Evening, January 15
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Bible League: Living His Word
But you must remember, beloved, the predictions of the apostles of our LORD Jesus Christ. They said to you, "In the last time there will be scoffers, following their own ungodly passions." It is these who cause divisions, worldly people, devoid of the Spirit.

When it comes to the Christian faith, there have always been scoffers. A scoffer is someone who casts doubt on what you believe, speaks derisively about it, scorns it and jeers at it. At the worst, a scoffer will mock what you believe. Since they themselves do not believe it, they think anyone who does is a fool.

Usually, but not always, scoffing is done behind the back and amongst similar-minded people. Most scoffers seem to have the awareness that what they are doing is something less than flattering to them. In this era of advanced security technologies, YouTube and social media, however, scoffing has come more into the light. The true attitudes of politicians, celebrities, professors and teachers, business people, and the like are not as easily hidden as they used to be. In these "last times," as a result, Christians more and more are experiencing firsthand some of the attitudes people have towards the faith.

Jude tells us that those who scoff at the Christian faith are "worldly people" who follow "ungodly passions" and are "devoid of the Spirit." They are focused on the things of this world. Lacking the Spirit, the fact that there is something more than the world around us is lost on them.

Scoffers can, as Jude tells us, cause divisions. By introducing doubt and unbelief, they can shake up the unity of faith amongst believers. As he goes on to say in his letter, however, there are ways to handle this. Believers should build themselves up in the faith, pray in the Spirit, and keep themselves in God's love (Jude 1:20-21).

Believers should, so Jude seems to be saying, keep doing all the things necessary to maintain our relationship to God. If we do this, then the scoffing of the scoffers will have little impact on us.

Bible in a Year
Old Testament Reading
Genesis 36, 37


Genesis 36 -- Descendants of Esau; Kings of Edom

  NIV   NLT   ESV   NAS   GWT   KJV   ASV   ERV   DRB


Genesis 37 -- Joseph's Dreams and Betrayal by His Brothers

  NIV   NLT   ESV   NAS   GWT   KJV   ASV   ERV   DRB


New Testament Reading
Matthew 12:1-21


Matthew 12 -- The Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath; By Their Fruit; Sign of Jonah; Who are my Mother and Brothers?

  NIV   NLT   ESV   NAS   GWT   KJV   ASV   ERV   DRB


Reading Plan Courtesy of Christian Classics Etherial Library.
Tyndale Life Application Daily Devotion
And now, Israel, what does the LORD your God require of you? He requires only that you fear the LORD your God, and live in a way that pleases him, and love him and serve him with all your heart and soul. And you must always obey the LORD's commands and decrees that I am giving you today for your own good.
Insight
Often we ask, “What does God expect from me?” Here Moses gives a summary that is simple in form and easy to remember. Here are the essentials: (1) Fear God; (2) Live in a way that pleases him; (3) Love him; (4) Serve him with all your heart and soul; and (5) Obey his commands. Too often we complicate faith with man-made rules, regulations, and requirements.
Challenge
Are you frustrated and burned out from trying hard to please God? Concentrate on his real requirements and find peace. Respect, follow, love, serve, and obey.
Morning and Evening by Spurgeon
Psalm 109:4  But I give myself unto prayer.

Lying tongues were busy against the reputation of David, but he did not defend himself; he moved the case into a higher court, and pleaded before the great King himself. Prayer is the safest method of replying to words of hatred. The Psalmist prayed in no cold-hearted manner, he gave himself to the exercise--threw his whole soul and heart into it--straining every sinew and muscle, as Jacob did when wrestling with the angel. Thus, and thus only, shall any of us speed at the throne of grace. As a shadow has no power because there is no substance in it, even so that supplication, in which a man's proper self is not thoroughly present in agonizing earnestness and vehement desire, is utterly ineffectual, for it lacks that which would give it force. "Fervent prayer," says an old divine, "like a cannon planted at the gates of heaven, makes them fly open." The common fault with the most of us is our readiness to yield to distractions. Our thoughts go roving hither and thither, and we make little progress towards our desired end. Like quicksilver our mind will not hold together, but rolls off this way and that. How great an evil this is! It injures us, and what is worse, it insults our God. What should we think of a petitioner, if, while having an audience with a prince, he should be playing with a feather or catching a fly?

Continuance and perseverance are intended in the expression of our text. David did not cry once, and then relapse into silence; his holy clamour was continued till it brought down the blessing. Prayer must not be our chance work, but our daily business, our habit and vocation. As artists give themselves to their models, and poets to their classical pursuits, so must we addict ourselves to prayer. We must be immersed in prayer as in our element, and so pray without ceasing. Lord, teach us so to pray that we may be more and more prevalent in supplication.

Compassion International
The generous will themselves be blessed, for they share their food with the poor. — Proverbs 22:9

Would you be surprised to learn that 1 in 8 people end their day hungry? And not the normal hungry we often experience before grabbing a quick snack ? bad, painful hunger. Hunger results in malnutrition, poor health and oftentimes a low birth rate. That’s why when we think of hunger, we often also think of poverty.

Children are most likely to suffer from hunger, which results in life-altering consequences. They find it hard to concentrate at school and are sick more often than kids who receive healthy nutrition. Fortunately, hunger is preventable.

This proverb contains the answer to the world’s hunger crisis. Those who have food are called to share their food with the poor. That sounds easy enough, right? But it’s not easy to send food from our refrigerator across the world to someone who is struggling with food poverty.

Compassion International is a great model for how people who are blessed with food can share with the poor who need it most. Children who are enrolled in the program learn about nutrition and the importance of food. The children then share the information with their families. The kindness of someone across the world can impact an entire family for generations. The kindness spreads and the blessing is evident.

Share your food generously, whether it be in your own community or around the world.

This devotional is provided by Compassion International.

Daily Light on the Daily Path
Romans 12:3  For through the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think more highly of himself than he ought to think; but to think so as to have sound judgment, as God has allotted to each a measure of faith.

Romans 14:1  Now accept the one who is weak in faith, but not for the purpose of passing judgment on his opinions.

Romans 4:20  yet, with respect to the promise of God, he did not waver in unbelief but grew strong in faith, giving glory to God,

Matthew 14:31  Immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and took hold of him, and said to him, "You of little faith, why did you doubt?"

Matthew 15:28  Then Jesus said to her, "O woman, your faith is great; it shall be done for you as you wish." And her daughter was healed at once.

Matthew 9:28,29  When He entered the house, the blind men came up to Him, and Jesus said to them, "Do you believe that I am able to do this?" They said to Him, "Yes, Lord." • Then He touched their eyes, saying, "It shall be done to you according to your faith."

Luke 17:5  The apostles said to the Lord, "Increase our faith!"

Jude 1:20  But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit,

Colossians 2:7  having been firmly rooted and now being built up in Him and established in your faith, just as you were instructed, and overflowing with gratitude.

2 Corinthians 1:21  Now He who establishes us with you in Christ and anointed us is God,

1 Peter 5:10  After you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself perfect, confirm, strengthen and establish you.

Romans 15:1  Now we who are strong ought to bear the weaknesses of those without strength and not just please ourselves.

Romans 14:13  Therefore let us not judge one another anymore, but rather determine this-- not to put an obstacle or a stumbling block in a brother's way.

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 January 15
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