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Daily Devotionals
by Peter Kennedy
Series: Devotions In John
Devotional - Following Christ To The End
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Monday May 30, 2016
Devotional - Following Christ To The End

“I tell you the truth, when you were younger you dressed yourself and went where you wanted; but when you are old you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will dress you and lead you where you do not want to go.” – John 21:18

 

In September 1947, evangelist Billy Graham preached at his first “Crusade” in the Civic Auditorium in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He was 29 years old. During the next 58 years, he had boundless energy and he conducted more than 400 crusades in 185 countries and territories on six continents.

It is estimated that more than 3.2 million people have responded to the invitation at Billy Graham Crusades to "accept Jesus Christ as their personal savior". As of 2008, Dr. Graham's estimated lifetime audience, including radio and television broadcasts, topped 2.2 billion.

In 2005, Dr. Graham preached at his last crusade. For more than a decade now he has battled Parkinson’s disease, the loss of hearing and the loss of his eyesight. Though his mind is still sharp, he has been wheelchair bound since 2013.

In 2014, before Dr. Graham’s 96th birthday, his son Franklin said: “My father can no longer take walks or kneel in the woods to pray. His eyesight has dimmed and his conversations are brief. But I can tell you that he kneels in spirit to the Lord as he prays for lost souls and looks forward to eternal fellowship with His Savior in Heaven someday.”

 

Christ wants us to follow Him our entire lives. Today in prayer, praise the Lord that He has a plan for you and resolve to follow Him your entire life.  

 

“If, then, you are looking for the way by which you should go, take Christ, because He Himself is the way.” – Thomas Aquinas

 

God’s Word: “Even to your old age and gray hairs, I am he, I am he who will sustain you. I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you.” – Isaiah 46:4

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2016, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE GOSPEL OF JOHN

Devotional - Beyond The Sunset
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Sunday May 29, 2016
Devotional - Beyond The Sunset

“Then Jesus told him, ‘Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.’” – John 20:29

 

Virgil Brock composed the hymn “Beyond the Sunset.” He tells the story behind the song:

“This song was born during a conversation at the dinner table, one evening in 1936, after watching a very unusual sunset at Winona Lake Indiana, with a blind guest—my cousin Horace Burr—and his wife Grace. A large area of the water appeared ablaze with the glory of God, yet there were threatening storm clouds gathering overhead. Returning to our home, we went to the dinner table still talking about the impressive spectacle we had witnessed. Our blind guest excitedly remarked the he had never seen a more beautiful sunset.

“People are always amazed when you talk about seeing,” I told him, “I can see,” Horace replied. “I see through other peoples’ eyes, and think I often see more; I see beyond the sunset.”

The phrase “beyond the sunset” and the striking inflection of his voice struck me so forcibly, I began singing the first few measures.

 

Faith is seeing beyond our own eyesight. Today in prayer, praise the Lord that He is a Rewarder to all who have faith in Him.

 

“Faith is an active creative force.” – J.H. Oldham

 

God’s Word: “‘If you can?’ said Jesus. ‘Everything is possible for him who believes.’” – Mark 9:23

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2016, Devotional E-Mail    

DEVOTIONS IN THE GOSPEL OF JOHN

Devotional - Follow The Truth
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Thursday May 26, 2016
Devotional - Follow The Truth

“‘You are a king, then!’ said Pilate. Jesus answered, ‘You are right in saying I am a king. In fact, for this reason I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me.’” – John 18:37

 

The main runway at Cork Airport in Ireland has, since 1961, been designated runway 17/35 — depending on which direction an aircraft approaches or departs. This means that

the runway was aligned to 170-degree approach from the north and 350-degree approach from the south. But through the years, magnetic north had drifted 10 degrees, so now the approach is 160 degrees from the north and 340 degrees from the south.

So in April 2016, Cork Airport re-designated the runway from 17/35 to 16/34 to line up with true magnetic north.

A spokesman for the Irish Aviation Authority said the rate of change of the magnetic variation is not linear or constant, but, for Ireland, is of the order of magnitude of one degree every five years.

“Assuming this remains constant, every runway will need to change its designation every 50 years,” he said. “There are no other changes planned at present for other Irish airports, but the magnetic variation is continuously monitored.”

