Lent

Lent Devotion

1 18-Feb 11 2-Mar 21 13-Mar 31 25-Mar
2 19-Feb 12 3-Mar 22 14-Mar 32 26-Mar
3 20-Feb 13 4-Mar 23 16-Mar 33 27-Mar
4 21-Feb 14 5-Mar 24 17-Mar 34 28-Mar
5 23-Feb 15 6-Mar 25 18-Mar 35 30-Mar
6 24-Feb 16 7-Mar 26 19-Mar 36 31-Mar
7 25-Feb 17 9-Mar 27 20-Mar 37 1-Apr
8 26-Feb 18 10-Mar 28 21-Mar 38 2-Apr
9 27-Feb 19 11-Mar 29 23-Mar 39 3-Apr
10 28-Feb 20 12-Mar 30 24-Mar 40 4-Apr

2015 사순절 묵상집 (맥클린 웹에서 다운로드): 출간을 위해 만들어졌기에 보시는 순서가 날자별로 되어 있지 않습니다.

요일별 공동기도제목안내
월요일
선교지와 선교사들을 위해(멕시코 나다니엘 센터 김승석/김종희 선교사, 남아공 장용석/강준이 선교사, 니카라구아 전구/한미경 선교사, 필리핀 고영집/고순영 선교사)
화요일
미국과 한국, 북한을 위해. 알카에다와 ISIS와 보코하람의 변화를 위해. 전염병과 내란과 전쟁으로 고통 받는 나라들을 위해.
수요일
교회의 갱신과 변화를 위해. 버지니아 연회 내에 있는 교회들의 갱신과 부흥을 위해. 한인 교회들의 갱신과 변화를 위해. 지역의 형제 교회들의 부흥을 위해.
목요일
와싱톤한인교회의 여러 지체들(맥클린 캠퍼스, 센터빌 캠퍼스, VOPC, 나다니엘 센터)을 위해. 목회자들과 평신도 사역자들을 위해. 교회의 여러 가지 사역을 위해. 교회의 갱신과 변화와 열매를 위해.
금요일
질병, 관계, 진학, 직업, 경제, 신분, 신앙 등의 문제로 인해 고통 받고 있는 사람들을 위해. 고난을 제거해 주시며, 고난으로 더 깊은 믿음에 이르게 하시도록. 그러한 고통을 만들어내고 있는 불의한 제도의 변화를 위해.
토요일
주말에 있을 예배를 위해. 어린이 교회와 청소년 교회를 위해. 말씀과 예배를 섬기는 모든 사역자들을 위해. 하나님께서 높임 받으시고 성도들이 변화받는 예배가 되도록.

 

2015 Lenten Devotion (Download here)

Lenten Devotional Guide

1   Attend the Early Morning Prayer Service. The service begins at 6 am and ends by 6:30 am every day except on Sundays.

2   The door to the main sanctuary opens at 5:30 am, therefore, you can either arrive early or stay after the service to pray and meditate on a daily devotion.

3   We will be meditating on the Epistle to the Romans which is also called as “Magna Carta of Christian Gospel”. Please, read the devotion prior to the early prayer service.

4   If you are not able to attend the early prayer service, please set aside at least 30 minutes daily for devotions. You can follow the Lenten daily devotionals including PRAISE, prayer, the Scripture reading, and questions. Also, sermons from the early morning prayer services are available on the church website (including podcast).

5   While you’re following the Lenten devotional, please read “The Radical Disciple” by John Stott. During Lenten, Rev. Young Kim will be preaching based on the book.

6   Try to form a small group with others who are also meditating on the Lenten Daily Devotional. Try to meet regularly to share your spiritual journey together.

7   Plan and practice ‘fasting’ during Lent. Try to fast a meal or one day a week. You can also plan to fast a day or two during the Holy week.

8   Practice abstinence as means of spiritual discipline. Give up on things you enjoy and that gives you pleasure (ex: internet, soft drink, movies…etc).

9   As we remember the suffering of Jesus Christ, please dedicate more time and resources to look after and care for the ones who are suffering.

10 Do not let the devotions to become just a routine. It is not the action, but sincere heart and devotion that God blesses.

 

Daily Prayer Request:

 Before you begin reading the day’s devotion, ask the Holy Spirit to guide your mind and heart. Pray for the daily prayer request below as you close the devotion each day.

MONDAY

Foreign missionaries and their ministries (Mexico Nathaniel Center-Kyle & Jonghee Kim, South Africa-Yong & Juni Chang, Nicaragua-Matthew & Jennifer Jun, Philippines-Young & Soonyoung Ko)

TUESDAY

South & North Korea, America, transformation of AlQaeda, ISIS and Boko Haram, & countries suffering from civil wars and infectious diseases like Ebola.

WEDNESDAY

Renewal & transformation for the following churches: the United Methodist churches in Virginia, Korean immigrant churches in North America, neighboring and supporting churches in the area.

THURSDAY

All the laity, pastoral staff and ministries at McLean & Centreville Campus, Vision of Peace Church (English Ministry) & the Nathaniel Mission Center in Mexico.

FRIDAY

Members who are struggling with illness, relationship, business, job, legal status, and faith. Pray that the Lord will deliver them from their sufferings; also their faith will continue to grow through difficult times.

SATURDAY

All the weekend services for children, youth and adults. Pray for pastors who are presiding or preaching and may the Lord’s name be glorified and congregation be transformed through worship.

 

Day 1: February 18, 2015 (Ash Wednesday)

“Paul’s Self-Introduction”

 

PRAISE: “Open The Eyes of My Heart” by Michael W. Smith

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 1:1-7

1Paul, a servant of Christ Jesus, called to be an apostleset apartthe gospel of God—2the gospel he promised beforehandhis prophetsthe Holy Scriptures3regarding his Son, who as to his earthly lifea descendant of David,4and who through the Spirit of holiness was appointed the Son of God in power by his resurrection from the dead:Christ our Lord.

 

Meditate on the following:

According to the Roman customs of the time, the first thing to be disclosed in a letter was the name of the sender. As Apostle Paul wrote letters to the churches in Rome, he explained at great length about himself. There was no direct relationship between the Roman churches and Paul. Therefore, he had to emphasize the fact that he was called to be an apostle. In fact, there were many people who refused to recognize Paul as an apostle because he was not personally taught by Jesus like Peter or John. So he probably had to emphasize even more of his legitimacy as an apostle. (1:1)

 

  1. What do you think are the most important conditions to be called an apostle?

 

 

 

As Apostle Paul introduces himself, he briefly summarizes the gospel. The heart of the gospel is that through prophets, God promised God’s son to be born as a descendent of David and to be resurrected among the dead. Apostle Paul will explain this gospel in greater detail in the body of the letter. (1:2-4)

 

  1. Organize your thoughts as to why this is the gospel and the power of God for salvation.

 

 

PRAYER: Pray that you can truly know and believe the Lord as you journey through the Lenten Devotions for the next 40 days.

 

Day 2: Thursday, February 19, 2015

A Debt That Is Good to Have More”

 

PRAISE: “Worthy of It All” by David Brymer

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 1:8-15

14I am obligatedto Greeks and non-Greeks, both to the wise and the foolish.

 

Meditate on the following:

The Roman letters at the time followed the format where the writer first introduces himself, discloses to whom the letter is directed to, writes a greeting, and then brings out the main point of the letter. Apostle Paul added one more element before getting to the main point. He wrote a word of gratitude or a prayer for blessing the recipient. Here, Apostle Paul praises the believers of their faith and confesses his love for them. He says that he was not able to visit them not because he did not want to, but because the circumstances did not permit him to do so. As he writes this, he emphasizes again that his heart for them is true, earnest, and passionate. (1: 8-13)

 

  1. Let us think about Paul’s heart towards the churches in Rome. According to the verses 8-13, what are some of the ways Paul expresses his love for the believers in Rome?

 

 

Paul defines himself to be “obligated” to everyone. (1:14) At the time, a debt was a burden that saddled many people’s lives. So everyone knew how the debtor would feel like. Apostle Paul applies this situation in the gospel. He changes the negative connotation of this image to a positive one. The gospel refers to the “good news” that Jesus Christ died to pay the penalty for our sin so that we might become the children of God through faith.

 

  1. Who are some of the people in your life that you feel “obligated” to share the gospel with knowing that you’re also indebted by what Jesus Christ has done for you?

PRAYER: Pray that you would live as a person indebted by the gospel by first truly experiencing the salvation through Jesus Christ. Also pray for those you feel called to share the gospel with.

