Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Strengthened by Grace Devotional: 1/21/20

Prayer for Tuesday: Lord, we have heard of all that you have done in and through the lives of your people – down the centuries and across the world. You have touched and changed people’s whole way of living; you have made people new. You make all things new! How glorious you are in the nature of your world, O Lord. Each day, your creatures awaken to new life and joyfully sing your praises with a thousand tongues. You are the source of life, the destroyer of death. By the light of the moon, the night birds sing, and the valleys and hills lie like wedding garments, white as snow. Let us want to dance before you like King David once did. Let us know joy because we know You! All the earth is your promised bride awaiting her spotless husband. If the grass of the field is like this, how gloriously shall we be transfigured in the coming of your kingdom! How splendid our bodies, how spotless our souls! All praise to you for your power and mercy, now and forever, in Christ's name, Amen.

Scripture Reading for Tuesday: Exodus 9-11

Scripture Reflection for Tuesday: Today's journey "Through the Bible" visits Exodus 9-11.

In Exodus 9, we see that Pharaoh’s hardening reminds us that the Lord is free to save or to harden sinners as He wills, for He made us all and has the right to glorify Himself by wrath or mercy (Rom. 9:16–23). Therefore, let us fear the Lord and not tremble before the wicked, no matter how stubborn and arrogant they are. God will get glory through them one way or the other.

In Exodus 10, we see that the Bible reveals both God’s total sovereignty over all things and man’s real responsibility for his willful choices. If we accept sovereignty but deny responsibility, we fall into fatalism, mysticism, and sin. If we accept responsibility but deny sovereignty, we fall into legalism, self-reliance, and pride. Even if we do not understand how these fit together, we must believe them both. How do both glorify God?

In Exodus 11, we see that the word of the Lord proves true. God told Moses what would happen beforehand (3:19–22; 4:21–23; 11:1)—and it did. God’s great message to us in the plagues and Pharaoh’s responses is, “I am the LORD.” Therefore, let every knee bow and every tongue confess that He is Lord. One word from God outweighs all the wisdom of mankind.

Daily Teaching (Catechism) for Tuesday:

By his obedience and death, Christ fully paid the debt of all those who are justified. He endured in their place the penalty they deserved. By this sacrifice of himself in his bloodshed on the cross, he legitimately, really, and fully satisfied God’s justice on their behalf. Yet their justification is based entirely on free grace, because he was given by the Father for them, and his obedience and satisfaction were accepted in their place. These things were done freely, not because of anything in them, so that both the exact justice and the rich grace of God would be glorified in the justification of sinners (Hebrews 10:14; 1 Peter 1:18, 19; Isaiah 53:5, 6; Romans 8:32; 2 Corinthians 5:21; Romans 3:26; Ephesians 1:6,7; 2:7).

May God help you to grow in Christ today,