Devotions

Devotions

Together Day by Day: Who Can Stand?

“But who can endure the day of his coming, and who can stand when he appears? For he is like a refiner’s fire and like fullers’ soap.” Malachi 3:2 (Context: Malachi 3:1-4) After centuries of hoping, and trying, and failing, the Jews were eager for the Messiah to come set things right.  In many ways, we are like them, longing for God to finish making things right.  We too must hear Malachi’s warning; the Messiah will make everything right, including…

Together Day by Day: A Prayer of Repentance

We have acted very corruptly against you and have not kept the commandments, the statutes, and the rules that you commanded your servant Moses. Remember the word that you commanded your servant Moses, saying, ‘If you are unfaithful, I will scatter you among the peoples, but if you return to me and keep my commandments and do them, though your outcasts are in the uttermost parts of heaven, from there I will gather them and bring them to the place…

Together Day by Day: Gladness and Joy

And in every province and in every city, wherever the king’s command and his edict reached, there was gladness and joy among the Jews, a feast and a holiday. And many from the peoples of the country declared themselves Jews, for fear of the Jews had fallen on them. Esther 8:17 (Context: Esther 2:1-23, 8:1-17) The story of Esther unfolds without an mention of God, and yet it’s audacious and intricate plot paints an undeniable portrait of Providence.  God had…

Together Day by Day: In Case You Were Wondering…

In the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, that the word of the Lord by the mouth of Jeremiah might be fulfilled, the Lord stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, so that he made a proclamation throughout all his kingdom and also put it in writing: “Thus says Cyrus king of Persia: The Lord, the God of heaven, has given me all the kingdoms of the earth, and he has charged me to build him a…

Together Day by Day: When God Forgets

And no longer shall each one teach his neighbor and each his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, declares the Lord. For I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.” Jeremiah 31:34 (Context: Jeremiah 31:31-40) It is such an incredible promise that just hearing jars the mind, God promises to forget!  He promises to forget sin, rebellion, blasphemy!  It’s certainly not something…

Together Day by Day: For the Sake of My Name

“And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules. You shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers, and you shall be my people, and I will be your God.” Ezekiel 36:27-28 (Context: Ezekiel 36:22-38) Why did Yaweh make such a promise to Israel?  “For the sake of my holy name,” says Yaweh.  God attached His name to Abraham’s descendants, calling them to be…

Together Day by Day: Sin Fully Grown

“And he burned the house of the Lord and the king’s house and all the houses of Jerusalem; every great house he burned down. And all the army of the Chaldeans, who were with the captain of the guard, broke down the walls around Jerusalem. And the rest of the people who were left in the city and the deserters who had deserted to the king of Babylon, together with the rest of the multitude, Nebuzaradan the captain of the…

Together Day by Day: The Law of His God

“Then these men said, ‘We shall not find any ground for complaint against this Daniel unless we find it in connection with the law of his God.’” Daniel 6:5 (Context: Daniel 6:1-28) Daniel was rising quickly in his workplace, so jealous colleagues started digging for dirt.  That’s normal.  What’s not normal is that they came up empty!  Scripture does not suggest Daniel was a perfect man, but he was a righteous man.  One can assume that there was dirt on…