 

Jesus Christ does not shift and He does not change. He is the Truth and He is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow. Today in prayer, praise the Lord that He is the Truth and in Him there is no shifting.

 

"Stand firm for Christ in your life. Nothing else will make a difference." – Charles Colson

 

God’s Word: “ For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.” – John 1:17

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2016, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE GOSPEL OF JOHN

Devotional - Pray For Others
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Wednesday May 25, 2016
Devotional - Pray For Others

“My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message” – John 17:20

 

Lou Nicholes grew up on a small farm in southeastern Ohio. In July 1954, while in the United States Army and on a troop ship headed for Germany, a U.S. Navy chaplain led him to Christ. He went on to become a Christian author and missionary.

He wrote the following about his mother’s prayer life: “I cannot tell you how much I owe to the prayers of my godly mother. I believe that it was in answer to her prayers that I came to know Christ as my personal Lord and Savior while on a troop ship in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, serving in the United States Army. She knew that I was headed to the other side of the world and didn’t have a personal relationship with Christ and she was praying for me to be saved. After she died I was looking through her prayer journal and saw the names of hundreds of people she had been praying for to be saved.”

 

We need to be men and women who regularly pray intercessory prayers for the salvation of others. Today in prayer, look to the Lord and pray for those who you know who do not yet know Jesus Christ.

 

“To make intercession for men is the most powerful and practical way we can express our love for them.” – John Calvin

 

God’s Word: “But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers.” – Luke 22:32

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2016, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE GOSPEL OF JOHN

Devotional - The Peace Of God
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Tuesday May 24, 2016
Devotional - The Peace Of God

“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.” – John 16:33

 

In the summer of 1775, a group of Quakers went to a Friends Meeting in Easton Township, Saratoga County, New York.

Many of the men’s hearts were troubled. There were reports of roving Indians on the warpath.

Zebulon Hoxie, the patriarch of the Meeting, sat beside Robert Nisbet, a visiting Friend, who had walked through the forests for several days to meet with them.

Robert Nisbet was a kindly man, and he knew well the fear that lay heavily on the hearts of the Easton Friends. They had stayed in their peaceful homes even though their neighbors had all fled to the larger settlements where they hoped for safety from the Indian raids.

The visitor spoke: "The Beloved of the Lord shall dwell in safety by Him; and the Lord shall cover him all the day long." His voice faltered and then went on, calmly and tenderly: "And how shall the Beloved of the Lord be thus safely covered? Even as the psalmist says: 'He shall cover thee with His feathers, and under His wings shalt thou trust.' He continued to preach on peace in the Lord.

Suddenly, above the windowsill, appeared the tips of several moving feathers. Then an Indian chief appeared in the doorway, looking with piercing eyes at each Friend in turn to see if there was any weapon present; but the Friends were entirely unarmed. A moment later, other Indians stood beside their chief. Yet the Friends sat on, without stirring, in complete peaceful silence. At last, Zebulon Hoxie lifted his head and met the full gaze of the chief. No word was spoken, just a peaceful smile.

Minutes passed, and then the Indian's eyes slowly fell. He signaled to his followers, and each slipped silently into a nearby bench. Then began one of the strangest meetings ever held in the Society of Friends. Not a Quaker stirred, and the silent Indians sat peacefully with them. At last the Friends on the facing bench shook hands solemnly. The meeting was over, and the Friends greeted their visitors.

Then the chief spoke: "Indian come to kill white man. Indian come, see white men all sit quiet: no gun, no arrow, no knife; all quiet, all still, worshipping Great Spirit. Great Spirit is Indian, too. Then Great Spirit say to Indian: 'You must not kill these white men!'"

Then the chief took a white feather from one of his arrows and stuck it firmly over the doorway, saying, "Indians all friends when see this feather." Then he turned and, with a sign to the others, led the way into the forest while the Friends watched in silence - except for Robert Nisbet's quiet words: "He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under His wings shalt thou trust."

 

Only the Lord can give peace. Today in prayer, praise the Lord that we have peace in Him because we trust that He died for our sins.

