DAILY READINGS: 1 Chronicles 2; Ezekiel 3:16 to 4:17; 2 Timothy 4
Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. Philippians 4:11
But godliness with contentment is great gain. 1 Timothy 6:6
Contentment is elusive in this materialistic age. Gratitude is infrequent, even among believers. Paul tells us that he had learned contentment in all circumstances of life. It didn’t come naturally, but in life’s journey with its many trials, he had learned contentment. Elizabeth Elliot wrote, “Thankfulness springs from accepting the gifts and conditions and circumstances God gives us.” The circumstances of our lives are often not what we wanted, but can we, like Paul, learn to rejoice no matter what our situation (Phil. 2:17-18)? —Jim Comte
How many blessings I enjoy that other people don’t,
To weep and sigh because I’m blind, I cannot and I won’t! —Fanny Crosby
DAILY READINGS: 1 Chronicles 1; Ezekiel 2 to 3:15; 2 Timothy 3
Again the next day after John stood…and looking upon Jesus as he walked, he saith, Behold the Lamb of God! John 1:35-36
And I beheld, and, lo, in the midst of the throne…stood a Lamb as it had been slain… Revelation 5:6
John announced Jesus as the Lamb of God. It is interesting that John “stood”. The primary purpose of his ministry was done. Now he looks on Jesus as he “walked”. He had further, much further, to go! The following years would see the fulfilment of John’s words as He hung on the cross, the Lamb of Calvary! In Revelation the language changes, “…in the midst of the throne…stood a Lamb as it had been slain…“. The victory was won. He had no further to go! —Drew Craig
Dwelling in eternal sunshine, of the countenance of God,
Jesus fills all heav’n with incense, of His reconciling blood. —R. Chapman
DAILY READINGS: 2 Kings 25; Ezekiel 1; 2 Timothy 2
But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8
Mary Ann Bird was born with a cleft palate and hare lip and received much abuse at school. Her teacher, Mrs. Leonard gave her class a yearly hearing test. The pupils would stand at a distance and the teacher would whisper sentences like, “The sky is blue. Do you have new shoes?” When Mary Ann took the test, her teacher whispered, “I wish you were my little girl.” All of us were born with sinful hearts, but there is One who whispers in our ears, “I want you in my family. Look at Calvary and you will be convinced.” —Milton Haack
When every ray of light had fled, O glorious day!
Raising my soul from out the dead, love found a way.
DAILY READINGS: 2 Kings 24; Lamentations 4-5; 2 Timothy 1
…stand fast in the Lord, my dearly beloved. Philippians 4:1
The Lord met Paul on the Damascus road and told him, “rise and stand on your feet” (Acts 26:16, NKJV). From then on Paul stood before rulers, stood up to his own nation and at the end of his life he was still standing. He wrote, “…no man stood with me…Notwithstanding the Lord stood with me” (2 Tim. 4:16-17). Confident of the Lord’s power to make him stand (Rom. 14:4) he writes to the Philippian believers and to us, “…stand fast in the Lord, my dearly beloved” (Phil. 4:1). —Rex Trogdon
Stand up, stand up, for Jesus, ye soldiers of the cross;
Lift high His royal banner; it must not suffer loss.
From vict’ry unto vict’ry, His army shall He lead,
Till ev’ry foe is vanquished, and Christ is Lord indeed.
DAILY READINGS: 2 Kings 23; Lamentations 3; 1 Timothy 6
…When ye say, Every one that doeth evil is good… Malachi 2:17
Western society is seeing Christianity decline, unlike the rest of the world where there is significant and sustained growth. Not only is there numerical decline but there is serious decline in biblical understanding and moral life is at a low level. Laws are introduced that negate Scriptural truth and endorse evil and corrupt practices. It is a time when evil is described as good and good spoken of as evil. We must remember that God’s standards for moral behaviour never change. He will right all wrongs in a coming day when the only place of safety will be the person of Jesus Christ. —Paul Young
Justice and truth from His sceptre shall spring,
Wrong shall be ended when Jesus is King.
—C. Silvester Horne
DAILY READINGS: 2 Kings 21:19 to 22:20; Lamentations 2; 1 Timothy 5
And Moses brought their cause before the Lord. Numbers 27:5
…Hezekiah went up into the house of the Lord, and spread it before the Lord. 2 Kings 19:14
Moses was challenged by the situation the daughters of Zelophehad had brought before him. What was the right course of action? What was God’s will? Moses rightly laid the matter before the Lord. Hezekiah did the same when the armies of Assyria were surrounding Jerusalem. On both occasions the Lord answered their prayers and revealed His mind. When we are faced with difficult problems as elders, individuals or parents, where do we turn for guidance? —Pete Smith
Mine eyes are unto Thee, my God; my soul on Thee doth wait,
My hope is in Thy faithful Word, and in Thy love so great.
DAILY READINGS: 2 Kings 20 to 21:18; Lamentations 1; 1 Timothy 4
And let the beauty of the Lord our God be upon us… Psalm 90:17
The above prayer request was penned by Moses. Is this our desire as well, to reflect God’s beauty? How is this even possible? Moses’ face shone when he came down from the mountain. Why? Because he had spent time in God’s presence! We too will reflect His beauty as we spend more time in His presence. —E. V.
Let the beauty of Jesus be seen in me,
All His wondrous compassion and purity:
O, Thou Spirit divine, all my nature refine,
Till the beauty of Jesus be seen in me.
DAILY READINGS: 2 Kings 19; Jeremiah 52; 1 Timothy 3
Saul said…I have transgressed the commandment of the Lord…because I feared the people, and obeyed their voice. 1 Sam. 15:24
Saul made a feeble excuse! A king fearing his people! This is a typical example of peer pressure—doing what will please everyone around me, instead of what I know is right and will please the Lord. Everyday we have to make similar choices and must decide, “Will I do what is popular or will I do what God would have me do?” The problem can be summed up by asking, “Do I fear God or do I fear man?” —David Croudace
Am I a soldier of the cross, a follower of the Lamb?
And shall I fear to own His cause or blush to speak His name?
Must I be carried to the skies on flowery beds of ease,
While others fight to win the prize, and sail through bloody seas?
DAILY READINGS: 2 Kings 18; Jeremiah 51:25-64; 1 Timothy 2
…who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross… Hebrews 12:2
The cross was a time of fearful suffering: spiritual, emotional and physical. Christ did not enjoy the cross; He endured it. He knew beforehand the nature of his death. For months He told His disciples that in Jerusalem He would be rejected, humiliated, scourged and nailed to a cross. What sustained Him through that awesome suffering? Part of the answer is the joy of having a vast throng of the redeemed in heaven with Him. When sinners turn to Him it gives Him much joy. When believers follow Him and live for Him it makes His heart glad. Let’s give Him joy by our lives. —Donald L. Norbie
I gave, I gave My life for thee;
What has thou given for Me? —Frances R. Havergal
DAILY READINGS: 2 Kings 17; Jeremiah 51:1-24; 1 Timothy 1
…that great shepherd of the sheep… Hebrews 13:20
The writer to the Hebrews has been giving his readers some firm reminders. In every way, in the glorious person, titles and offices of the Lord Jesus, He is better than anything to which they may have been accustomed previously. Now at the end of this sure and triumphant treatise, he commends them lovingly to the care of their great Shepherd. The way ahead will be fraught with false doctrine and hostility, but the victorious, great Shepherd will be there to strengthen at every moment of the earthly pilgrimage. —Mark Fenn
We are Thine, do Thou befriend us,
Be the Guardian of our way;
Keep Thy flock, from sin defend us,
Seek us when we go astray. —Dorothy A. Thrupp