Day 194: God Gave Them Up

The Daily Word: Saturday, July 13th, 2019
1 Chronicles 15:1-16:36
Romans 1:18-32
Psalm 10:1-15
Proverbs 19:6-7
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
Therefore God also gave them up to uncleanness, in the lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their bodies among themselves… – Rom 1:24

Paul shared a unique discovery with the church at Rome. If our disobedience becomes too extreme, it is within God’s right to “give us up” to our uncleanness and the lust of our hearts! If our hearts burn and our bodies lust for something or someone other than God – if we choose to be “unclean” even though we know of the righteousness of God – God will not interfere with our choice. He will “give us up.” He will hold true to His promise that we are free to make our own decisions.

Here is what is absolutely key to understand: God does not want to give you up! However, He loves you so much that He gave you free will to make your own choices. After all, if we didn’t have free will, and God forced us to love Him, that would not be love; it would be abuse! You have a choice! Are you choosing God?

God will not stop you from doing the “wrong thing,” because that would not be freedom. That does not, however, make the wrong things right. Thank God His Holy Spirit dwells within us, and all around us, as a Witness. Thank God His Holy Spirit will caution us, warn us, and prime us, long before our hearts become so hard that God “gives us up” to uncleanness. When we ignore the promptings of the Holy Spirit, our hearts become hard; but if we remain open to His leading, our hearts will stay open and fixed on the Lord Jesus Christ.

Prayer:

Father, save me from uncleanness all around me on every side. Rescue me from the lusts of my heart. Spare me from the temptation to dishonor my body with impure substances and unholy desires. I want to live for You, in Jesus’ name!

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© Michael D. White, 2019. All rights reserved.

Day 193: Not From, But To

The Daily Word: Friday, July 12th, 2019
1 Chronicles 12:19-14:17
Romans 1:1-17
Psalm 9:13-20
Proverbs 19:4-5
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
Paul, a bondservant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated to the gospel of God… – Rom 1:1

You have not only been separated from the world; you have also been separated to the gospel! God doesn’t just call you to shun the world; He calls you to embrace Heaven!

Don’t waste time focusing on what you can’t do because you follow Jesus. Dwell on what you can do because you have a relationship with God. You can live without fear because you know you have eternal life. You can live blessed because God will “command the blessing on you…in all to which you set your hand” (Deut 28:8). Never forget that salvation is a gift, not a curse! Being saved doesn’t mean a mediocre life sapped of fun; it means a joyful and exhilarating journey with the God of creation!

Prayer:

Father, thank You for saving me! Thank You for separating me to the gospel. I’m not missing out on a thing. I am gaining all things (Rom 8:28) in Jesus Christ!

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© Michael D. White, 2019. All rights reserved.

Day 192: The Spirit Came

The Daily Word: Thursday, July 11th, 2019
1 Chronicles 11:1-12:18
Acts 28:1-31
Psalm 9:1-12
Proverbs 19:1-3
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
Then the Spirit came upon Amasai, chief of the captains, and he said: “We are yours, O David; We are on your side, O son of Jesse! Peace, peace to you, And peace to your helpers! For your God helps you.” So David received them, and made them captains of the troop. – 1 Chron 12:18

The Spirit came upon (i.e. clothed[1]) Amasai when he stepped out to do what God had called him to do. God called him to go join David; and as he did, the Holy Spirit strengthened him to say what needed to be said, and do what needed to be done!

Do you need a touch from Heaven? Do you want to be filled with strength from above? Step out and do what God has called you to do, and the Holy Spirit will meet you in that place.

Prayer:

Father, make me obedient. I need strength from Heaven! And I know the strength I need will come as I exercise obedience. Help me to step out and do what You have called me to do, in Jesus’ name.

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© Michael D. White, 2019. All rights reserved.


[1] Strong’s H3847

Day 191: Angelic Visitation

The Daily Word: Wednesday, July 10th, 2019
1 Chronicles 9:1-10:14
Acts 27:21-44
Psalm 8:1-9
Proverbs 18:23-24
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
For there stood by me this night an angel of the God to whom I belong and whom I serve… – Acts 27:23

Have you ever had an angelic visitation? At crucial moments, God blesses His people with angelic encounters. Before Jesus was born, an angel announced His coming to His mother Mary (Lk 1:26). After Jesus was born, angels proclaimed the good news to shepherd outside Bethlehem in the fields (Lk 2:8). When Joseph needed to flee Israel in order to keep his family safe, angels visited him and told him where to go (Matt 2:13, 19)!

