Sunday 21st January 2018
11Dear friends, since God loved us that much, we surely ought to love each other. 12No one has ever seen God. But if we love each other, God lives in us, and his love is brought to full expression in us.
1 John 4:11-12 (NLT)
Saturday 20th January 2018
9God showed how much he loved us by sending his one and only Son into the world so that we might have eternal life through him. 10This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins.
1 John 4:9-10 (NLT)
Friday 19th January 2018
7Dear friends, let us continue to love one another, for love comes from God. Anyone who loves is a child of God and knows God. 8But anyone who does not love does not know God, for God is love.
1 John 4:7 (NLT)
Thursday 18th January 2018
9Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Hold tightly to what is good. 10Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honouring each other. 11Never be lazy, but work hard and serve the Lord enthusiastically. 12Rejoice in our confident hope. Be patient in trouble, and keep on praying. 13When God’s people are in need, be ready to help them. Always be eager to practice hospitality.
Romans 12:9-13 (NLT)
Wednesday 17th January 2018
31As soon as Judas left the room, Jesus said, “The time has come for the Son of Man to enter into his glory, and God will be glorified because of him. 32And since God receives glory because of the Son, he will soon give glory to the Son. 33Dear children, I will be with you only a little longer. And as I told the Jewish leaders, you will search for me, but you can’t come where I am going. 34So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. 35Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.”
John 13:31-35 (NLT)
Tuesday 16th January 2018
Oh, how great are God’s riches and wisdom and knowledge! How impossible it is for us to understand his decisions and his ways!
34For who can know the Lord’s thoughts? Who knows enough to give him advice?
35And who has given him so much that he needs to pay it back?
36For everything comes from him and exists by his power and is intended for his glory. All glory to him forever! Amen.
Romans 11:33-35 (NLT)
Monday 15th January 2018
1If I could speak all the languages of earth and of angels, but didn’t love others, I would only be a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. 2If I had the gift of prophecy, and if I understood all of God’s secret plans and possessed all knowledge, and if I had such faith that I could move mountains, but didn’t love others, I would be nothing. 3If I gave everything I have to the poor and even sacrificed my body, I could boast about it; but if I didn’t love others, I would have gained nothing.
4Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud 5or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. 6It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. 7Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.
8Prophecy and speaking in unknown languages and special knowledge will become useless. But love will last forever! 9Now our knowledge is partial and incomplete, and even the gift of prophecy reveals only part of the whole picture! 10But when the time of perfection comes, these partial things will become useless.
11When I was a child, I spoke and thought and reasoned as a child. But when I grew up, I put away childish things. 12Now we see things imperfectly, like puzzling reflections in a mirror, but then we will see everything with perfect clarity. All that I know now is partial and incomplete, but then I will know everything completely, just as God now knows me completely.
13Three things will last forever—faith, hope, and love—and the greatest of these is love.
1 Corinthians 13 (NLT)
Friday 12th January 2018
So humble yourselves under the mighty power of God, and at the right time he will lift you up in honour. 7Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.
8Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. 9Stand firm against him, and be strong in your faith. Remember that your Christian brothers and sisters all over the world are going through the same kind of suffering you are.
1 Peter 5:6-9 (NLT)
Thursday 11th January 2018
Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. 29Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.”
Matthew 11:28-30 (NLT)
Wednesday 10th January 2018
Don’t be misled—you cannot mock the justice of God. You will always harvest what you plant. 8Those who live only to satisfy their own sinful nature will harvest decay and death from that sinful nature. But those who live to please the Spirit will harvest everlasting life from the Spirit. 9So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up. 10Therefore, whenever we have the opportunity, we should do good to everyone—especially to those in the family of faith.
Galatians 6:7-10 (NLT)
Tuesday 9th January 2018
We who are strong ought to bear with the failings of the weak and not to please ourselves. Each of us should please our neighbors for their good, to build them up.
Romans 15:1-2 (NIV)
Monday 8th January 2018
“So fear the Lord and serve him wholeheartedly. Put away forever the idols your ancestors worshiped when they lived beyond the Euphrates River and in Egypt. Serve the Lord alone. But if you refuse to serve the Lord, then choose today whom you will serve. Would you prefer the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates? Or will it be the gods of the Amorites in whose land you now live? But as for me and my family, we will serve the Lord.”
Joshua 24:14-15 (NLT)
Sunday 7th January 2018
But tell me this—since we preach that Christ rose from the dead, why are some of you saying there will be no resurrection of the dead? 13For if there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ has not been raised either. 14And if Christ has not been raised, then all our preaching is useless, and your faith is useless. 15And we apostles would all be lying about God—for we have said that God raised Christ from the grave. But that can’t be true if there is no resurrection of the dead. 16And if there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ has not been raised. 17And if Christ has not been raised, then your faith is useless and you are still guilty of your sins. 18In that case, all who have died believing in Christ are lost! 19And if our hope in Christ is only for this life, we are more to be pitied than anyone in the world.
20But in fact, Christ has been raised from the dead. He is the first of a great harvest of all who have died.
1 Corinthians 15:12-20 (NLT)
Saturday 6th January 2018
I passed on to you what was most important and what had also been passed on to me. Christ died for our sins, just as the Scriptures said. 4He was buried, and he was raised from the dead on the third day, just as the Scriptures said. 5He was seen by Peter and then by the Twelve. 6After that, he was seen by more than 500 of his followers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have died. 7Then he was seen by James and later by all the apostles. 8Last of all, as though I had been born at the wrong time, I also saw him. 9For I am the least of all the apostles. In fact, I’m not even worthy to be called an apostle after the way I persecuted God’s church.
