Daily Devotional

January 27, 2021 ~ JOURNEY THROUGH THE BIBLE CHRONOLOGICALLY

JANUARY 27 READINGS…Job 30:1-31:40.
We come to Job’s final defense. It begins with Job once again lamenting the lack of both empathy and understanding from those who would offer him counsel. It is a reminder to us that unsolicited advice, without compassion or an attempt to understand, comes off as callous and even judgmental. There is no attempt to bring healing and be helpful in the counsel given by the “friends” of Job. Their words become mockery in the ears of Job. Their words are cruel and absent any genuine concern for Job or for his well being. Job was troubled and he needed someone who really cared about him to speak into his situation and bring real help. These “counselors” merely wanted to be proved right, self justified, and heard. They should have sought to care, spend real time with Job to understand, and then give the words that actually bring help and healing to Job.
Job concludes his speaking with a statement of his innocence. Job honestly wanted to understand why these things were happening to him. He had much of the same understanding as his contemporaries did concerning that when bad things happened to people, they must have deserved it. That is why Job was struggling so much with what was happening to him…he knew that he was right before God. And if we would remember it was God Himself that at the beginning of this book that declared that Job was a righteous man. Job goes through his walk and evaluates that he has kept his eyes and mind from lust…he had spoken truth…he had treated his servants honestly…he ministered to the poor and orphans…he was not boastful about his riches…he never rejoiced when others had fallen into hard times…and finally he was honest about his own shortcomings and sins. He was genuinely wondering what was happening to him. Have you ever felt that way? How did you work through it? We need to realize that there are not always answers this side of heaven.
Please share any insights that you have from today’s readings. I continually pray that each of you are being nourished and nurtured by the Word of God.
TOMORROW’S READINGS… Job 32:1-34:37.

January 26, 2021 ~ JOURNEY THROUGH THE BIBLE CHRONOLOGICALLY

JANUARY 26 READINGS…Job 26:1-29:25.

In today’s reading we come to the end of the input from Job’s three friends…Eliphaz, Bildad, and Zophar. In a couple of days, we will meet and hear from another of Job’s friends, Elihu. Job responds to Bildad one more time…reminding him that his input is of no help whatsoever. Bildad speaks with empty platitudes. Job tells him that though Bildad was speaking there was no wisdom in his words. He even challenges Bildad as to what spirits were speaking through him. Advice is cheap and readily available…especially from those who care little for others as human beings, but more about sharing their great “wisdom” and “agendas” to others. Be careful of those who are always anxious to share their opinion into your situation. I would rather receive from those who are hesitant to begin telling me how to be right…to do right…and be made right.

The second part of our readings today is all from Job. Job begins with standing on his integrity, and that he would never concede that his “advisor’s” input is correct. Job speaks of the reality that there are times that the wicked do prosper…but that time is limited…for finally God will deal justly with the wicked. He speaks of how difficult it is for people to find both wisdom and understanding…its never been easy for we mere mortals to grasp these two. I believe that is why James tells us to ask the Lord for it. We see Job becoming melancholy, as he remembers the good times of old. Sometimes in the midst of life happening to us, especially when life is difficult, that all we have to hold onto are the memories. Though we are told not to live in the past…those memories are gifts of God that, at times, will carry us through those tough times. We need to remember that whatever we may go through, God is always faithfully there, and fully who He always is.

Please share any insights that you have from today’s meetings. I know you are being blessed as you spend time in the Lord’s Word.

TOMORROW’S READINGS…Job 30:1-31:40.

