VIDEO On Schedule – Learning to Tell Time

But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law. Galatians 4:4

Bill Watterson of the Calvin and Hobbes fame wrote: “Reality continues to ruin my life.” While that makes for a humorous quote, it is not a recipe for successful living.

Nonetheless, many people have chosen to deny the reality of the prophetic chronology of Daniel’s Seventy Weeks (Daniel 9:24-27)—especially as it pertains to the identity of the Jewish Messiah, Jesus Christ (verse 26).

Daniel prophesied that there would be 483 years (69 weeks of seven years each) between the Persian king’s permission to rebuild Jerusalem and the appearance of the Anointed One, the Messiah. Many biblical scholars have worked out the details of this chronology and found it to be accurate. That means that the appearance of Christ came in “the fullness of the time” (Galatians 4:4). Jesus Himself said at the beginning of His ministry, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand” (Mark 1:15). Christ’s birth, ministry, death, and resurrection were based on God’s prophetic calendar.

Never doubt God’s timing for events in your life. Your days have been ordered by Him (Psalm 139:16).

God’s plan will continue on God’s schedule. A. W. Tozer


Learning to Tell Time – Galatians 4:3-5; Genesis 49 – Skip Heitzig

 

Seeking God

Today's Devotional

You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek you.  Psalm 63:1

It’s inspiring to watch people’s passion and dedication in pursuing their dreams. A young woman I know recently graduated from college in just three years—a task that took total commitment. A friend wanted a particular car, so he worked diligently baking and selling cakes until he reached his goal. Another person who’s in sales seeks to meet one hundred new people every week.

While it can be good to earnestly seek something of earthly value, there’s a more important kind of seeking that we must consider.

In desperation, struggling in a desert, King David wrote, “You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek you” (Psalm 63:1). As David cried out to Him, God drew close to the weary king. David’s deep spiritual thirst for God could only be satisfied in His presence.

The king remembered meeting with God in His “sanctuary” (v. 2), experiencing His all-conquering love (v. 3), and praising Him day after day—finding true satisfaction in Him that’s not unlike enjoying a full and satisfying meal (vv. 4–5). Even during the night he contemplated God’s greatness, recognizing His help and protection (vv. 6–7).

Today the Holy Spirit convicts us to earnestly seek after God. As we cling to Him, in power and love God holds us up with His strong right hand. By the leading of the Spirit, may we draw close to the Maker of all good things.

By:  Dave Branon

Reflect & Pray

How has the Holy Spirit been prompting you to seek God? What are some things you can do this week to grow closer to Him?

Thank You, God, for drawing me to seek after You. To know You better. To love You more. To recognize Your greatness. I’m so grateful for Your presence in my life.

Snared by the Schemer

2 Corinthians 2:1-11

Satan’s primary goal is to alienate you from the love of God. If our enemy can manipulate you into focusing on your own desires, you will no longer see the Lord’s perspective.

We have seen this happen to people throughout the Bible. In Genesis, Eve wasn’t able to see all that God gave her, because she focused on one fruit (Gen. 3:1-6). In the book of Joshua, Achan was trapped by his desire for wealth, and he sinned against God (Josh. 7:20-25).

Even a man abundantly blessed by the Lord can lose sight of what’s important. King David went up to the palace roof, and he spotted a beautiful woman bathing (2 Samuel 11:2). This single action led to several tragic events in his life. By taking his eyes off God and all that He had provided, David ended up experiencing great heartache.

The same can happen to us, but there is good news: If you’ve committed yourself to the Lord, then you have died and been raised with Christ. He is now your life (Col. 3:1-4). When facing temptation, ask yourself, How will Christ regard the choice I make, and Will my decision have unwanted repercussions? Listen for the Holy Spirit, and He will send you in the right direction.

All or Nothing?

Abandoned Gas Station
When Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he put on his outer garment…and plunged into the sea. —John 21:7

Have you ever had a crisis in your life in which you deliberately, earnestly, and recklessly abandoned everything? It is a crisis of the will. You may come to that point many times externally, but it will amount to nothing. The true deep crisis of abandonment, or total surrender, is reached internally, not externally. The giving up of only external things may actually be an indication of your being in total bondage.

Have you deliberately committed your will to Jesus Christ? It is a transaction of the will, not of emotion; any positive emotion that results is simply a superficial blessing arising out of the transaction. If you focus your attention on the emotion, you will never make the transaction. Do not ask God what the transaction is to be, but make the determination to surrender your will regarding whatever you see, whether it is in the shallow or the deep, profound places internally.

