Day 337: Ready for Rebuke

The Daily Word: Thursday, December 3rd, 2020
Daniel 11:2-35
1 John 3:7-24
Psalm 122:1-9
Proverbs 29:1
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
He who is often rebuked, and hardens his neck, Will suddenly be destroyed, and that without remedy. – Prov. 29:1

God is gentle. He is kind! He will “rebuke” us in an effort to get us back on the right path. He will send other people to “rebuke” us so that iron can sharpen iron (Prov. 27:7) and we can be made stronger and wiser by wise counsel. “Rebuke” is not a bad thing! “Rebuke” can be holy and healthy correction that comes from a place of love.

But destruction is a bad thing. God does not destroy us; the enemy does. When we resist rebuke and become hard and stubborn, we continue to wander in the wrong direction. When we refuse to have our course corrected by God, we will move outside of God’s protection. The enemy will have access to us because we refuse to be ushered back under the protection of our ever-loving Father in Heaven.

Allow God to correct you. Don’t run from it! Run to it. It is far better to be rebuked by God, than to be destroyed by the enemy because we refuse to correct our course.

Prayer:

Father, thank You for leading and guiding me! I am 100% open to Your rebuke, Your wisdom and Your direction. I am so grateful for Your presence in my life, in Jesus’ name.

© Michael D. White, 2020. All rights reserved.

Day 336: The Last Hour

The Daily Word: Wednesday, December 2nd, 2020
Daniel 9:1-11:1
1 John 2:18-3:6
Psalm 121:1-8
Proverbs 28:27-28
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
Little children, it is the last hour… – 1 Jn. 2:18

We are in the “last hour.” This is not the time to play around. This is not the time to delay in making a decision for Jesus Christ. Why? Because Jesus will come back suddenly and soon:

Then two men will be in the field: one will be taken and the other left. Two women will be grinding at the mill: one will be taken and the other left. Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour your Lord is coming. – Matt. 24:40-42

Jesus is coming back! That will be bad news if you don’t know Him, but good news if you have made Him “your Lord” (Matt. 24:42). There is a world out there that needs to know about Jesus. Will you join me in telling them?

Prayer:
Father, thank You for opening my eyes to the reality that this is the last hour! There is no more time to spare, and no more time to waste. Help me to get to work winning souls for You, in Jesus’ name!

© Michael D. White, 2020. All rights reserved.

Day 335: The Whole World

The Daily Word: Tuesday, December 1st, 2020
Daniel 8:1-27
1 John 2:1-17
Psalm 120:1-7
Proverbs 28:25-26
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world. – 1 Jn. 2:2

You believe in Jesus. Well done! But you cannot stop there. The ultimate goal of your life is not to go to Heaven alone. It is to bring other people with you. Jesus died for your sins, yes; but “not for [yours] only but also for the whole world.”

There is an entire world out there that needs to hear about Jesus. Are you willing to go? Are you willing to be sent? Are you willing to hear God and to preach His word? Salvation is available to everyone. But it is not active for everyone. Yet. And you are the one God has chosen to let them know.

Prayer:

Father, send me. I am willing! I want to tell the world just how much You love them, in Jesus’ name.

© Michael D. White, 2020. All rights reserved.

Day 334: The Safest Place

The Daily Word: Monday, November 30th, 2020
Daniel 7:1-28
1 John 1:1-10
Psalm 119:153-176
Proverbs 28:23-24
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
This is the message which we have heard from Him and declare to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all. – 1 John 1:5

When you are “in Him,” darkness no longer has access to you. Because “in Him is no darkness at all.” Darkness is not allowed in God! Demons are not allowed in God! So when you position yourself in Christ by declaring you believe in Jesus, you become “hidden with Christ in God” (Col. 3:3)! And that means you no longer have to fear anything; because nothing that is not of God can touch you any more.

When you feel afraid: run to God. His presence is the safest place! That is why Scripture says, “The name of the Lord is a strong tower; the righteous run to it and are safe” (Prov. 18:10). But if you want to stay safe and sound, you must run to Him. Don’t keep Him at arm’s length! God is not safest at a distance! He wants to live life with you up close and personal, and keep you “under His wings” (Ps. 91:4).

No matter what you’re facing today: run to God! He can handle it, and He will keep you safe.

