Our Daily Bread — New Vision

Bible in a Year:

I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.

Isaiah 43:19

Today’s Scripture & Insight:

Isaiah 43:18–21

Wearing my new eyeglasses as I stepped into the sanctuary, I sat down and spotted a friend sitting directly across the aisle on the other side of the church. As I waved at her, she looked so near and clear. It felt like I could reach out and touch her even though she was several yards away. Later, as we talked following the service, I realized she was in the same seat she always sat in. I simply could see her better because of an upgraded prescription in my new spectacles.

God, speaking through the prophet Isaiah, knew that the Israelites stuck in Babylonian captivity would need a new prescription—a new view. He told them. “I am doing a new thing! . . . I am making a way in the wilderness” (Isaiah 43:19). And His message of hope included the reminders that He had “created” them, “redeemed” them, and would be with them. “You are mine,” He encouraged them (v. 1).

In whatever you’re facing today, the Holy Spirit can provide better vision for you to put the old behind you and look for the new. By God’s love (v. 4), it’s popping up all around you. Can you see what He’s doing in the midst of your pain and bondage? Let’s put on our new spiritual glasses to see the new that God is doing even in our wilderness moments. 

By:  Katara Patton

Reflect & Pray

What new things do you see cropping up even in your wilderness? How can adjusting your vision help you focus on the new rather than the past?

God of new beginnings, thank You for all Your promises. Help me to see the new that You bring about even in my wilderness moments.


Grace to You; John MacArthur – Understand Your Spiritual Resources

“God…has blessed us with every spiritual blessing” (Eph. 1:3, emphasis added).

As a Christian, you possess every spiritual resource you need to fulfill God’s will for your life.

The story is told of a wealthy London businessman who searched many years for his runaway son. One afternoon he was preparing to board a train to London when he spotted a man in ragged, dirty clothing begging money from passengers along the station platform. His first impulse was to avoid the beggar but there was something strangely familiar about him.

When the beggar approached and asked if he could spare a few shillings, the businessman realized he had found his long-lost son. With tears in his eyes and joy in his voice he embraced his son, crying, “A few shillings? You are my son—everything I have is yours!”

That pictures many Christians who are ignorant or negligent of their spiritual resources. They are children of the King, yet live like spiritual paupers.

Paul repeatedly emphasized our sufficiency as believers. In Colossians 2:10 he declares that in Christ “you have been made complete.” In Philippians 4:13 and 19 he says, “I can do all things through Him who strengthens me” and “my God shall supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.” Peter added that God’s “divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness” (2 Pet. 1:3).

The word translated “spiritual” in Ephesians 1:3 speaks of the work of the Holy Spirit. Every blessing you receive, whether material or immaterial, has God as its source.

As a Christian, you possess every spiritual resource you need to fulfill God’s will for your life. You needn’t pray for more love, for example, because His love is already poured out in your heart through the Holy Spirit (Rom. 5:5). The same is true of joy (John 15:11), peace (John 14:27), strength (Phil. 4:13)—and every other resource you need. The key to spiritual progress and victory is learning to apply what you already have, not seeking more.

Suggestions for Prayer

  • Praise God for His abundant spiritual resources.
  • Ask Him to help you apply them with wisdom and consistency.

For Further Study

Read Matthew 6:25-34 and Philippians 4:6-8.

  • What specific promises does God make in those passages?
  • What does He require of you?

From Drawing Near by John MacArthur


Joyce Meyer – Righteousness and Peace

Love and faithfulness meet together; righteousness and peace kiss each other.

— Psalm 85:10 (NIV)

I love today’s scripture because it teaches us that in order to have God’s mercy, we must face truth, and that peace only comes from understanding righteousness with God. Jesus says that if we continue in His Word, then we will know the truth and it will set us free (see John 8:32). Some people avoid the truth because it is often painful to face. However, it is the only thing that makes us free. Once we face truth, we can ask for and receive God’s mercy.

In order to have peace with God, we must understand what it means to be in right standing with God through faith in Christ. When we know we are made right with God and that He loves and accepts us, we can have and enjoy peace with Him. If we don’t have peace with Him, we cannot enjoy peace with ourselves or with other people.

Jesus, who was perfect and knew no sin, became sin that we might be made the righteousness of God in Christ (see 2 Corinthians 5:21). Receive your right standing with God through faith, and it will be life changing. You need not always feel that something is wrong with you, because God sees you as right through your faith in Jesus. We don’t do everything right, but God’s righteousness has been given to us as a gift, and the more we believe it, the more our actions will be right also.

