Saturday, October 26, 2013

October 26

Titus 1

New International Version (NIV)
Paul, a servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ to further the faith of God’s elect and their knowledge of the truth that leads to godliness— in the hope of eternal life, which God, who does not lie, promised before the beginning of time, and which now at his appointed season he has brought to light through the preaching entrusted to me by the command of God our Savior,
To Titus, my true son in our common faith:
Grace and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Savior.

Appointing Elders Who Love What Is Good

The reason I left you in Crete was that you might put in order what was left unfinished and appoint[a] elders in every town, as I directed you. An elder must be blameless, faithful to his wife, a man whose children believe[b] and are not open to the charge of being wild and disobedient. Since an overseer manages God’s household, he must be blameless—not overbearing, not quick-tempered, not given to drunkenness, not violent, not pursuing dishonest gain. Rather, he must be hospitable, one who loves what is good, who is self-controlled, upright, holy and disciplined. He must hold firmly to the trustworthy message as it has been taught, so that he can encourage others by sound doctrine and refute those who oppose it.

Rebuking Those Who Fail to Do Good

10 For there are many rebellious people, full of meaningless talk and deception, especially those of the circumcision group. 11 They must be silenced, because they are disrupting whole households by teaching things they ought not to teach—and that for the sake of dishonest gain. 12 One of Crete’s own prophets has said it: “Cretans are always liars, evil brutes, lazy gluttons.”[c] 13 This saying is true. Therefore rebuke them sharply, so that they will be sound in the faith 14 and will pay no attention to Jewish myths or to the merely human commands of those who reject the truth. 15 To the pure, all things are pure, but to those who are corrupted and do not believe, nothing is pure. In fact, both their minds and consciences are corrupted. 16 They claim to know God, but by their actions they deny him. They are detestable, disobedient and unfit for doing anything good.


  1. Titus 1:5 Or ordain
  2. Titus 1:6 Or children are trustworthy
  3. Titus 1:12 From the Cretan philosopher Epimenides

Friday, October 25, 2013

October 25
In Season

2 Timothy 4

New International Version (NIV)
In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who will judge the living and the dead, and in view of his appearing and his kingdom, I give you this charge: Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction. For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths. But you, keep your head in all situations, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, discharge all the duties of your ministry.
For I am already being poured out like a drink offering, and the time for my departure is near. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day—and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing.

Personal Remarks

Do your best to come to me quickly, 10 for Demas, because he loved this world, has deserted me and has gone to Thessalonica. Crescens has gone to Galatia, and Titus to Dalmatia. 11 Only Luke is with me. Get Mark and bring him with you, because he is helpful to me in my ministry. 12 I sent Tychicus to Ephesus. 13 When you come, bring the cloak that I left with Carpus at Troas, and my scrolls, especially the parchments.
14 Alexander the metalworker did me a great deal of harm. The Lord will repay him for what he has done. 15 You too should be on your guard against him, because he strongly opposed our message.
16 At my first defense, no one came to my support, but everyone deserted me. May it not be held against them. 17 But the Lord stood at my side and gave me strength, so that through me the message might be fully proclaimed and all the Gentiles might hear it. And I was delivered from the lion’s mouth. 18 The Lord will rescue me from every evil attack and will bring me safely to his heavenly kingdom. To him be glory for ever and ever. Amen.

Final Greetings

19 Greet Priscilla[a] and Aquila and the household of Onesiphorus. 20 Erastus stayed in Corinth, and I left Trophimus sick in Miletus. 21 Do your best to get here before winter. Eubulus greets you, and so do Pudens, Linus, Claudia and all the brothers and sisters.[b]
22 The Lord be with your spirit. Grace be with you all.
Here in the Midwest, we  are into full autumnal bliss! 

It is glorious! The leaves are crisping and mounding up in the yards, the squirrels are bouncing around hoarding the available walnuts, hickory and butternuts in preparation for winter. 

My husband cuts wood for the woodstove, and tries to stockpile enough for heating the house.
Storm windows are put in place, weatherstipping is applied.... so yes, we are preparing for a new season.
When the snow falls and the winds blow, we will be snug in our warm home. 
The same applies to our spiritual life.
We have to prepare by reading all we can of God's Word, so that we will be ready to offer encouragement, instruction, and correction when needed.
And it will not be OUR feelings or OUR desires that drive the Word, it will be the Spirit of the Lord who lives in us. 
Get ready! The Word of God is ALWAYS IN SEASON!


  1. 2 Timothy 4:19 Greek Prisca, a variant of Priscilla
  2. 2 Timothy 4:21 The Greek word for brothers and sisters (adelphoi) refers here to believers, both men and women, as part of God’s family.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

October 23

UnChained and UnChanged! 

