Day By Day by Grace, Morning Reading

Day by Day by Grace

Hebrews 13:20-21

God Glorified by Working Obedience in Us.

Now may the God of peace…make you complete in every good work to do His will, working in you what is well pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.

Let’s ponder once more these tremendous words in Hebrews 13:20-21. When the Lord works in us unto obedience (“what is well pleasing in His sight”), He Himself is the one who appropriately receives the glory (“to whom be glory forever and ever”).

Throughout eternity, God is to be glorified and magnified by all. “I heard the voice of many angels around the throne, the living creatures, and the elders; and the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands, saying with a loud voice: ‘Worthy is the Lamb who was slain to receive power and riches and wisdom, and strength and honor and glory and blessing!’ And every creature which is in heaven and on the earth and under the earth and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, I heard saying: ‘Blessing and honor and glory and power be to Him who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb, forever and ever!'” (Revelation 5:11-13).

     Now, in the midst of time and space, God is also to be glorified in and through our lives. “Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God” (1 Corinthians 10:31). What the Lord wants us to do for His glory is clearly revealed in His commands. In the New Testament, our Lord commands His new covenant servants in many areas. He calls us to genuine love, godly service, earnest prayer, and habitual hospitality: “Let love be without hypocrisy… serving the Lord…continuing steadfastly in prayer…given to hospitality” (Romans 12:9; 11, 12, 13). He instructs us to be truthful, hard-working, kind, and forgiving: “each one speak truth with his neighbor…let him labor, working with his hands what is good…be kind to one another… forgiving one another” (Ephesians 4:25, 28, 32).

These commands declare the attitudes and actions that are “well pleasing in His sight.” These are the spiritual characteristics that He wants to bring forth by His work in us: “working in you what is well pleasing in His sight.” When we seek the Lord to do such work in and through us, He is to be given all the glory and honor.

Glorious God of peace, may You be glorified in my life by making me complete in every good work to do Your will, working in me what is well pleasing in Your sight through Jesus Christ, Amen.

Day By Day by Grace

Day by Day by Grace (June 8th)

God Equipping Us to Do His Will

KJV- Heb 13:20-21  – 20 Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, 21 Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is well pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.

NIV –  Now may the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, equip you with everything good for doing his will, and may he work in us what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.

(n)  that great shepherd of the sheep,

Isa. 40:11> He tends his flock like a shepherd: He gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to his heart; he gently leads those that have young.

Ezk. 34:23> I will place over them one shepherd, my servant David, and he will tend them; he will tend them and be their shepherd.

John 10:11> “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.

(o) through the blood of the everlasting covenant,

Zech.2:11> “Many nations will be joined with the LORD in that day and will become my people. I will live among you and you will know that the LORD Almighty has sent me to you.

Matt.26:28> This is my blood of the[fn] covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.

Luke 22:20> In the same way, after the supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you

(p)   To whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.

Gal.1:5> to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.

Focus Point: verse 13:21 – 

This verse includes two significant results of Christ’s death and resurrection. God works in us to make us the kind of  people that would please him, and he equips us to do the kind of work that would please him. Let God change you from within and then use you to help others. 

our devotional study is from Hebrews 13:20-21. In our previous meditation, we saw that the God of peace makes obedience possible through the shed blood of the crucified, risen Christ. That shed blood forgives our sins, making friends out of formerly disobedient enemies. Furthermore, that shed blood establishes the new covenant of grace, which supplies God’s sufficiency for all our needs, including the developing of an obedient life.

Now, we will reflect upon God being the one who uses His heavenly resources to equip us to do His will. What a hope and joy this is! God Himself is willing to undertake the task of shaping us into His obedient servants: “Now may the God of peace… make you complete in every good work to do His will.”

This term (“complete”) is exceedingly insightful. It speaks of equipping people for their intended tasks, getting them ready to do what they are called to do. To equip means to furnish whatever qualities are necessary to perform the task at hand. To equip means to supply whatever is needed for an assigned purpose. Our calling and purpose in the will of God is that we engage in a great variety of good works. God is willing to equip us “in every good work to do His will.”

Long ago, David was inspired of the Holy Spirit to speak boldly in similar terms. “The LORD will perfect that which concerns me” (Psalm 138:8). In light of David’s calling to obedience (and our own calling to the same), many things concern us. We are called to serve, to sacrifice, to pray, to worship, to love, to evangelize, to edify-and the list continues. How are we to expect progress in such a broad range of obedience? Our confidence is that “The LORD will perfect that which concerns [us].”

