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Failing to Listen to God

Published by InTouch Ministries for reading on August 24th.

Genesis 3:1-6 Chapter 3 1 Now the serpent was more subtle than any beast of the field which Jehovah God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of any tree of the garden? 2 And the woman said unto the serpent, Of the fruit of the trees of the garden we may eat: 3 but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die. 4 And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: 5 for God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as God, knowing good and evil. 6 And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat; and she gave also unto her husband with her, and he did eat.

Listening to God is not a one-time event. We must continually keep His Word before us, or we’ll begin to listen to the wrong voices.

In Genesis 2:16-17 16 And Jehovah God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: 17 but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die. , the Lord gave a command not to eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. But Eve began to listen to another voice and did not hold firmly to her Creator’s words. All that Satan had to do was plant a seed of doubt about God’s integrity and offer Eve one appealing advantage of doing things her own way—and she fell for it. He mentioned wisdom, but using her own reasoning, Eve added two more benefits to the temptation: the fruit is good for food and a delight to the eyes.

The schemes of the enemy have not changed. He still whispers lies and twists truth to convince us that God can’t be trusted and His ways are not the best. In every temptation, there is a deception about the character and motive of God, plus an attractive promise of a better way.

The world is filled with voices that vie for our attention and influence our thoughts and actions. Throughout the day, consider the messages that are sent your way through the media and people. Consciously begin to compare them to what Scripture says about God and His ways.

Remembering what the Lord says in His Word is our safeguard against deception and temptation. Devotions read during our quiet time won’t protect us if they’re quickly forgotten during the day. Follow Jesus Christ’s example: Be ready with truth in your mind and on your tongue whenever temptation strikes. (See Matt. 4:1-11.)

