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.

Friday, January 13, 2017

The four-fold purpose of our church gatherings

My Musings in the Morning
('musing' = a period of reflection or thought)

"My heart was hot within me, while I was musing, the fire burned: then I spoke with my tongue:" 
 (Psalm 39:3)

#4: The four-fold purpose of our church gatherings

"They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer."  (Acts 2:42)

If the initial church in Jerusalem is to be a model for our church gatherings today, we can understand four significant and crucial activities that used to take place during each time that they met together based on the above scripture:
  1. They devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching: The apostles had been personally taught and mentored by the Lord Jesus Himself during the last 3.5 years with the objective that they would transmit those teachings to the church. Under the guidance of the Holy Spirit who would bring to remembrance everything that Jesus had taught them (John 14:26), the apostles made a deliberate effort to teach the laity everything that they knew. This is just what Apostle Paul had instructed his spiritual son Timothy as well later (see 2 Timothy 2:2). These teachings eventually got written down as Epistles meant for our instruction. The equivalent activity for us in the church today is the preaching of God's Word, exhortations & Bible Study.
  2. They devoted themselves to fellowship: They were simply together because of the joy they experience for being together in each other's company through fellowship & worship. As it mentions in Hebrews 10:24; they stirred up love (for God and each other) and to do good works (for God's kingdom) in one another through these meetings. Their fellowship was a strong base for them to reach out to others with the gospel. We need to develop a close knit community of faith as well, which will energize us to do kingdom work.
  3. They devoted themselves to breaking bread together: This signified the sacrament of Holy Communion during which they remembered the sufferings of the Lord Jesus Christ to redeem themselves from sin. This was usually significant when they came together to break bread especially on the first day of the week (Acts 20:7). However, the breaking of bread also signified other meals that they had together as a faith community,
  4. They devoted themselves to prayer: Last but not the least, the purpose of their gatherings was to pray together to God together through Jesus Christ who would be present in their midst according to His earlier promise in Mathew 18:20. They prayed unitedly at the temple initially (Acts 3:1) and in different homes later (Acts 12:12) as they were united in their efforts to pray for their specific needs and for the furtherance of the gospel.
May our church gatherings include all these four significant and crucial activities listed above. Be blessed as you meet with your faith community regularly & fulfill God's mission on earth today!

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