 

“Who except God can give you peace? Has the world ever been able to satisfy the heart?” – Gerard Majella

 

God’s Word: “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” – John 14:27

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2016, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE GOSPEL OF JOHN

Devotional - The Great Vine
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Monday May 23, 2016
Devotional - The Great Vine

“I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” – John 15:5

 

In the year 1768, Lancelot 'Capability' Brown took a vine cutting taken from Valentines Mansion in Essex, England. He planted the cutting at the Hampton Court Palace. In 1887 it was already 4 feet around the base. Today, more than 240 years after its planting, it is 13 feet around the base and the longest branch is 120 feet.

Known as “The Great Vine” it is the oldest and largest grape vine in the world.

Royalty, such as Queen Victoria, have eaten the grapes, as well as soldiers blinded in the First World War.

The crop is usually harvested in September. It takes the Vine Keeper around three weeks to remove all the grapes. It annually produces more than 600 pounds of sweet black dessert grapes.

 

When we stay connected to Christ, we can continually produce fruit. Today in prayer, praise the Lord that He has chosen you to be His instrument on earth and seek to stay connected to Him and to do His will.

 

“I was but a pen in God's hand, and what praise is due to a pen?” – Richard Baxter

 

God’s Word: “You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit--fruit that will last. Then the Father will give you whatever you ask in my name.” – John 15:16

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2016, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE GOSPEL OF JOHN

Devotional - The Way
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Sunday May 22, 2016
Devotional - The Way

“Jesus answered, ‘I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.’” – John 14:6

 

One of the beautiful areas of the Grand Canyon is in southeast area. It is known as Havasu Falls. It features 5 amazing waterfalls; the highest is over 200 feet tall. But getting to this spot of paradise is not easy.

One must hike or ride horseback 10 miles from the nearest paved road through the Havasupai Indian Reservation.

Some eight miles into the hike, one will pass Havasupai Bible Church. The church is the most remote chapel in the lower 48 states and the only church inside the Grand Canyon.

The church's white cross on its steeple viewed against the red Grand Canyon rock is a landmark to the 25,000 hikers who visit the spectacular waterfalls each year; the hikers must pass by the church en route to the falls and campgrounds.

 

The only way to heaven is through Jesus Christ. We all must put our faith in Him to receive eternal life. Today in prayer, praise the Lord that He is the way for us to return to our Heavenly Father.

 

“Christ is the only way to salvation.” – Ulrich Zwingli

 

God’s Word: “I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. He will come in and go out, and find pasture.” – John 10:9

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2016, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE GOSPEL OF JOHN

Devotional - Serving Others
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Thursday May 19, 2016
Devotional - Serving Others

“Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another's feet. I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you.” – John 13:14-15

 

Albert Schweitzer was one of the most famous missionaries of the modern era. Leaving behind both an academic career (Schweizer had Phds in both theology and physics) and a musical one (Schweizer was also a concert organist) he set up a medical clinic in French Equatorial Africa. He was 85 years old when Andrew Davison of Colgate Rochester Seminary had the privilege of visiting. Davison tells how one morning, at around 11.00, he, Schweitzer and some others were walking up a hill. It was extremely hot. Suddenly the 85 year old Dr Schweitzer walked away from the group. He made his way toward an African woman struggling up the hill with a large load of wood for the cookfires. Schweitzer took the entire load of wood from the woman and carried it up the hill for her.

When Schweitzer rejoined the group one of them asked why he did things like that. With the rest of the group this person was surprised and concerned that a person of Dr Schweitzer’s age would strain themselves so. Dr Schweitzer looked at the group, then pointed to the woman and said, “No one should ever have to carry a burden like that alone.”

 

The greater things in life are serving God and serving others. Today in prayer, praise the Lord that He has called you to follow Him and to be a servant.

 

“Wash what is dirty, water what is dry, heal what is wounded. Bend what is stiff, warm what is cold, guide what goes off the road.” – Stephen Langton

 

God’s Word: “You, my brothers, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the sinful nature; rather, serve one another in love.” – Galatians 5:13

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2016, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE GOSPEL OF JOHN

Devotional - For The Glory Of God
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Wednesday May 18, 2016
Devotional - For The Glory Of God

“‘Father, glorify your name!’ Then a voice came from heaven, ‘I have glorified it, and will glorify it again.’” – John 12:28

 

Today John Newton is remembered as the author of “Amazing Grace.” But during his lifetime, he was best known for his letters to others. The following is from a letter to a fellow pastor:

