September 1 2015
TDP: December 9;
Original Broadcast: Tuesday; 2008-12-09;
1 John 3:2-6;
'Beloved, we are God's children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when [Jesus Christ] appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is. And everyone who thus hopes in him purifies himself as he is pure. Everyone who makes a practice of sinning also practices lawlessness; sin is lawlessness. You know that he appeared to take away sins, and in him there is no sin. No one who abides in him keeps on sinning; no one who keeps on sinning has either seen him or known him. (1 John 3:2-6, ESV)
People say confession is good for the soul. The Apostle John might agree. He talks about "purifying ourselves." He means that as we have faith in Jesus, we constantly take our sin to him for forgiveness. Because of Jesus death on the cross, God takes away our sin. He gives us forgiveness. He declares us to be without sin. How do we react to forgiveness? We don't make a practice of sinning. That means we don't continue to sin and pretend we don't need forgiveness. Jesus' forgiveness changes people.
Let us pray: Jesus forgive my sin, help me to put it out of my life. Amen.
Devo ID: 47
August 31 2015
TDP: August 31;
Original Broadcast: Tuesday; 2010-08-31;
1 Kings 17:18-22,24;
'And [the widow] said to Elijah, "What have you against me, O man of God? You have come to me to bring my sin to remembrance and to cause the death of my son!" And he said to her, "Give me your son." And he took him from her arms and carried him up into the upper chamber where he lodged, and laid him on his own bed. And he cried to the LORD, "O LORD my God, have you brought calamity even upon the widow with whom I sojourn, by killing her son?" Then he stretched himself upon the child three times and cried to the LORD, "O LORD my God, let this child's life come into him again." And the LORD listened to the voice of Elijah. And the life of the child came into him again... And the woman said to Elijah, "Now I know that you are a man of God, and that the word of the LORD in your mouth is truth." " (1 Kings 17:18-"22,24 ESV)
"We were doing quite well until you came along. Because of you God remembered my sin, and killed my son!" It's not the attention she wanted. But through Elijah to God gave his life back again. God shows his power over death. It happens again when Jesus is raised from death. He was crucified, dead and buried, thee days in the tomb, but walked out fully restored to life. What Jesus did in his life, death on the cross, and resurrection is God's promise to us. When we believe what Jesus did, our sins are forgiven. Our life will "come into" us again. We will live forever free of sin and death.
Let us pray: Lord of life and death, comfort us in our time of death with the promise of resurrection in you. Amen.
Devo ID: 177
August 28 2015
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TDP: December 8;
Original Broadcast: Monday; 2008-12-08;
'On this mountain the Lord of hosts will make for all peoples a feast of rich food, a feast of well-aged wine, of rich food full of marrow, of aged wine well refined. And he will swallow up on this mountain the covering that is cast over all peoples, the veil that is spread over all nations. He will swallow up death forever; and the Lord God will wipe away tears from all faces, and the reproach of his people he will take away from all the earth, for the Lord has spoken. (Isaiah 25:6-8, ESV)
We have all been there, tears streaming down our faces as we mourn a death. Death swallows up our relationships, our accomplishments and our joy. Isaiah says death as a covering. All we hope to be and do is stolen away. God hates death even more than we do. He has something better in mind, a feast. Jesus Christ swallows up death in his death. He was crucified, dead and buried, covered up. But it can't hold him. He throws death off and lives. Your sins are forgiven by Jesus' death and resurrection. In faith, you too, will pass through death to life, and joy and no more tears.
Let us pray: Dearest Jesus, give me joy even in the face of death. Amen.
Devo ID: 46
August 27 2015
TDP: December 5;
Original Broadcast: Friday; 2008-12-05;
2 Peter 2:1-3;
'But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction. And many will follow their sensuality, and because of them the way of truth will be blasphemed. And in their greed they will exploit you with false words. Their condemnation from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep. (2 Peter 2:1-3, ESV)
The Apostle Peter gives warning about false teachers in the church. It is fair warning both to them and to us. There are few things more dangerous. St. Peter says it will always be a threat, but God promises judgment for those responsible. In the mean time we need to watch. We can look for what Peter says is the telltale sign. They deny, the Master, Jesus Christ. Like in the days of Peter, today's false teachers are subtle. They make everything in the church seem more important the forgiveness of sins won by Jesus' death on the cross. Watch out! Hold your preachers accountable to preach Christ crucified to you.
