Daily Scripture thoughts, Books (biblical fiction, non-fiction, storybooks), books for blind

Northern Lights Publishing House

Month: May 2015 Page 1 of 4

The scripture for today, May 31, is Deuteronomy 5:31 as found in the Old Testament of the Bible:

“But you [Moses] may stay here [on the mountain] with me [God] so that I may give you all the commands, decrees, and laws you are to teach them to follow in the land I am giving them to possess.”

Many people believe that the “Law of Moses” consisted only of the Ten Commandments. But there was much more. It took Moses 40 days to write them all down. How many? Over 600 “commands, decrees and laws.”

Some people today want to dip back into the Law of Moses to get showy types of worship ~ candles, incense, stoning for adultery, instruments of music, choirs, animal sacrifices, separate priesthood, special clothing for priests, and tithing to pay for it all. Jesus nailed the old law to the cross (Colossians 2:14) and created a much simpler New Testament/Covenant! “By calling this covenant [testament] ‘new’ he has made the first one obsolete; and what is obsolete and aging will soon disappear’ ” (Hebrews 8:13). Not part of it. All of it.

Thank God we do not have to keep all those 600+ commandments in the Law of Moses. They were controlling and tedious, and some were impossible to keep. Why would God give a law impossible to keep? To help us understand that it is impossible for us to be perfect. Finally, understanding that, He was ready to send His Son to earth to be perfect for us.

The scripture for today, May 30, is John 5:30 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

“By myself I can do nothing; I judge only as I hear, and my judgment is just, for I seek not to please myself but him who sent me.”

It is hard to judge people we know, and leave our own egos out. If we are jealous, we may judge them harshly. If we admire the person, we may judge them too loosely. Perhaps if we try to walk in their shoes, it will help us understand and not judge too harshly. And perhaps if we compare an admired person to Jesus, it will help us understand and not judge too loosely.

We’re not talking judgmentalism here where we go around sizing other people up all the time so we can feel superior to them. In judging, we judge, then we accept people where they are. Only then can we become their true friend.

If we truly love others, we will not, when judging, seek to please ourselves. But to please our Creator who knows our hearts and loves us all the very best.

The scripture for today, May 29, is Acts 5:29 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

“Peter and the other apostles replied, ‘We must obey God rather than men.’ “

There are many countries in the world today where a person is beaten, imprisoned and/or killed for believing in Jesus Christ or owning a Bible. They must stay in the background and try to remain relatively unnoticed in order to survive. But their faith continues unabated, even amidst their fears. The church has survived persecution for 2000 years.

Even if they’re not killed, they are by-passed for promotion at work or fired, they are harassed when out shopping, they are threatened in public transportation, they are turned down for a good education, and they must tolerate derision just walking down the street or waiting at a bus stop. But their faith continues unabated, even amidst their fears.

Such events are usually covered up by governments and news media, and the good people of those countries never know it is happening. There are various newsletters on the internet about the persecuted that you can sign up for. One is at www.persecution.org that sends news as soon as it happens. Let us daily hold up these brave souls in our prayers ~ those who obey God rather than men. In eternity, it will be God that we turn to, not men.

The scripture for today, May 28, is Luke 5:28 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

“And Levi got up, left everything and followed him [Jesus].”

This Levi was a tax collector, who, in those days, was allowed to set his own tax rates so he could pocket some of it for himself. Why would such a man follow Jesus, a man who apparently didn’t have much money of his own? He had to trust Jesus and believe that he was truly a friend.

And why would Jesus ask him? Jesus was certainly taking a chance, since the uppity leaders of society and their religion openly declared Jesus a bad person for associating with “sinners and tax collectors”. Jesus, in turn, had to trust and believe in Levi.

A lot of Christians brag that their only friends are those who worship with them. They don’t really trust anyone else, so don’t really want to be anyone else’s friend. Well, how are you supposed to bring anyone to Jesus? Jesus went out to “seek and save the lost.”

And sometimes there is a visitor at worship who isn’t dressed right ~ perhaps with uncombed hair, or smell from no shower, or makeup put on too heavy, or clothes not in style, or maybe even dressed too richly. Are we ashamed to be seen with them? Jesus wouldn’t have been. He was color blind, style blind, class blind.

