~ Click on this link for today's readings ~
2 Chronicles 6:12-8:10 ~ Romans 7:14-8:8
Psalm 18:1-15 ~ Proverbs 19:24-25
Old Testament - Today in Second Chronicles 6 we read about Solomon's dedication of the Temple in Jerusalem!
In Second Chronicles chapter 7 verse 1 today we read - "When Solomon finished praying, fire flashed down from heaven and burned up the burnt offerings and sacrifices, and the glorious presence of the LORD filled the Temple."
New Testament - Romans 7 today has some amazing words about struggling with sin. I imagine that all of us at one point or another have concurred with Paul - and remember this is preacher Paul writing this! - in verses 15 through 17 - "I don't understand myself at all, for I really want to do what is right, but I don't do it. Instead, I do the very thing I hate. I know perfectly well that what I am doing is wrong, and my bad conscience shows that I agree that the law is good. But I can't help myself, because it is sin inside me that makes me do these evil things." These verses get at Original Sin in a big way. We all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. Sin can live inside of us and make us do evil things that we hate doing. What do you suppose - or Whom do you suppose - frees us from this bondage to sin? Jesus. Yes, Christ frees us. How? He paid the penalty on the cross for our sins. And he gives us the free gift of salvation and the Holy Spirit to free us from the bondage of sin. Take a look at these verses again above from Paul. Is sin living inside of you making you do things you hate? Do you want to be free from this slavery to sin? Will you pray to accept Jesus as your savior today and allow him to free you from you bondage to sin? Please do. It's the best decision you will ever make. Please spend a few minutes prayerfully at this website - http://needhim.org/
Bible.org's commentary on today's readings in Romans titled "The War Within" is at this link.
Psalms - Psalm 18 is an amazing one! We'll get it for the next 3 days of readings, which is great. And then comes Psalm 19 which is off the charts awesome! Verse 1 today I love - "I love you, LORD; you are my strength." How often do you tell God that you love him? One thing that one of my former pastors does when he prays publicly, which I absolutely love, is that he closes out just about every prayer with "God we love you. And we pray all of this in the name of your son Jesus Christ." The last line of course is the powerful line! But, that second to last line... is just beautiful. Just telling God that we love him. I'm not sure I tell God that I love him often enough. God may not "need" to hear it. But I think that I need to say it more often. I love you God.
Proverbs - I hope you don't relate too well to Proverbs 19 verse 24... but I'll confess that I have been able to relate to this in my past - "Some people are so lazy that they won't even lift a finger to feed themselves." There were days in my past were I was literally this lazy. What a sad state of affairs. It's hard to say exactly why I was being so lazy - other than one clear reason: I was not in a loving and growing relationship with Jesus. I was living for myself and myself only. So I thought it was fine to sleep and watch TV 24 x 7. What did it matter? Well... it mattered a lot. Being lazy like this is a scary place to be. I think it allows the Enemy to move into our lives in big ways. So - thankfully - as we know from our recent Romans readings, we can be free from our lazy ways! Being in relationship with Jesus has literally cured me of my laziness. Don't get me wrong - I still chill out and rest on occasion - we oughta take a Sabbath day of rest once a week.... but let us not live our lives as couch potatoes! Get in the game of Life!
What verses or insights jumped out for you in today's readings? Please post up in the Comments section below!