Monday, December 31, 2012

DAILY READINGS: Esther 9-10; Malachi 3:7 to 4:6; Rev. 22:6-21



I was by the side of the great river Hiddekel… Then I lifted up mine eyes, and looked, and behold a certain man. Daniel 10:4,5


The great river Hiddekel originally sourced out of Eden (Gen. 2:14). Centuries later its tempestuous waters flowed on, a metaphor for the stormy history of men and nations. Daniel was distressed about the future and God gave him this glorious image. Over the unpredictable river of time stands a divine Man. History is His story and He reigns supreme above it all. All these years later, the stream of time is flowing into a new year. Still He stands above the volatile affairs of humanity. His sovereign purposes will be accomplished and He will see our little vessel safely to the other shore. —S. McEachern

I sing of mercies that endure, forever builded firm and sure,
Of faithfulness that never dies, established changeless in the skies.—Author Unknown



Lord’s Day, December 30, 2012

DAILY READINGS: Esther 7-8; Malachi 2:10 to 3:6; Rev. 21:9 to 22:5



He is altogether lovely. This is my beloved, and this is my friend. Song of Solomon 5:16

This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. Matthew 3:17

He hath made us accepted in the beloved. Ephesians 1:6


It is easy to understand how the Father was well pleased with His Beloved Son. But the miracle of grace is that we have been accepted in the Beloved and now call Him our Beloved. Can it be, that all the moral perfections that the Father sees in His Son are seen in us? “In the Beloved” is a place of eternal security. It is a place of rejoicing and communion. May we draw near in communion today, offering worship to Him who has brought us to this place. —Milton Haack

Accepted in the Well-beloved, and clothed in righteousness divine,
I see the bar to heaven removed; and all Thy merits, Lord, are mine.—Charles Wesley


Saturday, December 29, 2012

DAILY READINGS: Esther 5-6; Malachi 1 to 2:9; Rev. 20:7 to 21:8


Neither… neither… neither… nor… neither. Acts 24:12-13

As he reasoned of righteousness, temperance, and judgment to come, Felix trembled. Acts 24:25


There is no more powerful asset nor destructive liability to Gospel testimony than a believer’s life. As Paul gave defense before Felix, he could state with a clear conscience—in the presence of many eye witnesses—that he had not done that which he was accused of. His life was an asset to the Gospel message. His violent accusers were disarmed, and the hired orator was speechless. Perhaps we are not really so timid about preaching Christ as Saviour to others, as we are ashamed that we don’t reflect Christ as Lord ourselves. —Rick Morse


Bold shall I stand in Thy great day; for who aught to my charge shall lay?
Fully absolved through these I am from sin and fear, from guilt and shame.—Nikolaus L. von Zinzendorf


Friday, December 28, 2012


DAILY READINGS: Esther 3-4; Zech. 13:7 to 14:21; Rev. 19:11 to 20:6




Lo, I am with you alway, [even] unto the end of the world. Amen. Matthew 28:20


When our Lord Jesus gave the Great Commission to His disciples, He did not leave them alone. He promised them His presence and all these centuries later, we who serve the Lord may be assured of His abiding presence with us too. If the world sees us at all, it is probably as pilgrims, treading a lonely path. Yet we can know for a certainty that the Lord is with us! —Mark Fenn

He leaves us not alone to trace,
Our path across the waste;
But leads us still, with living grace,
Homeward, whereto we haste. —J. N. Darby


Thursday, December 27, 2012

DAILY READINGS: Esther 2; Zechariah 12 to 13:6; Revelation 19:1-10



Neither hath the eye seen, O God, beside thee, what hath prepared for him that waiteth for Him. Isaiah 64:4


One writer has said, “Waiting doesn’t diminish us any more than waiting diminishes an expecting mother; we are enlarged in the waiting.” How many of the Lord’s people have been to the “school of waiting”—perhaps impatiently, or reluctantly, or resignedly? But as we wait trustingly and confidently, we may well find ourselves enlarged as our request matures and we are prepared to receive it as a gift from God. —M. MacMullen

Be still my soul, thy God doth undertake
To guide the future as He has the past.
Thy hope, thy confidence let nothing shake,
All now mysterious shall be bright at last. —K. von Schlegel