“I have some idea of what a Christian ought to be; and it is, I hope, what I desire to be. A Christian should be conformable to Christ in his spirit and in his practice. That is, he should be spiritually minded, dead to the world, filled with zeal for the glory of God, the spread of the Gospel, and the good of souls. He should be humble, patient, meek, cheerful, and thankful under all events and changes. He should account it the business and honor of his life--to imitate Him who pleased not Himself, who went about doing good. The whole deportment of a Christian should show that the saving knowledge of Jesus, affords him all he could expect from it--a balm for every grief, an amends for every loss, a motive for every duty, a restraint from every evil, a pattern for everything which he is called to do or suffer, and a principle sufficient to constitute the actions of every day, even in common life--as acts of piety. He should make every event through which he passes, subservient and subordinate to his main design--the glory of Christ.”

 

It should be our goal in life to bring glory to God. Today in prayer, praise the Lord that you are His ambassador here on earth and seek to bring Him glory this day.

 

“The glory of God, and as our only means to glorify Him, the salvation of human souls, is the real business of life.” – C.S. Lewis

 

God’s Word: “Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us.” – 1 Peter 2:12

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2016, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE GOSPEL OF JOHN

Devotional - Christ's Compassion
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Tuesday May 17, 2016
Devotional - Christ's Compassion

“Jesus wept.” – John 11:35

 

Evangelist D.L. Moody told the story of his conversion: “When I was in Boston I used to attend a Sunday school class, and one day I recollect my teacher came around behind the counter of the shop I was at work in, and put his hand upon my shoulder, and talked to me about Christ and my soul. I had not felt that I had a soul till then. I said to myself, ‘This is a very strange thing. Here is a man who never saw me till lately, and he is weeping over my sins, and I never shed a tear about them.’ But I understand it now, and know what it is to have a passion for men’s souls and weep over their sins. I don’t remember what he said, but I can still feel the power of that man’s hand on my shoulder tonight.”

Edward D. Kimball was that Sunday school teacher. He remembered that day: “I don't know just what words I used, nor could Mr. Moody tell. I simply told him of Christ's love for him and the love Christ wanted in return. That was all there was of it. I think Mr. Moody said afterward that there were tears in my eyes.”

 

Loving others starts with compassion for them. Today in prayer, thank the Lord that He is our model of compassion and seek to have a tender heart toward others.

 

“You may call God love, you may call God goodness. But the best name for God is compassion.” – Meister Eckhart

 

God’s Word: “Oh, that my head were a spring of water and my eyes a fountain of tears! I would weep day and night for the slain of my people.” – Jeremiah 9:1

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2016, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE GOSPEL OF JOHN

Devotional - Losing Faith
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Monday May 16, 2016
Devotional - Losing Faith

“Jesus answered, "I did tell you, but you do not believe. The miracles I do in my Father's name speak for me” – John 10:25

 

For more than twenty years, Pastor Jim Morgan had been a church planter. Then one day in November 2012 he was reading the passage about Jesus casting a multitude of demons into a herd of swine. He wrote “it hit me (based on what I knew about the evolution of demonology in the intertestamental period)… this is ridiculous. And poof, just like that, I realized there was nothing, not one thing, left in my ‘faith folder.’”

Jim was not living an unholy lifestyle; he simply left the faith because he could not believe in Jesus’ miracles.

Jim continued to be a pastor for two more years, preaching faith in the Lord though he himself had lost his faith. He eventually moved to a sales position and he writes occasionally about his loss of faith.

 

Do not let any teaching interfere with your faith in Jesus Christ. Today in prayer, praise the Lord that He is worthy of our faith in Him.

 

“None but the Lord himself can afford us any help from the awful workings of unbelief, doubtings, carnal fears, murmurings. Thank God one day we will be done forever with ‘unbelief’” – Arthur W. Pink

 

God’s Word: “‘If you can?’ said Jesus. ‘Everything is possible for him who believes.’ Immediately the boy's father exclaimed, ‘I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!’” – Mark 9:23-24

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2016, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE GOSPEL OF JOHN

Devotional - The Good Shepherd
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Sunday May 15, 2016
Devotional - The Good Shepherd

“"I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me-- just as the Father knows me and I know the Father--and I lay down my life for the sheep.” – John 10:14-15

 

On the evening of December 17, 2015, 15-year old Zaevion Dobson was with a few friends on the porch of a house in Knoxville, Tennessee. Then just after 10 p.m., a group of men approached the gathering and began firing randomly into the crowd.

