Watching Daily At My Gates

August 10 Read Proverbs 19:1-10

Amid the many admonitions concerning the use of the tongue, we find verse 8. Do we work at getting wisdom? This is not the wisdom of worldly knowledge, though with wisdom it can profit. This is not the worldly wisdom that enables us to get ahead in this life. This is the wisdom of the knowledge of Jehovah. This is the wisdom that leads to eternal life. It is the wisdom that will keep us and will give us what is good in God’s eyes. How do we get it? We start with knowledge of Scripture. This is found by careful attention to the preaching. We also spend time in the study of the Bible. We do this in devotions, but we must not ignore the study of the Bible with others. Finally, we pray to God to open our hearts and minds to his truth. Let us seek the wisdom and understanding that has a real profit. Sing Psalter 428.

August 11 Read Proverbs 19:11-20

Verse 11 shows to us a gracious way that we must live. First of all, by controlling our anger we can show discretion in our dealings with others. In this way we will truly show that we are wise. Sometimes, even if we are right, we are better off swallowing our anger and our pride, and turn the other cheek. The second half of the verse does not mean that we ignore sin. That we may not do. But we can ignore the personal attacks and again turn the other cheek to those that would do us wrong. Think of what Christ did in his last days before he was crucified. Think of his prayer, “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.” Go and read Isaiah 53. In doing this we will know how to live verse 11 and by that knowledge know how to love God and our neighbor. Sing Psalter 369.

August 12 Read Proverbs 19:21-29

Solomon returns to pointed words of wisdom to his son. He reminds him of many salient points that God has shown to him. He speaks once more of the necessity of following the fear of the Lord. We need to remember that way in which we must walk in this life for it leads to happiness in the life to come. He reminds him of the folly of laziness. We, too, need this reminder. We especially need it in the ways of the Lord. The final verse of this chapter contains warnings of the calamities that will come upon those who do not heed Jehovah’s way. Will they fall upon us? Sing Psalter 323.

August 13 Read Proverbs 20:1-10

In this section of Proverbs, Solomon examines many aspects of life from the doings of kings to the work of the merchant. In verse 1 he reminds us of the power of alcohol. Alcohol is a good gift of God, but its misuse is the cause of much pain and suffering. The sin involved hurts not only the sinner, but also family, friends, and often the innocent bystander. The right use of it is something that young and old must consider. Solomon’s denunciation of alcohol’s misuse is complete when he calls those who misuse it fools. Let us use all of God’s good gifts wisely and to his honor and glory. Sing Psalter 281.

August 14 Read Proverbs 20:11-20

Solomon begins and ends this section with words of admonition to children and young people. First of all, we see that nothing escapes the notice of almighty God. Children are not innocent as some have said, but children are responsible for their actions even when very young. Secondly, the admonition to obey the fifth commandment is evident in verse 20. The parent-child relationship is a picture of God and his children. If we curse God, we will suffer extreme punishment. Children of all ages must honor their parents and especially their aged parents. Parents must expect and demand that honor. In this way we will best reflect the picture that God has given to us in this relationship. Then we can recite with joy Psalm 128. Sing Psalter 325.

August 15 Read Proverbs 20:21-30

Verse 23 is one of several verses in the book of Proverbs that can guide us in our daily life. In Israel, which was an agrarian society, the scale was a familiar tool in the marketplace. The merchant would weigh out his goods to sell to the shoppers. Unscrupulous vendors would figure out ways to cheat those buyers. In our daily lives we must be honest at all times whether we are the buyer or the seller. To do otherwise is to sin against the eighth commandment. In doing so, we neither honor God nor love our neighbor. Let us make it our goal to be honest and God glorifying in all of our lives. Sing Psalter 24.

August 16 Read Proverbs 21:1-10

What comfort we can find in verse 1! As Christians who must live in the world but not be of it, we can know that all things are in our sovereign God’s hands. He controls all acts of all kinds of government. Whether the head of government be a king, a president, a prime minister, or even a dictator, he can only do what God allows him to do. God makes a Pharaoh let Israel go. God makes a Cyrus allow Israel to return to Jerusalem. God will direct all heads of state so that this world will come to the end that he alone has decreed. As Jeremiah and Paul both commanded, we may and we must pray for those who are in authority over us. God will bless us when we walk in his way, and that includes directing those in authority to care for his church. Sing Psalter 223.

