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.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

August 20 Bible Reading: Jeremiah Chapters 40-42

SEEK DIRECTION from GOD only TO FOLLOW THEM: "For you were hypocrites in your hearts when you sent me to the Lord your God, saying, 'Pray for us to the Lord our God, and according to all that the Lord your God says, so declare to us and we will do it.' And I have this day declared it to you, but you have not obeyed the voice of the Lord your God, or anything which He has sent you by me. Now therefore, know certainly that you shall die by the sword, by famine, and by pestilence in the place where you desire to go to dwell." (Jer 42:20-22)

Terrified of the Babylonians after the fall of Jerusalem, and fearful of the Ammonites after the assassination of the appointed governor Gedaliah, the survivors of Jerusalem made preparations to flee to Egypt (41:16–18). These survivors included “soldiers, women, children, and court officials.” Before departing, however, they made a pretense of seeking God’s guidance by asking prophet Jeremiah for a word from the Lord (42:1–3). When the prophet consented, they promised to obey, no matter what the guidance was.

God’s answers do not always come immediately but in His own good time. Ten days later the answer came: Don’t flee to Egypt but stay in the land. If they stay, God will prosper them. If they flee, all the perils they feared in Judah will overtake them in Egypt. But it seems that the people were already determined to flee to Egypt, so Jeremiah told them flatly that they would meet disaster there.

What we can see here is that although the Jewish refugees promised to obey God’s will, the Lord’s message (vv. 7–22) conflicted with their plans (42:19–43:3). The Lord’s will was against seeking refuge in Egypt (Deut. 17:16). The underlying issue here was false trust and the delusion of safety in human power and calculation (22:20, 22; 30:14).

Many times we seek direction from God, but only want to hear what is ‘convenient’ for us (2 Tim. 4:3, 4). We pray falsely and expect God to just validate our desires. We ask God for guidance, but our minds are already made up to do what we want. Unfortunately, such pretense of “seeking counsel” from God is just window dressing, and this action does not please God. Let us seek direction from God only to follow them!

"Where do wars and fights come from among you? Do they not come from your desires for pleasure that war in your members? You lust and do not have. You murder and covet and cannot obtain. You fight and war. Yet you do not have because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures." (James 4:1-3)

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