As we have asked previously, is this equipping work of God unto obedience an automatic issue? Not at all! Remember, we can resist (Acts 7:51), quench (1 Thessalonians 5:19), and grieve (Ephesians 4:30) the work of the Spirit of grace in our lives. So what is our response to be? Since the Lord is the one who must equip us to do His will, we are to seek Him daily in the word and in prayer. We are to depend humbly upon Him. We must not look to ourselves, to formulas, or to any other false hope.

O God of peace, please do what only You can do. Equip me to obey You in every type of good work that is in Your will. I do not have what it takes to fulfill Your will for me. I often put my hope in vain places. Lord, I now look to You alone, in Jesus’ name, Amen.

Day By Day by Grace, Morning Reading

Day by Day by Grace (April 13th)

Eternal Life and Knowing God

 (John 17:3)

“And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.” 

Ref:    (c) this is eternal life, : John 1:1 > In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

Phil. 2:6  > Who, being in very nature[fn] God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;

Col.1:15 > The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.

Heb.1:3-19  > The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven. So he became as much superior to the angels as the name he has inherited is superior to the In speaking of the angels he says, “He makes his angels spirits, and his servants flames of fire.irs. For to which of the angels did God ever say, “You are my Son; today I have become your Father”[fn]? Or again, “I will be his Father, and he will be my Son” ?  And again, when God brings his firstborn into the world, he says, “Let all God’s angels worship him.”  But about the Son he says, “Your throne, O God, will last for ever and ever; a scepter of justice will be the scepter of your kingdom.  You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness; therefore God, your God, has set you above your companions by anointing you with the oil of joy  He They will perish, but you remain; they will all wear out like a garment. also says, “In the beginning, Lord, you laid the foundations of the earth, and the heavens are the work of your hands. You will roll them up like a robe; like a garment they will be changed. But you remain the same, and your years will never end 

(d) the only true God, 1Cor.8:4   To which of the angels did God ever say, “Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet”[fn]? Are not all angels ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation?

1Thess.1:9 >Are not all angels ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation?   

This statement by the Lord Jesus begins in a very profound manner: “And this is eternal life.” To complete such a statement requires comprehensive truth. If the statement had started with “this is included in eternal life,” many non-comprehensive matters could be used to finish the statement. One could rightly state that forgiveness of sins is included in eternal life. One could properly say that escaping hell and securing heaven are included in eternal life. Likewise, one could say that meaning and purpose for living are included in eternal life. Additionally, one could state that spiritual gifts and spiritual fruit are also included. Furthermore, one could say that fellowship in the body of Christ and new understanding of the Scriptures are included. Nevertheless, none of these individually, nor all of these collectively, are sufficient to complete the statement: “And this is eternal life.”

To finish that profound beginning, one must add an all-encompassing truth. One must speak of the full dimensions of eternal life. What is large enough to complete that majestic opening? Only the one reality of knowing God would be adequate: “that they may know You.” Yes, knowing God is what eternal life is all about. It is only through meeting the Lord that forgiveness is found. It is only by being in Christ that we escape hell and secure heaven. Then, it is only through getting acquainted with the Lord that meaning and purpose for our lives are made real to us. Also, it is only through a growing intimacy of trust in Christ that spiritual gifts and spiritual fruit can properly mature. Furthermore, it is only through an increasing acquaintanceship with the Lord that Christian fellowship and biblical insight are appropriately developed.

These truths certainly concur with those prophetic words of old that promised a new covenant of grace to replace the old covenant of law. “I will make a new covenant…not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers…But this is the covenant that I will make…I will put My law in their minds, and write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people…they all shall know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them” (Jeremiah 31:31-34). Hebrews 8:11 applies these words to followers of Christ. “All shall know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them.” The new covenant provides a growing, intimate acquaintanceship for all who will walk in its terms of grace.

Focus Points:  How do we get eternal life? Jesus tells us clearly here — by knowing God the Father himself through his Son, Jesus Christ. Eternal life requires entering  into a personal relationship with God in Jesus Christ. When we admit our sin and turn away from it. Christ’s love lives in us by the Holy Spirit.

Day By Day by Grace, Spiritual Understandings

The Contrary Desires of the Flesh and the Spirit

For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish.

(Galatians 5:17

For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh

Rom.7:23>But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members.

so that you do not do the things that you wish.

Rom.7:15>For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I.