August 17 Read Proverbs 21:11-20

Here we have a series of proverbs dealing with how the righteous shall and shall not live. A title might be “Living an Antithetical Life.” This life must always characterize us. It is not something that we put down and pick up again when it is convenient. We must always be saying yes to the things of God and no to the things of Satan. Solomon, as he expressed in the book of Ecclesiastes, has experienced all parts of life. He did not always walk in the antithesis. So he knew how to instruct us. Each of us, as we go through our lives day by day, must see the right way. That is the narrow way which leads to life eternal. May we always ask our heavenly Father to keep us on that way. Sing Psalter 363.

August 18 Read Proverbs 21:21-31

There are many verses in this section that have practical application for our lives. Maybe you will pick a different thought than I have today. I want to remind us about verse 23. Solomon has mentioned the use of the tongue on many occasions. He must have seen great misuse of the tongue, and maybe it was one of his besetting sins. As people of God, we can do more damage in our families and in the church of God with the tongue than with almost any other deed. Let us daily pray for guidance in this matter. The last clause of this section will give to us the direction that we need to go. “Safety is of the Lord.” There is no other haven in life, as Solomon discovered, than in the haven of rest, Christ Jesus. Let us seek that haven each and every day of our lives. Sing Psalter 298.

August 19 Read Proverbs 22:1-9

It does not matter what time of the year it is, it is always time to “train up a child.” This verse graces the stationary of many Christian schools. It is a command of God to parents of covenant seed. It is not a choice they have, but a command and through that command a conviction. Covenant children have a way. It is a way ordered by Jehovah God. When they are trained in that way, there is a reward. That reward is a continuing walk in the way in which they are trained. Parents, grandparents, and all other adults have a high calling in this matter. If we fail, we become like Eli. If we heed God’s command, we will have olive plants around our tables and polished stones in God’s palace. Let us heed this command and make it our conviction. Sing Psalter 14.

August 20 Read Proverbs 22:10-19

Solomon is beginning to wrap up his admonitions to his son and the church as a whole. You see in this section some summaries of past thoughts and instructions. Then in verses 17-19 we see a general summary of what we must do in this life. In all that we do, we must bow down and hear the Word of the Lord. After hearing we must apply our hearts to that work. Solomon then gives two reasons for these actions. First off all, it is a pleasant thing in this life. Secondly, we see that we must trust in God for all things. Do we sometimes weary in this life and of this life? Draw near unto God, and he will draw near unto us. Seek him, and know that he will care for you in all your ways. Sing Psalter 247.

August 21 Read Proverbs 22:20-29

While the physical reality of verse 28 may not have as much significance for us as it did for those of Solomon’s day, the spiritual picture is rife with meaning. In Israel there would be stones piled up to mark a man’s property lines. These stones were first placed when Israel regained the land as they returned from Egypt. To move those stone markers was to steal someone’s land that was a picture of his inheritance in heaven. We have ancient landmarks as well. We have been given the beautiful doctrine of salvation by faith alone. We must guard that landmark and not let it be removed. Our eternal inheritance is not on this earth but in heaven. It was gained for us by the work of Christ on the cross. Let us keep that landmark ever in front of us, and let it lead us to eternal glory. Sing Psalter 227.

August 22 Read Proverbs 23:1-9

Solomon spends a few verses talking about a practical part of our lives. While he gives good counsel concerning eating habits, there is more than that here. Earthly food is but a picture of that which is spiritual. Some food on this earth has no nutritional value. It tastes good, and we might crave it, but it has nothing to help us grow or remain strong in this life. There are words and doctrines that have the same effects. They may taste good and entice us, but they have no value and might even harm us. Think of the story of Daniel and his three friends. Their faith kept them from eating the kings’ meat. The King of Kings gave them a strength that no one else had. Let us by faith seek for the meat that does not perish. Sing Psalter 135.

