Original Documents

Click below to see readings for the week:

Read 1 Corinthians 10:1-13

Wednesday

Read 1 Corinthians 10:1-13

I want you to remember, my friends, what happened to our ancestors who followed Moses. They were all under the protection of the cloud, and all passed safely through the Red Sea. 2 In the cloud and in the sea they were all baptized as followers of Moses. 3 All ate the same spiritual bread 4 and drank the same spiritual drink. They drank from the spiritual rock that went with them; and that rock was Christ himself. 5 But even then God was not pleased with most of them, and so their dead bodies were scattered over the desert.

6 Now, all of this is an example for us, to warn us not to desire evil things, as they did, 7 nor to worship idols, as some of them did. As the scripture says, “The people sat down to a feast which turned into an orgy of drinking and sex.” 8 We must not be guilty of sexual immorality, as some of them were—and in one day twenty-three thousand of them fell dead. 9 We must not put the Lord[a] to the test, as some of them did—and they were killed by snakes. 10 We must not complain, as some of them did—and they were destroyed by the Angel of Death.

11 All these things happened to them as examples for others, and they were written down as a warning for us. For we live at a time when the end is about to come.

12 If you think you are standing firm you had better be careful that you do not fall. 13 Every test that you have experienced is the kind that normally comes to people. But God keeps his promise, and he will not allow you to be tested beyond your power to remain firm; at the time you are put to the test, he will give you the strength to endure it, and so provide you with a way out.

Footnotes:
1 Corinthians 10:9 the Lord; some manuscripts have Christ.
Good News Translation (GNT)
Copyright © 1992 by American Bible Society

Think

... at the time you are put to the test, he will give you the strength to endure it, and so provide you with a way out. (Verse 13)
No matter what you are going through - God's grace is enough to sustain you; to lift you, to help you.

Pray

Lord help me to remember that it is by your grace that I stand; that I am able to be lifted up.

Read Isaiah 55:1-9

Tuesday

Read Isaiah 55:1-9

55 The Lord says,

“Come, everyone who is thirsty—
   here is water!
Come, you that have no money—
   buy grain and eat!
Come! Buy wine and milk—
   it will cost you nothing!
2 Why spend money on what does not satisfy?
   Why spend your wages and still be hungry?
Listen to me and do what I say,
   and you will enjoy the best food of all.

3 “Listen now, my people, and come to me;
   come to me, and you will have life!
I will make a lasting covenant with you
   and give you the blessings I promised to David.
4 I made him a leader and commander of nations,
   and through him I showed them my power.
5 Now you will summon foreign nations;
   at one time they did not know you,
   but now they will come running to join you!
I, the Lord your God, the holy God of Israel,
   will make all this happen;
   I will give you honor and glory.”

6 Turn to the Lord and pray to him,
   now that he is near.
7 Let the wicked leave their way of life
   and change their way of thinking.
Let them turn to the Lord, our God;
   he is merciful and quick to forgive.
8 “My thoughts,” says the Lord, “are not like yours,
   and my ways are different from yours.
9 As high as the heavens are above the earth,
   so high are my ways and thoughts above yours.

Good News Translation (GNT)
Copyright © 1992 by American Bible Society

Think

Verse 6 - "turn to the Lord and pray to him, now that he is near..."
Isaiah reminds us that God is always calling all people into loving and life giving relationship with himself.  All we need to is turn to him.

Pray

As you pray remind yourself that God is near; listening attentively to every word on your mind, on your lips and in your heart.


Read Psalm 63:1-8

Monday

Read Psalm 63:1-8

O God, you are my God,
   and I long for you.
My whole being desires you;
   like a dry, worn-out, and waterless land,
   my soul is thirsty for you.
2 Let me see you in the sanctuary;
   let me see how mighty and glorious you are.
3 Your constant love is better than life itself,
   and so I will praise you.
4 I will give you thanks as long as I live;
   I will raise my hands to you in prayer.
5 My soul will feast and be satisfied,
   and I will sing glad songs of praise to you.

6 As I lie in bed, I remember you;
   all night long I think of you,
7     because you have always been my help.
In the shadow of your wings I sing for joy.
8 I cling to you,
   and your hand keeps me safe.

