Daily Bible Readings:
Monday, June 5. Read Galatians 3:6-14. 1) Was the Law given before or after the Promise was made to Abraham? 2) What is the principle of life for the faithful?
Tuesday, June 6. Read James 2:14-24. 1) What does James say must accompany faith? Why? 2) Why did James mention Abraham?
Wednesday, June 7. Read Acts 7:2-8. 1) How much of the promise that God made did Abraham actually get to see? 2) What did Abraham do to ratify the covenant God was making with him?
Thursday, June 8. Read Hebrews 11:8-12. 1) What did Abraham do when he was called? 2) Where was Abraham’s faith fixed?
Friday, June 9. Read Romans 4:16-25. 1) On what does the Promise rest? 2) What faith hurdles did Abraham have to surmount? 3) Why is Abraham so important to us?
Saturday, June 10. Read Genesis 12:1-9. This is Sunday’s sermon text.
Prayer for the Week:
Lord, we want to be people of the Promise. May it take up residence in our hearts so that there is nothing more important than possessing that promise. Of living according to your kindness and mercy. In service to Jesus who went to the cross because of the PROMISE. In whose name I pray. Amen.
Hymn of the Week:
How Firm a Foundation
by George Keith, 1787
How firm a foundation, ye saints of the Lord,
is laid for your faith in God’s excellent Word!
What more can be said than to you God hath said,
to you who for refuge to Jesus have fled?
“Fear not, I am with thee, O be not dismayed,
for I am thy God, and will still give thee aid;
I’ll strengthen thee, help thee, and cause thee to stand,
upheld by my righteous, omnipotent hand.
“When through the deep waters I call thee to go,
the rivers of sorrow shall not overflow;
for I will be near thee, thy troubles to bless,
and sanctify to thee thy deepest distress.
“When through fiery trials thy pathway shall lie,
my grace, all sufficient, shall be thy supply;
the flame shall not hurt thee; I only design
thy dross to consume, and thy gold to refine.
“The soul that on Jesus hath leaned for repose,
I will not, I will not desert to its foes;
that soul, though all hell should endeavor to shake,
I’ll never, no, never, no, never forsake.”
Devotional Article of the Week:
Unstoppable! ‘Promise, Not Possession’ — Acts 7:2-8
by Phil Ware
Stephen replied to his accusers by speaking about Abraham’s faith.
“Brothers and fathers, listen to me. Our glorious God appeared to our ancestor Abraham in Mesopotamia before he settled in Haran. God told him, ‘Leave your native land and your relatives, and come into the land that I will show you.’ So Abraham left the land of the Chaldeans and lived in Haran until his father died. Then God brought him here to the land where you now live.
“But God gave him no inheritance here, not even one square foot of land. God did promise, however, that eventually the whole land would belong to Abraham and his descendants — even though he had no children yet. God also told him that his descendants would live in a foreign land, where they would be oppressed as slaves for 400 years. ‘But I will punish the nation that enslaves them,’ God said, ‘and in the end they will come out and worship me here in this place.’
“God also gave Abraham the covenant of circumcision at that time. So when Abraham became the father of Isaac, he circumcised him on the eighth day. And the practice was continued when Isaac became the father of Jacob, and when Jacob became the father of the twelve patriarchs of the Israelite nation.”
Eventually! Abraham’s “eventually” was a long time! God made huge promises to Abraham. The LORD even changed his name from Abram to Abraham to emphasize those promises. Abraham lived most of his life waiting. He lived his life in faith, trusting God’s promises while not having anything to possess in the promised new land. God’s promise put Abraham in the “land of in-between.” Still, Abraham trusted God to fulfill his promises, even if the fulfillment seemed impossible and beyond any time he could imagine. Abraham’s faith challenges us to join him as we wait for the glorious promises of God to unfold for us. The difference is that we know God fulfilled his promises to Abraham. We get to see Abraham’s faith rewarded so we can continue in our journey and in our waiting!
Father, I believe in your promises, yet I need your help to grow in my belief. You know that I am stuck in my own “land of in-between” where I must trust beyond what I can see and believe beyond what I know. O Spirit of the living God, strengthen my resolve as I commit to follow Jesus until my faith becomes sight and the Father’s promises are caught up in the glory of their fulfillment. Through the intercession of my Savior, I pray. Amen.
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