Daily Bible Readings, Saturday, August 31, 2013

Psalm Prayer: 110

Prayer Point. This psalm is a hymn of praise to king Jesus (compare verse 1 to Luke 20:40-44). If you feel like giving up, worship God through prayer by thanking him for raising Jesus from the dead and making him both Lord and King.

Mark 14:43-52

Pray. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you understand what you are reading.

Read. Read the passage slowly either alone or in a group and answer the following questions:

Listen. What is the passage saying? What are the main points? Using the following background as a guide.

Background. Here we see the disciple Judas betray Jesus. Notice how he identifies Jesus to the chief priests, scribes, and the elders. He betrays Jesus by calling him Rabbi and greeting him with a kiss. Things start to get violent as one of the disciples draw his sword and cuts off the ear of the high priest. Now Jesus questions the leaders, “Have you come out as against a robber, with swords and clubs to capture me?” Notice how he speaks to the officials. Notice his last words in this scene. Why does Jesus surrender this way? What does Jesus accomplish by doing this? Who is left with Jesus as he is arrested? What happened to the disciples?

Obey. What is God asking me to do?

Repent. How have I failed to obey what God is asking me to do? Confess those failures to God and ask for his forgiveness.

Believe. Which of God’s promises would I need to believe in order to obey and share what I have read?

Share. What can I share and with whom can I share it?

Final Prayer. Pray for the faith to believe the promises of God so that you might obey and share what you have learned.

Acts 28:17-31

Pray. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you understand what you are reading.

Read. Read the passage slowly either alone or in a group and answer the following questions:

Listen. What is the passage saying? What are the main points? You can use the following background to help you understand the main points of this passage.

Background. As the book of Acts comes to a close, let’s take a step back at look at the ground we’ve covered. The book opened with the resurrected Christ giving a promise to his disciples:

Acts 1:8 But you receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of earth.

Acts is a story of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the church in Jerusalem (chapter 2). The shockwaves of that event, Pentecost, radiate out like the ripples of a rock hitting the water; first Jerusalem, then Judea and Samaria, and finally the ends of the earth. The message was given to Israel and then extended to the Gentiles, and so God calls a people for himself from every nation under heaven.

Who does Paul preach to when he gets to Rome? How does he explain his appearance in Rome? What sources does Paul use to convince the Jews of Jesus’ message about the Kingdom of God? Note that Law of Moses and the Prophets is the Jewish way of saying “Old Testament.” What kind of response does Paul get? Why does he decide to preach to the Gentiles? As the story ends, how do we know that the promise to take the message of Jesus to the ends of the earth has been fulfilled?

Obey. What is God asking me to do?

Repent. How have I failed to obey what God is asking me to do? Confess those failures to God and ask for his forgiveness.

Believe. Which of God’s promises would I need to believe in order to obey and share what I have read?

Share. What can I share and with whom can I share it?

Final Prayer. Pray for the faith to believe the promises of God so that you might obey and share what you have learned.

1 Kings 7:51-8:21

Pray. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you understand what you are reading.

Read. Read the passage slowly either alone or in a group and answer the following questions:

Listen. What is the passage saying? What are the main points? You can use the following background to help you understand the main points of this passage.

Background. For the better part of 800 years the ark of the covenant was kept in a tent (tabernacle). This troubled David who wanted to build a house for the LORD but he would have to settle for his son to build that house. The house is now complete and now it is time to bring the ark of the covenant into the temple. This was cause for great celebration and sacrifices (for the offerings were “without number” for multitude. The celebration occurred during the seventh month (Ethanim) at the time of the Feast of Booths which was to serve as a reminder to the Israelites of the journey through the wilderness when all Israel lived in tents. The Lord showed his approval by filling the temple with a great cloud which, in essence, forced the priests serving there to come out.

Solomon blessed the LORD and recounted that David had it in his heart “to build a house for the name of the Lord, the God of Israel. But the LORD said to David my father, ‘Whereas it was in your heart to build a house for my name, you did well that it was in your heart. Nevertheless, you shall not build the house, but your son who shall be born to you shall build the house for my name.’ Now the LORD has fulfilled his promise that he made.” (1 Kings 8:17-20 ESV)

Obey. What is God asking me to do?

Share. What can I share and with whom can I share it?

Repent. How have I failed to obey and share what God is asking me to do? Confess those failures to God and ask for his forgiveness.

Believe. Which of God’s promises would I need to believe in order to obey and share what I have read?

Final Prayer. Pray for the faith to believe the promises of God so that you might obey and share what you have learned.

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