Zaevion quickly realized what was happening and jumped on top of three girls to protect them from the gunfire. He was killed immediately by one of the bullets.

Zaevion was just a sophomore in high school, but in his short life he became a Christian hero. He was a disciple of the Lord and he enjoyed attending Wednesday Night Men's Bible Study. He was also a linebacker on the high school football team.

But most importantly, he was a Christian who was not afraid to lay down his life for his friends.

One of the girls he saved was Kiara Rucker. "If it wasn't for Zaevion, if he would have just ran off the porch, we would have probably been shot," she said.

 

There is no greater love than dying for someone, and that is precisely what Jesus Christ did for you. Today in prayer, give thanks to the Lord that He voluntarily laid down His life for you.

 

“God proved His love on the cross. When Christ hung, and bled, and died, it was God saying to the world, ‘I love you.’” – Billy Graham

 

God’s Word: “Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.” – John 15:13

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2016, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE GOSPEL OF JOHN

Devotional - Doing His Work
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Thursday May 12, 2016
Devotional - Doing His Work

“As long as it is day, we must do the work of him who sent me. Night is coming, when no one can work.” – John 9:4

 

In 1809, at the age of 64-years old, Colonel Henry Rutgers could look back on a long successful career. He was a Revolutionary War hero, a successful landowner and businessman who donated land for the use of schools, churches, and charities in the New York City area.

But in December 1809, he met with other Christian men to discuss New York City’s spiritual needs. They formed the New York Bible Society (NYBS). The following year, the Lord called them to translate the Bible into Bengali by missionary to India William Carey. By 1815, the NYBS had distributed 10,000 Bibles; by 1909, 4.9 million; and by 1990, 300 million in over 400 languages.

The organization changed its name twice; first to the International Bible Society, and most recently to Biblica.

Throughout their first 200 years, Biblica ministry was interwoven with historic times and worldwide events including: providing Bibles in 65 languages to U.S. immigrants for over 135 years, placing decision pages in Scriptures for Billy Sunday’s evangelism crusades, giving Bibles to soldiers in WWI and WWII, providing more than 4 million Scriptures to people in the Soviet Union following the collapse, and ministering to more than a quarter million survivors of the 2005 Indian Ocean tsunami. This all resulted from the Lord working through people who wanted to be used by the Him.

 

Wherever the Lord is having you go, do His work with all of your heart and strength. Today in prayer, thank Christ that He loves you and He has given to you work that will bring glory to Him.

“Do you think the work of God gives to us to do is never easy! Jesus says His yoke is easy, His burden is light. People sometimes refuse to do God’s work just because it is easy. This is sometimes because they cannot believe that easy work is His work.” – George McDonald

 

God’s Word: “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men” – Colossians 3:23

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2016, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE GOSPEL OF JOHN

Devotional - Follow Him
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Wednesday May 11, 2016
Devotional - Follow Him

“To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, ‘If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples.’” – John 8:31

 

In July 2008, a Syrian truck driver who was transporting luxury cars from Turkey to Gibraltar got lost. He went on a 1,600-mile detour due to an error in his GPS. Instead of arriving at the island of Gibraltar, he ended up on the mainland of southeastern England at Gibraltar Point.

Trying to steer his 32-ton truck down a narrow lane towards the North Sea, his truck finally came to rest when it became stuck.

Mr. Bakimci still did not realize that he was lost until a local citizen explained to him that the island of Gibraltar was in fact 1,600 miles away off the Spanish coast.

Maggie Game, a spokesperson at Direct Line Insurance Group, warned: “If a satnav gives you an instruction that is likely to endanger other road users, ignore it. Motorists must realize that while they are a helpful navigation tool, they should not follow their instructions to the detriment of road safety.”

 

It is curious that some people are overly obedient to machines, but will not follow the Lord. Today in prayer, ask the Lord to give you are heart that is ready and willing to follow after Him.

