Bible Readings: April 6-12 2020


New Testament Challenge 2020

At Faith Baptist Fellowship, we Love God’s Word and Prayer. Hearing a sermon at church on Sunday mornings alone isn’t enough to be considered a healthy diet of God’s word and prayer. We strongly believe that every growing disciple of Jesus needs to be regularly hearing from God through his word and personally speaking back to God through prayer.

We are challenging everyone to read through the entire New Testament in 2020 – one chapter per day, five days per week. If regular Bible reading is not yet a habit of yours, this is a great way to get started! As always, we will provide devotional thoughts and helpful prayer points on the passages. The weekend material will prepare you for the upcoming Sunday sermon as well as provide some discussion help for Faith Groups.

We recommend you set aside at least 15-20 minutes a day for this plan and prayer. If you fall behind, just start on the current day. Try to develop the habit of reading at the same time and place. We suggest having a journal and pen for answering questions and recording your thoughts and insights. Happy Bible Reading!

Download PDF: DBR 2020 April 6-12

Monday, April 6

Read 2 Thessalonians 1:1-12

THINK: In his second letter, Paul takes special note of the Church’s growing in faith and love even in face of persecution and affliction. What does Paul state this perseverance is evidence of in v. 5? How do you respond to persecution or affliction in your life? Whose job is it to repay the evil doers who afflict us (v. 6)? When will that happen (v.7b)? Paul describes the eternal punishment received by those who don’t know God and reject the Gospel. What must we pray that God would do for us (v. 11)?
PRAY: Pray that God would give you the endurance to grow your faith in God and love for one another in spite of the trials you may experience. Thank God that he is in charge of all things and will execute His just repayment to evil doers, who have sinned against you. Pray for God to give you the strength and determination to complete the good works of faith he has prepared for you to do (see also Eph 2:10). Praise God for his Son, Jesus Christ, who will come in His glory and will grant us relief from all our afflictions. What a wonderful Day that will be.

Tuesday, April 7

Read 2 Thessalonians 2:1-17

THINK: Paul goes on to warn the Thessalonians not to be concerned if they hear that Jesus has already returned. What two things does Paul say must happen before Jesus will return (v. 3)? Warren Wiersbe states – the “man of lawlessness”, also referred to as “the Antichrist,” means both “against Christ” as well as “instead of Christ”. What do those who are perishing refuse to do (v. 10)? Speaking to the Thessalonians, what two things does Paul say saved them (v. 13). To whom does Paul appeal to comfort their hearts (v. 16-17a)?
PRAY: Pray that you would not be deceived by false words, signs or wonders, but put your faith in Scripture as your bedrock. Ask that God would increase your love of the Truth, that saving Gospel. Praise God for the mighty power of Jesus, who will defeat Satan with the mere puff of his breath. In times of trial or doubt, ask Jesus Christ and God the Father to comfort your heart that you may stand firm in your faith.

Wednesday, April 8

Read 2 Thessalonians 3:1-18

THINK: After encouraging them to stand firm, Paul requests the prayers of the Thessalonians. What two specific petitions does Paul ask for in verses 1-2? Who is the one who provides the protection (v.3)? In verse 6 Paul commands another type of “Social Distancing”, who are the Thessalonians to avoid? Why would you think this would be a good practice? Paul was an imitator of Christ Jesus. Who are we called to imitate, ultimately? What does this passage say about working?
PRAY: Pray that God would speed the spreading of the Gospel throughout the world. Pray that those sent out with the Gospel would be protected from the evil one. Pray that you would be protected from sinning and from those that are practicing disobedience. Thank God for your ability to work! Pray that you are a “happy” non grumbling worker. Pray for those that truly are unable to work at this time due to our current “Social Distancing”! That they would find comfort in how the Lord continues to provide for them through others that are able to work.

Thursday, April 9

Read Acts 19:1-41

THINK: The Spirit continues to be poured out on the Gentiles. From the ESVSB: “That they had not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit indicates they had not heard of the outpouring of the Spirit at Pentecost, and therefore they probably had not heard much of Jesus’ life and ministry, and certainly not of his death and resurrection…as followers of John they would have known his message that the Messiah would bring the Spirit.” Note p. 2125. Explain the incident with the Sons of Sceva. What was the impact of it? What caused the riot at Ephesus? What quelled the riot?
PRAY: Praise God for pouring out his Holy Spirit upon the Gentile peoples. Ask God to continue to move by his Spirit until every tribe and language group has a worshipping, witnessing church. Ask God to fill you today with his Spirit, so that you can testify to others of his grace and life-changing power. Rejoice in prayer that “greater is he that is in you than he that is in the world.”

Friday, April 10

Read 1 Corinthians 1:1-31

THINK: Ponder for a moment the fact that if you call upon the name of the Lord, you are a “sanctified saint” (v. 2). Take every single phrase of vv. 7-9 to heart! Make them your own! What trouble is Paul confronting in the church at Corinth? What would “empty” the power of the cross? Why is the word of the cross folly to some? Power to others? What two kinds of wisdom are being contrasted in vv. 20-25? Who is the very heart of true wisdom? Memorize v. 25 and think deeply about its implications. Why should our only boast be in the Lord?
PRAY: As this letter opens, and knowing the journey that lies ahead (the troubles and controversies of the church at Corinth), bask in the wonder of the riches here in chapter 1, the riches of the cross and of wisdom in Christ, and pray a prayer of worship and thanksgiving. Ask God to free you from the lure of worldly wisdom; ask for discernment to detect when the wisdom of the world is drawing you in. Pray that our children and youth would grow to discern the difference between the two wisdoms profiled here (and that we ALL would have such discernment)! Pray for the current “online youth group.”

Weekend, April 11-12

Read Genesis 22 and John 11:1-44   Easter!

  If you’ve fallen behind this week, consider using these extra days to catch up. You can also prepare your heart and mind for this Sunday’s worship service. Read the planned sermon text above and the thoughts below in advance of Sunday morning’s message. If you are in a Faith Group, consider discussing the questions below together.  
  THINK: Last week we saw how the events of Genesis 22 were a picture of the gospel, a prophetic narrative. Jehovah Jireh, God our Provider, has provided a “ram in the thicket” and the name of that Lamb of God is Jesus Christ, God the Son! How would you tie together “I am the resurrection and the life” with the events on Mount Moriah? How would you apply this Easter hope to our present circumstance with the Covid-19 crisis?  
  PRAY: Pray for Pastors Dana and Jayson as they proclaim our Easter hope in Christ to our online congregation! Pray for our worship teams as they focus our hearts and minds on Christ without some of the usual “extras” of Easter music (like our marvelous choir). Pray for an opportunity to share your Easter hope with someone in need this week, whether a family member, friend, co-worker, neighbor, or another person God brings in your path. Thank God for the resurrection hope of Jesus!  
  FAITH GROUP: We sincerely hope that in these “distanced” days your FG is finding ways to connect, and especially that you are able to encourage one another in this celebration of Easter! Our Easter celebration may be different this year, but the truth of EASTER is the same—up from the grave Jesus arose!

How is the hope of Easter helping you cope with the dynamics of the current crisis? What steps are you taking to “preach the gospel to yourself” and to your family members during this unusual time? How can you make a difference in the lives of others during this Covid-19 crisis? Pray for any special needs you are aware of in your Faith Group, our church, or your sphere of influence.