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Daily Devotionals
by Peter Kennedy
Series: Devotions In 2 Timothy
Devotional - It's Friday, But Sunday Is A Comin'!
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Thursday Mar 29, 2018
Devotional - It's Friday, But Sunday Is A Comin'!

“Carrying his own cross, he went out to the place of the Skull (which in Aramaic is called Golgotha). There they crucified him, and with him two others—one on each side and Jesus in the middle. – John 19:17-19

 

S.M. Lockridge was the Pastor of Calvary Baptist Church, a prominent African-American congregation located in San Diego, California, from 1953 to 1993. 

One of his most memorable sermons is entitled: “It’s Friday, but Sunday’s a Comin’!” Here it is reproduced in its entirety:

“It’s Friday, Jesus is praying, Peter’s a sleeping, Judas is betraying, But Sunday’s comin’. It’s Friday, Pilate’s struggling, the council is conspiring, the crowd is vilifying, They don’t even know, That Sunday’s comin’.

It’s Friday, The disciples are running, like sheep without a shepherd, Mary’s crying, Peter is denying, But they don’t know, that Sunday’s a comin’.

It’s Friday, The Romans beat my Jesus, they robe Him in scarlet, they crown Him with thorns, but they don’t know, that Sunday’s comin’.

It’s Friday, See Jesus walking to Calvary, His blood dripping, His body stumbling, and His spirit’s burdened, But you see, it’s only Friday, Sunday’s comin’.

It’s Friday, The world’s winning, people are sinning, and evil’s grinning,

It’s Friday, The soldiers nail my Savior’s hands, to the cross, they nail my Savior’s feet, to the cross, and then they raise Him up, next to criminals,

It’s Friday, But let me tell you something, Sunday’s comin’.

It’s Friday, The disciples are questioning, what has happened to their King? And the Pharisees are celebrating, that their scheming, has been achieved, but they don’t know, it’s only Friday, Sunday’s comin’.

It’s Friday, He’s hanging on the cross, feeling forsaken by His father, left alone and dying, can nobody save Him? Oaaaah, it’s Friday, but Sunday’s comin’.

It’s Friday, The earth trembles, the sky grows dark, my King yields His spirit,

It’s Friday, Hope is lost, death has won, sin has conquered, and Satan’s just a laughing, It’s Friday, Jesus is buried, a soldier stands guard, and a rock is rolled into place, But it’s Friday, it is only Friday, Sunday is a comin’!”

 

The darkest moment in the history of the world was the death of Jesus. But Sunday was a coming! Today in prayer, rejoice that Jesus died for the sins of all who received Him.

 

“The cross is proof of both the immense love of God and the profound wickedness of sin.” - John MacArthur

 

God’s Word: “The soldiers therefore came and broke the legs of the first man who had been crucified with Jesus, and then those of the other. But when they came to Jesus and found that he was already dead, they did not break his legs. – John 19:32-33

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2018, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTION FOR GOOD FRIDAY

Devotional - Gentle Instruction
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Thursday Mar 15, 2018
Devotional - Gentle Instruction

“Those who oppose him he must gently instruct, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth” – 2 Timothy 2:25

 

In October 2017, the annual Venice Marathon took place. Leading the pack half way through the race were seven East African Runners. They were following a lead motorcycle when the motorcycle veered off the course at the 25-kilometer mark.

The true direction of the course was not marked.

Following the motorcycle, the Kenyan favorites found themselves a few hundred meters off the course before race officials redirected them. It is estimated that the mistake cost each of the runners two minutes.

But it was enough time that allowed Italian Eyob Faniel, who runs for the Venice Marathon Club, to make up his one-minute gap on the leaders and win the race in 2:12:16. He became the first Italian to win the race in 22 years.

 

All of us can get off course. The Lord desires us to give gentle instruction to bring about desired change and glory to Jesus. Today in prayer, praise the Lord for the gentle instruction you have had in your life and seek to gently instruct others.

