Thursday, December 14, 2017

Matthew 1:20-25 (NLT)...

FROM TODAY'S READING (12/14/2017)...


MERRY CHRISTMAS


"If we could condense all the truths of Christmas into only three words, these would be the words: "God with us." We tend to focus our attention at Christmas on the infancy of Christ. The greater truth of the holiday is His deity. More astonishing than a baby in the manger is the truth that this promised baby is the omnipotent Creator of the heavens and the earth!"

John MacArthur


Matthew 1:20-25 (NLT) As he considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream. “Joseph, son of David,” the angel said, “do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife. For the child within her was conceived by the Holy Spirit. And she will have a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” All of this occurred to fulfill the Lord’s message through his prophet: “Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel, which means ‘God is with us.’” 

When Joseph woke up, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded and took Mary as his wife. But he did not have sexual relations with her until her son was born. And Joseph named him Jesus.


Isaiah 7:14 NLT All right then, the Lord himself will give you the sign. Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son and will call him Immanuel (which means ‘God is with us’).




Image: Creative Commons (Flickr/Adobe of Chaos)

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Matthew 1:20-21 (NLT)...

FROM TODAY'S READING (12/13/2017)...


MERRY CHRISTMAS


"His poverty was so great that He was born in another man's house, and buried in another man's tomb."


Matthew 1:20-21 (NLT) As he considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream. “Joseph, son of David,” the angel said, “do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife. For the child within her was conceived by the Holy Spirit. And she will have a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.”


Hebrews 10:5-7 (NKJV) Therefore, when He came into the world, He said: “Sacrifice and offering You did not desire, But a body You have prepared for Me. In burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin You had no pleasure. Then I said, ‘Behold, I have come— In the volume of the book it is written of Me— To do Your will, O God.’ ”




Image: Creative Commons (Google/unknown origin)

Monday, December 11, 2017

Psalm 139:13-18 (NLT)...

FROM TODAY'S READING (12/11/2017)...


MERRY CHRISTMAS


"When we were children we were grateful to those who filled our stockings at Christmas time. Why are we not grateful to God for filling our stockings with legs?"

G. K. Chesterton 


Psalms 139:13-14, 17-18 (NLT) You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb. Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it.

How precious are your thoughts about me, O God. They cannot be numbered! I can’t even count them; they outnumber the grains of sand! And when I wake up, you are still with me!




Image: Creative Commons (freedesignfile.com)

Friday, December 8, 2017

John 3:16-17 (NLT)...

FROM TODAY'S READING (12/8/2017)...


MERRY CHRISTMAS


"Let us remember that the Christmas heart is a giving heart, a wide open heart that thinks of others first. The birth of the baby Jesus stands as the most significant event in all history, because it has meant the pouring into a sick world of the healing medicine of love which has transformed all manner of hearts for almost two thousand years... Underneath all the bulging bundles is this beating Christmas heart."

George Matthew Adams


John 3:16-17 (NLT) For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him.




Image: Creative Commons (Wikimedia/public domain)


Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Luke 4:14-22 (NLT)..,

FROM TODAY'S READING (12/6/2017)...


MERRY CHRISTMAS


"When the song of the angels is stilled, 

When the star in the sky is gone, 

When the kings and princes are home, 

When the shepherds are back with their flock, 

The work of Christmas begins: 

...To find the lost, 

To heal the broken, 

To feed the hungry, 

To release the prisoner, 

To rebuild the nations, 

To bring peace among brothers, 

To make music in the heart."

~ Howard Thurman


 Luke 4:14-22 (NLT) Then Jesus returned to Galilee, filled with the Holy Spirit’s power. Reports about him spread quickly through the whole region. He taught regularly in their synagogues and was praised by everyone. 


When he came to the village of Nazareth, his boyhood home, he went as usual to the synagogue on the Sabbath and stood up to read the Scriptures. The scroll of Isaiah the prophet was handed to him. He unrolled the scroll and found the place where this was written: “The Spirit of the LORD is upon me, for he has anointed me to bring Good News to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim that captives will be released, that the blind will see, that the oppressed will be set free, and that the time of the LORD’s favor has come. ” 


He rolled up the scroll, handed it back to the attendant, and sat down. All eyes in the synagogue looked at him intently. 


Then he began to speak to them. “The Scripture you’ve just heard has been fulfilled this very day!” Everyone spoke well of him and was amazed by the gracious words that came from his lips. “How can this be?” they asked. “Isn’t this Joseph’s son?”




Image: Creative Commons (Flickr)

Monday, December 4, 2017

Matthew 2:7-11 (NLT)..,

FROM TODAY'S READING (12/4/2017)...


"The magic of Christmas is not in the presents but in His presence."

Bangor Christmas Parade of Lights (2017)


Matthew 2:7-11 (NLT) Then Herod called for a private meeting with the wise men, and he learned from them the time when the star first appeared. Then he told them, “Go to Bethlehem and search carefully for the child. And when you find him, come back and tell me so that I can go and worship him, too!” After this interview the wise men went their way. And the star they had seen in the east guided them to Bethlehem. It went ahead of them and stopped over the place where the child was. When they saw the star, they were filled with joy! They entered the house and saw the child with his mother, Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasure chests and gave him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.




Image: Christmas Parade(2017)

Friday, December 1, 2017

1 Corinthians 10:14 (NLT)...

FROM TODAY'S READING (12/1/2017)...


"When anything in life is an absolute requirement for your happiness and self-worth, it is essentially an 'idol,' something you are actually worshiping. When such a thing is threatened, your anger is absolute. Your anger is actually the way the idol keeps you in its service, in its chains. Therefore if you find that, despite all the efforts to forgive, your anger and bitterness cannot subside, you may need to look deeper and ask, 'What am I defending? What is so important that I cannot live without?' It may be that, until some inordinate desire is identified and confronted, you will not be able to master your anger."

Tim Keller (Pastor/theologian/apologist/author)


 1 Corinthians 10:14 (NIV) Therefore, my dear friends, flee from idolatry.


Ephesians 4:21-27 (NLT) Since you have heard about Jesus and have learned the truth that comes from him, throw off your old sinful nature and your former way of life, which is corrupted by lust and deception. Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy. So stop telling lies. Let us tell our neighbors the truth, for we are all parts of the same body. And “don’t sin by letting anger control you.” Don’t let the sun go down while you are still angry, for anger gives a foothold to the devil.




Image: Creative Commons (unknown origin)