Today we are reading Matthew 26. In this chapter we read about Jesus and His disciples on the night He was betrayed. The keyword for this chapter is “a-day-mo-ne-o”. The definition is “to be troubled, to be distressed. It implies a restless distracted shrinking from some trouble or thought of trouble which nevertheless cannot be escaped.” “And taking with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, he began to be sorrowful and troubled.” Matthew‬ ‭26:37‬ ‭ESV‬‬ As you read this definition, what memories come to mind? When you are troubled what do you do for comfort? Often when I am troubled it is for someone else. Jesus was troubled for us. In Him we have peace.  Blessings, Pastor Tim

Today we are reading Matthew 25. In this chapter we continue to read about Jesus teaching His disciples about the End Times. The keyword for this chapter is “poi-e-o”. The definition is “to do”. “And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’ Then he will answer them, saying, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.’”
‭‭Matthew‬ ‭25:40, 45‬ ‭ESV‬‬ In this passage Jesus seems to be saying that our salvation is based on what we do.  However, in other passages we find that very clear teaching we are saved by grace. So how is our faith connected to what we do?  What do you do because you are a Christian? How does what you do impact those who benefit?  What will you do today?  Pastor Tim

Today we are reading Matthew 24. In this chapter we read about Jesus teaching His disciples about the End Times. The keyword for this chapter is “e-toi-mos”. The definition is “ready”. “Therefore you also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.” Matthew‬ ‭24:44‬ ‭ESV‬‬ Have you ever been late for an appointment or event? What happened? Why were you late. Sometimes I have been late when I was working hard on something and because I was focused on that other thing I was not ready. Jesus tells us we must be ready for His return. This means we must continue doing the work our Lord has called us to do and eagerly await His coming. God bless in your service to Him.  Pastor Tim

Today we are reading Matthew 23. In this chapter Jesus pronounces judgement on the hypocritical leaders of the Jews. The keyword for this chapter is “ta-pei-no-o”. The definition is “to make low, to humble”. “Whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted.”
‭‭Matthew‬ ‭23:12‬ ‭ESV‬‬ This concept is very important for Christians. Humility wins the day by allowing for the possibility of a relationship. Arrogance closes doors and pushes people away. What kind of people do you enjoy being around?  Do you enjoy someone who is always talking about how great they are? God does not. God will humble the one who exalts himself. God will exalt the one who humbles himself. May God exalt you. Pastor Tim

Today we are reading Matthew 22. In this chapter we read about the various religious groups that attempt to discredit Jesus. The keyword for this chapter is “fi-mo-o”. The definition is “to put to silence, to muzzle”.

“”But when the king came in to look at the guests, he saw there a man who had no wedding garment. And he said to him, ‘Friend, how did you get in here without a wedding garment?’ And he was speechless.” “But when the Pharisees heard that he had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together. And one of them, a lawyer, asked him a question to test him.” “And no one was able to answer him a word, nor from that day did anyone dare to ask him any more questions.” Matthew‬ ‭22:11-12, 34-35, 46‬ ‭ESV‬‬ When Jesus encounters evil, evil is silenced. What enemies of Jesus are you hearing from? What are they saying? May God silence the liars and calm your soul.  Pastor Tim

Today we are reading Matthew 21. In this chapter we read about Jesus entering Jerusalem. The keyword for this chapter is “poi-e-o”. The definition is “to make, to do, to act rightly, to do well, to produce, to bear”. “Therefore I tell you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people producing its fruits.” Matthew‬ ‭21:43‬ ‭ESV‬‬ In this passage Jesus reprimands the religious leaders for being outwardly religious but inwardly hypocritical. The practice of their religion did not include authentic action. What does your faith produce? If people were to search for evidence of your faith in Jesus, what would they find?  Let’s keep in mind that we are not saved because of what we produce spiritually. On the other hand, “faith without works is dead”. May God in you produce beautiful and abundant fruit! Pastor Tim3

Today we are reading Matthew 20. In this chapter we read about the parable of the Workers in the Vineyard. The chapter concludes with a beautiful demonstration of Jesus’ love. The keyword for this chapter is “splank-nid-zo-mai”. The definition is “to be moved with compassion, to be inwardly moved”. “And behold, there were two blind men sitting by the roadside, and when they heard that Jesus was passing by, they cried out, “Lord, have mercy on us, Son of David!” The crowd rebuked them, telling them to be silent, but they cried out all the more, “Lord, have mercy on us, Son of David!” And stopping, Jesus called them and said, “What do you want me to do for you?” They said to him, “Lord, let our eyes be opened.” And Jesus in pity touched their eyes, and immediately they recovered their sight and followed him.” Matthew‬ ‭20:30-34‬ ‭ESV‬‬ What is it that stirs your heart to pity? Recently we served the homeless of Sacramento and I was deeply moved with pity.  One man told me he had come straight from prison. A young woman told me she had three daughters living on the street with her. There were young and old, men and women all struggling every day to stay alive.  My heart was filled with pity. Who do you feel pity for? What action does your pity demand? May the Holy Spirit empower you to move beyond pity to serving. Pastor Tim

Today we are reading Matthew 19. In this chapter Jesus is challenged about issues concerning marriage. The keyword for this chapter is “a-po-lu-o”. The definition is “to release, to divorce”.

“And Pharisees came up to him and tested him by asking, “Is it lawful to divorce one’s wife for any cause?”

He said to them, “Because of your hardness of heart Moses allowed you to divorce your wives, but from the beginning it was not so. And I say to you: whoever divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another, commits adultery.”” Matthew‬ ‭19:3, 8-9‬ ‭ESV‬‬ Divorce is very common in our modern culture. As a concession to their hard hearts Moses permitted Israelites to give their spouse a certificate of divorce which in fact protected the wife from accusations and punishment for adultery. What are some of the reasons you have heard for divorce?  How do they compare with the standard Jesus teaches? What is the overarching idea that Jesus is teaching concerning marriage and divorce? May God bless you with His unconditional love for your spouse!  Pastor Tim

Today we are reading Matthew 18. In this chapter we read about about forgiveness and reconciliation. The keyword for this chapter is “ker-dai-no”. The definition is “to win, to gain”. “”If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother.” Matthew‬ ‭18:15‬ ‭ESV‬‬ As you read this verse, what comes to mind? Jesus is calling us to go and make things right with the one who has sinned against you. I really like the expression “you have gained/won your brother”. The opposite is tragic.  If we do not make things right we lose our brother.  Perhaps, in your hurt or anger, losing them doesn’t sound so bad.  However, Jesus calls us to love our brother and pray for those who persecute us. God wants us to live in peace and harmony.  In order to do that we have to win our brother.  May God bless you to love enough to win!  Pastor Tim

Today we are reading Matthew 17. In this chapter we read about Jesus’ Transfiguration and other events as He concludes His Galilean Ministry. The keyword for this chapter is “lu-pe-o”. The definition is “to cause pain, to grieve; to become sad, sorrowful, distressed.” “As they were gathering in Galilee, Jesus said to them, “The Son of Man is about to be delivered into the hands of men, and they will kill him, and he will be raised on the third day.” And they were greatly distressed.” Matthew‬ ‭17:22-23‬ ‭ESV‬‬ Jesus has described to His disciples that He must die and because of this they are greatly distressed. What is it that distresses you?  How does your faith in Jesus comfort you when you are distressed? May God give you relief from the things which distress you in Jesus’ name.  Pastor Tim