2 John 1

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Daily Thoughts

And now I plead with you, lady, not as though I wrote a new commandment to you, but that which we have had from the beginning: that we love one another.

– 2 John 1:5

Many Bible teachers, including myself, believe that John’s reference to “the elect lady” in 2 John is a coded reference referring to the Church. Therefore, John here pleads with the church both 2,000 years ago, and now, to keep the ancient command of God to love one another.

Love is the summary of all of God’s law. As Paul wrote to the Galatians…

“For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”

– Galatians 5:14

And as Jesus spoke in Matthew 22:37-40…

Jesus said to him, “‘You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ “This is the first and great commandment. “And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ “On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.”

It would be difficult to keep all of God’s written law exactingly. But thankfully everything can be concisely summed up in one word. Love.

Today’s goal

Love God and one another.

Helpful Resources

Enduring Word Commentary with Pastor David Guzik

Read the Scriptures at Bible.com

Download the YouVersion Bible App

Additional Daily Devotionals

My Utmost for His Highest | Oswald Chambers

Morning & Evening | Charles Spurgeon

1 John 5

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Daily Thoughts

Who is he who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?

– 1 John 5:5

The Apostle Paul writes in the Book of Romans that Christians are “more than conquerors through Him (Jesus) who loved us” (Romans 8:37).  The word “overcomes” in 1 John 5 and “conquerors” in Romans 8 are the same root words in the original Greek. Through faith in Christ we become conquerors, overcoming the sin and death of this fallen world.

Take heart when faced with difficulties and trials in this world. This world is not all that there is, and in Christ we have an absolutely certain hope of a life beyond this.

Today’s goal

Give thanks to God for all that He has given us in Christ. Happy Thanksgiving!

Helpful Resources

Enduring Word Commentary with Pastor David Guzik

Read the Scriptures at Bible.com

Download the YouVersion Bible App

Additional Daily Devotionals

My Utmost for His Highest | Oswald Chambers

Morning & Evening | Charles Spurgeon

1 John 4

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Daily Thoughts

He who does not love does not know God, for God is love.

– 1 John 4:8

Many refer to 1 Corinthians 13 as “The Love Chapter” in the Bible. First John 4 has to hold a close second in the love competition category. The word love is found 27 times in the 21 verses of this chapter. Here John, the beloved apostle, reveals this great truth; “God is love.”

There are many words that can be used to describe God; holy, just, good, gracious, merciful, powerful, creative, etc. But no list would be complete without “love” near the very top. Without the love of God there’d be no plan for the redemption of lost humanity. Jesus (our Redeemer) is the tangible expression of the love of God. In Him we see the Father’s love demonstrated, and through Him we experience the goodness of God’s love both now and forever.

Today’s goal

Seek to experience and express God’s love in a tangible way today.

Helpful Resources

Enduring Word Commentary with Pastor David Guzik

Read the Scriptures at Bible.com

Download the YouVersion Bible App

Additional Daily Devotionals

My Utmost for His Highest | Oswald Chambers

Morning & Evening | Charles Spurgeon

1 John 3

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Devotional

But whoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him?

– 1 John 3:17

This is a challenging word for Americans. It is clear that we are a nation that “has this world’s goods.” A brief check on the Global Rich List reveals that an income of just $32,500 puts you in the top 1%. I guess those Occupy Wall Street peeps might need to change their slogan.  Not only are we the most wealthy, there is also not a day that goes by that we do not see our fellow brothers and sisters in need.

“God, help me to have a giving heart! Cause Your love to abide in me.”

Today’s goal

Be thankful. Don’t shut up your heart from those truly in need.

Helpful Resources

Enduring Word Commentary with Pastor David Guzik

Read the Scriptures at Bible.com

Download the YouVersion Bible App

Additional Daily Devotionals

My Utmost for His Highest | Oswald Chambers

Morning & Evening | Charles Spurgeon

1 John 2

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Devotional

Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world.

– 1 John 2:15-16

Early in the Bible we are presented with the reason for which we live in such a sad and broken world. Through the first man (and woman) sin entered the world, and death through sin, and death and sin have been spread to every one of us. All of creation now sits under the curse and burden of sin and death.

How did such a terrible thing happen? Through the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life. It’s described like this…

So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate.

– Genesis 3:6

Desire met temptation with opportunity, and Adam and Eve (the first humans) were sunk. The tree looked good (the lust of the eyes), they figured it would taste good (the lust of the flesh) and they were told by the tempter that it would make them like God (the pride of life). So, they gook and ate.