January 25, 2021 ~ JOURNEY THROUGH THE BIBLE CHRONOLOGICALLY

JANUARY 25 READINGS…Job 22:1-25:6.
Before we get into today’s readings we must go back to something very important that we read yesterday. As you know on weekends there is no devotional, so I want to share this from yesterday found in Job 19:25-27…“But as for me, I know that my Redeemer lives,
and he will stand upon the earth at last.
And after my body has decayed,
yet in my body I will see God!
I will see him for myself.
Yes, I will see him with my own eyes.
I am overwhelmed at the thought!”
I hope you all saw the incredible truths that Job spoke here. He speaks of his Redeemer…a reference to the coming Messiah. He spoke that Messiah would stand upon the earth. And Job spoke of his own resurrection…as after his body decay’s he will actually see the Messiah with his own eyes. These are incredible statements of faith from a man who lived in the time of the Patriarch’s. Job’s hope is our hope. Our Redeemer has come…our Redeemer redeemed us with His blood on Calvary…our Redeemer died, was buried, and rose from the grave and is alive every more…our Redeemer is coming again and every believers who has died will be raised, and every one alive, will see Him with their own eyes!
In today’s reading Eliphaz’s take his accusations against Job to the next level. He has begun to specify what particular sins he believes that Job must be guilty of. He is speaking from a place of ignorance, but none the less of great personal piety. He unloads his bag of things that Job “must” have done for God to be punishing him. The disciples did this with the man born blind…”Who sinned that he would be born blind, him or his parents?” Jesus said, “Neither, but for the glory of God.” Do we look at people who are going through hard times and assume they must have sinned? What happens when hard times hit us? Who sinned then? Could not what we go through be part of God’s great plan that brings glory to Him?
Finally, Job asks the question that has plagued mankind since creation…”Why do the wicked prosper?” The short answer is that they do…for a season. But, God is just…everyone will have their time of judgment before Him…and He will repay, He said so. Keep walking in the Holy Spirit…stay obedient to Christ in all things…trust God in the good and in the bad…know that God will fulfill every promise He has given you in Christ Jesus…and be assured that the wicked will be judged by our righteous and holy God!
Please share any insights that you have in today’s readings. Keep faithful in your time in the Word…it is our food from God. Take the words off the page and live them in obedience to God.
TOMORROW’S READINGS…Job 26:1-29:25.

January 22, 2021 ~ JOURNEY THROUGH THE BIBLE CHRONOLOGICALLY

JANUARY 22 READINGS…Job 12:1-14:22.
Today’s reading reveals much to us about Job. Job clearly knew the Lord. Many of his statements demonstrate the Lord has given him understanding of many truths about God. God is in control…and God is sovereign. Which means that God does not answer to anyone concerning what He does. Who can judge God? Who can tell God that what He is doing, or allowing, is not fair or right? Job knew deep within His heart that he had not sinned against God…yet his “friends” are confident that all the things Job is going through is a result of his sin. They all have been preaching to him…when they need to be loving on him. Our theology is meaningless if they it does not move us to love one another, and meet each other’s needs like Jesus did.
Job was an honest man…he was a man of integrity. This was true of his dealings with other men, and this was true of his dealings with God. He felt abandoned of God, and he sincerely wanted to know why. He could not understand why God had brought this upon him…though he acknowledges that God can do what He wants to do…and who can challenge Him, or judge Him. But Job wanted to have the opportunity to plead his case…and even in doing so he declares that only by the grace and permission of God could he do that. I have long felt that we believers have a habit of dishonesty with God…and I also believe that what God wants from us is honesty and genuineness. One thing about Job that we can all learn is to fear and honor God, and at the same time always approach Him with intergrity.
Please share your thoughts. I know Job can get tedious, but hang in there with your readings…the Holy Spirit is teaching us so much. Be blessed as you read.
TOMORROW’S READINGS…Job 15:1-18:21.

