Devotionals

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Loving God

Today's Message

{ Day 177 }

But they will have to give account to him who is ready to judge the living and the dead. For this is the reason the gospel was preached even to those who are now dead, so that they might be judged according to men in regard to the body, but live according to God in regard to the spirit. —1 Peter 4:5-6

Three faces of Jesus Christ—Bridegroom, King, and Judge—will be revealed and emphasized in the unprecedented end-time activities of the Holy Spirit. The revelation of the Bridegroom is what God will use to restore the first commandment to first place. Seeing the passionate Lover will make us passionate lovers of God. The revelation of the King will cause us to operate in the power of God as we go out to meet the great harvest. The revelation of the Judge will cause us to participate with Him in loosing His judgments. As you reach your heart toward Him, be encouraged that a powerful new dimension of His presence is waiting to unfold; it is the mystery of eternal ages, the heavenly Bridegroom and you—His beloved. The explosive power of this revelation will change you and make you ready to meet the challenges of holiness, compassion, and beauty that await you in the glorious age in which you live.

{ PRAYER STARTER }

Jesus, You have awakened a passionate love for You within me. I pray that You will fill me with Your power to win the lost to You. I loose Your judgment in this world and pray that You enable me to bring a harvest of souls into Your kingdom.

Open up your heart to the passionate Lover who is
exhilarated and thrilled about you even while
you are maturing in Him.

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Daily Breakthroughs

Today's Message

Dig a Ditch

And he said, thus saith the Lord, Make this valley full of ditches. For thus saith the Lord, Ye shall not see wind, neither shall ye see rain; yet that valley shall be filled with water, that ye may drink, both ye, and your cattle, and your beasts. —2 Kings 3:16-17

The armies were dying of thirst when they received the prophet's words. God instructed them, through His prophet, to do something first in the natural: Dig a ditch! It's too late to dig a ditch after the rains come. Get prepared. Stay ready. Be armed. When God says to act, don't delay. Do exactly what He commands.

The man with the withered arm wasn't healed until he stretched forth his arm. Farmers don't expect a harvest until they sow seed. God will not send your increase until you have prepared to receive it. What will you do today to prepare to receive what God has for you?

God has something He wants to give you—so prepare for increase. If you want to make room for Him in your life, you have to dig a ditch.

Jesus, I want to receive all you have
for me. I am digging a ditch, preparing
a place for all You have for me. I am
ready, Lord. Send Your rain. Amen.

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By Love Transformed

Today's Message

True Perception

Righteous Father, though the world does not know you, I know you, and they know that you have sent me. —John 17:25

Perception relates to our opinion and how we see things. Are you having a running argument with somebody at the moment? Arguing with your spouse? Having a problem at the office? You are just sticking to your guns on something and everybody but you can see that you are being ridiculous, but you say that you know that you are right. You are making the situation miserable by being a difficult person to work with. Is that possible?

Are you afraid to admit to the possibility that you could be wrong? Are you afraid of what might happen if you lost the argument? Do you worry about what other people would think about you if you gave in or someone just showed that you had gotten it wrong?

Now Jesus had a perception about Himself, that He was equal with God. But He did not think it necessary to hold on to that. In becoming like us He was not even omniscient. This may shock you, but He did not know everything. He admitted He did not know the day or the hour of His own coming. He had to learn.

In addition, Jesus was right. His opinion was infallibly right, but He even let that go. You say, "Well, I know I've got it right. I can't let it go." Jesus did. The amazing thing is that God Almighty did not even take Himself seriously, in this sense. That is your example, and yet you cherish your opinion. Why do you not just be like Jesus? He was right, and He let it go. You could be wrong, and if you are wrong, how much better that you let it go. By the way, if you are right, the truth will come out. It will win in the end. You do not have to do a thing about it. Let Jesus be your example.

Excerpted from Meekness and Majesty (Christian Focus Publications Ltd., 1992, 2000).

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Around the Word in 365 Days

Today's Message

Will My Loved Ones Be Saved?

1 Timothy 2:1-15 All of us have people who are near and dear to us who are not saved. You may even have immediate family members who still have not received God's great gift of salvation.

Several years ago I was on an Evangelism Explosion team. This was a program designed to train Christians in sharing the gospel with others. We were coupled with a trainer who shared the gospel with others as we observed. After one of these sessions, my trainer shared with me that she didn't believe her son would ever be saved. She said he was rebellious and on drugs, and she wondered if it was God's will to save him. I shared with her this scripture: "For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth" (v. 4).

Based on this scripture I showed her how it is God's will to save her son. Then I prayed with her in faith for the salvation of her son.

A year later I was teaching a Bible study when a young girl came up to me afterwards. She said she was visiting and that I did not know her, but I knew her mother-in-law. Then she asked, "Do you remember going on visits with a lady in Evangelism Explosion and you prayed with her about her son?" I answered, "Yes." She continued, "Her son was saved six months ago, and I am his wife. I wanted to thank you for praying for him." What a joy it was for me to know another precious soul was added to God's kingdom and to see such a speedy answer to prayer.

God desires that your loved ones not perish. Whenever you pray for the salvation of another, you can know for sure you are praying God's will in that situation. Maybe there are those you would like to pray for today. Pray with me now for these precious souls.

Father, in the name of Jesus, I humbly ask with faith for the salvation of ____, _____, _______ and _____. I know now that it is Your will to save them. You say in Your Word if we pray anything according to Your will, we have the petitions we desire of You. Thank You for saving these dear souls, and I eagerly await the manifestation on earth of these prayers.

READ: Jeremiah 30:1-31:26; 1 Timothy 2:1-15; Psalm 87:1-7; Proverbs 25:18-19

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Live Extraordinarily

Today's Message

The Fullness of Grace

You probably know that by God's grace you're forgiven and saved, but do you know there is so much more that grace gives us?

"And of His fullness we have all received, and grace for grace" (John 1:16, NKJV). Here is the point so many miss—with grace we can receive the fullness of God's nature! Grace is a gift that not only saved us but also imparted in us the completeness of Jesus. We are in Christ, He is in us and we have the fullness of His nature.

The fundamental problem is that we have cut ourselves off from the flow of grace. Most believe that God's grace has forgiven us from all sin and saved us from hell—which is true—but many are missing the rest: the new nature we have, the power to walk in holiness and the authority to bring heaven's will to earth to meet the needs of humankind.

My life changed dramatically once I discovered that grace includes not only God's amazing forgiveness and the promise of heaven but also His empowerment. Prior to this I struggled, found many of God's instructions too difficult to fulfill, battled inferiority and a poor self-image and wondered why there was so little eternal fruit in my life. However, once the realization came that I now possessed the fullness of God's nature, my life stabilized, blessings flowed and my impact on others for the kingdom increased.

Many believers think that we are merely struggling sinners who've been forgiven—and someday, in heaven, we'll be like Jesus. This fallacy keeps people in bondage and nullifies God's power in their lives. The Bible tells us we are His children: "Beloved, now we are children of God" (1 John 3:2). If we are now His children, then we now have access to fully operate in the character of Jesus. We have the ability to live as He intended us to live from the beginning—extraordinarily! We can live in His image, His likeness, possessing His ability—all through grace!

Grace not only instructs us but also empowers us to live above our own human potential. We've been born again; we're brand-new people. We are free to live an extraordinary life! You are a son or daughter of God. You possess His nature. You were meant for anything but ordinary!

Marked by boldness and passion, John Bevere delivers uncompromising truth through his award-winning curriculum and best-selling books now available in over sixty languages. His newest book is Extraordinary: The Life You're Meant to Live. More information is available at www.ExtraordinaryOnline.org.

 

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