Author Archives: AsherB

Exodus 16-18; Ephesians 4

In Ephesians 4, Paul talks about the bond between believers. He says,

“I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace” (Ephesians 4:1-3 ESV).

The unity of the Spirit is interesting to me. All Christians are bound together by the very fact that they are Christians and called to God’s purposes. Paul says we are to walk in a manner worthy of our calling and be eager to maintain the unity that comes from being Christians. I don’t often think of the unity that is supposed to exist between believers, yet Paul emphasizes it as an essential part of Christian life, stating that I should be eager to maintain it. He says,

“Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love” (Ephesians 4:15-16 ESV).

When Christians are properly unified as a body, Christ makes the body of the church build itself in love. It is good for me to be unified to other Christians through my faith, so that the body of the church grows and builds itself up in love.

Dear God, please help me to find unity with others through my Christian faith. Thank you for all your blessings, and the free gift of salvation through Jesus Christ. In Jesus’s name I pray. Amen

Asher (AsherB)

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Genesis 16-18; Mark 6

In the book of Genesis God makes some big promises to His servants, and even when they doubt Him, He fulfills those promises. After Hagar flees into the wilderness the angel of the Lord appears to her. Genesis 16 says,

“The angel of the Lord also said to her, ‘I will surely multiply your offspring so that they cannot be numbered for multitude’” (Genesis 16:10 ESV).

Hagar believes what God tells her and declares that he is looking after her. God does indeed fulfill his promise to Hagar, telling Abraham,

“As for Ishmael, I have heard you; behold, I have blessed him and will make him fruitful and multiply him greatly” (Genesis 17:20 ESV).

God also makes promises to Sarah and Abraham. He tells Abraham,

“’I will bless her, and moreover, I will give you a son by her. I will bless her, and she shall become nations; kings of peoples shall come from her.’ Then Abraham fell on his face and laughed and said to himself, ‘Shall a child be born to a man who is a hundred years old? Shall Sarah, who is ninety years old, bear a child?’ And Abraham said to God, ‘Oh that Ishmael might live before you!’ God said, ‘No, but Sarah your wife shall bear you a son, and you shall call his name Isaac” (Genesis 17:16-19 ESV).

Sarah also doubts God’s promise to Abraham, Genesis 18 says,

“So Sarah laughed to herself, saying, ‘After I am worn out, and my lord is old, shall I have pleasure?’ The Lord said to Abraham, ‘Why did Sarah laugh and say, ‘Shall I indeed bear a child, now that I am old?’ Is anything too hard for the Lord?” (Genesis 18:12-14 ESV).

Unlike Hagar, Abraham and Sarah initially doubt God’s promises. However, He remains faithful and delivers on His word. It is a great comfort to me that God can be trusted to deliver on His promises even when people doubt, or even laugh to His face. Nothing is impossible with God, regardless of what people think of what He promises, and if He makes a promise, I know that I can trust Him to fulfill it. As I head into 2021, I want to remember that I can always trust in God to do what he says He will. God and His promises are constant, and a solid rock that I can plant myself on without fear.

Dear God, thank you that I can always trust in You and Your promises. As I head into a new year, please help me to keep my mind on You and Your word, and please help me to trust in You always. In Jesus’s holy name I pray. Amen.

Asher (AsherB)

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2 Chronicles 11; Revelation 2; Zephaniah 3; John 1

Revelation 2 consists of Jesus giving messages to specific churches and telling them what they were doing well, and what was going wrong.

“I know you are enduring patiently and bearing up for my name’s sake, and you have not grown weary. But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first. Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first. If not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent” (Revelation 2:3-5).

Here Jesus is encouraging the church in Ephesus, as well as warning them of some of the pitfalls that their church has fallen into. This is encouraging to me because it shows that Jesus knows what struggles everyone is going through, and he knows what they are doing well as well as where they are going wrong. Just because I’m doing well in some areas doesn’t mean that Jesus just overlooks everywhere where I am failing. Jesus understands what my struggles and strengths are, and he wants me to improve in my weak areas so that I can more fully serve him. John reminds me of Jesus’s greatness and goodness.

“He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it” (John 1:1-4).

These verses are encouraging to me because of the reassurance they provide. Jesus made all things, and the darkness will not overcome his light.

Dear God, thank You for everything that You have blessed me with. Please help me to improve in all the ways in which I am weak, so that I can fully serve You with all my heart. Please help me to remember that Your Word says that You created all things, and that nothing was made without You. In Jesus’s holy name I pray. Amen

Asher (AsherB)

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2 Chronicles 1-2; Hebrews 8; Amos 2; Psalm 145

Psalms 145 is full of praises. Praises for God’s goodness, mercy, kindness, and greatness. It says,

“Every day I will bless you and praise your name forever and ever. Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised, and his greatness is unsearchable” (Psalms 145:2-3),

and

“The Lord is good to all, and his mercy is over all that he has made” (Psalms 145:9).

Psalms once again sets an excellent template for how I should go about praising God. It is important to always keep God’s goodness and grace in mind and to thank him for it. It is because of God’s goodness and grace that he established Christ’s ministry. The book of Hebrew’s says,

“But as it is, Christ has obtained a ministry that is much more excellent than the old as the covenant he mediates is better, since it is enacted on better promises. For if that first covenant had been faultless, there would have been no occasion to look for a second” (Hebrews: 8:6-7).

Because of God’s goodness, he put Christ’s ministry in place to save us from our sins. The praises in Psalms help me to remember to thank God for everything that he has done for me, and to praise him for his goodness and grace.

Dear God, thank You for sending Jesus to die on the cross for my sins. Thank you for extending grace and mercy towards me when I do not deserve it. Your goodness is wonderful, and I want to praise you for it. In Jesus’s holy name I pray, Amen.

Asher (AsherB)

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2 Kings 19; Hebrews 1; Hosea 12; Psalms 135-136

When Judah was in danger of being overthrown by Sennacherib King Hezekiah turned to God for help and relief. He said,

“Incline your ear, O Lord, and hear, open your eyes, O Lord, and see; and hear the words of Sennacherib, which he has sent to mock the living God” (2 Kings 19:16).

When he had nowhere else to go, he turned to God and asked him for relief from his afflictions. It is also important to remember to pray fervently during times of peace as well as turmoil. Psalms 135 and 136 provide examples of giving God praise during peace, rather than just during trouble. They say,

“Praise the Lord! Praise the name of the Lord, give praise, O servants of the Lord, who stand in the house of the Lord, in the courts of the house of our God!” (Psalm 135:1-2).

and

“Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever” (Psalm 136:1).

All three of these passages provide examples of people turning to God, either for help or to thank and praise Him for His goodness. All three of these types of prayer are important, I shouldn’t just turn to God in times or trouble and ignore Him when I think everything’s fine. My relationship with God is something that should grow throughout all seasons of my life, and that includes when I’m going through trials and when I’m cruising through life seemingly unfazed. God governs all aspects of my life, and I should turn to Him continuously to give praise and ask for guidance and wisdom.

Dear God, thank you that You govern all aspects of my life, not just the good and not just the bad. Thank you that I can lean on You for support during times of trouble. Please help me to turn to You even when I’m not experiencing a trial so that I can praise You for Your grace and goodness. In Jesus’s holy name I pray. Amen.

Asher (AsherB)

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