Footnotes:
Psalm 63:1 HEBREW TITLE: A psalm by David, when he was in the desert of Judea.
Good News Translation (GNT)
Copyright © 1992 by American Bible Society

Think

When we fast we direct our hunger or desire for the things we forgo towards God.  The Psalmist describes a deep and abiding hunger for God.

Pray

Lord help me to hunger for you in everything I do today.


Read Luke 13:1-9

Friday

Read Luke 13:1-9

13 At that time some people were there who told Jesus about the Galileans whom Pilate had killed while they were offering sacrifices to God. 2 Jesus answered them, “Because those Galileans were killed in that way, do you think it proves that they were worse sinners than all other Galileans? 3 No indeed! And I tell you that if you do not turn from your sins, you will all die as they did. 4 What about those eighteen people in Siloam who were killed when the tower fell on them? Do you suppose this proves that they were worse than all the other people living in Jerusalem? 5 No indeed! And I tell you that if you do not turn from your sins, you will all die as they did.”

6 Then Jesus told them this parable: “There was once a man who had a fig tree growing in his vineyard. He went looking for figs on it but found none. 7 So he said to his gardener, ‘Look, for three years I have been coming here looking for figs on this fig tree, and I haven't found any. Cut it down! Why should it go on using up the soil?’ 8 But the gardener answered, ‘Leave it alone, sir, just one more year; I will dig around it and put in some fertilizer. 9 Then if the tree bears figs next year, so much the better; if not, then you can have it cut down.’”

Good News Translation (GNT)
Copyright © 1992 by American Bible Society

Think

Jesus responds to the news of the day - some Galileans had been killed by Pilate while bringing their offerings;  people had been killed when a tower fell on them. Some people see these sorts of events as a sign that those people who were killed had it coming.  Jesus reminds us that these events are not some sort of punishment - and he reminds us that each of us need to turn away from our sins.

Pray


Lord I am just like every other sinful person in the world; I thank you for your grace so freely extended to me.  Teach me to humbly guard my ways.

Friday

Read Luke 13:1-9

13 At that time some people were there who told Jesus about the Galileans whom Pilate had killed while they were offering sacrifices to God. 2 Jesus answered them, “Because those Galileans were killed in that way, do you think it proves that they were worse sinners than all other Galileans? 3 No indeed! And I tell you that if you do not turn from your sins, you will all die as they did. 4 What about those eighteen people in Siloam who were killed when the tower fell on them? Do you suppose this proves that they were worse than all the other people living in Jerusalem? 5 No indeed! And I tell you that if you do not turn from your sins, you will all die as they did.”

6 Then Jesus told them this parable: “There was once a man who had a fig tree growing in his vineyard. He went looking for figs on it but found none. 7 So he said to his gardener, ‘Look, for three years I have been coming here looking for figs on this fig tree, and I haven't found any. Cut it down! Why should it go on using up the soil?’ 8 But the gardener answered, ‘Leave it alone, sir, just one more year; I will dig around it and put in some fertilizer. 9 Then if the tree bears figs next year, so much the better; if not, then you can have it cut down.’”

Good News Translation (GNT)
Copyright © 1992 by American Bible Society

Think

Jesus responds to the news of the day - some Galileans had been killed by Pilate while bringing their offerings;  people had been killed when a tower fell on them. Some people see these sorts of events as a sign that those people who were killed had it coming.  Jesus reminds us that these events are not some sort of punishment - and he reminds us that each of us need to turn away from our sins.

Pray

Lord I am just like every other sinful person in the world; I thank you for your grace so freely extended to me.  Teach me to humbly guard my ways.

Read Luke 13:31-35

Thursday

Read Luke 13:31-35

31 At that same time some Pharisees came to Jesus and said to him, “You must get out of here and go somewhere else, because Herod wants to kill you.”

32 Jesus answered them, “Go and tell that fox: ‘I am driving out demons and performing cures today and tomorrow, and on the third day I shall finish my work.’ 33 Yet I must be on my way today, tomorrow, and the next day; it is not right for a prophet to be killed anywhere except in Jerusalem.

