Scroll down or select desired date
Jan Feb Mar April May June July Aug Sept Oct Nov Dec
Return to Devotional Archive Home
liberal soul shall be made fat." #Prov 11:25
unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing
in his wings"
once in the first advent of our glorious Lord, and yet to have a fuller
accomplishment in His second advent, yet this gracious word is also for
daily use. Is it dark for you? Does the night deepen into a denser
blackness? Still, do not despair: the sun will yet rise. When the night is
darkest, dawn is nearest.
sun which will arise is no common sort. It is THE sun—the Sun of
Righteousness, whose every ray is holiness. He comes to cheer us, comes in
the way of justice as well as of mercy, comes to violate no law even to save
us… ah even to heal us. Jesus as much displays the holiness of God as His
love. Our deliverance, when it comes, will be safe because it is righteous.
one question should be—"Do we fear the name of the Lord? Do we
reverence the living God, and walk in His ways? "Then for us the night must
be short; and when the morning comes, all the sickness even the sorrow
of our soul will be over forever. Light, warmth, joy, and clearness of
vision will come, and healing of every disease and distress will quickly
Jesus risen on us? Let us sit in the sun. Is He hidden below the distressed
horizon from our gaze? Then wait for His rising. He will shine forth as
surely as the sun.
"My God will hear
me" #Mic 7:7
Friends may be unfaithful, but the Lord will not turn away
from the gracious soul; on the contrary, He will hear all its desires. The
prophet says, "Keep the doors of thy mouth from her that lieth in
thy bosom. A man’s enemies are the men of his own house." This is
a heartbreaking state of affairs; but even in such a case the Best Friend
remains true, and we may tell Him all our grief.
Our wisdom is to look unto the Lord, and not to quarrel with men or
women. If our loving appeals are disregarded by our own relatives, wait upon
the God of our salvation, for He will hear us. He will hear us all the more
because of the unkindness and oppression of others, and we shall soon have
reason to cry, "Rejoice not against me, O mine enemy!"
Because God is the living God, He can hear; because He is a loving
God, He will hear; because He is our covenant God, He has bound Himself to
hear us. If each of us find in our heart to speak of Him as "My
God," we may with absolute certainty say, "My God will hear
me." Come, now, wounded heart, let your sorrows speak out to
the Lord your God! I will bow the knee in secret, and inwardly whisper, "My
God will hear me."
A HEAVENLY ESCORT
"And, behold, I am
with thee, and will keep thee in all places whither thou goest" #Gen.
Do we need traveling mercies? Here are the choice ones—God’s
presence and preservation. In all places we need both of these, and in all
places we will have them if we go in obedience to the call of duty, and not
merely according to our own fancy.
Why should we look upon removal to another place as a sorrowful
necessity when it is presented to us by the divine will? In all lands,
in all situations and in every state of being, the believer is equally a
pilgrim and a stranger; and yet in everything the Lord is His
dwelling-place, even as He has been to His saints in all generations. We may
miss the seeming safety of yesterdays place and perceived protection
thinking the new a foreboding danger, but when God says, "I will keep
thee," we are in no real danger. This is a blessed passport for a
spiritual traveler, and a heavenly escort for a spiritual emigrant. Staying
the same is seldom God’s will. We must grow. We must grow by
faith not by sight. We must increase in His wisdom.
Jacob had never left his father’s room before: he had been a
mother’s boy, and not an adventurer like his brother. Yet he began to
travel by fearful necessity, and God went with him. He had little luggage,
and no attendants; yet no prince ever journeyed with a nobler bodyguard.
Even while he slept in the open field, angels watched over him, and the Lord
God spoke to him. If the Lord bids us go, let us say with our Lord Jesus,
"Arise, let us go hence."
No Higher Calling
than Ministry of the Holy Spirit
"He [God] also chose David His servant And took him from the
sheepfolds; From the care of the ewes with suckling lambs He brought him
He was a
wise ruler, and the psalmist magnifies the Lord for having appointed him.