 

Day 3: Friday, February 20, 2015

The Righteousness Gained through the Gospel by Faith”

 

PRAISE: “All Consuming Fire” by Jesus Culture

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 1: 16-17

16For I am not ashamed of the gospel,because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes:first to the Jew,to the Gentile.17For in the gospel the righteousness of God is revealed—a righteousness that is by faithfirst to last, just as it is written: “The righteous will live by faith.”

 

 

Meditate on the following:

Today, we live in the world where many people feel ashamed of the gospel.

 

  1. What are some of the reasons & ways that one might show he/she is ashamed of the gospel?

 

 

  1. What is the reason that Paul was not ashamed of the gospel?

 

 

The phrase “in the gospel the righteousness of God is revealed” means that “God kept God’s promise to save through the gospel.” It also means that “God opened the way to become righteous in the gospel.” To be saved means to have gained righteousness before God.

 

  1. Are you righteous before God?

 

“The righteous will live by faith” (1:17) means that “Only faith will make us righteous.”

 

  1. Why is faith so important?

 

 

PRAYER: Pray that you may truly understand and believe the truth of gospel.

 

Day 4: Saturday, February 21, 2015

The Grace of Giving Over”

 

PRAISE: “Come Home Running” by Chris Tomlin

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 1:18-32

18The wrath of Godbeing revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness,19since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them.20For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made,that people are without excuse.21For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened.

 

Meditate on the following questions:

The revelation of God in creation is deliberately and expressively woven into the created world by God himself. Creation exposes to man the “power and divine nature of God” so no one can claim ignorance of God as an excuse for giving into their corrupt desires and living in sin. (1:19-23)

 

  1. Have you ever seen and felt the revelation of God in creation? If yes, what qualities of God were revealed to you through that experience?

 

  1. In what ways do people reject and dishonor God? Think of specific examples.

 

 

For those who know God, yet live by their sinful desires and greed, God gives them over to their greed. God’s act of giving over is an act of love, but His judgment at the same time. The corruption of human nature and the depravity of human society are turning this world into hell. (1: 24-32)

 

  1. In what ways “God’s giving over” an act of love? In what ways is it
    His judgment?

 

 

PRAYER: Pray for yourself and the world. Thank God for God’s patience and seek for repentance.

 

Day 5: Monday, February 23, 2015

A Sin Called Contempt of Grace”

 

PRAISE: Kindness” by Chris Tomlin

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 2:1-12

2Now we know that God’s judgment against those who do such things is based on truth.3So when you, a mere human being, pass judgment on them and yet do the same things, do you think you will escape God’s judgment?4Or do you show contempt for the richeshis kindness,patience,realizing that God’s kindness is intended to lead you to repentance?5But because of your stubbornness and your unrepentant heart, you are storing up wrath against yourself for the day of God’s wrath, when his righteous judgmentbe revealed.

 

Meditate on the following:

Many of us who allege to have faith tend to judge others. The Jews looked down and judged others because of their pride in observing the law of God. Apostle Paul criticized them by saying, “You are no different” because their lives did not actually correspond with the law. We must reflect on our lives as well.

 

  1. Do find yourself judging others? What do you tend to judge them on? In your reflection, do you find that you are also, “no different”?

 

 

Many people, in stubbornness and un-repentance, want to disregard the ‘wrath’ or ‘judgment’ from God, but Paul tells us that we can store up wrath against ourselves. We may indeed be found in Christ, but we all still sin.

 

  1. What do you think Paul means by “wrath” and “judgment” in light of God’s kindness? How do you think God has shown His kindness, forbearance, and patience?

 

 

PRAYER: Pray that the Lord would give you eyes to see other people how He sees them, remembering that He loves them the same as He loves you.

 

Day 6: Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Circumcision of the Heart”

 

PRAISE: “Give Us Clean Hands” by Chris Tomlin

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 2:13-29

28A person is not a Jew who is one only outwardly,is circumcision merely outward and physical.29No, a person is a Jew who is one inwardly; and circumcision is circumcision of the heart,the Spirit,by the written code.a person’s praise is not from other people, but from God.

 

Meditate on the following:

Once again, Apostle Paul criticizes the superficial faith of the Jews. We do not become “good” just by knowing the law, or become “holier” by being a good teacher of the law. He says that it is not just about the outward appearance, but about the heart. This is where we get the phrase, “born-again”. There are those who practice the law without knowing the heart of the law – and Paul says here that these people miss the whole point.

 

  1. Do you find yourself trying to do good things because you will look “holy” to certain people? Do you find yourself doing these things to gain God’s favor? Or because you want to serve and love Him?

 

  1. According to this passage, Paul says that it is not by our own work, but the Spirit’s work in us that we are transformed. Many of us look “Christian” on the outside, but in honesty, do you think the Lord has begun His transformational work on your heart? Does it show in your actions? How?

 

 

 

 

PRAYER: Pray that you would know deeper the heart of the law. Also pray that He would reveal to you what it means to know that it is not what we do, but what God did on the Cross that gives us His acceptance. Lastly, that the Lord would keep working on your heart to make it look like His.

 

Day 7: Wednesday, February 25, 2015
“Law Trapped in Legalism”

PRAISE: “Lead Me To The Cross” by Hillsong United

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 3:1-20

19Now we know that whatever the law says,says to those who are under the law,that every mouth may be silencedthe whole world held accountable to God.20Therefore no one will be declared righteous in God’s sight by the works of the law;, through the law we become conscious of our sin.

 

Meditate on the following:

According to this passage, Paul says that through the law, we can know what things are sins and that we are sinners. But, he goes on to say that no one is declared righteous by only doing what the law says to do.

 

  1. Think about something that you have done that you think is a sin. Can you find a passage in the Word that supports your idea that it is a sin?

 

 

 

 

 

  1. Are there times in your life where you know that you are doing things because you want to earn righteousness?

 

 

  1. More often than not, do you find yourself trying not to sin or trying to please and serve God? Do you think people who try not to sin look different than those trying to please and serve God? How so?

 

 

 

 

 

PRAYER: Pray that the Lord would help you not become legalistic, but that you would do all things out of love for Him.

 

Day 8: Thursday, February 26, 2015
Gospel Achieved What Law Could Not Achieve”

PRAISE: None But Jesus” by Hillsong

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 3:21-31

21But now apart from the law the righteousness of Godbeen made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify.22This righteousnessgiven through faith Jesus Christall who believe.is no difference between Jew and Gentile,23for all have sinnedfall short of the glory of God,24and all are justifiedby his gracethe redemptioncame by Christ Jesus.

 

Meditate on the following:

God fulfilled God’s promise of salvation by giving us Jesus Christ as a sacrifice. Jesus is called an atoning sacrifice because He took the place and the judgment that we were supposed to take. That is why we say that He made a way for us! Without Jesus, we could not be counted as righteous. Only the righteous can live in right relationship with God. Therefore, if we are found IN and WITH Christ, who IS the perfect One, the only righteous One, then we too can be in right relationship with God. That is why faith is so important, because it is by grace (aka you did not and cannot earn it, it was given as a free gift) you have been saved.

 

  1. Knowing this, then how does being found in Christ help us overcome sin and live life to the full?

 

 

  1. What do you think about grace? Do you struggle with this concept? What do you think God wants you to know about His heart, if He offers salvation to you solely by grace?

 

 


PRAYER: Pray that the Lord would help you more deeply understand His grace. Also, that the Lord would help you give grace to those around you, as you have been shown grace.

 

Day 9: Friday, February 27, 2015

Grace Received without Cost”

 

PRAISE: Your Grace is Enough” by Matt Maher/Chris Tomlin

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 4:1-12

11And he received circumcision as a sign, a seal of the righteousness that he had by faith while he was still uncircumcised.then, he is the fatherall who believehave not been circumcised, in order that righteousness might be credited to them.12And he is then also the father of the circumcised who not only are circumcised but who also follow in the footsteps of the faith that our father Abraham had before he was circumcised.

Meditate on the following:

Let’s think again on the word ‘grace’. Grace is used when a person receives something even though he/she is not qualified to receive it. We were supposed to be condemned as sinners and judged before God. But God credited us as righteous by the grace of Jesus Christ. Abraham was able to rely on God in his life as a result and likewise, we rely on God in our lives, too. Being able to stand before God and everything we do before God is completely God’s grace.

