Today's Good News

December 2006

12/1            John 1:1
In the beginning the Word already existed. He was with God, and he was God.

GOD
God was concerned about each of us.  God wanted to communicate Himself to us in a way that our small minds could understand so He came to us and revealed Himself to us in the flesh.

 

12/2            John 1:2-4
He was in the beginning with God.  He created everything there is. Nothing exists that he didn’t make.  Life itself was in him, and this life gives light to everyone.

GOD
Jesus created all things.  He always was with God and always was God.  The life He gives is a life of quality that is the kind of life that God has.  It is a gift of spiritual life that births us into God’s kingdom.

 

12/3            John 1:5-8
The light shines through the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it.  God sent John the Baptist to tell everyone about the light so that everyone might believe because of his testimony.  John himself was not the light; he was only a witness to the light.

TESTIMONY
John testified to the coming of Jesus.  He sensitized those that were seeking God so that they would recognize the Lord when He appeared.  We are witnesses of the Lord Jesus.  We testify to what He has done in our life and to the new life that He has given us.

 

12/4            John 1:9-11
The one who is the true light, who gives light to everyone, was going to come into the world.  But although the world was made through him, the world didn’t recognize him when he came.  Even in his own land and among his own people, he was not accepted.

ACCEPTANCE
Life in Christ is a gift.  It is God attempting to give us life like His.  This life is eternal and this life outfits us for our life here in the world.  It is spiritual life that enables us to be a servant and communicator of God’s love.

 

12/5            John 1:12
But to all who believed him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God.

SALVATION
God’s message to us is that He loves us and is seeking to give us life.  His life equips us to live life.  His love under girds all we are and is the foundation for us to be what He created us to be-His children.

 

12/6            John 1:13
They are reborn! This is not a physical birth resulting from human passion or plan – this rebirth comes from God.

LIFE
Spiritual life like God’s life is the gift that we are offered.  This rebirth puts and new heart and new mind inside of us.  No longer are we dead in our trespasses but become alive in Christ.  Life as a child of God is our gift.

12/7            John 1:14
So the Word became human and lived here on earth among us. He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness.  And we have seen his glory, the glory of the only Son of the Father.

DIVINE
We cannot comprehend God.  God so loved us that He chose to let us see Him in a form we could comprehend-Jesus Christ.  Jesus stepped into our world, in our form and presented to us the essence of God’s character-LOVE.  For God so loved us that He wanted us to see that love in a form we could understand.  Jesus is God.

 

12/8            John 1:15-18
John pointed him out to the people. He shouted to the crowds, “This is the one I was talking about when I said, ‘Someone is coming who is far greater than I am, for he existed long before I did.'”  We have all benefited from the rich blessings he brought to us – one gracious blessing after another. For the law was given through Moses; God’s unfailing love and faithfulness came through Jesus Christ.  No one has ever seen God. But his only Son, who is himself God, is near to the Father’s heart; he has told us about him.

DIVINE
God told us He was coming and He came in the flesh.  Jesus was fully God and fully human.  He displayed God’s love for us and communicates God’s interest in us.  Jesus is Lord.

 

12/9            John 1:19-23
This was the testimony of John when the Jewish leaders sent priests and Temple assistants from Jerusalem to ask John whether he claimed to be the Messiah.  He flatly denied it. “I am not the Messiah,” he said.  “Well then, who are you?” they asked. “Are you Elijah?””No,” he replied.”Are you the Prophet?”  “No.”  “Then who are you? Tell us, so we can give an answer to those who sent us. What do you have to say about yourself?”  John replied in the words of Isaiah: “I am a voice shouting in the wilderness, ‘Prepare a straight pathway for the Lord’s coming!'”

ANNOUNCEMENT
God is in control of all things.  This control extends to all things meaning that you and I can live our lives with the assurance that the Lord Jesus knows where we are, what we are going through and what we need to face each day.  As we meet Him in the morning we can be confident that He is preparing us for the opportunities we will face that day.  Jesus said He was coming and He came to us.