In closing the Psalm we are glad it ended so peacefully; with all
noise of tumult or of sinful rites hushed into silence. After a long voyage
over a stormy sea, the ark of the God’s people rested on its mount, it’s
sure foundation, beneath a wise and gentle reign, to be hurled about no more
hither and thither by floods and gales. The psalmist had all along
intended to make this his last stanza, and we too may be content to finish
all our songs of love with the reign of the Lord's anointed.
have we ended this lengthy parable, may we in our life parable have less
curse, and as much of grace as displayed in God’s record of His highly
favored children, and may we close it under the safe guidance of "that
great Shepherd of the sheep." AMEN.
GOD WILL ANSWER
"He will fulfill
the desire of them that fear him: he also will hear their cry, and will save
them" Psalm 145:19
Holy Spirit has shaped this desire in us, therefore He will answer it. It is
Christ own life within which prompts the cry, and therefore He absolutely
will hear it. Those who fear Him are men under the holiest influence, and,
therefore, their desire is to glorify God, and enjoy Him forever. Like
Daniel, they are men of desires, and the Lord will cause them to realize
desires are a grace given in the new spring sprout, and the heavenly
Husbandman will cultivate them until they come to a full ear of corn.
God-fearing men desire to be holy, to be useful, to be a blessing to others,
and so to honor their Lord. They desire supplies for their need, help under
burdens, guidance in perplexity, deliverance in distress; and sometimes this
desire is so strong, and their case so pressing, that they cry out in agony.
Crying out as little children in pain, and then the Lord works most
comprehensively, and does all that is needful, according to this Word—and
will save them.
if we fear God, we have nothing else to fear; if we cry to the Lord, our
salvation is certain.
this text on your tongue, and keep it in your mouth all day long, and it
will be to you as "a wafer of sweet delicacy."
GOD CAN MAKE YOU STRONG
"Be ye strong
therefore, and let not your hands be weak: for your work shall be
rewarded" #2Ch 15:7
did great things for King Asa and Judah, but yet they were feeble folks.
Their feet were tottering in the ways of the Lord, and their hearts very
hesitating, so that they had to be warned that the Lord would be with them
while they were with Him, but that if they forsook Him He would leave them.
This was the case under the old covenant. They were also reminded of
the sister kingdom, how poorly it fared in its rebellion, and how the Lord
was gracious to them when repentance was shown. The Lord’s design was to
confirm them in His way, and make them strong in righteousness. So it ought
to be with us. God deserves to be served with all the energy of which we are
capable. Though today He is with us and will never leave us, we still tie
the hands of God with half hearted responses or staggering faith to serve
God’s Word in the church.
the service of God is worth anything, it is worth everything. We shall find
our best reward in the Lord’s work if we do it with determined diligence.
Our labor is not in vain in the Lord, and we know it. Half-hearted work will
not bring reward; but, when we throw our whole soul into the cause, we shall
see prosperity. This text was sent to the author of these notes in a day of
terrible storm, and it suggested to proceed under full steam, with the
assurance of reaching one’s goals in safety and with a glorious provision.
YOU DEAL WITH GOD
"I will not
execute the fierceness of mine anger, I will not return to destroy Ephraim:
for I am God, and not man" Hosea 11:9
The Lord makes known His sparing mercies in today’s text. It may
be that the reader is now under heavy displeasure, and everything threatens
a speedy doom. Let the Word of God hold him up from despair. The Lord
invites you to consider your ways, and confess your sins. If He had been
man, He would have cut you off long ago. If He were now to act after the
manner of men, it would be a word and a blow and then it would be an end of
you: but this is not so, for "as high as the heavens are above
the earth, so high are his ways above your ways."
You rightly judge that He is angry, but He keeps not His anger for
ever: if you turn from sin to Jesus, God will turn from wrath. Because God
is God, and not man, there is still forgiveness for you, even though you may
be steeped up to your throat in iniquity. You have a God to deal with, and
not a hard man, nor even a merely just man. No human being could have
patience with you: you would have wearied out an angel, as you have wearied
your sorrowing father; but God is longsuffering. Come and try Him now.
