Daily Bible Readings – Thursday, September 12, 2013

Prayer  Psalm: 59

Prayer Point. David wrote this psalm while his enemies lurked outside his home looking for an opportunity to kill him. Despite his fear, he places those concerns in God’s hands. How do we pray this same prayer? By remembering that we were the enemies who found an opportunity to kill Jesus and when we nailed him to a cross, he said, “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.” Pray that we might trust God with our justice and security concerns and that we might have the forgiving heart of Jesus.

Matthew 2:13-23

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. Why does Joseph flee with Mary and Jesus to Egypt? Rachel was the wife of Jacob. In the quotation she stands for all the Israelite mothers. Here we see Herod’s cruelty in plain view. The killing of all boys two and under was a tragedy. How does Joseph find out that it is OK to go back home to Israel? Why does he make his home in Galilee?

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.

Philippians 2:12-30

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. There is a mystery, a paradox, that runs through the Scriptures and in Paul’s letter to the Philippians concerning how we grow as a follower of Christ. On the one hand, our growth is a work of God …

Philippians 2:13 … it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose.

Yet we also have some hard work to do as we follow Jesus …

Philippians 2:12 … continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling.

What does it look for us to work out our salvation as God works in us?  What does God do?  What do we do?

Paul, as he travelled around the Roman Empire planting churches never traveled alone. Accompanying Paul were people like Timothy and Epaphroditis who learned to do what Paul was doing and served alongside him. What role will Timothy and Epaphroditis play when they come to Philippi?

 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 18:1-19

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. The conflict between Elijah and the royal couple, Ahab and Jezebel, was more than a personal fight. It was war between the God of Israel and Baal. There were real casualties in this war. Who are they? How does God protect his own prophets from being wiped out? How will this war be decided?

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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