HE IS RISEN!

"For at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord."
  • Solid Joys John Piper
  • Daily Devotional InTouch Ministries
  • Daily Bible Grace To You
  • Strength For Today Grace To You
  • Drawing Near Grace To You
  • Daily Readings Grace To You
  • Morning Devotion C.H. Spurgeon
  • Evening Devotion C.H. Spurgeon

The Power of a Superior Promise

Published by John Piper for reading on September 27th.

I shall walk in freedom, for I have sought your precepts. ( Psalms 119:45 45 And I shall walk at liberty; For I have sought thy precepts. , my translation)

An essential element of joy is freedom. None of us would be happy if we were not free from what we hate and free for what we love.

And where do we find true freedom? Psalms 119:45 45 And I shall walk at liberty; For I have sought thy precepts. says, “I shall walk in freedom, for I have sought your precepts.”

The picture is one of open spaces. The word frees us from smallness of mind ( 1 Kings 4:29 29 And God gave Solomon wisdom and understanding exceeding much, and largeness of heart, even as the sand that is on the sea-shore. ) and from threatening confinements ( Psalms 18:19 19 He brought me forth also into a large place; He delivered me, because he delighted in me. ).

Jesus says, “You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” ( John 8:32 32 and ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. ). The freedom he has in mind is freedom from the slavery of sin ( John 8:34 34 Jesus answered them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Every one that committeth sin is the bondservant of sin. ). Or, to put it positively, it is freedom for holiness.

The promises of God’s grace provide the power that makes the demands of God’s holiness an experience of freedom rather than fear. Peter described the freeing power of God’s promises like this: “Through [his precious and very great promises] you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire” ( 2 Peter 1:4 4 whereby he hath granted unto us his precious and exceeding great promises; that through these ye may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in that world by lust. ).

In other words, when we trust the promises of God, we sever the root of corruption by the power of a superior promise.

How crucial is the word that breaks the power of counterfeit pleasures! And how vigilant we should be to light our paths and load our hearts with the word of God!

“Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path” ( Psalms 119:105 105 NUN. Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, And light unto my path. ). “I have stored up your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you” ( Psalms 119:11 11 Thy word have I laid up in my heart, That I might not sin against thee. ; cf. verse 9).



Using a Wrong Approach

Published by InTouch Ministries for reading on September 27th.

Genesis 3:1-8 Chapter 3 1 Now the serpent was more subtle than any beast of the field which Jehovah God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of any tree of the garden? 2 And the woman said unto the serpent, Of the fruit of the trees of the garden we may eat: 3 but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die. 4 And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: 5 for God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as God, knowing good and evil. 6 And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat; and she gave also unto her husband with her, and he did eat. 7 And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig-leaves together, and made themselves aprons. 8 And they heard the voice of Jehovah God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of Jehovah God amongst the trees of the garden.

The Lord promises to supply our needs, but that means in His way and time frame. There might be temptations to take a wrong approach, so we must be careful not to push ahead of God or follow a route that leads away from Him.

Some people think their security rests in bank accounts, prestige, other people, or possessions. This can lead to becoming a workaholic who sacrifices relationships for financial gain. Or it could tempt someone to engage in unethical activities. In contrast, by basing our life on the security we have in Christ, we will have peace of mind and heart.

Another unhealthy way to meet our needs involves looking for companionship outside of God’s established boundaries. We may find temporary excitement in an inappropriate relationship, but in the end, that road brings pain and disappointment.

The enemy wants us to provide for ourselves in a way that is independent of God and out of line with His will. Satan deceived Adam and Eve by implying that the Lord was keeping some important information from them; he suggested that his course of action, not the Creator’s, would make them wise. The first man and woman exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and it cost them dearly. If we allow wrong thinking to direct our actions, we get ourselves into a lot of trouble, too.

It’s important to understand what we have received through our relationship with Jesus. Learning to depend on Him will help us avoid wrong approaches to getting what we need.