Confess Jesus as Lord, believe, and turn from your evil way, and you shall
"The Lord hath
been mindful of us: he will bless us" #Ps 115:12
I can relate to that first sentence. Can’t you? Yes, the Lord has
thought of us, provided for us, comforted us, delivered us, and guided us.
In all the movements of His divine intervention He has been mindful of us,
never overlooking our day to day affairs. His mind has been full of us—that
is another definition of the word "mindful." This has been the
case all along; without a single break. At special times, however, we have
more distinctly seen this mindfulness, and we would recall them at this hour
with overflowing gratitude. Yes, yes, "the Lord hath been mindful of
The next sentence is a logical inference from the former one. Since
God is unchangeable, He will continue to be mindful of us in the future as
He has been in the past; and His mindfulness is tantamount to blessing us.
But we have here, not only the conclusion of reason but the declaration of
inspiration: we have it on the Holy Ghost’s authority—"HE
WILL BLESS US." This means great things and even the unsearchable. The very
indistinctness of the promise indicates its infinite reach. He will bless us
after His own divine manner, and that forever and ever. Therefore, each say,
the Lord, O my soul!"
GOD DELIGHTS TO GIVE
"And the Lord said
unto Abraham, after that Lot was separated from him, Lift up now thine eyes,
and look from the place where thou art northward, and southward, and
eastward, and westward: for all the land which thou seest, to thee will I
give it, and to thy seed for ever" #Ge 13:14,15
A special blessing for a memorable occasion. Abram had settled a
family dispute. He had said, "Let there be no strife, I pray thee,
between thee and me, for we be brethren;" and hence he received the
blessing which belongs to peacemakers. The Lord and giver of peace delights
to manifest His grace to those who seek peace and pursue it. If we desire
closer communion with God, we must keep closer to the ways of peace.
Abram behaved very generously to his kinsman, giving him his choice
of the land. If we deny ourselves for peace’ sake, the Lord will more than
make it up to us. As far as the patriarch can see, he can claim, and we may
possess this privilege like Abram; by faith. Abram had to wait for the
actual possession, but the Lord facilitated the giving of the land upon him
and his posterity. Boundless blessings belong to us by covenant gift. We are
Abraham’s posterity. All things are ours. When we please the Lord, the
veil on our eyes is removed and He makes us to look everywhere, and see all
things our own, whether things present, or things to come, all are ours, and
we are Christ’s, and Christ is God’s.
ARE THE KIDS IN?
"I will pour my
spirit upon thy seed, and my blessing upon thine offspring" #Isa 44:3
Our dear children do not have the Spirit of God by nature, as we
plainly see. We see much in them which makes us fear as to their future, and
this drives us to agonizing prayer. When a son becomes especially fallen
away, we cry with Abraham, "Oh, that Ishmael might live before
thee!" We would sooner see our daughters live as Hannah than as queens.
This verse should greatly encourage us. It follows upon the words,
"Fear not, O Jacob, my servant," and it has the potential to
banish our fears.
The Lord will give His Spirit; will give it plentifully, pouring it
out; will give it effectually, so that it shall be a real and eternal
blessing. Under this divine outpouring our children shall come forward, and
"one shall say, I am the Lord’s; and another shall call himself by
the name of Jacob."
This is one of those promises which we with offspring inquire of
the Lord often. We should, at set times, and in a distinct manner, pray for
our offspring? We cannot give them new hearts, but the Holy Spirit can; and
He is easily to be entreated of. We cannot always have power over their
faith or lack thereof but the Holy Spirit can, The great Father takes
pleasure in the prayers of fathers and mothers. Do you have any dear ones
outside of the ark? Then do not rest till they are shut in with us by the
Lord’s own hand.
A MAN WITHOUT FEAR
"And he said,
Certainly I will be with thee" #Ex 3:12
Of course, if the Lord sent Moses on an errand, He would not let
him go alone. The tremendous risk which it would involve, and the great
power it would require, would render it ridiculous for God to send a poor
lone Hebrew to confront the mightiest king in all the world, and then leave
him to himself. It could not be imagined that a wise God would match poor
Moses with Pharaoh and the enormous forces of Egypt. Hence He says,
"Certainly I will be with thee," as if it were out of the question
that He would send him alone.
