September 30, 2012 Bible Reading

September 30

Reading for Today:

Isaiah 51:1–52:15

Psalm 112:5-10

Proverbs 26:16

Ephesians 2:1-22

Notes:

Isaiah 51:6- heavens will vanish…earth will grow old. This begins to take place in the time of tribulation (Rev. 6:12–14; 8:12, 13; 16:8–10, 21), setting the stage, along with the earthly judgments on land, sea, and fresh water (Rev. 6:14; 8:6–11; 16:3–5), for a renewed earth during the Millennium. The actual “uncreation” or destruction of the present universe, of which Peter wrote (2 Pet. 3:10–13), occurs at the end of Christ’s millennial reign on the earth, when a new heaven and a new earth will replace the present creation (2 Pet. 3:10; Rev. 21:1).

Isaiah 52:14- His visage was marred. The Servant must undergo inhuman cruelty to the point that He no longer looks like a human being. His appearance is so awful that people look at Him in astonishment (53:2, 3; Ps. 22:6; Matt. 26:67; 27:30; John 19:3).

Isaiah 52:15- sprinkle many nations. In His disfigured state, the Servant will perform a priestly work of cleansing not just Israel but many outside the nation (Ex. 29:21; Lev. 4:6; 8:11; 14:7; Num. 8:7; 19:18, 19; Heb. 9:13). shut their mouths. At His exaltation, human leaders in the highest places will be speechless and in awe before the once-despised Servant (Ps. 2). When He takes His throne, they will see the unfolding of power and glory such as they have never heard. Paul applied the principle in this verse to his apostolic mission of preaching the gospel of Christ where Christ was yet unknown (Rom. 15:21).

Ephesians 2:1- dead in trespasses and sins. A sobering reminder of the total sinfulness and lostness from which believers have been redeemed. “In” indicates the realm or sphere in which unregenerate sinners exist. They are not dead because of sinful acts that have been committed but because of their sinful nature (Matt. 12:35; 15:18, 19).

Ephesians 2:21- a holy temple in the Lord. Every new believer is a new stone in Christ’s temple, the church, Christ’s body of believers (1 Pet. 2:5). Christ’s building of His church will not be complete until every person who will believe in Him has done so (2 Pet. 3:9).

DAY 30: How were Gentiles brought into the family of God?

Historically, the Gentiles (the “uncircumcision”) experienced two types of alienation. The first was social, resulting from the animosity that had existed between Jews and Gentiles for thousands of years. Jews considered Gentiles to be outcasts, objects of derision and reproach. The second and more significant type of alienation was spiritual, because Gentiles as a people were cut off from God in 5 different ways (Eph. 2:11, 12): 1) they were “without Christ,” the Messiah, having no Savior and Deliverer and without divine purpose or destiny. 2) They were “aliens from the commonwealth of Israel.” God’s chosen people, the Jews, were a nation whose supreme King and Lord was God Himself, and from whose unique blessing and protection they benefitted. 3) Gentiles were “strangers from the covenants of promise,” not able to partake of God’s divine covenants in which He promised to give His people a land, a priesthood, a people, a nation, a kingdom, and a King—and to those who believe in Him, eternal life and heaven. 4) They had “no hope” because they had been given no divine promise. 5) They were “without God in the world.” While Gentiles had many gods, they did not recognize the true God because they did not want Him.

“But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ” (v.13). “Far off” was a common term in rabbinical writings used to describe Gentiles, those who were apart from the true God (Is. 57:19; Acts 2:39). Every person who trusts in Christ alone for salvation, Jew or Gentile, is brought into spiritual union and intimacy with God. This is the reconciliation of 2 Corinthians 5:18–21.The atoning work accomplished by Christ’s death on the cross washes away the penalty of sin and ultimately even its presence. “He Himself” (v. 14). Through His death, Christ abolished Old Testament ceremonial laws, feasts, and sacrifices which uniquely separated Jews from Gentiles. God’s moral law (as summarized in the Ten Commandments and written on the hearts of all men, Rom. 2:15) was not abolished but subsumed in the New Covenant, however, because it reflects His own holy nature (Matt. 5:17–19.)

http://www.gty.org/resources/devotionals/daily-bible

Principles for Spiritual Victory

Principles for Spiritual Victory

[COLOR=Red]”Finally, be strong in the Lord, and in the strength of His might” (Eph. 6:10).