Bible in One Year: Jeremiah 51-52 Chapter 51 1 Thus saith Jehovah: Behold, I will raise up against Babylon, and against them that dwell in Leb-kamai, a destroying wind. 2 And I will send unto Babylon strangers, that shall winnow her; and they shall empty her land: for in the day of trouble they shall be against her round about. 3 Against `him that' bendeth let the archer bend his bow, and against `him that' lifteth himself up in his coat of mail: and spare ye not her young men; destroy ye utterly all her host. 4 And they shall fall down slain in the land of the Chaldeans, and thrust through in her streets. 5 For Israel is not forsaken, nor Judah, of his God, of Jehovah of hosts; though their land is full of guilt against the Holy One of Israel. 6 Flee out of the midst of Babylon, and save every man his life; be not cut off in her iniquity: for it is the time of Jehovah's vengeance; he will render unto her a recompense. 7 Babylon hath been a golden cup in Jehovah's hand, that made all the earth drunken: the nations have drunk of her wine; therefore the nations are mad. 8 Babylon is suddenly fallen and destroyed: wail for her; take balm for her pain, if so be she may be healed. 9 We would have healed Babylon, but she is not healed: forsake her, and let us go every one into his own country; for her judgment reacheth unto heaven, and is lifted up even to the skies. 10 Jehovah hath brought forth our righteousness: come, and let us declare in Zion the work of Jehovah our God. 11 Make sharp the arrows; hold firm the shields: Jehovah hath stirred up the spirit of the kings of the Medes; because his purpose is against Babylon, to destroy it: for it is the vengeance of Jehovah, the vengeance of his temple. 12 Set up a standard against the walls of Babylon, make the watch strong, set the watchmen, prepare the ambushes; for Jehovah hath both purposed and done that which he spake concerning the inhabitants of Babylon. 13 O thou that dwellest upon many waters, abundant in treasures, thine end is come, the measure of thy covetousness. 14 Jehovah of hosts hath sworn by himself, `saying', Surely I will fill thee with men, as with the canker-worm; and they shall lift up a shout against thee. 15 He hath made the earth by his power, he hath established the world by his wisdom, and by his understanding hath he stretched out the heavens: 16 when he uttereth his voice, there is a tumult of waters in the heavens, and he causeth the vapors to ascend from the ends of the earth; he maketh lightnings for the rain, and bringeth forth the wind out of his treasuries. 17 Every man is become brutish `and is' without knowledge; every goldsmith is put to shame by his image; for his molten image is falsehood, and there is no breath in them. 18 They are vanity, a work of delusion: in the time of their visitation they shall perish. 19 The portion of Jacob is not like these; for he is the former of all things; and `Israel' is the tribe of his inheritance: Jehovah of hosts is his name. 20 Thou art my battle-axe and weapons of war: and with thee will I break in pieces the nations; and with thee will I destroy kingdoms; 21 and with thee will I break in pieces the horse and his rider; 22 and with thee will I break in pieces the chariot and him that rideth therein; and with thee will I break in pieces man and woman; and with thee will I break in pieces the old man and the youth; and with thee will I break in pieces the young man and the virgin; 23 and with thee will I break in pieces the shepherd and his flock; and with thee will I break in pieces the husbandman and his yoke `of oxen'; and with thee will I break in pieces governors and deputies. 24 And I will render unto Babylon and to all the inhabitants of Chaldea all their evil that they have done in Zion in your sight, saith Jehovah. 25 Behold, I am against thee, O destroying mountain, saith Jehovah, which destroyest all the earth; and I will stretch out my hand upon thee, and roll thee down from the rocks, and will make thee a burnt mountain. 26 And they shall not take of thee a stone for a corner, nor a stone for foundations; but thou shalt be desolate for ever, saith Jehovah. 27 Set ye up a standard in the land, blow the trumpet among the nations, prepare the nations against her, call together against her the kingdoms of Ararat, Minni, and Ashkenaz: appoint a marshal against her; cause the horses to come up as the rough canker-worm. 28 Prepare against her the nations, the kings of the Medes, the governors thereof, and all the deputies thereof, and all the land of their dominion. 29 And the land trembleth and is in pain; for the purposes of Jehovah against Babylon do stand, to make the land of Babylon a desolation, without inhabitant. 30 The mighty men of Babylon have forborne to fight, they remain in their strongholds; their might hath failed; they are become as women: her dwelling-places are set on fire; her bars are broken. 31 One post shall run to meet another, and one messenger to met another, to show the king of Babylon that his city is taken on every quarter: 32 and the passages are seized, and the reeds they have burned with fire, and the men of war are affrighted. 33 For thus saith Jehovah of hosts, the God of Israel: The daughter of Babylon is like a threshing-floor at the time when it is trodden; yet a little while, and the time of harvest shall come for her. 34 Nebuchadrezzar the king of Babylon hath devoured me, he hath crushed me, he hath made me an empty vessel, he hath, like a monster, swallowed me up, he hath filled his maw with my delicacies; he hath cast me out. 35 The violence done to me and to my flesh be upon Babylon, shall the inhabitant of Zion say; and, My blood be upon the inhabitants of Chaldea, shall Jerusalem say. 36 Therefore thus saith Jehovah: Behold, I will plead thy cause, and take vengeance for thee; and I will dry up her sea, and make her fountain dry. 37 And Babylon shall become heaps, a dwelling-place for jackals, an astonishment, and a hissing, without inhabitant. 38 They shall roar together like young lions; they shall growl as lions' whelps. 39 When they are heated, I will make their feast, and I will make them drunken, that they may rejoice, and sleep a perpetual sleep, and not wake, saith Jehovah. 40 I will bring them down like lambs to the slaughter, like rams with he-goats. 41 How is Sheshach taken! and the praise of the whole earth seized! how is Babylon become a desolation among the nations! 42 The sea is come up upon Babylon; she is covered with the multitude of the waves thereof. 43 Her cities are become a desolation, a dry land, and a desert, a land wherein no man dwelleth, neither doth any son of man pass thereby. 44 And I will execute judgment upon Bel in Babylon, and I will bring forth out of his mouth that which he hath swallowed up; and the nations shall not flow any more unto him: yea, the wall of Babylon shall fall. 45 My people, go ye out of the midst of her, and save yourselves every man from the fierce anger of Jehovah. 46 And let not your heart faint, neither fear ye for the tidings that shall be heard in the land; for tidings shall come one year, and after that in another year `shall come' tidings, and violence in the land, ruler against ruler. 47 Therefore, behold, the days come, that I will execute judgment upon the graven images of Babylon; and her whole land shall be confounded; and all her slain shall fall in the midst of her. 48 Then the heavens and the earth, and all that is therein, shall sing for joy over Babylon; for the destroyers shall come unto her from the north, saith Jehovah. 49 As Babylon hath caused the slain of Israel to fall, so at Babylon shall fall the slain of all the land. 50 Ye that have escaped the sword, go ye, stand not still; remember Jehovah from afar, and let Jerusalem come into your mind. 51 We are confounded, because we have heard reproach; confusion hath covered our faces: for strangers are come into the sanctuaries of Jehovah's house. 52 Wherefore, behold, the days come, saith Jehovah, that I will execute judgment upon her graven images; and through all her land the wounded shall groan. 53 Though Babylon should mount up to heaven, and though she should fortify the height of her strength, yet from me shall destroyers come unto her, saith Jehovah. 54 The sound of a cry from Babylon, and of great destruction from the land of the Chaldeans! 55 For Jehovah layeth Babylon waste, and destroyeth out of her the great voice; and their waves roar like many waters; the noise of their voice is uttered: 56 for the destroyer is come upon her, even upon Babylon, and her mighty men are taken, their bows are broken in pieces; for Jehovah is a God of recompenses, he will surely requite. 57 And I will make drunk her princes and her wise men, her governors and her deputies, and her mighty men; and they shall sleep a perpetual sleep, and not wake, saith the King, whose name is Jehovah of hosts. 58 Thus saith Jehovah of hosts: The broad walls of Babylon shall be utterly overthrown, and her high gates shall be burned with fire; and the peoples shall labor for vanity, and the nations for the fire; and they shall be weary. 59 The word which Jeremiah the prophet commanded Seraiah the son of Neriah, the son of Mahseiah, when he went with Zedekiah the king of Judah to Babylon in the fourth year of his reign. Now Seraiah was chief chamberlain. 60 And Jeremiah wrote in a book all the evil that should come upon Babylon, even all these words that are written concerning Babylon. 61 And Jeremiah said to Seraiah, When thou comest to Babylon, then see that thou read all these words, 62 and say, O Jehovah, thou hast spoken concerning this place, to cut it off, that none shall dwell therein, neither man nor beast, but that it shall be desolate for ever. 63 And it shall be, when thou hast made an end of reading this book, that thou shalt bind a stone to it, and cast it into the midst of the Euphrates: 64 and thou shalt say, Thus shall Babylon sink, and shall not rise again because of the evil that I will bring upon her; and they shall be weary. Thus far are the words of Jeremiah. Chapter 52 1 Zedekiah was one and twenty years old when he began to reign; and he reigned eleven years in Jerusalem: and his mother's name was Hamutal the daughter of Jeremiah of Libnah. 2 And he did that which was evil in the sight of Jehovah, according to all that Jehoiakim had done. 3 For through the anger of Jehovah did it come to pass in Jerusalem and Judah, until he had cast them out from his presence. And Zedekiah rebelled against the king of Babylon. 4 And it came to pass in the ninth year of his reign, in the tenth month, in the tenth day of the month, that Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon came, he and all his army, against Jerusalem, and encamped against it; and they built forts against it round about. 5 So the city was besieged unto the eleventh year of king Zedekiah. 6 In the fourth month, in the ninth day of the month, the famine was sore in the city, so that there was no bread for the people of the land. 7 Then a breach was made in the city, and all the men of war fled, and went forth out of the city by night by the way of the gate between the two walls, which was by the king's garden; (now the Chaldeans were against the city round about;) and they went toward the Arabah. 8 But the army of the Chaldeans pursued after the king, and overtook Zedekiah in the plains of Jericho; and all his army was scattered from him. 9 Then they took the king, and carried him up unto the king of Babylon to Riblah in the land of Hamath; and he gave judgment upon him. 10 And the king of Babylon slew the sons of Zedekiah before his eyes: he slew also all the princes of Judah in Riblah. 11 And he put out the eyes of Zedekiah; and the king of Babylon bound him in fetters, and carried him to Babylon, and put him in prison till the day of his death. 12 Now in the fifth month, in the tenth day of the month, which was the nineteenth year of king Nebuchadrezzar, king of Babylon, came Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard, who stood before the king of Babylon, into Jerusalem: 13 and he burned the house of Jehovah, and the king's house; and all the houses of Jerusalem, even every great house, burned he with fire. 14 And all the army of the Chaldeans, that were with the captain of the guard, brake down all the walls of Jerusalem round about. 15 Then Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard carried away captive of the poorest of the people, and the residue of the people that were left in the city, and those that fell away, that fell to the king of Babylon, and the residue of the multitude. 16 But Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard left of the poorest of the land to be vinedressers and husbandmen. 17 And the pillars of brass that were in the house of Jehovah, and the bases and the brazen sea that were in the house of Jehovah, did the Chaldeans break in pieces, and carried all the brass of them to Babylon. 18 The pots also, and the shovels, and the snuffers, and the basins, and the spoons, and all the vessels of brass wherewith they ministered, took they away. 19 And the cups, and the firepans, and the basins, and the pots, and the candlesticks, and the spoons, and the bowls-that which was of gold, in gold, and that which was of silver, in silver,- the captain of the guard took away. 20 The two pillars, the one sea, and the twelve brazen bulls that were under the bases, which king Solomon had made for the house of Jehovah-the brass of all these vessels was without weight. 21 And as for the pillars, the height of the one pillar was eighteen cubits; and a line of twelve cubits did compass it; and the thickness thereof was four fingers: it was hollow. 22 And a capital of brass was upon it; and the height of the one capital was five cubits, with network and pomegranates upon the capital round about, all of brass: and the second pillar also had like unto these, and pomegranates. 23 And there were ninety and six pomegranates on the sides; all the pomegranates were a hundred upon the network round about. 24 And the captain of the guard took Seraiah the chief priest, and Zephaniah the second priest, and the three keepers of the threshold: 25 and out of the city he took an officer that was set over the men of war; and seven men of them that saw the king's face, that were found in the city; and the scribe of the captain of the host, who mustered the people of the land; and threescore men of the people of the land, that were found in the midst of the city. 26 And Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard took them, and brought them to the king of Babylon to Riblah. 27 And the king of Babylon smote them, and put them to death at Riblah in the land of Hamath. So Judah was carried away captive out of his land. 28 This is the people whom Nebuchadrezzar carried away captive: in the seventh year three thousand Jews and three and twenty; 29 in the eighteenth year of Nebuchadrezzar he carried away captive from Jerusalem eight hundred thirty and two persons; 30 in the three and twentieth year of Nebuchadrezzar Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard carried away captive of the Jews seven hundred forty and five persons: all the persons were four thousand and six hundred. 31 And it came to pass in the seven and thirtieth year of the captivity of Jehoiachin king of Judah, in the twelfth month, in the five and twentieth day of the month, that Evil-merodach king of Babylon, in the `first' year of his reign, lifted up the head of Jehoiachin king of Judah, and brought him forth out of prison; 32 and he spake kindly to him, and set his throne above the throne of the kings that were with him in Babylon, 33 and changed his prison garments. And `Jehoiachin' did eat bread before him continually all the days of his life: 34 and for his allowance, there was a continual allowance given him by the king of Babylon, every day a portion until the day of his death, all the days of his life.




Jesus Is Stronger Than Our Fears

Published by InTouch Ministries for reading on August 24th.

Mark 4:39 39 And he awoke, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm.

The Sea of Galilee is about eight miles wide and 13 miles long. If you’d been sitting on its shore the evening Jesus calmed the fierce gale, you might have seen ominous clouds and lightning out over the water. Experiencing a thunderstorm while watching at a distance or from the safety of your home is easy and even thrilling. But it’s another thing altogether when your boat starts rocking wildly on the waves and the rain is pelting your face. Then, what is fascinating from a distance can set off panic in your heart—panic that’s not entirely unreasonable if you’re at risk of capsizing in the middle of the sea.

In this fallen world, everyone will face storms of some sort, whether they involve physical, relational, financial, or other issues. These adversities are hard and they hurt. But they’re not the whole story of our lives, especially if we are followers of the One who calms the storm.