January 21, 2021 ~ JOURNEY THROUGH THE BIBLE CHRONOLOGICALLY

JANUARY 21 READINGS…Job 8:1-11:20.
In today’s readings two more of Job’s “friends” add their opinions to Job’s dilemma. First, Bildad pretty much tells Job that he needs to stop talking…to stop sharing his wondering why all these things have come upon him…stop asking God where He is in all this. Bildad seems to think he must defend God against Job’s honest inquiries. Then Zophar joins in and tells Job again to be quiet…his words are empty and useless. Zophar’s piety requires him to tell Job that he cannot understand God, no one can…then Zophar begins to explain the God that nobody can understand. Zophar is impressed with his own understanding of theology. Both of these “friends”, like Eliphaz, remind Job that he must have sinned or God would not be punishing him.
Job continues to call out to God. He doesn’t understand, and in his misery he is moved to the place of genuine despair. Have you ever been there? Has life ever come crashing down on you to the place of despair? Have you ever called out to God and asked Him if He is there? Have you ever wonder why God would allow you to go through such hard things? If we are honest, I believe we would all have to confess that we have been there, to one degree or another. I want to remind you that we have a BIG God! He is big enough to handle our honest inquiries. He doesn’t answer to us, that is for sure…but He is open to our questions, and He is merciful in His answers. As we go through life we are promised the presence of the Lord…that presence means that not only is He there, but He is active in His presence. Call out to Him…share your heart with Him…then rest in His loving, caring, and merciful presence.
Please share any insights you received in today’s reading. As always, be blessed as you spend time in the Word of God.
TOMORROW’S READING…Job 12:1-14:22.

January 20, 2021 ~ JOURNEY THROUGH THE BIBLE CHRONOLOGICALLY

JANUARY 20 READINGS…Job 5:1-7:21
In today’s readings we see Job’s “friend”, Eliphaz continues to pontificate his personal view of who God is, and how God works. If Job will just get right with God…God will get right with Job. Job is getting what he deserves, because there is some unconfessed sin in his life, and God is paying him back for that sin. This is Eliphaz’s words of “hope” and “comfort” to Job. Eliphaz reminds me of the self-righteous Pharisees of Jesus’ time, and the self-righteous “Pharisees” of our day. “Do the right thing, and God will do the right thing for you.” “There must be some sin in your life…or you would not be going through such trouble”. These empty platitudes offered by so many Christians are like offering a thirsty man a drink of water that is filled with poison. These words do not refresh the spirit, rather they kill the spirit. Eliphaz had all the right clichés…but he did not have a genuine understanding of God’s truth.
Job, as you can imagine is filled with grief…even to the point of wanting to die. Can a child of God really get in the state of mind and being? Yes, of course we can. We are not immune to grief, extreme sorrow, and even depression. Sometimes life comes crashing down on us and we feel like we have no where to turn. We feel abandoned, even by God. This is how Job was feeling, and who can blame him, considering what he has been through. Theologically we know that we are never abandoned by God…but life, at times, can sure make us feel that way. When we are ministering to friends, family, or fellow Christians who are walking through such times, we need to be careful not to fall into the trap of offering empty words. Sometimes words can get in the way of meeting someone’s need in the time of their great grief. Like Job, many Christians know what the truth of God’s love, care, and presence are…they just are overwhelmed with their situation. They don’t need reminded from a self-righteous brother or sister…they need to be loved and cared for.
What in today’s readings touched your heart? Is there a truth or perspective that you gleaned from today’s readings? Please share your insight.
TOMORROW’S READINGS…Job 8:1-11:20.

