Monday, December 30, 2019

Strengthened by Grace Devotional: 12/30/19

Prayer for Monday: Creator God, who eternally presides over the lands and waters of the earth, investing them with forms and colors which no human skill can copy, give me today, I ask You, the mind and heart to rejoice in Your creation. Forbid that I should walk through Your beautiful world with unseeing eyes. Forbid that the lure of the market-place should ever entirely steal my heart away from the love of the open acres and the green trees. Forbid that under the low roof of workshop or office or study I should ever forget Your great overarching sky. You whose divine tenderness always soars over the narrow loves and charities of earth, grant me today a kind and gentle heart towards all things that live. Let me take thought for the welfare of little children, and of those who are sick, and of the poor; remembering that what I do unto the least of these I do unto Jesus Christ my Lord. Amen.

Scripture Reading for Monday: Revelation 16-18

Scripture Reflection for Monday: Today's journey in God's word visits Revelation 16-18.

In Revelation 16, we see that the church appears to be surrounded by a worldwide army of unbelievers and sin. How should the expectation of judgment shape a Christian’s view of the world? How can the truths of this chapter motivate a believer to be spiritually alert and not to give up?

In Revelation 17, we see that the way to overcome the enticements of the world is through God’s sovereign grace alone. Only those chosen by God, redeemed by the Lamb, and called by the Spirit will be faithful. Will-power cannot succeed. Human wisdom will fail. Rely upon Christ alone.

In Revelation 18, we see that hope in Christ’s return motivates separation. Separation from the world does not mean physical removal, for the world is within us in our evil desires and pride (1 John 2:16). We cannot hide in monasteries or Christian ghettos. However, separation demands that we refuse to participate in the world’s sins, idolatrous worship, and heart-corrupting influences. Are you separated from the world in this sense?

Daily Teaching (Catechism) for Monday:

(7.2) Since humanity brought itself under the curse of the law by its fall, it pleased the Lord to make a covenant of grace. In this covenant, He freely offers to sinners life and salvation through Jesus Christ. On their part he requires faith in him, that they may be saved, and promises to give his Holy Spirit to all who are ordained to eternal life, to make them willing and able to believe (Genesis 2:17; Galatians 3:10; Romans 3:20, 21; Romans 8:3; Mark 16:15, 16; John 3:16; Ezekiel 36:26, 27; John 6:44, 45; Psalms 110:3).

May God help you to grow in Christ today,