When troubles hit, we might find ourselves wondering, God, where are You? But He is where He’s always been; the problem is that we forget to look in the right direction.

So remember, it is Jesus whose voice commands nature, and He is also sovereign over every other type of tempest we face ( 1 John 4:4 4 Ye are of God, `my' little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you than he that is in the world. ). Knowing that we are frail in storms, He stands with us, sheltering us from the full brunt of the pounding rain and speaking peace into our heart ( Psalms 103:13-14 13 Like as a father pitieth his children, So Jehovah pitieth them that fear him. 14 For he knoweth our frame; He remembereth that we are dust. ).

A storm-tossed sea was no match for Jesus. With three words from Him, it calmed instantly. He’ll do the same for you and me every time if we just turn to Him and trust.

Bible in One Year: Jeremiah 51-52 Chapter 51 1 Thus saith Jehovah: Behold, I will raise up against Babylon, and against them that dwell in Leb-kamai, a destroying wind. 2 And I will send unto Babylon strangers, that shall winnow her; and they shall empty her land: for in the day of trouble they shall be against her round about. 3 Against `him that' bendeth let the archer bend his bow, and against `him that' lifteth himself up in his coat of mail: and spare ye not her young men; destroy ye utterly all her host. 4 And they shall fall down slain in the land of the Chaldeans, and thrust through in her streets. 5 For Israel is not forsaken, nor Judah, of his God, of Jehovah of hosts; though their land is full of guilt against the Holy One of Israel. 6 Flee out of the midst of Babylon, and save every man his life; be not cut off in her iniquity: for it is the time of Jehovah's vengeance; he will render unto her a recompense. 7 Babylon hath been a golden cup in Jehovah's hand, that made all the earth drunken: the nations have drunk of her wine; therefore the nations are mad. 8 Babylon is suddenly fallen and destroyed: wail for her; take balm for her pain, if so be she may be healed. 9 We would have healed Babylon, but she is not healed: forsake her, and let us go every one into his own country; for her judgment reacheth unto heaven, and is lifted up even to the skies. 10 Jehovah hath brought forth our righteousness: come, and let us declare in Zion the work of Jehovah our God. 11 Make sharp the arrows; hold firm the shields: Jehovah hath stirred up the spirit of the kings of the Medes; because his purpose is against Babylon, to destroy it: for it is the vengeance of Jehovah, the vengeance of his temple. 12 Set up a standard against the walls of Babylon, make the watch strong, set the watchmen, prepare the ambushes; for Jehovah hath both purposed and done that which he spake concerning the inhabitants of Babylon. 13 O thou that dwellest upon many waters, abundant in treasures, thine end is come, the measure of thy covetousness. 14 Jehovah of hosts hath sworn by himself, `saying', Surely I will fill thee with men, as with the canker-worm; and they shall lift up a shout against thee. 15 He hath made the earth by his power, he hath established the world by his wisdom, and by his understanding hath he stretched out the heavens: 16 when he uttereth his voice, there is a tumult of waters in the heavens, and he causeth the vapors to ascend from the ends of the earth; he maketh lightnings for the rain, and bringeth forth the wind out of his treasuries. 17 Every man is become brutish `and is' without knowledge; every goldsmith is put to shame by his image; for his molten image is falsehood, and there is no breath in them. 18 They are vanity, a work of delusion: in the time of their visitation they shall perish. 19 The portion of Jacob is not like these; for he is the former of all things; and `Israel' is the tribe of his inheritance: Jehovah of hosts is his name. 20 Thou art my battle-axe and weapons of war: and with thee will I break in pieces the nations; and with thee will I destroy kingdoms; 21 and with thee will I break in pieces the horse and his rider; 22 and with thee will I break in pieces the chariot and him that rideth therein; and with thee will I break in pieces man and woman; and with thee will I break in pieces the old man and the youth; and with thee will I break in pieces the young man and the virgin; 23 and with thee will I break in pieces the shepherd and his flock; and with thee will I break in pieces the husbandman and his yoke `of oxen'; and with thee will I break in pieces governors and deputies. 24 And I will render unto Babylon and to all the inhabitants of Chaldea all their evil that they have done in Zion in your sight, saith Jehovah. 25 Behold, I am against thee, O destroying mountain, saith Jehovah, which destroyest all the earth; and I will stretch out my hand upon thee, and roll thee down from the rocks, and will make thee a burnt mountain. 26 And they shall not take of thee a stone for a corner, nor a stone for foundations; but thou shalt be desolate for ever, saith Jehovah. 27 Set ye up a standard in the land, blow the trumpet among the nations, prepare the nations against her, call together against her the kingdoms of Ararat, Minni, and Ashkenaz: appoint a marshal against her; cause the horses to come up as the rough canker-worm. 28 Prepare against her the nations, the kings of the Medes, the governors thereof, and all the deputies thereof, and all the land of their dominion. 29 And the land trembleth and is in pain; for the purposes of Jehovah against Babylon do stand, to make the land of Babylon a desolation, without inhabitant. 30 The mighty men of Babylon have forborne to fight, they remain in their strongholds; their might hath failed; they are become as women: her dwelling-places are set on fire; her bars are broken. 31 One post shall run to meet another, and one messenger to met another, to show the king of Babylon that his city is taken on every quarter: 32 and the passages are seized, and the reeds they have burned with fire, and the men of war are affrighted. 33 For thus saith Jehovah of hosts, the God of Israel: The daughter of Babylon is like a threshing-floor at the time when it is trodden; yet a little while, and the time of harvest shall come for her. 34 Nebuchadrezzar the king of Babylon hath devoured me, he hath crushed me, he hath made me an empty vessel, he hath, like a monster, swallowed me up, he hath filled his maw with my delicacies; he hath cast me out. 35 The violence done to me and to my flesh be upon Babylon, shall the inhabitant of Zion say; and, My blood be upon the inhabitants of Chaldea, shall Jerusalem say. 36 Therefore thus saith Jehovah: Behold, I will plead thy cause, and take vengeance for thee; and I will dry up her sea, and make her fountain dry. 37 And Babylon shall become heaps, a dwelling-place for jackals, an astonishment, and a hissing, without inhabitant. 38 They shall roar together like young lions; they shall growl as lions' whelps. 39 When they are heated, I will make their feast, and I will make them drunken, that they may rejoice, and sleep a perpetual sleep, and not wake, saith Jehovah. 40 I will bring them down like lambs to the slaughter, like rams with he-goats. 41 How is Sheshach taken! and the praise of the whole earth seized! how is Babylon become a desolation among the nations! 42 The sea is come up upon Babylon; she is covered with the multitude of the waves thereof. 43 Her cities are become a desolation, a dry land, and a desert, a land wherein no man dwelleth, neither doth any son of man pass thereby. 44 And I will execute judgment upon Bel in Babylon, and I will bring forth out of his mouth that which he hath swallowed up; and the nations shall not flow any more unto him: yea, the wall of Babylon shall fall. 45 My people, go ye out of the midst of her, and save yourselves every man from the fierce anger of Jehovah. 46 And let not your heart faint, neither fear ye for the tidings that shall be heard in the land; for tidings shall come one year, and after that in another year `shall come' tidings, and violence in the land, ruler against ruler. 47 Therefore, behold, the days come, that I will execute judgment upon the graven images of Babylon; and her whole land shall be confounded; and all her slain shall fall in the midst of her. 48 Then the heavens and the earth, and all that is therein, shall sing for joy over Babylon; for the destroyers shall come unto her from the north, saith Jehovah. 49 As Babylon hath caused the slain of Israel to fall, so at Babylon shall fall the slain of all the land. 50 Ye that have escaped the sword, go ye, stand not still; remember Jehovah from afar, and let Jerusalem come into your mind. 51 We are confounded, because we have heard reproach; confusion hath covered our faces: for strangers are come into the sanctuaries of Jehovah's house. 52 Wherefore, behold, the days come, saith Jehovah, that I will execute judgment upon her graven images; and through all her land the wounded shall groan. 53 Though Babylon should mount up to heaven, and though she should fortify the height of her strength, yet from me shall destroyers come unto her, saith Jehovah. 54 The sound of a cry from Babylon, and of great destruction from the land of the Chaldeans! 55 For Jehovah layeth Babylon waste, and destroyeth out of her the great voice; and their waves roar like many waters; the noise of their voice is uttered: 56 for the destroyer is come upon her, even upon Babylon, and her mighty men are taken, their bows are broken in pieces; for Jehovah is a God of recompenses, he will surely requite. 57 And I will make drunk her princes and her wise men, her governors and her deputies, and her mighty men; and they shall sleep a perpetual sleep, and not wake, saith the King, whose name is Jehovah of hosts. 58 Thus saith Jehovah of hosts: The broad walls of Babylon shall be utterly overthrown, and her high gates shall be burned with fire; and the peoples shall labor for vanity, and the nations for the fire; and they shall be weary. 59 The word which Jeremiah the prophet commanded Seraiah the son of Neriah, the son of Mahseiah, when he went with Zedekiah the king of Judah to Babylon in the fourth year of his reign. Now Seraiah was chief chamberlain. 60 And Jeremiah wrote in a book all the evil that should come upon Babylon, even all these words that are written concerning Babylon. 61 And Jeremiah said to Seraiah, When thou comest to Babylon, then see that thou read all these words, 62 and say, O Jehovah, thou hast spoken concerning this place, to cut it off, that none shall dwell therein, neither man nor beast, but that it shall be desolate for ever. 63 And it shall be, when thou hast made an end of reading this book, that thou shalt bind a stone to it, and cast it into the midst of the Euphrates: 64 and thou shalt say, Thus shall Babylon sink, and shall not rise again because of the evil that I will bring upon her; and they shall be weary. Thus far are the words of Jeremiah. Chapter 52 1 Zedekiah was one and twenty years old when he began to reign; and he reigned eleven years in Jerusalem: and his mother's name was Hamutal the daughter of Jeremiah of Libnah. 2 And he did that which was evil in the sight of Jehovah, according to all that Jehoiakim had done. 3 For through the anger of Jehovah did it come to pass in Jerusalem and Judah, until he had cast them out from his presence. And Zedekiah rebelled against the king of Babylon. 4 And it came to pass in the ninth year of his reign, in the tenth month, in the tenth day of the month, that Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon came, he and all his army, against Jerusalem, and encamped against it; and they built forts against it round about. 5 So the city was besieged unto the eleventh year of king Zedekiah. 6 In the fourth month, in the ninth day of the month, the famine was sore in the city, so that there was no bread for the people of the land. 7 Then a breach was made in the city, and all the men of war fled, and went forth out of the city by night by the way of the gate between the two walls, which was by the king's garden; (now the Chaldeans were against the city round about;) and they went toward the Arabah. 8 But the army of the Chaldeans pursued after the king, and overtook Zedekiah in the plains of Jericho; and all his army was scattered from him. 9 Then they took the king, and carried him up unto the king of Babylon to Riblah in the land of Hamath; and he gave judgment upon him. 10 And the king of Babylon slew the sons of Zedekiah before his eyes: he slew also all the princes of Judah in Riblah. 11 And he put out the eyes of Zedekiah; and the king of Babylon bound him in fetters, and carried him to Babylon, and put him in prison till the day of his death. 12 Now in the fifth month, in the tenth day of the month, which was the nineteenth year of king Nebuchadrezzar, king of Babylon, came Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard, who stood before the king of Babylon, into Jerusalem: 13 and he burned the house of Jehovah, and the king's house; and all the houses of Jerusalem, even every great house, burned he with fire. 14 And all the army of the Chaldeans, that were with the captain of the guard, brake down all the walls of Jerusalem round about. 15 Then Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard carried away captive of the poorest of the people, and the residue of the people that were left in the city, and those that fell away, that fell to the king of Babylon, and the residue of the multitude. 16 But Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard left of the poorest of the land to be vinedressers and husbandmen. 17 And the pillars of brass that were in the house of Jehovah, and the bases and the brazen sea that were in the house of Jehovah, did the Chaldeans break in pieces, and carried all the brass of them to Babylon. 18 The pots also, and the shovels, and the snuffers, and the basins, and the spoons, and all the vessels of brass wherewith they ministered, took they away. 19 And the cups, and the firepans, and the basins, and the pots, and the candlesticks, and the spoons, and the bowls-that which was of gold, in gold, and that which was of silver, in silver,- the captain of the guard took away. 20 The two pillars, the one sea, and the twelve brazen bulls that were under the bases, which king Solomon had made for the house of Jehovah-the brass of all these vessels was without weight. 21 And as for the pillars, the height of the one pillar was eighteen cubits; and a line of twelve cubits did compass it; and the thickness thereof was four fingers: it was hollow. 22 And a capital of brass was upon it; and the height of the one capital was five cubits, with network and pomegranates upon the capital round about, all of brass: and the second pillar also had like unto these, and pomegranates. 23 And there were ninety and six pomegranates on the sides; all the pomegranates were a hundred upon the network round about. 24 And the captain of the guard took Seraiah the chief priest, and Zephaniah the second priest, and the three keepers of the threshold: 25 and out of the city he took an officer that was set over the men of war; and seven men of them that saw the king's face, that were found in the city; and the scribe of the captain of the host, who mustered the people of the land; and threescore men of the people of the land, that were found in the midst of the city. 26 And Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard took them, and brought them to the king of Babylon to Riblah. 27 And the king of Babylon smote them, and put them to death at Riblah in the land of Hamath. So Judah was carried away captive out of his land. 28 This is the people whom Nebuchadrezzar carried away captive: in the seventh year three thousand Jews and three and twenty; 29 in the eighteenth year of Nebuchadrezzar he carried away captive from Jerusalem eight hundred thirty and two persons; 30 in the three and twentieth year of Nebuchadrezzar Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard carried away captive of the Jews seven hundred forty and five persons: all the persons were four thousand and six hundred. 31 And it came to pass in the seven and thirtieth year of the captivity of Jehoiachin king of Judah, in the twelfth month, in the five and twentieth day of the month, that Evil-merodach king of Babylon, in the `first' year of his reign, lifted up the head of Jehoiachin king of Judah, and brought him forth out of prison; 32 and he spake kindly to him, and set his throne above the throne of the kings that were with him in Babylon, 33 and changed his prison garments. And `Jehoiachin' did eat bread before him continually all the days of his life: 34 and for his allowance, there was a continual allowance given him by the king of Babylon, every day a portion until the day of his death, all the days of his life.