  1. Do you think that God is trustworthy? Why or why not?

 

 

 

 

  1. Reflect on your week. Where have you seen God’s grace at work in your life?

 

 

 

 

PRAYER: Pray a prayer of thankfulness for God’s grace this week. Ask that He would help you know how trustworthy He is more and more every day.

 

Day 10: Saturday, February 28, 2015

Gospel of The Cross and Resurrection”

 

PRAISE: Gracious Tempest” by Hillsong Young & Free

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 4:13-25

19Without weakening in his faith, he faced the fact that his body was as good as dead—since he was about a hundred years old—and that Sarah’s womb was also dead.20Yet he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthenedhis faith and gave glory to God,21being fully persuaded that God had power to do what he had promised.22This is why “it was credited to him as righteousness.”23The words “it was credited to him” were written not for him alone,24but also for us,whom God will credit righteousness—for us who believe in himraised Jesus our Lord from the dead.25He was delivered over to death for our sinswas raised to life for our justification.

 

Meditate on the following:

  1. In this passage, Paul says that, “Abraham hoped against all hope”. Are there areas in your life right now that seem hopeless? What are they and why do they seem hopeless?

 

 

 

If you read closely, Abraham wasn’t really asking for God to change his physical situation. Abraham actually was asking for more faith to have his heart understand that all things WERE indeed possible with the Lord.

  1. Do you feel like there are times when you ask God to change your situation, but not your heart? What is one example? And how do you think having faith that God can change your heart will actually help you respond to your situation?

 

 

 

PRAYER: Pray about a seemingly hopeless situation in your life, and ask the Lord to give you faith and hope to change your heart so that you can respond (instead of react) to the situation.

 

Day 11: Monday, March 2, 2015

Now and Future of Salvation”

 

PRAISE: “I Will Worship You” by Rose Park

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 5: 1-11

6You see, at just the right time,when we were still powerless,died for the ungodly.7Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die.8But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. 9Since we have now been justifiedhis blood,much more shall we be saved from God’s wrathhim!10For if, while we were God’s enemies, we were reconciledhim through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life!11Not only is this so, but we also boast in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.

 

Meditate on the following:

What happens to us through faith is amazing. First, our sins are forgiven and we are justified by God. We become His children and get to live in His peace and grace.   Moreover, we will be saved from His wrath when we have to stand in front of God on the Day of Judgment and will stand tall in His glory.

 

  1. In your own words describe the salvation we gain through faith now and in the future (5:1-2 and 9). Do you believe this salvation?

 

When we have complete trust in the salvation we gain through faith now and the salvation that is to come, “we continue to shout our praise even when we are hemmed in with troubles, because we know how troubles can develop passionate patience in us, and how that patience in turn forges the tempered steel of virtue, keeping us alert and hopeful for whatever God will do next.” (MSG 5:3-5)

 

  1. What are the godly characters you have cultivated or would like to cultivate in dealing with difficulties in your life? Think of a recent incident and reflect on how you handled that situation.

 

  1. What is the evidence of God’s love for us? How did God demonstrate His love for us (John 3:16, 5:6-11)?

 

PRAYER: Pray for more complete faith. Pray to get to know and believe the salvation to be enjoyed both now and in the future.

 

Day 12: Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Power of Life that Began in One Person”

 

PRAISE: “When I Think About The Lord” by Shane & Shane

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 5:12-21

18Consequently, just as one trespass resulted in condemnation for all people, so also one righteous act resulted in justificationlifeall people.19For just as through the disobedience of the one manmany were made sinners, so also through the obediencethe one man the many will be made righteous.

 

Meditate on the following:

This passage is very difficult to understand for those who are so immersed in individualism. However, the human race at a deeper dimension is a unity, a federation that is inseparably connected. Adam was the head of the human race. Therefore, his decision to sin affects us as surely as a person’s decisions in his head affect the rest of his body. In the same way, our connectedness as a race is also what allows Christ’s power of eternal life transferred on to us.

 

  1. What two things did Adam introduce into the world and pass on to his descendants (5:12)?

 

  1. In 5:15-17, Paul contrasts Adam and Jesus. List the effects of Adam’s trespass and God’s gift (Jesus) named in 5:15-17.

 

 

 

 

  1. Men were sinners (rebels) by nature before they knew God’s Law, for they inherited Adam’s enemy status and sinful nature (5:10, 12, and 19).
    However, what effect did God’s righteous Law have on rebellious people (5:20)?
    Why did God want His Law to have this effect (5:20-21)?

 

 

 

 

PRAYER: Give thanks to God and praise Him for the grace of eternal life given to us through Jesus Christ.

 

Day 13: Wednesday, March 4, 2015

The Righteousness Gained through the Gospel by Faith”

 

PRAISE: “My Heart Is Yours” by Kristian Stanfill

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 6: 1-14

5For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we will certainly also be united with him in a resurrection like his.6For we know that our old selfwas crucified with himthat the body ruled by sinbe done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin—7because anyone who has died has been set free from sin. 8Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him.9For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead,cannot die again; death no longer has mastery over him.10The death he died, he died to sinfor all; but the life he lives, he lives to God. 11In the same way, count yourselves dead to sinalive to God in Christ Jesus.

 

Meditate on the following:

Baptism means ‘to be washed from sin’, but more importantly it means ‘to be born again’. Water symbolizes death. To be submerged in water or sprinkled with water is an act of declaring death. When we accept Jesus Christ as our Lord, our old self is crucified with Him, and then we are reborn as a new person with Him. This is the reason why the cross and resurrection have to be combined together for the gospel to be complete.

 

  1. Describe the verse 11 in your own words. Is your life reflected as such?

 

 

  1. How can you live such that sin does not reign in your life (6:12-14)? How strong is the power of sin reigning in your life?

 

The resurrection we gain in Christ is two kinds. One is the resurrection of inner self. While living on this earth, we are reborn as one to be ruled by righteousness. The other is the resurrection Jesus had. He came alive from the dead and he will never die again. Such resurrection will be fulfilled in us on the last day.

 

  1. Examine your faith of resurrection.

 

PRAYER: Pray that you would always acknowledge and live as a born again Christian. Always remember that we have died to sin, and therefore let us commit to offer our body as an instrument of righteousness in prayer.

 

Day 14: Thursday, March 5, 2015

Fruit Leading to Holiness”

 

PRAISE: “Broken Vessels” by Hillsong

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 6:15-23

20When you were slaves to sin, you were free from the control of righteousness.21What benefit did you reap at that time from the things you are now ashamed of? Those things result in death!22But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves of God,benefit you reap leads to holiness, and the result is eternal life.23For the wages of sin is death,the gift of God is eternal lifeJesus our Lord.

 

Meditate on the following:

Grace is more powerful than the law. Grace can accomplish what the law cannot. The law leads us to strive to earn God’s favor to avoid punishment. On the other hand, grace leads us to genuinely desire to serve God to return His favor for the amazing grace we received. Hence, if anyone says that you can sin as your heart desires because you are under grace, he or she does not know true grace. Life of faith is to follow the Lord with a grateful and joyful heart that comes from the immense grace of salvation.

 

  1. How grateful are you for the grace you received?

 

Offering your body to God as an instrument of righteousness is the best thing you can do for yourself. Seeking instant gratification and pleasure would become a main purpose for those who ignore God and care more about the flesh and materials. However, those who know the grace of God keep away from seeking worldly pleasure but instead seek God’s will. Obeying God’s will would bear fruit of life leading to holiness, and its end is eternal life. The life remaining in sin may lead to pleasure in this world, but its end is eternal death.

 

  1. Which place are you standing in? Remember a time when you did what you felt like doing, ignoring God and you didn’t bother with right thinking or right living, or right anything for that matter. Do you call that a free life? What did you get out of it? Where did it get you?

 

PRAYER: Pray to discover the delight of listening to God that will lead us to holiness in abundance.

 

Day 15: Friday, March 6, 2015

The Law Is to Kill”

 

PRAISE: “In Your Freedom” by Hillsong

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 7: 1-13

9Once I was alive apart from the law; but when the commandment came, sin sprang to life and I died.10I found that the very commandment that was intended to bring lifebrought death.11For sin, seizing the opportunity afforded by the commandment,me,through the commandment put me to death.12So then, the law is holy, and the commandment is holy, righteous and good. 13Did that which is good, then, become death to me? By no means! Nevertheless, in order that sin might be recognized as sin, it used what is good to bring about my death,that through the commandment sin might become utterly sinful.