In Acts 27, Paul receives an angelic visitation in a crucial moment. Notice the preconditions to Paul’s angelic visitation: he belonged to God, and he served Him (v 23). If you want a visitation from God, you have to belong to Him and serve Him! Verse 21 also gives us a key to Paul’s condition when he received an angelic visitation: “But after a long abstinence from food, then Paul stood in the midst of them…”

Paul was in the middle of a storm, about to be shipwrecked, and he needed to know what to do! So he prayed and fasted. He served God by being a witness to the people around Him! And in the place, God sent a messenger from Heaven.

What are you in the middle of? Are you praying and fasting, and asking God to show up? Are you serving Him right where you are, and expecting Heaven to move on your behalf?

Prayer:

Father, I am asking for an angelic visitation: not simply so I can say I’ve had one, but so that I can hear from You! I know You will show up and tell me exactly what to do; and I am willing to position myself to make it happen through service, fasting and prayer. Speak to me, in Jesus’ name!

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© Michael D. White, 2019. All rights reserved.

Day 190: Ready for War

The Daily Word: Tuesday, July 9th, 2019
1 Chronicles 7:1-8:40
Acts 27:1-20
Psalm 7:1-17
Proverbs 18:22
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
And with them, by their generations, according to their fathers’ houses, were thirty-six thousand troops ready for war; for they had many wives and sons. – 1 Chron 7:4

These men of valor had families. They had wives, children, and jobs! Yet they were also “troops ready for war.” Their families didn’t distract them from being ready to fight; their families forced them to make readiness an absolute priority.

Are you ready for war? Under the Old Covenant, these men did battle with physical enemies. Under our New Covenant, we must be ready for spiritual battles! Our battlefield is prayer; and we must be “troops ready for war” in and out of season. When the enemy attacks, are you ready? Are you prayed up? Do you know what God is saying to you in this season of your life, and are you ready to step out on His word, regardless of the obstacles you might face? Do you spend time in prayer every day, releasing the word and will of God over your life, and beating back the work of the devil?

Your prayers matter. There are eternal consequences at stake! Prayer is non-negotiable: you cannot hope to be victorious in this life without it!

Prayer:

Father, make me ready for war. I am ready to “bind the strong man” (Matt 12:29). I refuse to let the enemy take territory that belongs to You! Help me to make prayer a non-negotiable priority in my life, in Jesus’ name.

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© Michael D. White, 2019. All rights reserved.

Day 189: Confidence In Prayer

The Daily Word: Monday, July 8th, 2019
1 Chronicles 5:18-6:81
Acts 26:1-32
Psalm 6:1-10
Proverbs 18:20-21
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
The Lord has heard my supplication; The Lord will receive my prayer. – Psalm 6:9

Psalm Six is one big prayer. David asks God to have mercy on him (v 2). He asks God to deliver him from his enemies (v 4). He confesses to God that he is weary (v 6), and the attacks of his enemies are almost more than he can bear (v 7)! But perhaps most significant is how David ends his conversation with God: “The Lord has heard my supplication. The Lord will receive my prayer” (v 9).

David had absolute confidence that whenever he prayed, the Lord would receive his prayer! He had complete assurance that when he made supplication to God (i.e. when he asked for something), God would hear and respond! What would happen in your prayer life if you had the same boldness as David? What prayers have you been keeping to yourself because you’re not sure how God is going to respond?

Don’t ever get caught thinking your prayers are irrelevant. God hears! He receives. He cares.

Prayer:

Father, give me boldness in prayer. Help me to make requests with confidence! As much as I want to pray, You want to respond all the more.

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© Michael D. White, 2019. All rights reserved.

Day 188: Call On Him!

The Daily Word: Sunday, July 7th, 2019
1 Chronicles 4:5-5:17
Acts 25:1-27
Psalm 5:1-12
Proverbs 18:19
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
And Jabez called on the God of Israel saying, “Oh, that You would bless me indeed, and enlarge my territory, that Your hand would be with me, and that You would keep me from evil, that I may not cause pain!” So God granted him what he requested. – 1 Chron 4:10

Jabez called on the God of Israel, and God granted him what he requested.

To “call on” God is the Hebrew qara (Strong’s H7121), which means to summon or invite. When you invite God into your life, He answers! When you ask Him to intervene, He responds to your request.

