Category Archives: Daily Devotional

Read the New Testament in a year, one chapter a day, five days a week

Day 69/260: Read Mark 1

The life of a leper was a lonely life; they lived outside the general population. They were not permitted to rejoin society until a priest declared them clean.

Jesus demonstrated His power over this dreaded disease when He healed lepers. He told the man in this chapter, “See that you say nothing to anyone; but go your way, show yourself to the priest, and offer for your cleansing those things which Moses commanded, as a testimony to them.”

What did the leper do? “He went out and began to proclaim it freely, and to spread the matter.” He was healed! This was good news! He couldn’t contain himself, but had to tell everyone!

Friends, we have received something much greater than healing from a physical disease. Through the blood of Christ, we have access to God’s grace! We can be healed from spiritual sickness!

Are we as joyful as the leper? Do we show that joy? When we truly understand what Christ has given us, we shouldn’t be able to contain ourselves! Let us spread the good news that Jesus can and will forgive sins!

Memory (Fill in the blanks)

Mark 2:17. When Jesus heard it, He said to them, “Those who are well have no need of a ___________, but those who are sick. I did not come to call the ___________, but sinners, to ___________.”

Pray

Pray for forgiveness and for joyful boldness to share the good news with your friends and neighbors.

Read the New Testament in a year, one chapter a day, five days a week

Day 68/260: Read Romans 16

In Romans 1, Paul noted the reputation of the church at Rome: “your faith is spoken of throughout the whole world” (Romans 1:8). Here, at the close of the letter, Paul writes, “For your obedience has become known to all” (Romans 16:19).

True, Biblical faith produces an obedient response to God’s Word. Paul speaks of Phoebe, calling her “a servant” and stating that she “has been a helper of many and of myself also.” He notes Priscilla, Aquila, and Urbanus are “fellow workers.” He says that Mary, Tryphena, Tryphose, and Persis have labored.

Christianity is a working lifestyle. We are not called to be bench warmers. We are called to labor in the vineyard of the Lord. Jesus said, “The harvest truly is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest” (Matthew 9:37-38).

We are commanded to make disciples (Matthew 28:19-20). A disciple is a follower. Followers are “doers of the word, and not hearers only” (James 1:22).

If Paul wrote a letter to your congregation, would you be identified as a fellow worker, a laborer, a servant?

Memory (Fill in the blanks)

Mark 2:17. When Jesus heard it, He said to them, “Those who are ___________ have no need of a physician, but those who are ___________. I did not come to call the righteous, but ___________, to repentance.”

Pray

Pray for opportunities to work in God’s kingdom and to spread His good news to those around you.

Read the New Testament in a year, one chapter a day, five days a week

Day 67/260: Read Romans 15

God is the God of hope to all who are faithfully obedient. Sadly, there are many trapped in false religions—Islam, Buddhism, Catholicism, and divisive denominationalism. Those who have been deceived by these and other anti-Christian religions possess only a false hope.

Those who enjoy true hope in God, however, can be filled with joy and peace in believing. The joy of the Christian life was announced by the angel unto the shepherds upon the birth of our Lord (Luke 2:10), and peace was prophesied by Zacharias (Luke 1:79).

These blessings of joy and peace allow us to not only have hope, but to abound in hope! There is nothing better than being a Christian because we know what awaits us! The promises of God are grand and glorious for His faithful children.

With hope in His truth, we can confidently sing with the church:

His oath, His covenant His blood
Supports me in the ‘whelming flood;
When all around my soul gives way,
He then is all my hope and stay.

Memory (Copy into a notebook 5-10 times)

Mark 2:17. When Jesus heard it, He said to them, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance.”

Pray

Pray a prayer of thanksgiving for God’s promises that create hope, peace, and joy.