 

“The gentleness of Christ is the comeliest ornament that a Christian can wear.” – William D. Arnot

 

God’s Word: “Brothers, if someone is caught in a sin, you who are spiritual should restore him gently. But watch yourself, or you also may be tempted.” – Galatians 6:1

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2018, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN 2 TIMOTHY                     †

Devotional - Avoid Foolish Arguments
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Wednesday Mar 14, 2018
Devotional - Avoid Foolish Arguments

“Don't have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments, because you know they produce quarrels.” – 2 Timothy 2:23

 

Author Jeremy Lott writes in “When Churches Split” his experience as a teenage son of a youth pastor during a church split:

“Dad was then a youth pastor at a church in a suburb. The experience was hellish.

Egos clashed violently. Bibles were literally thrown to the ground. Disputes over worship and finances and a stupid play rent the church in two like the temple curtain. Half the congregation walked out to start their own church.

Dad did what he could to stay out of the conflict and shield his kids, both his own children and his youth group, from the conflict. It didn’t work. We saw charges and counter charges hurled, friendships ended, faith utterly snuffed out.

It was a scarring experience and, it seemed to the 13-year-old me, utterly contrary to everything we had learned from Scripture about what Jesus would want for the church. Christians were supposed to behave in a certain way. This was not it.”

 

Avoid foolish arguments. At best they are a diversion and they could lead to divisiveness. Today in prayer, ask Jesus to give you wisdom in all things and to avoid foolish arguments.

 

“If we must disagree, let's disagree without being disagreeable.” – Lyndon Baines Johnson

 

God’s Word: “What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don't they come from your desires that battle within you?” – James 4:1

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2018, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN 2 TIMOTHY                     †

Devotional - Confessing The Name Of Jesus
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Tuesday Mar 13, 2018
Devotional - Confessing The Name Of Jesus

“Nevertheless, God's solid foundation stands firm, sealed with this inscription: ‘The Lord knows those who are his,’ and, ‘Everyone who confesses the name of the Lord must turn away from wickedness.’” – 2 Timothy 2:19

 

Deborah Antignano grew up in a Roman Catholic home, but when she began dating a Jehovah’s Witness, it led to a 15-year indoctrination into the religion.  "I was attracted to their knowledge, love and zeal for what they believed to be the Word of God,” she said. “That drew me in, how they knew the Word. I was impressed, very impressed and I wanted that. Also, there was a sense of community and love for each other."

As she studied the Bible, she realized there were inconsistencies in the Jehovah Witness teaching.

"The big one was in 1975 when they predicted that was the end. It never came to pass. I was able to see all the inconsistencies, verse-by-verse, doctrine-by-doctrine and the deity of the Lord Jesus. I could see that Jesus is God. 'I am the way, the truth and the life. No one gets to the Father except through me.' It’s not an organization. It’s not a religion. It’s not a person. It’s the Lord Jesus!"

In 2002, Deborah gave her life to Jesus and has been ministering to others through song and teaching since then.

 

Jesus desires for everyone to turn from sin and to bring Him glory. Today in prayer, praise the Lord for saving you.

 

"Repentance is not a fatal day when tears are shed, but a natal day when, as a result of tears, a new life begins." - Ilion T. Jones

 

God’s Word: “And he passed in front of Moses, proclaiming, "The LORD, the LORD, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished; he punishes the children and their children for the sin of the fathers to the third and fourth generation." – Exodus 34:6-7

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2018, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN 2 TIMOTHY                     †

Devotional - Correctly Handling The Word
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Monday Mar 12, 2018
Devotional - Correctly Handling The Word

“Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.” – 2 Timothy 2:15

 

In January 2016, the annual National Bible Bee finals were held in San Antonio, Texas. The top 70 teenage contestants were challenged to memorize 840 Bible verses in just 90 days. The grand prize was $100,000.

The winner was Caleb Hoverson from Burlington, North Dakota. The son of the Reverend Jeff Hoverson, Caleb regularly studies the Bible for 5 hours per day. He has been home schooled, along with his two sisters. “We integrated the Bible into our school work,” he said. He began competing in the National Bible Bee in 2009, and became the overall winner seven years later.

Caleb said the Bible Bee was a huge influence on his spiritual life.

“The biggest prize for me has been God’s word,” he said.

