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Devotion for Saturday, January 31, 2015

 

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“In their streets they have girded themselves with sackcloth; On their housetops and in their squares Everyone is wailing, dissolved in tears.  Heshbon and Elealeh also cry out, their voice is heard all the way to Jahaz; therefore the armed men of Moab cry aloud; His soul trembles within him.”  (Isaiah 15:4, 5)

When punishing calamity comes, what do the people do?  Do they simply lament, or do they repent?  The purpose of punishment is to get our attention and correct what is wrong.  Often, like sheep, we simply move along to the slaughter.  The Lord allows punishment to drive us to Him.  Alas, rather than turning to the Lord, they turn away and blame the Lord for what wickedness has done.

Lord, help me not blame You for sin in the world.  There is much wickedness in this world and You are not the cause.  Help me see that regardless the situation, You have sent hope in the message of salvation You have prepared through Christ.  Guide me into hope, not resting in the desire to seek immediate answers, knowing that all things are now, as they always have been, in Your hands.

Thank You, Lord, for the promise You have given that in every situation You are there.  Mature my faith so that when calamity comes, I do not blame You for the calamity.  Guide me into right thinking, that I may seek You in all the seasons of life knowing that You are there and will protect me from evil.  May I live today by the grace You give, knowing that only in You will I find the final answer to life’s difficulties.  Amen.

 

Devotion for Friday, January 30, 2015

 

“Moab wails over Nebo and Medeba; everyone’s head is bald and every beard is cut off.”  (Isaiah 15:3)

Shaming is often a retribution for those who are conquered.  Those who practice wickedness are shamed, but often, they do not realize it until what they have done has come home to roost, and they become a demonstration of shame.  The Lord has told us that there is nothing hidden that will not be revealed, nor any secret that will not be known.  Live in such a way that there is no hidden shame to be revealed.

Lord, help me see in life that what I do matters.  Guide me to live in such a way that I seek obedience in all things, whether or not those around me see what I am doing.  Help me live obediently that I may have no shame when all is revealed.  Guide me in faithfulness to live seeking Your approval in all things, not out of fear of shaming, but because it is the right way to live.

Thank You, Lord,  for giving me grace to cover the shame of past deeds.  Help me live this day forward trusting in Your grace and seeking to learn obedience.  Help me know that in You I have hope and that hope cannot be taken away from me.  Help me share the hope You give with others that they too may not see shame in their future, but the hope that only You give.  Amen.

Devotion for Thursday, January 29, 2015

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“Surely in a night Ar of Moab is devastated and ruined; surely in a night Kir of Moab is  devastated and ruined.  They have gone up to the temple and to Dibon, even to the high places to weep.”  (Isaiah 15:1, 2)

Lord, You will bring to naught all the devices of sinful man. Their ways will perish.  Though they seem  powerful for a day, they are quickly replaced by another.  The power of this world is fleeting and illusory.  Only Your authority and power are forever.  Guide me into the truth that all authority is in Your hands and that the fleeting times of this world come and go over the ages.

Lord, history has always been in Your hands.  Guide me into the truth that although things may seem hopeless at times, all hope rests in You alone who will bring to pass all that You have declared.  Guide me deeper into the mystery of this faith You have given me that I would grow in Your likeness and live according to Your will.  Help me learn faithfulness and keep me always in the eternal hope You alone can give.

Thank You, Lord, for all that You have done to bring assurance into my life that in spite of circumstances, You are always there.  Help me live in the joy You have prepared for those who faithfully follow You and keep me close to Your never-failing love which sustains me today and every day.  May the truth of Your presence in my life be evident to all whom I meet, that they too may join in the eternal hope You alone offer.  Amen.

Devotion for Wednesday, January 28, 2015

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“How then will one answer the messengers of the nation?  That the Lord has founded Zion, and the afflicted of His people will seek refuge in it.”  (Isaiah 14:32)

Zion is the abode of the faithful, it is the new Jerusalem.  The Lord has prepared a place for those who will follow Him.  All are invited, but only those who follow the Lord become her citizens.  Though it may seem the same place in this world, it is the abode of the eternal kingdom in this world, that place of refuge that only the faithful may inhabit, the place of the peace which surpasses all understanding.

