Daniel 5:1-31; 2 Peter 2:1-22; Psalm 119:113-128; Proverbs 28:19-20
Each of our lives has to count for something. If we can look at the sum total of all our actions and words, what eternal value would our lives have? If how we used our time, talent and treasure was the real significance of our lives, how much would it all be worth?
King Belshazzar had seen what had happened to his predecessor. He saw what happened when a person allowed pride to cloud his judgment. Even though King Nebuchadnezzar learned his lesson as he grazed like a cow, he was a living example of how to surrender to God and let one’s life have meaning. King Belshazzar’s life was weighed and found lacking.
We have many examples before us of how humility and servanthood are rewarded by God. We have a path laid out to follow. If we use our lives to honor God and bless others, our lives will never be found lacking real value.
Tomorrow’s Reading: Daniel 6:1-28;2 Peter 3:1-18;Psalm 119:129-152;Proverbs 28:21-22
Daniel 4:1-37; 2 Peter 1:1-21; Psalm 119:97-112; Proverbs 28:17-18
God is always revealing Himself to us. He desires that we make every effort to know Him. What happens when we ignore God and begin to see ourselves as a god? It never goes well!
King Nebuchadnezzar had seen the awesome power of God and He issued a decree that no one could defame the God of Israel. But, all Nebuchadnezzar did was respect a foreign God. God wanted to be Nebuchadnezzar’s God.
In his pride, King Nebuchadnezzar, saw his vast kingdom and all of his military might and placed himself as an equal to God. He lost his sanity, and kingdom for a period of time. It was only when King Nebuchadnezzar realized that “heaven rules” did his kingdom and sanity return.
What will it take for us to really be convinced that God rules and submit to His authority. He just wants an opportunity to show us how much He loves us! Let’s spread this message to all who will hear.
Tomorrow’s Reading: Daniel 5:1-31; 2 Peter 2:1-22; Psalm 119:113-128; Proverbs 28:19-20
Daniel 2:24-3:30; 1 Peter 4:7-5:14; Psalm 119:81-96; Proverbs 28:15-16
Are there non-negotiable parts of your life as it relates to your faith? Are there certain lines that you will not cross? There should be! Culture attempts to constantly erase the line and take more ground. If we give in once, we will be forced to give in again and again.
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego had been raised to believe that only one Being was worthy of worship and that was God. So, when the King decreed that everyone must bow and worship his statue, these 3 young men knew that they would not do it.
When they were dragged in front of the king to defend their actions, they let the king know that there was no circumstance under which they would ever bow down and worship a man. Under the threat of death, they remained true to their faith.
And, as a result, there was no punishment that could defeat them. Now this is real faith! They did not waver in their convictions or commitment to God and even though it should have cost their lives, God delivered them from the fiery furnace. Know for certain that God will do whatever is necessary to defend those who stand with Him! Trust this!
Tomorrow’s Reading: Daniel 4:1-37; 2 Peter 1:1-21; Psalm 119:97-112; Proverbs 28:17-18
Daniel 1:1-2:23; 1 Peter 3:8-4:6; Psalm 119:65-80; Proverbs 28:14
Serving God gives us advantages. Whenever God’s way is juxtaposed against the world’s way, God’s way wins. This is a little known truth. So many try to fit in and become like the world and when they do this, they miss seeing the real power of God.
Daniel and his three friends were in a foreign land but took the bold step to be different. The others ate the fine food from the King’s table. But, Daniel and his friends ate the way God had prescribed. It was a huge risk for them to chose God’s way but they had such a confidence that God’s way was best.
Are you convinced that God’s way, though different, is the best way? Would you be willing to take a bold stand and go against the grain to maintain your Biblical principles? Would you say “no” to the world in order to say “yes” to God? There is a supernatural advantage granted to those who will stick with God’s way.
Tomorrow’s Reading: Daniel 2:24-3:30; 1 Peter 4:7-5:14; Psalm 119:81-96; Proverbs 28:15-16
Ezekiel 47:1-48:35; 1 Peter 2:11-3:7; Psalm 119:49-64; Proverbs 28:12-13
We set the climate for our relationship with God. As much as God desires to be our Father and to walk with us in life, He cannot violate our will. So, as powerful as God is, He cannot enter our lives unless we invite Him.
So, how much of God do you desire? If you only want to know God on the surface, He will meet you there. If you want to know God more, He will give you as much as you want. If you want Him to overwhelm you with His love, He will do that too.
Have you placed limits on God? Remove them. There is so much more that God wants to reveal to you about Who He is. Ezekiel was in the water and the water kept rising until it was deep enough to swim in. Are you so passionate about knowing God that you keep going further and further until you are so immersed into God that you know its all Him and you? We can never know all there is to know about God but I don’t think it would hurt to try! Deep waters are calling for us. Let’s answer.
Tomorrow’s Reading: Daniel 1:1-2:23; 1 Peter 3:8-4:6; Psalm 119:65-80; Proverbs 28:14
Ezekiel 45:13-46:24; 1 Peter 1:13-2:10; Psalm 119:33-48; Proverbs 28:11
“Why does God want me to give?” This is a question often posed. Since God owns everything and needs nothing, why does He always prescribe giving as a standard for our lives? Simple: Giving is about us more than it is about God.
