January Scripture Reading and Devotion
PASTOR BERNIE SAMPLES
Topic: A Fresh Start – God’s Way
January 1st) Romans 12:3, Ephesians 2:8, 2 Timothy 1:5-7 As a believer v5 says that you have genuine God-kind of faith in your Born Again spirit. Verse 7 says don’t let fear snuff out your faith. Verse 6 tells you how to keep your faith hot and active. “Stir up the gift of God that is in you.” The best way to begin to stir the faith that is in you is to begin to talk about it and give praise and thanksgiving to the Lord for the faith that is in you.
Faith Confession: Father, I want to thank You that I am a new creature in Christ. I have Your DNA – Your Divine Nature and Ability in my spirit. By faith I will do everything that You have for me to do this year. It will be the greatest year of my life so far.
January 2nd) Philemon 6 According to this verse this is one way to stir up the faith that God has given you. Notice this says for your faith to be effective you need to talk about every good thing (not all your faults, your weaknesses and what you can’t do) which is in you because Jesus lives in you. For the next few days we are going to talk about some of those good things that Jesus put in you when you were Born Again.
Faith Confession: I make the quality decision today that this year is a new year and I WILL watch what I say. I am NOT a loser, but I am a WINNER in Christ. I am NOT poor and broke but I am prosperous and always have MORE than enough because I am a child of the King. I am NOT sick and always need healing. I WAS healed by the stripes of Jesus and I will walk in it this year.
January 3rd) John 3:3-8 First things first. To acknowledge every good thing that is in you because of Jesus you must be Born Again. Verse 3 says you can’t see or understand spiritual things until you are Born Again. Verse 6 says you must have a spiritual rebirth. Verse 8 Jesus said you can’t see the wind you can only see what it does. You can see a flag waving, trash or leaves blowing across the ground, and tree branches moving as the result of blowing wind. The New Birth is like this. You can’t see inside a person’s spirit, but when a person receives the life and nature of Jesus, you will see a change in their words and their actions. Instead of hating people, they will love them. Instead of wanting to cuss all the time, they will begin to clean up their speech. Instead of wanting to drink and party, they’ll want to go to church.
Faith Confession: Jesus said you can judge a tree by its fruit. I will examine myself today and every day and see if I am living like a Christian or like an unsaved person. Do people see a change in my behavior?
January 4th) Just in case you are not sure if you are Born Again read Romans 10:9, 10 and do what it says. Christians call this the sinner’s prayer or a prayer of salvation. This is how you are Born Again. Now if you have never said this or even if you have, it is a good thing to make this confession of faith in the Lord Jesus as your Lord and Savior to stir your faith.
Faith Confession: According to Romans 10:9 I confess with my mouth that Jesus is Lord. I believe in my heart that God raised Jesus from the dead therefore I am saved. Verse 10 For with my heart I believe I am right with God and with my mouth I make my confession unto salvation. This means I am saved! I am a Born Again child of God.
January 5th) Remember that we are acknowledging every good thing that is in us because we are Born Again. 2 Corinthians 5:17-21 Read these verses out loud several times and let them sink in. Particularly notice verses 17, 18, and 21.
Faith Confession: I am not just an old sinner saved by grace. I WAS an old sinner, but I have been saved by grace. My old nature has passed away. I am brand new on the inside with God’s nature. He took all of my sin and gave me His righteousness. Hallelujah! Thank You Jesus for giving me a new start in life.
January 6th) Romans 5:5 The love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Ghost who is in us. This is part of the nature of God that we now have. 1 John 3:14-16 This is what Jesus said about the New Birth. We no longer hate but we love because we have God’s divine love nature and ability to love like Jesus loved when He walked the earth.
Faith Confession: I know that I am passed from death to life because I love people. I am always willing to go out of my way to be a blessing to everyone I can.
January 7th) Galatians 2:20 We are still talking about every good thing that is in us in Christ Jesus. “… I live by the faith of the Son of God who loved me and gave Himself for me.” When we are Born Again, we have Jesus’ faith in our hearts so why should we ever worry that our faith isn’t good enough. For our faith to fail that would mean that Jesus’ faith would have to fail and Jesus NEVER fails!
Faith Confession: ___________________ (put your name here) died with Christ. The new me in Christ still lives. I live by the faith of the Son of God. I can do anything and everything that God wants me to do because I have His faith to do it.