Prayer of the Day: Father, thank You for mercy, righteousness, and peace. These are wonderful blessings from You, and I appreciate them and want to walk in them fully. Teach me to receive and enjoy the gifts You have given to me.


Truth for Life; Alistair Begg – From Precepts to Promises

This is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares the Lord: I will put my laws into their minds, and write them on their hearts, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.

Hebrews 8:10

The law of God is a masterpiece, revealing our deep guilt and, at the same time, graciously teaching unholy people how to approach a holy God in worship. Its instructions form a carefully assembled tapestry; if one thread is pulled, the entire thing unravels.

This means that there are no small matters in the law. When we break a single command, we become guilty of violating the entire thing. James tells us this frankly: “For whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become guilty of all of it” (James 2:10). The law is not like a pile of stones, from which you can take one stone away and still have a heap. Rather, it is like a sheet of glass: a single crack compromises the whole thing. Why? Because God’s law is no arbitrary set of rules and regulations; it is an expression of the character and nature of our perfect and pure God of glory.

When you add this all together, it amounts to a terrifying reality. How can we ever hope to measure up to such a high standard? And yet, for those who know Christ Jesus by faith, the law no longer condemns us. The Son of God fulfilled God’s law Himself so that His people no longer have to face His wrath. We have escaped God’s just penalty on our sins through Jesus’ death on the cross and resurrection from the dead. Now the law does not remain outside of us; it is written upon our hearts. Now the Spirit of God who wrote it there goes to work to transform us so that we gladly accept its duties and obligations. In Christ we are not only saved from the penalty for not keeping the law; we also have the resources to keep the law as never before.

Imagine a thief who walks into a church on Sunday, sees a list of the Ten Commandments, and trembles in fear at the words “You shall not steal” (Exodus 20:15). He or she repents of that sin and receives the offer of new life in Christ. From then on, when they read that command, it means something different. The prohibition, “You must not steal,” has become a promise: “You will not steal.”

This is the case for everyone who calls on Jesus as Lord. What sins are you particularly struggling against or giving in to? By the Spirit, you have all the resources to obey your Father, looking to the law neither as a ladder to heaven nor as a source of condemnation but as a guide to life. Armed with this hope, you can battle against your sin with the confidence that comes from Christ’s great victory.


Romans 8:1-6

Topics: Holy Spirit Law Obeying God

Devotional material is taken from the Truth For Life daily devotional by Alistair Begg, 


Kids4Truth Clubs Daily Devotional – God Comforts the Fearful

“What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee.” (Psalm 56:3)

Like many people, Maggie was afraid of the dark. She was afraid of the scary things she couldn’t see in the dark. Maggie shared a bedroom with her sister Kathi, and she made Kathi promise not to go to sleep until after she had fallen asleep so that Kathi could protect her from all of the “scary things” in the room.

For the times that Maggie’s fears were very strong, her mother told her to quote Bible verses and pray. Maggie’s mom said that the Lord promised in His Word that He would calm all of Maggie’s fears. Psalms 56:3 says, “What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee.” Maggie’s mom explained that God did not want her to be afraid; instead He wanted her to trust Him with all her fears. Maggie followed her mom’s advice and began to see how the Lord was more powerful than anything real or imagined. As she quoted verses, she was reminded of God’s control over everything. As a result, she started being less and less afraid of the dark.

The Lord promises us in His Word that He will comfort us when we are afraid. Isaiah 41:10 says, “Fear thou not, for I am with thee: be not dismayed for I am thy God.” Whether it is something small, like being afraid of the dark, or something large, the Lord asks us to trust Him to comfort us in the midst of our fears.

God’s Word is able to comfort His children when they are afraid.

My Response:
» Do I ask for God’s comfort when I am afraid? Do I trust Him to be with me even during painful or scary times?

Denison Forum – A high-tech show and a brewing Temple Mount crisis

 “The last five hundred years have witnessed a breathtaking series of revolutions. The earth has been united into a single ecological and historical sphere. The economy has grown exponentially, and humankind today enjoys the kind of wealth that used to be the stuff of fairy tales. Science and the Industrial Revolution have given humankind superhuman powers and practically limitless energy. The social order has been completely transformed, as have politics, daily life and human psychology.”