 

Meditate on the following:

In this passage, Apostle Paul speaks to those who know the law and consider the law to be important. God gave the law with good intentions. The law can only help those governed by sin not to commit more serious sin, but it cannot transform them. Therefore, the more you get to know about the law and the more effort you make to abide by the law, it becomes more obvious that you are a sinner. The law continues to condemn us and accuse us.

 

  1. Meditate on the relationship between the law and our sinful nature.

 

Jesus Christ fulfilled what the law could not. By dying on the cross, he took care of our sin and by rising up from the dead, he transformed us. Now there is no reason to be enslaved by the law. Before the gospel came, the law was on the top but after the gospel, the law lost its place. Due to sinful nature of humans, the law bound them to sin and make them bear fruit leading to death, contrary to its intended purpose. On the other hand, the gospel leads them to fruit of life for God.

 

  1. How did the gospel affect your life? Does the God who lavishly provides you with his own presence, his Holy Spirit, working things in your lives you could never do for yourselves, does He do these things because of your strenuous moral striving or because you trust him to do them in you?

 

PRAYER: Pray for true freedom in the gospel, leading to life of greater holiness.

 

Day 16: Saturday, March 7, 2015

Body of Death”

 

PRAISE: “Marvelous Light” by Charlie Hall

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 7:14-25

18For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature.I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out.19For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. 20Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it. 21So I find this law at work:I want to do good, evil is right there with me.22For in my inner beingdelight in God’s law;23but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sinwork within me.24What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? 25Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s law,in my sinful nature a slave to the law of sin.

 

Meditate on the following:

In this passage, Apostle Paul confesses in present tense, bringing back his experience when he was still under the law. As we can see from the underlined statement in verse 25, Apostle Paul himself was already out of this state when he wrote this letter. The law teaches us what sin is, but in actuality, the power to do what is good does not exist in us. In our head, we want to do what is good but what we choose to do in reality is far from what is good. This is the limit of those who live under the law. Those who do not know the law experience similar limitation through conscience.

 

  1. Reflect on your experience of struggles between thinking of doing what is good and facing challenges of actually doing it. How can we make the head knowledge into realization?

 

Read the underlined statement in verse 25 again. The Apostle cried out his spiritual frustration in verse 24 and then wrote a prayer of thanksgiving, thinking about the transformation that happened to him through Jesus Christ.

 

  1. Do you have the excitement of salvation Paul describes in verse 25?
    Do you know how hopeless state you were in when you were saved?

 

PRAYER: Pray for spiritual freedom that will not bind you from doing what is good and righteous.

 

Day 17: Monday, March 9, 2015

Living in the Holy Spirit”

 

PRAISE: “Holy Spirit” by Bryan & Katie Torwalt

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 8:1-17

12Therefore, brothers and sisters, we have an obligation—but it is not to the flesh, to live according to it.13For if you live according to the flesh, you will die;but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body,will live. 14For those who are led by the Spirit of Godare the children of God.15The Spirityou received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship.by him we cry,“Abba,.”16The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. 17Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferingsorder that we may also share in his glory.

 

Meditate on the following:

To believe in Jesus Christ means to receive the Holy Spirit. Without the Holy Spirit, one cannot accept Jesus Christ as the Lord. That is why it says “if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ,do not belong to Christ.” When we say that Christ lives in us, it means that the Holy Spirit dwells in us. The Holy Spirit is the person who brought Jesus Christ back to life from the dead and works inside us. The Holy Spirit accomplished what the law could not do. It makes us desire the will of God and want to fulfill that will. That is why we call God “Abba” in the Holy Spirit. Those who dwell in the Holy Spirit will not only share Christ’s suffering but also his glory.

 

  1. From verse 8:9 we learned the Spirit of God lives in every single Christian. How does that Spirit affect your life on a daily basis?

 

Apostle Paul uses ‘flesh’ or ‘body’ in a negative tone. ‘Flesh’ or ‘body’ refers to the natural desires of human to sin. The phrase, “live according to flesh” means to live according to human nature, and “what belongs to flesh” means what belongs to sin. On the other hand, Apostle Paul says our body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in us. The ‘body’ or ‘flesh’ is a precious gift from God. What we should guard against is the temptation of our sinful nature.

 

  1. Do you think of your ‘body’ as a temple of the Holy Spirit? How should we treat our body knowing this fact?

 

PRAYER: Pray for the Holy Spirit who lives in you.

 

Day 18: Tuesday, March 10, 2015

“Groaning of the Whole Universe”

 

PRAISE: “Hear Our Praises” by Hillsong United

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 8:18-25

18I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.19For the creation waits in eager expectation for the children of Godbe revealed.20For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it,hope 21thatcreation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decaybrought into the freedom and glory of the children of God. 22We know that the whole creation has been groaningin the pains of childbirth right up to the present time.23Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the first fruits of the Spirit,as we wait eagerlyour adoption to sonship, the redemption of our bodies.24For in this hope we were saved.But hope that is seen is no hope at all.hopes for what they already have?25But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.

 

Meditate on the following:

The fall of man, judgment, and salvation do not apply to mankind only. The consequence of the sins of Adam and Eve came to the whole world of creation. Not only mankind but all of creation is waiting for the salvation and are groaning in suffering. God, by giving the Holy Spirit mankind among all creations, showed the hope of salvation. The day will come when the reality of salvation revealed to humans, would come to all creations. John the Baptist saw the vision of ‘a new heaven and a new earth’ coming down, and that is what we are hoping for.

 

  1. Have you (or know someone) lost hope and perhaps your faith in Christ because of trials and tribulations? Pray for yourself (or someone) to regain hope and faith through the promise of eternal hope given in God’s Word.

 

The ultimate hope of believers is the kingdom of God. That kingdom is not visible to us. Because we do not see, many people do not believe it. But Apostle Paul says that it is true hope because we cannot see. Our salvation will be completed in God’s kingdom which is not visible to us now. So in order to see the promised glory, we must persevere present suffering with hope. Temporary suffering now is no comparison for the future glory in the kingdom of God.

 

  1. 2. What can you do to reflect this hope in your daily life?

 

PRAYER: Pray for the Kingdom of God and his divine purpose.

 

Day 19: Wednesday, March 11, 2015

“Touch of The Holy Spirit”

 

PRAISE: “Beautiful Things” by Michael & Lisa Gungor

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 8:26-30

28And we know that in all things God works for the goodthose who love him, whobeen calledto his purpose.29For those God foreknewalso predestinedbe conformed to the image of his Son,he might be the firstbornmany brothers and sisters.30And those he predestined,also called;he called, he also justified;he justified, he also glorified.  

 

Meditate on the following:

Those residing in the power of the Holy Spirit are not shaken even when they are faced with suffering. Because the Holy Spirit helps our weakness, God will bring out a good outcome from all thing combined. That is the reason why we have to rely on the Holy Spirit in us without being tested by current situations. What appears to be a disaster will change into blessing by the hands of the Holy Spirit.

 

  1. Do you believe in and trust God’s invisible hands to deliver you from your sufferings or difficult situations?

 

 

God’s plan for the believers exceeds our imagination. Because God decided to save all lives, “Those God foreknew” or “those he predestined”not be misinterpreted as “those who were pre-designated for salvation”. With salvation in mind, God calls people and justifies those who respond to that call by glorifying them to grow more into the image of His Son. If you responded to God’s calling, entrust yourself into His hands, and watch the touches of His hands molding you.

 

  1. Memorize verse 8:28. What is so important about this verse that many Christians quote this verse?

 

 

 

PRAYER: Pray that you can entrust yourself to the molding touches of the Holy Spirit regardless of the circumstances you are in.

 

Day 20: Thursday, March 12, 2015

Song of Victory”

 

PRAISE: “Relentless” by Hillsong United

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 8:31-39

31What, then, shall we say in response to these things?God is for us,can be against us?32He who did not spare his own Son,gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?33Who will bring any chargethose whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies.34Who then is the one who condemns?No one. Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of Godis also interceding for us.35Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword?

 

Meditate on the following:

Whoever believes in Jesus Christ as the Lord and receives the Spirit of God has nothing to fear. We should neither be afraid of the condemnation of the Law, nor the wrath of God. We are neither to retreat from the suffering of the present times, nor to flee from the suffering to endure for the gospel. We are the people tied to the tri-fold love of God the Holy Father, Jesus the Holy Son, and God the Holy Spirit. Therefore, even death cannot be an object of fear. Because death of flesh is a channel through which we become one with Christ.

