Welcome to the New Daily Devotion - Our Daily Bread
Our Daily Bread -- I’ve Come to Help August 10, 2015
Read: James 1:19-27 Bible in a Year: Psalms 79-80; Romans 11:1-18
Be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. —James 1:22
Reporter Jacob Riis’s vivid descriptions of poverty in 19th-century New York City horrified a generally complacent public. His book How the Other Half Lives combined his writing with his own photographs to paint a picture so vivid that the public could not escape the certainty of poverty’s desperate existence. The third of fifteen children himself, Riis wrote so effectively because he had lived in that world of terrible despair. Shortly after the release of his book, he received a card from a young man just beginning his political career. The note read simply, “I have read your book, and I have come to help. Theodore Roosevelt.” (This politician later became a US President.) True faith responds to the needs of others, according to James (1:19-27). May our hearts be moved from inaction to action, from words alone to deeds that back them up. Compassionate action not only aids those mired in life’s difficulties, but it may also make them open to the greater message from our Saviour who sees their need and can do so much more for them. —Randy Kilgore O Lord, it is so easy to be overwhelmed, or to judge and therefore to refrain from helping others. Lift our eyes above our own thoughts and circumstances, and let us care as You care. Others will know what the words “God is love” mean when they see it in our lives.
INSIGHT: James’s letter was written to people enduring difficult times. In James 1:1 we read, “James, a bondservant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad: Greetings.” The “twelve tribes which are scattered abroad” were Jewish followers of Christ who had been driven from their homes in Jerusalem by persecution. Many of them had lost everything because of their faith in Christ, and they were struggling. Perhaps that is why James spoke so passionately about caring for orphans and widows (1:27) and the poor (ch.2). Because the believers had suffered so much themselves, they should have understood the importance of responding to the needs of others. Bill Crowder
Yah........I don't really think this is the place to kumbaja. I believe if we suffer of poverty we shouldn't be here in the first place. Some say if you are devoted, you will be always be persecuted and suffer..also financially. Others say if you are devoted you will succeed in most aspects.. I believe we carve our own paths here and it makes us a success/failure. We are quick to put the blame on something/someone else when things don't go our way..
Our Daily Bread -- Debits and Credits August 11, 2015
Read: John 16:1-11 Bible in a Year: Psalms 81-83; Romans 11:19-36
In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world. —John 16:33 When my husband was teaching an accounting class at a local college, I took one of the tests just for fun to see how well I could do. The results were not good. I answered every question wrong. The reason for my failure was that I started with a faulty understanding of a basic banking concept. I reversed debits and credits. We sometimes get our debits and credits confused in the spiritual realm as well. When we blame Satan for everything that goes wrong—whether it’s bad weather, a jammed printer, or financial trouble—we’re actually giving him credit that he doesn’t deserve. We are ascribing to him the power to determine the quality of our lives, which he does not have. Satan is limited in time and space. He has to ask God’s permission before he can touch us (Job 1:12; Luke 22:31). However, as the father of lies and prince of this world (John 8:44; 16:11), Satan can cause confusion. Jesus warned of a time when people would be so confused that they wouldn't know right from wrong (16:2). But He added this assurance: “The prince of this world now stands condemned” (v. 11 niv). Problems will disrupt our lives, but they cannot defeat us. Jesus has already overcome the world. To Him goes all the credit. —Julie Ackerman Link Thank You, Father, for being Lord over everything in our lives. We praise You for overcoming the world through Your Son. While Satan accuses and confuses, God controls. INSIGHT: Today’s passage is part of the Upper Room Discourse (John 13-17)—the conversation Jesus had with His disciples the last time He was with them before His death. At several points Jesus tells His disciples that they will be misunderstood and hated by “the world.” He also tells them that although He is leaving them, it is for their benefit because when He leaves He will send the Holy Spirit (v. 7). We are not alone or abandoned in this world. Jesus has given us the gift of His Spirit to be our helper. J.R. Hudberg
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Our Daily Bread -- A Portrait of Jesus August 12, 2015
Read: Isaiah 53:4-12 Bible in a Year: Psalms 84-86; Romans 12
We have turned, every one, to his own way; and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all. —Isaiah 53:6 In Portraits of Famous American Women, Robert Henkes writes, “A portrait is not a photograph, nor is it a mirror image.” A portrait goes beyond the outer appearance to probe the emotional depth of the human soul. In a portrait, a true artist tries “to capture what the person is really about.” Over the centuries, many portraits have been painted of Jesus. Perhaps you’ve seen them in a church or museum of art or even have one in your home. Not one of these is a true portrait, of course, because we have no photograph or mirror image of our Lord’s physical appearance. We do, however, have a magnificent word portrait of Him in Isaiah 53. This God-inspired description captures in vivid detail what He is all about: “Surely he took up our pain and bore our suffering . . . . But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; . . . and by his wounds we are healed” (vv. 4-5 niv). This passage enables us to see love and sorrow, anguish and pain on Jesus’ face. But His lips do not accuse or condemn. He has no sins of His own to grieve; only ours to bear. And deep inside, He knows that “He shall see the labour of His soul, and be satisfied” (v. 11). What a portrait of our Saviour! —David C. McCasland What amazing love You have for us, Jesus! As I think of how awesome You are, I bow in silence before You. Love was when God became a man. INSIGHT: Isaiah 53 is the last of four prophecies of Isaiah (42:1-9; 49:1-13; 50:4-11; 52:13-53:12) known as the “Servant Songs” because they speak of the “Servant” (42:1; 49:3; 50:10; 52:13). These Songs prophetically identify Jesus the Messiah as the Servant. Sim Kay Tee Share your thoughts on today’s devotional on Facebook or https://odb.org/