From: December 30, 2018
Scripture for today: Malachi 1:1-2:17; Revelation 21:1-27; Psalm 149:1-9; Proverbs 31:10-24
From: December 30, 2017
John saw the “holy city,” the “New Jerusalem,” come down. This is the very place that Christ went to prepare, saying, “In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you?And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also.” (John 14:2-3).
He was following the same pattern as any Jewish groom would in the 1st century. Marriages had two ceremonies in those days: First, the betrothal ceremony and then, the wedding ceremony. The groom and his father would pay the agreed upon bride price at the betrothal ceremony. Then, the groom would return to his father’s house to prepare a place for his bride, usually adding on a room or two to his father’s house. Finally, the groom would go to get his bride and bring her to his father’s house on their wedding day, celebrating with a great banquet.
The “New Jerusalem” is the place that the Lord Jesus has prepared for us! The Father has already paid the price for our betrothal when He sent Jesus to die for us. Jesus has risen and returned to His Father’s house to prepare a place for us. Very soon He will return to take us to be with Him.
As my sweet mother used to sing, “I’m bound for that city, God’s home, that bright city. O yes I am!”
“I’m Bound for That City” – Sung by Wilda Dillon Combs
From: December 30, 2016
John heard a voice from the throne of heaven make this promise to the Bride of Christ, the New Jerusalem come down, which is the Church. Most of us remember our mothers wiping away our tears and gently replacing them with a kiss of her lips and a whispered comfort in our ears. The Lord will do this for His children, yet not only wiping away their tears, but actually taking away the death and pain which caused them. The former things will pass away. The sinfulness of humanity which brought suffering and death into God’s creation will be no more. “Behold!” The One seated on the throne declares, “I am making all things new!”
As you look back on this past year and look forward to the new, meditate on these things. Let Jesus wipe away your tears and whisper life in your ears.
From: December 30, 2015
John saw a city of pure gold “descending out of heaven from God.” This city is the New Jerusalem, a city not made by human hands (2 Cor. 5:1). This city is the Church, the Bride of the Lamb come down from heaven to a new earth. This is the “Father’s house” where Jesus ascended to “prepare a place for us” (John 14:2-3). There will be no “death, sorrow, nor crying” from pain in this city, for God will “wipe away every tear” and “make all things new.” The eternal destiny for those who believe in Jesus is not an existence on some immaterial, ethereal plane, but one where believers with resurrected, glorified bodies may dwell. It is a city prepared for those whose name is written in the “Lamb’s Book of Life.”
From: December 30, 2014
Do you ever question God’s love? The exiled Jews that had returned to Jerusalem did. They were happy to be home again, yet they were still under Persian rule and the former glory of their city was a mere memory. They wondered, how has God “loved us?” God’s reply through His prophet Malachi is both startling and mysterious: “I loved Jacob,” but hated his twin brother Esau. In other words, God chose to love them with an exclusive love long before they were even born. Like a groom who chooses his bride, rejecting all others, so God chose Jacob (Israel) and rejected Esau. It is God’s choosing to love us that makes it possible for us to respond. God’s love initiates. As Jesus told His disciples, “You did not choose me, but I chose you” (John 15:16). When Paul explained how God has loved us to the Romans, he wrote, “God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Rom. 5:8). How has God loved us? By choosing to love us when we were unlovable.
From: December 30, 2013
It is getting harder and harder to find one, but I did. How? I prayed like crazy and decided to look for a woman based on the “3 Ms.” What are the “3 Ms?” First, “Master” – make Christ your master and look for a woman that has done the same. Second, “Mission” – decide to know and follow the quest that God has given you (a godly woman soon tires of a man who makes her his mission rather than a God-sized dream). And finally, “Mate” – now that you have made Christ your Master and have answered His call to Mission, you are ready to find a mate. Just make sure she has the same Master and is excited to join you on His mission before you make her your Mate.
Following this strategy (Pray like crazy and Follow the “3Ms”) I found a little girl up in the hills of Virginia named Robin. I don’t know if they have any more up there. I may have gotten the last one.
From: December 30, 2012
God was displeased with the priests and people of Israel because their hearts didn’t line up with their worship. He told them to stop bringing blemished offerings and breaking their marriage vows, for these exposed their true idolatrous hearts. Heaven forbid that God would feel this way about our worship, that He would want us to lock the church’s doors until we can enter again in repentance. As 2012 winds down, let us ask God to examine our hearts and strengthen us to live wholeheartedly for Him. Let’s fling the church doors wide open in 2013!
From: December 30, 2011
Marriage is sacred. God sets it apart as an expression of His Trinitarian Oneness and as the means for raising godly children. Individuals and society experiment with marriage at their own risk. God is passionate about His purpose for marriage.