 

Each of us should strive to know Jesus better and that means knowing God’s Word. Today in prayer, thank the Lord for the Bible and spend some extra time reading God’s Word. 

 

“God did not write a book and send it by messenger to be read at a distance by unaided minds. He spoke a Book and lives in His spoken words, constantly speaking His words and causing the power of them to persist across the years.” – A.W. Tozer

 

God’s Word: “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God.” – Colossians 3:16

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2018, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN 2 TIMOTHY                     †

Devotional - When God Wants To
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Sunday Mar 11, 2018
Devotional - When God Wants To

“Therefore I endure everything for the sake of the elect, that they too may obtain the salvation that is in Christ Jesus, with eternal glory.” – 2 Timothy 2:10

 

In his book, “Spiritual Leadership,” Oswald J. Sander's credits an "Author Unknown" with the poem “When God Wants To Drill A Man,” a poem about hardship:

When God wants to drill a man And thrill a man And skill a man,

When God wants to mold a man To play the noblest part;

When He yearns with all His heart To create so great and bold a man

That all the world shall be amazed, Watch His methods, watch His ways!

How He ruthlessly perfects Whom He royally elects!

How He hammers him and hurts him,

And with mighty blows converts him Into trial shapes of clay which Only God understands;

While his tortured heart is crying And he lifts beseeching hands!

How He bends but never breaks

When his good He undertakes;

How He uses whom He chooses

And with every purpose fuses him;

By every act induces him To try His splendour out--

God knows what He's about!”

 

In this life, we will face hardship and we need to endure. Today in prayer, look to Jesus and do not be discouraged because He will help you win the race.

 

“Even when the gospel demands much, even when it leads to an effort which seems to be beyond human ability and to a future which seems dark with every kind of threat, remember that it is good news, and remember that the world is waiting for it.” – William Barclay

 

God’s Word: “Now I rejoice in what was suffered for you, and I fill up in my flesh what is still lacking in regard to Christ's afflictions, for the sake of his body, which is the church.” – Colossians 1:24

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2018, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN 2 TIMOTHY                     †

Devotional - The Unchained Book
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Thursday Mar 8, 2018
Devotional - The Unchained Book

“for which I am suffering even to the point of being chained like a criminal. But God's word is not chained.” – 2 Timothy 2:9

 

In 1979 there were an estimated 500 Christians from a Muslim background in Iran.

In 2012, Mohammad-Hadi Bordhar was arrested because he wanted to “evangelize by handing out 12,000 pocket bibles”. He was accused of “crimes against state security”.

After being baptized, Bordhar had created a “domestic church” in his home in Rasht in northern Iran. Iranian police found books, CDs and more than 6,000 Bibles at his property. He was later sentenced to 10 years in prison.

But other ministries have had success in distributing bibles in Iran.

Senior Iranian church leaders with a vision to serve the growing church in Iran founded Elam Ministries in 1990. 

Elam completed translation of the New Testament into modern Persian in 2003. Since then they have published more than 1.7 million copies. People in nearly 100 cities in the region have received copies of the New Testament.

Today, there are at least 600 churches and 300,000–370,000 Christians in Iran.

 

The Word of God does not have any barriers and can reach any heart at any time. Today in prayer, praise Jesus for His gift of the written Word, the Bible.

 

"The Scriptures and the words of Jesus possess a terrible power in themselves and a wonderful sweetness. Straightway a flame was kindled in my soul, and a love of the prophets and of those men who were friends of Christ possessed me." - Justin Martyr

 

God’s Word: “For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” – Hebrews 4:12

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2018, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN 2 TIMOTHY                     †

Devotional - Following Orders
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Wednesday Mar 7, 2018
Devotional - Following Orders

“No one serving as a soldier gets involved in civilian affairs--he wants to please his commanding officer.” – 2 Timothy 2:4

 

In 1808, Adoniram Judson was at Andover Theological Seminary when he “made a solemn dedication of himself to God”. During his final year at school, Adoniram heard God’s calling to be a missionary.

