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Devotion for Thursday, April 30, 2015


“In that day the Lord will punish the powers in the heavens above and the kings on the earth below.  They will be herded together like prisoners bound in a dungeon; they will be shut up in prison and be punished after many days.”  (Isaiah 24:21-22)

They will be . . . like.  The Lord uses words to help describe what we cannot yet understand.  Every piece of wickedness will be eliminated.  All those who do evil will stand before the Lord.  No one will go unpunished.  Those who are in Christ have the hope of what Christ has done, that He has taken our sins upon Himself in order that those who are in Him might be with Him forever.

Lord, help me see that You have covered every event in grace for those who are in You.  Though, in this age, it is a time of suffering and pain, yet, in Your eternal purpose, there is always hope and a future.  Guide me ever deeper into Your Word that I may live according to Your Word and remain in the hope You have given.  May I be your faithful follower this day, doing what is pleasing in Your sight.  Amen.

Devotion for Wednesday, April 29, 2015


“The earth is broken up, the earth is split asunder, the earth is violently shaken.  The earth reels like a drunkard, it sways like a hut in the wind; so heavy upon it is the guilt of its rebellion that it falls – never to rise again.”  (Isaiah 24:19-20)

After all the times of calamity upon the earth, the day will come when all in this evil generation will pass away and the day of the Lord will come.  Until that time, there will be ups and downs, times we call good and times of calamity, but the true peace of the Lord, which is given to those who believe, provides a window into the time of the everlasting peace which the Lord is establishing.

Lord, I am so fickle that I sway with the winds of the times.  I doubt, worry, and become anxious and forget that You have told me ahead of time of these things which will come to pass.  Help me to live in the hope You have already given, knowing that in You, everything will come to pass just as You have spoken it.  Guide me into this faith You have given me that I may live as one who believes.

Thank You, Lord, for today.  Every day that You give is a gift.  Help me see what You have given and be glad in it.  Take away from me the anxiety and worry that comes in this age and replace it with strength of character and the hope that never fails.  May I be a useful instrument in Your hands this day, knowing that in You alone is there hope and a glorious future without end.  Amen.

Devotion for Tuesday, April 28, 2015


“Terror and pit and snare await you, people of the earth.  Whoever flees at the sound of terror  will fall into a pit; whoever climbs out of the pit will be caught in a snare.  The floodgates of the heavens are opened, the foundations of the earth shake.”  (Isaiah 24:17-18)

When calamity comes, those who are not looking to the Lord will do what is right in their own minds.  Look to the Lord and in every time, take instruction from Him.  Do not rely upon yourself, but upon the Lord who lifts up everyone to Himself that they might know that He is Lord.  Turn to the Lord while You may, knowing that in Him is life and hope.

Lord, generation after generation turns to themselves and the way they believe is right in their own eyes.  Help me see clearly that in You alone is the future, for You are the Creator of all things, including the future.  Guide me into Your never failing arms that I may have hope in every situation, knowing that You are able to bring to pass all things that You have promised.

Thank You, Lord, for showing the way by coming as one of us, showing that You know what it is like to experience life, including a life that ended in a gruesome death.  Help me learn from Your humble ways that in good times and bad, I would see that You lead all who are in You toward the eternal purpose of hope and glory with You that begins now and never ends.  Amen.

Devotion for Monday, April 27, 2015


“Therefore in the east give glory to the Lord; exalt the name of the Lord, the God of Israel, in the islands of the sea.  From the ends of the earth we hear singing: “Glory to the Righteous One.” But I said, “I waste away, I waste away!  Woe to me!  The treacherous betray!  With treachery the treacherous betray!”  (Isaiah 24:15-16)

In whom will you trust?  The Lord is before the beginning and will be forever.  The Lord is the One who created all things.  Only in the Lord is there hope and a future.  Trust in the Lord with all that you are, knowing that only in Him will you find what is right and true and everlasting.  Yes, in this world there will be times of calamity and despair, but through this season and beyond, the Lord of glory is there.