 

  1. Is there such assurance of God’s love in you?

 

 

  1. What are some of the things that question and make you doubt of God’s love for you? Release them to God and be encouraged from His promises found in today’s passage.

 

 

  1. Read these verses many times, meditate on them, and memorize them. Embrace them until they become the Word you love the most.

 

 

PRAYER: Pray for the unshakable confidence of your salvation in Christ Jesus.

 

Day 21: Friday, March 13, 2015

Principle of Election”

PRAISE: “Chosen Generation” by Chris Tomlin

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 9:1-18

I speak the truth in Christ—I am not lying,conscience confirmsthrough the Holy Spirit—2I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart.3For I could wish that I myselfcursedcut off from Christ for the sake of my people,of my own race,4the people of Israel.

 

Meditate on the following:

Apostle Paul spread the gospel first to the Jews wherever he went. But in all the cities he visited, the Jews refused the gospel. On the other hand, many of the gentiles accepted the gospel. That was a great sorrow and unceasing anguish to Paul. He confesses that he is willing to be cut off from Christ for his own people of Israel to be saved. He was that desperate about the salvation of his own people.

  1. Do you have such an aching heart about someone that does not know Christ?

 

Israelites were chosen as a nation of priests and given many special rights that came with it. As a result, Jews should be stronger in spirituality than the gentiles. The reality, however, was not so. Why? Because just being born into a Jewish family does not make that person a Jew. The descendants of Abraham are determined by faith, not by the blood line. It means that there were so few chosen people among Jews who carried that faith.

 

  1. Do you have the faith that is fitting to be called a Christian?

 

Why did God choose Israel among many nations? Why did God choose Isaac, not Ishmael? Why did God choose Jacob, not Esau? That is not because of any human condition or merit but decision based upon God’s will which we may not understand. That choice may look unfair to us but in God’s sight it is a just and fair decision. Those who believe in God should trust and accept even when God’s choice ‘appears to be unfair’. Meditate on this principal of selection that God has the ultimate right and control over all things.

 

PRAYER: Pray to believe in the power of our mighty God and to accept His will.

 

Day 22: Saturday, March 14, 2015

Potter and Clay”

 

PRAISE: “Potter’s Hand” by Hillsong

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 9:19-29

19One of you will say to me:“Then why does God still blame us?who is able to resist his will?”20But who are you, a human being, to talk back to God? “Shall what is formed say to the one who formed it,‘Why did you make me like this?’” 21Does not the potter have the right to make out of the same lump of clay some pottery for special purposes and some for common use?

 

Meditate on the following:

Thinking about the sovereignty of God and the principle of selection, we are bound to ask this question. If everything is determined by God’s decision, are the evil sins committed by people like Hitler and ISIS also God’s doing? If so, then, whether good or bad, are we all acting as God dictates? Apostle Paul says such questions arise from forgetting the huge difference between God and human. If God is a potter, man is merely clay. It is impossible for man to completely understand God’s purpose and intention with our limited mind and explain adequately with our logic.

 

  1. Meditate on the infinite distance that exists between God and human being. How does Paul’s illustration that God is the potter and we are the clay encourages you to release the control over to God?

 

 

The reality about the gospel of salvation has been already prophesied – that Jews would refuse and the gentiles would respond. God already prophesied that the gentiles would return to Him eventually and that among Jews only a few remnants would remain in God. To Apostle Paul, having only a few Jews accepting the gospel was a great sorrow, but when we acknowledge that it too is God’s will, we are comforted. Even if we do not want to accept the reality we face, we can take comfort in knowing that there is God who is trustworthy behind it all.

 

  1. 2. Do you have such belief and trust in God?

 

PRAYER: Imagine your existence is in God’s hand like a lump of clay. Pray that we put down our stubbornness, ambition, and our own view so that we become a clay God can mold.

 

Day 23: Monday, March 16, 2015

Christ Who is the End of the Law”

 

PRAISE: “Revelation Song” by Kari Jobe

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 9:30-10:4

30What then shall we say?the Gentiles, who did not pursue righteousness, have obtained it, a righteousness that is by faith;31but the people of Israel, who pursued the law as the way of righteousness,not attained their goal.32Why not? Because they pursued it not by faith but as if it were by works. They stumbled over the stumbling stone.

 

Meditate on the following questions:

Salvation is first of all being restored to the relationship with God. This relationship was broken because of our sin. Jesus Christ died on the cross and restored this broken relationship and, by resurrecting from the dead, led us to life of righteousness. God calls the sinners righteous by the grace of the cross, and leads us to life of righteousness through the spirit of resurrection. All of that is made possible by faith. The gentiles, upon hearing this gospel, welcomed it. Jews, however, could not let go of the Law. They misunderstood that the Law would save them. As a result, only a very few Jews received the gospel. Sometimes, what we have can become a stumbling block.

 

  1. Do you have anything that can create an obstacle to accepting the gospel?

 

Apostle Paul still prays for the salvation of his own people. Even if only a few Jews opened their hearts to the gospel according to God’s providence and election, Paul knew that that is not God’s ultimate purpose. God wants to save all nations, including the Jews. Thus Apostle Paul prays for hastening of that day when Jews would stop making impossible attempts to attain righteousness on their own effort but rely on the righteousness attained through Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ accomplished the purpose the Law attempted but could not reach. Therefore, Christ is said to be the culmination of the Law. Meditate on Jesus Christ, who is the end and completion of the Law.

 

  1. Like Jews, are you trying to attain salvation through your own efforts?

 

PRAYER: Give a prayer of thanksgiving to God for counting us as righteous without regards to our own attempts and transforming us to be righteous.

 

Day 24: Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Faith of Heart and Confession of Body”

 

PRAISE: “I Could Sing of Your Love Forever” by Delirious

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 10:5-13

10For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.11As Scripture says, “Anyone who believes in him will never be put to shame.”12For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile—the same Lord is Lord of allrichly blesses all who call on him,13for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lordbe saved.”

 

Meditate on the following questions:

The gospel of salvation is not something one must go to a distant country to find. It is neither a hard to solve formula nor a profound principle only a genius can understand. We should not throw up our hands and say, “How can we know the secret of heaven?” Jesus has already revealed it to us. We should not turn our face away asking, “How can we know the world after death?” Jesus has gone down to the dead and came back. The revelation of Jesus Christ is different from the Law in its dimension.

 

  1. According to verse 10:10, how do you come to face the revelation of Jesus Christ?

The gospel is that Jesus took care of our sins on the cross for us to be considered righteous and resurrected from the dead to transform us into righteous being. This gospel can exert its power when we confess Jesus Christ as the “Lord” with our mouth and believe in our heart the fact of His resurrection. “To confess with mouth” is an act of dedicating one’s life to the person one is confessing to. Thus, it can be rewritten as, “I believe in my heart so I live out this faith with my body”.

 

  1. Do you have such “faith of heart” and “confession of mouth (body)”?

Paul wrote that anyone who believes in Jesus Christ will never be put to shame. This does not mean that Christians will prosper and be successful in everything they do. Apostle Paul himself was mocked many times and shamed before the world. In spite of that, he said this because being made righteous through Jesus Christ, he is not put to shame before God. God takes care of those who trust and call on the name of the Lord to the end.

 

PRAYER: Pray for your “faith of heart” and “confession of body”, worthy of salvation.

 

Day25: Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Chain Link of the Gospel”

 

PRAISE: “Say, Say” by Kristian Stanfill

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 10:14-21

14How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them?15And how can anyone preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!” 16But not all the Israelites accepted the good news.

 

Meditate on the following questions:

Those calling on the name of the Lord are the ones who believe in that name. One cannot believe unless someone has shared the name with them first. Only the person called to share the gospel will do so. This is how the gospel is spread and the salvation comes. The person sent by God goes and spreads the gospel, the person hearing the gospel believes, and the person who believes is saved by calling on that name of Jesus Christ.

 

  1. Who was the person that passed on the gospel to you?

 

Not everybody that was sent passes it on. What gets passed on is not all the gospel of salvation. Not everyone hearing the gospel believes. Those who believe don’t always call on the name. Of these chain links, even if one is disconnected, salvation does not come. That is exactly what happened to Jews. They have heard the gospel and known but did not believe.

 

  1. Think about the chain links in which the gospel is passed on. Which part are you taking on? All Christians are called by God to spread the gospel. Are you faithful to this call?

 

 

 

PRAYER: Pray that the gospel of salvation is spread even further through you.