January 19, 2021 ~ JOURNEY THROUGH THE BIBLE CHRONOLOGICALLY

JANUARY 19 READINGS…Job 1:1-4:21.
The book of Job can be a hard book to read…it is hard to understand at some points…but stay with it, the concluding chapters are worth it.
As I read today’s opening chapters of Job it struck me how it was the Lord who pointed out Job to Satan. Satan is our accuser, he hates us, we are told in Revelation 12:10 that he accuses us before God day and night. So it is clear that though Satan is a fallen angel…he still has access to heaven. Not sure why the Lord allows this, but it clearly is part of His plan. When I saw God pointing out Job to Satan, the thought ran through my head was…can God trust my faith in Him enough to point me out to the enemy? What does our faith and our walk look like to God? We worry how it looks to other people, but how does it look to God…shouldn’t that be our main concern? God knows us…He knows we are made of clay…He knows our failings and shortcomings. Yet He is still able to look at us and evaluate our lives and even commend them to the heavenly hosts, and to Satan himself. More than anything I want to live a life that is commendable to God…I fear that far too often I do not. What does God see when He looks at your faith and walk?
The second thing that stuck out to me was the first response of Job’s friend Eliphaz. Eliphaz seems to have the ideology that only those deserving are punished by God. He tried to tell Job that it is clear that he must have sinned or all this calamity would not have come on Job. Eliphaz’s experience was that the righteous are always blessed, and it is only the sinner that has to suffer, and suffer rightly for their sin. Eliphaz was a clear believe in “karma”. I hear even Christians promoting the philosophy of karma…”they got what they deserve.” Jesus made it clear that hard times and loss happens to all people…and it is not based on the “forces” of karma. Jesus said in Matthew 5:45, “…it rains on the just and the unjust”. It is hardly comforting or helpful to tell someone going through hard times that they are merely getting what they deserve. We know in reading Job that his torment was not because of his unrighteousness, but in fact it was the opposite, it was because God had declared him righteous that Satan attacked him. Be careful giving advice merely from your own experience or perception…it may be advice based in ignorance.
Please share your thoughts on today’s reading. Stay the course daily in your reading…I guarantee you will be blessed as you spend time in the Word of God.
TOMORROW’S READINGS…Job 5:1-7:21.

January 18, 2021 ~ JOURNEY THROUGH THE BIBLE CHRONOLOGICALLY

JANUARY 18 READINGS…Genesis 47:28-50:26
Today we finish the book of Genesis. Just think about it…you did it! For many this is the first time they have read through an entire book of the Bible. This is just the beginning of this glorious journey. I look forward to continuing this journey with you.
There are two things I want to share in today’s devotional. First, as Jacob approaches his death you read that he gathered his sons for a final word over them. Some call this a final blessing, though I am not so sure everything that Jacob said over his sons would fall into the category of a blessing. The two that really stuck out to me were Joseph and Judah. The good words that Jacob spoke over Joseph come as no surprise, but what he spoke over Judah clearly was led by the Holy Spirit, and was prophetic. Judah receives the longest and the most positive blessing. It is said that he would be the father of kings, and more specifically the father of the One who would come as the ever living King…the One who would be honored by all nations. This is a prophecy that Messiah would come out of the tribe of Judah. Once again we see the promise of Genesis 3:15 being fulfilled through Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and finally through Judah. As we continue to read through the Bible, remember that this wonderful book is about Jesus the Messiah.
The second thing that stuck out to me was what happened after Jacob’s death and Joseph’s response. Joseph’s brothers were worried that he would seek revenge on them for what they had done to him. Joseph’s response is what is important here. “What you intended to harm me, God intended to use for good”. This truth should give us great confidence, even in the face of attacks and mistreatment from our enemies. Listen, ultimately our enemies do not have the final say over us…we are in God’s hands, and there is no safer place. We can cower in the corner because our enemies attack and intend to do us harm, but the reality is they cannot touch us unless God allows it…and if God allows it then He will fulfill His great purpose through us in it. With God there truly is, “no weapon formed against us that will prosper”. What a wonderful truth…our God is greater than our enemies, and He will always accomplish His purpose in and through us!
With the completion of reading Genesis our chronological readings will take us into the book of Job. Most scholars believe that Job lived somewhere in the times of the patriarch’s. So now in Job we will journey through a time of discovering much about the sovereignty of God. Please share any insights you have from today’s readings, or any part of Genesis. Bless you all as you read through the Word of God.
TOMORROW’S READINGS… Job 1:1-4:21.