Bible in One Year: Habakkuk 1-3 Chapter 1 1 The burden which Habakkuk the prophet did see. 2 O Jehovah, how long shall I cry, and thou wilt not hear? I cry out unto thee of violence, and thou wilt not save. 3 Why dost thou show me iniquity, and look upon perverseness? for destruction and violence are before me; and there is strife, and contention riseth up. 4 Therefore the law is slacked, and justice doth never go forth; for the wicked doth compass about the righteous; therefore justice goeth forth perverted. 5 Behold ye among the nations, and look, and wonder marvellously; for I am working a work in your days, which ye will not believe though it be told you. 6 For, lo, I raise up the Chaldeans, that bitter and hasty nation, that march through the breadth of the earth, to possess dwelling-places that are not theirs. 7 They are terrible and dreadful; their judgment and their dignity proceed from themselves. 8 Their horses also are swifter than leopards, and are more fierce than the evening wolves; and their horsemen press proudly on: yea, their horsemen come from far; they fly as an eagle that hasteth to devour. 9 They come all of them for violence; the set of their faces is forwards; and they gather captives as the sand. 10 Yea, he scoffeth at kings, and princes are a derision unto him; he derideth every stronghold; for he heapeth up dust, and taketh it. 11 Then shall he sweep by `as' a wind, and shall pass over, and be guilty, `even' he whose might is his god. 12 Art not thou from everlasting, O Jehovah my God, my Holy One? we shall not die. O Jehovah, thou hast ordained him for judgment; and thou, O Rock, hast established him for correction. 13 Thou that art of purer eyes than to behold evil, and that canst not look on perverseness, wherefore lookest thou upon them that deal treacherously, and holdest thy peace when the wicked swalloweth up the man that is more righteous than he; 14 and makest men as the fishes of the sea, as the creeping things, that have no ruler over them? 15 He taketh up all of them with the angle, he catcheth them in his net, and gathereth them in his drag: therefore he rejoiceth and is glad. 16 Therefore he sacrificeth unto his net, and burneth incense unto his drag; because by them his portion is fat, and his food plenteous. 17 Shall he therefore empty his net, and spare not to slay the nations continually? Chapter 2 1 I will stand upon my watch, and set me upon the tower, and will look forth to see what he will speak with me, and what I shall answer concerning my complaint. 2 And Jehovah answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon tablets, that he may run that readeth it. 3 For the vision is yet for the appointed time, and it hasteth toward the end, and shall not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not delay. 4 Behold, his soul is puffed up, it is not upright in him; but the righteous shall live by his faith. 5 Yea, moreover, wine is treacherous, a haughty man, that keepeth not at home; who enlargeth his desire as Sheol, and he is as death, and cannot be satisfied, but gathereth unto him all nations, and heapeth unto him all peoples. 6 Shall not all these take up a parable against him, and a taunting proverb against him, and say, Woe to him that increaseth that which is not his! how long? and that ladeth himself with pledges! 7 Shall they not rise up suddenly that shall bite thee, and awake that shall vex thee, and thou shalt be for booty unto them? 8 Because thou hast plundered many nations, all the remnant of the peoples shall plunder thee, because of men's blood, and for the violence done to the land, to the city and to all that dwell therein. 9 Woe to him that getteth an evil gain for his house, that he may set his nest on high, that he may be delivered from the hand of evil! 10 Thou hast devised shame to thy house, by cutting off many peoples, and hast sinned against thy soul. 11 For the stone shall cry out of the wall, and the beam out of the timber shall answer it. 12 Woe to him that buildeth a town with blood, and establisheth a city by iniquity! 13 Behold, is it not of Jehovah of hosts that the peoples labor for the fire, and the nations weary themselves for vanity? 14 For the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the glory of Jehovah, as the waters cover the sea. 15 Woe unto him that giveth his neighbor drink, `to thee' that addest thy venom, and makest him drunken also, that thou mayest look on their nakedness! 16 Thou art filled with shame, and not glory: drink thou also, and be as one uncircumcised; the cup of Jehovah's right hand shall come round unto thee, and foul shame shall be upon thy glory. 17 For the violence done to Lebanon shall cover thee, and the destruction of the beasts, which made them afraid; because of men's blood, and for the violence done to the land, to the city and to all that dwell therein. 18 What profiteth the graven image, that the maker thereof hath graven it; the molten image, even the teacher of lies, that he that fashioneth its form trusteth therein, to make dumb idols? 19 Woe unto him that saith to the wood, Awake; to the dumb stone, Arise! Shall this teach? Behold, it is overlaid with gold and silver, and there is no breath at all in the midst of it. 20 But Jehovah is in his holy temple: let all the earth keep silence before him. Chapter 3 1 A prayer of Habakkuk the prophet, set to Shigionoth. 2 O Jehovah, I have heard the report of thee, and am afraid: O Jehovah, revive thy work in the midst of the years; In the midst of the years make it known; In wrath remember mercy. 3 God came from Teman, And the Holy One from mount Paran. Selah. His glory covered the heavens, And the earth was full of his praise. 4 And `his' brightness was as the light; He had rays `coming forth' from his hand; And there was the hiding of his power. 5 Before him went the pestilence, And fiery bolts went forth at his feet. 6 He stood, and measured the earth; He beheld, and drove asunder the nations; And the eternal mountains were scattered; The everlasting hills did bow; His goings were `as' of old. 7 I saw the tents of Cushan in affliction; The curtains of the land of Midian did tremble. 8 Was Jehovah displeased with the rivers? Was thine anger against the rivers, Or thy wrath against the sea, That thou didst ride upon thy horses, Upon thy chariots of salvation? 9 Thy bow was made quite bare; The oaths to the tribes were a `sure' word. Selah. Thou didst cleave the earth with rivers. 10 The mountains saw thee, and were afraid; The tempest of waters passed by; The deep uttered its voice, And lifted up its hands on high. 11 The sun and moon stood still in their habitation, At the light of thine arrows as they went, At the shining of thy glittering spear. 12 Thou didst march though the land in indignation; Thou didst thresh the nations in anger. 13 Thou wentest forth for the salvation of thy people, For the salvation of thine anointed; Thou woundest the head out of the house of the wicked man, Laying bare the foundation even unto the neck. Selah. 14 Thou didst pierce with his own staves the head of his warriors: They came as a whirlwind to scatter me; Their rejoicing was as to devour the poor secretly. 15 Thou didst tread the sea with thy horses, The heap of mighty waters. 16 I heard, and my body trembled, My lips quivered at the voice; Rottenness entereth into my bones, and I tremble in my place; Because I must wait quietly for the day of trouble, For the coming up of the people that invadeth us. 17 For though the fig-tree shall not flourish, Neither shall fruit be in the vines; The labor of the olive shall fail, And the fields shall yield no food; The flock shall be cut off from the fold, And there shall be no herd in the stalls: 18 Yet I will rejoice in Jehovah, I will joy in the God of my salvation. 19 Jehovah, the Lord, is my strength; And he maketh my feet like hinds' `feet', And will make me to walk upon my high places.