After he graduated from seminary, Adoniram received an invitation from a fashionable church in Boston to become its assistant pastor. Everyone congratulated him. His mother and sister rejoiced that he could live at home with them and do his life work, but he shook his head. “My work is not here,” he said. “God is calling me beyond the seas. To stay here, even to serve God in His ministry, I feel would be only partial obedience, and I could not be happy in that.” Although it caused him a great struggle, the 25-year old Adoniram left his mother and sister to follow the heavenly call.

The Lord rewarded Adoniram’s obedience.  In Burma, he translated the Bible into Burmese language, planted 100 churches, and led more than 8,000 people to Jesus Christ.

 

Whatever the Lord calls you to do, follow Him. Today in prayer, praise Jesus that He has called you to follow Him. Be obedient to follow the Lord in all that you do. 

 

“As we begin to focus upon God, the things of the Spirit will take shape before our inner eyes.” – A. W. Tozer

 

God’s Word: “Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” – Hebrews 12:2

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2018, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN 2 TIMOTHY                     †

Devotional - Endure Hardship
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Tuesday Mar 6, 2018
Devotional - Endure Hardship

“Endure hardship with us like a good soldier of Christ Jesus.” – 2 Timothy 2:3

 

In 1967 Chaplain James D. Johnson chose to accompany his men, unarmed, on their daily combat operations in Vietnam. It was a decision made against the recommendations of his superiors.

During what would be the final days for some, he offered his ministry not from a pulpit but on the battlefields—in hot landing zones and rice paddies, in hospitals, aboard ship, and knee-deep in mud. He even found time for baptisms in the muddy Mekong River.

"You've never really lived until you've almost died," wrote Chaplain Johnson, one of the youngest army chaplains at the time.

For eight and one-half months, Chaplain Johnson served in the field with a small unit numbering 350 men. The physical price can be counted with numbers—ninety-six killed and over nine hundred wounded. There was also a spiritual and psychological price. “It placed my soul in the lost and found department for awhile,” Chaplain Johnson wrote.

 

Like a good soldier of Christ, we need to endure all that comes before us. Today in prayer, thank Jesus for any hardship you face, knowing that He will give you strength to stand.

 

“We are always in the forge, or on the anvil; by trials God is shaping us for higher things.” - Henry Ward Beecher

 

God’s Word: “Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as sons. For what son is not disciplined by his father?” – Hebrews 12:7

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2018, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN 2 TIMOTHY                     †

Devotional - Sound Doctrine
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Monday Mar 5, 2018
Devotional - Sound Doctrine

“What you heard from me, keep as the pattern of sound teaching, with faith and love in Christ Jesus.” – 2 Timothy 1:13

 

In a sermon entitled “The Importance of Sound Doctrine,” Pastor Eddie Snipes said the following:

“What makes us feel good is not the measure of truth. Feelings sway with the wind of circumstances but the truth of God’s word stands as a solid rock that does not change whether times are good or times are bad. Those who are founded upon the rock will never be moved even if the world around them falls apart. As biblical teaching is pushed aside, people are no longer standing strong in the Lord. In fact, very few have any concept of an immovable truth or even what spiritual maturity is all about. Unless a preacher or teacher stirs the hearts of believers with the truth, very few will ever go beyond their Sunday morning dose of emotional excitement. There is so much more to Christianity than getting an emotional charge and claiming self-centered requests from the Lord. Without understanding truth – all of the truth, Christians will be dwarfed in their growth and never experience the true things of God.”

 

Each of us needs to follow and give sound Biblical teaching. Today in prayer, praise the Lord that sound teaching is found in the Bible.

 

“A teacher must be one who knows the lesson or truth or art to be taught.” - John Milton Gregory

 

God’s Word: “He must hold firmly to the trustworthy message as it has been taught, so that he can encourage others by sound doctrine and refute those who oppose it.” – Titus 1:9

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2018, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN 2 TIMOTHY                     †

Devotional - Do Not Be Ashamed
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Sunday Mar 4, 2018
Devotional - Do Not Be Ashamed

“So do not be ashamed to testify about our Lord, or ashamed of me his prisoner. But join with me in suffering for the gospel, by the power of God” – 2 Timothy 1:8

 

Pastor and missionary Timothy Conkling visited hundreds of Chinese house churches for his seminary dissertation.