August 23 Read Proverbs 23:10-18

Verses 15-18 sound like farewell remarks a father and mother would make to one of their children as he leaves the house to go out and make his own way in the world. The parents wish for their offspring’s heart to be wise. Along with a wise heart they want to know that the child’s mouth speaks wisdom. As the child looks around the world and sees all the enticements found in it, the parent admonishes him to seek Jehovah’s fear at all times. Why is this so? Not because of pride or some earthly desire, but because in a right heart and right living there is a blessed end. That end is eternal life with God. May this be our prayer for our children, and may our children heed such an admonition for God’s sake. Sing Psalter 214.

August 24 Read Proverbs 23:19-28

How do you buy the truth? It is not something that you can find in the marketplaces of the world. The truth is only found in the Word of God and faithful preaching of that Word. It can only be gotten when that Word is faithfully discussed among God’s people. Once that truth is obtained, it must not be let go. We must hold it fast in every aspect of our lives. As we are shopping, we must also pick up wisdom, instruction, and understanding. These along with truth are a matched set. You must have all four. Let us seek that truth, and let us purchase it knowing that its possession gives to us a great treasure. Sing Psalter 60.

August 25 Read Proverbs 23:29-35

Here we have an unusual passage in the book of Proverbs. It is unusual not for its subject matter; Solomon has addressed this subject before. It is unusual for its length. Solomon has not often spent this many consecutive verses on one subject. Solomon had seen the effects of the misuse of alcohol. He had seen the troubles it had brought upon individuals and probably their families. He does not condemn alcohol; he condemns and warns against its misuse. These words are very applicable in today’s world as well. How much trouble has been brought to God’s people and to his church by the misuse of alcohol? Each of us must contemplate its use in our lives. Each of us must see that this good gift of God must be used with wisdom. Let us consider alcohol’s ways, and let us use it wisely. Sing Psalter 140.

August 26 Read Proverbs 24:1-9

Notice the two contrasts in this selection. Verses 3-6 once again extol the virtues of true wisdom. The other verses warn against the folly of foolishness and its variety of expression. Which do we choose, people of God? Do we wish to be wise in God’s eyes or accounted to be a fool? Verse three nicely sums up the benefits of wisdom while verse 9 lays out the end of those who choose folly. Let us get wisdom and as Solomon has said, “Get understanding.” In this way we will live a life pleasing to God now and have an outlook on the future reserved for God’s people. Sing Psalter 251.

August 27 Read Proverbs 24:10-20

There are various thoughts in this section upon which we could ponder. Let us look at verses 17-20. Our human nature is that when we see someone who is our “enemy” have problems that we rejoice. I say our “enemy” because we must be careful about classifying anyone as such. If God puts them in our path, we must love them, even as Christ commanded us. In fact we should almost ignore the activities of the wicked. We must give them over unto God. If we are consumed by the world’s activities, it will be to our downfall. Let us seek God and if he puts someone in our path let us fulfill the first and second great commandments in loving God and our neighbor. Sing Psalter 165.

August 28 Read Proverbs 24:21-34

Here we have a section in which Solomon discusses a variety of matters that belong to our life on this earth. As each of us must work or prepare for work, it is good for us to look at verses 30-34. This is a topic that Solomon has addressed more than once in his book of wisdom. Are we lazy? Are we tempted to be lazy? Let us listen to the words of the wise preacher. Solomon learned from seeing laziness in the world. Do we learn? Do we learn from our own bouts of laziness? Let us heed the wise teacher and vow to be industrious in whatever station or calling the Lord has placed us. Let us flee laziness in all of its forms. Sing Psalter 101.

August 29 Read Proverbs 25:1-10

In verses 9 and 10 we have another aspect to the use of our tongues. In these verses we find some beginning principles of the carrying out of the truths of Matthew 18:15-17. When we believe someone or some body has wronged us, we must take the wrong up with the person or the body. We must not spread the perceived wrong to others. Quite often the wrong can be righted very quickly with the person to whom the wrong is done. When it cannot, then there is a proper method to continue to right that wrong. Christian friendships are important in this life. Damage done to them in the misuse of the tongue is often not repaired easily. Let us talk to our neighbor and seek to walk in Christian harmony with him. Sing Psalter 70.