I Corinthians 15:3-9 (NLT)
Friday 5th January 2018
1Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the old heaven and the old earth had disappeared. And the sea was also gone. 2And I saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven like a bride beautifully dressed for her husband.
3I heard a loud shout from the throne, saying, “Look, God’s home is now among his people! He will live with them, and they will be his people. God himself will be with them. 4He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever.”
5And the one sitting on the throne said, “Look, I am making everything new!” And then he said to me, “Write this down, for what I tell you is trustworthy and true.” 6And he also said, “It is finished! I am the Alpha and the Omega—the Beginning and the End. To all who are thirsty I will give freely from the springs of the water of life.
Revelation 21:1-6 (NLT)
Thursday 4th January 2018
And now, just as you accepted Christ Jesus as your Lord, you must continue to follow him. 7Let your roots grow down into him, and let your lives be built on him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness.
8Don’t let anyone capture you with empty philosophies and high-sounding nonsense that come from human thinking and from the spiritual powers of this world, rather than from Christ. 9For in Christ lives all the fullness of God in a human body. 10So you also are complete through your union with Christ, who is the head over every ruler and authority.
11When you came to Christ, you were “circumcised,” but not by a physical procedure. Christ performed a spiritual circumcision—the cutting away of your sinful nature. 12For you were buried with Christ when you were baptized. And with him you were raised to new life because you trusted the mighty power of God, who raised Christ from the dead.
13You were dead because of your sins and because your sinful nature was not yet cut away. Then God made you alive with Christ, for he forgave all our sins. 14He cancelled the record of the charges against us and took it away by nailing it to the cross. 15In this way, he disarmed the spiritual rulers and authorities. He shamed them publicly by his victory over them on the cross.
Colossians 2: 6-15 (NLT)
Wednesday 3rd January 2018
God, the Lord, created the heavens and stretched them out. He created the earth and everything in it. He gives breath to everyone,life to everyone who walks the earth. And it is he who says,
6“I, the Lord, have called you to demonstrate my righteousness. I will take you by the hand and guard you, and I will give you to my people, Israel, as a symbol of my covenant with them. And you will be a light to guide the nations.
7You will open the eyes of the blind. You will free the captives from prison,releasing those who sit in dark dungeons.
8“I am the Lord; that is my name! I will not give my glory to anyone else, nor share my praise with carved idols.
9Everything I prophesied has come true, and now I will prophesy again. I will tell you the future before it happens.”
Isaiah 42:5-9 (NLT)
Tuesday 2nd January 2018
Sing a new song to the Lord for he has done wonderful deeds. His right hand has won a mighty victory; his holy arm has shown his saving power!
2The Lord has announced his victory and has revealed his righteousness to every nation!
3He has remembered his promise to love and be faithful to Israel. The ends of the earth have seen the victory of our God.
Psalm 98:1-3 (NLT)
Monday 1st January 2018
So we have stopped evaluating others from a human point of view. At one time we thought of Christ merely from a human point of view. How differently we know him now! 17This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!
18And all of this is a gift from God, who brought us back to himself through Christ. And God has given us this task of reconciling people to him. 19For God was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself, no longer counting people’s sins against them. And he gave us this wonderful message of reconciliation. 20So we are Christ’s ambassadors; God is making his appeal through us. We speak for Christ when we plead, “Come back to God!” 21For God made Christ, who never sinned, to be the offering for our sin, so that we could be made right with God through Christ.
2 Corinthians 5:16-21 (NLT)
Sunday 31st December 2017
And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honourable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise. Keep putting into practice all you learned and received from me—everything you heard from me and saw me doing. Then the God of peace will be with you.
Philippians 4:8-9 (NLT)
Saturday 30th December 2017
Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:6-7 (NLT)
Friday 29th December 2017
Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.
Philippians 3:13b-14 (NLT)
Thursday 28th December 2017
I once thought these things were valuable, but now I consider them worthless because of what Christ has done. Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ and become one with him. I no longer count on my own righteousness through obeying the law; rather, I become righteous through faith in Christ
For God’s way of making us right with himself depends on faith. I want to know Christ and experience the mighty power that raised him from the dead. I want to suffer with him, sharing in his death, so that one way or another I will experience the resurrection from the dead!
Philippians 3:7-11 (NLT)
Wednesday 27th December 2017
Do everything without complaining and arguing, so that no one can criticize you. Live clean, innocent lives as children of God, shining like bright lights in a world full of crooked and perverse people. Hold firmly to the word of life; then, on the day of Christ’s return, I will be proud that I did not run the race in vain and that my work was not useless.
Philippians 2:14-16 (NLT)
Tuesday 26th December 2017
Dear friends, you always followed my instructions when I was with you. And now that I am away, it is even more important. Work hard to show the results of your salvation, obeying God with deep reverence and fear. For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him.
Philippians 2:12-13 (NLT)
Monday 25th December 2017
You must have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had. Though he was God he did not think of equality with God as something to cling to. Instead, he gave up his divine privileges; he took the humble position of a slave and was born as a human being. When he appeared in human form, he humbled himself in obedience to God and died a criminal’s death on a cross. Therefore, God elevated him to the place of highest honour and gave him the name above all other names, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
Philippians 2:5-11 (NLT)
Sunday 24th December 2017
So the Word became human and made his home among us. He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness.
