Morning, November 10
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Bible League: Living His Word
"So you, by the help of your God, return,
    hold fast to love and justice,
    and wait continually for your God."

There was a time when you were close to the Lord. Just like Jacob at the Jabbok River, you strove with God and you prevailed. You met with Him and He spoke to you. You even wept before Him and sought His favor (Hosea 12:3-5). God did not seem distant or far away. Rather, He seemed close by and ready to help. He was so real to you that you couldn't imagine offending Him by disobeying His commandments. And you were ready for His instruction and you waited for His counsel.

Things, however, changed. Reality happened. The trials and troubles of life did more to alienate you from God than draw you close to Him. The striving and wrestling with God ended. You were too busy to stop and listen to Him. There were no more tears before Him. God receded to the background of your conscious life and you started to go wobbly on some of His commandments. Waiting for the instruction and counsel of God wasn't the first thing on your mind either.

If all this describes you, and at times it describes every Christian to one degree or another, then the message of Hosea for you today is that it's time to return. It's time to return to the way it was. You'll need the help of the Lord to do it, but it's time to do it. Return now, "before the silver cord is snapped, or the golden bowl is broken, or the pitcher is shattered at the fountain, or the wheel broken at the cistern, and the dust returns to the earth as it was" (Ecclesiastes 12:6). Return, that is, before there is no time left to return.

If you decide to return, then things will need to change. You shouldn't play fast and loose with the commandments of the Lord anymore. Once again you should love the Lord with all your heart and you should love your neighbor as yourself. Hosea specifically says to "hold fast to love and justice." That is, treat your neighbor like you would want to be treated. If you return, he also says to "wait continually for your God." Don't just follow the dictates of your sinful self. Instead, wait for the instruction and counsel of the Lord.

Return!

Bible in a Year
Old Testament Reading
Lamentations 1, 2


Lamentations 1 -- How lonely lies Zion, that was once full of people!

  NIV   NLT   ESV   NAS   GWT   KJV   ASV   ERV   DRB


Lamentations 2 -- How the Lord has covered the daughter of Zion with the cloud of his anger!

  NIV   NLT   ESV   NAS   GWT   KJV   ASV   ERV   DRB


New Testament Reading
Hebrews 7


Hebrews 7 -- Jesus' Priesthood Like Melchizedek's

  NIV   NLT   ESV   NAS   GWT   KJV   ASV   ERV   DRB


Reading Plan Courtesy of Christian Classics Etherial Library.
Tyndale Life Application Daily Devotion
Let the message about Christ, in all its richness, fill your lives. Teach and counsel each other with all the wisdom he gives. Sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs to God with thankful hearts.
Insight
Thankful people can worship wholeheartedly. Gratitude opens our hearts to God's peace and enables us to put on love. Discontented people constantly calculate what's wrong with their lot in life.
Challenge
To increase your thankfulness, take an inventory of all you have (including your relationships, memories, abilities, and family, as well as material possessions). Use the inventory for prayers of gratitude. On Sunday, before worship, quit rushing around; instead, take time to reflect on reasons for thanks. Declare Sunday as your “thanks, faith, and hope” day. Celebrate God's goodness to you, and ask in prayer for all your needs for the week ahead.
Morning and Evening by Spurgeon
Deuteronomy 33:27  The eternal God is thy refuge.

The word refuge may be translated "mansion," or "abiding-place," which gives the thought that God is our abode, our home. There is a fulness and sweetness in the metaphor, for dear to our hearts is our home, although it be the humblest cottage, or the scantiest garret; and dearer far is our blessed God, in whom we live, and move, and have our being. It is at home that we feel safe: we shut the world out and dwell in quiet security. So when we are with our God we "fear no evil." He is our shelter and retreat, our abiding refuge. At home, we take our rest; it is there we find repose after the fatigue and toil of the day. And so our hearts find rest in God, when, wearied with life's conflict, we turn to him, and our soul dwells at ease. At home, also, we let our hearts loose; we are not afraid of being misunderstood, nor of our words being misconstrued. So when we are with God we can commune freely with him, laying open all our hidden desires; for if the "secret of the Lord is with them that fear him," the secrets of them that fear him ought to be, and must be, with their Lord. Home, too, is the place of our truest and purest happiness: and it is in God that our hearts find their deepest delight. We have joy in him which far surpasses all other joy. It is also for home that we work and labor. The thought of it gives strength to bear the daily burden, and quickens the fingers to perform the task; and in this sense we may also say that God is our home. Love to him strengthens us. We think of him in the person of his dear Son; and a glimpse of the suffering face of the Redeemer constrains us to labor in his cause. We feel that we must work, for we have brethren yet to be saved, and we have our Father's heart to make glad by bringing home his wandering sons; we would fill with holy mirth the sacred family among whom we dwell. Happy are those who have thus the God of Jacob for their refuge!

Daily Light on the Daily Path
Colossians 1:10  so that you will walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, to please Him in all respects, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God;

Romans 12:1,2  Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship. • And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.

Romans 6:19  I am speaking in human terms because of the weakness of your flesh. For just as you presented your members as slaves to impurity and to lawlessness, resulting in further lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves to righteousness, resulting in sanctification.

Galatians 6:15,16  For neither is circumcision anything, nor uncircumcision, but a new creation. • And those who will walk by this rule, peace and mercy be upon them, and upon the Israel of God.

John 15:8  "My Father is glorified by this, that you bear much fruit, and so prove to be My disciples.

John 15:16  "You did not choose Me but I chose you, and appointed you that you would go and bear fruit, and that your fruit would remain, so that whatever you ask of the Father in My name He may give to you.

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 //www.lockman.org.

Evening November 9
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