August 30 Read Proverbs 25:11-20

The picture in verse 13 is not a snowfall that blankets unharvested crops. But rather it is the snow taken from the mountains and placed into the drinks of the hot and weary harvesters. Just as that snow is used for refreshment, so is the word of a faithful messenger. What messenger is there that brings more refreshment than does the faithful minister of God’s Word? When we hear that Word it is a message from faithful Jehovah to cool our brows in this dry and thirsty land. Let us seek after that Word at all times, and let us welcome that faithful messenger. May God send us his message each and every week. Sing Psalter 334.

August 31 Proverbs 25:21-28

In verse 25 we find another reference to the ability of cold water to refresh. Israel was a dry dusty land most of the year. That drink of cold water was precious. As Israel would learn not too many years later in their history, they would need refreshment of another sort. They would need the refreshment of the gospel. The prophets would bring them the good news that Christ would redeem them. For the faithful this was refreshing news. This is our state as well. The world in which we live is a dry and thirsty land spiritually. It is only when we hear the gospel faithfully preached that we take in the refreshment we need. Let us crave that gospel, and let us seek it daily. Sing Psalter 336.

September 1 Read Proverbs 26:1-12

Here we have one of the longer sections in the book of Proverbs on one subject. This is not a new subject for Solomon or us. The subject of folly is one we must heed. There are two kinds of people in the world: the wise and the foolish. We must learn how to live with and among the foolish. Verses 4 and 5 seem to contradict each other. But they, too, are among Solomon’s wise sayings. In verse 4 Solomon tells us to be quiet and not act like the fool among them. We do no good for them or us when we act like them. In verse 5 he tells us that a word of reproof may be necessary at the right time. We must know by God’s Word how we must act and speak even among fools. Sing Psalter 25.

September 2 Read Proverbs 26:13-19

There are two important thoughts in this section for God’s people. Even the very young can learn from Solomon’s wisdom here. First of all, Solomon admonishes us not to be lazy. He gives to us several fitting examples of what a lazy person is like. Laziness is stealing. We steal from God in that we do not use the time that he has given to us. We also steal from God when do not use the talents and abilities that he has given us. The second thought is found in the last two verses. The world we live in today is all about fun. It’s motto is “If it is fun it must be all right.” Much of what is called fun is actually going against the second great commandment. If we do not love our neighbor in our actions toward him, may we call it fun? Solomon does not think so, and more importantly neither does God. Let us seek to love God and our neighbor in all that we do. Sing Psalter 119.

September 3 Proverbs 26:20-28

Once again Solomon returns to sins of the tongue. We do well to read through these verses more than once and see ourselves in the mirror of faith. What are we like? For what do we need confession and repentance of sins? In truth we commit all of these sins each day. We all are affected by the misuses of our own tongues. We may have all been hurt by someone else’s sin, but our focus must be on ourselves. Do we love God with our tongue? Do we love our neighbor as ourselves with our tongue? Let us pray for the grace to guard our tongues and show love for God and the neighbor. In this way we will find the blessing of Jehovah. Sing Psalter 11.

September 4 Read Proverbs 27:1-9

Good friends are worth their weight in gold. This is not one of Solomon’s proverbs, but the idea can be found in these verses. Verse 9 sums up the thought. We need friends who will give to us wise counsel. That counsel will be steeped in God’s Word. This will be counsel that will admonish us to walk in the way of that Word. We must also be that kind of a friend. We must not just tell people what they want to hear. We must tell them what they need to hear. Let us seek that Godly kind of friend, and let us be that same godly kind of friend. Sing Psalter 371.

September 5 Read Proverbs 27:10-18

Solomon continues with admonitions and advice for the church in dealing with those around them. In verse 17 we see important words for the church. Solomon takes a common sight in Israel and applies it to spiritual life. In those days they did not have the sharpening tools that we have today. They would rub two iron tools together to straighten and sharpen the edge of them. When God’s people meet together in the study of God’s word, they help each other. Here we find the admonition of studying God’s Word with others. When we engage in discussions about the word of God, we benefit in that we are more able to use that Word. This is the same admonition of Paul given to Timothy when he said, “Study to show thyself approved before God…” Let us meet together to discuss God’s Word and not man’s. Sing Psalter 337.