Where do you need help? Have you called on God? Have you invited Him into that area of your life? Call on Him, and watch the answers to your prayers come to life!

Prayer:

Father, I invite you into my life like never before. I don’t want to hide anything from You. I declare that no area of my life is blocked off from You! Thank You for rushing to my defense when I call on You in Jesus’ name.

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© Michael D. White, 2019. All rights reserved.

Day 187: Your Defender

The Daily Word: Saturday, July 6th, 2019
1 Chronicles 2:18-4:4
Acts 24:1-27
Psalm 4:1-8
Proverbs 18:16-18
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
Then Paul, after the governor had nodded to him to speak, answered: “Inasmuch as I know that you have been for many years a judge of this nation, I do the more cheerfully answer for myself…” – Acts 24:10

Paul was being accused of sedition: speech or conduct meant to incite rebellion. The Jewish leaders took Paul before Felix, the governor, to make their case. If one thing went wrong, Paul was a dead man! This was a sentence punishable by death.

But Paul “cheerfully” defended himself. He was not scared. He was not nervous! He was cheerful – “full of good cheer and good courage” (Strong’s G2115) – because he knew God was on his side.

When God defends you, you have nothing to fear. When God defends you, you will be full of joy! What God defends you, what can man do to you? 

The Lord is on my side; I will not fear. What can man do to me? – Ps 118:6

Prayer:
Father, thank You for defending me. I know I have nothing to fear because You are with me, and You are for me! Thank You for Your never-stopping, never-ending love, in Jesus’ name!

 

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© Michael D. White, 2019. All rights reserved.

Day 186: There Was A Time

The Daily Word: Friday, July 5th, 2019
1 Chronicles 1:1-2:17
Acts 23:11-35
Psalm 3:1-8
Proverbs 18:14-15
For full text click here.
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Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
The sons of Judah were Er, Onan, and Shelah. These three were born to him by the daughter of Shua, the Canaanitess. Er, the firstborn of Judah, was wicked in the sight of the Lord; so He killed him. – 1 Chron 2:3

There was a time when wickedness was immediately punished by death. There was a time when God killed anyone who transgressed His word, the moment they went astray! There was a time when nobody got a second chance, no mater how small the mistake!

Aren’t you glad you don’t live in that time? Aren’t you glad Jesus already died on the Cross for your wickedness, so God can be patient with you? God’s mercy and goodness have been activated by the blood of Jesus:

Or do you despise the riches of His goodness, forbearance, and longsuffering, not knowing that the goodness of God leads you to repentance? – Rom 2:4

On this side of the Cross, God is patient with us!

For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. – 1 Tim 2:3-4

Prayer:

Father, thank You for Your patience with me. Thank You for the blood of Jesus that activates Your mercy and kindness over my life! Thank You for sparing me, in spite of my wickedness, because I believe in Jesus!

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© Michael D. White, 2019. All rights reserved.

Day 185: Your Citizenship in Heaven

The Daily Word: Thursday, July 4th, 2019
2 Kings 23:31-25:30
Acts 22:17-23:10
Psalm 2:1-12
Proverbs 18:13
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
Then immediately those who were about to examine him withdrew from him; and the commander was also afraid after he found out that he was a Roman, and because he had bound him. – Acts 22:29

A group of Roman soldiers was about to beat Paul to a pulp. The commander ordered Paul to be “examined under scourging” (v 24). In other words, they were going to whip Paul with a razor-sharp cord until the skin tore from his back. They wanted Paul to admit to something – anything – so they had a reason to punish him!

But when they found out Paul was a Roman citizen, everything changed. The men who were about to beat him wouldn’t touch him. The commander who wanted to bring Paul to the point of death was “afraid” (v 29). Everything changed the moment Paul’s enemy found out he was a citizen!

You are a citizen of Heaven. Remind yourself of that today. Remind the enemy of that today! Satan has no right to beat you up and exercise his will on you. In fact, the enemy should be afraid of you when you remind him you are a citizen of Heaven! Paul went from defeat to victory in a moment when he asserted his citizenship; and so will you.

Prayer:

Father, thank You for making me a citizen of Heaven. I don’t have to accept the enemy’s torture because I am covered by the blood of Jesus Christ. I am going to keep doing what You called me to do, because I am freed by Your grace, in Jesus’ name! 

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© Michael D. White, 2019. All rights reserved.

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