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Revelation: Your Future Home

When the tribulation is finished, God’s wrath and judgment will be over, and Jesus Christ will return to the earth.

Revelation 19 describes this second coming of Jesus, the culmination of the gospel. After that will come the binding of Satan and the millennium, where Jesus will set up His kingdom on earth, ruling and reigning for 1,000 years. Then there will be one final uprising that will be quelled, the great white throne judgment of unbelievers, and, finally, the eternal state.

The eternal state is the end of the end, the ultimate phase. Heaven and earth will be destroyed, and new ones will take their place, with the capital city of New Jerusalem. Revelation 21-22 describes it: That which is ruined will be restored. The curse of sin will be removed, and there will be no more sorrow, tears, pain, or death. Most importantly, you’ll be with God forever.

I hope that surveying the New Testament, especially this last book, has not only whetted your appetite to the riches of God’s Word but also awakened you to the reality of your future home—eternity with the Lord.


Think It Through

Read Revelation 19:11-16. What will Jesus’ second coming be like?

Read Revelation 21-22. What about your eternal home most inspires and motivates you here on earth?

Reflect on the past thirty days. What have you learned about God’s Word? About the New Testament? What are the biggest lessons you’ll take with you into the future?


Listen and Learn

When the Antichrist is revealed during the Great Tribulation, at first, he will be seen as a peacemaker. But later he will set himself up to be worshiped. Find out more as Skip continues his short flight over Revelation.
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Land and Explore

Forever is a long time, so it makes sense that you understand and prepare for it. To learn more about heaven and eternity, check out Pastor Skip’s series From the Edge of Eternity.
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A Word of Encouragement

Revelation has a special blessing for its readers: “Blessed [or happy] is he who keeps the words of the prophecy of this book” (Revelation 22:7). How do you keep the book of Revelation? By choosing to live in the light of eternity, rather than the temporal world. And what’s the blessing? In seeing Jesus clearly, and in reading the end of the story and knowing He wins.

Prayer

Lord, thank You for the last thirty days I’ve spent in the New Testament, and thank You that I know how the story ends. I pray by Your grace that I would continue to immerse myself in Your Word, and that by so doing I would continually choose to live not for this world, but for eternity.

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If you enjoyed today’s lesson, don’t keep it all to yourself—tell your friends and followers. Share the images below on social media, and make sure to use the hashtag #30k30daychallenge.

Today’s Resource

Stay connected to Pastor Skip and God’s Word through teaching series, books, devotionals, and more at connectwithskip.com.
Visit Skip’s Website

Revelation: What’s in Store

Written by the apostle John, Revelation is a book of prophecy that describes what will happen in the end times. But Revelation isn’t just meant to be a bunch of revelations about the future; it’s mainly the revelation of one particular person: Jesus Christ.

Revelation 1:19 gives us the outline of the book: “Write the things which you have seen, and the things which are, and the things which will take place after this.” The vision of Jesus that John had in chapter 1 is “the things which you have seen.” “The things which are” refers to John writing to seven real-life churches in chapters 2-3. And then “the things which will take place after this” is chapters 4-22.

More specifically, Revelation 6-18 and part of 19 describes the tribulation period on the earth, when, after the rapture, God will judge a Christ-rejecting world through three sets of intense judgments: seven seals, seven trumpets, and seven bowls. At the end of the tribulation, which will be the worst period of history mankind has ever seen, Jesus will return.


Think It Through

Read Isaiah 2:12; 13:6-9; Jeremiah 30:7; Daniel 12:1; Joel 1:15; 2:1-11; Zephaniah 1:15; Matthew 24:21-22; and 1 Thessalonians 5:2-3. What are some of the characteristics of the tribulation, also called the day of the Lord?

To what does Revelation 12:1-5 refer? Compare and contrast it to the prophecy concerning Jesus in Genesis 3:15.

Jesus Christ is not just the main subject of Revelation, but of the whole Bible. How does Revelation 13:8 reveal this truth?