January 8th) 1 Corinthians 1:30 “But of Him are you in Christ Jesus, who of God has become our wisdom …” 1 Corinthians 2:16 “… but we have the mind of Christ.” There is a difference between your brain and your natural mind and human wisdom as compared to the mind of Christ which is in your spirit. We are still talking about every good thing that is in us in Christ Jesus. You must begin to look to your heart and not your head only when facing the difficult decisions in life.
Faith Confession: I will train myself to quit saying “I don’t know what to do”, “I’m too stupid”, “I don’t have a clue” and other put down on yourself phrases. When challenged I will say “I have the mind of Christ and the wisdom of God in my heart and I will always know what to do in every situation in life.
January 9th) Philippians 4:13 In this verse Christ isn’t Jesus’ last name, but this comes from the Greek word “Christos” which means “The Anointed One and His Anointing”. A verse that I like use in conjunction with this one is I John 4:4 “… greater is He (the Anointed One and His Anointing) that is in me, than He that is in the world.”
Faith Confession: Nothing is impossible to me because I can do all things through the Anointed One and His Anointing that’s in me. Greater is Jesus who is in me than the devil who is in the world.
January 10th) Mark 16:17-18 “And these signs shall follow them that believe (this is talking about us because we are believers): In Jesus Name … Verse 18 “… they shall lay hands on the sick (when we do, the Anointed One and His Anointing flows through our hands into the sick), and they shall recover.”
Faith Confession: Because the Anointed One and His Anointing lives in me, when I lay hands on the sick, His Anointing flows through my hands into the sick person’s body and they do recover. Remember, this is confessing from Philemon 6 “Every good thing that is in you in Christ Jesus.”
January 11th) Jeremiah 29:11-13 It doesn’t make any difference how good or how bad your past has been, Jesus has a good plan for your life but it is up to you how much of it will come to pass. In every promise of the Bible there is the God part and the man part. God’s part here is that He has the plan. Your part is to commit to a season of prayer with your journal open, your Bible open and your heart open to hear what He has to say about His plan for your life.
Faith Confession: I am a new creature in Christ. My old life has passed away. My new life has begun. Starting today I will discipline myself to spend quiet time in private with my Bible, my journal and my heart open to find out God’s plan and purpose for my life.
January 12th) John 2:5 “… whatsoever He saith unto you, do it.” These simple words from the lips of Mary, the mother of Jesus to His servants at this marriage feast opened the door for a great miracle when they obeyed these instructions. Zechariah 4:10 NLT “Do not despise the small beginning, for the eyes of the Lord rejoice to see the work begin …” Most of the time, the first step the Lord wants to show you will be simple and easy. He just wants you to learn to do what He puts in your heart.
Faith Confession: I purpose every day to do what I know to do that is in line with the Word of God. No matter how simple it may seem. I will obey the Holy Spirit speaking to my heart.
January 13th) John 10:1-5, 27 When you gave your heart to Jesus, He became your Shepherd and you became His sheep. His job is to lead you, guide you, and feed you to make sure that you win in life. Your job is to obey what He speaks to your heart and run from wrong inclinations and things that violate the Word of God that you know.
Faith Confession: Jesus is my Shepherd and I am His sheep. I know His voice and I follow Him. I will not listen to the voice of the stranger. I will flee from the voice of the stranger (that is from everything that is in violation of the Word of God).
January 14th) 1 Corinthians 2:9-12 These verses tell us that as we take the time to feed our spirits on the Word of God and fellowship with the Holy Spirit, we will see and know things straight from Heaven that our minds would never learn from books.
Faith Confession: I am growing spiritually and I am training myself to live out of my spirit instead of out of my head all the time.
January 15th) James 1:22 Paraphrased what this verse says is “It is not what you hear and know, it is what you know and do that gets results.” For the next few days I am going to look at examples of stories that you have probably heard many times. I will point out the importance of the God part and the man part according to James 1:22 let’s use this definition for faith. Faith is simply acting on the Word or as James says, “Being a doer of the Word and not a hearer only.”
Faith Confession: I am learning more from the Bible every day and besides that, I am putting into practice and being a doer of the Word and not a hearer only.
