May 21 Bible reading

21 05 2022

May 21  Psalm 65  John 12:12-36  1 Samuel 8; 9; 10:1-8

Please read the suggested passages, prayerfully consider them, and the questions below. My comments here may be helpful after those moments. The suggested daily reading is for the purpose of reading through the whole Bible within a year.

Reading the Bible is helpful in taking the next steps to follow Jesus. It may not be easy and yet it can be rewarding. Digging into Scripture alongside people you know is a life-giving way to pursue answers together. We discover the love that God has for us has been expressed through Jesus.

  • What’s the plain simple truth of the verses you read?
  • Based on today’s reading, what is one thing God is saying to you?
  • What should you do about that truth?

May 21  Psalm 65  John 12:12-36  1 Samuel 8; 9; 10:1-8

Psalm 65

In the power and majesty of the earth’s environment, David sees the presence of the living God at work, caring for what He created by design. Psalm 65 has David singing thanks to God, the hope of everyone, for answering prayer. Verses 3 and 4 connect so beautifully with verse 8. Have you had this experience with God?

John 12:12-36

Jesus calls people to receive eternal life by following Him. He predicts His own death and resurrection, explaining its purpose. Gentiles who had come to Jerusalem for Passover witness a dialogue between Jesus and Father God. There is a purpose which includes drawing people into this relationship between Jesus and the Father…this inclusion of all through Jesus the Passover Lamb into loving worship of Father God.

1 Samuel 8; 9; 10:1-8

The Israelites grow weary of the sins of the sons of the priest Samuel and ask for a king to rule them, “like all the other nations have.” This is a rejection of God as their King. Saul is chosen. Responding to Saul’s insecurity, Samuel predicts the Spirit God coming upon him and changing him.





May 2022 thoughts

20 05 2022

We live in a city with gun violence and tragic loss of life. I have heard the gunshots and seen the bloodshed, but I do not worry about someone coming to kill me because of the color of my skin. I am beyond grieved and angered by any racially motivated killing. I condemn it. My family and I love, serve, and pray for our neighbors where we are minorities as white people. We are trying to do anything we can to be a comfort and strength to our friends and neighbors who may feel pain and trauma at the news of racially motivated killing.
Please allow me to share some thoughts.

God hears the cry of each person who is murdered, and feels our pain, it angers him, and God commands it to stop, Genesis 4:10, Exodus 20:13. God says that “murder pollutes the land” and must be punished, Numbers 35:33. There is hope for someone who has committed murder to be completely changed for the good by Jesus, Acts 9:1-31.

A life of goodness, peace, and joy is what we should be pursuing, helping as many as possible to enjoy the same, Romans 14:17, Matthew 6:33.
God makes beautiful people who are better together.
We value the racial and socioeconomic diversity of Baltimore city and have a particular heart for a local church culture of celebrated equality and mutual respect.

We are following the example of the Christian church in Antioch which became a cohesive healthy spiritual family of Jesus followers, as seen in Acts 11:19-30. They did not allow unique characteristics of race, ethnicity, culture, economy, or education to keep them from being a unified group. They took action to help others across such lines. We come together and build relationships with each other as a church family where each person has value, identity, and purpose, as seen in 1 Timothy 3:15, 5:1-2, and 1 Corinthians 12:16-17. The purpose of God includes people of every culture and ethnicity, Revelation 7:9.

Let’s listen to each other with an intent to understand. This is a way to show love. Let’s show such loving respect to each other with particular sensitivity to anyone who may be feeling such pain. Please be careful to avoid making assumptions and saying something careless. Check-in with your friends and neighbors, and be alright if they don’t feel like talking. Be a good friend. Be a good neighbor. Treat everyone in the way you want to be treated. Love gives.





May 20 Bible reading

20 05 2022

May 20  Proverbs 12:18-27  John 11:45-57; 12:1-11  1 Samuel 5; 6; 7

Please read the suggested passages, prayerfully consider them, and the questions below. My comments here may be helpful after those moments. The suggested daily reading is for the purpose of reading through the whole Bible within a year.

Reading the Bible is helpful in taking the next steps to follow Jesus. It may not be easy and yet it can be rewarding. Digging into Scripture alongside people you know is a life-giving way to pursue answers together. We discover the love that God has for us has been expressed through Jesus.

  • What’s the plain simple truth of the verses you read?
  • Based on today’s reading, what is one thing God is saying to you?
  • What should you do about that truth?