Focus point:

  Every believer in Christ has had the frustrating experience of wanting to do what pleases the Lord, but being unable to actually accomplish such. We are told here that a spiritual struggle is behind that failure. “For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh.” The Spirit of God dwells within our lives. He is the “Spirit of holiness” (Romans 1:4). He desires that we be “partakers of His holiness” (Hebrews 12:10) and thereby walk in godliness. However, the flesh (natural humanity) is also present in our lives. The natural desires of man are not toward holiness, but rather toward self-indulgence and self-sufficiency. Thus, what the Spirit desires and what our flesh craves are set against each other. “These are contrary to one another.” The consequence of this internal conflict is “that you do not do the things that you wish.” Even though godly desires develop in us as new creatures in Christ, we find ourselves unable to implement these new longings by our good intentions.
The Apostle Paul gave testimony to his own failure in this battle. “For the good that I will to do, I do not do; but the evil I will not to do, that I practice” (Romans 7:19). The problem was that Paul’s personal resources (the flesh) were not adequate to produce the desired results. “For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh) nothing good dwells; for to will is present with me, but how to perform what is good I do not find” (Romans 7:18). Yes, Paul had some godly desires. “For I delight in the law of God according to the inward man” (Romans 7:22). Nevertheless, there was a problem that he could not resolve on his own. “But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members” (Romans 7:23). A tendency to sin that dwelt in Paul’s human members (his body, his brain) pulled him down to defeat. He needed help.
Access to that necessary divine rescue was through a humble cry for a deliverer. “O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?” (Romans 7:24). This appropriate confession of the spiritual bankruptcy of his flesh led to another confession of certain victory. “I thank God-[it is] through Jesus Christ our Lord!” (Romans 7:25). This humble turning from self to Christ allows one to walk in the Spirit, living by His victorious resources. “For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death” (Romans 8:2).
Dear Jesus, Mighty Deliverer, I humbly admit that I am not able to implement by my best efforts the godly desires that are developing in me. I need You, Lord. So many times I have had holy intentions that ended up in carnal defeat. So, Lord, I cry out to You to deliver me from my present struggles, by the power of Your Holy Spirit, Amen.

A Message for Today, Day By Day by Grace, My Voicec

Day by Day by Grace Humility and Grace

1 Peter 5:5

In the same way, you younger men must accept the authority of the elders. And all of you, serve each other in humility, for
“God opposes the proud
but favors the humble.”

Focus point: Both young and old can benefit from Peter’s instructions. Pride often keeps older people from trying to understand young people and keeps young people from listening to those who are older, Peter told both young and old to he humble and to serve each other. Young men should follow the leadership of older men, who should lead by example. Respect those who are older than you, listen to those younger than you, and be humble enough to admit that you can learn from each other.

Day By Day by Grace

Day by day by Grace 12-12-17

Acts 20:24  (x) none of these things move me,

Rom.8:35> Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?

2Cor.4:16>    For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day.

(y) that I might finish my course

1Cor.9:24-27>  Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain. And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible. I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air: But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.

(z) and the ministry

Acts 1:17>   For he was numbered with us, and had obtained part of this ministry.

(a) which I have received of the Lord Jesus,  to testify of the gospel of the grace of God.

Gal.1:1> Paul, an apostle, (not of men, neither by man, but by Jesus Christ, and God the Father, who raised him from the dead;)

The Apostle Paul had a special stewardship entrusted to Him by God’s grace. “If indeed you have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which was given to me for you” (Ephesians 3:2). This special calling given to him by God concerned the miracle of Jew and Gentile being made one in Christ (as the body of Christ): “that the Gentiles should be fellow heirs, of the same body, and partakers of His promise in Christ through the gospel” (Ephesians 3:6). This wondrous “mystery of Christ” (Ephesians 3:4) was a distinctive emphasis of his ministry: “Of which I became a minister according to the gift of the grace of God given to me by the effective working of His power.” Paul repeatedly stated that this ministry calling was given to him by grace. “To me, who am less than the least of all the saints, this grace was given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ.”
On other occasions, Paul spoke of his ministry without referring to this special emphasis of Jews and Gentiles becoming one in Christ. Still, he described his ministry in the same terms of grace given to him. “According to the grace of God which was given to me, as a wise master builder I have laid the foundation”

(1 Corinthians 3:10). Here, Paul views his service as a spiritual builder laying a spiritual foundation for the construction of godly lives. God’s grace equipped him and sustained him in such service.
We are all called to serve our Master. In our hearts there is a desire to be used of our King. How comforting to know that our ministry will develop by God’s grace given to us. Again, humble dependence is the path to such grace for ministry. “To me, who am less than the least of all the saints, this grace was given.”
Lord Jesus, I long to serve You in ministry. I rejoice that ministry depends upon Your grace, not my abilities. Lord, I humbly bow before You, seeking You for the necessary grace to serve You in any way that You desire, in Your gracious name, Amen.

Day By Day by Grace, Uncategorized

1 Corinthians 1:4/ Give, the Language of Grace

I thank my God always on your behalf, for the grace of God which is given you by Jesus Christ;