Showing Mon Sep 2 - Sun Sep 29, 2019

2017 Series

Monday, September 2, 2019: Jude

Hebrews 3: The Old Testament Jewish people once renounced the authority of God's servant Moses in the desert. There were dire consequences for that rejection. Now at the time of this writing, the Jewish people were under immense pressure to renounce Jesus. How does the writer attempt to dissuade them from abandoning their faith? What does he tell them to do in the midst of this pressure? (Verses 12 and 13)

Hebrews 4: Holding firm to one's faith in Jesus Christ leads to rest. What does rest for a Christian look like? How do scripture and prayer help us to remain in that rest? (Vs 12 and 16)

—Ryan Clark (Trinity, Walden)


Tuesday, September 3, 2019: 1 John 1-2:17

Hebrews 5 What were the jobs of the Old Testament high priests? Jesus is shown here to be the ultimate high priest. How is He similar to the Old Testament priests and how is He unique?

Hebrews 6: When a young person is confirmed in the Lutheran Church, he/she promises to be faithful unto death with God's help. This is not always easy because of ever changing and sometimes extremely difficult circumstances in life. In the midst of these difficulties, how is the Gospel of Jesus Christ an "anchor for your soul" (verse 19), holding you steady?

—Ryan Clark (Trinity, Walden)


Wednesday, September 4, 2019: 1 John 2:18-3:24

Hebrews 7: This chapter speaks at length about the Old Testament encounter between Abraham and the mysterious figure Melchizedek (Genesis 14: 18-20). In Psalm 110:4, David writes that the Messiah will be a priest in the order of Melchizedek. What arguments does the writer to the Hebrews use to confirm this connection?

Hebrews 8: Jesus, our High Priest, came to be the mediator of a new covenant between people and God. This new covenant was instituted through the shedding of Jesus’ blood and superseded the older covenant made with Israel. How is the new covenant “established on better promises” (verse 6), and what are those promises (verses 10-12)?

—Ryan Clark (Trinity, Walden)


Thursday, September 5, 2019: 1 John 4

Hebrews 9: Back in Leviticus 17, God said to Moses, “For the life of a creature is in the blood, and I have given it to you to make atonement for yourselves on the altar; it is the blood that makes atonement for one’s life” (verse 11). In verse 22 of Hebrews 9, it confirms, “…without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness.” How would you use these two verses to explain to someone why Jesus’ coming was absolutely necessary and the greatest gift we could ever receive?

Hebrews 10:

Verse 19 in the NIV begins with the word “Therefore”. As it is said, when you see a “therefore” in the Bible, ask yourself, “What is it THERE FOR?” Because Jesus offered Himself as the once for all sacrifice and our total sin debt is paid in full, “therefore” how do I respond?

1. Verse 22: We draw ______ to God.

2. Verse 23: We hold unswervingly to the _______ we profess.

3. Verse 24: We consider how we might _______ one another on to love and good deeds.

4. Verse 25: We continue to _______ together to ______________ one another, especially as the day of Christ’s return approaches.

—Ryan Clark (Trinity, Walden)


Friday, September 6, 2019: 1 John 5

Chapter 11 of Hebrews is often called the “Hall of Faith”. Many examples from the Old Testament are given of people who had “confidence in what [they] hope for and assurance about what [they] do not see” (verse 1). In verse 6, it says, “without faith, it is impossible to please God”; why do you think trusting in what God says is so important to God that, without it, it is impossible to please Him?

—Ryan Clark (Trinity, Walden)


Saturday, September 7, 2019: 2 John

Hebrews 12: This chapter begins with the words: “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the Pioneer and Perfecter of faith.” Questions to consider: 1) What things hinder you as you are running your race of faith? 2) What motivations does the author to the Hebrews give you in this chapter? Hints: verses 1, 3, 7, etc

Hebrews 13: This chapter includes many imperatives for how to live out our Christian lives of faith. Here is a list of some of the “do’s” of chapter 13:

* showing hospitality to strangers

* remembering the persecuted Christians

* honoring your marriage vows

* being content with what you have

* offering up a sacrifice of praise to the Lord

* sharing with others

* honoring your spiritual leaders

Question to consider: which ones of these are especially hard for you at this time?

Why? In verses 20-21, it says, “ Now may the God of peace…equip you with everything good for doing His will, and may He work in us what is pleasing to him…”. Pray right now that God will help you with those difficult imperatives.

—Ryan Clark (Trinity, Walden)


Monday, September 9, 2019: Hebrews 3-4

In chapter 1, verse 5, Paul writes to the young pastor Timothy, "I am reminded of your sincere faith, which first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice and, I am persuaded, now lives in you also." The message of Jesus Christ is a message that is passed from one person to another, one generation to another. Who did God use to pass it on to you? Was it your parents? your pastor? a friend or co-worker? Take a moment to consider this and then pray a prayer of thanks for God sending you him/her/them. If he/she is still living, you might want to write him/her a quick letter expressing your gratitude for passing on the saving Gospel to you.