September 6 Read Proverbs 27:19-27

In verses 23-27 we see some practical advice from the man of great wisdom. He tells us that we cannot ignore our daily lives. If we remember his words of wisdom in Ecclesiastes, he told us to pay attention to our daily lives but with the fear of God in the forefront of our thoughts. God has given to us the earth for our place. We must pay attention to the little corner that is ours. We must use it to his glory, but for our welfare. Throughout this book Solomon has warned us not to be sluggards. Here is the positive side of the same admonition. As we do this, let us remember to pray for our daily bread that comes from Jehovah. Sing Psalter 1.

September 7 Read Proverbs 28:1-7

Once again we have a series of proverbs in the form of antithetical parallelism. Many of the verses either have the word “but” in them to show the opposite meaning, or there are two opposite words or ideas. Each of them shows the way of the righteous compared with the way of the wicked. Read the verses again and seek the wisdom in them that comes from Jehovah. Sing Psalter 327.

September 8 Read Proverbs 28:8-14

Verse 13 is good for us to consider often. The old man, which resides in us, would have us hide all our wrongdoings. The way of the child of God is by confession of sins. David had to learn this by a very hard lesson. From his lesson we, too, should learn. After confessing our sins, then we must seek to walk a life of sanctification. This is the way of killing the old man of sin and living out of the new man of Christ. This is not something that can be done once in a while. This is something that must be done daily and even hourly. In this way we shall find true happiness and receive the mercies of Jehovah. Sing Psalter 83.

September 9 Read Proverbs 28:15-21

Notices all the comparisons made in this section. We would do well to examine each one of them separately because each gives to the child of God instruction in daily life. God’s Word is our guide for a right walk in our lives. Verse 20 speaks of a faithful man. This faithfulness is not an earthly faithfulness to something or someone, even though that is part of a right walk. This faithfulness is a spiritual faithfulness to God. The blessings received are not earthly blessings, even though God does give his people what they need for this life. We must live our lives as citizens of the kingdom that is above. Let us strive to do that every day. Sing Psalter 149.

September 10 Read Proverbs 28:22-28

Verse 26 serves as a nice summary for many of the thoughts of the book of Proverbs. When we trust in our own hearts, we will try to do things that are to our own advantage. We will not love God or the neighbor in anything that we do. On the other had if we walk wisely, we will trust in God. As the hymn writer put it, “Trust and obey for there’s no other way to be happy in Jesus.” Trusting and obeying our heavenly Father is the way to true blessedness. It is how we can walk wisely in this life. The blessing that we receive is deliverance from this vale of tears unto the glorious heavenly kingdom. Sing Psalter 100.

September 11 Read Proverbs 29:1-9

Again we have a collection of antithetical proverbs describing the way of the wise and the foolish. These proverbs cover a wide area of life, and each has a message to which we should attend. In verse 6 we see the difference between the songs of the world and of the church. The world’s music causes a snare. Read some of its words, and see how they describe some very wicked thoughts. Then read the songs of Zion, and enjoy the peace that they bring. God’s people need those songs because the rejoicing is the rejoicing over sin and Satan. Sing Psalter 261.

September 12 Read Proverbs 29:10-18

Among this group of proverbs that speak of a variety of sins, we find two proverbs which give instruction concerning child rearing. In both verses 15 and 17 Solomon instructs parents to correct their children. This correction must be, as Solomon has expressed it in other places in his book of wisdom, founded on the Word of God. Only when children walk in God’s word will they bring delight to their parents. Parents must correct their children in this manner. This correction is not grievous, but it brings true happiness. Sing Psalter 90.

September 13 Read Proverbs 29:19-27

In verse 25 we find words which we would do well to always follow. In this world many would attach themselves to some person. Whether it be a politician, a sports figure, someone from the entertainment industry, or even just an ordinary person, there is no hope there. The only hope of safety is in Jehovah. Jehovah will bring us through all situations in life. Jehovah will care for us because, as it states in verse 26, all men’s judgment comes from him. Let us put our trust in him all of the time. By doing that we can have the hearty confidence that we will be protected. Sing Psalter 71.