And we have seen his glory, the glory of the Father’s one and only Son.
Saturday 23rd December 2017
After this interview the wise men went their way. And the star they had seen in the east guided them to Bethlehem. It went ahead of them and stopped over the place where the child was. When they saw the star, they were filled with joy! They entered the house and saw the child with his mother, Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasure chests and gave him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. When it was time to leave, they returned to their own country by another route, for God had warned them in a dream not to return to Herod.
Matthew 2:9-12 (NLT)
Friday 22nd December 2017
Then Herod called for a private meeting with the wise men, and he learned from them the time when the star first appeared. Then he told them, “Go to Bethlehem and search carefully for the child. And when you find him, come back and tell me so that I can go and worship him, too!”
Matthew 2:7-8 (NLT)
Thursday 21st December 2017
King Herod was deeply disturbed when he heard this, as was everyone in Jerusalem. He called a meeting of the leading priests and teachers of religious law and asked, “Where is the Messiah supposed to be born?” “In Bethlehem in Judea,” they said, “for this is what the prophet wrote: ‘And you, O Bethlehem in the land of Judah, are not least among the ruling cities of Judah, for a ruler will come from you who will be the shepherd for my people Israel.
Matthew 2:3-6 (NLT)
Wednesday 20th December 2017
Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the reign of King Herod. About that time some wise men from eastern lands arrived in Jerusalem, asking, “Where is the newborn king of the Jews? We saw his star as it rose, and we have come to worship him.”
Matthew 2:1-2 (NLT)
Tuesday 19th December 2017
But you, O Bethlehem Ephrathah, are only a small village among all the people of Judah. Yet a ruler of Israel will come from you,one whose origins are from the distant past. Th e people of Israel will be abandoned to their enemies until the woman in labour gives birth. Then at last his fellow countrymen will return from exile to their own land. And he will stand to lead his flock with the Lord’s strength, in the majesty of the name of the Lord his God. Then his people will live there undisturbed, for he will be highly honoured around the world. And he will be the source of peace. When the Assyrians invade our land and break through our defences, we will appoint seven rulers to watch over us, eight princes to lead us.
Monday 18th December 2017
but Mary kept all these things in her heart and thought about them often. The shepherds went back to their flocks, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen. It was just as the angel had told them.
Luke 2:19-20 (NLT)
Sunday 17th December 2017
When the angels had returned to heaven, the shepherds said to each other, “Let’s go to Bethlehem! Let’s see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.” They hurried to the village and found Mary and Joseph. And there was the baby, lying in the manger. After seeing him, the shepherds told everyone what had happened and what the angel had said to them about this child. All who heard the shepherds’ story were astonished,
Luke 2:15-18 (NLT)
Saturday 16th December 2017
Suddenly, the angel was joined by a vast host of others—the armies of heaven—praising God and saying, “Glory to God in highest heaven, and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.”
Luke 2:13-14 (NLT)
Friday 15th December 2017
That night there were shepherds staying in the fields nearby, guarding their flocks of sheep. Suddenly, an angel of the Lord appeared among them, and the radiance of the Lord’s glory surrounded them. They were terrified, but the angel reassured them. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people. The Saviour—yes, the Messiah, the Lord—has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David! And you will recognize him by this sign: You will find a baby wrapped snugly in strips of cloth, lying in a manger.”
Thursday 14th December 2017
And while they were there, the time came for her baby to be born. She gave birth to her first child, a son. She wrapped him snugly in strips of cloth and laid him in a manger, because there was no lodging available for them.
Luke 2:6-7 (NLT)
Wednesday 13th December 2017
At that time the Roman emperor, Augustus, decreed that a census should be taken throughout the Roman Empire. This was the first census taken when Quirinius was governor of Syria.) All returned to their own ancestral towns to register for this census. And because Joseph was a descendant of King David, he had to go to Bethlehem in Judea, David’s ancient home. He traveled there from the village of Nazareth in Galilee. He took with him Mary, his fiancée, who was now obviously pregnant.
Luke 2:1-5 (NLT)
Tuesday 12th December 2017
Mary responded, “Oh, how my soul praises the Lord. How my spirit rejoices in God my Savior! For he took notice of his lowly servant girl, and from now on all generations will call me blessed. For the Mighty One is holy, and he has done great things for me. He shows mercy from generation to generation to all who fear him. His mighty arm has done tremendous things! He has scattered the proud and haughty ones. H e has brought down princes from their thrones and exalted the humble. H e has filled the hungry with good things and sent the rich away with empty hands. He has helped his servant Israel and remembered to be merciful. For he made this promise to our ancestors, to Abraham and his children forever.” Mary stayed with Elizabeth about three months and then went back to her own home.
Monday 11th December 2017
A few days later Mary hurried to the hill country of Judea, to the town where Zechariah lived. She entered the house and greeted Elizabeth. At the sound of Mary’s greeting, Elizabeth’s child leaped within her, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. Elizabeth gave a glad cry and exclaimed to Mary, “God has blessed you above all women, and your child is blessed. Why am I so honoured, that the mother of my Lord should visit me? When I heard your greeting, the baby in my womb jumped for joy. You are blessed because you believed that the Lord would do what he said.”
Luke 1:38-45 (NLT)
Sunday 10th December 2017
All of this occurred to fulfil the Lord’s message through his prophet:
“Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel, which means ‘God is with us.’”
When Joseph woke up, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded and took Mary as his wife.