 

12/10          John 1:24-28
Then those who were sent by the Pharisees asked him, “If you aren’t the Messiah or Elijah or the Prophet, what right do you have to baptize?”  John told them, “I baptize with water, but right here in the crowd is someone you do not know, who will soon begin his ministry. I am not even worthy to be his slave.  This incident took place at Bethany, a village east of the Jordan River, where John was baptizing.

ANNOUNCEMENT
The Bible was lived out with real people and real places.  God came to us.  The Creator came to the creature.  We so often miss the magnitude of this great event.  The potter is trying to communicate with the clay.  His desire for us is motivated by His love for us.  When I pray Jesus is listening.  He wants me to accomplish His plan for my life more than I want it.  His focus never wavers even when I lose my way.  He is there waiting for me to come to Him and commune with Him.  Pray in this way “Our Father….”

 

12/11          John 1:29-31
The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look! There is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!  He is the one I was talking about when I said, ‘Soon a man is coming who is far greater than I am, for he existed long before I did.’  I didn’t know he was the one, but I have been baptizing with water in order to point him out to Israel.”

MOMENT
John identified Jesus as the Lamb of God.  Jesus was the one that everyone had been waiting for.  The Lord was now with us and He will never leave us.  I pray to a God who is alive and here.  He knows me, He loves me and He has a plan for my life.  Jesus declares that I have value and purpose.

 

12/12          John 1:32-33
Then John said, “I saw the Holy Spirit descending like a dove from heaven and resting upon him.  I didn’t know he was the one, but when God sent me to baptize with water, he told me, ‘When you see the Holy Spirit descending and resting upon someone, he is the one you are looking for. He is the one who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’

IDENTIFICATION
The Lord will help you to identify His activity in your life.  Our faith is not a myth nor do we believe in a myth.  We believe in Jesus who walked this earth with us and now lives in our hearts.  When we surrender our life to the UNIQUE ONE-Jesus Christ-He lives in our hearts and equips us to live a life of value and worth.  Jesus loves you and me.

 

12/13          John 1:34
I saw this happen to Jesus, so I testify that he is the Son of God.”

TESTIMONY
John the Baptist was obedient.  The Lord revealed His presence to him and John bears testimony that Jesus is God.  He is Lord of all and in all.  God has come to earth and sojourned with His creation.  He lived by faith under our restrictions and we crucified Him.  He saved us.

 

12/14          John 1:35-36
The following day, John was again standing with two of his disciples.  As Jesus walked by, John looked at him and then declared, “Look! There is the Lamb of God!”

HERE
God was here.  We crucified Him and He was resurrected and is here and alive today.  He lives so that we might live.  His grace gift to us is a meaningful life and eternal life.  We belong to Him and He is with us.

 

12/15          John 1:37-39
Then John’s two disciples turned and followed Jesus.  Jesus looked around and saw them following. “What do you want?” he asked them. They replied, “Rabbi” (which means Teacher), “where are you staying?”  “Come and see,” he said. It was about four o’clock in the afternoon when they went with him to the place, and they stayed there the rest of the day.

TEACHER
Jesus came to give us life and to teach us how to live.  His act of love and devotion was so that we would know how God cared for us.  God is love and His love gives us what we are searching for-life like His.

 

12/16          John 1:40-41
Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, was one of these men who had heard what John said and then followed Jesus.  The first thing Andrew did was to find his brother, Simon, and tell him, “We have found the Messiah” (which means the Christ).

BELIEF
When we know Jesus we tell others about Him.  We simply relate what we know-He saved me-He loves me.  When we tell others about what God has done in our life it will prompt them to see what the Lord can do in their life.  Our responsibility is not to make people accept Jesus.  We simply tell others what He has done for us.  They then have the same opportunity we had, to see Him and choose what we would do.

 

12/17          John 1:42
Then Andrew brought Simon to meet Jesus. Looking intently at Simon, Jesus said, “You are Simon, the son of John – but you will be called Cephas” (which means Peter).

KNOWN
You are known by the Lord.  He knows you and is seeking you and would that you might know Him.  It is your choice.  Choose Him.  If you do choose Him determine to do all that He would have you to do.  God loves obedience.