So writes Yuval Noah Harari in his bestseller, Sapiens. To illustrate his point, the 2023 Consumer Electronics Show (CES), the world’s largest technology conference, begins tomorrow in Las Vegas.

Among the many innovations on display, we will see a smart refrigerator with a touchscreen display where you can control home devices, watch videos, and make shopping lists for Amazon delivery. Mops that wash themselves, window-cleaning robots, and robots that climb stairs are expected. As are electric cars with multiple touch screens and built-in video gaming.

Temple Mount visit called an “unprecedented provocation”

From new technology to the latest in a very old conflict: Israeli National Security Minister Itamar Ben Gvir visited the Temple Mount in Jerusalem on Tuesday.

Ben Gvir has long challenged the status quo by which Muslims are allowed to visit the site and pray with few restrictions while Jews can visit only during limited time slots and are not allowed to pray there. As a result, the Jerusalem Post reports that the Palestinian Authority’s Foreign Ministry condemned the visit as an “unprecedented provocation.”

Jordan likewise denounced Ben Gvir “in the severest terms [for] the storming of the Al Aqsa Mosque and violation of its sanctity.” Egypt, the United Arab Emirates, and Saudi Arabia all criticized the visit as well. Even newly reelected Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has warned in the past that “Jewish prayer at the Temple Mount, though it sounds like a reasonable thing, I know it would have ignited the Middle East.”

And so, in the view of skeptics, we have another example of the danger posed to our advanced secular society by antiquated religion. But is the world really this simple?

“Human life has absolutely no meaning”

Let’s return to Harari’s analysis of our cultural moment. After describing the remarkable innovations that have changed our lives, he asks: “But are we happier? Did the wealth humankind accumulated over the last five centuries translate into a new-found contentment?”

His short answer is no.

He explains why: “Happiness is not the surplus of pleasant over unpleasant moments. Rather, happiness consists in seeing one’s life in its entirety as meaningful and worthwhile. . . . A meaningful life can be extremely satisfying even in the midst of hardship, whereas a meaningless life is a terrible ordeal no matter how comfortable it is.”

Here’s the problem, in his atheistic and secularist view: “As far as we can tell, from a purely scientific viewpoint, human life has absolutely no meaning. Humans are the outcome of blind evolutionary processes that operate without goal or purpose. Our actions are not part of some divine cosmic plan . . . Hence, any meaning that people ascribe to their lives is just a delusion” (his emphasis).

What is the color of a C scale?

Harari, brilliant as he is, makes a basic logical error known as a “category mistake.” We make this mistake when we ask how much the number three weighs or the color of a C scale. Harari does the same when he assumes that a “purely scientific viewpoint” is the only viewpoint from which to assess the meaning of our lives.

Of course we cannot determine the meaning of life through scientific means. How would a chemist measure the strength of his marriage in a lab? How would a physicist evaluate her friendships through mathematical formulas?

Secularists make a similar mistake known as an “association fallacy” when they point to the acts of a single person or religion as typifying all religion. Having led more than thirty study tours to Israel, I can testify that Itamar Ben Gvir categorically does not represent all Israelis, nor are his views regarding the Temple Mount the consensus among Jews. Nor are Jewish beliefs on any subject necessarily typical of the beliefs of Christians, Muslims, and so on.

The most logical way to discover the design of an object is to consult its designer. Similarly, the best way to find the purpose of your life is to consult the One who created you.

“The greatest discovery you will ever make”

Let’s not make a category mistake with our souls this year. No matter how advanced our technology becomes, Harari is right: we will never find lasting happiness through temporal comfort and convenience. And let’s avoid an association fallacy that confuses formal religion with a personal relationship with our Maker.

Jesus taught us: “Abide in me, and I in you. . . . Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing” (John 15:4–5). So let’s “abide” in Christ by beginning each day with him in prayer, Bible study, and worship, then walk through the day with him in prayer and obedience. And let’s measure success by whether or not we are bearing “much fruit” for Christ.

Scripture warns us, “Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire” (Matthew 3:10). So ask yourself: Will this attitude, statement, or action glorify God? Will this decision bring honor to his name? Will he be pleased with this day when it is done?

Billy Graham observed, “This is the greatest discovery you will ever make: You were created to know God and to be his friend forever.”

Will you be God’s friend today?

Denison Forum