This month we’ve learned many things about spiritual warfare that I pray will better equip you for victory in your Christian life. In concluding our brief study of Ephesians 6:10-18, here are some key principles I want you to remember:

1. Remember that Satan is a defeated foe. Jesus came to destroy his works (1 John 3:8) and will someday cast him into eternal hell (Rev. 20:10).

2. Remember the power of Christ in your life. John said, “Greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world” (1 John 4:4). The same power that defeated Satan indwells you. Consequently, you are never alone or without divine resources.

3. Remember to resist Satan. You have the power to resist him, so don’t acquiesce to him by being ignorant of his schemes or deliberately exposing yourself to temptation.

4. Keep your spiritual armor on at all times. It’s foolish to enter combat without proper protection.

5. Let Christ control your attitudes and actions. The spiritual battle we’re in calls for spiritual weapons (2 Cor. 10:3-4), so take “every thought captive to the obedience of Christ” (v. 5). Feed on the Word and obey its principles.

6. Pray, pray, pray! Prayer unleashes the Spirit’s power. Be a person of fervent and faithful prayer (cf. James 5:16).

God never intended for you to live in spiritual defeat. I pray you’ll take advantage of the resources He has supplied that your life might honor Him. Enjoy sweet victory every day!

Suggestions for Prayer:

Thank God for His promise of ultimate victory in Christ.

For Further Study:

Read Ephesians 6:10-18.

Review each piece of armor.

Is any piece missing from your personal defense system? If so, determine what you will do to correct the deficiency.[/COLOR]

http://www.gty.org/resources/devotionals

World leaders use the UN General Assembly to debate the dangers of the

World leaders use the UN General Assembly to debate the dangers of the Iranian nuclear program

September 28, 2012

The UN General Assembly was the scene for a debate on the threat that Iran poses to the world as Iran develops a nuclear weapon of mass destruction and continues to call for the destruction of the Jewish state of Israel.

US President Obama played down the threat and called for a continuation of diplomacy while Iranian President Ahmadinejad said Iran has a right to develop a nuclear program and they will defend that program and he also brought to the table that Israel is a cancer in Ahmadinejad’s plan for a New World Order without the Jewish state.

Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu told the world leaders there must be a red line on Iran’s nuclear program even as the PM assured the UN member states that Israel will protect its nation possibly with a preemptive strike on Iran’s nuclear program.

Jimmy’s Prophetic Prospective on the News

World leaders discussing the possible destruction of the Jewish state of Israel on the stage of an international gathering of world leaders is a precursor to the end of times scenario that is found in Bible prophecy.

At the UN General Assembly held in NY City, leaders from the nations of our world gathered to discuss the problems facing us today. At the top of the agenda was the threat from Iran’s nuclear program to Israel, the Middle East and in fact the entire world. Israeli PM Netanyahu says that the world needs to give Iran a red line on its nuclear program and if they go beyond that red line, the world must deal with the threat which might actually be a preemptive strike by the IDF on the Iranian nuclear program.

Bible prophecy does reveal to us that Iran and Israel will have a confrontation in the last days, Ezekiel 38:5. However, there is more prophetically to this present situation, and I am talking about an international, political, governmental body like the UN having this debate in the first place. Revelation 18 foretells of a one world government in the future that will be based in Babylon, modern day Iraq, and a world dictator will rule from his headquarters there in Babylon. That world leader is known in the Bible by 27 different names, the most familiar to you is the name, the Antichrist.

