Every Day With Jesus

Daily Devotionals from Pastor Quintin Stieff

Real Peace

Today's Scripture

 

John 16:29-33 (NIV)

 

29 Then Jesus' disciples said, "Now you are speaking clearly and without figures of speech. 

30 Now we can see that you know all things and that you do not even need to have anyone ask you questions. This makes us believe that you came from God."

31 "You believe at last!" Jesus answered. 

32 "But a time is coming, and has come, when you will be scattered, each to his own home. You will leave me all alone. Yet I am not alone, for my Father is with me.

33 "I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world."

 

Today's Message

 

real peace

 

We live in a world filled with war and endless conflict. One person has described peace in this world as the time it takes for the nations to reload.

The believer in Christ also faces many conflicts. In addition to the everyday conflicts of nations and individuals, the Christian encounters opposition from a world that rejects the things of God.

In the face of all this hostility, warfare, and conflict, Jesus promises peace. He also makes the promise that we will face trouble, and then he adds: "But take heart! I have overcome the world."

The peace we can have is that ultimately Jesus triumphs over sin, death, evil, war, and danger. He has the final say and the final victory.

Where is our peace found? Not in circumstances! "I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace." Where's the peace? Two words: "in me." Peace is found only in a day-to-day encounter with the risen Christ. Peace comes as we interact with Christ and trust in him in every circumstance.

Take your troubles to Christ today. In him, you will find real peace.

Posted by Valley Church Communications at Sunday, April 22, 2018

Opposite Reactions

Today's Scripture

 

John 16:17-28 (NIV)

 

17 Some of his disciples said to one another, "What does he mean by saying, 'In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me,' and 'Because I am going to the Father'?" 

18 They kept asking, "What does he mean by 'a little while'? We don't understand what he is saying."

19 Jesus saw that they wanted to ask him about this, so he said to them, "Are you asking one another what I meant when I said, 'In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me'? 

20 I tell you the truth, you will weep and mourn while the world rejoices. You will grieve, but your grief will turn to joy. 

21 A woman giving birth to a child has pain because her time has come; but when her baby is born she forgets the anguish because of her joy that a child is born into the world. 

22 So with you: Now is your time of grief, but I will see you again and you will rejoice, and no one will take away your joy. 

23 In that day you will no longer ask me anything. I tell you the truth, my Father will give you whatever you ask in my name. 

24 Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete.

25 "Though I have been speaking figuratively, a time is coming when I will no longer use this kind of language but will tell you plainly about my Father. 

26 In that day you will ask in my name. I am not saying that I will ask the Father on your behalf. 

27 No, the Father himself loves you because you have loved me and have believed that I came from God. 

28 I came from the Father and entered the world; now I am leaving the world and going back to the Father."

 

Today's Message

 

opposite reactions

 

One of the things you'll notice in the Bible is that often believers and the world have exactly the opposite reactions to events and circumstances. When the world is laughing, the believer is crying. When the world is celebrating, the believer is mourning. When the world is weeping, the believer is shouting for joy.

Jesus tells his disciples that (at his death) they will experience grief while the world celebrates. But then again, when he is raised from the dead, they will rejoice as the world carries on in misery.

These truths are an encouragement to us not to give up hope. In the darkest hour, God may be just ready to reveal an incredible reason for joy.

Scripture repeatedly warns us to never envy the wicked. Their joy and pleasure right now will be very short lived. The Christian understands that his hard times are brief, and that his joys are everlasting.

As the old hymn states:

"Fading is the world's best pleasure, all its boasted pomp and show.
Solid joys and lasting treasure, none but Zion's children know."

Posted by Valley Church Communications at Saturday, April 21, 2018

The Spirit's Work

Today's Scripture

 

John 16:12-16 (NIV)

 

12 "I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. 

13 But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. 

14 He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you. 

15 All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will take from what is mine and make it known to you.

16 "In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me."

 

Today's Message

 

the spirit's work

 

Look at the ways the Spirit of God is at work today:

  • He guides us into all truth.
  • He leads us to understand what God has revealed.
  • He brings glory to Christ by helping us to know what Jesus has taught.