The Message of Creation

Published by John Piper for reading on August 24th.

Claiming to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things. ( Romans 1:22 22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, –23)

It would be a great folly and a great tragedy if a man loved his wedding band more than he loved his bride. But that is what this passage says has happened.

Human beings have fallen in love with the echo of God’s excellency in creation and lost the ability to hear the incomparable, original shout of love.

The message of creation is this:

There is a great God of glory and power and generosity behind all this awesome universe; you belong to him; he is patient with you in sustaining your rebellious life; turn and bank your hope on him and delight yourself in him, not his handiwork.

Day pours forth the “speech” of that message to all who will listen in the day, speaking with blindingly bright sun and blue sky and clouds and untold shapes and colors of all things visible. Night pours forth the “knowledge” of the same message to all who will listen at night, speaking with great dark voids and summer moons and countless stars and strange sounds and cool breezes and northern lights ( Psalms 19:1 Chapter 19 1 The heavens declare the glory of God; And the firmament showeth his handiwork. –2).

Day and night are saying one thing: God is glorious! God is glorious! God is glorious!



The Savior’s Mission

Published by InTouch Ministries for reading on August 24th.

John 14:6 6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, and the truth, and the life: no one cometh unto the Father, but by me.

Many believers know Jesus Christ is the Son of God, but we should also understand His mission, how He fulfilled it, and what that means to each of us. Christ had a twofold goal in coming to earth: to provide us with a tangible image of who God is, and to die in our place to pay our penalty for sin.

What an incredible plan! The omnipotent, omniscient Lord had existed since eternity past ( John 1:1 Chapter 1 1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. ; John 8:58 58 Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was born, I am. ). Yet for a time, He set aside power and strength that were rightfully His, so that He could become like us. Because God-in-human-flesh lived His life before men, we can better understand our heavenly Father (Col. 1:15).

