April 8

Deuteronomy 32:28-52; Luke 12:35-59; Psalm 78:56-64; Proverbs 12:24

Moses reaches the end of His life with a major disappointment. After winning the Israelites release from Egypt and leading the children of Israel through the wilderness, he gets to the edge of the Promised Land but cannot enter it. One rash decision caused both he and Aaron to forfeit their ability to go to Canaan. The only thing that Moses could do was look at it but never enter it.

What was it that disqualified Moses? God said Moses failed to “demonstrate His holiness.” What does that mean? The people had complained once again about not having water. So, God told Moses to speak to the Rock so that He could perform a miracle and provide water. Moses was frustrated because of the constant complaining and took the staff and struck the rock. Water came out but it looked like Moses had provided the water instead of God.

God’s holiness is tied to the demonstration of His power because His promise was on the line. He promised Israel that He would care for them. God did not need any help- even from Moses.  God had shown His ability to care for His people in a supernatural way throughout the wilderness. You are His child and He knows how to take care of you and provide for all your needs. Like Moses, oft times we step into the way and add our effort to God’s. God really does not need our help. When God does something it always turns out right!

Let’s not commit Moses’ sin which was really a lack of faith! Let’s commit to get out of God’s way so He can show His glory through our lives. Since God desires the glory, let Him do all the work! The results will amaze you!

Tomorrow’s Reading: Deuteronomy 33:1-29; Luke 13:1-21; Psalm 78:65-72; Proverbs 12:25

April 7

Deuteronomy 31:1-32:27; Luke 12:8-34; Psalm 78:32-55; Proverbs 12:21-23

Have you ever given much thought to what will happen after you are gone? I know it’s not a happy thought but it is a necessary question. Most of us spend our lives looking in the rearview mirror. Through that mirror you see everything clearly. You can see turns you shouldn’t have taken. You will see choices that you wish you could do over.

Moses understood that his time was drawing near and it was time to pass the baton to the next generation. Moses put things in place to prepare for the time when he was not going to be present. When it was nearing Moses time, God spoke to him and told him that he was about to die. He gave Moses specific instructions so that Israel would have consistent leadership that would build on the model that Moses left.

Moses documented everything for others to follow. What must it be like to live your life so full of passion and purpose that when it’s time to die, you know that you completed everything that God told you to do.

Today, use the rearview mirror from eternity and see what the status of your legacy is. If you see things that need to be corrected, start now. Give God your best each day and when it is that time to salute your service, you will hear Almighty Good say, “Well Done.”

Tomorrow’s Reading: Deuteronomy 32:28-52; Luke 12:35-59; Psalm 78:56-64; Proverbs 12:24

April 6

Deuteronomy 29:1-30:20; Luke 11:37-12:7; Psalm 78:1-31; Proverbs 12:19-20

God created us with freewill and He will never violate our will! Therefore, our entire life is about the choices that we make (or refuse to make as the case may be). We are where we are because we made a conscious decision to do certain things.

I marvel at the Bible’s clarity. Moses has presented so much information to Israel about God’s plans and His law. He reminds them that if they break the covenant that God will punish them but, once they repent, God will bring them back and bless them again.

Then Moses simplifies the message so that no one could say they did not understand. He basically says that in all of our choosing, we really are making a choice between life and death! This really lets us know what is at stake. The littlest, insignificant decision could lead to death. Or, the biggest decision we could ever make would lead us to life– everlasting life. When you speak in terms of these extremes, it does give us a clear picture of the repercussions of our decisions.

Are you making decisions that lead to life or death? God cannot choose for us (though we know what He would want us to choose.) Check the decisions you make every day. Make certain they are life-giving decisions and not those that detract from your purpose. Life is choice driven. Let’s make the right choices.

Tomorrow’s Reading: Deuteronomy 31:1-32:27; Luke 12:8-34; Psalm 78:32-55; Proverbs 12:21-23

April 5

Deuteronomy 28:1-68; Luke 11:14-36; Psalm 77:1-20; Proverbs 12:18

Deuteronomy 28 is a powerful chapter of the Bible. It illustrates how important obedience is. In fact, you will see that obedience is a theme that runs throughout the whole Bible. We know we want The Blessing of God on our lives. In the Old Testament, the people had to earn it by strict obedience to all the commandments. In the New Testament, we still have to be obedient but it is not to earn anything from God.