Let us pray: Dearest Master, Jesus, give us faithful preachers to point us to your cross for our forgiveness. Amen.
Devo ID: 45
August 26 2015
TDP: December 4;
Original Broadcast: Thursday; 2008-12-04;
2 Peter 1:16-21;
'For we did not follow cleverly devised myths when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty. For when he received honor and glory from God the Father, and the voice was borne to him by the Majestic Glory, "This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased," we ourselves heard this very voice borne from heaven, for we were with him on the holy mountain. And we have something more sure, the prophetic word, to which you will do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts, knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone's own interpretation. For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit. (2 Peter 1:16-21, ESV)
Peter saw the majesty of Jesus Christ. He saw it in his daily activity, as he healed and preached. He saw it when Jesus glowed like the sun and God spoke out of a cloud. He saw it when Jesus hung dying on the cross. And he saw it when Jesus was raised again to life. Jesus is the one who makes the bible much more than "cleverly devised myths." It is the account of God's salvation in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. It is the promise of sins forgiven and eternal life to all who believe. God stands behind each and every word. You can trust it as true.
Let us pray: Lord keep us steadfast in Your Word; Curb those who by deceit or sword Would wrest the kingdom from Your Son And bring to naught all He has done. Amen.
Devo ID: 44
August 25 2015
TDP: December 3;
Original Broadcast: Wednesday; 2008-12-03;
1 Peter 5:6-11;
'Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world. And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you. To him be the dominion forever and ever. Amen. (1 Peter 5:6-11, ESV)
Satan does exist. He is real. Saint Peter's picture is frightening, the lion on the prowl. How do we resist the teeth of this lion? It would be impossible for us if it were not for Jesus Christ. Peter says, cast all your anxieties on Him. Suffering will come. It comes, in fact, to all believers everywhere. But Satan has lost his teeth. Jesus has defeated him. Satan's real threat is permanent suffering. But Jesus has canceled that. Jesus suffered the eternal suffering of hell on the cross. The forgiveness of the cross means that Satan can't threaten you with that. All he can do is temporary, and only what God allows. "Humble yourself" and "Cast all your anxieties on Him." God's promise to you is that your suffering will end. Whatever suffering He allows Satan to inflict will only make your faith stronger.
Let us pray: Heavenly Father, I give my anxieties to you. Protect me from Satan. Amen.
Devo ID: 43
August 24 2015
TDP: December 2;
Original Broadcast: Tuesday; 2008-12-02;
1 Peter 4:7-11;
'The end of all things is at hand; therefore be self-controlled and sober-minded for the sake of your prayers. Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins. Show hospitality to one another without grumbling. As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God's varied grace: whoever speaks, as one who speaks oracles of God; whoever serves, as one who serves by the strength that God supplies-in order that in everything God may be glorified through Jesus Christ. To him belong glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen. (1 Peter 4:7-11, ESV)
Saint Peter says love covers a multitude of sins. But he doesn't leave us to guess about what that means. He says, serve each other without grumbling. How easy it is to complain when we are called upon to serve. We remember when our service was taken for granted or rejected. How often people take advantage of us when we offer to serve! Serving without grumbling is the sure sign of true love. It covers a multitude of sin. Peter doesn't tell us to serve only those who deserve help. He doesn't say serve only when we are recognized for our service. He says to serve as if the end of everything is at hand. We are to serve as if there is no tomorrow. We are to give ourselves completely in service. That's how Jesus is in the picture. He serves that way. He gives everything. He loves completely. His death on the cross is true love that covers all our sins. In response to Jesus we service without complaint, showing His love to everyone we serve.
