June 9, 2011

Today you should read: Psalm 27

I love this Psalm. The band Telecast wrote this Psalm into a song entitled “Psalm 27” It has helped me to memorize most of this Psalm because it is pretty much word for word. David is writing a familiar theme that God is our stronghold, our fortress, and our protector. God defends us against anything and anyone He does not want to harm us. Nothing happens to us apart from God allowing it. Isn’t that assuring? No matter how big the problem or how great the hurdle life may present you, God controls it all and only wants what is best for us and His glory.

The keys to this Psalm are found in verse 4 and 8. David is doing two things here. The first is that he is spending time with God. He talks in verse 4 about being in “the house of the Lord” and being in “His temple.” We have to constantly be in God’s presence. That is why we were made and what our purpose is. How are you doing with this? Have you been spending time with Jesus…not just reading the Bible or a devotional book. Those are good things and certainly part of spending time with God but there is a lot more to it than that. How is your prayer life? How are you doing sharing the gospel? How often do you see God in the small details of life like a flower, a sunset, or a laugh? God doesn’t just want us to be with Him for a few minutes or even an hour or so in the morning, He wants all our time. Spend some time today looking for God in the details.

The second thing we see in is verse 8 as David is seeking God. He is looking to God for answers, for guidance, and for direction. How often do you do this? How often do you spend time in prayer and ask God for His counsel in making decisions? Many times we see this as a last resort or only necessary in dire situations. God wants us to “seek His face” in all situations, even the little things. So, when we have times in our life when we need to make a decision then we need to seek God. When we don’t do this everything usually falls apart or goes south, and we end up going through a lot of junk we didn’t have to. When we do these things we can rest assured that God is our refuge and stronghold. When we are attacked or surrounded then we can be confident in Him.

Posted by: Robbie Byrd

June 8, 2011

Today you should read: Psalm 26

Divine Grace…the foundation of holy living

Today’s Psalm has a significant theme of righteous living. It is not arrogance because it shows its foundation in divine grace! We see a pure heart here, as is evidenced in the prayer of verse 2. This Psalm is a claim to innocence and a cry of vindication, but let’s look deeper today!

Today’s “Walk-a-Way”

God’s grace in our lives is the foundation of righteous living. Titus 2:11-12 shows us that it is God’s grace that teaches us to say no to unrighteousness! We see this same idea in verses 3 and 11. Verse 3 says, “FOR,” meaning the reason I walk with integrity is because of your “steadfast love.” Verse 11 is crazy! Look at the contrast there. It says, “but as for me, I shall walk in MY integrity.” It almost looks like he is determined to pull himself up by his own bootstraps and get it done…but he is not! Right after his claim to walk with integrity, he acknowledges God and the necessity of His grace to do so. WOW!

Is grace motivating you to obey? Is it the absolute foundation of your holy living? Is your obedience in light of Christ? Are you determined, but still humbling yourself to acknowledge that God’s grace is your fuel?

That’s great stuff!! But there is more. It’s a gut-churner. Verse 2 shows how pure His heart for obedience truly is. It says, “prove me O LORD, and try me; test my heart and my mind.” WOW! That is a risky prayer, but it demonstrates a true and genuine desire to live for God.

So how about you? Can you pray that prayer in verse 2? Will you pray it today? Right now? Right after you are done reading it? Pray that today, and remember that God is gracious and faithful; it will fuel you to obey.

Posted by: Sam Cirrincione

June 7, 2011

Today you should read: Psalm 25

“Come on down, you are the next contestant on the Price Is Right!” I remember as a child staying with my grandmother in the summer time, while my mom was at work, watching the “Price is Right” every morning at 11:00 a.m. When the announcer spoke that signature catch phrase, the crowd would go wild and the camera would zoom in on that lucky individual while they danced and high fived their way to one of the podiums for their chance at a prize. I remember thinking how out of their mind people would act, even when the prize was furniture. As a child I wondered why. Was this a life changing moment for them? Was this stuff going to make that big of a difference?

In Psalm 25, we see David wrestling with this very idea. Verse 1-2 says, “ to you, O Lord, I lift up my soul. O my God, in you I trust; let me not be put to shame; let not my enemies exult over me.” The word exult means to rejoice exceedingly. In other words, let me show the world that I exult or rejoice in you more than the world exults or rejoices in false idols. I used the illustration of the Price Is Right because it is an example of typical idolatry that we face on an everyday basis. How many of our friends and family put their hope in a new job, a new car, big vacations, sports teams, finding a mate, and on it goes. I will be so bold to say that we do not match their enthusiasm when it comes to God and our Lord Jesus Christ even though He is the only one who deserves our worship.

Another reason that the world doesn’t see our worship is because we are rejoicing louder over the things of the world then we are for God. If we get gut level honest, the reason our family and friends do not see Christ in us is because we are rejoicing over the same things they are. Why would they trust in the Lord when our lives look no different? I challenge you this week to memorize Psalm 25:4-5 and ask God to give you a heart of worship for Him.

“Make me to know your ways, O Lord; teach me your paths. Lead me in your truth and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation; for you I wait all the day long.”  

Posted by: Chad Wiles

June 6, 2011

Today you should read: Psalm 24

“Who is the King of Glory?” — Psalm 24

“Who do you say that I am? — Jesus in Mark 8:29

Those are the two of the most important questions ever asked. They both find their “yes and amen” in Jesus Christ. Peter responded correctly when he said to Jesus, “You are the Messiah”, the Chosen One… the King of Glory. The author of Hebrews called Jesus a better King than Melchizedek, king of Salem (a name which means “king of righteousness, king of peace”).

Who is the King of Glory? JESUS.

I find it very interesting where this Psalm lies. Many Bible scholars say that Psalm 22, 23, and 24 are a description of Jesus as King. I wholeheartedly embrace this perspective. It points so clearly to the life of Christ:

Psalm 22 depicts the Suffering King who would lay His life down on the cross for us. He would say the bitter words, “My God, My God! Why have you forsaken me?”

In Psalm 23, we see the exalted Christ as Shepherd King, the one who “lays His life down for His sheep” (John 10) and guides His sheep with infinite wisdom to the greenest of pastures: heaven.

In today’s psalm, Jesus is clearly the King of Glory. Verses 1 & 2 point to God as Creator. This, of course is emphasized in Genesis 1, but we find in Colossians 1 and John 1 that Jesus is God the Creator. All things were created by Him and for Him. In verses 3 & 4, the question is posed, “Who can ascend to the holy mountain of God?” Only One with clean hands and a pure heart (read Revelation 5 when you get a chance). Jesus went to God for us with His perfect life and bridged the chasm our sin had caused. Verses 7-10 ask the question we’ve been discussing from the start of today’s post: “Who is the King of Glory?” Look at the description found in those verses…

Strong & mighty, invincible in battle, the Lord of Heavens Armies. Jesus defeated death by death and overcame it in His resurrection. He overcame our sin. He will overcome Satan and all the evil found in this world. He is the strongest and the mightiest.

I hope that today’s passage and this post will challenge you to love your Savior like never before. I pray that it fosters in you a deeper appreciation for what Christ accomplished when nails went through His hands, thorns on His brow, and a spear in His side. He is the King of Glory, and He deserves to be King of your life. Is He?

What verses jumped out at you today? What encouragement do you find from this psalm?

Posted by: Todd Thomas