—Ryan Clark (Trinity, Walden)


Tuesday, September 10, 2019: Hebrews 5-6

Timothy is warned against false teachers who “have the form of godliness, but deny its power. (Perhaps like the Pharisees in Jesus’ day). What is our safeguard against spiritual smugness and phoniness? (See 2 Tim 3:16-17). Draw on God’s Word to make you “wise unto salvation.”

—Ryan Clark (Trinity, Walden)


Wednesday, September 11, 2019: Hebrews 7-8

In Chapter 4, verse 2, St. Paul tells young pastor Timothy to "Preach the Word". Lutherans have always sought to follow the Reformation motto "Sola Scriptura" (by Scripture alone). In other words, it is not a pastor's or parishioner's job to design, imagine, or follow just any old theology; the power comes from the Word of God alone. In Chapter 3, it tells us God's Word "is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness...". How have you seen each of these aspects of Scripture working in you as you've gone through this Bible reading journey?

One thing I've been taught: ________________________________________________

One way I've been rebuked: _______________________________________________

One way I've been corrected: ______________________________________________

One way that I've been trained: ____________________________________________

—Ryan Clark (Trinity, Walden)


Thursday, September 12, 2019: Hebrews 9-10

Peter writes this letter toward the very end of his life (verse 14). His hope is to remind his followers (verses 12-13, 15) of all God’s promises through the Gospel. To do that, Peter points the readers to the Holy Scriptures, which is God’s Promise Book (verses 19-21). Write down five promises God has made to you as His New Covenant child.

—Ryan Clark (Trinity, Walden)


Friday, September 13, 2019: Hebrews 11

Chapter 2 deals with false teachers and false “gospels”. To consider: how can you recognize false teaching? What false teachings are being taught today in God’s Church? Take a moment to go back to Acts 17: 10-12; how does being like these Bereans help in recognizing true and false teachings?

—Ryan Clark (Trinity, Walden)


Saturday, September 14, 2019: Hebrews 12-13

In Chapter 3, St. Peter writes about Jesus’ second coming. What can you learn about the second coming from this chapter? How is knowing that He is coming soon a motivation for you in your Christian walk?

—Ryan Clark (Trinity, Walden)


Monday, September 16, 2019: 2 Timothy 1-2

Jude, the half-brother of Jesus, writes to Christians warning them about evil people that had "slipped in" among them, were perverting the Gospel, and were leading some astray. Jude tells the faithful to "contend for the faith" (verse 3). We live in a time of many "gospels", many different opinions on spiritual truth. In this time and environment, how do you contend for the true faith? How are the last two verses of Jude a comfort to you as you seek to follow faithfully after Jesus Christ?

—Ryan Clark (Trinity, Walden)


Tuesday, September 17, 2019: 2 Timothy 3

In the Lutheran Church, we look at confessing our sins to God not as a "have to" but as a "get to"! Why is this so? Hint: look at verse 9. Take a couple of minutes and confess your sins to God. Then, practice believing that, because of Jesus, verse 9 is true.

1 John 2:9 states: "Anyone who claims to be in the light but hates a brother or sister is still in the darkness." Remember what Jesus said on Maundy Thursday: "A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another." Ask God to show you if there is someone in your life that you are having a hard time loving. Then, spend a couple of minutes doing a very loving thing: pray for him/her.

—Ryan Clark (Trinity, Walden)


Wednesday, September 18, 2019: 2 Timothy 4

Have you ever asked the question: "God, what do you want me to do?" 1 John 3:23 answers that question: "And this is His command: to believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and to love one another as He commanded us." "To believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ" is to trust that, because Jesus paid my full debt once and for all on the cross, God doesn't hold any of my sins--past, present, or future--against me. Do you believe that? Why is believing that message essential to doing the second part of God's command in verse 23?

—Ryan Clark (Trinity, Walden)


Thursday, September 19, 2019: 2 Peter 1

Verse 10 states: "This is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins". Does this verse give you peace in your spirit? It does me! Why does focusing on God's love for us instead of our love for Him give us peace? How does getting this focus right help us to do the very next verse: "Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another"?

—Ryan Clark (Trinity, Walden)


Friday, September 20, 2019: 2 Peter 2

Verse 6 states: "This is the one who came by water and blood—Jesus Christ. He did not come by water only, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit who testifies, because the Spirit is the truth." Water, Blood, and Spirit are three important themes in Jesus' life and in our lives. Look at these passages and briefly explain how:

Water and Spirit (Matthew 3:16): ___________________________________________

Blood and Water (John 19:34): _____________________________________________

Water and Spirit (Acts 2:38): _______________________________________________

Blood (Luke 22:20): _______________________________________________________

Can you think of others?

