Daily Bible Readings – Saturday, February 2, 2013

Prayer Psalm: 23

Prayer Point. God’s way is a journey that leads us to the house of the LORD, but takes us through the valleys of the shadow of death. It is difficult journey, but God promises to be with us everywhere we go. Meditate on the promises this psalm offers us and prayer for the faith to believe them.

Mark 9:14-29

Background. Jesus, Peter, James and John return from the mountain (see Mark 9:2-13 for that exciting story) to find the other disciples in a heated debate with the teachers of the law. There is a demon-possessed boy they are unable to heal.

Pay close attention to …

  • Jesus’ criticism of the crowds (most likely including the disciples) and what they are missing.
  • How the boy’s father responds when Jesus points out his lack of faith.
  • Why the disciples were unable to cast out the demon.

Listen. Believe. Obey. Share.

What is the passage saying? About God? About ourselves? (Listen)
What is God asking us to believe? (Believe)
What is God asking us to do? (Obey)
Who can we share this with? (Share)

Galatians 5:25-6:10

Background. Back in chapter 4 verse 6, Paul tells the Galatians that they received the Holy Spirit when they put their faith in Jesus Christ. The Holy Spirit not reminds us that we are true children of God (see Galatians 4:6), but he is also the power within us to live a new life.

Pay close attention to …

  • What is true of those who belong to Jesus Christ with regards to their sinful nature and their new relationship with the Holy Spirit.
  • How followers of Jesus should relate to each other now that they are under the influence of the Holy Spirit.
  • How each follower of Jesus should examine themselves.
  • How teachers in the church are to be treated.
  • The contrast between the results of sowing to the Spirit and sowing to the sinful nature.

Listen. Believe. Obey. Share.

What is the passage saying? About God? About ourselves? (Listen)
What is God asking us to believe? (Believe)
What is God asking us to do? (Obey)
Who can we share this with? (Share)

Isaiah 51:1-8

Background. The sad truth is that we all need constant encouragement/incentive to follow Christ. It was no different in Isaiah’s time. His people also needed incentive to persevere and in the first eight verses of this chapter there are three such incentives.

The first incentive takes the form of remembrance: in this case remembering Abraham and Sarah. Remember that Abraham “believed God” even when God told him that Sarah would, at age ninety, give birth to the long-awaited son God had promised Abraham. The point is that Abraham believed God. God came through and Israel became a great nation also as promised.

The second incentive regards God’s truth which will be extended throughout the nations (and islands) and thus offering salvation to Jew and Gentile alike.

The third incentive is for “you people who have my law in your hearts … But my righteousness will last forever and my salvation through all generations.” (v. 8)

Pay close attention to …

  • Abraham and Sarah as examples of people of faith (v. 2)
  • The restoration described (v. 3)
  • The by-product of this faith (v. 3)
  • What the law becomes to the nations (v. 4)
  • What the islands wait and hope for (v. 5)
  • The temporality of the earth and heavens and the permanence of God’s righteousness and salvation (v. 6)
  • Why the people have no need to fear the reproach or be terrified by the insults of men (v. 7)
  • The fate of those who strive against God’s people (v. 8)
  • How long salvation and righteousness will last (v. 8)

Listen. Believe. Obey. Share.

What is the passage saying? About God? About ourselves? (Listen)
What is God asking us to believe? (Believe)
What is God asking us to do? (Obey)
Who can we share this with? (Share)

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