Prayer:

Father, thank You that I don’t have to be afraid anymore. No matter what comes my way, I will run to You. You are my shelter. My strong tower! I will abide under Your shadow. There is no safer place to be, in Jesus’ name.

© Michael D. White, 2020. All rights reserved.

Day 333: God’s Timing ≠Your Timing

The Daily Word: Sunday, November 29th, 2020
Daniel 6:1-28
2 Peter 3:1-18
Psalm 119:129-152
Proverbs 28:21-22
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance. – 2 Pet. 3:9

God is not slack. “Slack” is the Greek braduno (Strong’s G1019), which means “delayed or slow.” In 2 Peter 3, Scripture is specifically referencing Jesus’ promise to come again: for the righteous to be taken up into heaven and for the “ungodly” to be cast into hell (v 7). Just because Jesus is taking longer than you expect does not mean He is no longer coming! Because “with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day” (v 8). What you perceive as an unnecessary delay is actually His undeserved mercy.

God’s timing is not your timing. He doesn’t delay! He doesn’t make mistakes. He is always right on time. So if you’re waiting for an answer to prayer, does it mean that He hasn’t heard? Certainly not. It simply means that God will not be rushed. He wants to build your faith in Him in ways that would be impossible if you immediately got what you wanted.

God is not slack. He does not delay! Submit to His timing and His will, and watch how absolutely joyful your life becomes in Him.

Prayer:

Father, help me to relax and take my time. I submit to Your will! I submit to Your purposes and Your plans for my life. You have full permission to work on Your schedule. I will no longer pretend to pressure You to work on mine, in Jesus’ name.

© Michael D. White, 2020. All rights reserved.

Day 332: Defense to Double-Mindedness

The Daily Word: Saturday, November 28th, 2020
Daniel 5:1-31
2 Peter 2:1-22
Psalm 119:113-128
Proverbs 28:19-20
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
I hate the double-minded, but I love Your law. – Ps. 119:113

To be double-minded is to be divided in heart or mind. To waver in your faith. To be unsure about what is next, or the right path to follow. The Psalmist hated the double minded. But through Scripture, the Holy Spirit also offers a prescription whenever we feel divided and unsure of what to do next.

Love God’s law. Fall in love with His word all over again! When you know God’s word you know His heart! You know His will and His plan for your life. And when you love God’s law, you will never be double-minded again. And here is why that is so important:

But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways. – James 1:6-8

When you love God’s law, you will be filled with faith – not doubt – to ask for wisdom from God. You will know what to ask and what to do next. And when you reach that place of asking in faith because you love God’s law, you will start to see answers to your prayers everywhere you go.

Prayer:

Father, I want to love Your law! I want to fall in love with Your word all over again. I know the best way to get to know You is to get to know Your word. You are Your word. Make me firm and resolute in every decision. Help me to always lean on You for wisdom, direction, and guidance, in Jesus’ name.

© Michael D. White, 2020. All rights reserved.

Day 331: How To Fix Your Problems

The Daily Word: Friday, November 27th, 2020
Daniel 4:1-37
2 Peter 1:1-21
Psalm 119:97-112
Proverbs 28:17-18
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
For he who lacks these things is shortsighted, even to blindness, and has forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins. – 2 Pet. 1:8

First Scripture lays out a set of requirements to be Christlike: “add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love” (vv 5-7). We should be virtuous as Christians. We should know who God is through His word! We should have self control. Perseverance. Godliness! We should display brotherly kindness to the people we meet, and love to the people whom God has put in our paths to love.

But what if your life doesn’t look like that? What should you do? If your life isn’t fruitful, the answer is not to try harder! No, no no. This is not about you! Verse 8 diagnoses our condition: we have “forgotten that [we were] cleansed from…old sins.”

The remedy to sin is not to try and fix it on your own! It is to remind yourself that you are forgiven. To remember that you were cleansed from your old sins![1] And the more you remind yourself that you are forgiven, the more you will find yourself walking in holiness without really trying at all. The Holy Spirit will flood your life like never before, and put you back on the path called “God’s best.”

Prayer:

Father, thank You for the Gospel! Thank You that I am forgiven of all my sins: past, present and future. Grace is not a license to sin! But it certainly is a reason to remind myself that the blood of Jesus makes me clean.

© Michael D. White, 2020. All rights reserved.