But he did not have sexual relations with her until her son was born. And Joseph named him Jesus.
Matthew 1:22-24 (NLT)
Saturday 9th December 2017
This is how Jesus the Messiah was born. His mother, Mary, was engaged to be married to Joseph. But before the marriage took place, while she was still a virgin, she became pregnant through the power of the Holy Spirit. Joseph, her fiancé, was a good man and did not want to disgrace her publicly, so he decided to break the engagement quietly.
As he considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream. “Joseph, son of David,” the angel said, “do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife. For the child within her was conceived by the Holy Spirit. And she will have a son, and you are to name him Jesus
for he will save his people from their sins.”
Matthew 1:18-21 (NLT)
Friday 8th December 2017
In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a village in Galilee, to a virgin named Mary. She was engaged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of King David. Gabriel appeared to her and said, “Greetings, favoured woman! The Lord is with you!”
Confused and disturbed, Mary tried to think what the angel could mean.
“Don’t be afraid, Mary,” the angel told her, “for you have found favour with God! You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you will name him Jesus. He will be very great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his ancestor David.
And he will reign over Israel forever; his Kingdom will never end!”
Mary asked the angel, “But how can this happen? I am a virgin.” The angel replied, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the baby to be born will be holy, and he will be called the Son of God.
What’s more, your relative Elizabeth has become pregnant in her old age! People used to say she was barren, but she has conceived a son and is now in her sixth month.
For nothing is impossible with God.”
Mary responded, “I am the Lord’s servant. May everything you have said about me come true.” And then the angel left her.
Luke 1:26-38 (NLT)
Thursday 7th December 2017
Zechariah said to the angel, “How can I be sure this will happen? I’m an old man now, and my wife is also well along in years.” Then the angel said, “I am Gabriel! I stand in the very presence of God. It was he who sent me to bring you this good news!
But now, since you didn’t believe what I said, you will be silent and unable to speak until the child is born. For my words will certainly be fulfilled at the proper time.”
Meanwhile, the people were waiting for Zechariah to come out of the sanctuary, wondering why he was taking so long.
When he finally did come out, he couldn’t speak to them. Then they realized from his gestures and his silence that he must have seen a vision in the sanctuary.
When Zechariah’s week of service in the Temple was over, he returned home.
Soon afterward his wife, Elizabeth, became pregnant and went into seclusion for five months.
“How kind the Lord is!” she exclaimed. “He has taken away my disgrace of having no children.”
Luke 1:18-25 (NLT)
Wednesday 6th December 2017
While Zechariah was in the sanctuary, an angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing to the right of the incense altar. Zechariah was shaken and overwhelmed with fear when he saw him. But the angel said, “Don’t be afraid, Zechariah! God has heard your prayer. Your wife, Elizabeth, will give you a son, and you are to name him John. You will have great joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth, for he will be great in the eyes of the Lord. He must never touch wine or other alcoholic drinks. He will be filled with the Holy Spirit, even before his birth.
And he will turn many Israelites to the Lord their God. He will be a man with the spirit and power of Elijah. He will prepare the people for the coming of the Lord. He will turn the hearts of the fathers to their children and he will cause those who are rebellious to accept the wisdom of the godly.”
Luke 1:11-17 (NLT)
Tuesday 5th December 2017
When Herod was king of Judea, there was a Jewish priest named Zechariah. He was a member of the priestly order of Abijah, and his wife, Elizabeth, was also from the priestly line of Aaron. Zechariah and Elizabeth were righteous in God’s eyes, careful to obey all of the Lord’s commandments and regulations.
They had no children because Elizabeth was unable to conceive, and they were both very old. One day Zechariah was serving God in the Temple, for his order was on duty that week.
As was the custom of the priests, he was chosen by lot to enter the sanctuary of the Lord and burn incense. While the incense was being burned, a great crowd stood outside, praying. Luke 1:5-10 (NLT)
Monday 4th December 2017
“The day will come, says the Lord, when I will do for Israel and Judah all the good things I have promised them.
“In those days and at that time I will raise up a righteous descendant from King David’s line. He will do what is just and right throughout the land.
In that day Judah will be saved, and Jerusalem will live in safety. And this will be its name: ‘The Lord Is Our Righteousness.’ Jeremiah 33:14-16 (NLT)
Sunday 3rd December 2017
Out of the stump of David’s family will grow a shoot—yes, a new Branch bearing fruit from the old root. And the Spirit of the Lord will rest on him—the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might, the Spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord.
He will delight in obeying the Lord. He will not judge by appearance nor make a decision based on hearsay.
He will give justice to the poor and make fair decisions for the exploited. The earth will shake at the force of his word, and one breath from his mouth will destroy the wicked.
He will wear righteousness like a belt and truth like an undergarment. In that day the wolf and the lamb will live together; the leopard will lie down with the baby goat. The calf and the yearling will be safe with the lion, and a little child will lead them all.
The cow will graze near the bear. The cub and the calf will lie down together. The lion will eat hay like a cow.
The baby will play safely near the hole of a cobra. Yes, a little child will put its hand in a nest of deadly snakes without harm.
Nothing will hurt or destroy in all my holy mountain, for as the waters fill the sea, so the earth will be filled with people who know the Lord.
In that day the heir to David’s throne
will be a banner of salvation to all the world. The nations will rally to him, and the land where he lives will be a glorious place
Isaiah 11:1-10 (NLT)
Saturday 2nd December 2017
The people who walk in darkness will see a great light. For those who live in a land of deep darkness, light will shine.