May 20  Proverbs 12:18-27  John 11:45-57; 12:1-11  1 Samuel 5; 6; 7

Proverbs 12:18-27

Encouragement brings valuable help. Wise words may bring healing. Let’s choose to speak in this way to each other. This is how we become “life-giving relationships” with each other. Your quality of life will improve when you follow through with this decision.

John 11:45-57; 12:1-11

When Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead, the public awareness of Him went to a whole new level. The Jewish leaders saw Jesus as a threat to their way of life. They did not recognize Him to be the Way to a new life here and now, and the Way to eternal life. This group of leaders planned to kill Jesus and Lazarus, out of concern for defending their way of life. Many believed in Jesus because He raised Lazarus from the dead. Jesus offered eternal life to all who would believe in Him as Savior.

1 Samuel 5; 6; 7

The Ark of the Covenant was an important God designed piece of furniture in the place of worship of Yahweh. When the Philistines captured it they saw their own idol fallen face down before it repeatedly. These events helped the Israelites forsake their idols and return to the worship of Yahweh. Samuel led them in this return to a lifestyle of worshipping Yahweh. There is one true living God.





May 19 Bible reading

19 05 2022

May 19  Psalm 64  John 11:1-44  1 Samuel 2:27-36; 3; 4  – Happy Birthday Rebecca! You are the love of my life.

Please read the suggested passages, prayerfully consider them, and the questions below. My comments here may be helpful after those moments. The suggested daily reading is for the purpose of reading through the whole Bible within a year.

Reading the Bible is helpful in taking the next steps to follow Jesus. It may not be easy and yet it can be rewarding. Digging into Scripture alongside people you know is a life-giving way to pursue answers together. We discover the love that God has for us has been expressed through Jesus.

  • What’s the plain simple truth of the verses you read?
  • Based on today’s reading, what is one thing God is saying to you?
  • What should you do about that truth?

May 19  Psalm 64  John 11:1-44  1 Samuel 2:27-36; 3; 4

Psalm 64

With enemies plotting against him, David sings about his faith that God will deliver him from their attack. He believes that in this he will see others respond to God as well. In this way, David sings about purpose coming from his troubled days. We should carefully consider the purpose of God, even in our difficulties.

John 11:1-44

Lazarus, a friend of Jesus, was sick and dying. When word reached Jesus, He predicted a miracle for Lazarus that would further prove His identity as Messiah. After the death of Lazarus, people are grieving despite the prediction of Jesus. We see the frustration of Jesus with their lack of faith. We also see the empathy of Jesus with their suffering. Jesus brought his friend Lazarus back from the dead. He explained that this miracle would help them believe in His identity as Messiah, the Savior of all who would believe and receive eternal life through Him. This same Jesus is alive today, offering eternal life to all who will believe.

1 Samuel 2:27-36; 3; 4

God spoke to Eli the priest, “I will honor those who honor Me, and I will despise those who think lightly of Me.” Eli had been allowing his sons to violate the place of worship. As a result, God brought punishment on his family, replaced him with Samuel, and brought judgment on the nation of Israel. Samuel heard the voice of God and obeyed. “As Samuel grew up, the Lord was with him, and everything Samuel said proved to be reliable.” 1 Samuel 3:19





May 18 Bible reading

18 05 2022

May 18  Psalm 63  John 10:22-42  1 Samuel 1; 2:1-26

Please read the suggested passages, prayerfully consider them, and the questions below. My comments here may be helpful after those moments. The suggested daily reading is for the purpose of reading through the whole Bible within a year.

Reading the Bible is helpful in taking the next steps to follow Jesus. It may not be easy and yet it can be rewarding. Digging into Scripture alongside people you know is a life-giving way to pursue answers together. We discover the love that God has for us has been expressed through Jesus.

  • What’s the plain simple truth of the verses you read?
  • Based on today’s reading, what is one thing God is saying to you?
  • What should you do about that truth?

May 18  Psalm 63  John 10:22-42  1 Samuel 1; 2:1-26

Psalm 63

David sings about desiring the presence of God and finding the love of God to be better than anything else in life. David finds God to be helpful even when enemies are plotting against him. He made a life-long commitment to serve God. Singing about this helps us in prayer and meditation. It improves our quality of life.

John 10:22-42

Jesus again reveals Himself to be the Good Shepherd and their Messiah, offering eternal life. He describes believers as people who hear His voice and follow Him. Many people saw Jesus fulfill what John had predicted about Him. They saw Jesus perform miracles. They believed in Jesus as their Messiah. We should follow in their example.

