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, August 1, 2012

August 1 Bible Reading: Isaiah Chapters 49-51

UNDERSTANDING the ‘INTIMATE LOVE’ that GOD has for us: "Can a woman forget her nursing child, and not have compassion on the son of her womb? Surely they may forget, yet I will not forget you. See, I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands; your walls are continually before Me." (Isaiah 49:15-16)

The above declarations are made by Jehovah God to His beloved children Israel when they had complained that they were forsaken by God. God promises Israel that His new covenant with the Gentiles does not negate His old covenant with Israel. In fact, God will overcome Israel’s destroyer, clothe Israel in ornaments, multiply her numbers, and cause the nations to help her. He will indeed be her Savior and Redeemer (see Isaiah 43:1-21; Obad. 15).

Not only that, but God promises that His relationship with Israel is much more intimate and profound than what they imagine. Could a mother ever forget her nursing child? Even if that unlikely event happened, God would be even more faithful and would never forget Israel. In fact, she is inscribed on the palms of His hands, and her walls are never out of His mind. This is what God declares: “As for Me, I am unable to forget you.”

This act of inscribing in the palms of God’s hands may be compared to the names of the tribes of Israel inscribed on the stones of the priest’s ephod (see Exodus 28:9–12). When the priest was in the temple, the engraved names would remind God of His covenant with Israel. In the similar manner, the Creator God has His thoughts always focused on the welfare of His people.

There are times when we wonder if God really cares about us (v. 14), but He assures us that we are never forgotten. We are His beloved children (v. 15) and He will never forget us (v. 16). Let us be rest assured about God’s intimate love for us and boldly declare: "When my father and my mother forsake me, then the Lord will take care of me." (Psalms 27:10)

When times of discouragement and doubt come, never forget that God still loves you! We instinctively compare the reference to the palms of Jehovah’s hands with the love wounds borne by Christ for us. God’s love for us is as expansive as the open arms of Christ on the cross. In Isaiah 49:15, God has tried to compare His love, care and compassion with something we can relate to – the care and compassion of a woman towards her nursing child. Surely even if a new mother may forget her nursing baby, be assured – God will never forget us anytime…ever!!!

"Many, O Lord my God, are Your wonderful works which You have done; and Your thoughts toward us cannot be recounted to You in order; if I would declare and speak of them, they are more than can be numbered." (Psalms 40:5)

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