Through Christ’s sacrifice, we are invited into an eternal relationship with God. You see, Scripture teaches that every descendant of Adam is guilty of sin (Isa. 53:6; Rom. 3:23), and the punishment is death (Rom. 6:23). The penalty must be paid by the shedding of blood (Lev. 17:11). Yet the Father can accept nothing less than a perfect sacrifice (Deut. 17:1). The Savior—who was fully God, fully man, and 100 percent innocent—died a humiliating, excruciating death to pay the debt we couldn’t afford. He is the only one who could lay down His life to save us and bridge the gap between each person and the Father.

There is no possible way for us to earn our salvation. It is an awesome gift that the Father freely offers to each one of us. The only requirement is that we receive Jesus Christ as our personal Savior and follow Him. Have you chosen to accept this amazing blessing from the Father’s hand?

Bible in One Year: Jeremiah 51-52 Chapter 51 1 Thus saith Jehovah: Behold, I will raise up against Babylon, and against them that dwell in Leb-kamai, a destroying wind. 2 And I will send unto Babylon strangers, that shall winnow her; and they shall empty her land: for in the day of trouble they shall be against her round about. 3 Against `him that' bendeth let the archer bend his bow, and against `him that' lifteth himself up in his coat of mail: and spare ye not her young men; destroy ye utterly all her host. 4 And they shall fall down slain in the land of the Chaldeans, and thrust through in her streets. 5 For Israel is not forsaken, nor Judah, of his God, of Jehovah of hosts; though their land is full of guilt against the Holy One of Israel. 6 Flee out of the midst of Babylon, and save every man his life; be not cut off in her iniquity: for it is the time of Jehovah's vengeance; he will render unto her a recompense. 7 Babylon hath been a golden cup in Jehovah's hand, that made all the earth drunken: the nations have drunk of her wine; therefore the nations are mad. 8 Babylon is suddenly fallen and destroyed: wail for her; take balm for her pain, if so be she may be healed. 9 We would have healed Babylon, but she is not healed: forsake her, and let us go every one into his own country; for her judgment reacheth unto heaven, and is lifted up even to the skies. 10 Jehovah hath brought forth our righteousness: come, and let us declare in Zion the work of Jehovah our God. 11 Make sharp the arrows; hold firm the shields: Jehovah hath stirred up the spirit of the kings of the Medes; because his purpose is against Babylon, to destroy it: for it is the vengeance of Jehovah, the vengeance of his temple. 12 Set up a standard against the walls of Babylon, make the watch strong, set the watchmen, prepare the ambushes; for Jehovah hath both purposed and done that which he spake concerning the inhabitants of Babylon. 13 O thou that dwellest upon many waters, abundant in treasures, thine end is come, the measure of thy covetousness. 14 Jehovah of hosts hath sworn by himself, `saying', Surely I will fill thee with men, as with the canker-worm; and they shall lift up a shout against thee. 15 He hath made the earth by his power, he hath established the world by his wisdom, and by his understanding hath he stretched out the heavens: 16 when he uttereth his voice, there is a tumult of waters in the heavens, and he causeth the vapors to ascend from the ends of the earth; he maketh lightnings for the rain, and bringeth forth the wind out of his treasuries. 17 Every man is become brutish `and is' without knowledge; every goldsmith is put to shame by his image; for his molten image is falsehood, and there is no breath in them. 18 They are vanity, a work of delusion: in the time of their visitation they shall perish. 19 The portion of Jacob is not like these; for he is the former of all things; and `Israel' is the tribe of his inheritance: Jehovah of hosts is his name. 20 Thou art my battle-axe and weapons of war: and with thee will I break in pieces the nations; and with thee will I destroy kingdoms; 21 and with thee will I break in pieces the horse and his rider; 22 and with thee will I break in pieces the chariot and him that rideth therein; and with thee will I break in pieces man and woman; and with thee will I break in pieces the old man and the youth; and with thee will I break in pieces the young man and the virgin; 23 and with thee will I break in pieces the shepherd and his flock; and with thee will I break in pieces the husbandman and his yoke `of oxen'; and with thee will I break in pieces governors and deputies. 24 And I will render unto Babylon and to all the inhabitants of Chaldea all their evil that they have done in Zion in your sight, saith Jehovah. 25 Behold, I am against thee, O destroying mountain, saith Jehovah, which destroyest all the earth; and I will stretch out my hand upon thee, and roll thee down from the rocks, and will make thee a burnt mountain. 26 And they shall not take of thee a stone for a corner, nor a stone for foundations; but thou shalt be desolate for ever, saith Jehovah. 27 Set ye up a standard in the land, blow the trumpet among the nations, prepare the nations against her, call together against her the kingdoms of Ararat, Minni, and Ashkenaz: appoint a marshal against her; cause the horses to come up as the rough canker-worm. 28 Prepare against her the nations, the kings of the Medes, the governors thereof, and all the deputies thereof, and all the land of their dominion. 29 And the land trembleth and is in pain; for the purposes of Jehovah against Babylon do stand, to make the land of Babylon a desolation, without inhabitant. 30 The mighty men of Babylon have forborne to fight, they remain in their strongholds; their might hath failed; they are become as women: her dwelling-places are set on fire; her bars are broken. 31 One post shall run to meet another, and one messenger to met another, to show the king of Babylon that his city is taken on every quarter: 32 and the passages are seized, and the reeds they have burned with fire, and the men of war are affrighted. 33 For thus saith Jehovah of hosts, the God of Israel: The daughter of Babylon is like a threshing-floor at the time when it is trodden; yet a little while, and the time of harvest shall come for her. 34 Nebuchadrezzar the king of Babylon hath devoured me, he hath crushed me, he hath made me an empty vessel, he hath, like a monster, swallowed me up, he hath filled his maw with my delicacies; he hath cast me out. 35 The violence done to me and to my flesh be upon Babylon, shall the inhabitant of Zion say; and, My blood be upon the inhabitants of Chaldea, shall Jerusalem say. 36 Therefore thus saith Jehovah: Behold, I will plead thy cause, and take vengeance for thee; and I will dry up her sea, and make her fountain dry. 37 And Babylon shall become heaps, a dwelling-place for jackals, an astonishment, and a hissing, without inhabitant. 38 They shall roar together like young lions; they shall growl as lions' whelps. 39 When they are heated, I will make their feast, and I will make them drunken, that they may rejoice, and sleep a perpetual sleep, and not wake, saith Jehovah. 40 I will bring them down like lambs to the slaughter, like rams with he-goats. 41 How is Sheshach taken! and the praise of the whole earth seized! how is Babylon become a desolation among the nations! 42 The sea is come up upon Babylon; she is covered with the multitude of the waves thereof. 43 Her cities are become a desolation, a dry land, and a desert, a land wherein no man dwelleth, neither doth any son of man pass thereby. 44 And I will execute judgment upon Bel in Babylon, and I will bring forth out of his mouth that which he hath swallowed up; and the nations shall not flow any more unto him: yea, the wall of Babylon shall fall. 45 My people, go ye out of the midst of her, and save yourselves every man from the fierce anger of Jehovah. 46 And let not your heart faint, neither fear ye for the tidings that shall be heard in the land; for tidings shall come one year, and after that in another year `shall come' tidings, and violence in the land, ruler against ruler. 47 Therefore, behold, the days come, that I will execute judgment upon the graven images of Babylon; and her whole land shall be confounded; and all her slain shall fall in the midst of her. 48 Then the heavens and the earth, and all that is therein, shall sing for joy over Babylon; for the destroyers shall come unto her from the north, saith Jehovah. 49 As Babylon hath caused the slain of Israel to fall, so at Babylon shall fall the slain of all the land. 50 Ye that have escaped the sword, go ye, stand not still; remember Jehovah from afar, and let Jerusalem come into your mind. 51 We are confounded, because we have heard reproach; confusion hath covered our faces: for strangers are come into the sanctuaries of Jehovah's house. 52 Wherefore, behold, the days come, saith Jehovah, that I will execute judgment upon her graven images; and through all her land the wounded shall groan. 53 Though Babylon should mount up to heaven, and though she should fortify the height of her strength, yet from me shall destroyers come unto her, saith Jehovah. 54 The sound of a cry from Babylon, and of great destruction from the land of the Chaldeans! 55 For Jehovah layeth Babylon waste, and destroyeth out of her the great voice; and their waves roar like many waters; the noise of their voice is uttered: 56 for the destroyer is come upon her, even upon Babylon, and her mighty men are taken, their bows are broken in pieces; for Jehovah is a God of recompenses, he will surely requite. 57 And I will make drunk her princes and her wise men, her governors and her deputies, and her mighty men; and they shall sleep a perpetual sleep, and not wake, saith the King, whose name is Jehovah of hosts. 58 Thus saith Jehovah of hosts: The broad walls of Babylon shall be utterly overthrown, and her high gates shall be burned with fire; and the peoples shall labor for vanity, and the nations for the fire; and they shall be weary. 59 The word which Jeremiah the prophet commanded Seraiah the son of Neriah, the son of Mahseiah, when he went with Zedekiah the king of Judah to Babylon in the fourth year of his reign. Now Seraiah was chief chamberlain. 60 And Jeremiah wrote in a book all the evil that should come upon Babylon, even all these words that are written concerning Babylon. 61 And Jeremiah said to Seraiah, When thou comest to Babylon, then see that thou read all these words, 62 and say, O Jehovah, thou hast spoken concerning this place, to cut it off, that none shall dwell therein, neither man nor beast, but that it shall be desolate for ever. 63 And it shall be, when thou hast made an end of reading this book, that thou shalt bind a stone to it, and cast it into the midst of the Euphrates: 64 and thou shalt say, Thus shall Babylon sink, and shall not rise again because of the evil that I will bring upon her; and they shall be weary. Thus far are the words of Jeremiah. Chapter 52 1 Zedekiah was one and twenty years old when he began to reign; and he reigned eleven years in Jerusalem: and his mother's name was Hamutal the daughter of Jeremiah of Libnah. 2 And he did that which was evil in the sight of Jehovah, according to all that Jehoiakim had done. 3 For through the anger of Jehovah did it come to pass in Jerusalem and Judah, until he had cast them out from his presence. And Zedekiah rebelled against the king of Babylon. 4 And it came to pass in the ninth year of his reign, in the tenth month, in the tenth day of the month, that Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon came, he and all his army, against Jerusalem, and encamped against it; and they built forts against it round about. 5 So the city was besieged unto the eleventh year of king Zedekiah. 6 In the fourth month, in the ninth day of the month, the famine was sore in the city, so that there was no bread for the people of the land. 7 Then a breach was made in the city, and all the men of war fled, and went forth out of the city by night by the way of the gate between the two walls, which was by the king's garden; (now the Chaldeans were against the city round about;) and they went toward the Arabah. 8 But the army of the Chaldeans pursued after the king, and overtook Zedekiah in the plains of Jericho; and all his army was scattered from him. 9 Then they took the king, and carried him up unto the king of Babylon to Riblah in the land of Hamath; and he gave judgment upon him. 10 And the king of Babylon slew the sons of Zedekiah before his eyes: he slew also all the princes of Judah in Riblah. 11 And he put out the eyes of Zedekiah; and the king of Babylon bound him in fetters, and carried him to Babylon, and put him in prison till the day of his death. 12 Now in the fifth month, in the tenth day of the month, which was the nineteenth year of king Nebuchadrezzar, king of Babylon, came Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard, who stood before the king of Babylon, into Jerusalem: 13 and he burned the house of Jehovah, and the king's house; and all the houses of Jerusalem, even every great house, burned he with fire. 14 And all the army of the Chaldeans, that were with the captain of the guard, brake down all the walls of Jerusalem round about. 15 Then Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard carried away captive of the poorest of the people, and the residue of the people that were left in the city, and those that fell away, that fell to the king of Babylon, and the residue of the multitude. 16 But Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard left of the poorest of the land to be vinedressers and husbandmen. 17 And the pillars of brass that were in the house of Jehovah, and the bases and the brazen sea that were in the house of Jehovah, did the Chaldeans break in pieces, and carried all the brass of them to Babylon. 18 The pots also, and the shovels, and the snuffers, and the basins, and the spoons, and all the vessels of brass wherewith they ministered, took they away. 19 And the cups, and the firepans, and the basins, and the pots, and the candlesticks, and the spoons, and the bowls-that which was of gold, in gold, and that which was of silver, in silver,- the captain of the guard took away. 20 The two pillars, the one sea, and the twelve brazen bulls that were under the bases, which king Solomon had made for the house of Jehovah-the brass of all these vessels was without weight. 21 And as for the pillars, the height of the one pillar was eighteen cubits; and a line of twelve cubits did compass it; and the thickness thereof was four fingers: it was hollow. 22 And a capital of brass was upon it; and the height of the one capital was five cubits, with network and pomegranates upon the capital round about, all of brass: and the second pillar also had like unto these, and pomegranates. 23 And there were ninety and six pomegranates on the sides; all the pomegranates were a hundred upon the network round about. 24 And the captain of the guard took Seraiah the chief priest, and Zephaniah the second priest, and the three keepers of the threshold: 25 and out of the city he took an officer that was set over the men of war; and seven men of them that saw the king's face, that were found in the city; and the scribe of the captain of the host, who mustered the people of the land; and threescore men of the people of the land, that were found in the midst of the city. 26 And Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard took them, and brought them to the king of Babylon to Riblah. 27 And the king of Babylon smote them, and put them to death at Riblah in the land of Hamath. So Judah was carried away captive out of his land. 28 This is the people whom Nebuchadrezzar carried away captive: in the seventh year three thousand Jews and three and twenty; 29 in the eighteenth year of Nebuchadrezzar he carried away captive from Jerusalem eight hundred thirty and two persons; 30 in the three and twentieth year of Nebuchadrezzar Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard carried away captive of the Jews seven hundred forty and five persons: all the persons were four thousand and six hundred. 31 And it came to pass in the seven and thirtieth year of the captivity of Jehoiachin king of Judah, in the twelfth month, in the five and twentieth day of the month, that Evil-merodach king of Babylon, in the `first' year of his reign, lifted up the head of Jehoiachin king of Judah, and brought him forth out of prison; 32 and he spake kindly to him, and set his throne above the throne of the kings that were with him in Babylon, 33 and changed his prison garments. And `Jehoiachin' did eat bread before him continually all the days of his life: 34 and for his allowance, there was a continual allowance given him by the king of Babylon, every day a portion until the day of his death, all the days of his life.