Daily Bible - September 27

Published by Grace To You for reading on September 27th.

Reading for Today:

  • Isaiah 45:1 Chapter 45 1 Thus saith Jehovah to his anointed, to Cyrus, whose right hand I have holden, to subdue nations before him, and I will loose the loins of kings; to open the doors before him, and the gates shall not be shut: –46:13
  • Psalms 111:1-6 Chapter 111 1 Praise ye Jehovah. I will give thanks unto Jehovah with my whole heart, In the council of the upright, and in the congregation. 2 The works of Jehovah are great, Sought out of all them that have pleasure therein. 3 His work is honor and majesty; And his righteousness endureth for ever. 4 He hath made his wonderful works to be remembered: Jehovah is gracious and merciful. 5 He hath given food unto them that fear him: He will ever be mindful of his covenant. 6 He hath showed his people the power of his works, In giving them the heritage of the nations.
  • Proverbs 26:10 10 `As' an archer that woundeth all, So is he that hireth a fool and he that hireth them that pass by.
  • Galatians 5:1-26 Chapter 5 1 For freedom did Christ set us free: stand fast therefore, and be not entangled again in a yoke of bondage. 2 Behold, I Paul say unto you, that, if ye receive circumcision, Christ will profit you nothing. 3 Yea, I testify again to every man that receiveth circumcision, that he is a debtor to do the whole law. 4 Ye are severed from Christ, ye would be justified by the law; ye are fallen away from grace. 5 For we through the Spirit by faith wait for the hope of righteousness. 6 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth anything, nor uncircumcision; but faith working through love. 7 Ye were running well; who hindered you that ye should not obey the truth? 8 This persuasion `came' not of him that calleth you. 9 A little leaven leaveneth the whole lump. 10 I have confidence to you-ward in the Lord, that ye will be none otherwise minded: but he that troubleth you shall bear his judgment, whosoever he be. 11 But I, brethren, if I still preach circumcision, why am I still persecuted? then hath the stumbling-block of the cross been done away. 12 I would that they that unsettle you would even go beyond circumcision. 13 For ye, brethren, were called for freedom; only `use' not your freedom for an occasion to the flesh, but through love be servants one to another. 14 For the whole law is fulfilled in one word, `even' in this: Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. 15 But if ye bite and devour one another, take heed that ye be not consumed one of another. 16 But I say, walk by the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh. 17 For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are contrary the one to the other; that ye may not do the things that ye would. 18 But if ye are led by the Spirit, ye are not under the law. 19 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are `these': fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, 20 idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousies, wraths, factions, divisions, parties, 21 envyings, drunkenness, revellings, and such like; of which I forewarn you, even as I did forewarn you, that they who practise such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 meekness, self-control; against such there is no law. 24 And they that are of Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with the passions and the lusts thereof. 25 If we live by the Spirit, by the Spirit let us also walk. 26 Let us not become vainglorious, provoking one another, envying one another.