Lord, I do get caught up in this sinful world and do not see beyond the moment.  Help me step back and see that You alone are able to do what You purpose and that what You have promised is forever.  Guide me into Your never failing love, knowing that in You alone is there hope and a future.  Keep me from straying, moving away from what You have purposed.  Keep me close to You.

Lord, You have come in the flesh that all who turn to You would learn how to live eternally.  Move me away from this rebellious life that seeks for itself and into life as You have created it to be lived.  Guide me ever deeper into the mysteries of faith that I may grow according to Your purpose.  May I be faithful this day in the admonition of Your love, loving others as You have loved me.  Amen.

Devotion for Sunday, April 26, 2015


“So will it be on the earth and among the nations, as when an olive tree is beaten, or as when gleanings are left after the grape harvest.  They raise their voices, they shout for joy; from the west they acclaim the Lord’s majesty.”  (Isaiah 24:13-14)

After the storms of winter comes spring.  The Lord tells His story with each passing year.  The times of trials come and then comes new life.  But the people of the earth will go through trials and tribulations because of what sin has done.  The Lord’s majesty is above all, and in spite of what may happen here, those who come to the Lord acclaim who He is and praise Him.

Lord, help me to not be conditional in this love that You have showed me by grace, through Christ.  Guide me into a life of faith that lives according to Your purpose and in Your will.  Help me see that in You alone is there life, a future and hope.  Whether good, or bad, blessing or bane, guide me to learn how to praise You in every season knowing that You alone are worthy and that Your work will endure forever.

Lord Jesus, You have called me into a life like Yours.  Help me learn from You how to be humble and serve others each day, carrying out the commandment to love others as You have loved us.  May I be faithful in all that You give me to do, not listening to those who are committed to living a sinful life, knowing that You will guide me today and every day to live into the glory You promise for those who live by faith.  Amen.

Faith Leaders Reaffirm Commitment to Marriage and Religious Liberty

  • April 25, 2015 - 6:27 pm
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April 23, 2015

WASHINGTON—A few days before the U.S. Supreme Court hears oral arguments on the rights of states to define marriage as the union of one man and one woman, more than 30 religious leaders representing diverse faith communities throughout the United States have reaffirmed their shared commitment to marriage and religious freedom. An open letter entitled “The Defense of Marriage and the Right of Religious Freedom: Reaffirming a Shared Witness” was issued to all in positions of public service on April 23.

Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz of Louisville, Kentucky, president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), signed the open letter and was joined by Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone of San Francisco, chairman of the USCCB Subcommittee for the Promotion and Defense of Marriage; Archbishop William E. Lori of Baltimore, chairman of the USCCB Ad Hoc Committee on Religious Liberty; and Bishop Richard J. Malone of Buffalo, New York, chairman of the Committee on Laity, Marriage, Family Life and Youth.

“We hope this letter serves as an encouragement to all of us, especially those dedicated to public service, to continue to promote both marriage and religious freedom as integral to a healthy and free society,” said Archbishop Kurtz. “Marriage as the union of one man and one woman provides the best context for the birth and rearing of children and should be specially protected by law. The law, when it upholds the unique meaning of marriage, is simply recognizing an objective reality, not constructing one: children always have a mother and a father and deserve to be loved and raised by both of them. Society should work to strengthen the unique bond between husband and wife, knowing that strong marriages build stronger communities.”

The religious leaders stressed the need for civility and mutual respect, writing, “Government should protect the rights of those with differing views of marriage to express their beliefs and convictions without fear of intimidation, marginalization or unwarranted charges that their values imply hostility, animosity, or hatred of others.”

The leaders close with a statement of their duty and love towards all: “In this and in all that we do, we are motivated by our duty to love God and neighbor. This love extends to all those who disagree with us on this issue. The well-being of men, women, and the children they conceive compels us to stand for marriage as between one man and one woman.”

The letter is available at: and follows two previous open letters: “The Protection of Marriage: A Shared Commitment,” issued December 6, 2010, and “Marriage and Religious Freedom: Fundamental Goods That Stand or Fall Together,” issued January 12, 2012, which are available at

Saturday, April 25, 2015 Devotion



“In the streets they cry out for wine; all joy turns to gloom, all joyful sounds are banished from the earth.  The city is left in ruins, its gate is battered to pieces.”  (Isaiah 24:11-12)

When calamity comes, people cry out for their diversions, but still, they will not cry out to the Lord.  We should not cry out to the Lord only in times of peril, but at all times and know that the Lord is good.  Seek the Lord while He may be found. Do not ask Him to give you what has brought on the destruction.  The Lord will tear down all walls, and what He brings is good and everlasting.