 

“Nothing is really lost by a life of sacrifice; everything is lost by failure to obey God’s call.” – Henry P. Liddon

 

God’s Word: “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.” – James 1:22

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2016, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE GOSPEL OF JOHN

Devotional - Fearful Of Others
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Tuesday May 10, 2016
Devotional - Fearful Of Others

“But no one would say anything publicly about him for fear of the Jews.” – John 7:13

 

In May 2005, two Japanese soldiers, Yoshio Yamakawa age 87, and Tsuzuki Nakauchi, age 85, surrendered on the island of on Mindanao in the Philippines after hiding for 60 years.

Discovered after a chance encounter with a Filipina businesswoman who had friends in Japan, the men reportedly have documents that showed they were attached to the Japanese army's 30th Division. They had been listed among Japan's war dead.

The men had made contact with the outside world through a 93-year-old former military doctor.

"I also want to go back to Japan but we are worried about a court martial," the doctor reportedly said.

Fearing both the Filipinos and their own Japanese government, the men had dug in, ignoring pamphlet drops in 1945 telling them that the war had ended. For years they successfully eluded American troops and several search parties looking for Japanese soldiers who were stragglers on the islands.

 

As Christians, we should never be fearful of men and we are to always stand-up for the truth. Today in prayer, praise the Lord that we need not be fearful of anyone.

 

“Whenever I hear about Christ as Savior it appears that he saves us from sin – and I don’t wish to deny that – but in my experience he does more than that: he releases us from fear, and I think fear is the great killer.” – Ivor Smith-Cameron

 

God’s Word:  “The LORD is my light and my salvation-- whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life-- of whom shall I be afraid?” – Psalm 27:1

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2016, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE GOSPEL OF JOHN

Devotional - Stop Complaining
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Monday May 9, 2016
Devotional - Stop Complaining

“‘Stop grumbling among yourselves,’ Jesus answered.” – John 6:43

 

Mike Foster is a best-selling author, pastor and television commentator for FOX. For the past 15 years he has focused his work and message on reminding people that they are deeply loved and accepted by God. He leads an organization called People of the Second Chance which provides innovative strategies on failure and crisis.

Mike wrote the following about complaining:

“Lobbing hand grenades on the bride of Christ takes zero talent or effort. I also think this really ticks God off. My five-year-old child complains and whines when things aren't the way she wants them, but courageous men and women roll up their sleeves and get busy. I want to be an active participant in putting back together the broken pieces.”

 

Chronic complaining is a sin. Today in prayer, confess any sin of grumbling and complaining to the Lord.

 

“Anyone who complains or grumbles is not perfect, nor even a good Christian.” – John of the Cross

 

God’s Word: “Don't grumble against each other, brothers, or you will be judged. The Judge is standing at the door!” – James 5:9

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2016, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE GOSPEL OF JOHN

Devotional - Testifying Of Jesus
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Sunday May 8, 2016
Devotional - Testifying Of Jesus

“You diligently study the Scriptures because you think that by them you possess eternal life. These are the Scriptures that testify about me” – John 5:39

 

In 1862, in a small town in eastern Hungary, Leopold Cohn was born. He lost both of his parents at the age of seven. His life became a struggle for existence, and he learned to trust in God with all of his heart. At 13 he decided to study to become a rabbi, and he graduated from the Talmudic academies at 18. He finished his formal studies, received smikha or ordination, and became happily married. Devoting himself to further research of the sacred writings and to earnest prayer, he sought to find the solution for the sufferings of his people and Messiah's long delay.

He immigrated to America and soon after his arrival in New York in the spring of 1892, Rabbi Cohn met a group of Jews who believed that the Messiah had already come. The first of these with whom he discussed his search was a trained Talmudist who belonged to a famous rabbinical family. This man gave Rabbi Cohn a copy of the New Testament Scriptures in Hebrew. Opening it to the beginning, Rabbi Cohn read from the Gospel of Matthew, "This is the book of the generation of Y'shua the Messiah, the son of David, the son of Abraham."

It was a momentous day. He read the book for some 13 hours and later wrote his reflections: "I could at least see that the Messiah's name was Y'shua, that he was born in Bethlehem of Judah, that He had lived in Jerusalem and communicated with my people, and that he came just at the time predicted in the prophecy of Daniel."

Leopold asked Christ into his life and later became the head of the Brownsville Mission to the Jews, an organization that now exists as Chosen People Ministries.

