Romans 10:8-17

8 But what does it say? “The word is near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart,” that is, the message concerning faith that we proclaim: 9 If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. 11 As Scripture says, “Anyone who believes in him will never be put to shame.” 12 For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile—the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, 13 for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

14 How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? 15 And how can anyone preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!”

16 But not all the Israelites accepted the good news. For Isaiah says, “Lord, who has believed our message?” 17 Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ.

Lord Jesus, I confess that I believe! You are the author of life, the author of our faith and the author of our salvation. Come, Author, and write Your Word on the tablet of my heart. Fill my heart with faith. Purify my lips. Give me boldness to declare the Gospel. You are not ashamed to call us Your brothers and sisters; let me never be ashamed to call You my Lord. May the prayer of Isaiah be my prayer as well: “Here am I. Send me!”

Live Eagle Hatching

Romans 5:1-5

Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,

through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God.

Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance;

perseverance, character; and character, hope.

And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.

Peace with God! The war is won! Victory is Yours, O God, through Jesus Christ. I am the reward of Your victory. I am the spoil of war! I am now reconciled to You and holy in Your sight, “without blemish and free from accusation.” What grace is mine in Christ, through His blood and resurrection! Hallelujah!

Romans 3:10-18

10 As it is written:

“There is no one righteous, not even one;
11     there is no one who understands;
    there is no one who seeks God.
12 All have turned away,
    they have together become worthless;
there is no one who does good,
    not even one.”
13 “Their throats are open graves;
    their tongues practice deceit.”
“The poison of vipers is on their lips.”
14     “Their mouths are full of cursing and bitterness.”
15 “Their feet are swift to shed blood;
16     ruin and misery mark their ways,
17 and the way of peace they do not know.”
18     “There is no fear of God before their eyes.”

O Lord, we try so hard to follow You, but the compass of the human heart is faulty, and we so easily veer off course. Our words are condemning and merciless, our actions are harmful, and the cruel tendencies within us — the jealousy, bitterness and ingratitude — eat at us like poison. There is only one condition at the heart of our problem, and that is sin. There is only one Person Who is capable of our rescue, and that is You. Come, Lord Jesus, and save us from ourselves.

Luke 2:6-20

While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born,

 and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.

And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night.

 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified.

 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people.

 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.

12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,

14 “Glory to God in the highest heaven,
and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”

15 When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

16 So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger.

17 When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child,

 18 and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them.

19 But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.

20 The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.

Lord, I cannot comprehend that You, the Creator of the universe, took on flesh and were born of a peasant girl. You, the One who spoke galaxies into existence, became a speechless newborn baby. You, the One who gave the stars their light, veiled Your own glory and slipped unnoticed into the human race. You, the One who clothed all of nature in its boundless beauty and order, came to us wrapped in rags and lying in a feeding trough. The miracle of Your incarnation is all too unexpected, too mysterious, too holy for me to understand. I can only follow the shepherds to the manger and bow in astonishment and thanksgiving, glorifying and praising You for all that I have heard and seen.

 

Romans 2:29

(Romans 2:29) No, a person is a Jew who is one inwardly; and circumcision is circumcision of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the written code. Such a person’s praise is not from other people, but from God.

Lord, put Your mark on my heart – the sign that You have staked Your claim to my life. Cut away everything that keeps me from following You. You cannot be fooled by the outward signs of religion; for You do not look at the outward appearance. You look at the heart. As circumcision was the physical sign of Your covenant with Abraham, so let the circumcision of my heart be the sign of Your covenant with me.

Romans 2:4

Or do you show contempt for the riches of his kindness, forbearance and patience, not realizing that God’s kindness is intended to lead you to repentance?

 I praise You, Lord, for Your merciful kindness and love. More frightening than the thought of letting go of You is the thought of You letting go of me, of relinquishing me to the consequences of my sin. You could have abandoned me. But instead You led me to repentance. O God, may I never take Your kindness for granted!

Romans 1:18-24

The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness, 19 since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. 20 For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.

21 For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles.

24 Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another.

O Lord my Creator, the whole earth is full of Your glory. I choose this day to glorify You and to give You thanks. I will worship You and serve You as my God. I will look to You, rather than my own mind, for wisdom. I will hold on to Your Word of truth and resist anything that raises itself up against the gospel. I will flee anarchy and its degradation: a darkened heart, shameful lusts, a depraved mind, the suppression of truth and the worship of lies. I will stop making excuses and instead seek Your face, O God.

 

Romans 1:16

For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile.

 

Lord, I believe! This faith first to last is a faith in the One Who is the Beginning and the End. Your gospel is indeed the best news in the world. It is the headline imprinted on every saved heart. Knowing, seeing, believing what You have done for us—that You have purchased us from a sure death with Your own life—how can we keep silent? O Lord, open our mouths and create praise on our lip. Empower us to tell the world the Good News of Your mercy.

Romans 4:7-8

“Blessed are those
    whose transgressions are forgiven,
    whose sins are covered.
Blessed is the one
    whose sin the Lord will never count against them.”

Out of the hopelessness of death, You bring new life. Out of the prison of sin, You bring redemption. Out of the weakness of human flesh, You bring victory. All by grace. All by faith. And that is all You are looking for from us – faith. Not great accomplishments, not self-righteousness, not pedigree but simple faith – faith that brings You glory, faith that perseveres in spite of adversity, faith no larger than a mustard seed that grows into the tree of righteousness, and the fruit of righteousness is peace with You. Strengthen my faith, Lord, so that I may move deeply into the circle of life in Christ from faith to faith, from strength to strength, and from glory to glory.