July 4

2 Kings 23:31-25:30; Acts 22:17-23:10; Psalm 2:1-12; Proverbs 18:13

The City of Jerusalem and the Temple were built to honor God and His Name. When Israel and Judah continued in their persistent disobedience and rebellion against God, they were exiled into foreign lands. If that were not enough, the invading armies dismantled and destroyed all of the sacred objects and buildings. How would God allow all of His possessions and buildings be treated like that? 

Because those buildings were nothing more than symbols of something deeper: God’s relationship with His covenant people. Those buildings were only as good as the people who filled them! And when the hearts of the people turned away from God, those non-living structures had no meaning because the living witnesses had failed. Israel had been banished from before God’s presence because they rejected His way.

Each of us has to make a decision if we will accept or reject God’s way. If we accept it, we will spend our days and eternity in His presence. If we reject God, we will spend our everlasting days separated from Him. We do the choosing not God. Remember that God does not want the things we dedicate to Him more than He wants to be in real relationship with us!

Tomorrow’s Reading: 1 Chronicles 1:1-2:17; Acts 23:11-35; Psalm 3:1-8; Proverbs 18:14-15

July 3

2 Kings 22:3-23:30; Acts 21:37-22:16; Psalm 1:1-6; Proverbs 18:11-12

Have you ever done spring cleaning? You know, where you go top to bottom in your house and clean every room, closet, cabinet and even the garage? How about a spiritual house cleaning? This is a time when you look around at all the things you are engaged in and ask, “Are these things drawing me closer to God or drawing me away from God?”

King Josiah was the new king and he started doing temple cleaning and rebuilding. In the process he found a scroll of the Law. It painted a clear picture about what Israel had done which had caused their destruction. Josiah undertook a plan to clean out Judah from all the negative influences that pulled them away from God. His process was two-fold.

Josiah had to tear things down and destroy them. He also had to build things up in their place. What things in your life need to be torn down because they really are a distraction to your walk with God? What new things do you need to build up so that you can draw closer to God? What would happen if this exercise of spiritual house cleaning was done more frequently? It would yield the midcourse corrections that we need so that we can get to our place of purpose and destiny. Let’s do some spiritual house cleaning.

Tomorrow’s Reading: 2 Kings 23:31-25:30; Acts 22:17-23:10; Psalm 2:1-12; Proverbs 18:13

July 2

2 Kings 20:1-22:2; Acts 21:18-36; Psalm 150:1-6; Proverbs 18:9-10

Faithfulness has great value with God. People will often wonder what is the “currency” of the Kingdom of God. Unfortunately, some think it’s money or possessions, but it’s not. When God looks at us, He desires to see how faithful we have been with the opportunities He has given us.

Hezekiah was the King of Judah and had led faithfully. He was stricken with a fatal disease and Hezekiah received a word from the prophet that his life was about to end. In response to this message, Hezekiah prays to God. The King establishes his faithfulness and the fact that he did those things that pleased God.

Faithfulness will get you what money, positions, power and possessions can’t! Search your life today and ask yourself, “Am I being faithful and pleasing to God?” This should be the ongoing cry of your heart! God knows you can’t be perfect but you can be faithful! Start today because it will pay off for you.

Tomorrow’s Reading: 2 Kings 22:3-23:30; Acts 21:37-22:16; Psalm 1:1-6; Proverbs 18:11-12

July 1

2 Kings 18:13-19:37; Acts 21:1-17; Psalm 149:1-9; Proverbs 18:8

There are some questions that cut to core of our existence! King Sennacherib asked this question, “What are you trusting in that makes you so confident?” The King meant this as a way to intimidate Israel into surrendering. But, what the king didn’t understand was the God of Israel, is not a God to be mocked by anyone!

As long as King Sennacherib criticized Israel’s military ability he was on safe ground. But, when he spoke against God’s might and His ability to protect His children, the king crossed a serious line! Even though Israel was disobedient and had broken God’s commandments, they still were His people. He would not let anyone blaspheme Him!

Every threat that the king made, God said, “Not so!” Don’t ever underestimate God’s ability to fight for you even when you have not done everything right. Why? Because you are still His child! Keep putting your trust in God and you can be confident that no foe can confront you that God can’t defeat because if they come against you, they are really coming against Him and God never loses a battle.

Tomorrow’s Reading: 2 Kings 20:1-22:2; Acts 21:18-36; Psalm 150:1-6; Proverbs 18:9-10

June 30

2 Kings 17:1-18:12; Acts 20:1-38; Psalm 148:1-14; Proverbs 18:6-7

God really does not require that much from us. Think of it like a business arrangement (not that it is). God gives us life, health, strength, the ability to prosper, a purpose, destiny, and everything we could ever need. All He asks is that we worship him and obey him. To worship Him is to put Him first. To obey is to do what He says to do.

If you balance the scales, it appears that all God has given us far outweighs what He requires of us. When you look at what God did for Israel as a nation, His request seemed so insignificant. Put me first and do what I instructed you. At every turn, they did the exact opposite; with the end result being that the northern kingdom of Israel was taken into exile in Assyria. Because God is gracious, He gave Israel opportunity after opportunity to get things in order but they never did. I suspect that when the Assyrians came, the Israelites wondered, “Why is God doing this to us?” when in fact, God had been warning them.

You don’t have to miss what God has planned for your life. If you have been receiving warnings from God, please heed them. Don’t frustrate His grace. He loves you too much to just let you walk into trouble without a warning. Make whatever adjustments you need to. There is too much at stake.