As world leaders debate the fate of Israel and how Iran is a threat that must be dealt with, let me remind you that Bible prophecy will indeed be fulfilled.

http://news.prophecytoday.com/2012/09/world-leaders-use-un-general-assembly.html

September 29, 2012 Bible Reading

September 29

Reading for Today:

Isaiah 49:1–50:11

Psalm 112:1-4

Proverbs 26:13-15

Ephesians 1:1-23

Notes:

Isaiah 49:8- acceptable time…day of salvation. The Messiah is represented as asking for the grace of God to be given to sinners. God gives His favorable answer in a time of grace (61:1) when salvation’s day comes to the world (Gal. 4:4, 5; Heb. 4:7). At His appointed time in the future, the Lord will, by His Servant, accomplish the final deliverance of Israel. Paul applied these words to his ministry of proclaiming the gospel of God’s grace to all people (2 Cor. 6:2). a covenant to the people. When the Lord saves and regathers Israel, they will return to the land, to which Joshua brought their ancestors after their exit from Egypt, now restored and glorious (44:26; Josh. 13:1–8).

Isaiah 50:6- My back…My cheeks…My face. The Servant remained obedient though provoked to rebel by excessively vile treatment. Jesus fulfilled this prophecy by remaining submissive to the Father’s will (Matt. 26:67; 27:26, 30; Mark 14:65; 15:19; Luke 22:63; John 18:22).

Isaiah 50:7- set My face like a flint. So sure was He of the Lord God’s help that He resolutely determined to remain unswayed by whatever hardship might await Him (Ezek. 3:8, 9). Jesus demonstrated this determination in setting His face to go to Jerusalem to be crucified (Luke 9:51).

Ephesians 1:13, 14- sealed with the Holy Spirit. God’s own Spirit comes to indwell the believer and secures and preserves his eternal salvation. The sealing of which Paul speaks refers to an official mark of identification placed on a letter, contract, or other document. That document was thereby officially under the authority of the person whose stamp was on the seal. Four primary truths are signified by the seal: 1) security (Dan. 6:17;Matt. 27:62–66); 2) authenticity (1 Kin. 21:6–16); 3) ownership (Jer. 32:10); and 4) authority (Esth. 8:8–12). The Holy Spirit is given by God as His pledge of the believer’s future inheritance in glory (2 Cor. 1:21).

Ephesians 1:19, 20- exceeding greatness of His power. God’s great power, that very power which raised Jesus from the dead and lifted Him by ascension back to glory to take His seat at God’s right hand, is given to every believer at the time of salvation and is always available (Acts 1:8; Col. 1:29). Paul therefore did not pray that God’s power be given to believers but that they be aware of the power they already possessed in Christ and use it (3:20).

DAY 29: Why does Paul use the word [COLOR=Red]“mystery” so often in his letter to the Ephesians?[/COLOR]

Paul actually uses the word “mystery” six times in this letter (1:9; 3:3, 4, 9; 5:32; 6:19). By comparison, the word appears twice in Romans, once in 1 Corinthians, four times in Colossians, once in 1 Timothy, and nowhere else. Contrary to our use of “mystery” as a series of clues to be figured out, Paul’s use of the word points to mystery as a heretofore unrevealed truth that has been made clear. The word “mystery” preserves the sense that the revealed truth has such awesome implications that it continues to amaze and humble those who accept it.

Ephesians introduces various aspects of the “mystery.” Paul explained his use of the word in 3:4–6 by saying, “that the Gentiles should be fellow heirs, of the same body, and partakers of His promise in Christ through the gospel.” When the unsearchable riches of Christ are preached among the Gentiles, one result is an understanding of the “fellowship of the mystery” (3:9). And when God’s plan for human marriage is used to explain the unique relationship between Christ and His bride, the church, Paul reminded his readers that the real subject is a great mystery (5:32). And finally, Paul asked the Ephesians to pray for him that he would be able “boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel” (6:19).The gospel is not mysterious because it is hard to understand. It is mysterious because it is unexpected, unmerited, and free. Though Paul didn’t use the word in this passage, his summary of the mystery for the Ephesians can be found in 2:8,9: “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.”

http://www.gty.org/resources/devotionals/daily-bible

Praying for Others

Praying for Others

[COLOR=Red] “With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints” (Eph. 6:18).

