Morning, July 18
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Bible League: Living His Word
Return, O LORD!
How long?
And have compassion on Your servants.

There are times when the Lord seems far away. Although He is omnipresent and is, as a result, never far from us, it can seem that way sometimes. Sometimes our sin may introduce some distance into our relationship with the Lord. We turn away from Him and He turns from us. Sometimes, on the other hand, we simply get caught up in the troubles of life in this dispensation and God seems far away.

Either way, when we finally realize the folly of our sin, or when we finally realize our need for God, we cry out to God like Moses did: "Return, O LORD!" We do this because we know that the Lord responds when we call to Him. We know what He said through Malachi, "Return to me, and I will return to you" (Malachi 3:7), and we know what James said, "Draw near to God and He will draw near to you" (James 4:8).We know that our God is a God who pities the cries of His people and turns and saves them.

But there may be some waiting involved. We have returned to God, we have drawn near to Him, but then we must wait for Him to come through. How long Lord? How long will we have to wait for your salvation? If our sin is the cause of the problem, perhaps the Lord waits a while because immediately responding would do us no favors. After all, if the Lord immediately delivered us every time we got into trouble because of our sin, then we might not fully appreciate the gravity of our wrong-doing. If, on the other hand, the troubles of life are the cause of the problem, perhaps the Lord waits in order to show us that He and He alone is our deliverer. After all, if the Lord immediately delivered us from our troubles every time, we might not fully appreciate Him for what He does.

When God finally does come through and saves us, He does so because of the compassion He has for His servants. He returns to us and delivers us because He cares for us. We call out to God because we know it is His nature to respond.

There is a God of compassion who will respond to your call today. Cry out to Him like Moses in Psalm 90, for He is a strong deliverer.

Bible in a Year
Old Testament Reading
Psalm 25, 26, 27


Psalm 25 -- To you, O Lord, do I lift up my soul.

  NIV   NLT   ESV   NAS   GWT   KJV   ASV   ERV   DRB


Psalm 26 -- Judge me, O Lord, for I have walked in my integrity.

  NIV   NLT   ESV   NAS   GWT   KJV   ASV   ERV   DRB


Psalm 27 -- The Lord is my light and my salvation. Whom shall I fear?

  NIV   NLT   ESV   NAS   GWT   KJV   ASV   ERV   DRB


New Testament Reading
Acts 20:17-38


Acts 20 -- Paul in Macedonia and Greece; Eutychus Raised; Paul's Farewell to Ephesian Elders

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Reading Plan Courtesy of Christian Classics Etherial Library.
Tyndale Life Application Daily Devotion
Give us each day the food we need.
Insight
God's provision is daily, not all at once. We cannot store it up and then cut off communication with God. And we dare not be self-satisfied.
Challenge
If you are running low on strength, ask yourself, “How long have I been away from the Source?”
Morning and Evening by Spurgeon
Numbers 2:31  They shall go hindmost with their standards.

The camp of Dan brought up the rear when the armies of Israel were on the march. The Danites occupied the hindmost place, but what mattered the position, since they were as truly part of the host as were the foremost tribes; they followed the same fiery cloudy pillar, they ate of the same manna, drank of the same spiritual rock, and journeyed to the same inheritance. Come, my heart, cheer up, though last and least; it is thy privilege to be in the army, and to fare as they fare who lead the van. Some one must be hindmost in honor and esteem, some one must do menial work for Jesus, and why should not I? In a poor village, among an ignorant peasantry; or in a back street, among degraded sinners, I will work on, and "go hindmost with my standard."

The Danites occupied a very useful place. Stragglers have to be picked up upon the march, and lost property has to be gathered from the field. Fiery spirits may dash forward over untrodden paths to learn fresh truth, and win more souls to Jesus; but some of a more conservative spirit may be well engaged in reminding the church of her ancient faith, and restoring her fainting sons. Every position has its duties, and the slowly moving children of God will find their peculiar state one in which they may be eminently a blessing to the whole host.

The rear guard is a place of danger. There are foes behind us as well as before us. Attacks may come from any quarter. We read that Amalek fell upon Israel, and slew some of the hindmost of them. The experienced Christian will find much work for his weapons in aiding those poor doubting, desponding, wavering, souls, who are hindmost in faith, knowledge, and joy. These must not be left unaided, and therefore be it the business of well-taught saints to bear their standards among the hindmost. My soul, do thou tenderly watch to help the hindmost this day.

Daily Light on the Daily Path
John 10:3  "To him the doorkeeper opens, and the sheep hear his voice, and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out.

2 Timothy 2:19  Nevertheless, the firm foundation of God stands, having this seal, "The Lord knows those who are His," and, "Everyone who names the name of the Lord is to abstain from wickedness."

Matthew 7:22,23  "Many will say to Me on that day, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?' • "And then I will declare to them, 'I never knew you; DEPART FROM ME, YOU WHO PRACTICE LAWLESSNESS.'

Psalm 1:6  For the LORD knows the way of the righteous, But the way of the wicked will perish.

Isaiah 49:16  "Behold, I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands; Your walls are continually before Me.

Songs 8:6  "Put me like a seal over your heart, Like a seal on your arm. For love is as strong as death, Jealousy is as severe as Sheol; Its flashes are flashes of fire, The very flame of the LORD.

Nahum 1:7  The LORD is good, A stronghold in the day of trouble, And He knows those who take refuge in Him.

John 14:2,3  "In My Father's house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you. • "If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also.

New American Standard Bible Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, La Habra, Calif. All rights reserved. For Permission to Quote Information visit http://www.lockman.org.

Evening July 17
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