In my case, also, the same rule holds good. If I go upon the
Lord’s errand, with a simple reliance upon His power, and a single eye to
His glory, it is certain that He will be with me. His sending me binds
Him to back me up. Is this not enough? What more can I want? If all
the angels and archangels were with me, I might fail; but if HE is with me,
I must succeed. Only let me take care that I act worthily toward this
promise. Let me not go timidly, half-heartedly, carelessly, presumptuously.
What manner of person ought I to be who has God with him! In such company it
behooves me to play the man, and like Moses go in unto Pharaoh without fear.
EVEN THE FAINTEST CALL
"And it shall come
to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be
delivered" #Joel 2:32
Why do I not call on His name? Why do I run to this neighbor and
that, when God is so near and will hear my faintest call? Why do I sit down,
and devise schemes, and invent plans? Why not now roll myself and my burden
upon the Lord? Straightforward is the best runner—why do I not run right
now to the living God? In vain I look for deliverance anywhere else; but
with God I shall find it; for here I have His royal “SHALL”
to make it sure.
I need not ask whether I may call on Him or not, for that word
"Whosoever" is a very wide and comprehensive one. Whosoever means
me, for it means anybody and everybody who calls upon God. I therefore will
follow the leading of the text, and right now will call upon the glorious
Lord who has made so large a promise.
My case is urgent, and I do not see how I am to be delivered; but
this is no business of mine. He who makes the promise will find out ways and
means of keeping it. It is mine to obey His commands; it is not mine to
direct His counsels. I am His servant, not His solicitor. I call upon Him,
and He will deliver me.
I see the blood, I will pass over you" #Ex 12:13
own sight of the precious blood is for my comfort; but it is the Lord’s
sight of it which safely secures me. Even when I am unable to see it, the
Lord looks at it, and passes over me because of it. If I am disquieted,
because my faith is dim, yet I am equally safe, because the Lord’s eye is
not dim, and He sees the blood of the great Sacrifice with a steady gaze.
This brings great joy to my heart!
Lord sees the deep inner meaning, the infinite fullness of all that is meant
by the death of His dear Son. He sees it with restful memory of justice
satisfied, and all His matchless attributes glorified. He beheld creation in
its progress, and said, "It is very good;" but what does He say of
redemption in its completeness? What does He say of the obedience even unto
death of His Well-beloved Son? No one can know our Father’s delight in
Jesus, His rest in the sweet savor which Jesus presented when He offered
Himself without spot unto God.
we rest in calm security. We have God’s Sacrifice and God’s Word to
create in us a sense of perfect security. He will, He must, pass over us,
because He did not spare our glorious Substitute. Justice joins hands with
love to provide everlasting salvation for all the blood-sprinkled ones.
I came from my mother's womb, And naked I shall return there. The LORD gave
and the LORD has taken away. Blessed be the name of the LORD." Job
this incredible statement, God added:
all this Job did not sin nor did he blame God. (1:22)
about now, I'm shaking my head. How could anyone handle such a series of
grief-laden ordeals so calmly? Think of the aftermath: bankruptcy, pain,
weakness, 10 fresh graves . . . the loneliness of those empty rooms. Yet we
read that he worshiped God, he did not sin, nor did he blame his Maker.
why didn't he? How could he ward off the bitterness or ignore thoughts of
suicide? At the risk of oversimplifying the situation, I suggest three basic
answers: Job claimed God's loving assurance in His Word; he counted on the
promise of resurrection; and he confessed his own lack of control deferring
to the hope of God’s best.
"And ye shall go
forth, and grow up as calves of the stall" Malachi 4:2
Yes, when the sun shines, even the sick leave their bed chambers,
and walk outside to breathe the fresh air. When the sun brings spring and
summer, the cattle leave their stalls, and seek pasture on the higher
mountains and hills. Thus, when we have conscious fellowship with our Lord,
“we leave the stall of despondency, and walk abroad in the fields of holy
confidence. We ascend to the mountains of joy, and feed on sweet pasturage
which grows nearer Heaven than the food of carnal men.”