2 Timothy 2:1-21

New International Version (NIV)

You then, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable people who will also be qualified to teach others. Join with me in suffering, like a good soldier of Christ Jesus. No one serving as a soldier gets entangled in civilian affairs, but rather tries to please his commanding officer. Similarly, anyone who competes as an athlete does not receive the victor’s crown except by competing according to the rules. The hardworking farmer should be the first to receive a share of the crops. Reflect on what I am saying, for the Lord will give you insight into all this. Remember Jesus Christ, raised from the dead, descended from David. This is my gospel, for which I am suffering even to the point of being chained like a criminal. But God’s word is not chained. 10 Therefore I endure everything for the sake of the elect, that they too may obtain the salvation that is in Christ Jesus, with eternal glory.
11 Here is a trustworthy saying:
If we died with him,
    we will also live with him;
12 if we endure,
    we will also reign with him.
If we disown him,
    he will also disown us;
13 if we are faithless,
    he remains faithful,
    for he cannot disown himself.

Dealing With False Teachers

14 Keep reminding God’s people of these things. Warn them before God against quarreling about words; it is of no value, and only ruins those who listen. 15 Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth. 16 Avoid godless chatter, because those who indulge in it will become more and more ungodly. 17 Their teaching will spread like gangrene. Among them are Hymenaeus and Philetus, 18 who have departed from the truth. They say that the resurrection has already taken place, and they destroy the faith of some. 19 Nevertheless, God’s solid foundation stands firm, sealed with this inscription: “The Lord knows those who are his,” and, “Everyone who confesses the name of the Lord must turn away from wickedness.”
20 In a large house there are articles not only of gold and silver, but also of wood and clay; some are for special purposes and some for common use. 21 Those who cleanse themselves from the latter will be instruments for special purposes, made holy, useful to the Master and prepared to do any good work.
 I love this passage! No matter what condition we may find ourselves in.......tied down, worked up, hard pressed, entangled ..... THE WORD OF GOD IS UNCHAINED! 
Unchained and Unchanged! 
His Word is completely free all the time! It is alive and active. 
No one can stop it. 

Now, we ourselves can try very hard to ignore or refuse to hear it. 
But it is still working... unchanged and unchained... to do the work of God! 


Tuesday, October 22, 2013

October 22
Called to Holiness

2 Timothy 1

New International Version (NIV)
Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, in keeping with the promise of life that is in Christ Jesus,

To Timothy, my dear son:
Grace, mercy and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord.


I thank God, whom I serve, as my ancestors did, with a clear conscience, as night and day I constantly remember you in my prayers. Recalling your tears, I long to see you, so that I may be filled with joy. I am reminded of your sincere faith, which first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice and, I am persuaded, now lives in you also.

Appeal for Loyalty to Paul and the Gospel

For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands. For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline. So do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord or of me his prisoner. Rather, join with me in suffering for the gospel, by the power of God. He has saved us and called us to a holy life—not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time, 10 but it has now been revealed through the appearing of our Savior, Christ Jesus, who has destroyed death and has brought life and immortality to light through the gospel. 11 And of this gospel I was appointed a herald and an apostle and a teacher. 12 That is why I am suffering as I am. Yet this is no cause for shame, because I know whom I have believed, and am convinced that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him until that day.
13 What you heard from me, keep as the pattern of sound teaching, with faith and love in Christ Jesus. 14 Guard the good deposit that was entrusted to you—guard it with the help of the Holy Spirit who lives in us.

Examples of Disloyalty and Loyalty

15 You know that everyone in the province of Asia has deserted me, including Phygelus and Hermogenes.
16 May the Lord show mercy to the household of Onesiphorus, because he often refreshed me and was not ashamed of my chains. 17 On the contrary, when he was in Rome, he searched hard for me until he found me. 18 May the Lord grant that he will find mercy from the Lord on that day! You know very well in how many ways he helped me in Ephesus.
Questions to ponder:
What evidence do you see in your own life of:
     Self Disicpline?
     The Love of Christ?
     The Power of Christ?

Where do you need to make adjustments and changes in order to have more of these present in your life?  


Monday, October 21, 2013

October 21

Take Care


1 Timothy 5

New Living Translation (NLT)

