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, February 25, 2015

As RECIPIENTS of God’s GRACE, be ‘MORE’ GENEROUS

As RECIPIENTS of God’s GRACE, be ‘MORE’ GENEROUS

February 25 Bible Reading: Deuteronomy Chapters 13-15

"If there is among you a poor man of your brethren, within any of the gates in your land which the Lord your God is giving you, you shall not harden your heart nor shut your hand from your poor brother, but you shall open your hand wide to him and willingly lend him sufficient for his need, whatever he needs. For the poor will never cease from the land; therefore I command you, saying, 'You shall open your hand wide to your brother, to your poor and your needy, in your land.'" (Deut 15:7-8, 11)

God’s grace to the Israelites in freeing them from Egyptian slavery was a model for all Israelites to follow in relation to the poor among them. In the above passage, Moses is instructing the Israelites to remember their former poverty and servitude to the Egyptians (v. 15), be thankful to God for the riches that they have received from God’s bounty and use these gifts to assist the poor among them.

This teaches us an important lesson: since we have experienced the grace of God in abundance we should be more generous than others. We should not “harden our hearts” nor “shut our hands” when dealing with poor people (v. 7). We should not harbor an evil thought that may include hesitation or refusal to help (v. 9) nor should we have a grudging spirit (v. 10). Justice and righteousness must always be combined with compassion!

In this connection, the Jewish people have been deservedly well known for caring for their own throughout history. Paul says the same thing in 2 Corinthians 9:7 that Moses says in verse 10: “God loves a cheerful giver.” This verse is not only a command but a promise, for God is no man’s debtor. “The generous soul will be made rich, and he who waters will also be watered himself” (Prov. 11:25).

The blessings of God should thus motivate us to be a blessing and a help to other less fortunate people among us. Moses mentions the blessing of God many times in this chapter (vv. 4, 6, 10, 14, 18). God has opened His hand generously to us, and we should open our hands widely to others (v. 8). He blesses us so that we might be a blessing (Gen. 12:2). Not only must we have generous hands, but we should cultivate glad hearts as we share (v. 10).

The greatest gift of all is the gift of ourselves because we love one another (vv. 16–17). First, we give ourselves to the Lord (Rom. 12:1–2) and then to one another in loving service (2 Cor. 8:1–5).

"Bear one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ." (Gal 6:2)

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