Today's Good News

July 2008

7/1              Galatians 3:1
Oh, foolish Galatians! What magician has cast an evil spell on you? For you used to see the meaning of Jesus Christ’s death as clearly as though I had shown you a signboard with a picture of Christ dying on the cross.

CROSS
The cross is repugnant to the world.  The world does things its way.  Reason reaches out to turn us aside from faith.  Why, is the condemning question, as though we could understand why if we were told.  Claim Jesus.  Claim His love for you.  When things turn bad you need to turn to Christ.

 

7/2              Galatians 3:2-3
Let me ask you this one question: Did you receive the Holy Spirit by keeping the law? Of course not, for the Holy Spirit came upon you only after you believed the message you heard about Christ.  Have you lost your senses? After starting your Christian lives in the Spirit, why are you now trying to become perfect by your own human effort?

JESUS
It is all about Jesus.  We are striving to grow in Christ and by faith we know that day by day we will.  There will be victories and failures but the bottom line is that we will continue growing into Christ likeness.  Remember, we are saved by Jesus, given life by Jesus and we will go to be with Him at death.

 

7/3              Galatians 3:4-5
You have suffered so much for the Good News. Surely it was not in vain, was it? Are you now going to just throw it all away?  I ask you again, does God give you the Holy Spirit and work miracles among you because you obey the Law of Moses? Of course not! It is because you believe the message you heard about Christ.

FAITH
Faith is hard for humans to get a handle on and is difficult to identify except by the Word of God.  The Lord said so I believe it.  This kind of faith equips us to face the attacks of the world and the world will attack our faith.  Faith is our connection with the Lord and is based on His commitment in His Word to us.

 

7/4              Galatians 3:6-8
In the same way, “Abraham believed God, so God declared him righteous because of his faith.”   The real children of Abraham, then, are all those who put their faith in God.  What’s more, the Scriptures looked forward to this time when God would accept the Gentiles, too, on the basis of their faith. God promised this good news to Abraham long ago when he said, “All nations will be blessed through you.”

FAITH
God is trustworthy.  He willingly listens to our complaints.  The bottom line is that we have to choose whether we will trust Him with our lives or try to live our life on our own.

 

7/5              Galatians 3:9
And so it is: All who put their faith in Christ share the same blessing Abraham received because of his faith.

CHOICE
When we choose to trust the Lord and have faith in His promises we are blessed.  We have His peace and His presence.  We can listen to Him as He speaks to us.  The examples of faith in the Bible are there so that we can know that when we live like that we will have the same kind of relationship that those heroes of the faith had.  The Lord doesn’t trick us, He loves us and is seeking for our best good.

 

7/6              Galatians 3:10
But those who depend on the law to make them right with God are under his curse, for the Scriptures say, “Cursed is everyone who does not observe and obey all these commands that are written in God’s Book of the Law.”

CHOICE
When we choose to go our own way and decide on our own how the Lord should deal with us we lose.  We lose because He has told us how He deals with us.  We lose because it is presumption.  We lose because the simple truth is that without faith it is impossible for us to believe Him.

 

7/7              Galatians 3:11
Consequently, it is clear that no one can ever be right with God by trying to keep the law. For the Scriptures say, “It is through faith that a righteous person has life.”

FAITH
We are saved by faith.  Without faith there is no salvation.  Without faith we have no relationship.  Believe in the Lord Jesus and you shall be saved.

 

7/8              Galatians 3:12
How different from this way of faith is the way of law, which says, “If you wish to find life by obeying the law, you must obey all of its commands.”

WEAK
One thing you will discover is that humans, including you are weak.  We cannot meet the demands of the law.  Jesus does for us what we cannot do for ourselves-He takes the punishment for our sin.  Praise the Lord for His wonderful plan of Salvation.

 

7/9              Galatians 3:13-14
But Christ has rescued us from the curse pronounced by the law. When he was hung on the cross, he took upon himself the curse for our wrongdoing. For it is written in the Scriptures, “Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree.”    Through the work of Christ Jesus, God has blessed the Gentiles with the same blessing he promised to Abraham, and we Christians receive the promised Holy Spirit through faith.

SALVATION
We have access to the Father when we come to Christ.  He is Lord.  Jesus brings us into the family of God.  He gives us life and light.

 

7/10            Galatians 3:15-16
Dear brothers and sisters, here’s an example from everyday life. Just as no one can set aside or amend an irrevocable agreement, so it is in this case.  God gave the promise to Abraham and his child.  And notice that it doesn’t say the promise was to his children, as if it meant many descendants. But the promise was to his child – and that, of course, means Christ.

GOOD NEWS
Christ has come.  He came for you and me.  He is alive today interceding for us as He sits at the right hand of the Father.  Jesus is Lord.

 

7/11            Galatians 3:17-18
This is what I am trying to say: The agreement God made with Abraham could not be canceled 430 years later when God gave the law to Moses. God would be breaking his promise.  For if the inheritance could be received only by keeping the law, then it would not be the result of accepting God’s promise. But God gave it to Abraham as a promise.