You see, in Christ, you are already blessed. You obey God because you are blessed and want those blessings to keep on flowing. You can’t earn The Blessing. Jesus earned the blessing for you. Don’t read this chapter and think that you are disqualified. Jesus made you qualified. Your obedience is nothing more than the way to express your thanksgiving for being blessed.

As you read Deuteronomy 28, the list of curses outweighs the blessings. These curses are all an Old Testament reality. As a child of God, you cannot be cursed. How can a blood-bought, child of God be cursed? Jesus died to destroy the curse. So, the next time you are tempted to disobey, know that your continued enjoyment of God’s blessings is on the line. If you feel your life is cursed, it’s not. You have let the enemy of your soul trick you into accepting less than what Jesus died for. Resolve today that you will no longer take any of the curse because the Blood of Jesus broke the curse.

Live a life obeying God as a way to please Him not earn anything from Him.

Tomorrow’s Reading: Deuteronomy 29:1-30:20; Luke 11:37-12:7; Psalm 78:1-31; Proverbs 12:19-20

April 4

Deuteronomy 26:1-27:26; Luke 10:38-11:13; Psalm 76:1-12; Proverbs 12:15-17

Do you have a personal altar where you meet God? At key points in Scripture we see an altar being built as a meeting place with God. Moses told the people to erect two structures: one was a place to inscribe the commands of God and one as a place of Worship.

God established for Israel a way for them to constantly stay in line with His purpose and live a meaningful life. They needed the Word of God (the commands of God) and an altar (a place to worship). Moses instructed that the law be written and that offerings were to be brought to the altar.

This is the model for our lives. If you will keep the Word of God as the center of your life and live a life of worship (which includes prayer) you will always be on target to fulfill your purpose.

When Jesus was at Mary and Martha’s house, Martha criticized Mary because she spent her time at Jesus’ feet. Martha was content with serving to ensure that everyone’s needs were met. But Mary would not leave Jesus’ presence. Some people will make a choice to do one or the other. But, God requires both. God gets our worship and people get our service. Start your day with God’s Word and worship, then spend the rest of your day in service to others. That’s God’s way and it works!

Tomorrow’s Reading: Deuteronomy 28:1-68; Luke 11:14-36; Psalm 77:1-20; Proverbs 12:18

April 3

Deuteronomy 23:1-25:19; Luke 10:13-37; Psalm 75:1-10; Proverbs 12:12-14

How we treat people is a reflection of what we think of God and a response to our own past. As Moses continues to give the law, he gives clear instructions how the weak and vulnerable are to be treated. He called on Israel to remember, “that they were slaves in Israel.”

There is a sensitivity that comes from remembering where we came from. Developing amnesia is a bad habit many of us have. However, if we could remind ourselves of the times that we needed help, the times that we had more month than money or the times that we prayed diligently for someone to help us then we would be more sensitive to those around us.

In the Law, it was legislated that the poor, widows and orphans be cared for. If you had a field, you were instructed to leave food for the poor so that they could glean it. As you harvested crops, you were instructed to leave some for the poor who would come behind you.

Humble remembrance of our past serves as the motivation to be kind and generous. Take some time today and remember where you came from and where God has brought you (even though you may not be where you want to be yet). Let this memory soften your heart to show kindness to someone else today. Not because you have to, but because you are thankful.

Tomorrow’s Reading: Deuteronomy 26:1-27:26; Luke 10:38-11:13; Psalm 76:1-12; Proverbs 12:15-17

April 2

Deuteronomy 21:1-22:30; Luke 9:51-10:12; Psalm 74:1-23; Proverbs 12:11

How do you handle the tough challenges of life? As believers, we are not exempt from distasteful things. “The righteous person faces many troubles, but the Lord comes to the rescue each time.” (Psalm 34:17)

The Bible is clear that Jesus came to give His life on the cross for us. But that was not his ultimate goal! The moment that he was conceived in Mary’s womb began a journey for Him to get back to His Father’s presence. So, even though as an all-knowing God, he understood all the twists, turns and torture that Jesus would endure, He never took His eyes off of the larger goal.

This is how you and I should face the difficulties of life. Far too often we focus on the challenge itself without realizing that there will be joy on the other side. What was Jesus’ joy? “As the time drew near for him to ascend to heaven, Jesus resolutely set out for Jerusalem” (Luke 9:51). Notice He set out for Jerusalem because it was a way-station on the path back home! He knew what needed to happen at Calvary, but Jesus’ heart was set on what happened afterwards. The cross was bearable because Jesus knew on the other side was resurrection from the dead, returning to Heaven and reconnecting all of us to the Father.

