because the impact of these verses cannot be grasped without much pondering. The problem is, when we are having a hard time, we often seek our own answers, we long for a celebrity style, “get me out of here!” moment, instead of carefully applying God’s truth, ways and character to our sturggles. 

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293
Oct 20

Faith Accounted for Righteousness!

Start by reading… I adore the book of Romans. I especially love the beginning of Romans 5, where Paul states that we all want to be “right in God’s sight” and “have peace with God” (see Romans 5:1). We are told in the same verse that this was accomplished by the amazing work of Jesus on the cross. … Continued

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292
Oct 19

Justice or Mercy?

Start by reading…Romans 2:2 says: “And we know that God, in his justice, will punish anyone who does such things.” A common theme runs through our readings today. If we sin, we face God’s judgement; both under the old and the new covenant. God rewards righteousness and punishes sin, but as we are all sinners, how can … Continued

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291
Oct 18

‘What is Sin?’

Start by reading… When I read the latter part of Romans 1 again recently, I realised that the age in which Paul lived wasn’t too dissimilar to our world today in terms of people’s refusal to acknowledge God and desire to live for themselves. The consequences are revealed in the list written by the Apostle … Continued

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290
Oct 17

The Never Ending Story?

Start by reading… Luke’s two-volume account of Jesus and the early Church draws to a close in Acts 28. Contemporary sources (not in the Bible) suggest that Paul wrote many of his letters to the churches while he was under house arrest. Paul was acquitted and continued his missionary travels until AD 67, when he … Continued

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289
Oct 16

Beauty Is More Than Skin Deep

Start by reading… The urban proverb says that: “Beauty is only skin deep.” In the context of a pleasing appearance being no indication of character, this is true. In fact, as a teenager I found the words of Proverbs 11:22 (KJV) very amusing: “As a jewel of gold in a swine’s snout, so is a fair woman which is … Continued

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288
Oct 15

Trials Bring Opportunities

Start by reading… Acts 25 reminds us that Paul’s bold preaching took the gospel to people he could only reach through hardship. Many were angered, and Paul faced prison many times for his bold stand. While incarcerated, he had the opportunity to give his testimony to people he would not ordinarily have been able to reach. … Continued

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287
Oct 14

“O Lord, I Give My Life to You”

Start by reading… Psalm 25:1 quite simply reads: “O Lord, I give my life to you.” I don’t know about you, but I love doing my best to plunge into the depths of the deep teachings of the Bible. I love trying to grasp the many mysteries and learn from the great teachers of the … Continued

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286
Oct 13

Discipline Is Good for You

Start by reading… I was always in trouble at school and remember receiving the cane for climbing a tree in the school grounds. At seven years of age, I discovered Boys’ Brigade at a local Methodist Church just down the road from my house. I can safely say that it changed the course of my … Continued

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285
Oct 12

Glimpses of the Cross in a Psalm

Start by reading… I think Psalm 22 is wonderful. Even though it was written approximately one thousand years before Jesus died on the cross, it describes in detail His sacrifice for each one of us. It speaks of a man who cries out to God from a place of intense persecution, surrounded by those who scorn … Continued

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284
Oct 11

Seek First the Kingdom

Start by reading… Proverbs 11 is mainly concerned with justice. The godly and ungodly are compared, along with their God-ordained outcomes. This passage also has much to do with stewardship of our money. Proverbs 11:24 says: “Give freely and become more wealthy; be stingy and lose everything.” Proverbs 11:25 says: “The generous will prosper; those … Continued

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283
Oct 10

“Therefore Watch, and Remember”

Start by reading… Acts 20:31 (KJV) says: “Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears.” A young missionary was about to depart on a long journey to reach the nations for Christ. His mother gave him a family photo and … Continued

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282
Oct 09

Emmanuel, God with Us

Start by reading… After attending Bible class for two years, I was presented with a beautiful Bible. As a teenager, I have to admit that two things made the compulsory evening church service bearable. One was the lift given by my Bible class leader on his AJS motorbike; the other was studying the three colourful … Continued

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281
Oct 08

Upside Down!