Daily Bible - August 24

Published by Grace To You for reading on August 24th.

Reading for Today:

  • Job 39:1 Chapter 39 1 Knowest thou the time when the wild goats of the rock bring forth? `Or' canst thou mark when the hinds do calve? –40:24
  • Psalms 101:1-4 Chapter 101 1 I will sing of lovingkindness and justice: Unto thee, O Jehovah, will I sing praises. 2 I will behave myself wisely in a perfect way: Oh when wilt thou come unto me? I will walk within my house with a perfect heart. 3 I will set no base thing before mine eyes: I hate the work of them that turn aside; It shall not cleave unto me. 4 A perverse heart shall depart from me: I will know no evil thing.
  • Proverbs 23:29-30 29 Who hath woe? who hath sorrow? who hath contentions? Who hath complaining? who hath wounds without cause? Who hath redness of eyes? 30 They that tarry long at the wine; They that go to seek out mixed wine.
  • 1 Corinthians 6:1-20 Chapter 6 1 Dare any of you, having a matter against his neighbor, go to law before the unrighteous, and not before the saints? 2 Or know ye not that the saints shall judge the world? and if the world is judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters? 3 Know ye not that we shall judge angels? how much more, things that pertain to this life? 4 If then ye have to judge things pertaining to this life, do ye set them to judge who are of no account in the church? 5 I say `this' to move you to shame. What, cannot there be `found' among you one wise man who shall be able to decide between his brethren, 6 but brother goeth to law with brother, and that before unbelievers? 7 Nay, already it is altogether a defect in you, that ye have lawsuits one with another. Why not rather take wrong? why not rather be defrauded? 8 Nay, but ye yourselves do wrong, and defraud, and that `your' brethren. 9 Or know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with men, 10 nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. 11 And such were some of you: but ye were washed, but ye were sanctified, but ye were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, and in the Spirit of our God. 12 All things are lawful for me; but not all things are expedient. All things are lawful for me; but I will not be brought under the power of any. 13 Meats for the belly, and the belly for meats: but God shall bring to nought both it and them. But the body is not for fornication, but for the Lord; and the Lord for the body: 14 and God both raised the Lord, and will raise up as through his power. 15 Know ye not that your bodies are members of Christ? shall I then take away the members of Christ, and make them members of a harlot? God forbid. 16 Or know ye not that he that is joined to a harlot is one body? for, The twain, saith he, shall become one flesh. 17 But he that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit. 18 Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body. 19 Or know ye not that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit which is in you, which ye have from God? and ye are not your own; 20 for ye were bought with a price: glorify God therefore in your body.