September 14 Read Proverbs 30:1-7

Bible scholars are not certain who this Agur is. There are many theories. Some say that it is a pen name for Solomon. In verse 2 and 3 he recognizes himself as he is naturally. He see that he has the old man of sin in him. In verses 4-6 he speaks of God and of Christ. The writer recognizes that there is a power that has created all things. He recognizes that God’s word is pure and must not be tampered with. In this day and age, men often try to rewrite the Bible. They make it say things that it does not say. Let us, as we are directed throughout Scripture, not tamper with God’s Word. Let us use it, meditate upon it, and cherish it. Sing Psalter 42.

September 15 Read Proverbs 30:7-14

Paul in I Timothy makes the following statement; “But godliness with contentment is great gain.” Are we content, people of God? Do we live lives in the way of the wisdom of Jehovah that Agur shows to us? “Give me neither poverty nor riches…” Are we content with the station and calling in which God has placed us? As we look to the future, we must let these words be our guide. Let us be content with food convenient for us. When we do this, we will find true blessedness on this earth as we await heavenly happiness. Sing Psalter 95.

September 16 Read Proverbs 30:15-23

The whole world is full of pictures that speak of spiritual truths. Solomon used his wisdom to seek these pictures out and to learn those meanings. The Belgic Confession calls all creation “a most elegant book.” The book is to be viewed through the glasses of faith. First of all, we need to spend time viewing creation. This means we must put forth the effort to see it. Secondly, we must view it through faith, which means we must study God’s Word daily and diligently. Finally, we must allow creation to speak to us. Are we listening to God’s voice in creation? Sing Psalter 285.

September 17 Read Proverbs 30:24-33

Solomon continues with his observations of the world of nature. In it he finds various animals that exhibit a way of life that should be emulated by man. The last two verses of the chapter directly address man’s habits. There are times to speak and times to not speak. The controlling of our temper is an important part of our lives that must be lived to God’s glory. Our daily life must be guided by God’s ordinances. Let us learn those laws and live a life that glorifies God in all things. Sing Psalter 37.

September 18 Read Proverbs 31:1-9

There are many conjectures as to whom Lemuel is or who his mother is. The important part is not their identity but rather her words. Lemuel’s mother counsels him to stay away from various sins. She acts similar to any parent who counsels his children. She also counsels her son to care for the poor and distressed. This is not only the work of rulers but also the work of all the people of God. These are the words of James concerning pure religion found in James 1. Children and young people need such counsel. Parents must give it and it must be received properly. This is the meaning of the fifth commandment. Sing Psalter 25,

September 19 Read Proverbs 31:10-18

Lemuel’s mother moves from admonishing her son about various sins to describing for him the wife he should seek. Is this the wife that you seek young men? Do you look for a virtuous woman? Do you overlook physical features to see the spiritual character of the young woman that you desire? What about you, young woman? Are you virtuous? Do you seek a husband that you can do well for all the days of your life? Parents, too, can learn how to raise their children from these verses. Let us read them often even as we raise our sons and daughters to take their places in the church of Christ. Sing Psalter 360.

September 20 Read Proverbs 31:19-24

One of the themes found in Proverbs is care for the poor. In verse 20 we find that the virtuous woman is on the lookout for those who are needy. When she sees or finds them, she cares for them. It may be food, clothing, or some other physical need. It might also be a word of encouragement or some spiritual care that she provides in a hard time. This practice is one that needs to be learned. Mothers must show their daughters how to care for the poor. Jesus told us that the poor are always present among us. Do we look to care for them? Sing Psalter 101.

September 21 Read Proverbs 31:25-31

Verse 30 sums up the chapter. It is much like the summary verse found in Ecclesiastes 12. “Fear God and keep his commandments…” In all that the virtuous woman does, she must fear Jehovah all of her life. This is not something accomplished later on in life. Young girls and teenagers must be taught by parents to fear Jehovah. Solomon’s earlier admonitions to “My son” are applicable to daughters as well. The journey to becoming a virtuous woman begins at a young age. May parents and adults constantly work at bringing up both sons and daughters that fear Jehovah. In this way God’s church will be blessed and will prosper. Sing Psalter 62.