Since the late 1980s, Tim has made more than 100 trips to China, where he’s developed relationships with house church leaders and watched Christianity flourish from a grassroots level.

Drawing from a large variety of examples, he points out in his paper that the church acts “cooperative resistance” in dealing with the government. First, churches try working with the government to solve disputes, such as writing letters that call officials to follow the rule of law. When that doesn’t work, they reach out to international players such as ChinaAid or U.S. senators to plead their case. If persecution still continues, church leaders accept it as a testing of their faith, a badge of honor for Christians. In one story, Pastor Tim describes meeting an evangelist who hung her head saying, “I am so ashamed I never had the privilege of suffering for my Lord.”

 

No matter what you may face in this life, do not be ashamed of the Gospel. It is the Good News Jesus wants everyone to accept. Today in prayer, thank the Lord that He was not ashamed of you to die for your sin. Ask the Lord for strength that you may bring Him honor in all that you do.

 

“Once inside eternity, we are going to be very embarrassed at the smallness of our faith.” – Leonard Ravenhill

 

God’s Word:  “They overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death.” – Revelation 12:11

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2018, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN 2 TIMOTHY                     †

Devotional - Have Self-Discipline
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Thursday Mar 1, 2018
Devotional - Have Self-Discipline

“For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline.” – 2 Timothy 1:7

 

Allyson Felix was born and raised in California, the daughter of an ordained minister and professor of New Testament at The Master’s Seminary in Santa Clarita, California.  

She has won six gold medals at the 2012 and 2016 Olympics.

Allyson described her running ability as a gift from God, "For me, my faith is the reason I run. I definitely feel I have this amazing gift that God has blessed me with, and it's all about using it to the best of my ability."

As a high school student, Allyson would race against the boys and she spent time in the weight room. She began watching her nutrition and she saw an immediate improvement in her running.

Her training routine evolved. Her power workouts and her self-discipline have set the standard for runners.

But Allyson’s discipline is not just in running.

“I pray a lot,” she said. “I always make time to spend in the Word, just talking to God. My speed is a gift from God, and I run for his glory. Whatever I do, it all comes from him.”

 

We bring glory to the Lord when we exhibit self-discipline. Today in prayer, thank Jesus for the gifts He has given you and seek to be self-disciplined in all that you do.

 

“The good Lord gave you a body that can stand most anything. It's your mind you have to convince.” - Vince Lombardi

 

God’s Word: “The proverbs of Solomon son of David, king of Israel: for attaining wisdom and discipline; for understanding words of insight; for acquiring a disciplined and prudent life, doing what is right and just and fair” – Proverbs 1:1-3

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2018, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN 2 TIMOTHY                     

Devotional - Remember To Pray
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Wednesday Feb 28, 2018
Devotional - Remember To Pray

“I thank God, whom I serve, as my forefathers did, with a clear conscience, as night and day I constantly remember you in my prayers.” – 2 Timothy 1:3

 

Grayson Clamp was born deaf. Unlike most children who are candidates for a cochlear implant, Grayson was born without cochlear nerves, which qualified him for an auditory brainstem implant.

In June 2013, three year Grayson became the first child to undergo the operation in a North Carolina hospital.

When it came time to see if the operation was a success, Grayson’s father, Len Clamp, had the honor of saying the first words the boy would hear:

“Daddy loves you,” Len said sweetly as the toddler pointed and gasped in awe.

“I’ve never seen a look like that today,” said Len after the successful test.

“He looked deep into my eyes and he was hearing my voice for the first time. It was phenomenal to see him take that sound in and try to figure out ‘What in the world is this, I’ve never had this sensation before.’”

 

Prayer is not just talking to God, it is also hearing our Heavenly Father’s voice. Today in prayer, thank Christ for the extraordinary privilege to come to Him at anytime in prayer.

 

"I am so busy now that if I did not spend three hours each day in prayer, I could not get through the day." - Martin Luther

 

God’s Word: “With this in mind, we constantly pray for you, that our God may count you worthy of his calling, and that by his power he may fulfill every good purpose of yours and every act prompted by your faith.” – 2 Thessalonians 1:11

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2018, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN 2 TIMOTHY                     †

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