GIFT
Jesus came for us.  He came that we might have life.  In the midst of a perverse generation He comes to us as savior and friend.  He is Lord.

 

7/12            Galatians 3:19
Well then, why was the law given? It was given to show people how guilty they are. But this system of law was to last only until the coming of the child to whom God’s promise was made. And there is this further difference. God gave his laws to angels to give to Moses, who was the mediator between God and the people.

NEW DAY
We live in a new day.  We have Jesus who calls us, saves us, leads us and will be present when we leave this world for eternity.  He provides forgiveness for our sin and wisdom for living.  He is God’s everything.

 

7/13            Galatians 3:20
Now a mediator is needed if two people enter into an agreement, but God acted on his own when he made his promise to Abraham.

PROVISION
Christ has made provision for us.  He gives us the authority to receive salvation.  It is our choice.  He said call upon me and I will save you.  What a Savior.  From Him we receive grace upon grace and it never depletes His grace.

 

7/14            Galatians 3:21-22
Well then, is there a conflict between God’s law and God’s promises? Absolutely not! If the law could have given us new life, we could have been made right with God by obeying it.  But the Scriptures have declared that we are all prisoners of sin, so the only way to receive God’s promise is to believe in Jesus Christ.

FORGIVENESS
Jesus provides forgiveness for our sin.  He makes peace with the Father for us.  We become a member of God’s family.  He gives us new life.  He becomes a part of our daily life.  He is Lord.

 

7/15            Galatians 3:23-26
Until faith in Christ was shown to us as the way of becoming right with God, we were guarded by the law. We were kept in protective custody, so to speak, until we could put our faith in the coming Savior.  Let me put it another way. The law was our guardian and teacher to lead us until Christ came. So now, through faith in Christ, we are made right with God.  But now that faith in Christ has come, we no longer need the law as our guardian.  So you are all children of God through faith in Christ Jesus.

WAY
Our way is sure in Christ.  He is our light and life.  As we read God’s Word, the Bible, Jesus will speak to us and tell us how we should live.  He is alive in us and brings His Word to life so that we might live like He would live.

 

7/16            Galatians 3:27
And all who have been united with Christ in baptism have been made like him.

GROWTH
We will become more like Jesus day by day.  He would that we know His plan for our life and specifically what He would have us do.  As we get to know Him better He will change the way we act to the way He acts.

 

7/17            Galatians 3:28-29
There is no longer Jew or Gentile, slave or free, male or female. For you are all Christians – you are one in Christ Jesus.  And now that you belong to Christ, you are the true children of Abraham. You are his heirs, and now all the promises God gave to him belong to you.

PROMISES
There are more than 7,000 promises in the Bible written to us.  Search for those promises each day and claim them for your life.  He is alive and He is Lord.

 

7/18            Galatians 4:1-3
Think of it this way. If a father dies and leaves great wealth for his young children, those children are not much better off than slaves until they grow up, even though they actually own everything their father had.  They have to obey their guardians until they reach whatever age their father set.  And that’s the way it was with us before Christ came. We were slaves to the spiritual powers of this world.

FREEDOM
Whatever you are struggling with today, do not fear, Jesus has you on His heart.  In Christ you are free from the power of the world.  Rejoice because in Jesus you are free indeed.

 

7/19            Galatians 4:4
But when the right time came, God sent his Son, born of a woman, subject to the law.

NOW
Now is the day of salvation.  Now is the time to take your problems to the Lord.  We are now in Christ and He is able to deal with the problems in our life.  We need to know Him better.  We need to spend enough time with Him so that we instantly take everything to Him.  Rejoice, now is the time of the Lord.

 

7/20            Galatians 4:5-7
God sent him to buy freedom for us who were slaves to the law, so that he could adopt us as his very own children.  And because you Gentiles have become his children, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, and now you can call God your dear Father.  Now you are no longer a slave but God’s own child.  And since you are his child, everything he has belongs to you.

ONE
We are one in Christ.  In Jesus we are brought into the family of God.  We belong to Him.  He is our dear Father and we have the right to cry out for His help.  Christ has freed us and united us.

 

7/21            Galatians 4:8-11
Before you Gentiles knew God, you were slaves to so-called gods that do not even exist.  And now that you have found God (or should I say, now that God has found you), why do you want to go back again and become slaves once more to the weak and useless spiritual powers of this world?  You are trying to find favor with God by what you do or don’t do on certain days or months or seasons or years.  I fear for you. I am afraid that all my hard work for you was worth nothing.

FREE
We have freedom in Jesus.  He has set us free from fear, our past, and the world.  He has a plan for our life.  We are valuable.  We have real life in Jesus Christ.

 

7/22            Galatians 4:12
Dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to live as I do in freedom from these things, for I have become like you Gentiles were – free from the law.  You did not mistreat me when I first preached to you.

TRUST
We trust the Lord to do what He said He would do-we are alive in Christ and free from the slavery of sin.  Jesus is Lord and we are part of His family.