 

12/18          John 1:43-46
The next day Jesus decided to go to Galilee. He found Philip and said to him, “Come, be my disciple.”  Philip was from Bethsaida, Andrew and Peter’s hometown.  Philip went off to look for Nathanael and told him, “We have found the very person Moses and the prophets wrote about! His name is Jesus, the son of Joseph from Nazareth.”  “Nazareth!” exclaimed Nathanael. “Can anything good come from there?” “Just come and see for yourself,” Philip said.

THE CALL
Jesus calls each one of us to come and follow Him.  Some listen and some do not.  Each one of us has an opportunity to come and see.  When we see Him and accept Him we can always be confident that He indeed was calling us because He died for each one of us and is this moment seeking lost souls.  When we come into the family of God we are in the family of God.

 

12/19          John 1:47
As they approached, Jesus said, “Here comes an honest man – a true son of Israel.”  “How do you know about me?” Nathanael asked.  And Jesus replied, “I could see you under the fig tree before Philip found you.”

OBEDIENCE
When we follow Jesus we will know what to do.  He will tell us.  When we obey Jesus He will give us the strength to live with confidence in obedience as we serve Him.  Our service is a part of our walk of faith.

 

12/20          John 1:49-50
Nathanael replied, “Teacher, you are the Son of God – the King of Israel!” Jesus asked him, “Do you believe all this just because I told you I had seen you under the fig tree? You will see greater things than this.”  Then he said, “The truth is, you will all see heaven open and the angels of God going up and down upon the Son of Man.”

BELIEF
I believe in Jesus.  I believe in Jesus because He sought me out.  His truth is not dependent on my word.  He came from His throne in glory and took on the form of a man, living a perfect life and dying for me.  His death paid the cost of my sin.  I believe in the eternal Christ who gave me life and lives this moment in me.

 

12/21          Luke 2:1-4
At that time the Roman emperor, Augustus, decreed that a census should be taken throughout the Roman Empire.  (This was the first census taken when Quirinius was governor of Syria.)  All returned to their own towns to register for this census.  And because Joseph was a descendant of King David, he had to go to Bethlehem in Judea, David’s ancient home. He traveled there from the village of Nazareth in Galilee.

CONTROL
All of us struggle to control our lives.  We want to be safe and find peace and joy.  Jesus is always in control.  Whatever we face, however difficult it may seem it is not out of the Lord’s control.  Jesus has a plan for your life and will guide you in the way you should go.

 

12/22          Luke 2:5-7
He took with him Mary, his fiancé who was obviously pregnant by this time.  And while they were there, the time came for her baby to be born.  She gave birth to her first child, a son. She wrapped him snugly in strips of cloth and laid him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the village inn.

EVENTS
The events in your life do not determine God’s love for you.  His only son Jesus was born in as poor, destitute condition as one could face.  You are of great value to Christ and He loves you.  He has chosen to do this.  He does not base His love on your righteous work.  His love is His gift to each one of His children.

 

12/23          Luke 2:8-14
That night some shepherds were in the fields outside the village, guarding their flocks of sheep.  Suddenly, an angel of the Lord appeared among them, and the radiance of the Lord’s glory surrounded them. They were terribly frightened, but the angel reassured them. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I bring you good news of great joy for everyone!  The Savior – yes, the Messiah, the Lord – has been born tonight in Bethlehem, the city of David!  And this is how you will recognize him: You will find a baby lying in a manger, wrapped snugly in strips of cloth!”  Suddenly, the angel was joined by a vast host of others – the armies of heaven – praising God:  “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and peace on earth to all whom God favors.”

GOOD NEWS
Jesus is good news for you and me.  He is here with us and lives in us.  His presence equips and enables us to live an abundant life.  We do not live a life of quiet desperation.  We are not seeking glory on a world stage.  Our life is valuable in God’s economy and we will have the faith, strength and resources we need to accomplish His plan in us.

