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.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

‘GENUINE’ REPENTANCE will TURN AWAY God’s ANGER

‘GENUINE’ REPENTANCE will TURN AWAY God’s ANGER

March 15 Bible Reading: Judges Chapters 10-12

Then the children of Israel again did evil in the sight of the Lord, and served the Baals and the Ashtoreths, the gods of Syria, the gods of Sidon, the gods of Moab, the gods of the people of Ammon, and the gods of the Philistines; and they forsook the Lord and did not serve Him. So the anger of the Lord was hot against Israel; and He sold them into the hands of the Philistines and into the hands of the people of Ammon...and the children of Israel said to the Lord, "We have sinned! Do to us whatever seems best to You; only deliver us this day, we pray." So they put away the foreign gods from among them and served the Lord. And His soul could no longer endure the misery of Israel. (Judges 10:6-7, 15-16)

Around 1125 B.C., the children of Israel again broke the very first of the ten commandments of God (Exodus 20:3), and slid into unrestrained idolatry. They began to worship not only the gods of Canaan, but also those of surrounding nations (v. 6). Jehovah became so angry at their disobedience that He sold them out to two foreign oppressors: the Philistines from the west and the Ammonites from the east (v. 7). For the next eighteen years these two heathen groups harassed and oppressed the children of Israel so severely that they cried out to Jehovah out of pain and frustration (vv. 8–10).

We should note that this spiritual apostasy of the children of Israel was not merely a matter of syncretism (the combination of different forms of belief or practice), but they had totally abandoned their worship of Jehovah, and had been worshipping the gods of other heathen nations. When the Israelites now tearfully cried out to God, He refused their pleadings at first by citing several instances of how He had delivered them in the past but how every time they had turned their backs on Him (vv. 11-13). God further told them to go and cry out to the gods that they had chosen for themselves (v. 14).

Now, we see ‘genuine’ repentance from the children of Israel. They now totally surrendered themselves at the mercy of God, and were willing to take any punishment from Him as long as He delivered them from their oppressors (v. 15). As an outward sign of their repentance, they put away the strange gods and started serving God (v. 16a). Any true act of repentance is more than a verbal plea, and it will result in a definite change of actions that can be seen outwardly!

We can also glimpse the tender heart of God, as He was moved by the plight of His wayward children. In fact, the plight of the children of Israel became intolerable to Him (v. 16b). Despite their constant sinning and backsliding, God still loved the Israelites and shared their misery just like parents are moved by their children’s suffering. "As a father pities his children, so the Lord pities those who fear Him" (Psalms 103:13). God soon delivered them through Jephthah (11:32-33) as His response to their genuine repentance!

Let us be clear that genuine repentance (turning away from-sin and towards-God) will truly please God. To have remorse (to be sorry) and regret (to wish otherwise) are not the same as to repent, even though they may be the outward manifestations of repentance. Godly repentance will ultimately lead to our salvation (2 Cor 7:9-10). Let us examine our hearts today and turn away from anything we are doing wrong in the sight of God! This act will bring deliverance in our lives today!   

"Search me, O God, and know my heart; try me, and know my anxieties; and see if there is any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting." (Psalms 139:23-24)

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