[1] “As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us.” – Ps. 103:12

Day 330: Staying Close to God

The Daily Word: Thursday, November 26th, 2020
Daniel 2:24-3:30
1 Peter 4:7-5:14
Psalm 119:81-96
Proverbs 28:15-16
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
But as for me, this secret has not been revealed to me because I have more wisdom than anyone living, but for our sakes who make known the interpretation to the king, and that you may know the thoughts of your heart. – Dan. 2:30

Daniel needed to interpret a dream. And he needed to do it quickly! Nebuchadnezzar was going to kill Daniel if he couldn’t tell the king what he had dreamt (without any hints!) and what the dream meant. So Daniel sought the Lord. He shut himself away and listened for God’s voice, and guess what happened?

“Then the secret was revealed to Daniel in a night vision. So Daniel blessed the God of heaven.” – Dan. 2:19

God didn’t reveal the dream to Daniel because he was smarter than anyone else! He revealed it to Daniel because Daniel was closer to God than anyone else. Daniel was a man of prayer! Daniel was a man who sought the Lord. So when the king burdened Daniel with an impossible request, God delivered.

You don’t need more wisdom. You need the presence of Jesus more than ever! As you spend more time with Him, He will tell you what you need to know.

Prayer:

Father, keep me close to You! I know that my success in this life does not depend on how wise I am; it depends on how close I stay to You. Help me to seek You with my whole heart and never turn away, in Jesus’ name!

© Michael D. White, 2020. All rights reserved.

Day 329: He Would Not Defile Himself

The Daily Word: Wednesday, November 25th, 2020
Daniel 1:1-2:23
1 Peter 3:8-4:6
Psalm 119:65-80
Proverbs 28:14
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s delicacies, nor with the wine which he drank; therefore he requested of the chief of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself. – Dan. 1:8

Jerusalem was overrun by Babylon. But in the midst of captivity, Daniel found favor. The king of Babylon thought Daniel had “ability to serve in the king’s palace.” So the king offered him the finest food and wine in all of Babylon along with “three years training” (v 5) so that Daniel would be ready for a position in the king’s administration.

Daniel was offered the best Babylon had to offer! But he refused. He “would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s delicacies, nor with the wine which he drank.” Daniel refused to spoil and comfort himself with the pleasures of this world. Why? Because it would take his eyes off God.

Love for this world corrupts the love of the Father in you (1 John 2:15). Daniel was a man of prayer. He, “knelt down on his knees three times [a] day, and prayed and gave thanks before his God” (Dan. 6:10). Daniel’s pleasure was in the Lord! And he refused to partake of any delicacy that would challenge the reality that God was the sweetest thing in Daniel’s life.

If it will distract you from God, say no. If it will make you love the world more, say no! You are not of this world. You are a child of the King of Heaven. Do not defile yourself with anything that indicates anything less.

Prayer:

Father, my joy is in You! My hope is in You. You are the sweetest One, and there is no pleasure of this world that can compete with You. I refuse to be defiled with the portions of this world. I will live for my reward in Heaven, in Jesus’ name!!

© Michael D. White, 2020. All rights reserved.

Day 328: Life in the River

The Daily Word: Tuesday, November 24th, 2020
Ezekiel 47:1-48:35
1 Peter 2:11-3:7
Psalm 119:49-64
Proverbs 28:12-13
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
And it shall be that every living thing that moves, wherever the rivers go, will live. There will be a very great multitude of fish, because these waters go there; for they will be healed, and everything will live wherever the river goes. – Ezek. 47:9

Not every “living thing that moves” is alive. But “wherever the river goes,” anything in its path will live!

The “river” represents Spirit-filled life: a lifestyle in which you are constantly led by the Holy Spirit. Constantly relying on Him for next steps. Consistently leaning into His presence. Always inclining an ear to “hear what the Spirit says to the churches” (Rev. 3:6)!

Is your life feeling dry? Dead?! You need more Holy Spirit. Because wherever the river goes, there will be healing and life. There will be provision! There will be peace.

Prayer:

Holy Spirit, come! I want to live my life in partnership with You. I’m asking You to move through my life like never before. Touch me like never before! Lead me and teach me like never before. I am so grateful for Your presence, in Jesus’ name!

© Michael D. White, 2020. All rights reserved.

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