First Time Through!

Bible

When God laid it upon my heart to start this daily devotional blog in 2014, I started out with the New Testament. I wanted to go through each book, chapter by chapter, seeking what God has to say. As I was going through the New Testament, I encouraged everyone to read the entire chapter and book that I was in.

In each chapter I would look at it and seek what God would have me to say about a verse or two. Some chapters I would use several verses in more than one blog post. Other chapters, I only used a single verse, or none at all.

I went through the entire New Testament, and then went through it again. Once I had gone through it twice, I started on the Old Testament. It has taken over a year to complete through the Old Testament. With going through the New Testament and then the Old Testament, it has taken nearly four years, but it has been accomplished.

I trust that as you read these daily devotions each day, you had read the chapter the verses were in. God’s word is alive and sharper than a two-edged sword. It can and will change your life.

Hebrews 4_12

If all you have read of the Bible is what I posted on my blog, then you have missed the purpose of this blog and missed a lot of what God has for you. This blog is just to help guide you and help you focus on God’s word. It helps you to look at the verses and ask some questions about them and how they can apply to your life today.

Many people struggle with reading many parts of the Old Testament, but if you have read my posts, you can see that no matter where it was, there was something for a believer. All of God’s word points to God and to Jesus. God has given His word so that you may know Him and have a relationship with Him.

Psalm 119_105

I am looking forward to the days to come as I start over with the New Testament. I know that God will open up some new verses to be talked about. He has new things to show you and me to help us be more like Jesus and have a better relationship with Him.

Thank you for following or stopping by to read my daily devotionals God has laid upon my heart to write. I trust that you will open the Bible today and everyday and read what God has for you. Don’t just take my word for it, but see if what I say is really in the Bible. God can and will show you more than just what I write about, if you are willing to read His word.

May you grow closer and more like Jesus everyday. May you know and understand God and His word more each day. And may you grow to hunger for more of God and His word every day.

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Psalm 128:1 Blessed In Fear And Obedience

Blessed are all who fear the LORD, who walk in obedience to him. Psalm 128:1

Fear and obedience are two things that many people do not see associated with blessings. Yet the psalmist says that the one who fears and the one who is obedient is blessed.

Fear is often associated with being scared, not respect. There are many people in the world who fear God, because they fear that He will not accept them because of their past sins. Christians often fall into this same type of fear of God. They fear God no longer loves them because they fell back into some sin again. The weight of judgement against them weighs heavily on their minds.

This is not the fear the psalmist was talking about. Fear, here, is the respect and reverence for God. It is allowing God to be God and absolutely ruler over one’s life.

Obedience is seen as something that one must do, not a privilege to do. Throughout the world, many people obey the laws, only because they have to. The rules are obeyed only out of fear of getting caught. This also is often seen in the church. The heart is not in the obedience.

When a believer realizes what Jesus has done for him and how much God loves him, he will want to obey God. It will be a choice, not a requirement.

When you obey God out of fear, you are constantly on the outlook for when God is going to strike you. In that way, there is no real peace or loving relationship with God.

The blessings in fearing and obeying God is found in the relationship that is built up through the obedience. The level of trust in God is built up as you fear and obey Him. Knowing that there is peace between you and God rises when you know you are living for God with the right mindset.

Having that right relationship with God removes fear of judgement or reprimand. You will know the grace and mercy God has for you. In the midst of trouble in this life, you will still have God’s peace and love in your life. What better blessing can there be than that?

I pray today that you will know God’s love for you; that you will know God’s mercy for you; that you will have the proper fear and respect for God; that God will strengthen you in your obedience to Him; and that you will know all the blessings God has for you.

Ezra 3:6 First Priority

On the first day of the seventh month they began to offer burnt offerings to the LORD, though the foundation of the LORD’s temple had not yet been laid. Ezra 3:6

Cyrus, king of Persia, allowed the captive Israelites to return to Judah in order to rebuild the temple for God. He gave the people everything that they needed to survive and build the temple, and he allowed anyone who wanted to help in building it to go. Before they laid the foundation of the temple, they had built the altar and began to offer sacrifices on it.

When a person builds a house or some other building, the first thing that most will do is build the foundation. For a physical building, the foundation is the first most important part to build. It has to be laid on firm ground and be solid enough to hold the rest of the building.

As the Israelites began to rebuild the temple, their first priority was not the physical foundation of the building, but the foundation of their spirits. They had to get back to offering the required sacrifices to God first. They wanted to have their relationship with God restored first, before building anything else. A nice, new temple is meaningless if there is no relationship with God.

The foundation for every believer is Jesus Christ. As a believer, He is your foundation that has already been laid down. God, Himself, had laid that foundation for you. Now, as a believer, you must build your altar to God.

What you build first in your life, shows what your first priority is. Is your priority building a nice great looking building?

Or is your first priority to be right with God?

You must be willing to sacrifice your own will, desires, sins, and life on the altar for God. You are to be a living sacrifice for God.

Work at building your altar to God. On this altar you can lay down your life for God, so that He can fill you with His life. It is a place where you can worship God with your life and to allow Him to remove all sin in your life.

I pray today that you will have an altar in your heart to God; that you will give your life to God; that you will die to the things and ways of this world; and that your relationship with God will be your first priority in your life.