Start by reading… In Acts 17, we are told that Paul went to the synagogue. Paul’s aim was always to start by trying to reason with people from the scriptures. The Greek word translated into ‘reasoned’ is the root of our English word, ‘dialogue’. It involved an exchange; questions and answers. I wonder if we … Continued

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280
Oct 07

Led Away by the Holy Spirit

Start by reading… Acts 16:7 says: “…but again the Spirit of Jesus did not allow them to go there.” A week from today I’ll be on the mission field. I could say that these preparation weeks are filled with calm reflection, but, honestly, they constitute my most stressful and humbling experiences. As my two worlds … Continued

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279
Oct 06

Your Life Is Your Loudest Testimony

Start by reading…Proverbs 6:20 says: “My son, obey your father’s commands, and don’t neglect your mother’s instruction.” I remember reading verses like this as a daughter. I learned some very good lessons from my parents. This, together with their prayers, kept me safe from all kinds of trouble. I know that not everyone gets to have … Continued

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278
Oct 05

Keep Listening to the Good News!

Start by reading… God’s good news is truly life-changing. In Acts 14:7, we read that Paul and Barnabas preached the good news of the gospel of Jesus. It says their message was true and that God gave it a great endorsement by following up with signs and wonders. Simply speaking the gospel is life-changing. We … Continued

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277
Oct 04

Oxygen for the Soul

Start by reading… Acts 13:15 says: “…if you have any word of encouragement for the people, come and give it.” In Acts 13:1-3, the Holy Spirit sets Barnabas and Saul apart for a missionary journey to Cyprus and Galatia. Notice the order of names: Barnabas and Saul. When they arrive in Paphos, the governor invites … Continued

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276
Oct 03

Finding Wisdom

Start by reading…Proverbs 3:13-15 says: “Joyful is the person who finds wisdom, the one who gains understanding. For wisdom is more profitable than silver, and her wages are better than gold. Wisdom is more precious than rubies; nothing you desire can compare with her.” To obtain godly wisdom, we first need a right attitude. Psalm 111:10 says: … Continued

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275
Oct 02

Living with Purpose

Start by reading… Acts 11:23 says: “When he arrived and saw this evidence of God’s blessing, he was filled with joy, and he encouraged the believers to stay true to the Lord.” If you were asked to complete the sentence: “My purpose in life is…” what would you say? As Christians, most of us would quickly … Continued

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274
Oct 01

Gather, Grow and Serve!

Today we read the story of Cornelius and his interactions with Peter and how the gentiles received the gift of the Holy Spirit. Cornelius is widely accepted as being the first gentile convert to Christianity.

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273
Sep 30

Supernatural and Spectacular, or Simply Supernatural?

Start by reading… In Acts 9, we read the spectacularly supernatural account of Saul’s conversion. The great light and God’s audible voice certainly got Saul’s attention! What a transformation, from actively seeking to destroy the Church to becoming one of its greatest proponents, the ‘Apostle’ Paul! I use the words ‘spectacular’ (sensational, stunning, dramatic, unforgettable) … Continued

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272
Sep 29

While I Live

Start by reading… The final chapters of psalms are a delightful mountain climb of praise, inviting us to bring boisterous praise. When King David brought the Ark of the Lord back to Jerusalem, he stopped every six paces to bring offerings, including dancing with all his might. The company of thousands came into the city … Continued

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271
Sep 28

Religion Is Dead!

Start by reading… In Acts 7, Stephen relays the history of the Jewish people. He stands before the Council of the Jews, brought there on false, trumped-up charges of blasphemy from false witnesses. We know from Acts 6:8 that Stephen was “a man full of God’s grace and power, [who] performed amazing miracles and signs among … Continued

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270
Sep 27

Holy Spirit Wisdom

Start by reading… I was sitting in a coffee shop recently and politely turned to a couple of older ladies who appeared to be enjoying an afternoon together. As a visitor, I told them I found their town beautiful. As a more meaningful conversation opened up, I soon realised they had only recently met. One … Continued

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269
Sep 26

Don’t Be a Dog!