You will enlarge the nation of Israel, and its people will rejoice. They will rejoice before you as people rejoice at the harvest and like warriors dividing the plunder. For you will break the yoke of their slavery and lift the heavy burden from their shoulders. You will break the oppressor’s rod, just as you did when you destroyed the army of Midian.
The boots of the warrior and the uniforms bloodstained by war will all be burned. They will be fuel for the fire. For a child is born to us, a son is given to us. The government will rest on his shoulders. And he will be called: Wonderful Counselor Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. His government and its peace will never end. He will rule with fairness and justice from the throne of his ancestor David for all eternity. The passionate commitment of the Lord of Heaven’s Armies will make this happen! Isaiah 9:2-7 (NLT)
Friday 1st December 2017
We proclaim to you the one who existed from the beginning, whom we have heard and seen. We saw him with our own eyes and touched him with our own hands. He is the Word of life. This one who is life itself was revealed to us, and we have seen him. And now we testify and proclaim to you that he is the one who is eternal life. He was with the Father, and then he was revealed to us.
We proclaim to you what we ourselves have actually seen and heard so that you may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ.
We are writing these things so that you may fully share our joy.
This is the message we heard from Jesus and now declare to you: God is light, and there is no darkness in him at all. 1 John 1:1-5 (NLT)
Thursday 30th November 2017
Joyful are people of integrity, who follow the instructions of the Lord. Joyful are those who obey his laws and search for him with all their hearts. They do not compromise with evil, and they walk only in his paths. Psalm 119:1-2 (NLT)
Wednesday 29th November 2017
Oh, the joys of those who do not follow the advice of the wicked, or stand around with sinners, or join in with mockers. But they delight in the law of the Lord, meditating on it day and night. Psalm 1:1-2 (NLT)
Tuesday 28th November 2017
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written, “For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:35-39 (ESV)
When have you ever felt separated from the love of God? What was the reason? What do we need to understand from this passage so we may never feel that way again?
Thursday 23rd 2017
Who dares accuse us whom God has chosen for his own? No one—for God himself has given us right standing with himself. Who then will condemn us? No one—for Christ Jesus died for us and was raised to life for us, and he is sitting in the place of honour at God’s right hand, pleading for us. Romans 8:33-34 (NLT)
It really isn't about how good you are! Jesus Christ died to take away our sin. He has made us right with God. Our hope is in Him, not in our ability to never do wrong, not that we want to or plan to do anything wrong. But when we do, Jesus pleads our case and makes us right with God. Place your trust in Him and do not judge anyone else for whom Christ has died. Jesus has made us right with God. In view of that, how do you now want to live? In sin, or for Christ?
Wednesday 22nd 2017
What shall we say about such wonderful things as these? If God is for us who can ever be against us? Since He did not spare even His own Son but gave him up for us all, won't He also give us everything else? Romans 8:31-32 (NLT)
Prior to this verse Paul explains the glory that awaits all of God's children. Though living our faith might mean we suffer for a little while now, glory is for eternity. The promise of future glory is secure and conformed by the fact that God sent His Son to die for us. So there is no guarantee we will not suffer now, temporarily, but do not lose faith there is much to look forward to that will be for an eternity.
Tuesday 21st November 2017
Lead me by your truth and teach me, for you are the God who saves me. All day long I put my hope in you. Psalm 25:5 (NLT)
Truth does not change. The truth of God's Word can therefore be depended on as opposed to the theories of our existence that change every week. We must place our trust in the unchanging truth of God's Word. Because it is true, unchanging and eternal we can put our trust in Him. Do you depend on God all day long?
Monday 20th November 2017
I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world." John 16:33 (NLT)
An encouraging lesson of hope was given by Mark Anstiss yesterday. There are many trials and sorrows not only in the world but they sometimes invade our life. If God is not part of the big picture how do you cope? How do you overcome the trails and sorrows of the world without Him?
Friday 17th November 2017
Always be full of joy in the Lord. I say it again--rejoice! Phil 4:4 (NLT)
For Reflection: Is joy a choice are an emotion?
Thursday 16th November 2017
Do everything without complaining and arguing, so that no one can criticize you. Live clean, innocent lives as children of God, shining like bright lights in a world full of crooked and perverse people. Phil 2:14-15 (NLT)
I pondered if a verse that speaks of a "world full of crooked and perverse people" was too politically incorrect to include here. Then five minutes of watching TV put my fears to rest.
Wednesday 15th November 2017
Above all, you must live as citizens of heaven, conducting yourselves in a manner worthy of the Good News about Christ. Then, whether I come and see you again or only hear about you, I will know that you are standing together with one spirit and one purpose, fighting together for the faith, which is the Good News. Phil 1:27 (NLT)
For Reflection: Is our faith about living or doing? Is it more about who we are or what we do?
Tuesday 14th November2017
And I want you to know, my dear brothers and sisters, that everything that has happened to me here has helped to spread the Good News. For everyone here, including the whole palace guard, knows that I am in chains because of Christ. And because of my imprisonment, most of the believers here have gained confidence and boldly speak God’s message without fear. Philippians 1:12-14 (NLT)
For Reflection: How does Paul determine whether an event is good or bad? What criteria does he use? How is this an encouragement to others?