To "go forth" and to "grow up" is a double promise. Be eager to enjoy both blessings! Why should you be a prisoner? Arise, walk free. Jesus said that His sheep shall go in and out and find pasture; go forth and feed in the rich meadows of boundless love.
It does not say,
"Do not make him angry."
The Good Fight
Fight the good fight of faith....-1 Timothy 6:12
The only fight the Christian is called upon to fight is the
If you're in any other kind of fight, you're in the wrong
kind of fight. There's no need to fight the devil - Jesus has already
defeated him. There's no need for fighting sin - Jesus is the cure for
sin. But there is a fight (enemies or hindrances) to faith.
The greatest enemy to faith is a lack of understanding of
God's Word. In fact, all hindrances to faith center around this lack
of knowledge, because you cannot believe or have faith beyond your actual
knowledge of the Word of God.
However, your faith will automatically expand into your
physical world as your understanding of God's Word grows (Romans 10:17).
If your faith is not put into effect, it's because your knowledge of God's
Word is not growing. And you cannot grow or develop spiritually if you
are not exercising your God given faith.
is not bliss
the Scriptures daily to see whether these things were so" (Acts 17:11).
Slice it any way you
wish, ignorance is not bliss. Dress it in whatever garb you please, ignorance is not attractive.
Neither is it the mark of humility nor the path to spirituality. It
certainly is not the companion of wisdom.
On the contrary, it
is the breeding ground for fear, prejudice, and superstition . . . the
feeding trough for unthinking animals . . . the training field for slavery.
It is blind and naked (Tennyson), the mother of impudence (Spurgeon), it
brings despairing darkness (Shakespeare), never settles a question
(Disraeli), nor promotes innocence (Browning). And yet it remains the
favorite plea of the guilty, the excuse of the lazy---and even the
Christian's rationalization for immaturity.
In Samuel's day, a
school of the prophets was formed to dispel the ignorance among the people.
carried into the New Testament as Jesus frequently rebuked His listeners for
not reading, not knowing the underlying principles for living. How often
Paul expressed similar convictions with such strong words as, "I do not
want you to be unaware." Dr. Luke commended the church at Berea because
they were "examining the Scriptures daily to see whether these things
were so" (Acts 17:11). Swindoll
triumph o’er His foes
And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying,
Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou
forsaken me? Matthew 27:46
appeared to be defeat was actually the preface of victory. That ugly, rugged
cross took its toll, but it failed to have the final voice.
in the silence of night, against all odds and in mockery of strong-armed
soldiers, that victim became the Victor. "Up from the grave He arose,
with a mighty triumph o'er His foes." Or, as Charles Wesley wrote of
that Easter-morning miracle:
redeeming work is done, Alleluia!
bloody battlefield paled into a misty memory as the tomb opened its jaws for
all to enter. Death could not keep its prey . . . He tore the bars away . .
. He came back from beyond. In the bowels of the earth, deep in the
shadows of Sheol, there was a cry of war, chains of death and sin exploded
casting the fallen warriors of evil in all directions. The combat
heightened as Jesus in resurrection power came hand to hand with the prince
of darkness in his desperate attempt to stop the Lord of Glory. All
his dark might, all his dark power brought to naught as he bowed his head
under the foot of the King of Heaven, Earth, and the Grave.
year the empty cross, yes the empty tomb, yes even the empty paradise makes
its own bold proclamation. Etched into the monument of victory is a
Name that is above every name, the gentle Conqueror, the King of Kings, the
Easter Sunday we shall again visit that historic battleground. We won't find
Him there on a cross or standing tall as a bronzed statue of the cross.