January 15, 2021 ~ JOURNEY THROUGH THE BIBLE CHRONOLOGICALLY

JANUARY 15 READINGS…Genesis 40:1-23, Genesis 35:28-29, Genesis 41:1-57,
In today’s readings the Lord gives other’s dreams, and He gives Joseph the ability to properly and correctly interpret the dreams. This is all part of God’s plan to fulfill what He told Abraham about his descendants being in Egypt, in captivity, for four hundred years. The way the Lord brings this about is to bring Joseph to power…first by interpreting the dreams of his fellow prisoners, and then by interpreting Pharaoh’s dream. Joseph goes from a slave…to a prisoner…to the second highest position in all Egypt, only God can do something like that! Remember Joseph had to go through a lot to get him to where God could use him to change the world. You may be going through a lot…remember God is still at work in you, and He intends to change the world through you.
Everyone see different things in the readings. The one thing that stuck out to me was that not only did God raise Joseph up, but He used Joseph to raise Pharaoh up in worldwide power and great wealth. The famine made Pharaoh richer and more powerful than all others…this happened because God chose to reveal His plan to Pharaoh and use Joseph to do it. Another aspect of this is the movement to centralized power. Those who were formerly farmers were now brought into the cities, for they had to sell their land to buy food from Pharaoh…this centralization gave Pharaoh great power over the people…for it made them totally dependent on him. You can see this centralization in our own country, and how people have become totally dependent for everything. We have people who were brought up on farms, who grew up pretty much independent from the need for anything from the government…that has changed. Like Joseph, no matter where we reside physically, or the situation we find ourselves in…we need to trust in the Lord.
Please share what you gleaned out of today’s readings. I love to read your insights. May the Lord continue to bless each of you as you read His Word.
TOMORROW’S READINGS…Genesis 42:1-45:15.

January 14, 2021 ~ JOURNEY THROUGH THE BIBLE CHRONOLOGICALLY

JANUARY 14 READINGS…Genesis 37:1-38:30, 1 Chronicles 2:3-8, Genesis 39:1-23.
Today we are introduced to Joseph. Clearly he is just a little spoiled by his father…and Jacob did not hide the fact that he loved Joseph more than his brothers. This kind of favoritism caused a lot of problem in the relationship that the brothers had with Joseph. Early in his life the Lord began to give Joseph dreams…in his youth it could certainly be said that Joseph did not display much wisdom or discernment in how he shared his dreams. The sharing of these dreams only served to further inflame his brothers ill feelings toward Joseph…even to the place of them wanting to murder him. Instead of murder… chose to sell him into slavery, and tell their father that he had been killed by a wild animal.
We also see the story of Judah. This is always been curious to me as this would be the line from which the Messiah would come. So many things happened in this story that are clearly contrary to God and His righteousness. Judah’s two older sons sinning against God in so great a way, that God kills them. Then Judah fathering two others sons with his daughter in law, who he thought was a prostitute. Once again we see the honesty of the Scripture in revealing the shortcomings, and outright sins of those who God chooses to use. We must remember that God still uses fallen people…it is God who is perfect…it is God who sanctifies us for His use…it is God we present, and not ourselves.
Joseph finds himself in Potiphar’s house with the lady of the house lusting after him. Joseph remains faithful to God and to his human master, and still he is falsely accused and falsely imprisoned. I hope you noticed that wherever the Lord took Joseph, the Lord blessed him. From being sold to Potiphar to going to prison, the Lord blessed Joseph and raised him up to a place of favor in the eyes of those over him, and to a place of prominence wherever he was. Though Joseph was treated unjustly over and over again by the humans in his life…God never forgot him, and God never took His hand of blessing off of Joseph. The world may treat you cruelly and unfairly…remember you belong to God and His hand of favor is always upon you.
Please share from your readings any impressions you received. It encourages others to read your responses. It is so wonderful for us to be able to make this journey through the Word of God together.
TOMORROW’S READINGS…Genesis 40:1-23, Genesis 35:28-29, Genesis 41:1-57.