34 “Jerusalem, Jerusalem! You kill the prophets, you stone the messengers God has sent you! How many times I wanted to put my arms around all your people, just as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you would not let me! 35 And so your Temple will be abandoned. I assure you that you will not see me until the time comes when you say, ‘God bless him who comes in the name of the Lord.’”

Think

“...but you would not let me.” (Verse 34). As humans we are often angry with God for the things that happen in the world; but we seldom (if ever) surrender ourselves to God’s embrace.

Pray

“Lord I come to you, let my heart be changed, renewed...  
Hold me close, Let your love surround me; Bring me near, Draw me to Your side.” - Geoff Bullock


Read Philippians 3:17-4:1

Wednesday

Read Philippians 3:17-4:1

17 Keep on imitating me, my friends. Pay attention to those who follow the right example that we have set for you. 18 I have told you this many times before, and now I repeat it with tears: there are many whose lives make them enemies of Christ's death on the cross. 19 They are going to end up in hell, because their god is their bodily desires. They are proud of what they should be ashamed of, and they think only of things that belong to this world. 20 We, however, are citizens of heaven, and we eagerly wait for our Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, to come from heaven. 21 He will change our weak mortal bodies and make them like his own glorious body, using that power by which he is able to bring all things under his rule.

4 So then, my friends, how dear you are to me and how I miss you! How happy you make me, and how proud I am of you!—this, dear friends, is how you should stand firm in your life in the Lord.

Good News Translation (GNT)
Copyright © 1992 by American Bible Society

Think

Paul has harsh words to say in verse 18-19: “they are going to end up in hell, because their god is their bodily desires.” In this case the Good News Bible uses hell where other Bibles would use ‘Destroyed’ - the Greek word ‘apoleia’ means ruined / broken / worn out. We all know that to live for Earthly things wears us down - but to live for God - builds us up.

Pray

Lord I wear myself out for things that will themselves wear out - teach me to build myself up in relationship with you.


Read Genesis 15:1-12 and 17-18

Tuesday

Read Genesis 15:1-12 and 17-18

15 After this, Abram had a vision and heard the Lord say to him, “Do not be afraid, Abram. I will shield you from danger and give you a great reward.”

2 But Abram answered, “Sovereign Lord, what good will your reward do me, since I have no children? My only heir is Eliezer of Damascus.[a] 3 You have given me no children, and one of my slaves will inherit my property.”

4 Then he heard the Lord speaking to him again: “This slave Eliezer will not inherit your property; your own son will be your heir.” 5 The Lord took him outside and said, “Look at the sky and try to count the stars; you will have as many descendants as that.”

6 Abram put his trust in the Lord, and because of this the Lord was pleased with him and accepted him.

7 Then the Lord said to him, “I am the Lord, who led you out of Ur in Babylonia, to give you this land as your own.”

8 But Abram asked, “Sovereign Lord, how can I know that it will be mine?”

9 He answered, “Bring me a cow, a goat, and a ram, each of them three years old, and a dove and a pigeon.” 10 Abram brought the animals to God, cut them in half, and placed the halves opposite each other in two rows; but he did not cut up the birds. 11 Vultures came down on the bodies, but Abram drove them off.

12 When the sun was going down, Abram fell into a deep sleep, and fear and terror came over him.

17 When the sun had set and it was dark, a smoking fire pot and a flaming torch suddenly appeared and passed between the pieces of the animals. 18 Then and there the Lord made a covenant with Abram. He said, “I promise to give your descendants all this land from the border of Egypt to the Euphrates River,

Good News Translation (GNT)
Copyright © 1992 by American Bible Society

Think

When God made this covenant with Abraham; the faith was still new.  There was no scripture - just God speaking to Abraham and Abraham learning about God’s heart.  God makes Abraham a great big promise - a seemingly impossible promise. Abraham expresses his doubts; he also brings great sacrifices - falls asleep and in his sleep God appears to Abraham as a smoking pot of fire - receiving the sacrifice.

Pray

Abraham receives God’s promise for him - what is God’s promise for you?  Do you doubt it? Are you able to fervently pray and worship and ask God to give you more clarity?