Don’t be intimidated when bad situations arise. Focus on the other side when you know you stand in victory and stand as a stronger person. This is what Jesus did and we should too.

Tomorrow’s Reading: Deuteronomy 23:1-25:19; Luke 10:13-37; Psalm 75:1-10; Proverbs 12:12-14

April 1

Deuteronomy 18:1-20:20; Luke 9:28-50; Psalm 73:1-28; Proverbs 12:10

A question commonly asked, is “Why do the wicked prosper?” As you read through the psalms, this is a recurring question that is asked. The challenge with this type of question is that it focuses on the wrong thing. When we take the time to assess other people’s possessions, achievements, or prosperity, it leads us down the wrong road.

The psalm we read today said that he almost lost his footing because he started looking at what others had. Why did he lose his footing? Because when he looked at others, he allowed envy to enter into his life. Once envy entered, then he began to look at every aspect of their lives and compare it to his own. The writer of the psalm also began to question if living for God was the best way to go. Was living a righteous life all for naught? Of course not!

God’s way is never to compare ourselves to others. The psalmist starts off with the words, “Truly God is good to Israel, to those whose hearts are pure.”

When we look at what others have, we lose sight of what is most important: the goodness of God that He has shown to us. You may not have all that you want but you have experienced the goodness of God. There may still be unanswered prayers but God has still been good to you. Put the focus back on God and not on others. Let this be your prayer: “But as for me, how good it is to be near God! I have made the Sovereign Lord my shelter, and I will tell everyone about the wonderful things you do.” (Psalm 73:28)

Tomorrow’s Reading: Deuteronomy 21:1-22:30; Luke 9:51-10:12; Psalm 74:1-23; Proverbs 12:11

March 31

Deuteronomy 16:1-17:20; Luke 9:7-27; Psalm 72:1-20; Proverbs 12:8-9

God’s Word is so important to our lives that we cannot take it lightly. When Israel was instructed about the rules for a King, God says that the King should write the entire Law, which God had given Moses, by hand in front of the priests.

This seems like a strange request. However, God was laying out a strategy for how we can become saturated with His Word so that we do not stray from it. In addition to handwriting the entire scroll, the King was to always keep a copy of the scroll with him and read from it daily. As the King persists in reading the Word of God, he became saturated with its truths so that he would not become boastful and act like he was above others.

The advice God gave for the King applies to us. As we stay connected to the Word of God, it will keep our flesh in tact so that we can remain humble and not act as if we are better than others. You see, the King had an office of responsibility but it did not make him better than the people he ruled. As you remain connected to God’s Word, you will drive out all obstacles in your life and remain in alignment with God’s Word. The closer you stay to God’s Word, the more you will see the hand of God work in your life. Treasure God’s Word! It is your foundation for living.

Tomorrow’s Reading: Deuteronomy 18:1-20:20; Luke 9:28-50; Psalm 73:1-28; Proverbs 12:10

March 30

Deuteronomy 13:1-15:23; Luke 8:40-9:6; Psalm 71:1-24; Proverbs 12:5-7

As good as some people may seem, we must be careful that they do not draw us away from God! Moses cautions the Israelites about prophets who come in God’s name and do miraculous signs and speak accurate prophetic words. Then, they somehow suggest that you should turn aside to follow foreign (or strange) gods. Even though they did spectacular things, their testimony is not to be believed because they are not remaining true to God.

Those who lead people astray, away from God, were to be put to death. This seems like a big deal for God to demand the ultimate penalty for them. Well, it is a big deal! If someone is drawing you away from Him, that person cannot be trusted– even if they do spectacular spiritual things. This is the caution that all of us have to heed.

No one should be allowed to weaken our relationship with God or the church in which God has set us because if we lose those two anchors in our lives, we will drift aimlessly on the sea of life. If you have let someone do this, there is no better time than today to get back in place. Repent to God for allowing this to happen and then get back in place. Your joy and peace are tied to being in the right place! When you are in the right place, you can say like our psalm reading, “I will shout for joy and sing your praises, for you have ransomed me. I will tell about your righteous deeds all day long, for everyone who tried to hurt me has been shamed and humiliated.”

Tomorrow’s Reading: Deuteronomy 16:1-17:20; Luke 9:7-27; Psalm 72:1-20; Proverbs 12:8-9