For "He is not here . . . He has risen, just as He said" (Matthew
Eph 4:20 But you did
not learn Christ in this way,
21 if indeed you
have heard Him and have been taught in Him, just as truth is in Jesus,
22 that, in
reference to your former manner of life, you lay aside the old self, which
is being corrupted in accordance with the lusts of deceit,
23 and that you
be renewed in the spirit of your mind,
24 and put on
the new self, which in the likeness of God has been created in righteousness
and holiness of the truth.
laying aside falsehood, SPEAK TRUTH EACH ONE OF YOU WITH HIS NEIGHBOR, for
we are members of one another.
Philip Bailey, the nineteenth-century poet, made this
“The first and worst of all frauds is to cheat oneself.
Receive the best you can be. Do not consider your life a
lost sacrifice but rather a promise being fulfilled. Think long
term… What will I be known for? Communicate your good deeds and reap
the benefits of righteousness. Begin today to build your blessings and
give praise to God in all things.
children, guard yourselves from idols. (1 John 5:21)
out," said John, in effect. "Be on guard against anything that
might occupy the place in your heart that should be reserved for God."
John never qualified
that warning. The aged apostle deliberately refrained from classifying the
idols or giving us a comprehensive list to follow. It's an unconditional
command. Any idol,
regardless of its beauty or usefulness or original purpose, is to be set
aside so that Christ might reign supreme, without a single competitor.
I don't have many
temptations to worship evil things. It's the good
things that plague me. It isn't
as difficult for me to reject something that is innately bad or wrong as it
is to keep those good and wholesome things off the throne. That, I believe,
is where the battle line begins. Swindoll
Act in Love
of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto
the Salvation of the Lord
Stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord. Exodus
SO AS TO BE HEARD
ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it
shall be done unto you" John 15:7
a clear note of this, that we must hear Jesus speak if we expect Him to hear
us speak. If we have no ear for Christ, He will have no ear for us. In
proportion as we hear we shall be heard.
what is heard must remain, must live in us, and must abide in our character
as a force and a power. We must receive the truths which Jesus teaches, the
precepts which He issues, and the movements of His Spirit within us; or we
shall have no power at the mercy-seat.
for a moment of the boundless field of privilege that opens to us when we
receive our Lord’s words, and have them abide in us! We are to have
whatever we ask in prayer, because we have already surrendered our
will to the Lord’s command. Thus are Elijahs trained to handle the keys of
Heaven, and lock or loose the clouds. One such man is worth a thousand
common souls. Do we humbly desire to be intercessors for the church and the
world, and like Luther to be able to have what we will of the Lord? Then we
must bow our ear to the voice of the Well-beloved, and treasure His words,
and carefully obey them. One has need to "hearken diligently" if
you want to pray effectually.
Victory of Faith
Thus David prevailed over the
Philistine with a sling and a stone, and he struck the Philistine and killed
him; but there was no sword in David's hand.
“What an interesting counterstrategy! To this day, two timeless truths of giant warfare live on. Both are as appropriate today as they were in the days of Goliath.
Prevailing over giants isn't accomplished by using their technique. That's "lesson one" for all of us. Goliath might have been mistaken for the battleship Missouri with all his noise and bronze. Not David . . . he didn't even carry a sword! His greatest piece of armor, the lethal weapon that made him unique and gave him victory, was his inner shield of faith. It kept him free from fear, it made him hard of hearing threats, it gave him cool composure amidst chaos, and it cleared his vision.Conquering giants isn't accomplished without great skill and discipline. To be God's warrior, to fight His way, demands much more expertise and control than one can imagine. Using the sling and stone of the Spirit is a far more delicate thing than swinging the club of the flesh. But oh, how sweet is the victory when the stone finds its mark . . . and how final.”
Published by Amazing Grace Ministries Publishing, Westchester. Illinois Distributed by Amazing Grace Ministries Publishing, Westchester. Illinois Unless otherwise indicated all Scripture quotations are from the Authorized / King James Version (KJV) No part of these articles or books may be reproduced without written permission except for brief quotation in books and critical reviews.
For information write
Amazing Grace Ministries Evangelistic Association Inc.
198 Burnett St.
Yorkville, IL 60560
Phone 808-888-0080 -
© All Rights Reserved By Amazing Grace Ministries