The great preacher D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones wrote, “Before the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War, in Barcelona, Madrid and other places, there were psychological clinics with large numbers of neurotics undergoing drug treatments and others attending regularly for psychoanalysis and such like. They had their personal problems, their worries, their anxieties, their temptations, having to go back week after week, month after month, to the clinics in order to be kept going.

“Then came the Civil War; and one of the first and most striking effects of that War was that it virtually emptied the psychological and psychiatric clinics. These neurotic people were suddenly cured by a greater anxiety, the anxiety about their whole position, whether their homes would still be there, whether their husbands would still be alive, whether their children would be killed.

“Their greater anxieties got rid of the lesser ones. In having to give attention to the bigger problem they forgot their own personal and somewhat petty problems” (The Christian Soldier: An Exposition of Ephesians 6:10 to 20 [Grand Rapids: Baker, 1978], p. 357).

That’s a negative illustration of a positive principle: your own problems pale as you pray in the Spirit on behalf of others. Praying “in the Spirit” (Eph. 6:18) is praying in concert with the Holy Spirit–in harmony with His Person and will. It’s synonymous with praying according to God’s will (1 John 5:14).

As the Holy Spirit intercedes for you (Rom. 8:26-27), you are to intercede for others. That’s not always easy in our contemporary religious environment where self- centeredness is praised rather than shunned, and more and more professing Christians are embracing the health, wealth, and prosperity heresy. But God’s mandate is for us to love one another, pray for one another, and look out for one another’s interests (Phil. 2:3-4). Let that mandate govern all your relationships.

Suggestions for Prayer:

Make a list of people you want to intercede for.

Spend time praying for each person, asking God to show you specific ways to minister to his or her needs.

For Further Study:

Read Philippians 2:1-11.

What should be your attitude toward other believers?

How did Christ set an example of proper attitudes?[/COLOR]

http://www.gty.org/resources/devotionals

September 28, 2012 Bible Reading

September 28

Reading for Today:

Isaiah 47:1–48:22

Psalm 117:7-10

Proverbs 26:11-12

Galatians 6:1-18

Notes:

Isaiah 48:6- new things. From this point onward, the prophecies of the Messiah’s First and Second Coming and the restoration of Israel have a new distinctiveness. Babylon becomes the Babylon of Revelation (v. 20), and God uses Isaiah to communicate truths about the messianic kingdom on earth and the new heavens and new earth that follow it (e.g., 11:1–5; 65:17). Verse 7 indicates that God had never before revealed these features about the future.

Isaiah 48:10, 11- refined…tested. Since Isaiah’s time, Israel’s testings have included the Babylonian captivity and present worldwide dispersion from her land; unlike silver purged in the furnace, the purging of Israel is not complete, and they are not refined. But God keeps up the afflictions until they are, so His name is not defamed through the destruction of Israel. The nation will be purged (Zech. 13:1). God’s plan is such that He alone, not man or manmade idols, will receive credit for Israel’s salvation (42:8; Rom. 11:25–27, 33–36). The adversaries of God are never to be given legitimate reasons for scoffing at God and His work.

Galatians 6:8- sows to his flesh. Here it means pandering to the flesh’s evil desires. corruption. From the Greek word for degeneration, as in decaying food. Sin always corrupts and, when left unchecked, always makes a person progressively worse in character (Rom. 6:23). sows to the Spirit. To walk by the Holy Spirit. everlasting life. This expression describes not only a life that endures forever but, primarily, the highest quality of living that one can experience (Ps. 51:12; John 10:10; Eph. 1:3, 18).

Galatians 6:10- opportunity. This Greek word refers to a distinct, fixed time period rather than occasional moments. Paul’s point is that the believer’s entire life provides the unique privilege by which he can serve others in Christ’s name. especially…the household of faith. Our love for fellow Christians is the primary test of our love for God.

DAY 28: How do we restore a believer overtaken in sin?

In Galatians 6:1, Paul addresses the situation where someone is overtaken in a sin, which may imply the person was actually seen committing the sin or that he was caught or snared by the sin itself. Those believers who are walking in the Spirit, filled with the Spirit, and evidencing the fruit of the Spirit are to “restore” such a one. This is sometimes used metaphorically of settling disputes or arguments. It means “to mend” or “repair” and was used of setting a broken bone or repairing a dislocated limb (Heb. 12:12, 13; Rom. 15:1; 1 Thess. 5:14). The basic process of restoration is outlined in Matthew 18:15–20. “In a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted.” The Greek form strongly emphasizes a continual, diligent attentiveness.

“Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ” (v. 2). “Burdens” are extra heavy loads, which here represent difficulties or problems people have trouble dealing with. “Bear” connotes carrying something with endurance. The law of love which fulfills the entire law (John 13:34; Rom. 13:8, 10).

“But let each one examine his own work” (v. 4). Literally, “to approve something after testing it.” Believers first must be sure their lives are right with God before giving spiritual help to others (Matt. 7:3–5). “Have rejoicing in himself.” If a believer rejoices or boasts, it should be only boasting in the Lord for what God has done in him (2 Cor. 10:12–18), not for what he supposedly has accomplished compared to other believers.

“For each one shall bear his own load” (v. 5). This is not a contradiction to v. 2. “Load” has no connotation of difficulty; it refers to life’s routine obligations and each believer’s ministry calling (Matt. 11:30; 1 Cor. 3:12–15; 2 Cor. 5:10). God requires faithfulness in meeting those responsibilities.

http://www.gty.org/resources/devotionals/daily-bible

Knowing God

Knowing God

[COLOR=Red]”With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints” (Eph. 6:18).

Man’s highest purpose is to know God. Jesus prayed to the Father, saying, “This is eternal life, that they may know Thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom Thou hast sent” (John 17:3). Of us He said, “I am the good shepherd; and I know My own, and My own know Me” (John 17:3). John added that “we know that the Son of God has come, and has given us understanding, in order that we might know Him who is true, and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ” (1 John 5:20).

Every Christian knows God through salvation, but beyond that lies an intimate knowledge of God. That should be the quest of every believer. Moses prayed, “Let me know Thy ways, that I may know Thee, so that I may find favor in Thy sight” (Ex. 33:13). David entreated his son Solomon to “know the God of [his] father, and serve Him with a whole heart and a willing mind” (1 Chron. 28:9). Even the apostle Paul, who perhaps knew Christ more intimately than any human being thus far, never lost his passion for an even deeper knowledge (Phil. 3:10).

Such passion is the driving force behind powerful prayer. Those who know God best pray most often and most fervently. Their love for Him compels them to know and serve Him better.

How about you? Is your knowledge of God intimate? Does the character of your prayers reveal that you’re in the process of knowing God?

Paul’s admonitions to “pray at all times in the Spirit” and “be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints” (Eph. 6:18) presuppose that you know God and desire to see His will fulfilled in His people. If not, you’ll never appreciate the importance of interceding on behalf of others.

Suggestions for Prayer:

The martyred missionary Jim Elliot once prayed, “Lord, make my life a testimony to the value of knowing you.” Let that be your prayer each day.

For Further Study:

Read 1 Chronicles 28.

What did God forbid David to do?

What would happen to Solomon if he failed to know and serve God?[/COLOR]

http://www.gty.org/resources/devotionals

A massive naval exercise in the Persian Gulf prepares for war

A massive naval exercise in the Persian Gulf prepares for war

September 27, 2012

An ongoing US-led naval exercise involving 20 nations from the Asia-Pacific, Europe, the Middle East, and North America is preparation in order to ensure rapid control of the Persian Gulf in case of a war with Iran.

The US said in cooperation with Arab and NATO allies they are operating in every section of the gulf with the exception of the Strait of Hormuz.

The fear in the Persian Gulf is that Iran might drop mines in the gulf or at the Strait of Hormuz in an effort to slow down freedom of navigation thus stopping the flow of much needed oil supplies to the entire world.

Jimmy’s Prophetic Prospective on the News

As massive naval exercises take place in the Persian Gulf, the stage is indeed being set for Bible prophecy to be fulfilled.