Read the New Testament in a year, one chapter a day, five days a week

Day 66/260: Read Romans 14

Unity is a hallmark of Christianity. We must be in agreement on those things that are revealed in the Holy Scriptures. Jesus prayed for the unity of all believers (John 17:20-21) and Paul wrote by inspiration, “Now I plead with you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.”

This does not mean that our opinions will always align with one another, however. We must be careful that we do not allow our opinions on matters not revealed in God’s Word to become points of contention in the church. Too many congregations have split over matters of expediency. The number of cups used during communion, the use of technology, even the color of the carpet—such things should never cause division in the Lord’s body.

To Paul’s point in this chapter—some ate meat, others did not. When you are with a brother who is opposed to the eating of meat, don’t eat meat. It’s that simple. Let your love for him trump your Christian liberty.

Memory (Read aloud 5-10 times)

Mark 2:17. When Jesus heard it, He said to them, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance.”

Pray

Pray for unity in the Lord’s body, and for humility in your relationship with your brothers and sisters in Christ.

Read the New Testament in a year, one chapter a day, five days a week

Day 65/260: Read Romans 13

Have you paid your taxes yet? Tax time is never a fun time, even if the deadline has been delayed temporarily. But God says we have an obligation to support the government under which we live.

The Jews who lived under Roman rule tested Jesus with the question of taxes. Jesus asked whose image and inscription appeared on their money, then told them, “Render therefore to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s” (Luke 20:25).

Paul repeated the Lord’s command in Romans 13, stating that governing authorities “are appointed by God.” Remember that Paul lived under Roman rule, and both Jews and Christians were often persecuted by the government in the first century. Despite this, he wrote, “For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to evil.”

Abiding by the laws of the land, inasmuch as they do not contradict or cause you to disobey God, is commanded by God. “Therefore you must be subject, not only because of wrath but also for conscience’ sake. For because of this you also pay taxes, for they are God’s ministers attending continually to this very thing. Render therefore to all their due: taxes to whom taxes are due, customs to whom customs, fear to whom fear, honor to whom honor.”

Memory (Recite to a friend without looking)

Romans 10:10. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

Pray

Pray for the governing authorities, that they will allow you to live a godly life in peace.

Read the New Testament in a year, one chapter a day, five days a week

Day 64/260: Read Romans 12

In Romans 12, Paul offers a number of short exhortations to his readers. The King James Version translates the first part of verse 11, “Not slothful in business.” The Christian should be diligent for his employer, but the context this verse has more to do with the business of the church.

We sing a song, “I want to be a worker for the Lord.” Do we mean those words when we sing them? Do we truly want to “be busy every day in the vineyard of the Lord,” or are we just giving lip service?

All disciples are to be actively engaged in the work of the Lord’s church. We should be busy making disciples (Matthew 28:19), encouraging each other (Hebrews 10:24-25), and helping the needy (Galatians 6:10; James 1:27).

We do not always see the fruit of our labors, but we must not give up. If we are mocked or rejected or persecuted by those around us, we keep obeying God (1 Peter 2:19-20). The things we do in the name of the Lord are not done in vain (1 Corinthians 15:58). May we never lag in diligence when it comes to the Lord’s work.

Memory (Fill in the blanks)

Romans 10:10. For with the heart one believes ___________ righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made ___________ salvation.

Pray

Pray for laborers to join you in the vineyard, and pray for the energy to do the Lord’s work in that vineyard.

Read the New Testament in a year, one chapter a day, five days a week

Day 63/260: Read Romans 11

Some have said that the God of the Old Testament is one of wrath, while the God of the New Testament is one of grace. The truth as revealed by Paul, however, that God has always been one of both wrath and love.

“Therefore consider the goodness and severity of God: on those who fell, severity; but toward you, goodness, if you continue in His goodness. Otherwise you also will be cut off.”

The Jews were God’s chosen people to bring the Messiah into the world, but they turned their backs on God’s grace and were cut off. Opportunity was given to the Gentiles to be “grafted in,” but Paul warns against a haughty attitude lest they be cut off as well.