1 Samuel 1; 2:1-26

Hannah dedicated the life of her son Samuel to the service of God because his birth was a miracle answer to prayer. God blessed Hanna for this decision. The priest Eli had sons who had no respect for God. They sinned against God. Samuel grew up in this setting.





May 17 Bible reading

17 05 2022

May 17  Psalm 62  John 9:35-41; 10:1-21  Ruth 3; 4

Please read the suggested passages, prayerfully consider them, and the questions below. My comments here may be helpful after those moments. The suggested daily reading is for the purpose of reading through the whole Bible within a year.

Reading the Bible is helpful in taking the next steps to follow Jesus. It may not be easy and yet it can be rewarding. Digging into Scripture alongside people you know is a life-giving way to pursue answers together. We discover the love that God has for us has been expressed through Jesus.

  • What’s the plain simple truth of the verses you read?
  • Based on today’s reading, what is one thing God is saying to you?
  • What should you do about that truth?

May 17  Psalm 62  John 9:35-41; 10:1-21  Ruth 3; 4

Psalm 62

David’s song suggests that we tell God what is on our hearts, and choose to trust God completely. David finds God to be a source of strength and peace even when He is waiting to see God take action on his behalf. How we deal with delay and disappointment is important. This is where we have an opportunity to grow in faith.

John 9:35-41; 10:1-21

Jesus described those who could not see Him as Messiah, as being spiritually blind. Jesus described Himself as a Good Shepherd who was willing to sacrifice His own life for His sheep. Jesus described our enemy’s plan to steal, kill, and destroy in contrast to His own plan to provide a rich and satisfying life. From this, we should learn the value of a Christ-centered life. Daily we should be considering, “What does Jesus think about this?”

Ruth 3; 4

Boaz and Ruth had each lived a virtuous and faithful life. They found redemption in a healthy marriage. God blessed this marriage. The genealogy of Christ is traced through it. They had experienced disappointment and delay. They chose to have faith in God. This choice improved the quality of their marriage.





May 16 Bible reading

16 05 2022

May 16  Proverbs 12:8-17  John 9:1-34  Ruth 1; 2

Please read the suggested passages, prayerfully consider them, and the questions below. My comments here may be helpful after those moments. The suggested daily reading is for the purpose of reading through the whole Bible within a year.

Reading the Bible is helpful in taking the next steps to follow Jesus. It may not be easy and yet it can be rewarding. Digging into Scripture alongside people you know is a life-giving way to pursue answers together. We discover the love that God has for us has been expressed through Jesus.

  • What’s the plain simple truth of the verses you read?
  • Based on today’s reading, what is one thing God is saying to you?
  • What should you do about that truth?

May 16  Proverbs 12:8-17  John 9:1-34  Ruth 1; 2

Proverbs 12:8-17

“Healthy, stable, productive, calm when insulted, and truthful,” should describe a person who loves God and others. Wise words and hard work bring benefits and rewards. We will find the quality of our life has improved when we apply the wisdom of the proverbs.

John 9:1-34

Jesus reveals the power of God and His identity as the Messiah in healing a blind man. The Jewish leaders rejected Jesus as the Messiah. They used their Sabbath customs in their attempt to question Jesus’ claim to be the Messiah. Jesus proved that God will do miracles on the Sabbath, unrestricted by the legalistic misinterpretation of God’s word. This miracle met the need of the man whose life was changed and served as further proof of Jesus’ identity as Messiah.

Ruth 1; 2

Ruth and her mother-in-law had both been left as widows. Ruth chose to follow Naomi in her return to her homeland, Judah, and the worship of Yahweh. Ruth finds in Boaz an honorable kinsman-redeemer. Boaz recognizes the faithfulness of Ruth and calls for the blessing of God on her. They had seen the mistakes of others. They lived with faithfulness.





May 15 Bible reading

15 05 2022

May 15  Psalms 61  John 8:31-59  Judges 20; 21

Please read the suggested passages, prayerfully consider them, and the questions below. My comments here may be helpful after those moments. The suggested daily reading is for the purpose of reading through the whole Bible within a year.

Reading the Bible is helpful in taking the next steps to follow Jesus. It may not be easy and yet it can be rewarding. Digging into Scripture alongside people you know is a life-giving way to pursue answers together. We discover the love that God has for us has been expressed through Jesus.

  • What’s the plain simple truth of the verses you read?
  • Based on today’s reading, what is one thing God is saying to you?
  • What should you do about that truth?

May 15  Psalms 61  John 8:31-59  Judges 20; 21

Psalms 61

When David is overwhelmed by challenges, he sings his request of God for help and an ability to live daily aware of God’s love. David sings about a personal relationship with God where the love of God is a constant source of peace. David has learned that God is more powerful than anything else in this life. He makes a commitment to the daily worship of God.