Monday 13th November 2017
Wednesday 8th November 2017
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Tuesday 7th November 2017
Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see. Heb 11:1
The believing Hebrews had been and were still exposed to
persecution on account of the gospel. The writer was encouraging them to remain
steadfast and strong in the face of it. Habakkuk encouraged the Jews in the
face of their enemy that the just shall live by faith. Here is the same
message. Following on he will speak of the heroes of faith who never gave up
even when faced with the severest of persecution and danger. Ultimately they have gone on to their reward.
What about us? No matter what, we must never give up our faith. No matter how
difficult life might become because we live by the gospel, we know there is something
better if we will only live by faith in what we cannot see but hope for.
Monday 6th November 2017
Thursday 2nd November 2017
The message of the cross is foolish to those who are headed for destruction! But we
who are being saved know it is the very power of God. 1 Corinthians 1:18 (NLT)
The cross and all that it represents is the greatest display
of the power of God. Note that the message of the cross is foolishness to those
who are perishing, who are heading for destruction. The lost are not in a fixed
state, they can be saved. However, we
know that sin works its way from bad to worse as sinners become more and more
perverse in their thinking. Could it be that the progression works the other
way for those who “are being saved”?
The more professing Christians, practice what
is Christ-like the more they grow. The good news is the power of the cross can
break the chains of sin and set all who put their hope in Christ on a process
of gradual and continual change for the better. Day by day, growing more and more like Christ, more completely
the conqueror of lusts and passions and evil. Those who call yourselves
Christ’s followers, are you further on than you were ten years ago; have you
advanced any further into the depths of God than when you first got a glimpse
of Him as your loving Father? Are all professing Christians growing Christians?
No one stands still, life is a process and we are in motion. Which way are you
heading? Is it towards destruction or salvation?
Wednesday 1st November 2017
Long ago God spoke many times and in many ways to our
ancestors through the prophets. And now in these final days, he has spoken to
us through his Son. God promised everything to the Son as an inheritance, and
through the Son he created the universe.
For this good news—that God has prepared this rest—has been
announced to us just as it was to them. But it did them no good because they
didn’t share the faith of those who listened to God. Hebrews 4:2
The good news is old news, it was preached in the Old
Testament. It is not a new idea that God loves us, He has always loved us. This
is old news but good news. The rest spoken of here is undoubtedly the heavenly
rest, which is for the people of God, and is the opposite to trials and
troubles of this world. Those who do not
believe, shall never enter into this spiritual rest and that is by their own
choice. God has always declared His people’s rest to be in him, and his love to
be the only real lasting happiness of the soul.
Having faith in his promises, through his Son, is the only way of
entering that rest. A way he made possible by loving us so much he gave his life to save us from our sin. That is good news indeed.
Tuesday 31st October 2017
I have stirred up a leader who will come from the north. I have called him by
name from the east. I will give him victory over kings and princes. He will
trample them as a potter treads on clay. “Who told you from the beginning that
this would happen? Who predicted this, making you admit that he was right? No
one said a word! I was the first to tell Zion, ‘Look! Help is on the way!’ I will send Jerusalem a messenger with good
news. Not one of your idols told you this. Not one gave any answer when I
asked. See, they are all foolish, worthless things. All your idols are as empty
as the wind. Isaiah 41:25-29 (NLT)
The good news is foretold. In this passage there is
good news for the captives of Israel, but where have they been looking for
help? Idols are worthless and people are so limited. In contrast to the idols who can tell nothing
of the future, the Lord knows. He knows that He will bring Cyrus from the north
to conquer the Babylonians, who conquered Judah and Jerusalem and took them
captive. God would use Cyrus to allow the Jews in exile to return (Ezra 1). Who has declared from the beginning, that we may
know? Not the idols; they know nothing. Not man, for I looked, and there was no
man . . . Who, when I asked of them, could answer a word. Indeed they are all worthless; their works are
nothing. Apart from God, in the grand scheme of things, all of the greatness of
mankind is worthless and all the great works are nothing. And what of the
idols? Their carved images are wind and confusion. Read Isaiah chapter 41 and note how many times
the Lord says “I will”. He will fulfil His promises and the good news is He
will send a Saviour. In those days it will be Cyrus to save the Jews, later it
will be Jesus Christ to save all whoever believes in Him. He will come to save
Monday 30th October 2017
That night there were shepherds staying in the fields nearby, guarding their flocks of sheep. Suddenly, an angel of the Lord appeared among them, and the radiance of the Lord’s glory surrounded them. They were terrified, but the angel reassured them. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people. The Saviour—yes, the Messiah, the Lord—has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David! Luke 2:8-11
What the world needs is good news and there is particular
good news that is needed the most. Here in these two verses the gospel, the
good news of Jesus Christ is described. The shepherds are told “do not be
afraid”, they were not going to be told something to fear but this was good
news. The promises and prophecies concerning the Messiah are now being
fulfilled and salvation will be accomplished. This was not good news to every individual; not to Herod and
his courtiers, who were troubled at it; nor to the greater part of the Jewish
nation, who when he came to them, did not receive him, but rejected him as the
Messiah; particularly not to the chief priests, Scribes, and Pharisees, who
when they saw him, said, let's kill him; but to all that were waiting for him,
and were looking for redemption in Israel; to all sinners who rejoice at his
birth, and in his salvation. What does the good news mean to you?
Sunday 29th October 2017
Jesus spoke to the people once more and said, "I am the light of the world. If you follow me, you won't have to walk in darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life." John 8:12 NLT
Nobody likes the dark nights yet the whole world is living every day in darkness. Jesus is the light of the world. How can we have the light that leads to life and not let it shine? We cannot, we must not hide what the world needs to see.
