Hypocrisy is a charged often leveled against Christians. “How can you say you believe ‘x’ and still do ‘y’?”, the unbeliever asks. While the merits of this claim probably deserve an entire devotional on their own, the implication is that these hypocrites are unqualified – unqualified to be taken seriously, unqualified to speak the truth of the Bible, even unqualified to be a child of God. If someone hears this charge, particularly the latter one, with enough repetition, they may actually start to believe it. What exactly qualifies someone to become a Christian, or to at least claim that they are?
Believe it or not, the list of qualifications is … more
Today, we are looking at an interesting passage; it reflects a cultural issue within the early church, but the principle is as relevant today as it was then.
17 Only let each person lead the life that the Lord has assigned to him, and to which God has called him. This is my rule in all the churches. 18 Was anyone at the time of his call already circumcised? Let him not seek to remove the marks of circumcision. Was anyone at the time of his call uncircumcised? Let him not seek circumcision. 19 For neither circumcision counts for anything nor uncircumcision, but keeping the commandments of God. 20 Each one should remain in the condition in which he was called. 21 Were you a bondservant … more
I was recently asked what kind of God tells His people to kill their intransigent children. I knew the answer, but it’s a long one, so I decided to move that over here, because it’s an interesting study on one of the more hard-to-believe rules that God set out for the Israelites. This command is found in Deuteronomy 21:18-21.
18 “If a man has a stubborn and rebellious son who will not obey the voice of his father or the voice of his mother, and, though they discipline him, will not listen to them, 19 then his father and his mother shall take hold of him and bring him out to the elders of his city at the gate of the place where he lives, 20 and they shall say to the … more
“Tan!” “I like it on the hook by the door!” “I’m going to Kalamazoo for 32 days!” These are some tame samples of some of the nonsensical things you might have seen on Facebook over the past few years, all coming back to breast cancer awareness. Other diseases have their specific “awareness” advocates as well.
I mused on someone else’s status that I wish I needed a game to make me aware of cancer. In the past few years, I have known people who have had to fight breast, liver, kidney, prostate, lung, and bladder cancer; some have won, some did not, and others are still fighting. There are two big reasons that I’m so aware of … more
My wife and I are currently reading the book Family Driven Faith by Dr. Voddie Baucham, Jr. Some friends of ours are fans of Dr. Baucham, and the book has, so far, been outstanding. (We’ve made it to chapter 4.)
In doing research on Dr. Baucham and his ministry, I learned that he is the current pastor of Grace Family Baptist Church in Houston, Texas, and I also found the church’s sermon feed on SermonAudio.com. I’ve been listening for the past several weeks, as he and Elder Stephen Bratton have been preaching a series on Romans. (That alone is cool to me; I’ve never seen two people share a series before.) When they arrived to Romans 13:1-7, they started a 4-sermon … more
This has been an interesting year. I have been sticking with the 1-year reading plan (for the most part, but catching up when I fall behind). It’s been very enjoyable, but I almost feel like the pace is too fast to really let things sink in. As I read, I’ve been making notes of certain verses that stand out, places to which I want to return and dig deeper. Additionally, the Lord has provided some paid work (hallelujah!), which has taken up some of the time I would have used to formulate coherent devotionals. Don’t take the lack of posts as a sign that this site has been abandoned; there’s a lot kicking around in my mind that I hope to unpack and explore in the next … more
On the suggestion of a friend, I subscribed to the Daily Audio Bible (DAB) podcast. In this podcast, Brian Hardin reads the Bible through each year – 2010 is the fifth year. It’s been a blessing to me to listen to God’s Word, as well as enjoy some of his comments as well. (I’ll have to own up to skipping a good bit of the commentary, especially when I was trying to catch up a few days.) It was great to be able to listen while I did other things; however, this was a mixed blessing. I found that I would sometimes get distracted with the “other” thing that I was doing, and would mentally check out of the podcast. During one of these distracted times, I felt … more
Category: General Info
I’ve been thinking a good bit about where this blog is headed, and I thought I’d share these thoughts with you.
When I started this, I had what turned out to be very lofty goals for it – a devotional week-in, week-out, well-thought-out and based on what I was currently studying in the Bible. With other responsibilities and activities that I have, I simply have not been able to meet that goal. This isn’t to say that the goal isn’t a good one; I just have fallen short of it. Weekly devotions will remain the goal (and the name), but there will be a change. While Wednesday at 7am will remain the unofficial schedule, each devotion will appear when I have completed … more
Category: General Info
Today, our series “The 3:16s of the New Testament” reaches its other bookend (the end if you’ve been reading along, the start if you’re looking at it once it’s done), as we look at Matthew 3:16, presented here in context with verse 17.
16 After Jesus was baptized, He went up immediately from the water. The heavens suddenly opened for Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming down on Him. 17 And there came a voice from heaven:
This is My beloved Son.
I take delight in Him!— Matthew 3:16-17
This story is also covered in Luke 3:16, which we covered in . This week, though, I’d like to focus on the One who was baptized & … more
This week brings us to Mark 3:16 (shown below through verse 19).