 

 

Day 26: Thursday, March 19, 2015

Hardened Heart, Spirit of Stupor“

 

PRAISE: “Open Up Our Eyes” by Elevation Worship

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 11:1-10

5So too, at the present time there is a remnantby grace.6And if by grace, then it cannot be based on works;it were, grace would no longer be grace. 7What then? What the people of Israel sought so earnestly they did not obtain. The elect among them did, but the others were hardened,8as it is written: “God gave them a spirit of stupor,that could not seeears that could not hear, to this very day.” 9And David says: “May their table become a snare and a trap,stumbling block and a retribution for them. 10May their eyes be darkened so they cannot see, and their backs be bent forever.”

 

Meditate on the following questions:

The fact that only a few Jews accepted the gospel has been prophesied by God and that is in His providence does not mean that God has abandoned them forever. Elijah once thought that he was the only prophet left, but God said that he reserved 7,000 remnants. Likewise, what God does is not always seen by everyone. It means that there are more Jews that accepted the gospel than what Paul was aware of. And in His time, God will restore the Jews unto Him.

 

  1. Pray for those Jews who are yet to acknowledge the Lord.

A few Jews who received the gospel and have attained righteousness are not the people who observed the Law perfectly. They gave up on the righteousness of the Law and accepted Christ as the Lord and were justified by grace. Many more people, however, did not give up on the Law. Their hearts were even more hardened before the gospel. When a heart is hardened, one becomes the slave of the spirit of insensibility. To be on your knees before Christ is not possible with a hardened heart.

 

  1. What are the things that harden your heart to turn you against the gospel?

 

 

 

PRAYER: Pray for a softened heart before the gospel.

 

Day 27: Friday, March 20, 2015

Kindness and Sternness of God”

 

PRAISE: “Mighty to Save” by Hillsong United

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 11:11-24

11Again I ask: Did they stumble so as to fall beyond recovery? Not at all! Rather, because of their transgression, salvation has come to the Gentilesmake Israel envious.12But if their transgression means riches for the world, and their loss means riches for the Gentiles,much greater riches will their full inclusion bring!

 

Meditate on the following questions:

Apostle Paul thinks of Jews’ unbelief as temporary. As a good tree’s original branch is cut out for a not so good tree’s branch to be grafted there, it was only as a temporary means that the covenant people did not come to believe so that the gentiles would believe in the gospel. It won’t be long before the Jews will return. When the Jews see the gentiles coming to believe in the gospel and enjoy salvation, they will become jealous and be more motivated. When Jews come back into the gospel, more gentiles are also expected to receive the gospel.

 

  1. Pray for the restoration of Jewish people.

Apostle Paul tells us to remember “the kindness and sternness” of God. That is both sides of God’s love. If one is to pursue his own righteousness with stubborn heart like Jews, God will treat them sternly. He will do such a thing as he would cut off a branch for graft. On the other hand, to those who receive the gospel of the Lord humbly, he would treat with kindness. That is why even if you believe in the gospel and enjoy the salvation, you should not become arrogant and work out your salvation with fear and trembling.

 

  1. When have you experienced God’s kindness? His sternness? Examine your heart to see if you remain humble before the Lord.

 

 

 

PRAYER: Pray for the salvation of all people.

 

Day 28: Saturday, March 21, 2015

Immeasurable Mystery of God”

 

PRAISE: “Worthy of It All” by David Brymer

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 11:25-36

28As far as the gospel is concerned, they are enemiesyour sake; but as far as election is concerned, they are loved on account of the patriarchs,29for God’s gifts and his callirrevocable.30Just as you who were at one time disobedientGod have now received mercy as a result of their disobedience, 31so they too have now become disobedient in order that they too may now receive mercy as a result of God’s mercy to you.32For God has bound everyone over to disobediencethat he may have mercy on them all. 33Oh, the depth of the richesthe wisdom andof God!unsearchable his judgments,his paths beyond tracing out! 34“Who has known the mind of the Lord?who has been his counselor?” 35“Who has ever given to God,God should repay them?” 36For from him and through him and for him are all things. To him be the glory forever!

 

Meditate on the following questions:

Jews lost salvation by keeping the Law. However, God’s will to elect Israel still remains. God’s reason for choosing Israel was not just for their benefit, but through them, God plans to save all people. Thus only a few Jews have received the gospel for now but God will eventually restore the Jewish people. God wants to save all people in this world without discrimination. But why the phenomenon taking place doesn’t appear that way? It looks that way because we do not know His providence and the greater plan. God will accomplish the salvation of all people with mysterious touch of hands, incomprehensible to us.

 

  1. What are some of the things that you find hard to understand about God? Meditate on the amazing, deep, and profound mystery of God.

 

God works out the salvation of all people in ways we cannot comprehend. Those who believe in that mystery do not just watch what God does passively. Like Apostle Paul, entrusting everything to the providence of God, they are faithful to their own calling to spread the gospel in order to save even just one more person.

 

  1. How passionate are you about spreading the gospel?

PRAYER: Pray for passionate desire to rely on God’s mysterious hands and to lead just one more person to salvation.

 

Day 29: Monday, March 23, 2015

Holy Living Sacrifice”

 

PRAISE: “My Heart is Yours” by Kristian Stanfill

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 12:1-2

1Therefore, I urge you,and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice,and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship.2Do not conformthe pattern of this world,be transformed by the renewing of your mind.you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasingperfect will.

 

Meditate on the following:

“Therefore” refers to what Paul wrote in chapters 1 to 11. Until chapter 11, Paul explained about the salvation accomplished through the cross and the resurrection of Jesus Christ. “Therefore” means “if one has experienced the salvation through the gospel of the cross and the resurrection.” Faith that believes with heart and confesses with body makes one live a different life from the past.

 

  1. Is your life lived differently since you became a Christian? In what ways did it change?

 

Apostle Paul compares the changes in life through faith to ‘holy living sacrifice’. ‘Sacrifice’ is what gets killed and offered on the altar. A believer is someone who is made alive after first dying on the cross with Christ. Since one died to sin, he is now alive for righteousness. Therefore, in his daily life, he has to reflect the life of ‘sacrifice’. That is the worship pleasing to God. ‘Proper worship’ can be translated as ‘worship that makes sense’. If one worships while thinking, talking, and acting like he was in the past, then that is ‘worship that makes no sense’.

 

  1. How is your worship? Is your worship pleasing to God?

 

Since a believer is one who died to sin and alive for righteousness, the believer needs to offer his/her body as instrument of righteousness. For this, one must not follow the ways of this world, but be transformed by the Holy Spirit through the renewing of one’s mind. Then, one can discern what God’s will is. God’s will does not reveal itself. One must keep digging into it, test it out, and verify it.

 

PRAYER: Pray that you would live as a holy living sacrifice. Also, pray for transformations by faith and the Holy Spirit.

 

Day 30: Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Community of Spiritual Gift”

 

PRAISE: “Humble King” by Brenton Brown

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 12:3-8

3For by the grace given mesay to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you.4For just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function,5so in Christ we, though many, form one body,each member belongs to all the others.6We have different gifts,to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying,prophesy in accordance with your;7if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach;8if it is to encourage, then give encouragement;it is giving, then give generously;it is to lead,it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully.

 

Meditate on the following:

To those who believe in Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit indwells in them. The Holy Spirit not only changes a believer’s inside, but gives ‘spiritual gift’. We call it ‘grace gift’ (gift freely given through grace). The Holy Spirit may give a new gift such as prophecy or speaking in tongue, and may use the already present talent like serving or teaching for holy purpose. Gift given by grace is not for his or her own gain, but for edification of the community (church). The Holy Spirit distributes various gifts evenly to people. Consequently, one should not only discern his or her own gift, but also acknowledge and respect gift given to others. When the work does not fit one’s gift, one should step back humbly and yield to others with the gift needed for that task. Like a well-trained orchestra, all believers in a community need to stand in his or her position, make use of his or her gift, and serve for one purpose, cooperating with others. The community that moves by the gifts of the Spirit is beautiful.

 

  1. What kind of grace gift God has given to you?

 

 

  1. How are you using it for your community (church)?

 

PRAYER: Pray to know your gift from the Spirit, and that our church would move by the grace gifts of the members.

