"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, December 21, 2012

December 21 Bible Reading: 2 Peter Chapters 1-3

We must CONFIRM our upward CALL & ELECTION: "Therefore, brethren, be even more diligent to make your call and election sure, for if you do these things you will never stumble; for so an entrance will be supplied to you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ." (2 Peter 1:10-11)

In the above passage, Apostle Peter exhorts us to confirm our upward call and election, which are two facets of God’s plan of salvation. Our election refers to God’s sovereign, eternal choice of us as we belong to Him. Our upward call refers to God’s action at a certain point in time when He has made His choice evident in our lives, and we respond to His call either by accepting or rejecting His plan of salvation for us. There is a distinction between the two: our election took place before the world was even created. "(God) chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love" (Eph. 1:4). However, our upward call took place at different times during our life. Chronologically, God first elects us and then He calls us. In our human experience, we first become aware of His call and then we realize we were chosen in Christ from all eternity!

So, when Apostle Peter tells us to “be even more diligent to make your call and election sure”, what he means is that we should confirm them by growing in likeness to God as part of our character formation. God wants us to invest wisely in our spiritual development through investing in spiritual qualities like faith, virtue, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, brotherly kindness and love into our character (vv. 5-7). When we do that, we receive wonderful returns on our investment like godliness (v. 7), fruitfulness (v. 8), assurance of our calling (v. 9) and victory over sin (v. 10). In fact, by manifesting the fruit of the Spirit, we can provide unmistakable evidence that we truly belong to Him!

A holy life thus proves the reality of our salvation. Living a holy life will keep us from stumbling and falling into sin. If we walk in the Spirit, we will be spared from being disqualified for His service (Gal. 5:16). While we move forward for Him, and we should confirm our calling and election by the fact that we have been cleansed from our old sins. Assurance of God’s call in our lives comes through the evidence of the Holy Spirit’s work in our lives (1 John 3:10, 14) as well as through the internal testimony of the Holy Spirit in our hearts (Gal. 4:6). Our true faith will persevere to the end and we will inevitably bear spiritual fruit in our lives (Gal. 5:6, 22, 23).

Simply practicing what Apostle Peter has advocated would make God’s calling and our election clear to everyone who comes in contact with us. We can then walk worthy of the Lord without stumbling along the way. By pursuing Christian growth every day, we give evidence that God really did call and choose us for Himself. Let us confirm our call and election through our lifestyle every day!

"Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus." (Phil. 3:12-14)

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