Notes:

Isaiah 45:1 His anointed. This word is the one translated from the Hebrew by the transliteration—“Messiah.” It is the word used for the messianic Redeemer King in Psalms 2:2 2 The kings of the earth set themselves, And the rulers take counsel together, Against Jehovah, and against his anointed, `saying', and Daniel 9:25 25 Know therefore and discern, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the anointed one, the prince, shall be seven weeks, and threescore and two weeks: it shall be built again, with street and moat, even in troublous times. , 26, but here refers to Cyrus, as the king set apart by God’s providence for divine purposes. Though not a worshiper of the Lord, the Persian monarch played an unusual role as Israel’s shepherd (44:28) and God’s anointed judge on nations.

Isaiah 45:21 there is no other…There is none. The Lord restated the truth expressed by Moses in Deuteronomy 4:35 35 Unto thee it was showed, that thou mightest know that Jehovah he is God; there is none else besides him. . The scribe who asked Jesus about the greatest commandment cited this same principle in agreeing with Jesus’ answer to his question ( Mark 12:32 32 And the scribe said unto him, Of a truth, Teacher, thou hast well said that he is one; and there is none other but he: ).

Isaiah 45:23 every knee shall bow. In the kingdom age, all nations will worship the one true God of Israel. A further meaning, justified by the New Testament, applies this verse to believers’ accountability to God when He evaluates their works (Rom. 14:11). In assigning the words another meaning, Paul relates the words to the coming universal acknowledgment that “Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father” (Phil. 2:10, 11).

Galatians 5:1 Stand fast. Stay where you are, Paul asserts, because of the benefit of being free from the law and the flesh as a way of salvation and the fullness of blessing by grace. free. Deliverance from the curse that the law pronounces on the sinner who has been striving unsuccessfully to achieve his own righteousness (3:13, 22–26; 4:1–7), but who has now embraced Christ and the salvation granted to him by grace. entangled again. Better translated “to be burdened by,” “to be oppressed by,” or “to be subject to,” because of its connection with a yoke. yoke of bondage. “Yoke” refers to the apparatus used to control a domesticated animal. The Jews referred to the “yoke of the law” as a good thing, the essence of true religion. Paul argued that for those who pursued it as a way of salvation, the law was a yoke of slavery.

Galatians 5:6 neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything. Nothing done or not done in the flesh, even religious ceremony, makes any difference in one’s relationship to God. What is external is immaterial and worthless, unless it reflects genuine internal righteousness (Rom. 2:25–29). faith working through love. Saving faith proves its genuine character by works of love. The one who lives by faith is internally motivated by love for God and Christ (Matt. 22:37–40), which supernaturally issues forth in reverent worship, genuine obedience, and self-sacrificing love for others.

DAY 27: Describe the fruit of the Spirit.

The fruit of the Spirit are the godly attitudes that characterize the lives of only those who belong to God by faith in Christ and possess the Spirit of God. The Spirit produces fruit which consists of 9 characteristics or attitudes that are inextricably linked with each other and are commanded of believers throughout the New Testament.