16 He appointed the Twelve: To Simon, He gave the name Peter;
17 and to James the son of Zebedee, and to his brother John, He gave the name “Boanerges” (that is, “Sons of Thunder” );
18 Andrew; Philip and Bartholomew; Matthew and Thomas; James the son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus; Simon the Zealot,
19 and Judas Iscariot, who also betrayed Him.— Mark 3:16-19
Here, Mark lists those that Jesus called out to be His disciples while He was performing His earthly ministry. Looking at who He chose will give us a good idea of the type of person He used, and help us see the type of person He will … more
This week brings us to Luke 3:16, where the apostle John is preaching.
16 John answered them all, “I baptize you with water, but One is coming who is more powerful than I. I am not worthy to untie the strap of His sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.— Luke 3:16
Today we’ll take a quick look at baptism. While many different religions use baptism to symbolize many different things, we’ll look at how it was used in the New Testament around the life of Jesus. In this passage, Luke is summarizing John the Apostle’s ministry. John has called out in the wilderness, worn his animal skins, eaten locusts, and called the people a bunch of … more
This week, we come to the most popular 3:16 of them all. It’s a verse so popular, people can write just the reference on a piece of poster board, and those seeing it know exactly what they’re trying to say. Yes, today’s 3:16 comes from the book of John.
16 For God loved the world in this way: He gave His One and Only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life.— John 3:16
This verse is part of the larger context of Nicodemus’s visit to Jesus at night, described in John 3:1-21. While we won’t recount that story in detail, it is interesting to note that John 3:3 is the source of the term “born again,” … more
This week brings us to Acts 3:16.
16 By faith in His name, His name has made this man strong, whom you see and know. So the faith that comes through Him has given him this perfect health in front of all of you.— Acts 3:16
This is Peter speaking to people who had assembled after he and John had healed a lame man (Acts 3:1-16). This type of healing, along with many other things described in the book of Acts, can be a bit contentious among Christians. Is God still in the healing business? Does He still use people like Peter and John to speak His healing? And what role do doctors play in healing – if I took a pill and got better, it must have been the doctor, right? The short … more
Today we hit a Scripture so tough, it took me two years to write about it. It’s Romans 3:16 – see if this isn’t the most uplifting verse you’ve heard all week…
16 ruin and wretchedness are in their paths,— Romans 3:16
We’ll definitely need some more context – let’s look beginning with verse 10, going through verse 20.
10 as it is written:
There is no one righteous, not even one; 11 there is no one who understands, there is no one who seeks God. 12 All have turned away, together they have become useless; there is no one who does good, there is not even one. 13 Their throat is an open grave; they deceive with their tongues. … more
Welcome to version 2.0 of Daniel’s Weekly Devotions! I’ve cleaned out the cobwebs, put on a fresh coat of paint, and gotten it ready to return to being an active part of the Internet.
The first change is the URL. This used to be under my personal blog, which made configuration more challenging. The new URL is devotions.summershome.org. I’ve implemented redirection for all the old category and post links, as well as the RSS feed. Anything that this doesn’t catch will be redirected here to the main page. If you run into a link that didn’t redirect the way you thought it should, please let me know.
The next change is the theme. The previous theme was based on … more
Category: General Info
Regular devotions will resume in December. :) more
Category: General Info
Today’s passage comes from 1 Corinthians 3:16-17.
16 Don’t you know that you are God’s sanctuary and that the Spirit of God lives in you? 17 If anyone ruins God’s sanctuary, God will ruin him; for God’s sanctuary is holy, and that is what you are.— 1 Corinthians 3:16-17
This passage is short, sweet, and to the point. Before it, Paul is explaining to the Corinthian church that Jesus is the foundation of His church, no matter who actually brings the message (verses 5-15); and he follows up these verses by instructing them on the folly of the world’s wisdom (verses 18-23). So, let’s look at these two verses, and other Scriptures that … more
This week, let’s look at 2 Corinthians 3:16. This is a beautiful verse!
16 but whenever a person turns to the Lord, the veil is removed.— 2 Corinthians 3:16
In this passage, Paul is illustrating the access that we now have to the Lord by contrasting it with Moses’s encounter with God when he received the Ten Commandments, along with plans for the Tabernacle and other laws. Here is the description of this from Exodus:
18 Then Moses said, “Please, let me see Your glory.”
19 He said, “I will cause all My goodness to pass in front of you, and I will proclaim the name Yahweh before you. I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and I will have … more
This week, we’ll take a look at Galatians 3:16. It is below, in the context of verses 10-18. In this passage (and all of Galatians 3), Paul is writing to clear up confusion. The Galatian church had been deceived by legalistic teachers who emphasized following the law. In writing this, Paul refers directly or indirectly to several Old Testament verses to illustrate how Christ has fulfilled the promise made to Abraham.
10 For all who [rely on] the works of the law are under a curse, because it is written: Cursed is everyone who does not continue doing everything written in the book of the law. 11 Now it is clear that no one is justified before God by the law, because the righteous … more
This week, let’s look at Ephesians 3:16 (through verse 19).
16 [I pray] that He may grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man, 17 and that the Messiah may dwell in your hearts through faith. [I pray that] you, being rooted and firmly established in love, 18 may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and width, height and depth, 19 and to know the Messiah’s love that surpasses knowledge, so you may be filled with all the fullness of God.— Ephesians 3:16-19
God is omnipotent. If you’ve grown up in church, you’ve probably heard that so much that its meaning is … more
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