If you have heard Jesus Christ’s voice on the waves of the sea, you can let your convictions and your consistency take care of themselves by concentrating on maintaining your intimate relationship to Him.

by Oswald Chambers

Take Time to Really Listen

The entrance of thy words giveth light; it giveth understanding unto the simple. I opened my mouth and panted: for I longed for thy commandments.

—Psalm 119:130-131

 

The Quakers had many fine ideas about life, and there is a story from them that illustrates the point I am trying to make. It concerns a conversation between Samuel Taylor Coleridge and a Quaker woman he had met. Maybe Coleridge was boasting a bit, but he told the woman how he had arranged the use of time so he would have no wasted hours. He said he memorized Greek while dressing and during breakfast. He went on with his list of other mental activities—making notes, reading, writing, formulating thoughts and ideas—until bedtime.

The Quaker listened unimpressed. When Coleridge was finished with his explanation, she asked him a simple, searching question: “My friend, when dost thee think?”

God is having a difficult time getting through to us because we are a fast-paced generation. We seem to have no time for contemplation. We have no time to answer God when He calls.   JAF046

Lord, in this increasingly fast-paced, success-oriented life, slow us down and teach us the value of having time to think. Amen.

 

Am I Really Converted?

As the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.

—James 2:26

 

I believe in the deeper Christian life and experience—oh yes! But I believe we are mistaken when we try to add the deeper life to an imperfect salvation, obtained imperfectly by an imperfect concept of the whole thing.

Under the working of the Spirit of God through such men as Finney and Wesley, no one would ever dare to rise in a meeting and say, “I am a Christian” if he had not surrendered his whole being to God and had taken Jesus Christ as his Lord….

Today, we let them say they are saved no matter how imperfect and incomplete the transaction, with the proviso that the deeper Christian life can be tacked on at some time in the future.

Can it be that we really think that we do not owe Jesus Christ our obedience?

We have owed Him obedience ever since the second we cried out to Him for salvation, and if we do not give Him…obedience, I have reason to wonder if we are really converted! ICH013

I am satisfied that when a man believes on Jesus Christ he must believe on the whole Lord Jesus Christnot making any reservation! ICH007

 

Supper in Emmaus

Luke 24:32

George Eliot called it “the loveliest story in the world.” But what is it that makes the Emmaus story so beautiful?

First, you have a country road and a country village. You have two ordinary people—not members of the Eleven. Only one of them, Cleopas, is named. You have an earnest invitation to share in a very frugal meal. And that is all. Yet out of these commonplace threads is woven a story that has thrilled people for 2,000 years.

Walking down that Emmaus Road were two dispirited travelers. For them the thoroughfare could not be measured in miles; it stretched from bewilderment to heartbreak, from bitter disappointment to disillusionment.

As Cleopas and his companion trudged homeward, the death of Jesus, which was certain, and His possible resurrection, which was manifestly uncertain, were the only subjects of discussion. And while they reasoned on them, “Jesus Himself came up and walked along with them” (Luke 24:15)

The first thing He does for these two who thought their precious dream had faded, that death had taken charge, was to open to them the Scriptures. During the walk, not only the Scriptures, but hearts, were opened. “Were not our hearts burning within us while He talked with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?” (Luke 24:32).

It was an experience that His listeners did not want to end. The day was melting into evening and they begged Him to stay. In these twilight moments, while the three supped together, the room was suffused with burning glory. Suddenly the two villagers were dazzled by the awareness that the stranger to whom they had offered hospitality was none other than the risen Lord! Truly alive! As quickly as they recognized their royal guest, so quickly did He vanish from their sight. Pieces of the broken bread were still there on the table. And while the two sat in stunned silence, the room still echoed the sound of His blessing.

The appearance of the resurrected Jesus had to be reported at once to the Eleven in Jerusalem. While only hours earlier their footsteps had dragged along a weary road, now their feet fairly flew. They were bearers of the best news of all: “He is risen!”

The most commonplace walk, the dustiest road, the lowliest home and the most ordinary people can be filled with radiant glory, if the living Lord draws near and takes preeminence. The burning heart, surely, is a supreme need of every individual who names the name of Christ.

Arnold Brown, With Christ at the Table