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.

Friday, March 25, 2011

March 25 Bible Reading: 1 Samuel Chapters 16-18

Our BATTLES belong to GOD alone: Then David said to the Philistine, "You come to me with a sword, with a spear, and with a javelin. But I come to you in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. This day the Lord will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you and take your head from you. And this day I will give the carcasses of the camp of the Philistines to the birds of the air and the wild beasts of the earth, that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel. Then all this assembly shall know that the Lord does not save with sword and spear; for the battle is the Lord's, and He will give you into our hands." (1 Sam 17:45-47)

When Saul disobeyed the commandments of God and acted presumptuously, God chose David to be the next king of Israel as He was a man after His own heart. This is what Samuel prophetically spoke to King Saul: "The Lord has sought for Himself a man after His own heart, and the Lord has commanded him to be commander over His people, because you have not kept what the Lord commanded you." (1 Sam 13:14). Even though Samuel erred in assuming one of the elder sons of Jesse as a likely candidate for the throne, God looked at the heart of David and chose him among his more ‘worthy’ elder brothers. "For the Lord does not see as man sees; for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart." (1 Sam 16:7b)

When David volunteered to fight Goliath, there were seven specific reasons for him to enter into this battle alone:
  1. David was anointed by God’s Spirit: After David was anointed with oil by Samuel, the Spirit of the Lord came upon him to empower him for all future battles. "Then Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the midst of his brothers; and the Spirit of the Lord came upon David from that day forward." (1 Sam 16:13)
  2. David was courageous and skilled in warfare: This was the testimony of one of Saul’s servants about David: "Look, I have seen a son of Jesse the Bethlehemite, who is skillful in playing, a mighty man of valor, a man of war, prudent in speech, and a handsome person; and the Lord is with him." (1 Sam 16:18)
  3. David had righteous anger against God’s enemy: In his reaction to the challenge of Goliath, David displayed his righteous anger against God’s enemy. "For who is this uncircumcised Philistine, that he should defy the armies of the living God?" (1 Sam 17:26)
  4. David had a testimony about past victories: David had wonderful experience of past victories during the time that he was a shepherd boy that he described to King Saul: "Your servant has killed both lion and bear; and this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, seeing he has defied the armies of the living God." (1 Sam 17:36)
  5. David was confident in God’s ability to deliver: David was very confident that his God who delivered him from ferocious animals that were stronger than him would deliver him from Goliath. This is what he said to King Saul: "The Lord, who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear, He will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine." (1 Sam 17:37)
  6. David fought the battle in God’s mighty name: It is striking to note that David fought the battle in the almighty name of Jehovah, the Lord of Hosts. This was his challenge to Goliath: Then David said to the Philistine, "You come to me with a sword, with a spear, and with a javelin. But I come to you in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied." (1 Sam 17:45)
  7. David had faith in God fighting his battle: David knew in his heart that God did not save by the sword or the spear, but the battle belonged to God alone. This was what he spoke finally to Goliath: "Then all this assembly shall know that the Lord does not save with sword and spear; for the battle is the Lord's, and He will give you into our hands." (1 Sam 17:47)
The Israelites had totally forgotten about God’s promises that He would fight their battles for them, as all they could fear about was losing to Goliath. The Israelites had seen God fight many of their previous battles and win great victories for them, but they neglected to trust God with this battle. However, David’s focus was not on the size of the enemy, but on God. David was convinced that his battles belonged to God alone – truly he was a man after God’s own heart!

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