Daily Bible Readings – Thursday, October 10, 2013

Prayer Psalm: 134

Prayer Point.  Psalm 134 was a prayer blessing the priests who served on the temple’s night watch, preparing the sacrifices for the next day. We too have brothers and sisters on the other side of the globe who serve God while we sleep.  Use this psalm to pray that God will bless them.

Matthew 9:18-26

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.Notice what happens here. A ruler in charge of the synagogue comes to Jesus. His daughter has died and in an act of humility and faith he got down on his knees and asked Jesus to raise his daughter. What does Jesus do when the ruler asks him to raise his daughter?

Next we see a woman who had a bleeding disorder for twelve years come on the scene. This woman was considered by Jewish law to be unclean. Imagine, for twelve years being an outcast living in isolation. Christ changes all of that and where does it begin? According to Jesus what healed the woman? Notice how she reaches out to Jesus. It wasn’t the “correct” way, but it was sufficient for her healing.

Once again we turn to the ruler and his daughter. Typical of Jewish funerals professional mourners were hired to mourn for the deceased. Jesus tells them to go away. Why does Jesus send the crowds away? What does this miracle say about Jesus’ power over life and death? Since Jesus has the power over life and death shouldn’t we trust him with all our problems?

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 Corinthians 12:1-11

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. What is impossible without the power of the Holy Spirit (see verse 3)? “Jesus is Lord” was no idle statement. In Paul’s day, “Caesar is Lord” was the pledge of allegiance of the Roman Empire. To declare “Jesus is Lord” was considered to be an act of treason.

While all Christians have the same Spirit, and the same Lord, how is each follower of Jesus unique? Why is each Christian given “spiritual gifts” by the Holy Spirit? What examples of spiritual gifts does Paul give us? For a fuller list of spiritual gifts see 1 Corinthians 12:27-31; Romans 12:1-8; Ephesians 4:11-13; and 1 Peter 4:10-11. How would you define spiritual gifts? Which gifts do you think you have?

We live in a society where gifts and talents are a means to enriching the self. Who is to benefit from our unique set of spiritual gifts?

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.

2 Kings 23:4-25

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. How far did Josiah’s campaign to remove idol worship and the corrupted forms of the worship from the Israel?

Josiah had what might best be described as a “scorched earth” policy regarding the high places and the altars and shrines dedicated to any god other than the LORD.  There would be no other place of worship except in Jerusalem.  Once in Bethel, Josiah destroyed the high place, burned the Asherah (the consort goddess for the LORD provided to Him by Manasseh).  Not happy with that, Josiah unearthed the bones of those buried in Bethel in the high place and burned them on the altar and defiled it “according to the word of the LORD that the man of God proclaimed who had predicted these things.” (2 Kings 23:16 ESV. See also 1 Kings 13:2 where the prophesy is proclaimed.)

What did the celebration of the Passover look like? What is the author’s assessment of Josiah? Why?

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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