These are no small things. Without the Spirit of God indwelling us, we would not and we could not understand the Bible. Though we could read the words, we would not understand the depth of their meaning and their true application. Without the Spirit of God, we would not even desire to obey the teachings of the Lord, we would not have the power to follow through on our desire to follow Christ, and we would be helpless and powerless.

The Spirit of God is not a force or power or energy. The Spirit of God is the third person of the Trinity. He is personal. He indwells believers everywhere. He lives within us.

Did you forget that he is with you always? Today, perhaps you could pray or even sing the old chorus:

Spirit of the Living God, fall afresh on me.
Spirit of the Living God, fall afresh on me.

Melt me, mold me, fill me, use me.

Spirit of the Living God, fall afresh on me.

Posted by Valley Church Communications at Friday, April 20, 2018

We're Never Alone

Today's Scripture

 

John 16:5-11 (NIV)

 

5 "Now I am going to him who sent me, yet none of you asks me, 'Where are you going?' 

6 Because I have said these things, you are filled with grief. 

7 But I tell you the truth: It is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Counselor will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you. 

8 When he comes, he will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgment: 

9 in regard to sin, because men do not believe in me; 

10 in regard to righteousness, because I am going to the Father, where you can see me no longer; 

11 and in regard to judgment, because the prince of this world now stands condemned.

 

Today's Message

 

We're never alone

 

The good news for the follower of Jesus is that he or she is never truly alone. Though the world hates him and even his friends desert him, he is never truly left alone or abandoned.

Why is this true? It's true because after Jesus ascended into heaven (physically left his disciples), he sent his Holy Spirit to indwell every believer. Today, if you are a true believer in Christ, then God's Holy Spirit lives within you. God himself dwells within your heart to empower, encourage, lead, guide, comfort, and sustain you.

The Holy Spirit also convicts those in the world around us of sin and righteousness and judgment. He is active in the world, convicting people of sin, and drawing people to faith in Christ.

Yes, the world is a hostile place for the believer to live. But we're not abandoned or forsaken. The Holy Spirit of God is always there.

Posted by Valley Church Communications at Thursday, April 19, 2018

Human Sacrifice as Worship

Today's Scripture

 

John 15:26-16:4 (NIV)

 

26 "When the Counselor comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who goes out from the Father, he will testify about me. 

27 And you also must testify, for you have been with me from the beginning.

16:1 "All this I have told you so that you will not go astray. 

2 They will put you out of the synagogue; in fact, a time is coming when anyone who kills you will think he is offering a service to God. 

3 They will do such things because they have not known the Father or me. 

4 I have told you this, so that when the time comes you will remember that I warned you. I did not tell you this at first because I was with you.

 

Today's Message

 

human sacrifice as worship

 

One of the most shocking statements of Jesus is found in our passage today:

"They will put you out of the synagogue; in fact, a time is coming when anyone who kills you will think he is offering a service to God."

The word "service" in that verse connotes more than just doing something for God or working hard for God. It actually has worship overtones. "Service" is used in the New Testament to describe duties or rituals carried out in the worship of the Lord.

So, Jesus warns, there will come a day when people will think that killing a Christian is a sacrifice pleasing to God. It is an offering of worship to the Deity.

"Say it ain't so!" you say. But sadly, it is so. Church history records countless examples when people mistakenly believed that executing a true follower of Christ was precisely what God wanted them to do in service to him.

Of course, most of these people believed that those Christians they were killing were worthy of death because they were heretics, rebels, apostates, or demonically-inspired. They were sincere in their hostility, but horribly wrong.

The apostle Paul reminds us of what we are to expect in a confused, fallen, and evil world:

"In fact, everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted."(2 Timothy 3:12)

If you encounter opposition to your faith, don't despair. You are standing in a long line of heroes of the faith who have gone before us. Stand firm and do not be discouraged.

Posted by Valley Church Communications at Wednesday, April 18, 2018