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Devotional2018-09-28T23:40:26+08:00

27 September 2019 -1 Peter 3:15-16 (NIV)

Scripture

15 But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, 16 keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.

Reflection

What a timely encouragement and reminder that we should always be ready to explain our faith. We don’t have to be expert apologists nor do we have to be experts in what other religions teach; we simply need to know what we believe as Christians and be able to explain it to those who ask us about our faith. Of course, this is going to require something from us, to spend the time to understand the basic principles of our faith to the level we are comfortable talking to others on this same subject. Do you know what you believe? Do you know why you believe? If you are not sure there are many great resources here are two classics by Paul Little, Know What You Believe and Know Why You Believe.

Thoughts for the day

  • What does this passage tell you about God or Jesus?
  • What does this passage tell you about humanity?
  • What do you feel God is telling you through this passage?
  • How can you apply this message in an area of your life that needs transformation?
  • Is there anyone you think should hear or will benefit from this message? Go and tell them.

Prayer

Pray the Lord’s Prayer:

“OUR FATHER IN HEAVEN, HALLOWED BE YOUR NAME, YOUR KINGDOM COME, YOUR WILL BE DONE, ON EARTH AS IT IS IN HEAVEN. GIVE US TODAY OUR DAILY BREAD. AND FORGIVE US OUR DEBTS, AS WE ALSO HAVE FORGIVEN OUR DEBTORS. AND LEAD US NOT INTO TEMPTATION, BUT DELIVER US FROM THE EVIL ONE.

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By |September 27th, 2019|Categories: Week 4|

26 September 2019 -Luke 7:19-22 (NIV)

Scripture

33 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

Reflection

Maybe Jesus said this because he knew that we would stumble over him. Jesus claimed an authority that was “off putting” for some people. Whether he was forgiving some one of sins they had committed against another person, over-riding religious protocol, referring to God as his Father or making exclusive truth claims like, “I am the way, the truth and life, no one comes to the Father except through me”; it bothered people. For some, like John, the “stumbling over Jesus” perhaps had to do with a disappointment. Jesus is able to see the possibility of the stumble and give a blessing to those who manage to “stay on their feet” in order to receive Him.

Thoughts for the day

  • What does this passage tell you about God or Jesus?
  • What does this passage tell you about humanity?
  • What do you feel God is telling you through this passage?
  • How can you apply this message in an area of your life that needs transformation?
  • Is there anyone you think should hear or will benefit from this message? Go and tell them.

Prayer

Pray through your contacts! Open the contacts on your phone and pray for everyone under the letter “A” or “Z”. Work through your entire contact list over the next couple of months!

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By |September 26th, 2019|Categories: Week 4|

25 September 2019 -Acts 17:22-23 (NIV)

Scripture

22 Paul then stood up in the meeting of the Areopagus and said: “People of Athens! I see that in every way you are very religious. 23 For as I walked around and looked carefully at your objects of worship, I even found an altar with this inscription: to an unknown god. So you are ignorant of the very thing you worship—and this is what I am going to proclaim to you.

Reflection

When Paul came to Athens he was by himself. It doesn’t say how long he was there before he was invited to be a guest lecturer at the famed Areopagus but when he opened his mouth it was obvious that he had learned much about his host city. He takes note of their religious nature; they even have an idol to an “unknown” God. They are worshiping, they are religious and have recognized that God cannot be contained in a temple. He could have easily said something like, “Close enough” and begged off. It’s not enough to be close to the Kingdom of Christ, one must be told about Jesus and invited to believe on His name.

Thoughts for the day

  • What does this passage tell you about God or Jesus?
  • What does this passage tell you about humanity?
  • What do you feel God is telling you through this passage?
  • How can you apply this message in an area of your life that needs transformation?
  • Is there anyone you think should hear or will benefit from this message? Go and tell them.

Prayer

Give God your time. Look ahead at your schedule for the next 24 hours. When can you give God 10 minutes of your time (or more) to rest in his presence and to be still. Maybe it’s right now?

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By |September 25th, 2019|Categories: Week 4|

24 September 2019 -Titus 1:9 (NIV)

Scripture

He must hold firmly to the trustworthy message as it has been taught, so that he can encourage others by sound doctrine and refute those who oppose it.

Reflection

There is an old story which describes the training of bank tellers. Some people would come into the bank with counterfeit money attempting to exchange it for “real” money. The tellers were not trained to recognize the false as much as they were trained to recognize and be familiar with the “real” Here, potential elders had to know the “true” message of the gospel from the false. The more we know of the true nature and person of Jesus the more likely we will be able to recognize a teaching that is “off” the mark.

Thoughts for the day

  • What does this passage tell you about God or Jesus?
  • What does this passage tell you about humanity?
  • What do you feel God is telling you through this passage?
  • How can you apply this message in an area of your life that needs transformation?
  • Is there anyone you think should hear or will benefit from this message? Go and tell them.

Prayer

Give God your praise. Give God your praise for the good things you are experiencing and practice gratitude for everything God’s given you at this present moment.

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By |September 24th, 2019|Categories: Week 4|

23 September 2019 -Jude 1:3 (NIV)

Scripture

Dear friends, although I was very eager to write to you about the salvation we share, I felt compelled to write and urge you to contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to God’s holy people.

Reflection

The gospel is often presented as something easy; easy to understand, easy to receive. “Believe in the Lord Jesus and you will be saved” (Acts 16:31) Here we are told that Christians must “contend”, i.e. work very hard for the faith. This does not mean to volunteer often and much (“work hard on behalf of Christian faith”) but to work hard to ensure the faith we have is Christian, the faith of the apostles who received it, the faith we have come to believe by the Word of God and in Jesus. Others will try and mess this up for us, we must know what we believe and why we believe it.

Thoughts for the day

  • What does this passage tell you about God or Jesus?
  • What does this passage tell you about humanity?
  • What do you feel God is telling you through this passage?
  • How can you apply this message in an area of your life that needs transformation?
  • Is there anyone you think should hear or will benefit from this message? Go and tell them.

Prayer

Wherever you are, take time to acknowledge God and trust in Him again. Give God your worries. Take a moment to give each thing you are worrying about back to God.

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By |September 23rd, 2019|Categories: Week 4|

20 September 2019 -John 16:33 (NIV)

Scripture

33 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

Reflection

In this passage, Jesus is encouraging His disciples to trust God’s sovereignty.  In this verse (and in the preceding verse 16:32), Jesus tells His disciples that they will experience hardships:  they will be scattered, they will abandon Jesus, and they will ‘have trouble in this world.’  But Jesus is not encouraging them by saying He will somehow prevent hard things from happening in their lives, but rather He is saying that even in those hardships, there is peace in knowledge that Jesus has overcome the world!

The mature believer knows that following Christ does not mean life will be easy.  To the contrary, we live in a broken and fallen world, and we will experience many awful things: rejection, disappointment, disease, poverty, and even the deaths of loved ones.

But Jesus tells us: take heart!  Our hope is not in our circumstances.  Our faith is not in the things of this world – our jobs, finances, social circles, or even family members.  We trust Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior, above all.  And in that trust, we can – somehow – find a “peace that surpasses all understanding” during the darkest times of our lives.

Thoughts for the day

  • What does this passage tell you about God or Jesus?
  • What does this passage tell you about humanity?
  • What do you feel God is telling you through this passage?
  • How can you apply this message in an area of your life that needs transformation?
  • Is there anyone you think should hear or will benefit from this message? Go and tell them.

Prayer

Pray for revelation: ask God to show you something of His character, presence or beauty where you are now.

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By |September 20th, 2019|Categories: Week 3|