Notes:

Job 40:15 15 Behold now, behemoth, which I made as well as thee; He eateth grass as an ox. –24 behemoth. While this is a generic term used commonly in the Old Testament for large cattle or land animals, the description in this passage suggests an extraordinary creature. The hippopotamus has been suggested by the details in the passage (vv. 19–24). However, the short tail of a hippo is hardly consistent with v. 17, where tail could be translated “trunk.” It could refer to an elephant, who could be considered “first” or chief of God’s creatures whom only He can control (v. 19). Some believe God is describing His most impressive creation of land animals, the dinosaur species, which fit all the characteristics.

Psalm 101:2 perfect way. As the king goes, so go his followers (v. 6). when will You come to me? This is not an eschatological expectation, but rather a personal expression of David’s need for God’s immanent involvement in his earthly kingship. my house. The king first starts with his own personal life (v. 7) and then looks beyond to his kingdom (vv. 5, 8).

Proverbs 23:30 30 They that tarry long at the wine; They that go to seek out mixed wine. mixed wine. Lingering long at the wine is indicative of constant drinking so as to induce drunkenness (1 Tim. 3:3; Titus 1:7 7 For the bishop must be blameless, as God's steward; not self-willed, not soon angry, no brawler, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; ). Searching for more to drink indicates the same pursuit.

1 Corinthians 6:2 2 Or know ye not that the saints shall judge the world? and if the world is judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters? judge the world. Because Christians will assist Christ to judge the world in the millennial kingdom (Rev. 2:26, 27; 3:21; Dan. 7:22), they are more than qualified with the truth, the Spirit, the gifts, and the resources they presently have in Him to settle small matters that come up among themselves in this present life.

1 Corinthians 6:15 15 Know ye not that your bodies are members of Christ? shall I then take away the members of Christ, and make them members of a harlot? God forbid. members. The believer’s body is not only for the Lord here and now (v. 14) but is of the Lord, a part of His body, the church (Eph.1:22, 23). The Christian’s body is a spiritual temple in which the Spirit of Christ lives (12:3; John 7:38 38 He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, from within him shall flow rivers of living water. , 39; 20:22; Acts 1:8 8 But ye shall receive power, when the Holy Spirit is come upon you: and ye shall be my witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea and Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth. ; Rom. 8:9; 2 Cor. 6:16); therefore, when a believer commits a sexual sin, it involves Christ with a harlot. All sexual sin is harlotry. Certainly not! These words translate the strongest Greek negative—“may it never be so.”

DAY 24: Who does Paul list among those who will not inherit God’s kingdom?

First Corinthians 6:9,10 provides a list of people who will “not inherit the kingdom.” The kingdom is the spiritual sphere of salvation where God rules as king over all who belong to Him by faith. All believers are in that spiritual kingdom, yet are waiting to enter into the full inheritance of it in the age to come. While believers can and do commit these sins, they do not characterize them as an unbroken life pattern. When they do, it demonstrates that the person is not in God’s kingdom. True believers who do sin, repent of that sin and seek to gain the victory over it (Rom. 7:14–25).

“Fornicators.” All who indulge in sexual immorality, but particularly unmarried persons. “Idolaters.” Those who worship any false god or follow any false religious system. “Adulterers.” Married persons who indulge in sexual acts outside their marriage. “Homosexuals…sodomites.” These terms refer to those who exchange and corrupt normal male-female sexual roles and relations. Transvestism, sex changes, and other gender perversions are included (Gen. 1:27; Deut. 22:5). Sodomites are so-called because the sin of male-male sex dominated the city of Sodom (Gen. 18:20; 19:4, 5). This sinful perversion is condemned always, in any form, by Scripture (Lev. 18:22; 20:13; Rom.1:26, 27; 1 Tim. 1:10).

“Thieves…covetous.” Both are guilty of the same basic sin of greed. Those who are covetous desire what belongs to others; thieves actually take it. “Revilers.” People who try to destroy others with words. “Extortioners.” Swindlers and embezzlers who steal indirectly, taking unfair advantage of others for their own financial gain.

Paul reminds the Corinthians that “such were some of you” (v. 11). Though not all Christians have been guilty of all those particular sins, every Christian is equally an ex-sinner, since Christ came to save sinners (Matt. 9:13; Rom. 5:20).

From The MacArthur Daily Bible Copyright © 2003. Used by permission of Thomas Nelson Bibles, a division of Thomas Nelson, Inc, Nashville, TN 37214, www.thomasnelson.com.

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August 24 - The Redemptive Element of Jesus’ Impartial Healings

Published by Grace To You for reading on August 24th.

“‘Your faith has made you well’” ( Matthew 9:22 22 But Jesus turning and seeing her said, Daughter, be of good cheer; thy faith hath made thee whole. And the woman was made whole from that hour. ).

In many instances in the gospels, the words translated “healed,” “made well,” or similar variations, are from the Greek word meaning salvation or saved from sin. For instance, when blind Bartimaeus came to Jesus to regain his sight, the Lord told him, “Go; your faith has made you well” ( Mark 10:52 52 And Jesus said unto him, Go thy way; thy faith hath made thee whole. And straightway he received his sight, and followed him in the way. ). That Bartimaeus repeatedly called Jesus “Son of David,” a common messianic title, suggests that his physical healing included spiritual salvation.

In the account of the ten lepers, Luke reports that all of them “were cleansed” ( Luke 17:14 14 And when he saw them, he said unto them, Go and show yourselves unto the priests. And it came to pass, as they went, they were cleansed. ), but this was from a word that means essentially physical cleansing. However, of the one who glorified God and returned to give thanks, Jesus used the same expression (see v. 19) as He did to Bartimaeus and the woman with the hemorrhage. Ten men received cleansing, but only one obtained salvation. This indicates that salvation and physical healing were sometimes linked, even if in the example of the ten lepers, only one man realized both.

In addition to a strong redemptive element, Jesus’ healings were impartial. That Christ ministered equally to the leading synagogue elder and the outcast woman clearly proves this. The woman’s touching His garment with unclean hands did not offend Him. Nor did her presumption to obtain His help while He worked through the crowd to reach Jairus’s daughter bother Him. True needs never interfered with our Lord’s sovereign and impartial approach to ministry. “The Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many” (Matt. 20:28).

Ask Yourself

Would you describe your feelings and interactions with others as being impartial? Are there people who (though you might never admit it aloud) are considered beneath you and unworthy of your notice and attention? Confess this as sin before the Father, and model Jesus’ brand of ministry.

From Daily Readings from the Life of Christ, Vol. 1, John MacArthur. Copyright © 2008. Used by permission of Moody Publishers, Chicago, IL 60610, www.moodypublishers.com.

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The Sin of Worry

Published by Grace To You for reading on August 24th.

“‘Do not be anxious for your life, as to what you shall eat, or what you shall drink; nor for your body, as to what you shall put on’” ( Matthew 6:25 25 Therefore I say unto you, be not anxious for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than the food, and the body than the raiment? ).

To worry about the future is to sin against God.

Someone has said, “You can’t change the past, but you can ruin a perfectly good present by worrying about the future.” Worry does ruin the present, but even more important for the believer is to recognize that worry is sin. Let’s look at why that is so.