John 8:31-59

Jesus calls His followers to a lifestyle of being faithful to His teachings. They will find freedom in this life of learning from and responding faithfully to the words of Christ. It is freedom found in a life-long commitment and devotion to Jesus. Temple leaders challenged the identity of Jesus. They looked to Abraham as a father in their faith and yet did not understand the primary life lesson of Abraham. They could not recognize Jesus as the fulfillment of the promise Yahweh God had made to Abraham. Jesus explained the truth.

Judges 20; 21

Sexual sin and murder brought about a civil war and the death of thousands. The Israelites bore the consequences of living a life of doing whatever they wanted. When people choose to live independently of God’s will destruction follows. Humans can be convinced they are doing right and yet be completely wrong. This is one reason God has provided objective truth in Scripture, the guidance of the Holy Spirit, and the Messiah Jesus Christ.





May 14 Bible reading

14 05 2022

May 14  Psalm 60:5-12  John 8:12-30  Judges 18; 19

Please read the suggested passages, prayerfully consider them, and the questions below. My comments here may be helpful after those moments. The suggested daily reading is for the purpose of reading through the whole Bible within a year.

Reading the Bible is helpful in taking the next steps to follow Jesus. It may not be easy and yet it can be rewarding. Digging into Scripture alongside people you know is a life-giving way to pursue answers together. We discover the love that God has for us has been expressed through Jesus.

  • What’s the plain simple truth of the verses you read?
  • Based on today’s reading, what is one thing God is saying to you?
  • What should you do about that truth?

May 14  Psalm 60:5-12  John 8:12-30  Judges 18; 19

Psalm 60:5-12

With a poem used for teaching, David sings His request for God’s help and protection. You can also do this. It’s a helpful context for us to draw strength from our relationship with God. What have I learned about God? What have I learned about who I am in relationship to God? What does this say about me?  Considering the answers to these questions should be life-changing.

John 8:12-30

Jesus reveals and further explains His identity as Messiah and as the Son of God. Quoting Isaiah’s prophecy, Jesus calls them to eternal life through repentance and receiving this salvation by grace. Jesus predicts that some will believe His identity as Messiah when He is crucified. Jesus calls people to a point of decision, whether they will follow Him or not. This is relevant to us today. There can be a season of searching, and yet there is a time to make a decision. Will I accept Jesus or reject Jesus?

Judges 18; 19

In Judges 18 and 19, we see that when people turn away from the worship of the one true living God they degrade themselves into the worship of false things. Out of this came one of the worst sexual sins in a generation, the death of a woman, and ultimately war. Repeatedly we read stories of people who reject a relationship with God, choosing self-reliance, and who suffer the consequences of that decision.





May 13 Bible reading

13 05 2022

May 13 Psalm 60:1-4 John 7:45-53; 8:1-11 Judges 16; 17

Please read the suggested passages, prayerfully consider them, and the questions below. My comments here may be helpful after those moments. The suggested daily reading is for the purpose of reading through the whole Bible within a year.

Reading the Bible is helpful in taking the next steps to follow Jesus. It may not be easy and yet it can be rewarding. Digging into Scripture alongside people you know is a life-giving way to pursue answers together. We discover the love that God has for us has been expressed through Jesus.

• What’s the plain simple truth of the verses you read?

• Based on today’s reading, what is one thing God is saying to you?

• What should you do about that truth?

May 13 Psalm 60:1-4 John 7:45-53; 8:1-11 Judges 16; 17

Psalm 60:1-4

David sings about the way that God protects those who serve Him. The Psalms are used as a prayer book, a collection of songs, for meditation, for expression, and for learning more about our relationship with God & others. This includes the lessons learned in David’s life. He saw consequences for wrongdoing. David learned of God’s justice and mercy.

John 7:45-53; 8:1-11

The Jewish leaders are ready to arrest Jesus but Nicodemus comes to His defense. In an attempt to trap Jesus into saying something that could be used against Him, the religious leaders bring Him a woman caught in adultery to see if He would direct punishment toward her according to their customs added to God’s law. Jesus deterred them and called her to change. Jesus brought hope and new spiritual life.

Judges 16; 17

Samson had been given strength for the purpose of God. He had been raised to live by a commitment to God’s purpose. When Samson chooses to step outside his commitment to God’s purpose we see consequences. He asked God to give him the ability to punish the wicked Philistines. Idol worship continued with Micah even after he repented of theft.