“Love.” One of several Greek words for love, agape, is the love of choice, referring not to an emotional affection, physical attraction, or a familial bond, but to respect, devotion, and affection that leads to willing, self-sacrificial service ( John 15:13 13 Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. ; Rom. 5:8; 1 John 3:16 16 Hereby know we love, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. , 17).“Joy.” A happiness based on unchanging divine promises and eternal spiritual realities. It is the sense of well-being experienced by one who knows all is well between himself and the Lord (1 Pet. 1:8). Joy is not the result of favorable circumstances, and even occurs when those circumstances are the most painful and severe ( John 16:20 20 Verily, verily, I say unto you, that ye shall weep and lament, but the world shall rejoice: ye shall be sorrowful, but your sorrow shall be turned into joy. –22). Joy is a gift from God, and as such, believers are not to manufacture it but to delight in the blessing they already possess (Rom.14:17; Phil. 4:4). “Peace.” The inner calm that results from confidence in one’s saving relationship with Christ. The verb form denotes binding together and is reflected in the expression “having it all together.” Like joy, peace is not related to one’s circumstances ( John 14:27 27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be fearful. ; Rom. 8:28; Phil. 4:6, 7, 9).

“Longsuffering.” Patience which refers to the ability to endure injuries inflicted by others and the willingness to accept irritating or painful situations (Eph. 4:2;Col. 3:12; 1 Tim.1:15,16). “Kindness.” Tender concern for others, reflected in a desire to treat others gently, just as the Lord treats all believers (Matt. 11:28, 29; 19:13, 14; 2 Tim. 2:24). “Goodness.” Moral and spiritual excellence manifested in active kindness (Rom. 5:7). Believers are commanded to exemplify goodness (6:10; 2 Thess. 1:11). “Faithfulness.” Loyalty and trustworthiness (Lam. 3:22; Phil. 2:7–9; 1 Thess. 5:24; Rev. 2:10).

“Gentleness.” Better translated “meekness.” It is a humble and gentle attitude that is patiently submissive in every offense, while having no desire for revenge or retribution. In the New Testament, it is used to describe 3 attitudes: submission to the will of God (Col. 3:12), teachability ( James 1:21 21 Wherefore putting away all filthiness and overflowing of wickedness, receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls. ), and consideration of others (Eph. 4:2). “Self-control.” This refers to restraining passions and appetites (1 Cor. 9:25; 2 Pet. 1:5, 6). “No law.” When a Christian walks by the Spirit and manifests His fruit, he needs no external law to produce the attitudes and behavior that please God (Rom.8:4).

From The MacArthur Daily Bible Copyright © 2003. Used by permission of Thomas Nelson Bibles, a division of Thomas Nelson, Inc, Nashville, TN 37214, www.thomasnelson.com.

Additional Resources        

The Spirit Unveils the New Covenant

Published by Grace To You for reading on September 27th.

“Whenever Moses is read, a veil lies over their heart; but whenever a man turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away” ( 2 Corinthians 3:15-16 15 But unto this day, whensoever Moses is read, a veil lieth upon their heart. 16 But whensoever it shall turn to the Lord, the veil is taken away. ).

One of the most important truths the Holy Spirit unveils for us is the glory of the New Covenant.

The Old Testament contains many veiled statements, types, prophecies, and parables. The Israelites didn’t understand most of those things because the Old Testament didn’t have plainness of speech. Its glory was veiled and was even described as fading away (2 Cor. 3:13-14).

In contrast to the Old Covenant, the present New Covenant age is characterized by the clarity of all the key doctrinal and practical passages in the New Testament. This progress from the veiled glory of the previous era to the unveiled glory of the present era occurred when the Holy Spirit came in the Book of Acts. All that God wants us to know and do is clearly brought into focus now because of the teaching ministry of the indwelling Spirit.

The Spirit guides and enlightens New Covenant believers as they read and study God’s Word. Therefore, there is no longer any need, for example, to unscramble the pictures and prophecies regarding Christ. Thus Paul can say, “We use great plainness of speech” (2 Cor. 3:12, KJV). He goes on to say in verses 17-18, “Now the Lord is the Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. But we all, with unveiled face beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.”

Those verses describe the essence of the Christian life: becoming like Jesus Christ. The only way to do that is to know well the unveiled glory of the New Covenant and allow the Holy Spirit to change you more and more into the Savior’s image.

Suggestions for Prayer

  • As you go through this day, ask the Lord to remind you often of the glory, clarity, and freedom you have under the New Covenant.
  • Pray that all your actions would reflect this truth.