I love the book of Proverbs; in fact in my personal devotions I rotate it every month and try to meditate on one particular statement from each chapter every day.  The wisdom contained in this ancient text certainly still speaks relevantly to us.  In our chapter today, it says this;

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268
Sep 25

Look at Us

Start by reading… Acts 3:4 says: “Peter and John looked at him intently, and Peter said, “Look at us!” Here was this man waiting at the gate of the temple. The striking thing is that when he asked Peter for money, Peter stopped and said, “Look at us.” Surely we shouldn’t ask people to look at us? … Continued

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267
Sep 24

The Event and the Everyday

Start by reading… Acts 2 is packed full of adventure, excitement and game-changing moments: the Holy Spirit bringing tongues of fire, powerful preaching from Peter and three thousand people coming to know Jesus. It’s so incredible! We love these big moments. In fact, many people live for them. Let’s pray that we have more big … Continued

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266
Sep 23

God’s Purpose for Us: Worship, Witness, Discipleship

Start by reading… Psalm 135 reminds us to praise God. Why? Because He is good, great and sovereign over all events in the world and in our personal lives! He is powerful, generous, everlasting and compassionate. Psalm 135:3 tells us it is pleasant to sing praise. It lifts our spirits and is a great antidote to depression! … Continued

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265
Sep 22

Have You Seen the Lord?

There is something more important than any plan that we can make as human beings, and that is seeing the Lord Jesus for who He really is. Have you seen Him as He really is?

Day

264
Sep 21

The Lord Bless You Out of Zion

Start by reading… These wonderful psalms were sung by the Jewish people visiting the temple at the Feasts of the Lord. Today is Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish new year. It is often referred to as the Feast of Trumpets, where the shofar (ram’s horn) is blown. It marks a time of deep repentance in the ten … Continued

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263
Sep 20

Do You Have a Spa?

Start by reading… In John 18, we read the disciples’ account of Jesus’ betrayal and arrest, the high priest’s questioning and His trial, not to mention Peter’s denials as Jesus’ sentencing and crucifixion are imminent. But right at the beginning of this chapter, we read: “…Jesus crossed the Kidron Valley with His disciples and entered … Continued

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262
Sep 19

Your Word Is Truth!

Start by reading… John 17:17 says: “Make them holy by your truth; teach them your word, which is truth.” This is one of the greatest recorded prayers in the Bible, because it reflects the heart of Jesus. Please note that it is directed to God the Father. In the words of this prayer, we see … Continued

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261
Sep 18

The City of God

Start by reading… Psalm 122 is a song of ascent that worshippers sang as they ascended the hill to Jerusalem for the annual festivals. Jesus almost certainly sang this psalm when He went to the festivals. I find it puzzling that many Christians today believe the Church has replaced Israel (known as replacement theology). However, … Continued

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260
Sep 17

Belonging When You Don’t Belong!

Start by reading… John 15 shows us an incredible truth. Jesus is teaching His disciples; not only with knowledge and experience, but with His heart. He doesn’t just leave them with information and instruction, but imparts hope into their lives. Even though His mind is focused on the cross that awaits Him, He still takes time … Continued

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259
Sep 16

Something Better than Gaviscon

Start by reading… John 14:1 says: “Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me.” Jesus knew what was going on in their hearts and minds. He knew how disturbed and upset they were, and what was causing their turmoil. Many of us suffer the same affliction as these disciples: troubled, … Continued

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258
Sep 15

A Demonstration of Perfect Love

Start by reading…I once heard a great saying: “You can easily judge the character of a man by the way he treats those who can do nothing for him.” In John 13:1-11, we read the account of Jesus washing His disciples’ feet. Although I have never attended one, I have heard of churches that practise foot-washing, … Continued

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257
Sep 14

The Word of God is Powerful

Start by reading… Twenty years ago, I served in a small local church. The pastor underwent many months of cancer treatment, and then developed heart problems. He ended up having a triple bypass. The church leadership struggled with the pastor’s long absence and the family was understandably distraught. A number of visiting speakers came, and … Continued