 

The Bible is the testimony of Jesus Christ. Throughout its books, it declares that Jesus is Lord of all. Today in prayer, worship the Lord and give Him all of your life for His glory.

 

“The Bible is the portrait of Jesus Christ.” – John Stott

 

God’s Word: “He said to them, ‘This is what I told you while I was still with you: Everything must be fulfilled that is written about me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms.’” – Luke 24:44

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2016, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE GOSPEL OF JOHN

Devotional - Doing God's Will
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Thursday May 5, 2016
Devotional - Doing God's Will

“‘My food,’ said Jesus, ‘is to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his work.’” – John 4:34

 

John Woolman was born in 1720 near the Mount Holly Township in New Jersey. His family belonged to the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers).

He began to work as a clerk for a merchant. When he was 23, his employer asked him to write a bill of sale for a slave. Though he told his employer that he thought that slaveholding was inconsistent with Christianity, he wrote the bill of sale. But slavery continued to gnaw at him. By the age of 26, John had become an independent and successful tradesman. He refused to write the part of a will that included disposing of a slave and, in that case, convinced the client to set the slave free.

In 1754 he published “Some Considerations on the Keeping of Negroes.” He continued to refuse to draw up wills that bequeathed ownership of slaves to heirs. Over time, and working on a personal level, he individually convinced many Quaker slaveholders to free their slaves.

As he went from one Friends' meeting to another, John expressed his concern about slaveholding. Gradually various Quaker Meetings began to see the evils of slavery; their minutes reflected their condemnation of the practice. John found his life’s work by doing the will of God.

 

Do you desire to do God’s will in your life? Today in prayer, praise the Lord that He desires you to live for Him and seek to do His will every day.

 

“Thou hast made us for Thyself, O God, and our hearts are restless until they find their rest in Thee.” – Augustine

 

God’s Word: “However, I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me--the task of testifying to the gospel of God's grace.” – Acts 20:24

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2016, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE GOSPEL OF JOHN

Devotional - I Must Become Less
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Wednesday May 4, 2016
Devotional - I Must Become Less

“He must become greater; I must become less.” – John 3:30

 

Mother Teresa began her work in Calcutta, India in 1948. For the 49 years, until her death, she led the Missionaries of Charity, a Roman Catholic religious congregation. This organization has over 4,500 sisters and was active in 133 countries. They run hospices and homes for people with HIV/AIDS, leprosy and tuberculosis; soup kitchens; dispensaries and mobile clinics; children's and family counseling programs; orphanages; and schools. Members must adhere to the vows of chastity, poverty, and obedience, as well as a fourth vow, to give "wholehearted free service to the poorest of the poor"

In her book “The Joy in Loving: A Guide to Daily Living” she gives practical steps to be humble:

“These are the few ways we can practice humility:

To speak as little as possible of one's self.

To mind one's own business.

Not to want to manage other people's affairs.

To avoid curiosity.

To accept contradictions and correction cheerfully.

To pass over the mistakes of others.

To accept insults and injuries.

To accept being slighted, forgotten and disliked.

To be kind and gentle even under provocation.

Never to stand on one's dignity.

To choose always the hardest.”

 

As we grow in Christ, we need to become more humble and to give more glory to the Lord. Today in prayer, praise the Lord that He is worthy of our praise and give Him glory throughout the day.

 

“We must view humility as one of the most essential things that characterizes Christianity.” – Jonathan Edwards

 

God’s Word: “Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.” – Matthew 18:4

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2016, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE GOSPEL OF JOHN

Devotional - The Source Of Happiness
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Tuesday May 3, 2016
Devotional - The Source Of Happiness

“In reply Jesus declared, ‘I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again.’” – John 3:3

 

In December 2006, Pitcher Barry Zito signed a seven-year deal with the San Francisco Giants. At the time, it was the largest contract ever given to a pitcher. But then he began to struggle on the mound and in his personal life.

“I couldn’t sleep at night,” said Barry.

For the next few years, Barry suffered multiple disappointments including being excluded from the 2010 Giants’ roster that went to the World Series.

He began searching books for answers, but his fiancé Amber pointed Barry in the right direction. He began reading the Bible and then sought out the team’s chaplain.

Barry prayed to give his life to Jesus.

“In my coming to Jesus moment, I had really amazing kind of feelings inside like I had this new identity,” said Barry. “And I knew Jesus was on my shoulder saying, ‘hey, I’m the guy.’”

Barry went on to play two more seasons and then retired from professional baseball. He’s found peace and purpose in life. He said: “I’m a whole complete person because my life is in Jesus Christ.”

 

Happiness, peace and contentment do not reside with money or fame. They can only be found in Jesus Christ. Today in prayer, praise the Lord that in Him you have a rich, eternal life.

 

“For a soul to come to Jesus, is the grandest event in its history.” – Joseph Alleine

 

God’s Word: “"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.” – John 3:16-17

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2016, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE GOSPEL OF JOHN

Devotional - His Miraculous Signs
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Monday May 2, 2016
Devotional - His Miraculous Signs

“This, the first of his miraculous signs, Jesus performed at Cana in Galilee. He thus revealed his glory, and his disciples put their faith in him.” – John 2:11

 

In December 2011, nine-year-old Annabel Beam was playing in a hollow cottonwood tree on the family’s farm in Burleson, Texas. She suddenly slipped and tumbled headfirst 30 feet to the bottom of the tree.

Miraculously, Annabel did not break any bones or suffer anything more than minor bumps and bruises.

Now Annabel had been diagnosed at age five with two painful, life-threatening digestive disorders, requiring a regimen of 10 drugs daily, including antibiotics, anticonvulsants, prescription-strength laxatives, reflux medication and painkillers. There was no known cure and the best Annabel’s parents could hope for were drugs to make her life more comfortable.

Yet just days after Annabel’s dramatic rescue, Christy realized that her daughter hadn’t asked for her usual pain medication. And her once-distended abdomen had inexplicably flattened. In fact, Annabel seemed unusually carefree and happy. Almost . . . normal.

As the weeks wore on, and as Christy gave her daughter less and less of the once-vital medication, it became startlingly clear to her parents that Annabel was no longer sick. She was healed.

The Beams are devout Christians and they did believe in miracles before their daughter got well, but as Kevin, 43, said, he thought miracles “were possible—just not probable.” Annabel, now 13, echoed: “I knew they happened. I just didn’t think they would happen to us.”

 

The same God who performed miracles in the Bible continues to do so to bring glory to Jesus Christ. Today in prayer, praise the Lord that He continually shows us His glory and place your faith in Him.

 

“A miracle is an event beyond the power of any known physical law to produce; it is a spiritual occurrence produced by the power of God, a marvel, a wonder.” – Billy Graham

 

God’s Word: “And when the Israelites saw the great power the LORD displayed against the Egyptians, the people feared the LORD and put their trust in him and in Moses his servant.” – Exodus 14:31

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2016, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE GOSPEL OF JOHN

Devotional - Adopted Into God's Family
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Monday May 2, 2016
Devotional - Adopted Into God's Family

“Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God” – John 1:12

 

Lynnette Cole was born on February 9, 1978 in Puerto Rico. Her parents abandoned her soon after her birth.

At ten months old, she was living in foster care with her older brother when Gail and Larry Cole adopted them. Her adoptive parents had previously been foster parents to a succession of over 100 children. She and her brother grew up in Tennessee.

Lynette grew up to be a beautiful young woman and she won the title Miss Tennessee Teen USA at age seventeen. She won the title Miss Tennessee USA in 2000 and also won the Miss USA pageant that same year.

Lynette grew up in the church and at age 13 she gave her life to Christ and was baptized. She credits the Lord and her “hero” parents for her success. She said: “Every Sunday, our family sat together in church, and afterwards we’d have lunch together and talk about life. I knew I wanted to become part of the Lord’s family. I wanted to live my life that way.”

 

No matter what are situation in life, the Lord of the Universe wants to adopt us as His children and give us a wonderful eternity. Today in prayer, praise the Lord that He is a loving God and He has given us the right to become His children through Jesus Christ.

 

“Unless we have seen in Jesus what God is like we would never even have dared to think of ourselves as being able to become the children of God. It is what Jesus is that opens to us the possibility of becoming the children of God.” – William Barclay

 

God’s Word: “I will be a Father to you, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty.” – 2 Corinthians 6:18

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2016, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE GOSPEL OF JOHN

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