January 16th) Genesis 2:15-17, 3:17 This is the best example I of in the Bible of a man not being a doer of the Word that God spoke to him. It is so simple, God said, “Don’t eat the fruit of that tree or you will surely die.” Adam had many trees he could eat fruit from but he chose to disobey and eat the one fruit that God said not to. The result was the human race became spiritually dead and missed out on the plan that God had for His blessing.
Faith Confession: I won’t live like Adam lived. I will live like Jesus lived. I will obey God’s Word and follow His plan for my life and be blessed.
January 17th) Hebrews 11:7 Of course, we are all familiar with Noah building the Ark and saving his family, who became the only survivors of the human race from the flood that covered the entire earth. Just think of the God part and the man part. If Noah had not acted on the Word and followed God’s plan and spent 120 years building the Ark, then God would have found someone else who obeyed. A question for you to think about, “Will you do what God puts in your heart or will He have to find someone else?”
Faith Confession: I will not despise the day of small beginnings. Jesus will not have to find somebody else to do what He has planned for me to do. I will do all that I know to do.
January 18th) Hebrews 11:8, 9 Of course we know that the Bible calls Abraham the Father of our Faith. Notice verse 8 Abraham had a choice to obey or ignore what God told him to do. At the
Word that God spoke to him, he left his home and went to a new land that God had purposed to fulfill His plan for Abraham’s life. Remember Abraham was a human being just like you and me. It took faith to leave everything and follow the plan of God.
Faith Confession: I am a person of faith. I am a believer. I will always obey the voice of the Good Shepherd and follow His plan step by step because He knows where we are going.
January 19th) Hebrews 6:11-15 These verses have always given me faith to follow the plan of God. Notice verse 12 “To be followers of them who through faith and patience inherit the promises.” In the fall of 1992 Jesus put into my wife and my heart to pioneer a new church in Martinsville, Indiana. After one year He had me leave my career as a truck driver to be in full time service as a pastor to His people. Then in 2005 He had us leave Indiana to move 2000 miles away to California to take over the pastorate of an existing church. This reminds me of Abraham leaving his home to follow the plan of God. A multitude of people’s lives were changed for the better in Indiana and now in California. We had a choice and we chose to follow what Jesus put into our hearts. Remember you always have a choice to follow His plan or do nothing.
Faith Confession: I purpose to always follow those who through faith and patience inherit the promises. I am a doer of the Word and not a hearer only.
January 20th) Hebrews 12:1, 2 These verses tell us that there is sacrifice required on our part to follow the plan of God. If we are going to live a serious Christian life we must choose to use our time wisely. We must choose to say “no” to sin and “yes” to living right in the eyes of God. Verse 2 says this to me, “To keep my eyes on Jesus is to keep my eyes on the Word. To keep my eyes on the Word is to keep my eyes on Jesus.” As you step out in faith in obedience to what Jesus tells you to do, you must keep your eyes on Him through His Word to make it through the tough times. But you can finish the race and fulfill what He has told you to do.
Faith Confession: I am a believer. I am a person of faith and not of fear. I walk in the wisdom of God about how to spend my time and live a productive Christian life. Anything that Jesus tells me is a time stealer, I will lay aside and run my race with faith and patience knowing that Jesus is the author and finisher of my faith. I finish what I start in Jesus Name.
January 21st) Deuteronomy 30 this entire chapter is excellent instruction on how to live our Christian life. Notice verses 11-14 that God says over and over to hear His Word that He puts in your heart and do it. Verse 19 is the clincher. He gives us the choice to live a life of blessing or cursing. I don’t know about you, but I made the choice years ago to follow His plan and obey His Word and live in His blessings.
Faith Confession: Choices have consequences. I know that my life won’t end in success or failure by chance, but by choice. As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord and follow every step of His plan for our lives.
January 22nd) James 3:1-8 When I was first Born Again one of the first things the Lord did in my life was to teach me the importance of the words that came out of my mouth. Look at verse 2 paraphrased, “If you watch what you say, you can control the health of your body.” Verse 6 The devil wants to use your words to cause you to have a life of hell on earth. Verse 8 You cannot control your words on your own. It takes the help of the Holy Spirit and the Word of God renewing your mind.
For the remainder of the month we are going to study scriptures that will train you how to speak the language of faith.
Faith Confession: Just like a horse is controlled by a bit in its mouth, I will learn the language of faith and control my life by controlling my tongue.