 

 

12/24          Luke 2:15-20
When the angels had returned to heaven, the shepherds said to each other, “Come on, let’s go to Bethlehem! Let’s see this wonderful thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”  They ran to the village and found Mary and Joseph. And there was the baby, lying in the manger.  Then the shepherds told everyone what had happened and what the angel had said to them about this child.  All who heard the shepherds’ story were astonished, but Mary quietly treasured these things in her heart and thought about them often.  The shepherds went back to their fields and flocks, glorifying and praising God for what the angels had told them, and because they had seen the child, just as the angel had said.

FOUND
God is looking for us.  He does not forget us.  His love is greater than we can imagine.  The Good News is that we can choose to be found.  As you celebrate Christmas remember who loves you.

 

12/25          Matthew 2:1-2
Jesus was born in the town of Bethlehem in Judea, during the reign of King Herod. About that time some wise men from eastern lands arrived in Jerusalem, asking,  “Where is the newborn king of the Jews? We have seen his star as it arose, and we have come to worship him.”

WORSHIP
We choose to worship.  We choose to honor and serve Jesus.  Today choose to worship Him.  He is the risen Lord and is due all honor and glory.  Take a few minutes today to tell the Lord how much He means to you.  Lord we love you.

 

12/26          Matthew 2:3-4
Herod was deeply disturbed by their question, as was all of Jerusalem.  He called a meeting of the leading priests and teachers of religious law. “Where did the prophets say the Messiah would be born?” he asked them.

BIRTH
The world worships knowledge.  We can worship the Lord.  Our choice is simple-will we follow Jesus in obedience?  When we accept Christ as our Lord and Savior (He still is whether we accept it or not) so many things become clear.  His Word speaks wisdom and guidance to us.

 

12/27          Matthew 2:5-6
“In Bethlehem,” they said, “for this is what the prophet wrote:  ‘O Bethlehem of Judah, you are not just a lowly village in Judah, for a ruler will come from you who will be the shepherd for my people Israel.’ ”

VALUE
What the world values the Lord disdains.  Sin has a death grip on mankind.  Only in Christ can we break the bondage of sin and permit the Lord to stamp our lives with His judgment.  His judgment of us is that we are the beloved and have great value to Him.

 

12/28          Matthew 2:7-8
Then Herod sent a private message to the wise men, asking them to come see him. At this meeting he learned the exact time when they first saw the star.  Then he told them, “Go to Bethlehem and search carefully for the child. And when you find him, come back and tell me so that I can go and worship him, too!”

SEARCHING
What we search for we often get.  If we are searching for power we may get it but we will discover the worthlessness of power.  Fame is an evil taskmaster.  Wealth seduces and abuses us.  When we search for Jesus we will find Him.  We will discover that Jesus has been searching for us all of our life.  When we bend our knee in submission to Him as Lord and Savior we find our searching is over.  Jesus is God’s everything.

 

12/29          Matthew 2:9-10
After this interview the wise men went their way. Once again the star appeared to them, guiding them to Bethlehem. It went ahead of them and stopped over the place where the child was.  When they saw the star, they were filled with joy!

JOURNEY
Jesus never leaves us on our personal journey of life.  He will not abandon us nor does he wait for us to perform to some expected norm for Him to listen to us or hear us.  Jesus wants to be involved in every aspect of our life.  Let Him have control of you.

 

12/30          Matthew 2:11
They entered the house where the child and his mother, Mary, were, and they fell down before him and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasure chests and gave him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.

WORSHIP
Worship Jesus.  He is worthy of all of our love and adoration.  His character is love.  He gives each one of us value and worth daily.  Our life is a struggle but Jesus will see us through.

 

12/31          Matthew 2:12
But when it was time to leave, they went home another way, because God had warned them in a dream not to return to Herod.

DIRECTION
A new year is begins tomorrow.  Let Jesus give you direction for this New Year.  Let Christ have control of your life.  Spend time with Him each day.  Spend enough time with Jesus to hear what He is saying to you.

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Clay Corvin

Clay Corvin is Co-Pastor at Bethel Community Baptist Church. He is the VP Business and Professor of Admin at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. He was the pastor at the Brantley Baptist Center for twenty-five years. He is married to Carol Corvin and the father of three children and has three grandchildren.