Every Day With Jesus

Daily Devotionals from Pastor Quintin Stieff

The Call to Justice

Today's Scripture

Read Psalm 82 (NIV)

A psalm of Asaph.

God presides in the great assembly;
    he renders judgment among the “gods”:
“How long will you defend the unjust
    and show partiality to the wicked?
Defend the weak and the fatherless;
    uphold the cause of the poor and the oppressed.
Rescue the weak and the needy;
    deliver them from the hand of the wicked.
“The ‘gods’ know nothing, they understand nothing.
    They walk about in darkness;
    all the foundations of the earth are shaken.
“I said, ‘You are “gods”;
    you are all sons of the Most High.’
But you will die like mere mortals;
    you will fall like every other ruler.”
Rise up, O God, judge the earth,
    for all the nations are your inheritance.

Today's Message

The Call to Justice

God calls his people and human governments to pursue justice. This includes:

  • Defending the weak and the fatherless
  • Upholding the cause of the poor and the oppressed
  • Rescuing the weak and the needy

God has a huge heart for the down and outers of this world, for the people that the world overlooks. He calls on us to care and to show compassion in an aggressive and meaningful way.

Are the needs of the poor, needy, weak, fatherless and oppressed on your radar? We can all do something – whether it’s personally serving, opening our homes, contributing financially, serving meals, or showing compassion to the poor or orphans or widows.

What if every believer said, “I’m going to do something significant for at least one person in my life who is less fortunate than I”? Can you imagine the impact it would have?

You can’t help everyone. But you can help one. Help the one.

Posted by Valley Church Communications at Thursday, July 20, 2017 | 0 comments

Giving Us What We Want

Today's Scripture

Read Psalm 81 (NIV)

For the director of music. According to gittith. Of Asaph.
 
11 "But my people would not listen to me;
    Israel would not submit to me. 
12 So I gave them over to their stubborn hearts
    to follow their own devices.
13 "If my people would only listen to me,
    if Israel would only follow my ways, 
14 how quickly I would subdue their enemies
    and turn my hand against their foes! 
15 Those who hate the Lord would cringe before him,
    and their punishment would last forever. 
16 But you would be fed with the finest of wheat;
    with honey from the rock I would satisfy you."

Today's Message

Giving Us What We Want

It's common for people to criticize the God of the Bible because he appears to them vindictive or hurtful in his judgment. How could God punish people like that?

The reality is that God gives people what they want! He "gives them over to their stubborn hearts." Here's how it goes:

  1. God calls people to trust and follow him, promising them blessing and victory if only they will trust Him and obey.

  2. People rebel, not trusting God, but instead trusting their own hearts.

  3. God pleads with them not to turn away, but to turn to Him and be restored and refreshed.

  4. They stubbornly continue to want their own way (instead of God's way of blessing).

  5. Finally, God "gives them over" to what they want. They want their own way - living life separately from God. This inevitably leads to chaos, sorrow, defeat, and eventually death.

Human beings were not wired to live apart from God. Satan has deceived the human race into thinking that God is holding out on us. God, he convinces us, wants to ruin and restrict our joy. Meanwhile God offers life and hope and peace in a relationship with Him.

God always promises us: Trust and follow me and "I will satisfy you."

Posted by Valley Church Communications at Wednesday, July 19, 2017 | 0 comments

Listen and Be Filled!

Today's Scripture

Read Psalm 81 (NIV)

For the director of music. According to gittith. Of Asaph.

When God went out against Egypt,
    he established it as a statute for Joseph.
    I heard an unknown voice say:
“I removed the burden from their shoulders;
    their hands were set free from the basket.
In your distress you called and I rescued you,
    I answered you out of a thundercloud;
    I tested you at the waters of Meribah.
Hear me, my people, and I will warn you—
    if you would only listen to me, Israel!
You shall have no foreign god among you;
    you shall not worship any god other than me.
10 I am the Lord your God,
    who brought you up out of Egypt.
    Open wide your mouth and I will fill it.

Today's Message

Listen and Be Filled!