January 23rd) Proverbs 12:18 “There is one that speaketh like the piercings of a sword: but the tongue of the wise promotes health.” Remember what James said? Your tongue can help control your body. We are not talking about mind over matter or just being positive, but we are talking about Bible spiritual laws that God set into place for our faith to be the most effective. The Lord told me years ago that faith doesn’t deny things, faith changes things.
Faith Confession: I know that sickness and disease is real. If I got sick I would go to the doctor and take medicine or whatever else he told me to do, but the main thing I will train myself to do is speak words of healing and health from the Bible.
January 24th) Proverbs 10:19 “In the multitude of words there wanteth not sin: but he that refraineth his lips is wise.” This is talking about how you talk about people, yourself, your family, your job, your finances, your health, or anything else. I say it this way, “Show me a person that talks a lot, and I’ll show you a person who sins a lot with his words.”
Faith Confession: Starting today, I am going to listen to the words that I speak. I will stop and think before I talk. While in conversation with others, if there is silence that doesn’t mean have to start talking.
January 25th) Ephesians 4:29 “Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace to the hearers.” Our words need to build up and not tear down ourselves or others. Our words need to minister grace. This means God’s favor and God’s blessing to all those who hear us. The one who hears your words the most is you!
Faith Confession: I will guard myself to speak words that bring the favor of God, the blessing of God, the healing of God into my life and to everyone who hears me.
January 26th) Proverbs 18:21 “Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it, shall eat the fruit thereof.” The word “power” means “authority”. You have authority about what goes on in your realm of influence by the words that you speak. Death and life doesn’t just mean physically, living or dying, but your words can bring death into a relationship, or your finances, or on your job, or bring life, which signifies the blessing of God for thriving and flourishing.
Faith Confession: As a believer I know that my words will determine how good or how bad my health, my relationships, my finances, and everything else turns out in my life. I choose to enjoy all that God has for me by guarding what I say.
January 27th) Mark 11:22-23 Verse 22 literally says, “Have the faith of God.” To me this means, use YOUR faith like God used His faith in Genesis when He created everything. When you read Genesis 1 you will see that the Bible records over and over again, “AND GOD SAID, AND SO IT WAS …” In verse 23 Jesus said, “WHOSOEVER shall say”. I wrote in my Bible, “WHOSOEVER means me!”
Faith Confession: I can use my faith like God used His faith. I will say what I want, or need, not what I currently have.
January 28th) Mark 11:22-23 In verse 23 notice that Jesus said, “WHOSOEVER shall SAY … shall believe that those things which he SAITH shall come to pass; He shall have whatsoever HE SAITH.” So Jesus said three times your faith works by what you say. The mountain refers to the big problems or little ones in your life. Jesus said, “You will have what you say.” Instead of letting life overwhelm you, start overwhelming life with words of faith.
Faith Confession: Mountain of ____________________ (you fill in the blank of what your problem is). I will overcome you in Jesus Name. You will not defeat me or control me anymore. You are getting smaller and smaller in Jesus Name.
January 29th) Mark 11:22-24 In verse 23 Jesus said, We will have what we say and in verse 24 we can have what we pray if we watch what we say. The verses 23 and 24 tell us the principal of the Prayer of Faith. So what we say in our everyday conversation will determine the effectiveness of our prayer life. Always remember we won’t have what we pray, if we don’t watch what we say!
Faith Confession: I receive what I pray because I watch what I say every day.
January 30th) Proverbs 21:23 “Whoso keepeth his mouth and his tongue keepeth his soul from troubles.” Many times all you have to do is look in the mirror one inch below your nose to see where trouble comes from. Everything we have taught the last few days has revolved around the words that you speak. No matter what things look like, I have trained myself to always say “I am great” when people ask me how I am doing. I never speak poverty, I always speak abundance. I never speak sickness, I always speak health. I never speak defeat, I always speak winning. How about You?
Faith Confession: I can’t lose for winning! If it weren’t for good blessings, I’d have no blessings at all. When it rains, it pours blessings on my life. Because God is for me, it makes no difference who or what is against me because God and I are more than enough.
January 31st) 3 John 2 “Beloved, I pray above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health even as thy soul prospers.” Prosper means “to cause to succeed, especially economic success; flourish, thrive”. “Be in health” means to live in divine health and receive healing if you need it. This is the will of God.
Faith Confession: Because I am doing my best to follow God’s plan for my life, I am financially successful and living in divine health.