Lord, help me increase in my understanding of the place of refuge You grant to Your faithful that I may see that I am a citizen of the place of refuge, Zion.  Guide me into the peace You offer in the midst of this turbulent and crazy world, that I may do the work You give me to do, knowing that only in You is there hope and rest.  Lead me in Zion to be faithful to the call You have given me.

Thank You, Lord,  for giving me hope in the midst of a hopeless world.  Guide me in Your ways that I would increase in the knowledge of  You and be at rest in the peace You give.  May that peace exude from me that others would see what You offer and join with the invitation You give that all might not be unbelieving and come to You and give up their weariness.  Amen.

Devotion for Tuesday, January 27, 2015

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“Those who are most helpless will eat, and the needy will lie down in security; I will destroy your root with famine, and it will kill off your survivors.  Wail, O gate; cry, O city; melt away, O Philistia, all of you; for smoke comes from the north, and there is no straggler in his ranks.”  (Isaiah 14:30, 31)

Although calamity may come, the Lord provides for the needy.  The Lord takes care of those who are unable to take care of themselves, but He punishes the evil doer.  Do not trust in the schemes of man, but trust in the Word of the Lord.  It will come to pass as He has spoken it.  The Word of the Lord is sure.

Lord, help me understand that throughout the ages, there are times of relative peace and times of war, but through it all, You are there.  Guide me to trust in Your provision, knowing that in You alone is there true comfort and assurance.  Guide me into the gentleness of Your ways and the hope You give in every circumstance with the truth that You are always there, bringing about Your will in this sinful generation.

Thank You, Lord, that You have given a promise for every time of need.  Thank You for giving hope for every time of calamity.  Help me this day to be a comfort to others as You have comforted me, knowing that only in You is there truly hope and a future.  May I be faithful this day, doing what You would have me do, knowing that everything I do in Your name will lift not only me but others up in Your truth.  Amen.

Devotion for Monday, January 26, 2015

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“In the year that King Ahaz died this oracle came:  Do not rejoice, O Philistia, all of you, because the rod that struck you is broken; for from the serpent’s root a viper will come out, and its fruit will be a flying serpent.” (Isaiah 14:28, 29)

There are those who will arise that come against God and His people.  When fruit falls to the ground, from it grows something else.  Out of the new plant comes new life.  In this case, a new terror.  What was powerful before is broken and the new power comes as a destroyer.  The Word of the Lord speaks warning so that we might turn to Him and trust that He does hold all things in His hands.

Lord, Help me not to be alarmed, but comforted by the truth that Your Word will come to pass as You have spoken it.  Guide me in understanding that I would live into this life to which You have called me.  Guide me in the truth of Your Word today and every day that I would not be tossed about by this world and instead live steadfast in the truth that You alone are the Sovereign God.

Lord, You have called me to live by faith, that is, to trust in You in every circumstance.  Help me, I pray, to overcome my doubts and fears and to live according to all that You have said.  Grow in me maturity and willingness to live the discipline You have proclaimed. May I be faithful this day to the calling You have given me, trusting that You will shall be done.  Amen.

Devotion for Sunday, January 25, 2015

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“This is the plan devised against the whole earth; and this is the hand that is stretched out against all the nations.  For the Lord of hosts has planned, and who can frustrate it? And as for His stretched-out hand, who can turn it back?”  (Isaiah 14:26, 27)

Those who fight against the Lord may seem, for a while, to progress, but their plans are thwarted.  We are in a spiritual battle that has been raging for this age, but the battle was lost at the cross, where Christ showed his victory.  In the last day, the final battle will show the victory over death.  No one is able to frustrate the plans of the Lord.  Either live under a rebellion that has already lost, or else follow the Lord.  Those are the two options.

Lord, help me see that in the ups and downs of this life and all that comes, Your hand is still there as the rebellion continues, guiding and directing for the sake of those who will come to You.  Keep me close to You, knowing that You have already won the war, even if the battle rages on.  Keep me in Your will and guide me in Your ways that I would hold fast to what You have already declared.

