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    Quarantine Devotional – Week 10

    1 John 2:15-17, The Love of the World “And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever.” ~ 1 John 2:17 Throughout the story of Scripture and redemptive history (God’s gracious actions on behalf of his people), one thing is sure: The love of the world and the things of this world will be the downfall of God’s people. As Israel was preparing to enter the land of Canaan, God pronounced upon them blessings for obedience to his law along with curses for disobedience. Specifically, he charged Israel to be careful not to adopt the customs or the idols of…

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    Quarantine Devotional – Week 9

    Psalm 119:105-107 “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.I have sworn an oath and confirmed it, to keep your righteous rules.I am severely afflicted; give me life, O LORD, according to your word.” These words are a recognition of the light and truth of God’s word in a dark and deceptive world. They are a commitment on behalf of the psalmist and God’s people to embrace God’s covenant promises from the heart come “persecution, famine, nakedness, danger, or sword,” to quote the Apostle Paul. All of these dangers were all too real in this ancient culture, and though we have had our share…

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    Quarantine Devotional – Week 8

    1 John 2:7-11, A New Old Commandment “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: Just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” ~ Jesus, John 13:34-35 John had been loved. He had been loved so much by Jesus, that he described himself as “the disciple whom Jesus loved” (John 21:20). John was not the only disciple whom Jesus loved. He was simply aware that Jesus loved him and had called him “friend.” Now, John is writing to the churches and admonishing them to do…

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    Quarantine Devotional – Week 7

    1 John 2:1-2, Jesus the Righteous “My little children…” Upon reading this passage, it is clear that John is writing to the Church with fatherly care. He loves those to whom he writes. One cannot and should not attempt to give instruction without love and a regular reminder of the good news out of which that instruction and correction come. “I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin…” John doesn’t desire that any of his audience fall into the trap of sin. Sin is an affront to God. A violation of God’s fatherly love for us through Christ. Sin is, in short, not the way…

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    Quarantine Devotional – Week 6

    1 John 1:5, The Message Heard and Proclaimed “This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.” ~ 1 John 1:5 “Your word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path.” ~ Psalm 119:105 Throughout his writings (John’s Gospel, 1-3 John, and Revelation), John refers to God’s work of creation, his presence and character as light, often contrasting God’s light with this present darkness. In the opening lines of 1 John, John is clear about the message he wishes to communicate to his audience. John 1:5 is the driving statement…

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    Quarantine Devotional – Week 5

    1 John 1:1-4, Fellowship At A Distance This Sunday, we will begin to look together at the first letter of the Apostle John (1 John), of which there are three. The primary theme of 1 John in particular, is fellowship with God and fellowship with one another. Love is the impetus for fellowship. We love because God first loves us. Without love, fellowship does not and cannot exist. Fellowship in turn, nourishes love. As we read through the opening lines of John’s love letter to the Church(es), the necessity and reality of fellowship are for John, essential to the true Church. Take some time to read 1 John 1:1-4 slowly,…

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    Quarantine Devotional – Week 4

    John 20, The Call to Believe “Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book; but these are written that you may believe…” ~ John 20:30-31 Take some time to read John 20 in its entirety. What do you see? What words or phrases stand out to you as important markers to understanding what you read? How is Jesus calling you as you read? John 20 is a flurry of activity that is set in motion by a woman in mourning. The stone has been rolled away. Something purposeful has happened. Tomb stones of this size are not simply moved.…

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    Quarantine Devotional – Week 3

    Mark 4:35-41, “Jesus Asleep” On that day, when evening had come, he said to them, “Let us go across to the other side.” And leaving the crowd, they took him with them in the boat, just as he was. And other boats were with him. And a great windstorm arose, and the waves were breaking into the boat, so that the boat was already filling. But he was in the stern, asleep on the cushion. And they woke him and said to him, “Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?” And he awoke and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, “Peace! Be still!” And the wind…

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    Quarantine Devotional – Week 2

    Deuteronomy 6 – The Continuing Story of Family and Personal Worship   Take some time to read what may be an unfamiliar passage to many of you (Deuteronomy 6). The Lord our God has always called his people in every place and everywhere to meditate upon his Word. What’s more, he calls us to read his Word aloud and “Hear” it. The “Shema” was and continues to be the call to Israel to “Hear” the Word of the Lord. “Shema” is the Hebrew word for “hear.” This song was the rallying cry for ancient Israel then and it is still sung by the Jewish people today.  As God’s covenant people…