Twenty nations from around the world have been involved in the US-led naval exercises in the Persian Gulf in order to protect the freedom of navigation in this strategic waterway in the Middle East. The flow of a majority of the world’s oil supply must travel out of the gulf through the Strait of Hormuz for delivery globally. With the threat of a war with Iran on the horizon, preparation must be made to ensure stability in the gulf. It is reality that has caused many world leaders to be concerned about the Iranian threat. According to Bible prophecy this concern is valid and the Middle East could indeed explode into an all-out war with not only Iran but other Middle Eastern nations as well.

Ezekiel 38:5 mentions Persia, modern day Iran, as one of the alignment of nations that will bring about war to the Middle Eastern region. Syria and Egypt are listed in Bible prophecy as nations that will be in that mix as well, Daniel 11:40. Libya, mentioned in Daniel 11:43 and Ezekiel 38:5 will join this same coalition of nations which will focus on the Jewish state of Israel that will actually bring about a regional war in the last days. The focus of the world has been on this volatile region as saber-rattling continues daily.

Naval exercises in the Persian Gulf are an indication that Bible prophecy will be fulfilled.

http://news.prophecytoday.com/2012/09/a-massive-naval-exercise-in-persian.html

September 27, 2012 Bible Reading

September 27

Reading for Today:

Isaiah 45:1–46:13

Psalm 111:1-6

Proverbs 26:10

Galatians 5:1-26

Notes:

Isaiah 45:1- His anointed. This word is the one translated from the Hebrew by the transliteration—“Messiah.” It is the word used for the messianic Redeemer King in Psalm 2:2 and Daniel 9:25, 26, but here refers to Cyrus, as the king set apart by God’s providence for divine purposes. Though not a worshiper of the Lord, the Persian monarch played an unusual role as Israel’s shepherd (44:28) and God’s anointed judge on nations.

Isaiah 45:21- there is no other…There is none. The Lord restated the truth expressed by Moses in Deuteronomy 4:35. The scribe who asked Jesus about the greatest commandment cited this same principle in agreeing with Jesus’ answer to his question (Mark 12:32).

Isaiah 45:23- every knee shall bow. In the kingdom age, all nations will worship the one true God of Israel. A further meaning, justified by the New Testament, applies this verse to believers’ accountability to God when He evaluates their works (Rom. 14:11). In assigning the words another meaning, Paul relates the words to the coming universal acknowledgment that “Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father” (Phil. 2:10, 11).

Galatians 5:1- Stand fast. Stay where you are, Paul asserts, because of the benefit of being free from the law and the flesh as a way of salvation and the fullness of blessing by grace. free. Deliverance from the curse that the law pronounces on the sinner who has been striving unsuccessfully to achieve his own righteousness (3:13, 22–26; 4:1–7), but who has now embraced Christ and the salvation granted to him by grace. entangled again. Better translated “to be burdened by,” “to be oppressed by,” or “to be subject to,” because of its connection with a yoke. yoke of bondage.“Yoke” refers to the apparatus used to control a domesticated animal. The Jews referred to the “yoke of the law” as a good thing, the essence of true religion. Paul argued that for those who pursued it as a way of salvation, the law was a yoke of slavery.

Galatians 5:6- neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything. Nothing done or not done in the flesh, even religious ceremony, makes any difference in one’s relationship to God. What is external is immaterial and worthless, unless it reflects genuine internal righteousness (Rom. 2:25–29). faith working through love. Saving faith proves its genuine character by works of love. The one who lives by faith is internally motivated by love for God and Christ (Matt. 22:37–40), which supernaturally issues forth in reverent worship, genuine obedience, and self-sacrificing love for others.

DAY 27: Describe the fruit of the Spirit.

The fruit of the Spirit are the godly attitudes that characterize the lives of only those who belong to God by faith in Christ and possess the Spirit of God. The Spirit produces fruit which consists of 9 characteristics or attitudes that are inextricably linked with each other and are commanded of believers throughout the New Testament.