For Further Study

  • Hebrews 8 Chapter 8 1 Now in the things which we are saying the chief point `is this': We have such a high priest, who sat down on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens, 2 a minister of the sanctuary, and of the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, not man. 3 For every high priest is appointed to offer both gifts and sacrifices: wherefore it is necessary that this `high priest' also have somewhat to offer. 4 Now if he were on earth, he would not be a priest at all, seeing there are those who offer the gifts according to the law; 5 who serve `that which is' a copy and shadow of the heavenly things, even as Moses is warned `of God' when he is about to make the tabernacle: for, See, saith he, that thou make all things according to the pattern that was showed thee in the mount. 6 But now hath he obtained a ministry the more excellent, by so much as he is also the mediator of a better covenant, which hath been enacted upon better promises. 7 For if that first `covenant' had been faultless, then would no place have been sought for a second. 8 For finding fault with them, he saith, Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, That I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah; 9 Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers In the day that I took them by the hand to lead them forth out of the land of Egypt; For they continued not in my covenant, And I regarded them not, saith the Lord. 10 For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel After those days, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, And on their heart also will I write them: And I will be to them a God, And they shall be to me a people: 11 And they shall not teach every man his fellow-citizen, And every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord: For all shall know me, From the least to the greatest of them. 12 For I will be merciful to their iniquities, And their sins will I remember no more. 13 In that he saith, A new `covenant' he hath made the first old. But that which is becoming old and waxeth aged is nigh unto vanishing away. begins a discussion and outline of the superiority of the New Covenant. Read this chapter, and record what it says are differences and improvements from the Old to the New Covenant.
  • Who mediates the New Covenant?

From Strength for Today by John MacArthur Copyright © 1997. Used by permission of Crossway Books, a division of Good News Publishers, Wheaton, IL 60187, www.crossway.com.

Additional Resources        

Always Praying

Published by Grace To You for reading on September 27th.
"With all prayer and petition pray at all times" (Eph. 6:18).

Make prayer an ongoing part of your day.

As important as prayer is to your Christian life, you might expect Paul to list it as another piece of spiritual armor, but he doesn't. Instead, he makes it all-pervasive by instructing us to pray at all times. That's our spiritual lifeline—the air our spirits breathe. The effectiveness of each piece of armor is directly related to the quality of our prayers.

We see the importance of prayer throughout the New Testament. Jesus instructed His disciples to be on the alert at all times, praying so that they would have strength to face the trials and temptations that lie ahead ( Luke 21:36 36 But watch ye at every season, making supplication, that ye may prevail to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man. ). The apostles devoted themselves to prayer ( Acts 6:4 4 But we will continue stedfastly in prayer, and in the ministry of the word. ), as did godly people like Cornelius ( Acts 10:2 2 a devout man, and one that feared God with all his house, who gave much alms to the people, and prayed to God always. ). Every Christian is to be continually devoted to prayer (Rom. 12:12).

In Philippians 4:6 6 In nothing be anxious; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. Paul says, "Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God." He told the Thessalonians to "pray without ceasing" (1 Thess. 5:17) and instructed men everywhere to "pray, lifting up holy hands" (1 Tim. 2:8).

Jesus and Paul not only exhorted believers to pray, but also modeled diligent prayer in their own lives. Jesus often went for extended periods of time alone to pray. Paul wrote often of his own fervent prayers on behalf of others (cf. Col. 1:9; Philem. 4).

As a child, you may have been taught that prayer is reserved for mealtimes, bedtime, or church services. That's a common misconception many children carry into their adult years. But believers are to be in constant communication with God, which is simply the overflow of seeing all of life from His perspective. Just as you would discuss your everyday experiences and feelings with a close friend, so you're to discuss them with God.

God loves you and wants to share your every joy, sorrow, victory, and defeat. Be conscious of His presence today and take advantage of the sweet communion He offers.

Suggestions for Prayer

  • Thank God that He's always available to hear your prayers.
  • Ask Him to give you a desire to commune with Him more faithfully.

For Further Study

What do these verses say about the most appropriate times for prayer: Psalms 55:16-17 16 As for me, I will call upon God; And Jehovah will save me. 17 Evening, and morning, and at noonday, will I complain, and moan; And he will hear my voice. , Daniel 6:10 10 And when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went into his house (now his windows were open in his chamber toward Jerusalem) and he kneeled upon his knees three times a day, and prayed, and gave thanks before his God, as he did aforetime. , Luke 6:12 12 And it came to pass in these days, that he went out into the mountain to pray; and he continued all night in prayer to God. , and 1 Timothy 5:5 5 Now she that is a widow indeed, and desolate, hath her hope set on God, and continueth in supplications and prayers night and day. ?

