Evening, February 18
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Bible League: Living His Word
My brothers and sisters, you will have many kinds of trouble. But this gives you a reason to be very happy. You know that when your faith is tested, you learn to be patient in suffering. If you let that patience work in you, the end result will be good. You will be mature and complete. You will be all that God wants you to be.

Trials, troubles, and tribulations come our way and will come our way. We say, "That's just part of life," and then we often add, "But that doesn't mean I have to like it." This typical attitude is just part of our cultural heritage; it's something that we pick up without even thinking about it or questioning it.

At the same time we complain about our circumstances in life, however, we are leery of fully trusting someone who has never been tested in life, or never had any real trouble they had to overcome. We don't know what to expect from such a person. We don't know if they will buckle under the strain of adverse circumstances or not.

So we have a conflict in our attitudes. We don't like problems, but we don't trust people who have never had problems. James' counsel on these matters is more consistent. We should be happy in adverse circumstances, because of the positive effects they can have on us as persons. Christians whose faith is tested in times of trouble can learn how to handle them; they can learn how to be patient in suffering.

We don't like it when someone loses it under the pain of adversity; we don't like it when a person of faith goes wobbly in faith when the chips are down. What's the solution? It's to let patience do its work. God, obviously, is more interested in what we become as persons than having us sail through life trouble free. God wants mature and complete people who can be patient during the tough times. In the sinful and broken world of which we are a part, trouble is something He can use to develop patience.

When you face the troubles you will inevitably face in life, remember James' counsel. Remember that in the midst of the pain and suffering something good can happen, if you let patience do its work.

Bible in a Year
Old Testament Reading
Leviticus 26, 27

Leviticus 26 -- Rewards and Punishments concerning Obedience


Leviticus 27 -- Rules concerning Valuations


New Testament Reading
Mark 2

Mark 2 -- Jesus Heals a Paralytic, Calls Matthew; Fasting; Lord of the Sabbath


Reading Plan Courtesy of Christian Classics Etherial Library.
Tyndale Life Application Daily Devotion
The LORD is a friend to those who fear him.
        He teaches them his covenant.
“The LORD is a friend to those who fear him.” God offers intimate and lasting friendship to those who revere him, who hold him in highest honor.
What relationship could ever compare with having the Lord of all creation for a friend? Your everlasting friendship with God will grow as you revere him.
Morning and Evening by Spurgeon
Luke 15:18  Father, I have sinned.

It is quite certain that those whom Christ has washed in his precious blood need not make a confession of sin, as culprits or criminals, before God the Judge, for Christ has forever taken away all their sins in a legal sense, so that they no longer stand where they can be condemned, but are once for all accepted in the Beloved; but having become children, and offending as children, ought they not every day to go before their heavenly Father and confess their sin, and acknowledge their iniquity in that character? Nature teaches that it is the duty of erring children to make a confession to their earthly father, and the grace of God in the heart teaches us that we, as Christians, owe the same duty to our heavenly Father. We daily offend, and ought not to rest without daily pardon. For, supposing that my trespasses against my Father are not at once taken to him to be washed away by the cleansing power of the Lord Jesus, what will be the consequence? If I have not sought forgiveness and been washed from these offences against my Father, I shall feel at a distance from him; I shall doubt his love to me; I shall tremble at him; I shall be afraid to pray to him: I shall grow like the prodigal, who, although still a child, was yet far off from his father. But if, with a child's sorrow at offending so gracious and loving a Parent, I go to him and tell him all, and rest not till I realize that I am forgiven, then I shall feel a holy love to my Father, and shall go through my Christian career, not only as saved, but as one enjoying present peace in God through Jesus Christ my Lord. There is a wide distinction between confessing sin as a culprit, and confessing sin as a child. The Father's bosom is the place for penitent confessions. We have been cleansed once for all, but our feet still need to be washed from the defilement of our daily walk as children of God.

Daily Light on the Daily Path
Genesis 5:3  When Adam had lived one hundred and thirty years, he became the father of a son in his own likeness, according to his image, and named him Seth.

Job 14:4  "Who can make the clean out of the unclean? No one!

Psalm 51:5  Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, And in sin my mother conceived me.

Ephesians 2:1,3  And you were dead in your trespasses and sins, • Among them we too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest.

Romans 7:14,15,18  For we know that the Law is spiritual, but I am of flesh, sold into bondage to sin. • For what I am doing, I do not understand; for I am not practicing what I would like to do, but I am doing the very thing I hate. • For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh; for the willing is present in me, but the doing of the good is not.

Romans 5:12,19  Therefore, just as through one man sin entered into the world, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men, because all sinned-- • For as through the one man's disobedience the many were made sinners, even so through the obedience of the One the many will be made righteous.

Romans 5:15  But the free gift is not like the transgression. For if by the transgression of the one the many died, much more did the grace of God and the gift by the grace of the one Man, Jesus Christ, abound to the many.

Romans 8:2  For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death.

1 Corinthians 15:57  but thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

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.

Morning February 18
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