“Love.” One of several Greek words for love, agape, is the love of choice, referring not to an emotional affection, physical attraction, or a familial bond, but to respect, devotion, and affection that leads to willing, self-sacrificial service (John 15:13; Rom. 5:8; 1 John 3:16, 17).“Joy.” A happiness based on unchanging divine promises and eternal spiritual realities. It is the sense of well-being experienced by one who knows all is well between himself and the Lord (1 Pet. 1:8). Joy is not the result of favorable circumstances, and even occurs when those circumstances are the most painful and severe (John 16:20–22). Joy is a gift from God, and as such, believers are not to manufacture it but to delight in the blessing they already possess (Rom.14:17; Phil. 4:4). “Peace.” The inner calm that results from confidence in one’s saving relationship with Christ. The verb form denotes binding together and is reflected in the expression “having it all together.” Like joy, peace is not related to one’s circumstances (John 14:27; Rom. 8:28; Phil. 4:6, 7, 9).

“Longsuffering.” Patience which refers to the ability to endure injuries inflicted by others and the willingness to accept irritating or painful situations (Eph. 4:2;Col. 3:12; 1 Tim.1:15,16). “Kindness.” Tender concern for others, reflected in a desire to treat others gently, just as the Lord treats all believers (Matt. 11:28, 29; 19:13, 14; 2 Tim. 2:24). “Goodness.” Moral and spiritual excellence manifested in active kindness (Rom. 5:7). Believers are commanded to exemplify goodness (6:10; 2 Thess. 1:11). “Faithfulness.” Loyalty and trustworthiness (Lam. 3:22; Phil. 2:7–9; 1 Thess. 5:24; Rev. 2:10).

“Gentleness.” Better translated “meekness.” It is a humble and gentle attitude that is patiently submissive in every offense, while having no desire for revenge or retribution. In the New Testament, it is used to describe 3 attitudes: submission to the will of God (Col. 3:12), teachability (James 1:21), and consideration of others (Eph. 4:2). “Self-control.” This refers to restraining passions and appetites (1 Cor. 9:25; 2 Pet. 1:5, 6). “No law.” When a Christian walks by the Spirit and manifests His fruit, he needs no external law to produce the attitudes and behavior that please God (Rom.8:4).

http://www.gty.org/resources/devotionals/daily-bible

Always Praying

Always Praying

[COLOR=Red] “With all prayer and petition pray at all times” (Eph. 6:18).

As important as prayer is to your Christian life, you might expect Paul to list it as another piece of spiritual armor, but he doesn’t. Instead, he makes it all-pervasive by instructing us to pray at all times. That’s our spiritual lifeline–the air our spirits breathe. The effectiveness of each piece of armor is directly related to the quality of our prayers.

We see the importance of prayer throughout the New Testament. Jesus instructed His disciples to be on the alert at all times, praying so that they would have strength to face the trials and temptations that lie ahead (Luke 21:36). The apostles devoted themselves to prayer (Acts 6:4), as did godly people like Cornelius (Acts 10:2). Every Christian is to be continually devoted to prayer (Rom. 12:12).

In Philippians 4:6 Paul says, “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.” He told the Thessalonians to “pray without ceasing” (1 Thess. 5:17) and instructed men everywhere to “pray, lifting up holy hands” (1 Tim. 2:8).

Jesus and Paul not only exhorted believers to pray, but also modeled diligent prayer in their own lives. Jesus often went for extended periods of time alone to pray. Paul wrote often of his own fervent prayers on behalf of others (cf. Col. 1:9; Philem. 4).

As a child, you may have been taught that prayer is reserved for mealtimes, bedtime, or church services. That’s a common misconception many children carry into their adult years. But believers are to be in constant communication with God, which is simply the overflow of seeing all of life from His perspective. Just as you would discuss your everyday experiences and feelings with a close friend, so you’re to discuss them with God.

God loves you and wants to share your every joy, sorrow, victory, and defeat. Be conscious of His presence today and take advantage of the sweet communion He offers.

Suggestions for Prayer:

Thank God that He’s always available to hear your prayers.

Ask Him to give you a desire to commune with Him more faithfully.

For Further Study:

What do these verses say about the most appropriate times for prayer: Psalm 55:16-17, Daniel 6:10, Luke 6:12, and 1 Timothy 5:5?[/COLOR]

http://www.gty.org/resources/devotionals