April 18, 2016

Today you should read: Exodus 32

Submitting To God’s Timing

Today, we see God’s people grow impatient with God’s timing.

What happens?  And what can we learn?

Today’s “Walk-a-Way:”

I think we see 4 significant things in the first verse of this chapter:

  1.  God’s People grew impatient when God did not act in their timing

“When the people saw that Moses delayed to come down from the mountain…” (1a)

  1.  Therefore they tried to take matters into their own hands

“…the people gathered themselves together to Aaron and said to him…” (1b)

  1.  In order to ensure their future

“…Up, make us gods who shall go before us…” (1c)

  1.  And by doing so, they doubted the significance of what God had done in the past, and they doubted His plan for their future.

“…As for this Moses, the man who brought us up out of the land of Egypt, we do not know what has become of him” (1d)

Here are some questions and application to ponder today.   These correspond to each number above:

  1.  In what ways is God not acting in your timing?  How are you currently responding towards God?  Remember, God doesn’t work in our timing, He works in His, and we should respond in heart-committed trust.  
  1.  How are you currently trying to take matters into your own hands?  How have you tried to get other people to buy into your plan?  Remember, when God doesn’t give you what you want, you will be tempted to control it yourself, but we should deny the temptation to fearfully gain control.  
  1.  How have you been trying to ensure your own future?  How have you made idols in the process?  Remember, when we try to take control, we will always make idols.  We should repent of the idols we’ve made and trust God.
  1.  How have you been doubting God’s past providence in your life? How have you been doubting God’s plan for your future?  Remember, God shows us His faithfulness in the past that we might trust in His faithfulness for our future.  We should meditate on how God has been faithful in the past and allow it to give us confidence about our future.  

By: Sam Cirrincione


April 16, 2016

Today you should read: Exodus 31

If you had a snapshot-description of you, presented in a pretty important book of the Bible, what would you want it to say? Humble? Hardworking? Good parent? Evangelist? Servant? All of those are great, but I would gladly take what the Bible says about Bezalel. It says he was “filled with the Spirit of God.” That’s a pretty awesome epitaph.

The chapter goes on to talk about a variety of things: finish the tent of meeting, the ark of the testimony, the mercy seat (verses 1-11). Then, the Lord gave further instruction regarding the Sabbath (12-18).

I want to share something with you that has profoundly impacted me in the area of simple obedience. That is what I see in Bezalel & Oholiab. Their roles required faithfulness in the little things. This excerpt from Jason Young illustrates the ripple-effect power of this idea.

Have you ever asked yourself, “What could I possibly do that matters?” You are not alone. I have asked myself that question more than once. Let me introduce you to seven people who were ALL influenced by another person.

It all started with a guy from Boston.

His name… EDWARD KIMBALL led a small group at his church when he met a challenging teenager. That seventeen-year-old young man was poorly educated and prone to outbursts of anger and profanity.

His name…DWIGHT L. MOODY. He became the “greatest” evangelist of the nineteenth century. He was instrumental in the life-change experienced by a young man.

His name… F.B. MEYER. He became a minister. He mentored a young man.

His name… J.W. CHAPMAN. He became a pastor and evangelist. He also started an outreach to professional baseball players. There he influenced a young man.

His name… BILLY SUNDAY. He became one of the greatest evangelists in the first two decades of the twentieth century. He influenced a young man who eventually came back to work with him.

His name… MORDECAI HAM. He became a preacher. He was preaching when a teenager responded to the invitation “to give your life to Jesus Christ.”

His name… BILLY GRAHAM. He has influenced more people than any other preacher in history. He remains a trusted confidant to presidents and other key influencers.

See, simple obedience matters. few of us probably knew of Edward Kimball, yet we have all heard of Billy Graham. But Billy Graham’s spiritual family tree goes back to a faithful Sunday School teacher, obeying God’s call to lead his class. I can only imagine the list of people influenced by Bezalel & Oholiab, two men doing God’s work according to God’s instructions.

I pray that what is said of them could be said of me.

By: Todd Thomas

April 15, 2016

Today you should read: Exodus 30

If you are a person that likes to highlight in your Bible, I encourage you to read through our passage today and mark every time you see the word “holy”. It occurs 15 times in our passage, and is a major theme in the book of Exodus and the rest of the books of Law as well. What is holiness? Dr. Bruce Ware puts it this way:

“To say that God is holy is to say that He is eternally separate and distinct from all impurity. The term holiness in Hebrew, qodesh, has the notion of separation, of uniqueness, of one-of-kindness.”

The holiness of God is something we must focus on here because it is the reason that He has given the Israelites all of these rules to follow in the first place. God is a God who is separate from us; he is pure in all of his essence. We are dirty; our sin is what has separated us from God.

God in his grace gave the people of Israel sacrifices and altars to purify themselves before Him. These sacrifices and altars find their completion in the person of Jesus Christ, who has given us the ultimate purification through His sacrifice on the cross.

God has commanded us to be holy as he is holy. Praise God that He has given us the Holy Spirit through Christ to make us holy! You cannot grow in holiness on your own merit just as you can’t do enough to save yourself in the first place. Growing in holiness is the work of the Holy Spirit. But often, we are unaware that there are areas of our lives that we have not given over to the Holy Spirit’s control. God wants all of our lives to be for His glory; therefore, we have an obligation to continually keep watch on our hearts and the places that they are weak, asking God to transform us more and more into the image of Jesus Christ.

What is an area of your life that you have been keeping for yourself instead of allowing God to purify? Will you confess your pride to God today and seek the cross?

The forgiveness offered from the cross is our motivation towards holiness.

By: Graham Withers

April 14, 2016

Today you should read: Exodus 29

Today’s passage is a difficult passage to relate to our lives today. The idea of Priests, offerings of grain, wine, bulls and lambs isn’t something that we see in our current church culture. If any religion wanted to practice animal offerings in America, they would get hunted down by PETA. Although it may seem difficult this passage is very rich with truths that apply to us. The big idea that I want you to get today from our passage is this:

God desires to dwell among His people and be near to them!

All the sacrifices and rituals that we see in the Old Testament were designed to cleanse the people and make the tent of meeting Holy. That way God was able to come near to them and speak to them through the priests. However, the reason why we call it the Old Testament is because because it is the Old way of doing things. Our passage today points us to the New covenant through the gospel in the New Testament that has permanently allowed God to dwell among those who believe in Him.

But when Christ appeared as a high priest of the good things that have come, then through the greater and more perfect tent (not made with hands, that is, not of this creation) he entered once for all into the holy places, not by means of the blood of goats and calves but by means of his own blood, thus securing an eternal redemption. For if the blood of goats and bulls, and the sprinkling of defiled persons with the ashes of a heifer, sanctify for the purification of the flesh, how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without blemish to God, purify our conscience from dead works to serve the living God.  (Hebrews 9:11-14)

If you have a relationship with God through faith in Jesus Christ then you are cleansed and purified by Jesus’ blood. So this means that you are Holy and set apart, not because you are sinless but because Jesus blood has paid for that sin. So, God not only welcomes you in to his family He draws near to you in the most intimate way. He literally dwells in your heart (The Holy Spirit) and you become the temple of the living God. He is with you everyday for the rest of your life to guide you, convict you and change you into the image of Jesus.

Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body. (1 Corinthians 6:19-20)

What kind of temple are you? Do you reflect the glory of God by your words and actions?

By: Chad Wiles