Saturday 28th October 2017
"You are the light of the world--like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden." Matthew 5:14 (NLT)
Let your light shine. Do not be afraid to stand up for what you believe. Live your life in such a way that there is no doubt you are following Christ. How will anyone find Christ in the darkness if we are not lighting the way?
Thursday 26th October 2017
Light shines on the godly and joy on those whose hearts are right. May all who are godly rejoice in the Lord and praise his holy name! Psalm 97:10-11 (NLT)
Although for a while those who follow Christ may have to
endure troublesome times they can rejoice because it is a temporary state. There
will not always be darkness, grief and pain, but God’s light assures us there
will ultimately be peace and victory. Sinners will tremble, but saints can
rejoice at God's holiness. God hates sin, yet freely loves the repentant sinner
who turns to Christ. The godly stay in
the light by hating sin, and God will be glorified. In that we can rejoice.
Wednesday 25th October 2017
“Make a lampstand of pure, hammered gold. Make the entire lampstand and its decorations of one piece—the base, centre stem, lamp cups, buds, and petals. Make it with six branches going out from the centre stem, three on each side. Exodus 25:31-31 (NLT)
There were no windows in the tabernacle. So the light from
the golden lampstand revealed the table of showbread, representing the Word of
God, and the altar of incense, representing the place of prayer, and the
cherubim on the veil to the Holy of Holies, representing guardians of the
holiness of God. These things together tell us that if we confess our sin and
accept the sacrifice given for our sin, then we can have fellowship with God. The light in the Holy Place represented Jesus Christ in all
His purity. The lesson is, as a New Testament writer tells us, God is light in
Him there is no darkness at all. Those who walk in the light can have
fellowship with Him. In the tabernacle, the light represented God, through the
Holy Spirit, shining in the darkness, producing a place of fellowship. The
light of the Word of God is the only true light and safe guide. As we walk in
the light we have fellowship with each other and with God.
Tuesday 24th October 2017
Light shines on the godly, and joy on those whose hearts are right.
Monday 23rd October 2017
Then God said, "Let there be light," and there was light . Genesis 1:3 (NLT)
spoke and it happened! As the days get shorter and we experience more darkness
we will reflect over the next few days on the light. At the beginning of
creation God spoke light into existence to dispel the darkness. The power of
God’s Word to bring light and life extends beyond the physical world and into
the spiritual realm. Anticipating the redemptive work pf the Lord Jesus Christ.
The power of the light that dispelled the darkness at creation is the same
power that dispels the darkness of sin in our hearts through the light of Jesus
at our spiritual recreation.
Saturday 21st October 2017
In his grace, God has given us different gifts for doing certain things well. So if God has given you the ability to prophesy, speak out with as much faith as God has given you. If your gift is serving others, serve them well. If you are a teacher, teach well. 8If your gift is to encourage others, be encouraging. If it is giving, give generously. If God has given you leadership ability, take the responsibility seriously. And if you have a gift for showing kindness to others, do it gladly.
Romans 12:6-8 NLT
Thursday 19th October 2017
Work with enthusiasm, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people . Ephesians 6:7 NLT
As the Ladies Day in Northampton fast approaches the theme of service will become predominant in the minds of those who attend. This verse speaks of our motivation.
Wednesday 18th October 2017
Tuesday 17th October 2017
Be merciful to me, O God, be merciful to me,
for in you my soul takes refuge;
in the shadow of your wings I will take refuge,
till the storms of destruction pass by.
Psalm 57:1 ESV
Thirty years ago last weekend a terrible storm hit Britain causing much damage and destruction. This last weekend we were told more storms were coming, for some directly in its path there was disaster, for others it was just very windy and eerie as the sun seemed to change colour. Many go about their normal life and business without any regard to God. However, when storms hit these same people suddenly wonder where God is. Well, He is where He always is. Nearby, ready to shelter you in the shadow of His wings.
Monday 16th October 2017
Then another message came to me from the Lord: “Zerubbabel is the one who laid the foundation of this Temple, and he will complete it. Then you will know that the Lord of Heaven’s Armies has sent me. Do not despise these small beginnings, for the Lord rejoices to see the work begin, to see the plumb line in Zerubbabel’s hand.”
Notice the words "Do not despise these small beginnings, for the Lord rejoices to see the work begin..." There are times when we feel we want to do some great thing for the Lord. However, its the little things that count. An act of kindness, some service to a person in need - even a cup of water. It was the widows mite that got the attention of Jesus. Faithfulness in a little thing is actually a great big thing in God's Kingdom. Let us not neglect the little things we can do in our service to God, from little acorns great oak trees grow.
Sunday 15th October 2017
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith. Because of the joy awaiting him, he endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now he is seated in the place of honour beside God’s throne. Think of all the hostility he endured from sinful people; then you won’t become weary and give up. After all, you have not yet given your lives in your struggle against sin.
Hebrews 12:1-4 NLT
Thursday 12th October 2017
I cried out, "I am slipping!" but your unfailing love, O Lord, supported me. When doubts filled my mind, your comfort gave me renewed hope and cheer.