From Drawing Near by John MacArthur Copyright © 1993. Used by permission of Crossway Books, a division of Good News Publishers, Wheaton, IL 60187, www.crossway.com.

Additional Resources        

September 27 - The World

Published by Grace To You for reading on September 27th.

“‘For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life’” ( John 3:16 16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth on him should not perish, but have eternal life. ).

John 3:16 16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth on him should not perish, but have eternal life. is undoubtedly the most familiar and beloved verse in all of Scripture. The first thing you notice is God’s motive for giving Jesus Christ (2 Cor. 9:15)—because He loved the evil, sinful world of fallen humanity. There was nothing in man that attracted God’s love. Rather He loved because He sovereignly determined to do so.

It is important to note that “world” is a nonspecific term for humanity in a general sense. The statement in verse 17, “that the world might be saved through Him,” proves that it does not mean everyone who has ever lived, since all will not be saved. Verse 16 cannot be teaching universal salvation, since the context promises that unbelievers will perish in eternal judgment (vv. 16–18). Our Lord is saying that for all in the world there is only one Savior ( 1 John 2:2 2 and he is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for the whole world. ), but only those who are regenerated by the Spirit and who believe in His gospel will receive salvation and eternal life through Him.

Paul, in 2 Corinthians 5:19 19 to wit, that God was in Christ reconciling the world unto himself, not reckoning unto them their trespasses, and having committed unto us the word of reconciliation. , used “world” in a similar way: “God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them.” The reason God was reconciling the world to Himself is that the world has no other reconciler. That not all will believe and be reconciled is clear from Paul’s plea in verse 20: “Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were making an appeal through us; we beg you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.”

Ask Yourself

How else might you respond to someone who believes that “a loving God would not send anyone to hell” and therefore everyone will be saved in the end? What does this probably tell you about the person making this claim?

From Daily Readings from the Life of Christ, Vol. 1, John MacArthur. Copyright © 2008. Used by permission of Moody Publishers, Chicago, IL 60610, www.moodypublishers.com.

Additional Resources        

Morning Devotional by C.H. Spurgeon for September 27th

Published by C.H. Spurgeon for reading on September 27th.

Deuteronomy 33:29 29 Happy art thou, O Israel: Who is like unto thee, a people saved by Jehovah, The shield of thy help, And the sword of thy excellency! And thine enemies shall submit themselves unto thee; And thou shalt tread upon their high places.

HE who affirms that Christianity makes men miserable, is himself an utter stranger to it. It were strange indeed, if it made us wretched, for see to what a position it exalts us! It makes us sons of God. Suppose you that God will give all the happiness to His enemies, and reserve all the mourning for His own family? Shall His foes have mirth and joy, and shall His home-born children inherit sorrow and wretchedness? Shall the sinner, who has no part in Christ, call himself rich in happiness, and shall we go mourning as if we were penniless beggars? No, we will rejoice in the Lord always, and glory in our inheritance, for we "have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but we have received the spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father." The rod of chastisement must rest upon us in our measure, but it worketh for us the comfortable fruits of righteousness; and therefore by the aid of the divine Comforter, we, the "people saved of the Lord," will joy in the God of our salvation. We are married unto Christ; and shall our great Bridegroom permit His spouse to linger in constant grief? Our hearts are knit unto Him: we are His members, and though for awhile we may suffer as our Head once suffered, yet we are even now blessed with heavenly blessings in Him. We have the earnest of our inheritance in the comforts of the Spirit, which are neither few nor small. Heritors of joy for ever, we have foretastes of our portion. There are streaks of the light of joy to herald our eternal sunrising. Our riches are beyond the sea; our city with firm foundations lies on the other side the river; gleams of glory from the spirit-world cheer our hearts, and urge us onward. Truly is it said of us, "Happy art thou, O Israel; who is like unto thee, O people saved by the Lord?"

Evening Devotional by C.H. Spurgeon for September 27th

Published by C.H. Spurgeon for reading on September 27th.

Song of Solomon 5:4 4 My beloved put in his hand by the hole `of the door', And my heart was moved for him.

