Daily Bible Readings – Friday, March 7, 2014

Prayer Psalm: 35

Prayer Point. There are two ways we can respond to injustice.  We can seek vengeance, or, as Psalm 35 encourages us, leave matters of justice in God’s hands. Where do you see injustice in our world? Lift the victims of this injustice up to God in prayer and ask him to rescue them.

John 17:9-19

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 guide you.

Background. John 17 is commonly known as Jesus’ “High Priestly Prayer.”  Priests represent the people before God and in this prayer Jesus is representing us before his Father by praying for us.  Imagine.

Verse 9 tells us that Jesus is praying for his disciples, “his own.” How did these disciples come to belong to Jesus? What did Jesus do for his disciples while he was with them?  What does Jesus ask the Father to do for his disciples in his absence?  In case you were wondering, “to sanctify someone” is to make them holy, or to use Christian language, to make someone like Jesus.

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 4:1-9

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 guide you.

Background. Chapter 4 begins “therefore …” But therefore what and why? Here is what chapter 4 is responding to.

Philippians 3:20 Our citizenship is in heaven.  And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ … therefore … [chapter 4]

How are we to live on today with this promise as our tomorrow?  What are we to do and not do? List out the commands you see in verses 1-9.

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.

Ezekiel 18:1-4, 25-32

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?

Obey. What is God asking me to do?  You can use the following background to guide you.

Background. Chapter 12: Ezekiel will portray visually what will happen to Judah.  The LORD has Ezekiel pack his bags for a journey [exile] in broad daylight in the sight of the people — it is important that the people watch Ezekiel pack his bags.  He does this expressly as a visual demonstration of what will happen to the Jews.

Chapter 13: The false prophets are exposed.  The false prophets are trying to encourage the people by telling them more of what they want to hear than what the LORD says.  Again, nature will ally with God to bring judgment to these false prophets.

Chapter 14: This chapter discusses that the idolaters will be judged and punished.  The prophets whom they seek out for comfort will be misleading them because they are false prophets.

Chapter 15: Jerusalem is likened to a vine which is now useless.  “I will make the land desolate because they have been unfaithful,” declares the Sovereign LORD.

Chapter 16: This chapter is an allegory of Jerusalem.  [Allegory: (1) the expression by means of symbolic fictional figures and actions of truths or generalizations about human existence; an instance (as in a story or painting) of such expression.  (2) a symbolic representation: EMBLEM.]  It is descriptive of how the LORD had nurtured his people and the loving care he showered on them.  She proved adulterous/unfaithful.

Chapter 17: Another allegory this time the nation (people) is represented by a vine which is ultimately uprooted.  This is the fate of Jerusalem.   Let’s face it, the LORD will continue to pull out the stops in an effort impress upon his people to abandon their idols and their need for him.

Pay close attention to …

  • The opening proverb (v. 2 )
  • The clarification in verses 3 and 4
  • Another clarification in plain language in verses 19-20
  • The reward of repentance (v. 21 )
  • The LORD’s heart toward the death of the wicked (v. 23 )
  • The accusation of the people against the LORD (v. 29 )
  • The overall theme of this chapter (v. 32 )

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.

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