Advent 2017 - Day 12
Prophecy: But the Lord will remain and sit enthroned forever; He has prepared and established His throne for judgment. And He will judge the world in righteousness; He will execute judgment for the nations with fairness (equity). The Lord also will be a refuge and a stronghold for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble; (Psalm 9:7-9, AMP)
Fulfillment: Therefore God overlooked and disregarded the former ages of ignorance; but now He commands all people everywhere to repent [that is, to change their old way of thinking, to regret their past sins, and to seek God’s purpose for their lives], because He has set a day when He will judge the inhabited world in righteousness by a Man whom He has appointed and destined for that task, and He has provided credible proof to everyone by raising Him from the dead.” (Acts 17:30-31, AMP)
Advent 2017 - Day 11
Prophecy: “Then He shall be a sanctuary [a sacred, indestructible shelter for those who fear and trust Him]; But to both the houses of Israel [both the northern and southern kingdoms—Israel and Judah, He will be] a stone on which to stumble and a rock on which to trip, a trap and a snare for the inhabitants of Jerusalem.” (Isaiah 8:14, AMP)
Fulfillment: This precious value, then, is for you who believe [in Him as God’s only Son—the Source of salvation]; but for those who disbelieve, “The [very] stone which the builders rejected has become the chief Cornerstone,” and, “A stone of stumbling and a rock of offense”; for they stumble because they disobey the word [of God], and to this they [who reject Him as Savior] were also appointed. (1 Peter 2:7-8, AMP)
The Bible passage for meditation, prayer, and reflection for the week of December 10-16, 2017, is Deuteronomy 26:1-4. Deuteronomy is the last of the books of Moses. It is the final instructions for the Israelites before the enter the Promised Land, without Moses to lead them.
“Then it shall be, when you enter the land which the Lord your God gives you as an inheritance, and you take possession of it and live in it, that you shall take some of the first of all the produce of the ground which you harvest from the land that the Lord your God gives you, and you shall put it in a basket and go to the place where the Lord your God chooses to establish His Name (Presence). You shall go to the priest who is in office at that time and say to him, ‘I declare this day to the Lord my God that I have entered the land which the Lord swore to our fathers to give us.’ Then the priest will take the basket from you and place it before the altar of the Lord your God. (Deuteronomy 26:1-4, AMP)
In reading many of the Laws of Moses, we often wonder how these books and instructions are applicable to our lives today. While we are no longer required to follow many of the laws laid out by Moses for the Israelites, by reading the laws, we begin to understand the dedication and devotion we should have towards worshipping the Lord. As you meditation on, pray over, and reflect upon the verses for this week, ask yourself when you last gave thanks and praise - sincere and honest - for what the Lord has given you? All we have comes from the Lord. Show Him how thankful you are! Now!
December 14, 2017: Daily Bible Reading Commentary for Song of Solomon 3-4
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Commentary: By describing a girl missing her beloved, and the joy at finding him, we are reminded that we can always turn to the Lord, letting Him take your problems and grant you peace. The love expressed by Solomon for his bride pales in comparison to the love the Lord has for each of us.
Focus Verses: 3:1-4 A relationship, any relationship - even one with the Lord, takes work! It must actively be south after! Do you seek after the Lord?
December 13, 2017: Daily Bible Reading Commentary for Psalm 143-145
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Commentary: David is the author of all of today’s psalms. Psalm 143 is a heart wrenching please from David. The remaining two psalms both praise the Lord.
Focus Verses: 144:1-2 What all has the Lord done for you? Have you stopped to thank Him?
Updated: Monday, December 11, 2017 10:09 am EST
Juan Edward Castillo was scheduled to be executed at 6 pm CST, on Thursday, December 14, 2017, at the Walls Unit of the Huntsville State Penitentiary in Huntsville, Texas. Thirty-six-year-old Juan is convicted of the murder of 19-year-old Tommy Garcia, Jr., on December 3, 2003, in San Antonio, Texas. Juan has spent the last 12 years of his life on Texas’ death row.
The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals has stayed the execution of Jua in order to allow time for a lower court to investigate claims of false testimony. A witness at Juan's trial is now claiming that his testimony was false in an attempt to "help himself." There were also other witnesses at the trial whose testimony helped convict Juan.
Juan had previously worked as a cook and a laborer. He was previously convicted of deadly conduct with a firearm. During the trial, witnesses also testified that Juan was a violent man, threatening and beating the mother of his child. Additionally, he had previously shot a man during a road rage incident, boasted about similar crimes, and bragged about committing home invasions and robberies.
In December 2003, Juan Castillo was dating Debra Espinosa. Late on December 2, and during the early morning hours of December 3, 2003, the couple was with Francisco Gonzales, a friend of Castillo, and Gonzales’ girlfriend Teresa Quintero. The four of them created a plan to rob Tommy Garcia, Jr., with whom Espinosa had previously been intimate.
Espinosa was to take Tommy to secluded spot in a residential neighborhood in San Antonio, Texas. Castillo and Gonzales, in masks and armed with guns, would storm the car and rob Tommy. Espinosa would play along, as if she were a victim too. Quintero would serve as the get away driver from Castillo and Gonzales. During the ensuing robbery, Tommy was shot and killed by Castillo, according to the others.
Gonzales was arrested by the police as he fled from the scene, with Espinosa arrested a short time later. Both agreed to testify against Castillo in exchange for a reduced charge and a sentence of forty years in prison. Gonzales and Espinosa testified that Castillo took the lead in planning the robbery. They also testified that he was the person who shot and killed Tommy.
Only through a relationship with Jesus Christ can anyone hope to separate themselves from the power of sin in this world. Through Him, all things are made new. For a complete listing of readings, please download our Bible Study.