One Year Bible Reading Plan and Devotional
Today’s Bible Reading: January 23
Download the full one-year Bible reading plan here:[Download not found]
Clicking on the Scripture links above will open a new window where you can read the scripture from the Holman Christian Standard Bible at Biblegateway.com or choose the Bible version you prefer to read. Check back each day to get the Scripture to read in the One Year Bible Reading Plan.
Upon This Rock
I don’t think you understand
One day a wife said to her husband: “I know you believe you understand what you think I said, but I’m not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant.” When we read the word in Matthew 16:18, “Upon this rock”, I wonder if God sometimes says the same thing. Is Peter the rock on which God would build His church?
Peter’s name means “stone”
Certainly God used Peter to build the church. We don’t want to make light of how God worked through Peter to accomplish His plan for the church. In Matthew 16:17-18, Jesus changes Simon’s name to Peter. The name “Peter” is derived from Greek Πέτρος (Petros) meaning “stone”. Many times in the Bible, God changed someone’s name because He was calling them to live out a new mission or identify with a new identity that God was giving them. This is exactly what Jesus was doing with Simon, seeing in him some great potential that no one else saw. Everyone else saw Simon, Jesus saw Peter.
Simon was anything but a rock. He wasn’t dependable the way a Christian leader needs to be. Without God’s Spirit, he often spoke or acted in a way that would be inappropriate for a Christian. His actions belied an underlying insecurity in spite of his outward confidence. Some of his impulsive actions included:
- He invited Jesus and the disciples to his house even though his mother-in-law was sick (Mark 1:29-30)
- When he saw Jesus walking on the water, He said, “Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water.” But then allowed his fear to be stronger than his faith and he began to sink. (Matthew 14:28)
- He attempted to kill the servant of the high priest when they came to arrest Jesus, not understanding that the events about to happen was God’s plan for salvation of all mankind. (John 18:10)
- When Jesus appeared to Peter and some of the other disciple while they were fishing, he plunges into the sea to swim back to shore where Jesus was. (John 21:7)
- Peter denies Jesus (just as Jesus predicted) three times showing his fear, cowardice, and lack of commitment. He even curses and swears. (Matthew 26:73-74)
- When Jesus predicts his own death, Peter pulls him aside and attempts to correct him. (Matthew 16:22)
- At the transfiguration of Jesus, Peter interrupts the discussion between Jesus, Moses and Elijah and “answered”—even though no one had asked him anything or invited him to speak! (Matthew 17:3-4)
In spite of Simon’s impulsiveness and inconsistencies, Jesus prophetically changed his name to Peter for what, by God’s grace, he would become: a rock-solid pillar in the Church and part of its foundation. We find in Acts 2, Peter is a strong preacher of the gospel that results in 3000 being saved. In Acts 4, Peter and John were arrested and the Peter that was fearful, cowardly, and uncommitted at Jesus trial is now fearless and inspired by the Holy Spirit. After Pentecost, Peter was no longer self-centered and vain. He sought to do all to the glory of God.
Who do you say I am?
It’s easy for us to assume that Peter is the rock Jesus was talking about. However, the “rock” that Jesus was referring to was the truth of what Peter had said just before Jesus changed his name. In Matthew 16:13, Jesus had asked the disciples, “Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?” The disciples give various answer and then Jesus asked the disciples, “Whom do you say I am?” In verse 16, Peter answers, “Thou are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” It is this truth on which God built and established the church. It the most basic foundational truth about which we build our spiritual beliefs as Christians. In fact, you cannot be a Christian until you first settle and answer Jesus’ question for yourself: “Who do you say I am?”
Peter didn’t build the church
Peter understood Jesus’ true identity as God had revealed it to him. It was this foundational truth that Peter took with him as he preached and played an important role in the spread of Christianity. However, it’s also important to note that Jesus said, I will build my church. It wasn’t Peter’s responsibility to build the church. Peter’s job was to tell others about Jesus and then Jesus alone holds the responsibility for the growth and expansion of the church. Peter’s job was to “go and tell.” Jesus’ job is to build the church.
Who do you say that I am? What is your answer?
As followers of Christ, We have the same job today that Peter had – to go and tell. Then we leave the rest up to God and allow Christ to build His church. We are all responsible for telling others about our Savior. But first we must settle in our hearts the answer to the question that Jesus asked the disciples. If Jesus asked you today: “Who do you say that I am?” What would be your answer?
Would Jesus’ response to your answer be “I know you believe you understand what you think I said, but I’m not sure you realize that what you heard it not what I meant” or would He say to you, like Peter: “Blessed are you, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father who is in heaven. And I also say to you that on this rock I will build My church.”
#ReadYourBible #Exodus #Matthew #Moses
Now you can enhance your Bible Reading with the Verse Mapping Template
Our Verse Mapping download is FREE and includes 6 pages: 3 pages of instructions for using the template and the 2 page template, plus the cover page. If you’re looking to go deeper into God’s Word, learn more about God and develop a stronger spiritual life, Verse Mapping will help you dig into the scriptures. As you apply God’s Word to your life, you will develop a more intimate knowledge and relationship with God.
Visit our three retail experiences:
Tee of the Week: The Greatest Valentine’s Day
On Valentine’s Day, we celebrate love and there’s no greater love than Christ who laid down His life so that we can have eternal life. From John 3:16, this design is on t-shirts, long-sleeved tees, kids tees, mugs, bags, tumblers and more. Click the link to see all the available products in this design.
Do you have an event on the calendar and need a speaker?
We’re offering 30% off our speaker fees as our gift to you if you book any 2022 event with us by December 31, 2021. Call today and use the discount code: CHRISTMAS2021.
We’re excited to be a part of your ministry and can’t wait to see you – no matter what size your event.
Visit our YouTube Channels for Christian playlists and our short animated devotionals.
Contemporary Christian Music Playlist
Southern Gospel Playlist
God, Love, and Marshmallow Wars
by Julia M. Bruce
What’s Inside God, Love, and Marshmallow Wars?
This book includes 365 daily activities and takes you on a guided journey through Biblical principles about Godly marriage that you can then apply to your marriage, as well as helping you talk through concepts that can help you develop a solid relationship. Inside you will find simple, quick activities that include:
- Scripture to memorize and meditate on
- Conversation Starters
- Concepts from the Bible on Godly marriages
- Romance Builders
- Relationship Builders
- Personal reflections
- Date ideas
- Group date ideas for you and other Christian couples
Available in hardback, paperback and ebook from Westbow Press Bookstore, Christian Book Distributors, Amazon, and Barnes & Nobel. Click the icons below to purchase from your preferred bookstore. Now also available at WalMart online.
Join the community of couples on Facebook who are committed to intentionally growing their marriage and learning how to have a marriage that honors God. Here you can post photos of the different activities as you do them, ask questions of other couples, share how God is using this book to strengthen your marriage, and grow with other Christian couples. We’ll see you in the community.
Bible Studies, Bibles, Books & More
Looking for a Bible Study, Bible, book or Christian gift? We are an affiliate with Christianbook Distributors and receive an 8% commission on any item purchased through one of our links. However, the commission never increases your cost of any item. View some of our favorite items by clicking on the logo and thank you for supporting our ministry.
Wellspring Christian Ministries receives an 8% commission on any purchased made from Christian Book Distributors through any affiliate link on this site. Your price for any item is the same as purchasing from CBD directly.