Today, reach out and make friends with someone you have been staying away from. Jesus did. And thereby, you will be like him.

The scripture for today, May 27, is Job 5:27 as found in the Old Testament of the Bible:

“We have examined this, and it is true. So hear it and apply it to yourself.”

How many times have we gone to worship or listened on TV to a minister/priest/rabbi/imam and believed everything he said because the speaker looked so holy and convincing? Isn’t that confusing when so many different religious leaders teach different things, often conflicting?

What is the answer to this dilemma? Examine the Bible for yourself! You’re smart! You can do it!

The best way is to get a concordance. It has every word in the Bible alphabetically, and every scripture that contains that word. If you want to know God’s opinion instead of man’s, use your concordance and look up every passage your chosen topic appears in. You can buy one (it is the size of a large-city telephone book) or use one on the internet.

Then examine everything God ~ not man ~ has to say about anything. Then there are no doubts. Then you know the truth and are ready to apply it to yourself.

The scripture for today, May 26, is 1st Thessalonians 5:26 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

“Brothers, pray for us.”

Do you have a prayer list? There are many people we can pray for besides ourselves. Often prayers get bogged down and short because the only person we “remember” in prayer is ourselves. Well, and maybe a relative or two.

There are many people who need your prayers: Your family is obvious. How about your neighbors? If you don’t know their names, pray for them by house or apartment number. What about the newspaper? Everyone of those bad-news stories is crying out for prayer. The school near you needs your prayers ~ students, teachers, administrators, janitors. It doesn’t matter whether you have a child in that school; pray for them anyway. Who are your local government officials? Not liking them doesn’t make any different, for Jesus said we are to pray for our enemies too. And that leads to the list of your enemies; do you have any at your work place? Include them too. It’s pretty hard to resent someone you pray for.

One other thing you might try doing in addition to having a prayer list: Have an answered-prayer list. Write down when you pray for someone, then when it is answered. Keep it as a reminder when you are down and don’t think He’s ever going to answer your requests. God does care after all.


And speaking of requests, by the time you’re done praying for all the other people on your prayer list, you won’t have a lot of time to pray for yourself. And that is okay too, for others are praying for you!

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The scripture for today, May 25, is Galatians 5:25f as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

“Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.”

When someone is better than us in doing something, do we pick fights with them as punishment, or spread gossip about them in order to get others to quit respecting them?

Perhaps we don’t do this all the time. But what about times when there is something we feel we are really good at, but another person not as talented gets the honor? That’s when it’s hard to “keep in step with the Spirit.”

Whenever we envy someone, deep down we consider that person our enemy. Jesus said, “Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven” (Matthew 5:44-45a).

To many, loving our enemy is the most difficult command in the Bible. Perhaps one way to love our “enemy” is to realize that Jesus loved his enemies. Every time we sin, we become one of his enemies. But Jesus keeps right on loving us, even when we don’t want to stop doing whatever we shouldn’t.

Jesus demonstrates the love of the Son of God. And here he says, if we love our enemies, we are demonstrating what the sons of God do. And that is far more important than honor that goes to those we envy. Leaving behind conceit makes it much easier to love everyone.

The scripture for today, May 24, is Amos 5:24 as found in the Old Testament of the Bible:

“Let justice roll on like a river, righteousness like a never-failing stream.”

When individuals of a nation begin taking advantage of each other, the nation loses its standard of justice. Eventually nations fall because of it ~ Maybe not right away, but eventually.

Although acting justly may decrease someone’s income or status or power, that nation will roll on and on like a river.

Injustice is not impersonal. Injustice begins with you. One person at a time, then eventually an entire nation falls. On the other hand, justice also begins with you. One person at a time, and the nation rolls on and on like a river.

What are you doing for your nation?

The scripture for today, May 22, is Galatians 5:22f as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

There are some people in the world who call people who practice these traits “losers.” They believe you have to stick up for yourself and get ahead of the pack or the world will trample you and pass you by.

They are a lot like drivers out on a highway who think they have to pass every car. Once they do, there is usually a brief period when they are ahead of all the others. But soon they catch up with another pack of cars, and begin all over again to pass every one. And so it happens over and over endlessly. They never relax, for they are never ahead of the others for very long.

Today, let us relax a little. Let us exercise self-control. There is no law against slowing down. And in the process find peace.

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