Tomorrow’s Reading: 2 Kings 18:13-19:37; Acts 21:1-17; Psalm 149:1-9; Proverbs 18:8

June 29

2 Kings 15:1-16:20; Acts 19:13-41; Psalm 147:1-20; Proverbs 18:4-5

Life is choice driven. This is a fundamental truth that we must all understand. We will rise or fall based on the decisions we choose to make. We all get the same 24 hours each day. If we choose to do the wrong things with that time, it will derail our destiny.

As you look at the life span of all the kings of Judah and Israel, each had a choice to make. They would either use their reign to serve God or ignore His righteous commands. Each one paid the consequences for his actions. Their behavior either caused blessings on the people or brought destruction through invading armies.

What choices are you making with your life? You only get one life on this earth. How are you using it? Are the decisions you make about how you use your time ones that glorify God? If not, use today to make a change. One righteous decision can alter the course of your life. Let that day be today so that it will be written of you that you served God with all your heart in your generation.

Tomorrow’s Reading: 2 Kings 17:1-18:12; Acts 20:1-38; Psalm 148:1-14; Proverbs 18:6-7

June 28

2 Kings 13:1-14:29; Acts 18:23-19:12; Psalm 146:1-10; Proverbs 18:2-3

Are you willing to go all the way for God? Don’t give a hasty answer. In our heart, we say, “Yes” but our actions say, “Maybe”. No one ever starts out saying, “I will go most of the way” and then quits. We start out with the intention to finish and then something happens that causes us to lose our resolve to keep moving forward. When God gives you an open door, take it!

Elisha was nearing his last moments on earth and King Jehoash came to visit him. He wanted one last word from God that this great prophet would speak. He gives him a simple instruction: “Now pick up the other arrows and strike them against the ground.” (2 Kings 13:18) In a timid manner, Jehoash only strikes the ground 3 times thus limiting the victory he could have had against his enemies.

Jehoash didn’t know what was at stake. He didn’t know that God was giving him an open door to victory so he didn’t give it his all. In retrospect, I know he wished he struck the ground repeatedly until he had no more strength. When God gives you an opportunity put your whole heart into it. You don’t know what other doors it will open.

Tomorrow’s Reading: 2 Kings 15:1-16:20; Acts 19:13-41; Psalm 147:1-20; Proverbs 18:4-5

June 27

2 Kings 10:32-12:21; Acts 18:1-22; Psalm 145:1-21; Proverbs 18:1

The devil’s plan is simple: to kill, steal and destroy (John 10:10). He has not changed his game plan from the beginning. When he sees something that is moving in God’s direction and fulfilling its purpose, he will do whatever he can to stop it. He will use people to be a part of his assassination squad.

Athaliah tried to stop the rightful succession to the throne of Joash, the son of King Ahaziah. She was ready to destroy her own grandson so that she could stop what God had purposed. The good news is that as much as the devil is trying to “steal, kill and destroy”, God is protecting, providing and prospering those who will stand for Him.

What she tried to kill, she couldn’t. God will preserve and protect your life from premature death. At every point in human history, the devil has particularly targeted the children because he knows if he can kill the children he can destroy the next generation. Be a protector of children because you don’t know how God intends to use them in the future. One thing is for certain, God does plan on using them to do big things. You could be the one who helps preserve their lives so that they fulfill their purpose in life!

Tomorrow’s Reading: 2 Kings 13:1-14:29; Acts 18:23-19:12; Psalm 146:1-10; Proverbs 18:2-3

June 26

2 Kings 9:14-10:31; Acts 17:1-34; Psalm 144:1-15; Proverbs 17:27-28

God’s justice is not limited by our lifetimes. He will see that justice is done even after we have died. Naboth was viciously killed by Jezebel because Ahab wanted his vineyard. It was wrong and God judged it. At the time God said that Ahab, Jezebel and their entire family would be punished because of the injustice done to Naboth.

Like clock-work, God’s Word came to pass by the hand of King Jehu. You see, evil cannot win. In movies and TV shows, evil may win but not in a world where God lives. It may look like evil wins but when the dust settles evil loses every time. It may seem like it is taking some time but rest assured, God will not be mocked.

You may know of an injustice that happened to your family and there were some things unfairly taken. Don’t just let it go! You stand in faith that anything that was taken from your family line will be returned. Time does not matter to God. If it was taken unfairly from you or an ancestor, you believe God to get it back in your generation.

Tomorrow’s Reading: 2 Kings 10:32-12:21; Acts 18:1-22; Psalm 145:1-21; Proverbs 18:1

June 25

2 Kings 8:1-9:13; Acts 16:16-40; Psalm 143:1-12; Proverbs 17:26

You can never forget that God is a just God! He will never let your righteousness be taken advantage of. When you have lived your life for God, nothing is ever lost. God is a God of Recompense and you will always be repaid for anything that has been taken away.

The woman whose son had been brought back to life had left the area because of a famine. When she returned, her land was in someone else’s hands and they refused to give it back to her. She appealed to the king for her property. But something interesting was taking place when she entered the palace. Gehazi was telling the king about her and the miracle that Elisha performed.

Everything that she had lost was returned to her and even the profit from her crops was restored as well. Don’t ever accept that you have lost. God can and will turn it around in your favor. If you are willing to stand and believe God’s promises, He will even make the devil pay you interest. Purpose today that whatever was stolen from you will be recompensed 7 times. It must be so!

Tomorrow’s Reading: 2 Kings 9:14-10:31; Acts 17:1-34; Psalm 144:1-15; Proverbs 17:27-28