September 22 Read I Corinthians 1:1-9

Paul, in his letter to the church at Corinth, begins with a section of praise and benediction to God. Like many of his benedictions, it centers around salvation in Christ. Count the number of times he uses the phrase, “Lord Jesus Christ.” We can be assured that our salvation is sure by the phrase in verse 9, “God is faithful.” This faithfulness is ours no matter in what way he leads us. As we go through this life, whether young or old, we can be assured of that faithfulness. We can also be assured of our place in glory by that faithfulness. Let us give thanks each day for the grace of Christ and the faithfulness of the Father imparted to us by the Holy Spirit. Sing Psalter 391.

September 23 Read I Corinthians 1:10-16

One of the problems in the church at Corinth was that of church unity. We will find this throughout the letter. Church unity is precious. Without unity in a congregation among the members, the congregation will be weak and may even die. Every member must work toward the goal of a unified church. Just as in the body one infected part will affect the rest of the body, so in the church one weakness will affect the whole church. Let us strive for that unity as members and as office bearers. In this way God’s name will be glorified, and we will be ready for the gathering together of the whole church as the new Jerusalem. Sing Psalter 369

September 24 Read I Corinthians 1:17-25

If there is one area that is the weakness of congregations throughout the world, it is the area of preaching. Like the Greeks of Paul’s day, many think good solid preaching is foolishness. Witness the many alternative worship formats. Witness the watered down stuff that passes for preaching. The lively preaching of the Word, which is the Word of Christ speaking to his people, is ignored and scorned today. We need to seek sound, exegetical preaching of the Word. We need to cherish that preaching, for it is Christ speaking to us about the great salvation he has wrought for us. Sing Psalter 337.

September 25 Read I Corinthians 1:26-31

As the first chapter of Paul’s letter to Corinth finishes, Paul reminds us of a very important principle. It is a principle that would guide the church at Corinth then, and it is a principle that should guide all phases of our lives. Church unity will be preserved when all glory is given to God. Family unity also will be preserved when God is given the glory. Giving God the glory will stop the over use of the pronouns “I” and “me”. Giving God the glory will help us keep both the first and second great commandments. We truly will love God and our neighbor if our goal in life is to glorify God. Let us remember this principle all the days of our lives. “Soli Deo Gloria!” Sing Psalter 368.

September 26 Read I Corinthians 2:1-9

The preaching opens to us the mystery of Christ and the gospel. This is not something that is apprehended by man’s logic; the Greeks were masters at that. This is something that comes by the Holy Spirit. The glorious end of that preaching is salvation in Christ and eternal life in heaven. Once in a while we get a small glimpse of that glory, but none of us are prepared for the full glory that will be ours in heaven. Let us cling to that preaching which shows to us the wonderful mystery of salvation. Sing Psalter 350.

September 27 Read I Corinthians 2:10-16

One of the characteristics that set us apart from the world is that we have the Holy Spirit within us. This Spirit gives to us the knowledge and assurance of our salvation. He is the Comforter promised by Christ just before he died for our salvation. This Spirit is only given to those who have been chosen before the foundations of the world. He helps us in our infirmities and makes intercession for us before the throne of God. This is a great gift. Do we use it to God’s honor and glory? Sing Psalter 287.

September 28 Read I Corinthians 3:1-9

The church of Christ is made of men and women who live upon this earth. As earthly bodies they also have an earthly makeup both physically and spiritually. As spiritual babies we must be nourished slowly. We are taught with the pure milk of the Word until we are able to be given meat. This is a natural progression and must not be overlooked. The figure then switches to that of a crop. Different laborers worked with the Corinthians. They carried out different tasks, but ultimately, as it always is in life, God was in control. This is a comfort for us to know that God is the master gardener and builder. Let us grow in grace under his wise handling of our lives. Sing Psalter 359.

