OK, here's the plan (if God is willing):

1) Every day will be a new devotional. I have enough devotionals for every day for three years

2) Also as I can, I'll be posting on my new political blog (see bottom of page).

Some other housecleaning:

A) If you'd like to just get new postings sent to your email, just submit your address in the box on the left just below. There's just one possible downside, though. Occasionally I'll add a music video at the end that's relevant to the devotional, and you won't get them in the email sent to you. If I add a video though, I'll make sure to mention in the posting, so you'll know to come to the site to see it if you'd like.

B) I actually finished writing new blog posting for the TAWG at the end of 2016. So what I'm doing now is at the beginning of every month, I'll move the earliest month from 3 years ago ahead so that a "new" posting appears every day. That's why you won't find any postings for January 2014, for example.

C) When I started this Blog, I was using the 1984 edition of the NIV, and that’s what I linked to on the Biblegateway site. However, in 2011 Zondervan updated its edition and thus reworded a lot of the NIV translation. Therefore, all the links which went to the 1984 edition now redirect to the 2011 edition, which often has slightly different wording. Thus, part of my editing process has been to update my Scripture quotes in my postings. But I might have missed some, in which case you might see my quote in the posting as a little different from what comes up when you click on my citation link, since that redirects to the 2011 edition on the Biblegateway site. It's a good thing that we realize that the work of translation never ends, but it can be a kind of a pain on a site like this. If you see any difference in verbiage between my quote and what shows up as a link on the Biblegateway site, or if you hover over a link and it has "NIV1984" at the end of it, please notify me and I'll correct it.

D) I can't believe I have to say this, but here goes. At the end of every posting is a suggested short prayer that has to do with what we discussed. This is actually what I've prayed when I finished writing it. In no way am I asking you to pray the exact verbiage of my suggested prayer. It's just a springboard for your own prayer, nothing more. Quite frankly, I've never been a fan of praying rote prayers written by someone else. As with everything else I do here, to the degree it helps, great; to the degree it doesn't, chunk it.

As always, thank you so much for reading, even if it's to read one post. God bless.

[Oct 23]--Feeding the 5,000

John 6:1-15

            If you, like me, were raised with any connection with the Bible growing up, then this story is probably familiar to you. I remember hearing about it Sunday School and seeing it in a Picture Bible. It’s definitely one of the more famous stories about Jesus, and it’s easy to see why. Here are a few things to note:

1) This is the only miracle (outside the Resurrection) which is recorded in all four Gospels. Apparently the writers considered it pretty important, since John usually records material which is unique to himself.

2) According to Michael Card, the earliest recorded Christian artwork represented this story in drawings. Not the crucifixion: That would come later as generations could look at the Passion with some detachment. No, the earliest artwork which we have preserved is that which depicts Jesus feeding the 5,000. They felt that the Cross was too momentous to adequately capture in human art, so they took this miracle as symbolic of what he did for us on Calvary. His feeding of the crowd was a beautiful picture of him giving of himself to “feed” the world.

3) Of course, we say “the 5,000,” but it was probably more than double that. As commonly done in that time, John didn’t count the women and children in this crowd. Once you factor those in, this becomes even more amazing.

4) The Bible is very realistic when it comes to human nature. The crowd came out, not to gain spiritual direction but to see more miracles. They'd heard about his healings, so they wanted to see more of it, like people going the circus to be thrilled and entertained. Nevertheless, Jesus condescended to their needs and provided for them in the most compassionate way.

            Then after he fed them, what was their reaction? Believe in him, or at least open their hearts to the possibilities? No. They wanted to seize him and force him to use his miraculous powers to become king and overthrow the hated Romans. In case you haven’t figured it out yet, Jesus refuses to be used for earthly political purposes. He did so back then, and he does today. He'll return to be crowned King, but it's going to be on his terms, not ours. He's not the property of any political party or politician. So let’s be careful of that, shall we?

5) And of course there’s the obvious application: He's perfectly able and willing to take care of my needs. I can trust him. If I do what he tells me to do, I can let him worry about my physical and spiritual needs. He who fed millions in the wilderness for forty years on manna, who fed Elijah via ravens, and who fed over 10,000 with a boy’s sack lunch can deal with my problems. Right?

Lord Jesus, please help me to trust you. If I ever have tried to use your name for my own purposes, please forgive me.

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