 

7/23            Galatians 4:13-16
Surely you remember that I was sick when I first brought you the Good News of Christ.  But even though my sickness was revolting to you, you did not reject me and turn me away. No, you took me in and cared for me as though I were an angel from God or even Christ Jesus himself.  Where is that joyful spirit we felt together then? In those days, I know you would gladly have taken out your own eyes and given them to me if it had been possible.  Have I now become your enemy because I am telling you the truth?

LOVE
God’s love towards us is an action.  The Lord loves us so much that even knowing all about us He paid the price for our sin.  His sacrifice paid a price I could not pay.  His act of love provided me the gift of eternal life.  Love is an action.  Who do you love?

 

7/24            Galatians 4:17-18
Those false teachers who are so anxious to win your favor are not doing it for your good. They are trying to shut you off from me so that you will pay more attention to them.  Now it’s wonderful if you are eager to do good, and especially when I am not with you.

TRUTH
Truth is measured by God’s Word.  As complex as the world is and as confusing as daily life can get the TRUTH is Jesus is Lord and we can put our trust in Him.  No one else is even on the scale.  Only Jesus is totally trustworthy.  When people are telling us things that seem to denigrate those that we know and love it would benefit us to withhold judgment as we seek the truth.

 

7/25            Galatians 4:19-20
But oh, my dear children! I feel as if I am going through labor pains for you again, and they will continue until Christ is fully developed in your lives.  How I wish I were there with you right now, so that I could be more gentle with you. But at this distance I frankly don’t know what else to do.

PEOPLE
People count with Jesus.  They count more than buildings or things.  Jesus died for us and we are people.  Remember that the people you know and deal with everyday are the people for whom Jesus died.

 

7/26            Galatians 4:21-23
Listen to me, you who want to live under the law. Do you know what the law really says?  The Scriptures say that Abraham had two sons, one from his slave-wife and one from his freeborn wife.  The son of the slave-wife was born in a human attempt to bring about the fulfillment of God’s promise. But the son of the freeborn wife was born as God’s own fulfillment of his promise.

SELF
We will always get in trouble when we try to do spiritual things in the flesh.  We may be brilliant but our brilliance is but foolish before the Lord.  Our best efforts at seeing the future are but shots in the dark.  Are you facing a great problem?  Trust Jesus and obey Him.  His way is always the right way.  He loves you and me.

 

7/27            Galatians 4:24-25
Now these two women serve as an illustration of God’s two covenants. Hagar, the slave-wife, represents Mount Sinai where people first became enslaved to the law.  And now Jerusalem is just like Mount Sinai in Arabia, because she and her children live in slavery.

CHOICE
We have a choice; we can choose God’s way or our way.  Time with Jesus helps us to make good choices.  Knowing Him better helps us walk through this veil of tears.  Knowing Him better equips us to face the unknown.

 

7/28            Galatians 4:26-27
But Sarah, the free woman, represents the heavenly Jerusalem. And she is our mother.  That is what Isaiah meant when he prophesied, “Rejoice, O childless woman! Break forth into loud and joyful song, even though you never gave birth to a child. For the woman who could bear no children now has more than all the other women!”

REJOICE
Rejoice for the Lord loves you.  He has your best interest at heart.  Every thought He has towards you is a thought for good.  Claim His guidance and presence.  Spend time with Jesus because He loves you.

 

7/29            Galatians 4:28
And you, dear brothers and sisters, are children of the promise, just like Isaac.

PROMISE
We are members of His household.  This world is just a brief interlude to eternity.  We are to run the race with the full realization that we belong to Him.  Jesus is Lord and wants to be Lord of our life.  If we yield to Him we will reign with Him.  If we seek our own way we will fail miserably.  Claim His promise of new life and light for living.

 

7/30            Galatians 4:29
And we who are born of the Holy Spirit are persecuted by those who want us to keep the law, just as Isaac, the child of promise, was persecuted by Ishmael, the son of the slave-wife.

DEMANDS
Everyone who is lost makes foolish demands of those who are the children of God.  You nor I can change the way things are.  Evil is rampant.  Lost people always act like lost people.  What we can do is grow to be more like Jesus.  We can pray for others especially the lost.  We can live with hope.  We can be loving and helpful.  Jesus loves you and wants to use you as His representative to the world.

 

7/31            Galatians 4:30-31
But what do the Scriptures say about that? “Get rid of the slave and her son, for the son of the slave woman will not share the family inheritance with the free woman’s son.”  So, dear brothers and sisters, we are not children of the slave woman, obligated to the law. We are children of the free woman, acceptable to God because of our faith.

FAITH
Faith takes real courage.  We cannot see but we believe.  We experience the woes and travail of the world and yet we have the confidence of one who sees beyond the veil of this life knowing that we are loved and the beloved of the Lord.  We belong to Him and are on mission for Him.  Jesus is our goal.  This world has no hold over us and we rejoice in Him by faith.

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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.