Let us pray: Dearest Jesus, lead me to serve completely as you do. Amen.
Devo ID: 42
August 21 2015
TDP: December 1;
Original Broadcast: Monday; 2008-12-01;
'Again the Lord spoke to Ahaz, "Ask a sign of the Lord your God; let it be deep as Sheol or high as heaven." But Ahaz said, "I will not ask, and I will not put the Lord to the test." And he said, "Hear then, O house of David! Is it too little for you to weary men, that you weary my God also? Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. (Isaiah 7:10-14, ESV)
King Ahaz thinks he's being wise, he's not. He is surrounded by enemies. God says they won't win. Pick any sign and God will show he is faithful. Ahaz says no. God gives one anyway. The name Immanuel means "God with us." He will be with the foolish king. The enemies of God's people won't succeed. But God is always more faithful than we can imagine. "God with us," is also the name of God's son who comes to take away the sin of the world. God's promise to Ahaz is his promise to us. God comes personally, in human flesh, to be our Savior. God born in a manger. God walking our roads. God eating our food. God living our life and yes, dying our death. Sin is so serious that only "God with us" can fix it. Jesus Christ is God with us. His life death and resurrection bring us forgiveness of our sin.
Let us pray: Come, Thou long expected Jesus, Born to set thy people free; From our fears and sins release us; Let us find our rest in Thee; Israel's strength and consolation, Hope of all the earth Thou art, Dear desire of every nation, Joy of ev'ry longing heart. Amen. (LSB 338,1)
Devo ID: 41
August 20 2015
TDP: November 28;
Original Broadcast: Friday; 2008-11-28;
1 Peter 1:13-19;
'Therefore, preparing your minds for action, and being sober-minded, set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, since it is written, "You shall be holy, for I am holy." And if you call on him as Father who judges impartially according to each one's deeds, conduct yourselves with fear throughout the time of your exile, knowing that you were ransomed from the futile ways inherited from your forefathers, not with perishable things such as silver or gold, but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without blemish or spot. (1 Peter 1:13-19, ESV)
Once again God tells us not to sin. It isn't easy to do, but God calls us to act like his children. You've heard this at home, Dad says, "show them who's son you are." Be holy as your Father is holy. Don't sin. But we fall short. We act according to our own desires. We think we belong to ourselves. Sin leaves no room for good and no room for God. God judges sin fairly with punishment. But we can be different. God is our Father. We were purchased for him by Jesus Christ. He gave his holy and precious blood for us. His death is worth more than any treasure. We are God's not our own. So, be prepared, live every day a child of God, remembering Jesus and his cross and death for you.
Let us pray: Help us to do this dear Father in Heaven. Amen.
Devo ID: 40
August 19 2015
TDP: November 27;
Original Broadcast: Thursday; 2008-11-27;
'Wash yourselves; make yourselves clean; remove the evil of your deeds from before my eyes; cease to do evil, learn to do good; ... "Come now, let us reason together, says the Lord: though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool. (Isaiah 1:16-18, ESV)
Red is the color that everyone notices. In the old days barns were painted red because it was the cheapest color to make. But as you went around the country-side the farm places were easy to find. The first thing you learn in a car is "Red means stop." Red is the color of warning and danger. Wild animals avoid it. Red is the color of blood and death. God tells us red is the color of sin. This passage is a warning then. Sin is noticeable. Sin is dangerous. Sin is easy to find. Stop sinning, God says. Wash yourselves clean! I see into your heart. I know your sin. Sin is dangerous. With God, sin deserves death and punishment. But with God there is always a promise, too. Though your sins are obvious, you will be clean. They are red but they will be made white. God is always talking his plan to take care of sin in Jesus. Sin is death and bloodshed, crimson and scarlet. The danger of death surrounds it. The red blood of Jesus changes everything. Sin is made white like snow and wool. Jesus death on the cross gets the red out. Jesus death takes your sin away. Life is better without it.
Let us pray: Thank you Jesus for removing sin from me. Amen.
Devo ID: 39