 

Day 31: Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Love Expressed as Action”

 

PRAISE: “Love Came Down” by Kari Jobe

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 12:9-21

9Love must be sincere.what is evil; cling to what is good.10Be devoted to one another in love.Honor one another above yourselves.11Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor,the Lord.12Be joyful in hope,in affliction,in prayer.13Share with the Lord’s people who are in need.hospitality. …

18If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.19Do not take revenge,dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,”the Lord.20On the contrary: “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.” 21Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

 

Meditate on the following:

Another aspect of living as ‘holy living sacrifice’ is to love. Love should be expressed as specific action. Here Apostle Paul explains love using as many expressions as possible. First of all, to love is to walk with the Lord and keep oneself holy. Therefore, it says to “keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord”, and “be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” One must first develop spiritual power to be able to love.

 

Love must be expressed specifically in the community of faith. Today’s passage spells out specific ways in which we are to express this love in the church. To love means to sacrifice myself for brothers and sisters and for the community. Sincere love ought to be expressed in the same form and shape anywhere in the world and to whoever you are dealing with. If one loves passionately inside the community of faith but changes abruptly outside of the community, then that is not sincere love. To bless and not curse those who persecute for the reason of faith is that example. Even if one runs into a person behaving wickedly, one does not pay back with wickedness. Believing in God who judges and straightens all out, we should be able to yield and take a loss whenever possible.

 

What does your love look like in church? What about in the world?

PRAYER: Pray that God will help you to develop spiritual power, so that you can express your sincere love in the community and in this world.

 

Day 32: Thursday, March 26, 2015

How to Love as Citizen”

 

PRAISE: “God of This City” by Chris Tomlin

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 13:1-7

1 Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities,there is no authority except that which God has established.The authorities that exist have been established by God.

 

Meditate on the following:

Here Apostle Paul suggests a principle teaching about the system and structure of a nation or society. God rules everything in the world. Consequently, the system and structure of society and the authority that moves it is used as God’s instrument to reign and run the world. Therefore, one should receive not only the position received in church, but also the position and authority obtained in society as God given. Thus those sitting in such positions must understand that their positions and authorities came from God and carry out their duties with fear and trembling, and those being governed by them must do all their responsibilities and duties as citizens. That is one way to express love as a citizen. It is a big misunderstanding to think that a believer’s responsibility is in church only.

 

  1. What are your responsibilities as a citizen in this society?

 

It is a principle to apply given that a nation is doing its intended function. If those in power become blinded by their own greed, believers’ action should be different. Believers must strive to reform the system and the structure to be more just and take on an active role of overseeing and checking to ensure those in power work honestly and justly.

 

  1. What kind of injustices do you see in our society? What should you do to fight against these injustices?

 

 

 

PRAYER: Pray for a society that is just and promote justice for all people. Also, pray for the victims of injustice.

 

Day 33: Friday, March 27, 2015

Debt of Love”

 

PRAISE: “Give Us Clean Hands” by Chris Tomlin

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 13:8-14

8Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for whoever loves others has fulfilled the law.9The commandments, “You shall not commit adultery,” “You shall not murder,” “You shall not steal,” “You shall not covet,”whatever other command there may be, are summed upthis one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”10Love does no harm to a neighbor. Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law. 11And do this, understanding the present time: The hour has already comeyou to wake up from your slumber,our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed.12The night is nearly over; the day is almost here.let us put aside the deeds of darknessput on the armorof light.13Let us behave decently, as in the daytime, not in carousing and drunkenness,in sexual immorality and debauchery, not in dissension and jealousy.14Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ,do not think about how to gratify the desires of the flesh.

 

Meditate on the following:

Apostle Paul emphasizes about love once again. Love is the goal that the entire law pursues. Thus, love is said to be the fulfillment of the Law. The law is the regulation about the minimum love. On the other hand, the gospel of Jesus Christ makes one grow toward the maximum love. That is why a believer is one who is indebted in love. Other debts should be paid off, but the debt of love cannot be paid off, because the love that our Lord expects from us is infinite.

 

Apostle Paul believed that he would see the Second Coming of Jesus before dying. That belief did not come true, but that attitude is always in effect. Jesus taught that way and Paul and other apostles did the same. Thinking that today may be the last day, one must be awake always. To be awake always is to “put aside the deeds of darkness, and put on the armor of light” and to ‘behave decently as in the daytime”. Those who live like that, will live to fulfill God’s will not the desires of their flesh. They live by love not greed. Meditate on ‘being awake’.

 

  1. If you live today thinking that it may be the last day on earth, how would that change the way you live today?

 

PRAYER: Pray to stay awake always and act in love.

 

Day 34: Saturday, March 28, 2015

For the Glory of God”

 

PRAISE: “My Glorious” by Delirious

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 14:1-12

7For none of us lives for ourselves alone, and none of us dies for ourselves alone.8If we live, we live for the Lord; and if we die, we die for the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord.9For this very reason, Christ died and returned to lifethat he might be the Lord of both the dead and the living. 10You, then, why do you judge your brother or sister[a]? Or why do you treat them with contempt?For we will all stand before God’s judgment seat.

 

Meditate on the following:

During Paul’s time, the Roman cities were full of various temples dedicated to many gods and animal sacrifices were continuously given there. As a result, meat left over from those sacrifices was being sold in the marketplace indistinguishable from the meat not offered as sacrifice. Some believers with weak faith gave up eating meat all together in the fear of committing idolatry. On the other hand, some people ate meat knowing that we have the freedom in Christ. The church was split over that issue as those who ate meat looked down on those who didn’t, and those who did not eat meat criticized those who did. Paul exhorts them to stop treating one another with contempt, and to respect one another as a servant and a child of God.

 

  1. Are there any similar issues facing the church today? What would that be?

 

Apostle Paul declares important principles here. First, all believers are God’s servants, and it is God who judges each person. We are not to judge or condemn others but to love and serve one another. We will all stand before the judgment seat on that last day. Second, regardless of what you do, the most important thing is to do it for God’s glory. If one brings glory to God by not eating the meat, then he is worthy of praise. The same goes for the ones who eat the meat Each person is to choose after discerning honestly before God.

 

  1. Think about these two principles. How can you apply these principles in today’s church?

 

 

PRAYER: Pray that you will treat your neighbor as someone to love, not as someone to judge.

 

Day 35: Monday, March 30, 2015

Signs of God’s Kingdom”

 

PRAISE: “You” by Hillsong United

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 14:13-23

17For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking,of righteousness, peacejoy in the Holy Spirit,18because anyone who serves Christ in this way is pleasing to God and receives human approval. 19Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peaceto mutual edification.

 

Meditate on the following:

There is one truth you must remember whenever you are dealing with a person –“Christ died for that person.” If we can remember that truth, then we will not judge or condemn others with our own standards. Instead, we’ll do “what leads to peace and to mutual edification”. Before you act, first ask “would my action benefit the brother/sister? Nothing takes priority before love.

 

  1. Are your treatment of your family, friends, and co-workers motivated by love?

Apostle Paul tells us to act with clear conviction. Whether one does something or not, he should first find a clear reason about it before God. While doing something, if he questions, “could this be sin perhaps?”, then he has been already condemned. Without the conviction, one should not engage in anything. No matter what the others say, if you are convinced before God, then you can act boldly.

 

Apostle Paul does not use the expression, ‘Kingdom of God’ often. To him, Jesus Christ was the very kingdom of God. In this passage, however, he makes an important statement about God’s kingdom. “The kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking,of righteousness, peacejoy in the Holy Spirit.” The evidence of living in the kingdom of God does not stop at gaining freedom in the matter of eating and drinking. Enjoying righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit is the evidence that one lives in God’s kingdom. If one lives such a life, that person will quit judging others with his/her own standard and will serve with love.

 

  1. To you, what is the most important thing about the kingdom of God?

 

PRAYER: Pray about your attitude toward the brothers and sisters in the community. Also, pray for those whom you could not embrace or forgive and ask God to transform your heart and attitude toward them.

 

Day 36: Tuesday, March 31, 2015

In the Same Attitude of Christ”

 

PRAISE: “Scandal of Grace” by Hillsong United

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 15:1-13

5May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mindeach other that Christ Jesus had,6so that with one mind and one voice you may glorifyGod and Fatherour Lord Jesus Christ. 7Accept one another,, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God.

Meditate on the following questions:

Apostle Paul encourages once more to make effort to be considerate of one another in the community and put other’s interest ahead of yours. He points to Jesus Christ as the role model. If we think about how the Lord accepted us, then there would be no one we cannot accept. As the Lord did not say or act as He pleased, it is fitting that we too behave in that manner towards others. To those who seek to live like Jesus, God gives endurance and encouragement. Like Jesus, we must glorify God the Father through the way we conduct ourselves towards others.