Worry means you are striking out at God. Someone might say, “Worry is a small, trivial sin.” But that’s not true. More important than what worry does to you is what it does to God. When you worry, you are saying in effect, “God, I just don’t think I can trust You.” Worry strikes a blow at God’s integrity and love for you.

Worry means you are disbelieving Scripture. You can say, “I believe in the inerrancy of Scripture. I believe in the verbal, plenary inspiration of every word,” and then just live your life worrying. You are saying you believe the Bible, but then worry about God fulfilling what He says in it.

Worry means you are being mastered by circumstances. Let the truths of God’s Word, not your circumstances, control your thinking. By worrying, you make the circumstances and trials of life a bigger issue than your salvation. If you believe God can save you from eternal Hell, also believe He can help you in this world as He has promised.

Worry means you are distrusting God. If you worry, you’re not trusting your Heavenly Father. And if you’re not trusting Him, perhaps it’s because you don’t know Him well enough. Study God’s Word to find out who He really is and how He has been faithful to supply the needs of His people in the past. Doing so will help give you confidence for the future. Allow His Word to indwell you richly so that you aren’t making yourself vulnerable to Satan’s temptations to worry.

Suggestions for Prayer

Review the four points given above, and confess any sin to God.

For Further Study

Read Psalms 55:22 22 Cast thy burden upon Jehovah, and he will sustain thee: He will never suffer the righteous to be moved. ; 1 Peter 5:7 7 casting all your anxiety upon him, because he careth for you. . What antidote to worry do both verses give?

From Strength for Today by John MacArthur Copyright © 1997. Used by permission of Crossway Books, a division of Good News Publishers, Wheaton, IL 60187, www.crossway.com.

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Covering Sin

Published by Grace To You for reading on August 24th.

"[Love] bears all things" (1 Cor. 13:7).

Love confronts sin but protects the sinner.

In 1 Corinthians 13:7 7 beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. Paul mentions four qualities of love that are closely related: bearing all things, believing all things, hoping all things, and enduring all things. That might sound like love is indiscriminate and accepting of anything that comes along, but "all things" in that verse is qualified by the context. Love rejects jealousy, bragging, arrogance, and so on (vv. 4-6), but it bears, believes, hopes, and endures all things that are within the parameters of God's Word.

"Love bears all things" speaks of love's willingness to cover sins and protect sinners from further harm. That's opposite our tabloid-mentality society in which gossip is big business and people seemingly have an insatiable appetite for exposes and "true confessions."

Love seeks to protect, not expose. It confronts and disciplines sin but never broadcasts failures or wrongs. It feels the pain of those it loves and is willing to take that pain upon itself when necessary—as Christ did when He suffered for our sins.

In the Old Testament, the mercy seat was the place where the blood of atonement was sprinkled to cover the sins of the people (Lev. 16:14). That covering prefigured the perfect covering of sin that Christ brought through His death on the cross (Rom. 3:25-26). All who trust in Him are forever covered with the mantle of God's love.

You cannot cover sins in the redemptive sense, but you can help protect and restore its victims. Proverbs 10:12 12 Hatred stirreth up strifes; But love covereth all transgressions. says, "Hatred stirs up strife, but love covers all transgressions." First Peter 4:8 says, "Above all, keep fervent in your love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins."

When you hear of someone's sin, what is your first reaction? Do you think the worst of him or even gloat over his failures? Or do you expect the best and want to protect him from further exposure, ridicule, or harm? Are you willing to confront sin when necessary and even help bear the burden that person might be carrying? How you react indicates the quality of your love.

Suggestions for Prayer

  • Thank God for covering your sins with Christ's blood.
  • Commit yourself to loving others in a way that truly bears all things.

For Further Study

Read Isaiah 53:3-12 3 He was despised, and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and as one from whom men hide their face he was despised; and we esteemed him not. 4 Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows; yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. 5 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. 6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and Jehovah hath laid on him the iniquity of us all. 7 He was oppressed, yet when he was afflicted he opened not his mouth; as a lamb that is led to the slaughter, and as a sheep that before its shearers is dumb, so he opened not his mouth. 8 By oppression and judgment he was taken away; and as for his generation, who `among them' considered that he was cut off out of the land of the living for the transgression of my people to whom the stroke `was due'? 9 And they made his grave with the wicked, and with a rich man in his death; although he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth. 10 Yet it pleased Jehovah to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see `his' seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of Jehovah shall prosper in his hand. 11 He shall see of the travail of his soul, `and' shall be satisfied: by the knowledge of himself shall my righteous servant justify many; and he shall bear their iniquities. 12 Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he poured out his soul unto death, and was numbered with the transgressors: yet he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors. .

  • How is Christ pictured?
  • What did He endure on your behalf?

From Drawing Near by John MacArthur Copyright © 1993. Used by permission of Crossway Books, a division of Good News Publishers, Wheaton, IL 60187, www.crossway.com.

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Morning Devotional by C.H. Spurgeon for August 24th

Published by C.H. Spurgeon for reading on August 24th.

Micah 2:13 13 The breaker is gone up before them: they have broken forth and passed on to the gate, and are gone out thereat; and their king is passed on before them, and Jehovah at the head of them.

INASMUCH as Jesus has gone before us, things remain not as they would have been had He never passed that way. He has conquered every foe that obstructed the way. Cheer up now thou faint-hearted warrior. Not only has Christ travelled the road, but He has slain thine enemies. Dost thou dread sin? He has nailed it to His cross. Dost thou fear death? He has been the death of Death. Art thou afraid of hell? He has barred it against the advent of any of His children; they shall never see the gulf of perdition. Whatever foes may be before the Christian, they are all overcome. There are lions, but their teeth are broken; there are serpents, but their fangs are extracted; there are rivers, but they are bridged or fordable; there are flames, but we wear that matchless garment which renders us invulnerable to fire. The sword that has been forged against us is already blunted; the instruments of war which the enemy is preparing have already lost their point. God has taken away in the person of Christ all the power that anything can have to hurt us. Well then, the army may safely march on, and you may go joyously along your journey, for all your enemies are conquered beforehand. What shall you do but march on to take the prey? They are beaten, they are vanquished; all you have to do is to divide the spoil. You shall, it is true, often engage in combat; but your fight shall be with a vanquished foe. His head is broken; he may attempt to injure you, but his strength shall not be sufficient for his malicious design. Your victory shall be easy, and your treasure shall be beyond all count.

"Proclaim aloud the Saviour's fame, Who bears the Breaker's wond'rous name; Sweet name; and it becomes him well, Who breaks down earth, sin, death, and hell."

Evening Devotional by C.H. Spurgeon for August 24th

Published by C.H. Spurgeon for reading on August 24th.

Exodus 22:6 6 If fire break out, and catch in thorns, so that the shocks of grain, or the standing grain, or the field are consumed; he that kindled the fire shall surely make restitution.

BUT what restitution can he make who casts abroad the fire-brands of error, or the coals of lasciviousness, and sets men's souls on a blaze with the fire of hell? The guilt is beyond estimate, and the result is irretrievable. If such an offender be forgiven, what grief it will cause him in the retrospect, since he cannot undo the mischief which he has done! An ill example may kindle a flame which years of amended character cannot quench. To burn the food of man is bad enough, but how much worse to destroy the soul! It may be useful to us to reflect how far we may have been guilty in the past, and to enquire whether, even in the present, there may not be evil in us which has a tendency to bring damage to the souls of our relatives, friends, or neighbours.

The fire of strife is a terrible evil when it breaks out in a Christian church. Where converts were multiplied, and God was glorified, jealousy and envy do the devil's work most effectually. Where the golden grain was being housed, to reward the toil of the great Boaz, the fire of enmity comes in and leaves little else but smoke and a heap of blackness. Woe unto those by whom offences come. May they never come through us, for although we cannot make restitution, we shall certainly be the chief sufferers if we are the chief offenders. Those who feed the fire deserve just censure, but he who first kindles it is most to blame. Discord usually takes first hold upon the thorns; it is nurtured among the hypocrites and base professors in the church, and away it goes among the righteous, blown by the winds of hell, and no one knows where it may end. O Thou Lord and giver of peace, make us peacemakers, and never let us aid and abet the men of strife, or even unintentionally cause the least division among Thy people.

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