Lord, help me understand that only in You is there truly a future.  The world goes through its cadence and does the same thing over and over again. Wrapped in a different guise, it’s the same.  Help me break out of the bondage of this sinful life by clinging to the hope You give in salvation that I may live for You and the purpose which for which You have created us.

Thank You, Lord, for the gift of salvation which is more than a future promise.  Help me live in the salvation You bring by living today in the truth of Your Word.  Bring Your Word to mind and help me meditate on Your Word, knowing that You are giving me life and meaning in all that You give.  May I be faithful to You this day in the hope of glory You have given me through Christ my Savior.  Amen.

Devotion for Friday, April 24, 2015


“No longer do they drink wine with a song; the beer is bitter to its drinkers.  The ruined city lies desolate; the entrance to every house is barred.”  (Isaiah 24:9, 10)

Civilizations come and go.  Those who live as though what this sinful world provides is forever live in a false hope and are deluded by the momentary things they think are good.  City after city has fallen into ruins, and the deluded always think that it cannot happen to them.  But it does.  The ages come and go, and the will of the Lord is unfolding before our eyes.

Lord, remind me again that all of the ages are in Your hands, and that You are God, and there is no other.  Help me to see clearly that in You alone is there hope and a future.  Keep me from being deluded by the wine of this age, that I may live according to Your purposes.  Help me see that in You alone is there life.  May I learn from You, who teaches humility and willing service to others.

Thank You, Lord Jesus, for being the example of what it means to be a humble servant.  In all situations, You graciously gave to those who did not deserve it and helped those who were helpless.  By your example, lead me today, that I would faithfully live in the hope You give to those who walk by Your grace and follow You.  May I be this day, and every day, Your faithful follower.  Amen.

Theological cleansing in PCUSA

  • April 23, 2015 - 12:36 pm
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Lutheran Core has been involved in upholding the authority of Scripture in the ELCA for a decade. Our ecumenical partners undergo the same struggle as we do. Here is a rare example of journalism, a fair and balanced reporting of what is happening. In it is news of a pastor, Rev. Wayne Lowe, who has been removed from his PCUSA pulpit for daring to uphold what the whole presbytery once believed:

“There is a theological cleansing happening in the Presbyterian Church. Biblical traditionalists like the Rev. Wayne Lowe, formerly of Faith Presbyterian Church in Harrisburg, are being pilloried and ousted for their conservative views and refusal to embrace the denomination’s new outlook on gay marriage. Lowe was dismissed; he has resigned his affiliation with PCUSA.”

Read “Presbyterian Church: Evangelicals suddenly on the wrong side in gay marriage debate” at

Devotion for Thursday, April 23, 2015


“The new wine dries up and the vine withers; all the merrymakers groan.  The joyful timbrels are stilled, the noise of the revelers has stopped, the joyful harp is silent.”  (Isaiah 24:7, 8)

There are always seasons in which that which is familiar goes away, replaced by the reality that sin brings on.  For each of us, this describes the truth that death brings.  All our merrymaking is gone and what is left is silence and, for those who are not in the Lord, lament.  We are called to look forward to the rest the Lord brings, and to see that He will one day make all things new.

Lord, help me to not be as those whose hope is only in merrymaking.  Guide me to see the greater things that You are preparing for those who will be with You forever.  Guide me to live life not just in this world, but also preparing for what is to come.  Help me in every circumstance to understand that in You alone is there hope and a future.

May I be guided by Your Spirit this day, O Lord, that no matter what may come, I would hold hold fast not to the circumstances of this world, but to the truth that You are the God of every age.  Help me humbly and willingly live in this day, knowing that in You alone is there a future and hope.  May I be faithful to the call You have given me this day, doing what You guide me to do and then do it faithfully.  Amen.