The book we know as 1st Corinthians is a letter Paul wrote to the church at Corinth to “water” the seed he had previously planted there. Word had gotten back to him that there were contentions among the brethren there. He knew that they needed correction and he rebuked them for having divisions in the church. “Now this I say, that every one of you saith, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ. Is Christ divided? was Paul crucified for you? or were ye baptized in the name of Paul?” (1 Corinthians 1:12-13) Paul did not have a big ego that got him puffed up when he heard that people were following him. He had the humble heart that wanted everyone to be followers of Christ and Christ only. Following any man or man-made creed will never keep us on the right path. Following our Lord and His word will keep us on the one and only right path.
Today’s reading: 1 Corinthians 1-2
In all that the Israelites did, God was still with them. He wanted them all to be saved, but they had responsibilities of their own. “Turn to me and be saved, all the ends of the earth! For I am God, and there is no other.” (Isaiah 45:22) God wants the same for everyone today. “This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.”(1Timothy 2:3-4) Even though He wants all to be saved, it is up to us to follow Him and follow His word to receive salvation.
Today’s reading: Isaiah 45-50
Have you ever heard it said of someone that they had “the patience of Job”? We even read of this mentioned in the New Testament (James 5:11). In all of the trials and suffering that Job endured, he kept his trust in God. We are commanded to have patience daily no matter what happens in our life. In the verses preceding the mention of Job in James chapter 5 we are told to be patient until the coming of the Lord. (James 5:7-8) Sometimes it is not easy to be patient, but if we are waiting on our Lord we know it will be worth the wait! “Behold, we consider those blessed who remained steadfast. You have heard of the steadfastness of Job, and you have seen the purpose of the Lord, how the Lord is compassionate and merciful.” (James 5:11)
Today’s reading: Job 17-18
Psalm 25 is another psalm credited to David that we do not know the circumstances under which it was written. Many times when David shares what is on his mind, we see the humbleness and desire to please God. These words are ones we could rightly repeat for ourselves today. “Shew me thy ways, O LORD; teach me thy paths. Lead me in thy truth, and teach me: for thou art the God of my salvation; on thee do I wait all the day.” (Psalms 25:5) We can know that God will provide these answers if we are diligent in prayer and study of His word.
Today’s reading: Psalms 24-26
Early in this section of the book of Judges is a statement that gets repeated at the end of the book. “In those days there was no king in Israel. Everyone did what was right in his own eyes.” (Judges 17:6,21:25) In between these two verses we read of a lot of evil that was done and what could happen when a nation has no rulers. We do not always agree with our government and the laws of the land, but we are commanded to obey them as long as they are not contrary to God’s word. “Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God.” (Rom 13:1) He does not control them like puppets, but His providence works no matter what men do.
Today’s reading: Judges 17-21
In Genesis 32 we read of Jacob’s fear of his brother Esau. “And the messengers returned to Jacob, saying, “We came to your brother Esau, and he is coming to meet you, and there are four hundred men with him.” Then Jacob was greatly afraid and distressed. He divided the people who were with him, and the flocks and herds and camels, into two camps,” (Gen 32:6-7) Their meeting was not how Jacob envisioned it, “But Esau ran to meet him and embraced him and fell on his neck and kissed him, and they wept.” (Gen 33:4) Jacob had worried about nothing. He did one thing that we all should do, he prayed to God and trusted in Him.
Today’s reading: Genesis 32-35
We all have opportunity to give the Lord food and clothes and visit Him in time of need. Jesus explains how when He is describing the final judgement: “Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’” (Mat 25:37-40) We should remember this explanation daily and look for opportunities to serve Him.
Today’s reading: Matthew 23-25
Jesus was the ultimate example for us to strive to live like. We can never be perfect like He was, but we can do our best to follow what we know about how He lived. “We who are strong have an obligation to bear with the failings of the weak, and not to please ourselves. Let each of us please his neighbor for his good, to build him up. For Christ did not please himself, but as it is written, ‘The reproaches of those who reproached you fell on me.’” (Romans 15:1-3)
Today’s reading: Romans 15-16
Chapter 40 of the book of Isaiah begins a section of prophecy. The prophecy is full of words of comfort to God’s people. “Comfort, comfort my people, says your God.” (Isaiah 40:1) At this time they were in Babylonian captivity and were being told to stay strong and trust that God was in total control. “Have you not known? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary; his understanding is unsearchable. He gives power to the faint, and to him who has no might he increases strength. Even youths shall faint and be weary, and young men shall fall exhausted; but they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.” (Isaiah 40:28-31) It is easy for us to get tired and discouraged, but these words fit in our lives today just as they did then. The Lord and His word is an everlasting strength for us. “The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God will stand forever.” (Isaiah 40:8)
Today’s reading: Isaiah 40-44
Job again hears from his friend Eliphaz. From the way these “friends” talk to Job, you would never know they were his friends at all. Job gives his honest opinion about them: “I have heard many such things; miserable comforters are you all.” (Job 16:2) We cannot always understand other people’s situation, but we can be comforters to them just as God is a comforter to us. “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.” (2Corinthians 1:3-4)
Today’s reading: Job 15-16