Advice about Widows, Elders, and Slaves

Never speak harshly to an older man,[a] but appeal to him respectfully as you would to your own father. Talk to younger men as you would to your own brothers. Treat older women as you would your mother, and treat younger women with all purity as you would your own sisters.
Take care of[b] any widow who has no one else to care for her. But if she has children or grandchildren, their first responsibility is to show godliness at home and repay their parents by taking care of them. This is something that pleases God.
Now a true widow, a woman who is truly alone in this world, has placed her hope in God. She prays night and day, asking God for his help. But the widow who lives only for pleasure is spiritually dead even while she lives. Give these instructions to the church so that no one will be open to criticism.
But those who won’t care for their relatives, especially those in their own household, have denied the true faith. Such people are worse than unbelievers.
A widow who is put on the list for support must be a woman who is at least sixty years old and was faithful to her husband.[c] 10 She must be well respected by everyone because of the good she has done. Has she brought up her children well? Has she been kind to strangers and served other believers humbly?[d] Has she helped those who are in trouble? Has she always been ready to do good?
11 The younger widows should not be on the list, because their physical desires will overpower their devotion to Christ and they will want to remarry. 12 Then they would be guilty of breaking their previous pledge. 13 And if they are on the list, they will learn to be lazy and will spend their time gossiping from house to house, meddling in other people’s business and talking about things they shouldn’t. 14 So I advise these younger widows to marry again, have children, and take care of their own homes. Then the enemy will not be able to say anything against them. 15 For I am afraid that some of them have already gone astray and now follow Satan.
16 If a woman who is a believer has relatives who are widows, she must take care of them and not put the responsibility on the church. Then the church can care for the widows who are truly alone.
17 Elders who do their work well should be respected and paid well,[e] especially those who work hard at both preaching and teaching. 18 For the Scripture says, “You must not muzzle an ox to keep it from eating as it treads out the grain.” And in another place, “Those who work deserve their pay!”[f]
19 Do not listen to an accusation against an elder unless it is confirmed by two or three witnesses. 20 Those who sin should be reprimanded in front of the whole church; this will serve as a strong warning to others.
21 I solemnly command you in the presence of God and Christ Jesus and the highest angels to obey these instructions without taking sides or showing favoritism to anyone.
22 Never be in a hurry about appointing a church leader.[g] Do not share in the sins of others. Keep yourself pure.
23 Don’t drink only water. You ought to drink a little wine for the sake of your stomach because you are sick so often.
24 Remember, the sins of some people are obvious, leading them to certain judgment. But there are others whose sins will not be revealed until later. 25 In the same way, the good deeds of some people are obvious. And the good deeds done in secret will someday come to light.
The Lord wants us to be care-takers. Do you see that too, as you read today's scripture?
But we are to be careful care takers.
Having a good heart toward those who need help is a Godly trait and we should nourish it. But we also must have a discernment that will allow us to also encourage those who are able to care for themselves to do so.
Verse 11 begins to show us what happens when someone who finds themselves in a sad condition... having been widowed at a young age... let's themselves completely shut down.
Their life goes from sad... to worse.
As humans... even humans who are saved and set apart for the Lord... we still need encouragement to continue to do the will of God. Not sink into a pit; hang our pictures on the wall, and stay there.
Quite often we cant climb out on our own... we need a ladder, or possibly steps built, or even just a light shown on the upward path so that we can see our way out of the depths.
There are those widows, who are true widows, who really have no options, No helping relatives or family to come around them.
To them, we are to become the family. We are asked by Almighty God to do this.
I believe that this can also apply if someone is taken away from their family home for school or work or perhaps other reasons, and find themselves alone.
We are asked -told- by God to be there for them.
Are you making yourself available to someone who is alone?
Are you encouraging one who has fallen or climbed into a pit of fear, doubt, shame, regret, and cant find the way out?
Pray and ask God to show you this ministry opportunity!
It will serve Him well!
It may rescue someone who really needs rescue!
And will bring joy!
Be Blessed!


  1. 5:1 Or an elder.
  2. 5:3 Or Honor.
  3. 5:9 Greek was the wife of one husband.
  4. 5:10 Greek and washed the feet of God’s holy people?
  5. 5:17 Greek should be worthy of double honor.
  6. 5:18 Deut 25:4; Luke 10:7.
  7. 5:22 Greek about the laying on of hands.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

October 19

Pointing to Truth

1 Timothy 4

New International Version (NIV)
The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons. Such teachings come through hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron. They forbid people to marry and order them to abstain from certain foods, which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and who know the truth. For everything God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, because it is consecrated by the word of God and prayer.
If you point these things out to the brothers and sisters,[a] you will be a good minister of Christ Jesus, nourished on the truths of the faith and of the good teaching that you have followed. Have nothing to do with godless myths and old wives’ tales; rather, train yourself to be godly. For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come. This is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance. 10 That is why we labor and strive, because we have put our hope in the living God, who is the Savior of all people, and especially of those who believe.
11 Command and teach these things. 12 Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity. 13 Until I come, devote yourself to the public reading of Scripture, to preaching and to teaching. 14 Do not neglect your gift, which was given you through prophecy when the body of elders laid their hands on you.
15 Be diligent in these matters; give yourself wholly to them, so that everyone may see your progress. 16 Watch your life and doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers.

It is our "job" as believers and followers of Christ to keep pointing others to Him and his glorious truth.
This world we live in holds distractions on so many different levels for every person, that it is full-time work! 
When we see deception coming at us from every direction, EVEN FROM SOME CHURCHES AND DENOMINATIONS, we must stay diligent to seek God's truth from the scriptures and to stand strong in our faith! 
This is not just for us as believers, nor only for our friends and family, but also we are called to hold out truth to ALL people. 
We do this not only by what we speak, but also by the way in which we live our lives.
Keep pointing others to the truth! 


  1. 1 Timothy 4:6 The Greek word for brothers and sisters (adelphoi) refers here to believers, both men and women, as part of God’s family.