Those who disobey will experience God’s wrath. That is a position no one truly desires. “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God” (Hebrews 10:31).

For those who are obediently faithful, however, the goodness of God is infinite. Remember just a few chapters ago, Paul said, “For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 8:38-39).

Memory (Fill in the blanks)

Romans 10:10. For with the heart one _______________ unto righteousness, and with the mouth _______________ is made unto salvation.

Pray

Pray for the humility to accept God’s grace, understanding the dire situation of the unfaithful.

Read the New Testament in a year, one chapter a day, five days a week

Day 62/260: Read Romans 10

Zeal is important, but it must be coupled with knowledge. Uneducated zeal often leads to much harm. Yet, knowledge without zeal benefits no one either.

What does one need to know? The Scriptures are clear that a knowledge of God is essential. In the first century, before the written Word was completed, the Spirit gave miraculous knowledge to certain individuals. Now that the Scriptures are completed in written form, we no longer need the miraculous. We have the benefit and blessing of access to the New Testament by which we can verify what God has revealed.

God’s plan was a mystery before the revelation. He gave bits and pieces to prophets as He willed, but the full picture was not revealed until the first century after Christ came. Paul wrote to the church in Ephesus that “when you read, you may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ” (Ephesians 3:4). We have the product of the miraculous, so we no longer need the miraculous.

Knowing the Bible is so important because it “is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:16-17). We should zealously study and zealously teach God’s Word!

Memory (Copy into a notebook 5-10 times)

Romans 10:10. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

Pray

Pray for zeal along with the knowledge of the will of God as you read His Word.

Read the New Testament in a year, one chapter a day, five days a week

Day 61/260: Read Romans 9

What a humble, loving man Paul was. His heart ached for his Jewish brethren because they rejected the prophesied Messiah. Do we have the same grief over our neighbors when they disbelieve and disobey the gospel?

There are too many “Christians” who are faithful in regards to worship services, and even live moral lives, but who do not give a second thought to the eternal state of those they claim are their friends. Co-workers, neighbors, even family members may go a lifetime without ever hearing the gospel because no one took the time to talk to them about spiritual things. Oh, they are good, moral people, but they are not carrying out Christ’s Great Commission!

Paul dedicated his life to spreading the gospel. Do you recall all the tribulations he faced in the book of Acts? The Jews were constantly trying to shut him up, throwing him in prison, planning to ambush him and kill him. Did that stop him? What stops us today? Are we afraid of losing friends? Of being made fun of? Of being talked about behind our backs?

What is the eternal state of those who do not obey the gospel? Shouldn’t that motivate us to share the good news with everyone we know?

Memory (Read aloud 5-10 times)

Romans 10:10. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

Pray

Pray for opportunities to share the gospel, and pray for receptive hearts in those who hear the message.

Read the New Testament in a year, one chapter a day, five days a week

Day 60/260: Read Romans 8

Whose side are you on? If you are on God’s side, you’re on the winning side. It doesn’t matter what happens in this life, if you are with God, you will be victorious.

How does one choose to be on God’s side? We must align ourselves with Jesus, obey the gospel so that He will add us to His church. Those who are in Christ, walking according to the Spirit, will be justified, not condemned, when all is said and done. Isn’t that a great blessing?

Romans 8:28 reveals a great promise to God’s followers as well. “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.”

Does that say that everything will be good? No, but everything—good and bad—will work together for good. We will face troubles, we will be persecuted, we will struggle, but if we love God and are among the called, it will be all right. God is using your situation for good.

God will never stop loving you. Nothing can separate His children from His love. We have the freedom to leave Him at any time, but why would we? All of the blessings and promises available in Christ, it would be foolish to walk away. “Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.”

Memory (Recite to a friend without looking)

Romans 6:3. Or do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death?

Pray

Pray a prayer of thanksgiving for the love of God.