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Loving God

Today's Message

{ Day 62 }

I will proclaim the decree of the Lord: He said to me, "You are my Son; today I have become your Father. Ask of me, and I will make the nations your inheritance, the ends of the earth your possession. You will rule them with an iron scepter; you will dash them to pieces like pottery." —Psalm 2:7-9

Remember that the shepherd boy who stood with holy confidence before Goliath while King Saul and the army of Israel cowered in the background is the author of this psalm. (See 1 Samuel 17.) Refusing to wear the cumbersome religious armor of his day, David charged out to face Goliath. He didn't see big Goliath and little David as he ran toward the battle line. He didn't see a huge sword and a little slingshot. All he saw were the powers of darkness mocking and defying the living God. David's stone and sling were irrelevant. He had the name of the Lord of hosts and the unshakeable confidence that His God would prevail!

{ PRAYER STARTER }

Let me be a soldier in Your great end-time army, O Lord. Give me an unshakeable confidence in Your victory, and defeat the giants that try to intimidate me and cause me to forget Your awesome power and glory.

God will have His end-time army of Davids who are
filled with the knowledge of their almighty God.
Their captain is the Lord of hosts,
and He has never lost a battle.


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Daily Breakthroughs

Today's Message

An Army of Repentance

Who is she that looketh forth as the morning, fair as the moon, clear as the sun, and terrible as an army with banners? —Song of Solomon 6:10

Without repentance, your refreshing, revival, and restoration cannot come. The gift of the Holy Spirit cannot come. "Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost" (Acts 2:38, italics added).

People vainly seek the presence of God without first repenting. But God hates sin. He demands, "Be holy: for I the Lord your God am holy" (Leviticus 19:2). Be certain of this: You cannot know His presence without first turning from your sin and guilt. Repentance was the first adamant message of the early church: "Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord" (Acts 3:19, italics added).

We must forsake, rebuke, and reject the shadows of sin threatening to pull us back into the obscure darkness. We must abandon old wells—wells from the world, from past sin, from religious tradition. We will never be "the terrible army of banners" until we first repent.

Jesus, I repent of all my past and I reject the
night of religious traditions and the ways
of the world. I seek to walk in Your light
and march in Your army. Draft me to
do Your will in Your way. Amen.


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By Love Transformed

Today's Message

Wait to Succeed

Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. —James 1:4

In early 1956 I felt that God gave me a fresh message to preach. I saw things in Scripture that I had not heard preached anywhere. I saw teaching, doctrine, and insight that I thought had been revealed to nobody but the apostle Paul! I foolishly left college since I felt I had no more to learn there. I also was convinced that the Second Coming of Jesus was so near that I was wasting my time with further preparation.

My dad was distraught that his only son had come to this. Dad begged for proof that I was in God's will. I assured him God was going to use me—powerfully and internationally! I had been given visions from the Lord that showed me clearly that I would see great revival. Dad had one question: When? I replied with absolute confidence, "Within one year." He asked me to write it down so he could have it to show me one year later! I wrote it down. One year later I was selling Stroll-O-Chairs, a portable assortment of baby equipment. I had no opportunities to preach.

Dr. Lloyd-Jones once said to me, "The worst thing that can happen to a man is to succeed before he is ready." That statement was probably the most powerful word he ever gave me. I  believe it to be true, and I can only conclude that I was withheld the success I had hoped for by God's gracious will. One reason I took myself too seriously back in 1956 was that I received visions that indicated I would be used of God. I assumed these visions would be fulfilled soon. They weren't. But because I had them and believed they were truly from the Holy Spirit, I assumed I was special. I became arrogant. I was not ready.

I am so thankful God is still peeling away those layers of arrogance and presumption. I'd rather not be greatly used at all than be given a greater anointing that I would abuse. God has withheld the success for which I have hoped for my own good—to keep me from being successful before I am ready.

Excerpted from The Anointing: Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow (Charisma House, 2003).


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Around the Word in 365 Days

Today's Message

The Quiet Place

Psalm 31:19-24 Imagine being in a pavilion set in a green meadow sprinkled with wild flowers. As you view the bright blue sky, the only sounds you hear are the birds singing, the quiet flow of the stream beside you and the Holy Spirit making melody in your heart. We can enter such a place daily as we walk in the Spirit. David knew this secret. "Thou shalt hide them in the secret of thy presence from the pride of man: thou shalt keep them secretly in a pavilion far from the strife of tongues" (Ps. 31:20, KJV).