Psalm 94:18-19 NLT
Tuesday 10th October 2017
This letter is from John, the elder. I am writing to Gaius, my dear friend, whom I love in the truth. Dear friend, I hope all is well with you and that you are as healthy in body as you are strong in spirit. Some of the traveling teachers recently returned and made me very happy by telling me about your faithfulness and that you are living according to the truth. I could have no greater joy than to hear that my children are following the truth. 3 John 1-4
Walking in the truth implies walking according to God's Word; for His Word is truth (John 17:17). Joy comes from seeing a life where Christ has been "put on". When those who follow Christ live in Him and for Him it brings joy. Why? Because when we are living right, according to His truth there is no guilt and condemnation for sin.
Monday 9th October 2017
Return, O Israel, to the Lord your God for your sins have brought you down. Bring your confessions, and return to the Lord. Say to him, “Forgive all our sins and graciously receive us, so that we may offer you our praises. Assyria cannot save us, nor can our war horses. Never again will we say to the idols we have made, ‘You are our gods. ’No, in you alone do the orphans find mercy.”
Hosea 14:1-3 NLT
We are sinking deep in sin but God's love can lift us. Whatever separates us from God is sin. To return to him then we need to turn our back on sin. This requires a determined spirit, a definite decision to do so and a godly focused mind.
A life of sin is a journey heading to sorrow and disaster so turn around and take a different path.
Friday 6th October 2017
Thursday 5th October 2017
He brought this Good News of peace to you Gentiles who were far away from him, and peace to the Jews who were near. Now all of us can come to the Father through the same Holy Spirit because of what Christ has done for us.
Ephesians 2:17-18 NLT
Tuesday 3rd October 2017
But don't be so concerned with perishable things like food. Spend your energy seeking the eternal life that the Son of Man can give you.
John 6:27 NLT
In Luke 10:38-42 we read of Mary and Martha, sisters of Lazarus who was raised from the dead by Jesus. They enjoyed the privilege of hosting Jesus during his earthly ministry. an interesting incident happened during a particular visit whereby Mary was listening to the Word of God while Martha was preparing food for their visitor. Martha could not understand the importance of nourishing the spirit over the nourishment of the body. When Martha criticised her sister for abandoning her to cook alone, Jesus Christ took the occasion to remove ignorance.
Mary's devotion becomes a model for true believers today. She was committed to real communion with Christ rather than considering the consumption of physical food. As we are doing the work of God, we should be mindful of critics of Martha.
Criticisms are made due to ignorance. Therefore try to understand issues very well before you criticise. Jesus told the people who were looking for him that they should not be interested in food or miracles that are temporary. John 6:22-17. Do not chase after perishable things at the expense of your soul.
Taken from the booklet: Daily Call.
Monday 2nd October 2017
Oh, the joys of those who do not follow the advice of the wicked,or stand around with sinners,or join in with mockers. But they delight in the law of the LORD, meditating on it day and night.
Psalm 1:1-2 NLT
We read about a rich man in Luke 12:16-21 who defined success as having material possessions. Others might say that success is having the esteem and admiration of people around them. Then still others might say that success depends more on personal satisfaction and happiness in life generally.
Jesus Christ warned against storing up possessions on earth and putting faith in money. Fortunes are easily won and more easily lost.Examples abound in society to support this fact.
Status and prestige cannot be a genuine measuring stick for success. Jesus rode triumphantly through the street of Jerusalem on a bed of palm branches. A few days later the cheers turned to jeers.
This world is not so peaceful that one can love personal satisfaction and happiness without God’s condition for blessing (Psalm 1:1) for example; a successful marriage does not mean that you are happy and satisfied all the time.
The solution is to serve God and others with your possessions and not just serve yourself. May God open our eyes to see His standards for success.
Tuesday 26th September 2017
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Image by Rachelle Galloway
Friday 22nd September 2017
Because of our faith, Christ has brought us into this place of undeserved privilege where we now stand, and we confidently and joyfully look forward to sharing God’s glory.
Romans 5:2 NLT
Thursday 21st September 2017
Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me. If you had really known me, you would know who my Father is. From now on, you do know him and have seen him!”
John 14:6-7 NLT
Wednesday 20th September 2017
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“I tell you the truth, I am the gate for the sheep. All who came before me were thieves and robbers. But the true sheep did not listen to them. Yes, I am the gate. Those who come in through me will be saved. They will come and go freely and will find good pastures. The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life.
John 10:7-10 NLT
Tuesday 19th September 2017
Your unfailing love is better than life itself; how I praise you! I will praise you as long as I live,lifting up my hands to you in prayer. You satisfy me more than the richest feast. I will praise you with songs of joy.
Psalm 63:3-5 NLT
Monday 18th, September 2017
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
Tuesday 12th, September 2017
Think about the things of heaven not the things of earth.
Wednesday 26th, July 2017
‘Ah, Lord God! Behold, You have made the heavens and the earth by Your great power and outstretched arm. There is nothing too hard for You.
Tuesday 25th, July 2017
But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; We have turned, every one, to his own way; And the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.
Monday 24th, July 2017
He is despised and rejected by men, A Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. And we hid, as it were, our faces from Him; He was despised, and we did not esteem Him. Surely He has borne our griefs And carried our sorrows; Yet we esteemed Him stricken, Smitten by God, and afflicted.
Sunday 23rd, July 2017
For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.
2 Corinthians 5:21
Saturday 22th, July 2017
For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time,
1 Timothy 2:5-6
Friday 21st, July 2017
In God is my salvation and my glory; The rock of my strength, And my refuge is in God.
Thursday 20th, July 2017
For to you it has been granted on behalf of Christ, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake,