Daily Archives: January 5, 2023

God Is One, And Is Complete

46 Bible verses about Completion46 Bible verses about Completion
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Something’s Missing

woman kneading bread dough on a countertop

 

One of my favorite hobbies in the world is making bread. The process is so satisfying — seeing the dough take shape, rise overnight, and be kneaded into a beautiful loaf ready to feed my family or friends.

I have been making homemade bread for so long now, I can almost do it with my eyes closed. Well, almost. A few months back, I got in a serious conversation with my husband while I was making a loaf of bread. Because we were talking about something that was much more important than my loaf of bread, my focus was on our conversation and not on my bread-making. I mixed all the ingredients, let my bread sit in the bowl on the counter to rise, and went to bed. When I woke up in the morning, the bread had risen correctly, so I put it in the oven.

Thirty minutes had passed, and viola, a beautiful loaf of bread! We cut it open to eat it, and for some reason, even though it looked beautiful, it tasted flavorless. It was completely plain and not tasty at all. I gasped when I realized it was because I had forgotten to add salt! My recipe was simple; it called only for flour, starter, salt, and water. I had made a loaf of bread with essentially only flour and water!

Even though my bread appeared perfect on the outside, we had no choice but to throw it out. It was everything bread should be, but without the salt, it was no good to eat or use. It looked like a delicious loaf of bread, but it had no purpose as a loaf because it was truly tasteless.

In Matthew 5, Jesus preached his famous sermon on the mount to the disciples. During this sermon, He explained to them the importance of being “salt” to the earth.

“You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot” (Matthew 5:13 NIV).

As Christians, we provide salt to this earth. Have you ever had someone tell you that there was just a light that shined in you? Or, had someone tell you that you made their day based off the way you treated them? This is the salt of the gospel in you. It’s seasoning to others and its life to those around us. When we lose our saltiness and become like the culture around us, we become not what we were intended to be as Christians.

We are meant to be set apart. We are meant to appear different than the world, to provide a specific saltiness, that is the salt of the gospel. When people encounter this salt and “taste” it in us, they will see Christ and be drawn to want more of that salt, which is the gospel of Jesus!

Jeremiah 1:5 declares,

“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.”

Being salt to this earth means being set apart. Let those around you see the salt of the gospel in and through your life so that there is no denying how great this gospel of Jesus truly is!

Would you pray with me?
Jesus, help me to be the salt this world needs to those around me. May I live set apart as You have called me to be. Help others to see Your truth and Your gospel through my life and be drawn to You! In Your name. Amen.

Today’s Devotions

Morning

January 5

Genesis 2:18 18The LORD God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.”

Man was not meant to be a hermit. A solitary condition is not good. God designed Eve as a helper suitable for Adam. That is God’s plan and God’s intention for women. I can hear the howls of derision from those with secular minds. The helper will be a team member not a slave. What they accomplish together is their accomplishment and not his alone. He must share the glory with his helper. In the upside down world of the Kingdom, the servant is the greatest. They need each other and are incomplete without each other.

The spiritual picture here is of Christ and the church. We were made new creatures from the blood that flowed from His side, just as Eve was made from the blood flowing from Adam’s side. We are to be His helper. That is why He calls us co-laborers. It is not as though He could not do it by Himself, but that He wants to include us in what He is doing. He wants to share His work with us for our benefit. It is not good for us to be alone. We need to be at His side, laboring with Him for His glory.

Genesis 2:24 For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh.We are to be joined to Him so that all other attachments are a distant second. Does that describe your relationship with the groom, Christ Jesus? By His Spirit, are you a suitable helper for Him?

Prayer: Help me to be the helper You intend me to be as I yield to Your life in me.

Streams in the Desert – January 5

  • 20235 Jan

Lord, there is none beside thee to help. (2 Chronicles 14:11, RV).

Remind God of His entire responsibility. “There is none beside thee to help.” The odds against Asa were enormous. There was a million of men in arms against him, besides three hundred chariots. It seemed impossible to hold his own against that vast multitude. There were no allies who would come to his help; his only hope, therefore, was in God.

It may be that your difficulties have been allowed to come to so alarming a pitch that you may be compelled to renounce all creature aid, to which in lesser trials you have had recourse, and cast yourself back on your Almighty Friend. Put God between yourself and the foe.

To Asa’s faith, Jehovah seemed to stand between the might of Zerah and himself, as one who had no strength. Nor was he mistaken. We are told that the Ethiopians were destroyed before the Lord and before His host, as though celestial combatants flung themselves against the foe in Israel’s behalf, and put the large host to rout, so that Israel had only to follow up and gather the spoil. Our God is Jehovah of hosts, who can summon unexpected reinforcements at any moment to aid His people. Believe that He is there between you and your difficulty, and what baffles you will flee before Him, as clouds before the gale.
–F. B. Meyer

When nothing whereon to lean remains,
When strongholds crumble to dust;
When nothing is sure but that God still reigns,
That is just the time to trust.
‘Tis better to walk by faith than sight,
In this path of yours and mine;
And the pitch-black night, when there’s no outer light
Is the time for faith to shine.

Abraham believed God, and said to sight, “Stand back!” and to the laws of nature, “Hold your peace!” and to a misgiving heart, “Silence, thou lying tempter!” He believed God.
–Joseph Parker

A psalm for the New Year

By: Charles Spurgeon

‘But grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen.’ 2 Peter 3:18

Suggested Further Reading: Philippians 3:8–16

My beloved brethren in the Lord Jesus, we must see to it that we ripen in the knowledge of him. O that this year we may know more of him in his divine nature, and in his human relationship to us; in his finished work, in his death, in his resurrection, in his present glorious intercession, and in his future royal advent. To know more of Christ in his work is, I think, a blessed means of enabling us to work more for Christ. We must study to know more of Christ also in his character—in that divine compound of every perfection, faith, zeal, deference to his Father’s will, courage, meekness and love. He was the Lion of the tribe of Judah, and yet the man upon whom the dove descended in the waters of baptism. Let us thirst to know him of whom even his enemies said, ‘Never man spake like this man,’ and his unrighteous judge said, ‘I find no fault in him.’ Above all, let us long to know Christ in his person. This year endeavour to make a better acquaintance with the crucified one. Study his hands and his feet; abide hard by the cross, and let the sponge, the vinegar and the nails, be subjects of your devout attention. This year seek to penetrate into his very heart, and to search those deep far-reaching caverns of his unknown love, that love which can never find a rival, and can never know a parallel. If you can add to this a knowledge of his sufferings, you will do well. O if you can grow in the knowledge of fellowship—if you shall this year drink of his cup, and be baptised with his baptism—if you shall this year abide in him and he in you—blessed shall you be.

For meditation: As a child the Lord Jesus Christ grew—in strength, in wisdom, in stature and in favour with God and man (Luke 2:40,52). Those who have become God’s children by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ need to do exactly the same.