The purpose of God’s deliverance and his commands are not to shrink our lives to a miserable existence, barely surviving as cloistered monks, and grimly buckling under his heavy hand to a life of diminished opportunity.

It’s just the opposite: 

“You shall have no foreign god among you;
    you shall not worship any god other than me.
I am the Lord your God,
    who brought you up out of Egypt.
    Open wide your mouth and I will fill it.”

Did you catch that last line? “Open your mouth and I will fill it.” It’s a promise of satisfaction and fulfillment.

Satan has fooled us (starting with Adam and Eve) into thinking that God is holding out on us. He gets us to think that there is so much of the world out there that I could enjoy, but God has me shut up inside this little prison with scraps of bread tossed to me every once in a while.

It’s all a lie. Rather, God promises us: “Open wide your mouth and I will fill it!”

Do you think of your life as God rationing out meagre portions or as a sumptuous banquet with unlimited portions?

We’re not referring to material wealth and actual food. We’re talking about spiritual riches, the joy of living, and the peace that passes understanding.

God is generous. Obey him. And find out how generous he can be!

Posted by Valley Church Communications at Tuesday, July 18, 2017 | 0 comments

Worship is All About God

Today's Scripture

Read Psalm 81 (NIV)

For the director of music. According to gittith. Of Asaph.

Sing for joy to God our strength;
    shout aloud to the God of Jacob!
Begin the music, strike the timbrel,
    play the melodious harp and lyre.
Sound the ram’s horn at the New Moon,
    and when the moon is full, on the day of our festival;
this is a decree for Israel,
    an ordinance of the God of Jacob.

Today's Message

Worship is All About God

Worship involves a lot of things. Asaph mentions singing, shouting, music of various instruments, even the loud sounds of the ram’s horn. All of those are parts of the human response of awe and wonder at who God is. But worship is not focused primarily on the style of music or the types of instruments, or the hour or day of the week, or even the volume. Worship in Israel’s day was quiet and loud, vocal and instrumental, day and night, and with all kinds of moods and environments.

But mostly and centrally, worship is about God. It’s a shame that church people focus on all the incidentals of worship (music, instruments, volume, order, time, environment, and other things). These are all secondary – if that! I can virtually guarantee that most of us would feel quite out of place culturally in the style of worship in the time of Asaph or even of Jesus or Paul.

So, relax about the incidentals. You don’t need to express an opinion about what you like or don’t like. Instead, focus on God, pray to God, give thanks to God, worship God! Take your focus off the elements of worship and instead focus on the God we worship!

Posted by Valley Church Communications at Monday, July 17, 2017 | 0 comments

The Man at Your Right Hand

Today's Scripture

Read Psalm 80 (NIV)

For the director of music. To the tune of “The Lilies of the Covenant.” Of Asaph. A psalm.

14 Return to us, God Almighty!
    Look down from heaven and see!
   Watch over this vine,
15  the root your right hand has planted,
    the son you have raised up for yourself.
16 
Your vine is cut down, it is burned with fire;
    at your rebuke your people perish.
17 Let your hand rest on the man at your right hand,
    the son of man you have raised up for yourself.
18 Then we will not turn away from you;
    revive us, and we will call on your name.
19 
Restore us, Lord God Almighty;
    make your face shine on us,
    that we may be saved.

Today's Message

The Man at Your Right Hand

Jesus is the obvious answer and fulfillment to the prayer of Asaph. He is the Vine that is fruitful. He is the man at the right hand of God. He is the son of man (a title for Messiah) who was sent from the Lord to deliver us and who was quite literally “raised up.”

When he came, Jesus fulfilled the longings of this prayer. Consider v. 18-19…

  • Then we will not turn away from you – Jesus brought repentance
  • Revive us – Jesus brought a new birth and new life
  • and we will call on your name – Jesus gives faith so people will call on God
  • Restore us, Lord God Almighty – Jesus brings restoration with God
  • make your face shine on us – Jesus is the light of the world
  • that we may be saved – Jesus is the Savior

Line by line, Jesus completely fulfills the requests of this prayer.

For all you need, Jesus Christ is the answer!

Posted by Valley Church Communications at Sunday, July 16, 2017 | 0 comments