Thank You, Lord, for revealing to the nations the truth of what You have done, what You are doing, and what You will do.  Help me see all three so that I may live into the purpose for which You have called me.  Guide me in Your precepts today, knowing that only in You is there a real future.  May I be faithful to the calling You have given me, living according to Your purpose this day.  Amen.

Devotion for Saturday, January 24, 2015

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“The Lord of hosts has sworn saying, “Surely, just as I have intended so it has happened, and just as I have planned so it will stand, to break Assyria in My land, and I will trample him on My mountains. Then his yoke will be removed from them and his burden removed from their shoulder.”  (Isaiah 14:24, 25)

No matter the nation that rises against the Lord, He will break them.  Yet, the nations will rise against the Lord and try Him.  This has happened before and it will happen again until the last day when the Lord forever breaks the bow of the one who comes against Him, and He ushers in His glorious and gentle reign.  The Lord alone holds all power and authority and all things are in His hands.

Lord, help me understand clearly that no matter what the day looks like, all ages are in Your hands.  Guide me to live knowing that You alone are Sovereign, and nothing is able to overcome the truth that You alone are the One who holds all power and authority.  You have said it and done it and will accomplish all that You have said.  Help me live by faith and not by sight.

Lord, so many things have come to pass as You have spoken them that there is no reason for me not to trust in what You say will come to pass in the days ahead.  Help me to live by the faith You give, knowing that Your Word will come to pass.  May I be found faithful this day, trusting in You and not in circumstances. May I share with others through the actions of my life that You alone are Lord and God.  Amen.

Devotion for Friday, January 23, 2015

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“I will rise up against them,” declares the Lord of hosts, “and will cut off from Babylon name and survivors, offspring and posterity,” declares the Lord.  I will also make it a possession for the hedgehog and swamps of water, and I will sweep it with the broom of destruction,” declares the Lord of hosts.”  (Isaiah 14:22, 23)

When the Lord removes those who were once powerful, it is as He declares.  What was once Babylon is no more.  It is a pile of rubble.  The Lord is Sovereign, and though there are those who rise for a moment to challenge Him, none can stand before Him.  The day is surely coming when all will bow before the Lord and declare that He alone is Lord and there is no other.

Lord, seasons in this sinful world come and go, but You are steadfast and faithful.  Help me to live in the truth that You alone endure for You are from before time and will always be.  Guide me into Your wisdom that I would not live in the fickleness of this age, but in the truth of the unending age that knows that You alone are God. There is no other.  Help me to learn faithfulness.

Thank You, Lord, for your prophets whose word time and again comes to pass just as You have declared it.  Guide me to live today in the wisdom You give that I may be a faithful disciple trusting in You above all things.  May the light of Your countenance shine through me that others may know that I serve You, the Lord of lords and King of kings.  May I be Your faithful servant this day.  Amen.

Devotion for Thursday, January 22, 2015

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“You will not be united with them in burial, because you have ruined your country, you have slain your people.  May the offspring of evildoers not be mentioned forever.  Prepare for his sons a place of slaughter because of the iniquity of their fathers.  They must not arise and take possession of the earth and fill the face of the world with cities.”  (Isaiah 14:20, 21)

Evil will fail. Those who lift up evil as good will be forgotten when the Lord ushers in His eternal kingdom.  Although it may seem for a moment that those who use tyranny and chaos are powerful, they are not. The seeming power is an illusion.  However, the evil men are allowed their moment for God’s purpose, and He alone will bring all things together according to His plan, which is laid out from the beginning.

Lord, there are many times when I do not understand evil in this world.  I see it working and wonder why You do not stop it, yet, You are Sovereign.  Help me to know that You allow what happens to happen for a season and for a reason.  Guide me into wisdom based upon a faith that trusts You in all things, knowing they are now, as always, in Your hands.

Thank You, Lord,  for submitting Yourself to the worst evil on behalf of us all.  You have showed that Your power comes in the weakness You displayed on the cross. That it is the power that overcomes.  Help me trust You as You lead, for You know what is coming, and what You have planned.  Help me trust in You now and always.  Amen.