Today’s goal

Don’t stand too close to or gaze to long upon ungodly things that you desire. When lustful desire meets temptation with opportunity, you’ll fall too.

Helpful Resources

Enduring Word Commentary with Pastor David Guzik

Read the Scriptures at Bible.com

Download the YouVersion Bible App

Additional Daily Devotionals

My Utmost for His Highest | Oswald Chambers

Morning & Evening | Charles Spurgeon

1 John 1

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Devotional

If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

– 1 John 1:9

Jesus’s death, burial and resurrection were sufficient and acceptable sacrifices to fully deal with the dark stain of our failures and sin. That is gospel truth that I can stand upon and rejoice in. But while His sacrifice satisfies God’s righteous requirements for all who have sinned, His sacrifice only cleanses that which is brought to Him through confession. You and I cannot cleans ourselves. Only Christ can make us clean. But I have to invite Him—through confession—to do so.

Today’s goal

Don’t try to make yourself clean. You can’t do it anyways. Ask for God to forgive and cleans you from all unrighteousness.

Helpful Resources

Enduring Word Commentary with Pastor David Guzik

Read the Scriptures at Bible.com

Download the YouVersion Bible App

Additional Daily Devotionals

My Utmost for His Highest | Oswald Chambers

Morning & Evening | Charles Spurgeon

2 Peter 3

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Devotional

…knowing this first: that scoffers will come in the last days, walking according to their own lusts, and saying, “Where is the promise of His coming? For since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of creation.”

– 2 Peter 3:3-4

“Knowing this first.” Anytime I see words like those I know that what follows is important. These words are important, and we are certainly living in days in which scoffers mock both the promise of Christ’s second coming, and those that believe and look for Him.

Don’t lose heart! As sure as Jesus came the first time, He will come again.

Today’s goal

Be strong in the promise and hope of the Lord’s coming.

Helpful Resources

Enduring Word Commentary with Pastor David Guzik

Read the Scriptures at Bible.com

Download the YouVersion Bible App

Additional Daily Devotionals

My Utmost for His Highest | Oswald Chambers

Morning & Evening | Charles Spurgeon

2 Peter 2

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Devotional

the Lord knows how to deliver the godly out of temptations and to reserve the unjust under punishment for the day of judgment,

– 2 Peter 2:9

Often times you and I like to think that “we’ve got this.” We don’t! Especially when it comes to the temptations we face. Whatever temptation you face today, God knows how to deliver you out of it.

Today’s goal

Ask God to help you! Don’t try to live this life on your own, without His direction and help.

Helpful Resources

Enduring Word Commentary with Pastor David Guzik

Read the Scriptures at Bible.com

Download the YouVersion Bible App

Additional Daily Devotionals

My Utmost for His Highest | Oswald Chambers

Morning & Evening | Charles Spurgeon

2 Peter 1

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Devotional

[According] as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue,

– 2 Peter 1:3

It seems to be a regular occurrence for me; I just don’t feel as though I have the ability or strength that I need for the given circumstance. Perhaps you can relate to the feeling. This profound verse flies in the face of my (wrong) thought process.

According to God’s power (which, evidently is HUGE), He has given me all that I need to live this life in a godly manner. In Him I have everything I need to face the trying circumstances I may face today, and so do you.

Today’s goal

Ask God to supply you with the patience, self-control, strength, joy, power, or whatever you may need for the trials you face today.

Helpful Resources

Enduring Word Commentary with Pastor David Guzik

Read the Scriptures at Bible.com

Download the YouVersion Bible App

Additional Daily Devotionals

My Utmost for His Highest | Oswald Chambers

Morning & Evening | Charles Spurgeon

1 Peter 5

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Devotional

…be clothed with humility, for “God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble.”

– 1 Peter 5:5

This is an exhortation that is the 100% antithesis of 21st century American cultural mindset. But it brings to bear upon our hearts the reality that as followers of Jesus, we are “not of this world.” Like “What Would Jesus Do?” back in the 90’s, “Not of this world” was a trendy slogan in the 00’s. I can think of no greater way to do what Jesus would do and also express our other-worldliness than to be clothed with humility.

Today’s goal

Be humble. Or you will (eventually) be humbled.

Helpful Resources

Enduring Word Commentary with Pastor David Guzik

Read the Scriptures at Bible.com

Download the YouVersion Bible App

Additional Daily Devotionals

My Utmost for His Highest | Oswald Chambers

Morning & Evening | Charles Spurgeon