—Ryan Clark (Trinity, Walden)


Saturday, September 21, 2019: 2 Peter 3

In verses 1-6, what two words are repeated over and over again? How many times is "truth" used? How many times is "love" used? Both of these traits are necessary in the Christian life.

What does a person look like who has truth but not love?

__________________________________________________________________________ What does a person look like who has love but not truth?

__________________________________________________________________________

—Ryan Clark (Trinity, Walden)


Monday, September 23, 2019: 3 John

John, in his 3rd letter, commends a man named Gaius for showing great hospitality, love, and assistance to a group of traveling preachers. Then, he says in verse 8, "We therefore ought to welcome such, that we may be fellow-workers for the truth." Wo! Did you know that when you help or bless a preacher of the Gospel, God sees you as a "fellow-worker" with him? What are two ways that you can help or bless your pastor this week?

—Ryan Clark (Trinity, Walden)


Tuesday, September 24, 2019: Revelation 1

The Apostle John has been exiled by the Roman government to the Island of Patmos to keep him from having the opportunity to share the message of Jesus. One day he is praying, and he has the encounter that we know now as the Book of Revelation. In Chapter 1, he is approached and spoken to by "one like a Son of Man" (remember Daniel, chapter 7?). Put yourself in John's sandals for a minute: here's a guy who spent 3 years with Jesus and had a very close relationship with Him. But now, having been glorified in Heaven, Jesus is quite a bit different! Looking at how He is described in chapter 1, what to you are the two most striking or meaningful descriptions of His glorified appearance and why?

1. _____________________________________________________________________

2. _____________________________________________________________________

—Ryan Clark (Trinity, Walden)


Wednesday, September 25, 2019: Revelation 2

In the next two chapters, this glorified Jesus is going to speak a message to seven of His churches. Jesus loves His local churches! Notice that it says in verse 1 that Jesus "holds the seven stars in His right hand and walks among the seven golden lamp stands." The stars could signify either heavenly angels (Greek: messengers) or earthly messengers (i.e.pastors) and the lamp stands are the churches. The message that He has for each church body is unique; some of His comments are positive while others are negative. Consider the church in which God has divinely placed you. If the glorified Jesus spoke to your congregation, what would He say? Write down two positive comments He'd have and spend a minute thanking Him for them. Then, consider one critique He might have, write that down, and then dedicate yourself to praying about that each day for the rest of your study of Revelation.

Positives for which to thank Him:

1. _____________________________________________________________________

2. _____________________________________________________________________

Critique about which to pray:

1. _____________________________________________________________________

—Ryan Clark (Trinity, Walden)


Thursday, September 26, 2019: Revelation 3

The last church that our Lord addresses is the church at Laodicea. And what a difficult message they had to hear from Jesus! Jesus calls them "lukewarm"! Ouch! I don't know about you, but I would be tempted to get really down on myself, having heard that rebuke. But, look what Jesus says to them in verses 19-20. Had Jesus given up on this lukewarm gathering of God's people? What does that say about how Jesus deals with us when we are lukewarm in our devotion?

—Ryan Clark (Trinity, Walden)


Friday, September 27, 2019: Revelation 4

This amazing vision that John is experiencing is full of wonderful meaning. To understand it, one needs to remember the old Christian adage: “Let Scripture interpret Scripture”. What do the following descriptions in chapter 4 make you think of? What is God conveying to John in these details?

The Rainbow around the throne: __________________________________________________________

24 Elders (hint: think 12 + 12): ____________________________________________________________

Elders dressed in white with gold crowns: ___________________________________________________

A sea of glass: _________________________________________________________________________

Saturday (9/29( Revelation 5

Chapter 5 is all about the only One who is worthy to unseal the heavenly scroll which describes the future destiny of creation and of God’s people. No one in all of Heaven or Earth is worthy…except One. One of the elders says of Him: “See, the Lion of the tribe of Judah…is able to open the scroll. Then, the very next verses state: “ Then I saw a Lamb, looking as if it had been slain, standing at the center of the throne…He went and took the scroll.” Why is Jesus referred to as a “lion”? Why is He referred to as a “lamb”? How is He both of the these things?

—Ryan Clark (Trinity, Walden)


Saturday, September 28, 2019: Revelation 5

Chapter 5 is all about the only One who is worthy to unseal the heavenly scroll which describes the future destiny of creation and of God’s people. No one in all of Heaven or Earth is worthy…except One. One of the elders says of Him: “See, the Lion of the tribe of Judah…is able to open the scroll. Then, the very next verses state: “ Then I saw a Lamb, looking as if it had been slain, standing at the center of the throne…He went and took the scroll.” Why is Jesus referred to as a “lion”? Why is He referred to as a “lamb”? How is He both of the these things?

—Ryan Clark (Trinity, Walden)