Daily Archives: September 2, 2018

September 2: Only the Very Beginning

Hosea 3:1–5:15; Acts 2:1–41; Job 15:10–20

Beginnings are exciting. The freshness of a new project or a new relationship sharpens our senses. When that novelty diminishes, though, it’s difficult to maintain the same level of excitement.

Acts 2 is all about beginnings. In this passage we get an inside view of how God worked to gather a new community of believers to Himself. Pentecost and the arrival of the Holy Spirit signaled a new era and produced a new community, as both Jews and “devout men from every nation under heaven” converted to the Christian faith (Acts 2:5).

From where we stand, it’s easy for us to see Pentecost as the pivotal moment in the history of the Church—an unparalleled event that changed the world forever. Magnificent things happened. Peter gave a moving testimony. Three thousand people came to faith.

When we celebrate the holiday of Pentecost, however, we are remembering the firstfruits of the harvest—the coming of the Holy Spirit and the original community of believers under Jesus Christ. Firstfruits are only the start of a harvest; they hint at future abundance. The wonders that began at Pentecost are still happening today. God is active and present in our lives, just as He was gathering His Church then.

We need a fresh perspective. We need the motivation and the boldness of Peter. We need to rekindle our original excitement when announcing that the kingdom of heaven is at hand, because He is at work, in us and around us.

How are you sharing this hope?

Rebecca Van Noord[1]


[1] Barry, J. D., & Kruyswijk, R. (2012). Connect the Testaments: A One-Year Daily Devotional with Bible Reading Plan. Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.

September 2 Preparing for Battle

“Be strong in the Lord, and in the strength of His might. Put on the full armor of God, that you may be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil” (Eph. 6:10–11).

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Adequate preparation is the key to spiritual victory.

The Gulf War introduced some highly sophisticated weapons that had never been proven under live battle conditions. Most of the troops hadn’t experienced war either. Yet, troops and machinery combined in a display of military conquest unparalleled in history.

Thorough preparation proved to be an indispensable element in that overwhelming victory. That included developing and testing high-tech weaponry, recruiting and training troops, and engaging in mock battles. Generals know that if they dare enter a battlefield ill-prepared, they’re destined for defeat. Consequently, they do everything possible to prepare their troops for victory.

Similarly, your success in spiritual warfare is directly proportional to your preparedness. You must “be strong in the Lord, and in the strength of His might” (Eph. 6:10) and must also put on your armor (v. 11). God is your strength and source of victory, but you must trust Him and must appropriate your spiritual resources. As Oliver Cromwell said, “Trust in God and keep your powder dry.”

If you delay preparation until the battle is upon you, it’s too late. If your armor isn’t in place, you’re vulnerable to the arrows of the enemy. If you neglect prayer, worship, Bible study, accountability, and the other disciplines of faith, you can’t expect to prevail when spiritual skirmishes arise.

No soldier who values his own life would step onto a battlefield unprepared. How much more should soldiers of Christ prepare themselves to fight against Satan’s forces! Be diligent. Christ guarantees ultimate victory, but you can lose individual battles if you’re unprepared. It’s even possible to lapse into periods of spiritual lethargy, indifference, impotency, and ineffectiveness, but that’s utterly inconsistent with your mandate to “fight the good fight” (1 Tim. 1:18).

Don’t be caught off-guard! Keep your armor on, and remain alert to the advances of the enemy.

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Suggestions for Prayer:  Ask God to keep you alert to the reality of spiritual warfare and to the need to be prepared at all times for battle. ✧ Thank Him for the times He protected you when your armor wasn’t as secure as it needed to be.

For Further Study: Memorize 2 Timothy 2:4 as a reminder to be spiritually prepared at all times.[1]


[1] MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (1993). Drawing Near—Daily Readings for a Deeper Faith (p. 258). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books.

SEPTEMBER 2 ATTRIBUTES OF GOD

And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them.

Acts 2:3

What a broad world in which to roam; what an expansive sea in which to swim—and I speak of the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ!

He is eternal, which means He is wholly independent of time. Time began in Him and will end in Him.

He is immutable, which means that He has never changed and can never change in any smallest measure. Being perfect, He cannot become more perfect. If He were to become less perfect, He would be less than God.

He is omniscient, which means that He knows in one free and effortless act all matter, all spirit, all relationships, all events. He is; and none of the limiting terms of creatures can apply to Him. Love and mercy and righteousness are His, and holiness so ineffable that no comparisons or figures will avail to express it.

In the pillar of fire, He dwelt. The fire that glowed in the “holy place” was called the Shekinah, the Presence. Then when the Old gave way to the New, He came at Pentecost as a fiery flame and rested upon each disciple!

What a day it will be, Lord, when Your children see You in all Your glory and share in Your eternal riches. While we wait for Your return, Father, help us to remain faithful to You.[1]


[1] Tozer, A. W. (2015). Mornings with tozer: daily devotional readings. Chicago, IL: Moody Publishers.

The Two Americas; Democrat vs Republican, Summed Up by This Hilarious Cartoon

The hilarious cartoon below brilliantly illustrates the divide between the two Americas, one Democrat and the other Republican:

Nails it!

While the half of the country that pays attention to the mainstream media is miserable as they think the sky is falling, the other half is quite happy with the progress made so far by President Trump.

Source: The Two Americas; Democrat vs Republican, Summed Up by This Hilarious Cartoon