 

  1. Does your behavior in the community bring glory to God? What changes should you make to be more like Jesus in the way you treat others?

 

 

Although Jesus Christ was as a Jew, he brought glory to God by saving even the gentiles. That is what the Father God wanted and planned. If you gained salvation through Jesus who sacrificed everything to fulfill the will of the Father, then you should be able to open up your heart to embrace anyone. This is how you take on the mind and the attitude of Jesus Christ as well as that of God the Father.

 

  1. What are the stumbling blocks for you to open up your heart to embrace others? What are some of the things you can do to become more like Jesus in this aspect?

 

PRAYER: Pray to live with the attitude of Christ.

 

Day 37: Wednesday, April 1, 2015

As the Grace Leads”

 

PRAISE: “This is Amazing Grace” by Phil Wickham

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 15:14-21

17Therefore I glory in Christ Jesusin my service to God.18I will not venture to speak of anything except what Christ has accomplished through me in leading the Gentilesobey Godwhat I have said and done—19by the power of signs and wonders,the power of the Spirit of God.

 

Meditate on the following questions:

Apostle Paul is closing the letter. The contents he wrote up to that point was not new to the church in Rome, but were intended to confirm what they already knew. He did not write it because the church was doing the wrong things, but to press them harder to continue in the right path. Paul was bold in his teaching because he knew that God not only saved him but also called him as an apostle to spread the gospel. Paul would have had neither the reason, nor the qualification to write such a letter to the believers in Rome whom he has never met if it wasn’t for that grace. Likewise, even today, God’s grace unites those clothed in grace as one body. We are united as brothers and sisters in that grace which transcends physical location, race, and cultural barriers.

 

  1. Have you experienced God’s grace that Paul received? How did it change you?

 

Apostle Paul briefly introduces his ministry of evangelism. He believed that he was called to be an evangelist for the gentiles. In the beginning, he did not know that fact. Therefore, wherever he went, he looked for the Jews to spread the gospel. Being persecuted by the Jews repeatedly, however, he realized that God’s calling was elsewhere. He also searched for the places where no evangelist’s footsteps had reached. And going through Rome now, he planned to go to Spain. That too was because of God’s grace. Grace of God kept pushing him to go forward without ceasing.

 

  1. Has God’s grace led you to share the Gospel with someone? What happened when you shared the Gospel?

PRAYER: Pray for the gospel to be spread to the whole world. Also, pray for those who have not experienced God’s grace yet.

 

Day 38: Thursday, April 2, 2015

Power of Koinonia”

 

PRAISE: “You are beautiful” by Phil Wickham

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 15:22-33

30I urge you, brothers and sisters, by our Lord Jesus Christ and by the love of the Spirit,join me in my struggle by praying to God for me. 31Pray that I may be kept safethe unbelievers in Judea and that the contributiontake to Jerusalem may be favorably received by the Lord’s people,32so that I may come to youjoy, by God’s will,in your company be refreshed.33The God of peacewith you all. Amen.

 

Meditate on the following questions:

When he wrote this letter, Paul had a plan to visit Jerusalem. At the time, Jerusalem and Judah suffered a severe drought and the Jerusalem church was under a great financial difficulty. Apostle Paul, upon hearing that news, called for help to churches in the Macedonia and Achaia regions. They gave offering out of joyful heart, and Paul was to go to Jerusalem to deliver that offering. Apostle Paul asks the Roman believers to pray for him because the unbelieving Jews were determined to get rid of Paul whom they considered to be a traitor. Also, Paul was not sure if the Jerusalem believers would accept the gentiles’ contributions favorably. Paul’s plan was to go to Spain after visiting Jerusalem, passing through Rome. However, Paul gets martyred in Rome.

 

  1. Why was Paul not afraid to go to Jerusalem even though he knew that the unbelieving Jews were determined to harm him?

In this passage, we see specifically what ‘Koinonia’ is. ’Koinonia’ usually is translated as ‘fellowship’, but its actual meaning is much deeper. The way the Macedonia and Achaia church collected offering to help the Jerusalem church is Koinonia. Paul, visiting the church in Rome to seek their help on his way to Spain, asking the Roman believers to “pray fervently” for him is Koinonia. As Paul thought about visiting the church in Rome, he got excited, that, too is Koinonia. Faith is fellowship, serving, and sharing. All these are called Koinonia. Through Koinonia , the gospel is spread more widely and more deeply.

 

  1. Have you ever experienced this Koinonia in your faith community? What can you do to experience this type of fellowship at your church?

PRAYER: Pray for life of true Koinonia.

 

Day 39: Friday, April 3, 2015

The Name God Will Call”

 

PRAISE: “Waiting Here for You” by Martin Smith

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 16:1-16

1I commendyou our sister Phoebe, a deaconthe church in Cenchreae.2I ask you to receive her in the Lorda way worthy of his people and to give her any help she may need from you, for she has been the benefactor of many people, including me. 3Greet PriscillaAquila,my co-workersChrist Jesus. 4They risked their lives for me. Not only I but all the churches of the Gentiles are grateful to them. 5Greet also the church that meets at their house.

 

Meditate on the following questions:

Phoebe is the one who delivered this letter. As a woman, it was not an ordinary thing to take on a distant and rough journey from Corinth to Rome. Apostle Paul entrusted that grave responsibility with Phoebe even though there were many male believers around. Continuing on the letter, Apostle Paul sends greetings, listing many people’s names in the Roman church. He mentions 24 names and 9 of them are women. Referring to the Priscilla and Aquila couple, he writes the wife’s name first. It means that women played a very important role when discrimination against the women was accepted as the norm. Apostle Paul claimed that in Christ the difference between male and female, master and servant, Jews and gentiles disappears, and that was not just an ideology but a reality taking place in the first church.

 

  1. What discriminations should be torn down in today’s church?

 

Apostle Paul was not the one who founded the church in Rome and has never even visited there. Still he knew so many people to bring up 24 names. Moreover, Apostle Paul attaches descriptive word in front of all the names he mentions to verse 13. They are like, “my coworkers in Christ Jesus”, “my dear friend”, “who worked very hard for you”. Apostle Paul remembered each of God’s servants and their hard work. That is the heart of God.

 

  1. When God calls your name, what descriptive words do you think he will attach in front? What would you like to hear? What can you do to be the person that fits the description that you desire to hear from God?

 

 

PRAYER: Pray to live a life that is meaningful to the kingdom of God.

 

Day 40: Saturday, April 4, 2015

The Gospel Spread through Co-Working”

 

PRAISE: “Spirit Break Out” by Tim Hughes

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 16:17-27

19Everyone has heardyour obedience, so I rejoice because of you; but I want you to be wise about what is good, and innocent about what is evil. 20The God of peacesoon crust Satan under your feet. The grace of our Lord Jesus be with you. 21Timothy,co-worker, sends his greetings to you, as do Lucius,Sosipater, my fellow Jews. 22I, Tertius, who wrote down this letter, greet you in the Lord. 23Gaius,hospitality I and the whole church here enjoy, sends you his greetings. Erastus,is the city’s director of public works, and our brother Quartus send you their greetings.

 

Meditate on the following questions:

Lastly, Apostle Paul admonishes to guard against those who have become Satan’s instrument to confuse the gospel and to bring chaos in the community. Like today, there were evangelists in those days deceiving naïve people with tricky words to fill their greed. Those are described as the ones “serving their own appetites”. Believers are to be “wise about what is good and innocent about what is evil”. It means to strive to do good and to keep hands off from evil. Apostle Paul pays the same attention onto each individual’s soul and the well-being of the community.

 

  1. What is the relationship between the salvation of an individual and church?

 

 

Apostle Paul is writing this letter in Corinth. Gaius is the owner of the house he stayed. It was customary at the time to have a ‘professional recorder’ who wrote letters for others as the sender spoke. Paul wrote this letter following that custom. Tertius is the person who wrote down as Paul spoke the contents. In Paul’s company were Timothy, Paul’s relatives, and Erastus and Quartus who were influential in Corinth. Apostle Paul’s ministry of evangelism was made possible because there were many co-workers who shared in the ministry with him.

 

  1. What ministries are you involved in? Who are your co-workers sharing in those ministries? Thank God for them and bless them in Christ.

 

PRAYER: Pray to participate in the holy co-working for the gospel.

Copyright @ Korean United Methodist Church of Greater Washington

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