September 29 Read I Corinthians 3:10-23

Paul finishes this admonition to not follow a man but to follow Christ with another figure. This figure is the figure of a building with different trades working to complete that building. God is the masterbuilder or contractor. Each of the other ministers who have come to Corinth is a different tradesman. All work together for the finished project, the church built on the foundation of Christ. This is not any building but the living body of Christ. The summary is found in verse 22 and 23. Reread those words and learn to live out of them. Sing Psalter 237.

September 30 Read I Corinthians 4:1-6

Paul in this section admonishes all believers to esteem highly the ministers of God. They are to be esteemed not for their own sakes but for the work that God has placed upon them. In this day and age it is common to “blame” or to judge anyone with whom we come into contact. Paul reminds us that we will be judged by almighty God for all things at the judgment day. These “all things” include our thoughts and that which was done in secret. There are many texts in both the Old and New Testaments which bear out this truth. Let us esteem highly those who preach the gospel, for it is God’s gift in them that this is done. Sing Psalter 271.

October 1 Read I Corinthians 4:7-13

Paul uses his own circumstances to set forth the ridicule and shame a Christian may have to endure in this world for the gospel’s sake. Christians were persecuted in almost any way imaginable in some areas of the Roman Empire. They could stay strong in their faith only by the grace of God. He will give to us this grace to stand in the day when we may be persecuted. Persecution is one of the signs of the end times. Seeing that we see so many other signs, we should be aware that this one is coming to us as well. Christians in other parts of the world have already experienced this sign. Let us hold fast to the unity of the church so that we may help each other, by the grace of God, to stand in the evil days that approach. Sing Psalter 379.

October 2 Read I Corinthians 4:14-21

Our officebearers come to us as spiritual fathers. Like earthly fathers they love their children. Sometimes they must come with a word of admonition. Sometimes they come with a word of commendation. It does not matter the reason for which they come, they must come in love. Paul had this love for the Corinthians even in their sins. He told them that he would come and bring to them the Word. That is what we must desire, and that is what our officebearers must bring. Let us heed God’s Word as it guides us in our lives. Sing Psalter 325.

October 3 Read I Corinthians 5:1-8

Along with a lack of unity in the church, the Corinthians had another fault which Paul addresses. That fault is they allowed a man who was living in sin to remain in their midst. Paul’s words to them were simple. They must put that man out of the church. This must be done for two reasons. First of all, it was for the man’s sake. By putting him out they were showing to him that he could not remain in the church of Christ and live in sin. Secondly, they must put him out for the church’s sake. We have a common saying that one rotten apple can spoil the whole bushel. This is true in the church as well. God’s church must keep itself pure from sin. This too will help preserve its unity. Sing Psalter 300.

October 4 Read I Corinthians 5:9-13

Paul continues to admonish and instruct the church at Corinth to remove from them the sinner. In this instruction he gives to all Christians the admonition to not associate with those who walk in gross public sins. Even though we are in the world, we must live an antithetical life. One way that we do this is to not have company with evildoers. In our normal every day life we might come into contact with such people, but in our social lives we must not associate with them. In this way we will keep ourselves unspotted from the world as James charges us to do. May God grant us the grace to live this way in our life on this earth. Sing Psalter 253.

October 5 Read I Corinthians 6:1-11

Paul continues admonishing and instructing the church concerning sins found within it. There are two principles found in this portion of Scripture. First of all, as much as is possible, we are to handle matters between church members within the church. Unless it is absolutely necessary, we should not go to the world’s courts. That leads to the second principle. That principle is that we must keep ourselves separate from the world. This is not to say we must be like the Amish and similar groups, but rather we are to walk an antithetical walk in these matters as well. As Christians, members of Christ’s body, when we walk this way we will promote and enjoy much more unity in the church. Sing Psalter 371.

October 6 Read I Corinthians 6:12-20

Many in this world think that their body is their own to do whatever they wish with it. This was the thinking in the ancient world of Greece and Rome. Nothing, as Paul points out in this chapter, can be further from the truth. Our bodies are the temples of the Holy Spirit, and, as with any temple, must be kept holy. Therefore we must use our physical body to glorify God at all times. This is a great responsibility, and one that cannot be carried out without grace. Let us pray for the grace necessary to use our bodies in all activities only to glory of the maker of that body and not for our own lusts and pleasures. Sing Psalter 366.