KNOCKING was not enough, for my heart was too full of sleep, too cold and ungrateful to arise and open the door, but the touch of His effectual grace has made my soul bestir itself. Oh, the longsuffering of my Beloved, to tarry when He found Himself shut out, and me asleep upon the bed of sloth! Oh, the greatness of His patience, to knock and knock again, and to add His voice to His knockings, beseeching me to open to Him! How could I have refused Him! Base heart, blush and be confounded! But what greatest kindness of all is this, that He becomes His own porter and unbars the door Himself. Thrice blessed is the hand which condescends to lift the latch and turn the key. Now I see that nothing but my Lord's own power can save such a naughty mass of wickedness as I am; ordinances fail, even the gospel has no effect upon me, till His hand is stretched out. Now, also, I perceive that His hand is good where all else is unsuccessful, He can open when nothing else will. Blessed be His name, I feel His gracious presence even now. Well may my bowels move for Him, when I think of all that He has suffered for me, and of my ungenerous return. I have allowed my affections to wander. I have set up rivals. I have grieved Him. Sweetest and dearest of all beloveds, I have treated Thee as an unfaithful wife treats her husband. Oh, my cruel sins, my cruel self. What can I do? Tears are a poor show of my repentance, my whole heart boils with indignation at myself. Wretch that I am, to treat my Lord, my All in All, my exceeding great joy, as though He were a stranger. Jesus, thou forgivest freely, but this is not enough, prevent my unfaithfulness in the future. Kiss away these tears, and then purge my heart and bind it with sevenfold cords to Thyself, never to wander more.

Recent Videos

FIRST 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 LAST
Ligonier Ministries Sep 21st, 2016
Pillars of Grace: They Speak with One Voice 34 Pillars of Grace: They Speak with One Voice
Desiring God Sep 20th, 2016
John Piper Recites from 1 Peter 13:16 John Piper Recites from 1 Peter
The 1st Bible Team Jul 23rd, 2016
Amazing testimony and words of Jim Caviezel, the actor who played Jesus in The Passion of the Christ film, which is the highest grossing R-rated film in history (and rightly so) just like the Holy Bible is the world's best-selling book (and rightly so). 39:27 Jim Caviezel's Testimony
Reformation Bible College Sep 22nd, 2016
Mohler and Sproul: Questions & Answers 39:33 Mohler and Sproul: Questions & Answers
Ligonier Ministries Sep 20th, 2016
The Doctrine of God and Reformed Theology 01:55 The Doctrine of God and Reformed Theology
Desiring God Sep 20th, 2016
John Piper Recites 1 Peter 13:16 John Piper Recites 1 Peter
Grace to You Sep 20th, 2016
Jesus, the Death Conqueror 51:36 Jesus, the Death Conqueror
Reformation Bible College Sep 22nd, 2016
Albert Mohler: On Heritage and Heroes 38:45 Albert Mohler: On Heritage and Heroes
Ligonier Ministries Sep 20th, 2016
The Essence of Reformed Theology 01:18 The Essence of Reformed Theology
FIRST 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 LAST

Recent Audio Messages

FIRST 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 LAST
 

The Pardon of Prayer, Part 2

By John MacArthur on Sep 27th, 2016

Length: 28:56

 

What Is Involved - Part 2

By Charles F. Stanley on Sep 26th, 2016

Length: 24:30

 

The Secret of Health

By C. H. Spurgeon on May 2nd, 2016

Length: 50:00

 

The Pardon of Prayer, Part 1 B

By John MacArthur on Sep 26th, 2016

Length: 28:56

 

What Is Involved - Part 1

By Charles F. Stanley on Sep 25th, 2016

Length: 24:30

 

Marrow and Fatness

By C. H. Spurgeon on Apr 2nd, 2016

Length: 49:00

 

The Provision of Prayer, Part 2 (Weekend Edition)

By John MacArthur on Sep 25th, 2016

Length: 23:56

 

How to Get the Most Out of Your Work - Part 2

By Charles F. Stanley on Sep 23rd, 2016

Length: 24:30

 

One Greater Than the Temple

By C. H. Spurgeon on Mar 26th, 2016

Length: 49:00

 

The Provision of Prayer, Part 2 (Weekend Edition)

By John MacArthur on Sep 24th, 2016

Length: 23:56

 

How to Walk with God - Part 2

By Charles F. Stanley on Sep 22nd, 2016

Length: 24:30

 

Cheering Words and Solemn Warnings

By C. H. Spurgeon on Feb 27th, 2016

Length: 48:00

FIRST 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 LAST

Recent Bible Studies

 
Why is Jesus to be worshipped as God?

Posted Jun 26th, 2016 by The 1st Bible Team

In this study, we delve into what the Bible says about the divinity of Jesus Christ...

Read More  

SRT