In the act of giving, we consciously recalibrate ourselves to God. We recall that everything we have (regardless of amount) comes from our generous God. Israel brought animals, grain flour and oil as offerings to God. They were showing their dependence on God each time they gathered. In fact, whenever they gathered, they brought offerings to God.
In our materialistic world with its never-ending desire for more, giving takes our mind off of “stuff” and puts it on God. It also makes us more like God because our God is a giver and He is generous. When we give to God, it enables His work to continue and expand to reach and help others. As Israel brought their gifts, they served a practical purpose to ensure that God’s House was taken care of.
Giving is always about our heart towards God. If God is first and best, then He should receive our first and best. Giving is easy when we have first given ourselves to God. Let’s start there!
Tomorrow’s Reading: Ezekiel 47:1-48:35; 1 Peter 2:11-3:7; Psalm 119:49-64; Proverbs 28:12-13
Ezekiel 44:1-45:12; 1 Peter 1:1-12; Psalm 119:17-32; Proverbs 28:8-10
We can never forget that having God in our lives is our most valuable asset. Those who serve God can always expect that He will make a way for them. Israel received the good news that they were coming back to their homeland. But, after all the time that they were away from Israel, all the property records were lost. People were returning home to nothing.
God made sure that those who had dedicated their lives to serving Him would have all their needs met. In fact, God said that He would be their portion. This means that having God is even better than the finest land and possessions. How quick we are to forget that God is our source and He sustains our lives. We can get comfortable and think that our education, career, or social networks are the most important things in our lives. They can’t be.
None of them stands the test of time! Only God can be our source and all those other things are resources. Picture God as a flowing river and your job as just a pitcher. The source (river) is unlimited and the resource (pitcher) is limited. God possesses all we could ever need. Look to God to supply for you and He will. If you need joy, peace, hope, love, strength, forgiveness, healing or a fresh start, look to God. If you need a job, a house, a car or any other help, look to God. He can and will take care of His own!
Tomorrow’s Reading: Ezekiel 45:13-46:24; 1 Peter 1:13-2:10; Psalm 119:33-48; Proverbs 28:11
Ezekiel 42:1-43:27; James 5:1-20; Psalm 119:1-16; Proverbs 28:6-7
God is Holy! It is as much a part of His nature as love. God cannot stop being Holy; if He did, He would stop being God. The same is true for God’s love. It is part of who He is. If you take love away He would no longer be God.
Because He is Holy (pure, without blemish, perfect), God can only have Holy things and Holy people in His presence. The way this was accomplished in the Old Testament was through cleansing rituals and sacrifices. Performing the ceremonies the way God instructed enabled one to enter God’s presence.
But, once Jesus came and died for our sins, we no longer need those rituals to make us worthy to be in God’s presence. Jesus’ blood does that. This is what is called Righteousness— being made right with God. God makes us righteous so we have nothing to do with it except believing. However, God still expects absolute holiness from us!
Are you really striving to give God the best in your actions and words? Is it your heart’s desire to please God in your behavior? If we give God our best efforts then when we miss the mark, His Blood cleanses us. Let us not live based on the low moral code of our culture. Since our God is holy, let’s be an example of right living which matches our right standing with God. In this way, God’s presence will remain with us all the time.
Tomorrow’s Reading: Ezekiel 44:1-45:12; 1 Peter 1:1-12; Psalm 119:17-32; Proverbs 28:8-10
Ezekiel 40:28-41:26; James 4:1-17; Psalm 118:19-29; Proverbs 28:3-5
Our Heavenly Father is a Master Architect. He can take anything and remake it into something beautiful. Regardless of the amount of work it will take, God will devise a plan to transform the most broken building or vessel.
As God spoke to Ezekiel about bringing Israel back home from exile, the centerpiece of their faith, The Temple, was destroyed. God takes the time to show Ezekiel, step-by-step and room-by-room, exactly how the Temple will be rebuilt. If God will do this for a building, imagine what He can do with our lives.
Your life might be lying in ruins with no hope of reconstruction. Those are the projects God specializes in rebuilding. As skilled as we are in messing up our lives, God is more skilled at putting them back together! Let the Master Builder show you the wonderful plan He has for your life! Then give Him permission to start the renovation process. You will be pleased with the outcome!
Tomorrow’s Reading: Ezekiel 42:1-43:27; James 5:1-20; Psalm 119:1-16; Proverbs 28:6-7
Ezekiel 39:1-40:27; James 2:18-3:18; Psalm 118:1-18; Proverbs 28:2
God is protective of His children. Even though we may not do the things we should and we suffer natural consequences for our misdeeds, God is still on our side. God’s love for us never fails and His commitment to us never wanes.
All God desires is for us to repent, which means to turn away from our sins, and return to Him. Israel’s enemies had become haughty because they felt that their victory over Israel was because of their military might. How wrong they were!
Israel’s enemies defeated them because Israel had walked away from their Protector, The Lord of Heaven’s Armies! Israel’s exile to a foreign country was punishment for leaving God. Yet, the foreign nations rejoiced that Israel was destroyed. They did not realize that God still protects His own— even when they are being punished.
God demonstrated to all of Israel’s enemies that He is still Sovereign— which means He Reigns! As you live for God, you should know that God is on your side and He will always cause you to win if you stay close to Him. He will protect, guard and defend you.
Tomorrow’s Reading: Ezekiel 40:28-41:26; James 4:1-17; Psalm 118:19-29; Proverbs 28:3-5