Every morning I lie on the sofa in our sunroom and look at the sky through the sky light above me. On the table beside me is a decorative sign that says "The Quiet Place." The only sounds I hear are the birds singing and leaves gently falling with the breeze. As I sink into the sofa, I climb into the quiet place God has promised me. It is just a time for my Maker and me. It is our time of intimacy. Here my Good Shepherd stills my soul, and I find strength for the day that lies ahead of me. Here I hear His still, quiet voice speaking to me, and I rejoice in Him. Sometimes I sing songs to Him, and sometimes I hear with my spiritual ears His songs to me. Often I hear Him say, "Linda, I love you." No sound is able to break the silence of my soul as I wait upon Him. I know I will soon have to arise from this quiet pavilion and get about the duties of being a wife, homemaker and teacher in the kingdom. Before I arise, however, I ask the Lord to keep my soul and spirit in this quiet place all the day long. I want to be able to hear His voice during the day as He instructs me and teaches me. I want to make melody in my heart to Him all the day long.

The promise of our Lord is that if we would come to Him daily and learn of Him meekness and lowliness of heart, we will be able to remain in this quiet pavilion far away from the strife of tongues. Here we will find rest for our souls, and nothing that is spoken to us will offend us. Every word spoken in strife against us will bounce off this pavilion that is cushioned with His grace and perfect love.

I have come to recognize the instant I walk out of this quiet place by my own free will. My soul becomes troubled, and things others say against me impact my mind and emotions. When this happens, once again I think of that pavilion in the green meadow by the stream, and I say, "Lead me by the still waters, Lord, and comfort my soul." The quiet place is established once again, and I can continue the day with settled emotions. Join me in this quiet place today by responding to His invitation: "Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden; and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls" (Matt. 11:28-29, KJV).

READ: Exodus 29:1-30:10; Matthew 26:14-46; Psalm 31:19-24; Proverbs 8:14-26


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Live Extraordinarily

Today's Message

Bringing Heaven to Earth

Jesus' mission of revealing the kingdom could be identified with one word: righteousness. We are told, "For the kingdom of God is…righteousness" (Romans 14:17, NKJV). Jesus tells us to "seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness" (Matthew 6:33, NKJV). To put it simply, righteousness means "right in the eyes of God."

Scripture makes it crystal clear: "There is none righteous, no, not one" (Romans 3:10, NKJV). Unless someone is born again by the incorruptible seed of the Word of God, it is impossible to be righteous or acceptable in the eyes of God. However, the Word declares: "Christ was without sin, but for our sake God made him share our sin in order that in union with him we might share the righteousness of God." (2 Corinthians 5:21, TEV)

Because of what Jesus did for us, we are now acceptable to God in every way. Right standing with Him has nothing to do with our effort but is based on the amazing work of Jesus Christ. It breaks my heart to hear Christians refer to themselves as miserable sinners who have just been forgiven when such a great price was paid for us to not only be forgiven and delivered but also to be re-created in the image of Jesus.

First and foremost, the kingdom within speaks of the divine nature, which empowers us to live holy and fruitful in this present world. This power is most evident in the life of Jesus. He showed how humankind was created to live—not bound to the burning desires of fallen flesh, but motivated by righteousness, propelled by the power of the Holy Spirit in love, joy, and peace—abounding in forgiveness, healing, restoration, and lifting others to the higher life. This is the kingdom; it's not only to live holy but also to bring heaven to our lost and dying world.

Now here is His charge to us: "As the Father has sent Me, I also send you." (John 20:21, NKJV)

What a statement! We are to bring heaven to earth in the same manner Jesus did. In essence, this is how it should be: To see one of Christ's true followers is to see Jesus, just as seeing Jesus was to see the Father.

What a responsibility—and an opportunity—this is for each of us!

Marked by boldness and passion, John Bevere delivers uncompromising truth through his award-winning curriculum and best-selling books now available in over sixty languages. His newest book is Extraordinary: The Life You're Meant to Live. More information is available at www.ExtraordinaryOnline.org.

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