Wednesday, December 26, 2012

DAILY READINGS: Esther 1; Zechariah 11; Revelation 18


He shall feed His flock like a shepherd: He shall gather the lambs with His arm, and carry them in His bosom, and shall gently lead those that are with young. Isaiah 40:11


With tenderness, the God who holds the waters in His hand and exerts power over the universe, will gently shepherd His people during His earthly reign. Some render it: “He carries them close to His heart.” Such is the way of the Good Shepherd who always is tender towards His people. Although this promise is future, we may presently enjoy security in our merciful Lord. —Keith Keyser

There is rest for the weary soul,
There is rest in the Saviour’s love;
There is rest in the grace that has made us whole,
And that seeketh out those who rove. —J. N. Darby


Tuesday, December 25, 2012

DAILY READINGS: Nehemiah 13; Zechariah 9-10; Revelation 17


And it came to pass in those days that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed. Luke 2:1


“In those days”


Born among cattle in poverty sore, living in meekness by Galilee’s shore,
Dying the death as the wicked ones swore, Jesus, wonderful Lord. —Paul White

world power was vested in one man. In an outpost of his vast empire, a carpenter and a peasant girl were on their way to Bethlehem because of his decree. In Mary’s womb, she carried the Son of God, the Lord Jesus. Was Caesar Augustus really in control? He did not know the promise of Micah 5:2 that said Christ would be born in Bethlehem, and yet his command fulfilled that prophecy. Yes, “in those days”a sovereign God was at work and Mary in His grace brought forth the One who will one day rule and reign. Remember, God is still in control, “in these days!” —Jim Comte


Monday, December 24, 2012

DAILY READINGS: Nehemiah 12; Zechariah 8; Revelation 16



Blessed is the people that know the joyful sound: they shall walk, O LORD, in the light of thy countenance. Psalms 89:15


There is not too much good news in this world. Spiritual darkness is spreading faster than ever. Still the message of the angel is ever new. “And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord” (Luke 2:10,11). This is old news, yet it is ever new. Notice the psalmist says, “Blessed is the people that know the joyful sound.” It is not something to hear only, but to know and walk in the joy of it, particularly at this season that recalls His birth. —Harold G. Smith


Joyful, all ye nations rise, join the triumph of the skies;
With th’angelic host proclaim, “Christ is born in Bethlehem!” —C. Wesley




Lord’s Day, December 23, 2012

DAILY READINGS: Nehemiah 10-11; Zechariah 7; Revelation 15


Praise the LORD… all cattle; creeping things, and flying fowl. Praise ye the LORD. Psalm 148:7,10, 14


At the birth of Jesus, the cattle shared their stable and their manger was His bed. There was no room for Him in the inn (Lk. 2:7, 16). The angels announced His birth to shepherds. It was a glorious sight (Lk. 2:8-14)! Two young pigeons were His parents’ offering (as required by law of a poor man) to celebrate their first born (Lk. 2:21-24). He owns the cattle on a thousand hills, all the fowls of the mountains and the wild beasts of the field (Psa. 50:10, 11). In some small way they entered into His incarnation and creation itself must have rejoiced at His birth. What can you share with Him today? —K. C. Ung

All creatures of our God and King, lift up your voice and with us sing,
O praise Him! O praise Him! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! — Francis of Assisi


Saturday, December 22, 2012

DAILY READINGS: Nehemiah 9; Zechariah 5-6; Revelation 14


For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour which is Christ the Lord. Luke 2:11


Four hundred years before the angel spoke these words to the shepherds, the last book of Israel’s history was written. It had been a sad, depressing story of sin. But now a Saviour was born. What a hope for mankind! Yet as we read through the Gospels we see that God in the person of Christ was rejected again. They crucified Him. But in that place of seeming hopelessness we know that Christ Jesus died to “save sinners.” Now we have a sure and glorious hope. Heaven awaits for those who accept the salvation He offers. Will you accept the Lord Jesus Christ as Saviour? —M. Robins

Wonderful, wonderful Jesus, He is my friend, true to the end,
He gave Himself to redeem me, Jesus, wonderful Lord. —Paul White