GETTING THE MOST FROM GOD'S WORD:

"Do NOT labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to everlasting LIFE..." - The Gospel of John 6:27 (NKJV)
A systematic and daily reading of the Word of God is important in maintaining a strong Christian life. Establish a daily quiet time with God and His Word. Pray that the Holy Spirit will help you understand what you read. By following our daily Bible reading schedule through this blog, you will be able to read the Bible through in a year. Please note that you may utilize the ‘BIBLE READER’ app that is installed at the bottom of this webpage to assist you in reading the specified scripture portion for today.

To get the MOST from God's Word, please do the following intentionally:
1. REQUEST God to connect with you as you read the word of God with FOCUS and OPENNESS to see what God wants to speak with you.
2. READ the selected sections of Scripture slowly as you mark the words and phrases that intrigue you, even reading them the second time to get a better understanding.
3. REFLECT on what God is communicating to you; stopping long enough to let the seed of God's Word take root in your heart.
4. RESPOND to the passage speaking directly to God about what is in your heart, and then look out for ways to live out what you find - individually, and to others within your church and elsewhere.

As you read and meditate, ask yourself the following three questions:
a) What is God speaking to me through this passage?
b) Is there a command, a promise or a warning for me?
c) Is there an example for me to follow?

Please POST your comments below if there is a thought or message that the Lord has spoken to you through the passage that you are reading and meditating today. Please make sure that your post is aligned to the scripture passage mentioned at the header. All comments should pertain to the relevant scripture portions only, and should be aimed to glorify God (the true author of 'The Bible') & edify everyone who visits this blog site daily - both young and old. May God bless you abundantly for encouraging others through your comments!

Let's PRAY...
LORD, give me the desire to take a little time out of my busy schedule today as I read and meditate on Your Word. Give me this day MY DAILY BREAD. Speak to me clearly & lead me today as my Good Shepherd. Help me to be a blessing to others who interact with me as I attempt to be a living witness of Your Word today. In Your Name I pray, AMEN.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

March 16 Bible Reading: Judges Chapters 13-15

Never let your guard down like Samson: The story of Israel is repeated again and again. Israel did evil: then God delivered them again into the hands of the Philistines. When Israel was in this distress, Samson was born to Manoah and his wife who had been childless. The Angel of the Lord declared that Samson would be special, and therefore had to follow some restrictions. "Now therefore, please be careful not to drink wine or similar drink, and not to eat anything unclean. For behold, you shall conceive and bear a son. And no razor shall come upon his head, for the child shall be a Nazirite to God from the womb; and he shall begin to deliver Israel out of the hand of the Philistines" (Judges 13:4-5).

There were three restrictions that the Angel of the Lord had imposed on Samson and his mother (while she was carrying him in her womb):
  1. Should not drink wine or similar drink (that is intoxicating)
  2. Should not eat anything that is unclean
  3. Should not get a haircut with a razor
God’s purposes were clear as He appeared to Samson’s parents two times to repeat the rules. However, as Samson grew up it appears that he had a weakness for foreign women and did not hesitate to marry a Philistine. This was the first instance of letting his guard down. However, God used this relationship to trouble the Philistines through Samson. The second instance when Samson let his guard down was when he took and ate honey that was in the carcass of a lion that he had killed with his bare hands (Judges 14:8-9). This was directly against God’s ruling that he should not eat anything that is unclean. The third instance when Samson let his guard down was when he succumbed to the crying and pleading of his Philistine wife to explain the riddle. He had a weakness that would prove detrimental to his ultimate downfall. However, the Spirit of God came mightily upon Samson (Judges 14:6, 19; 15:14) when it was time to confront the enemy, and equipped him to do great exploits on behalf of Israel.

We should be careful that we never let our guard down like Samson. We should always operate under strict boundaries that are given to us in God’s word, and should shy away even from those things that may appear to be improper and lead us away from God. Let us pay close attention to the following verses that will guide us in our daily living: "All things are lawful for me, but all things are not helpful. All things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any" (1 Cor 6:12). "Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God's” (1 Cor 6:19-20).

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