Listen and Learn

In Revelation, Jesus addressed seven churches about their works, both good and bad. In a quick flight over this book, Skip shows us there are historical and timeless applications for Jesus’ statements.
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Land and Explore

If you’re interested in learning more about the book of Revelation, download Pastor Skip’s free fourteen-message series about the end times called What’s Next?
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A Word of Encouragement

The word revelation means to take the veil off or to make something clear, and this is the idea I want you to get in your mind about this book. A lot of people think Revelation is shrouded in mystery and hard to understand. But it’s not—it’s meant to clearly reveal Jesus as the glorified Judge of all the earth and the coming King.

Prayer

Father, thank You for the revelation of Jesus Christ as revealed in this book. Thank You that even though this world is only going to get worse, eventually it will all lead to Jesus returning to this earth. Help me to keep my eyes on You in the meantime.

Share It

If you enjoyed today’s lesson, don’t keep it all to yourself—tell your friends and followers. Share the images below on social media, and make sure to use the hashtag #30k30daychallenge.

Today’s Resource

Check out Israel: Learning from the Land, a documentary about Israel’s history and role in the end times that also features on-site teachings from Pastor Skip.
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If you go into just anybody’s home, you will likely see pictures in frames hanging on the walls. The pictures you see are likely members of the family or landscapes or maybe even religious pictures. Most people still rely on a trusty nail to hold their pictures on the wall. Why? Because a nail won’t break and will hold up the picture frames securely in place. If you use something else like a thumbtack or tape, chances are it won’t hold and the picture frame will fall. Jesus Christ is the nail that holds everything in place and without that nail, everything falls apart as evidence to what is happening in America today.

In this last passage that closes out Chapter 3 of John’s Gospel, John, the disciple (or John The Baptist depending on whose viewpoint you want to take), makes this point abundantly clear and that is that Jesus Christ is the nail that holds everything in place and that He is the nail that we need to rely on. Turn in your Bibles to John Chapter 3 and verses 31 to 36. As always, I’ve included the text link and audio for the chapter so you can follow along but before we get started, let’s pray…

Father,

Thank You for Your Word that brings truth and light into our lives for those of us willing to receive it. As we look at these last six verses in Chapter 3 of John, Father let this truth sink in that Jesus Christ is the nail that holds everything in place and that He is the only one that we need to rely on and nobody or nothing else but Him. And now Lord, our hearts and minds are open to hear what You have to say. Speak Lord, for your servants are listening in Jesus’s name we pray…Amen!

John 3

Let’s look at the passage that will be covered in this post…

(31) He who comes from above is above all; he who is of the earth is earthly and speaks of the earth. He who comes from heaven is above all. (32) And what He has seen and heard, that He testifies; and no one receives His testimony. (33) He who has received His testimony has certified that God is true. (34) For He whom God has sent speaks the words of God, for God does not give the Spirit by measure. (35) The Father loves the Son, and has given all things into His hand. (36) He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.” … John 3:31-36 NKJV

There is a difference of opinion on who is speaking here. Most believe that John The Baptist is continuing his thoughts from verses 27 to 30. However, some people believe that John The Baptist words end after verse 30 and this is now John the disciple and the writer of this Gospel’s words and he is sort of giving an editorial here in verses 31 thru 36. I believe this is the case as well and here’s why. The reason why many people, including most Bible commentators, believe this is still John The Baptist speaking is because of where the quotation marks begin and end. They begin in verse 27 and end in verse 36 leading one to believe that these are still John The Baptist’s words. However, the original text found in the King James Version has no punctuation so that leads some to believe that after verse 30, John The Baptist is done speaking. Also if you take a closer look at this passage, it looks and sounds very similar to John the disciple’s other writings. Compare the above passage to this passage from 1 John…

That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, concerning the Word of life— (2) the life was manifested, and we have seen, and bear witness, and declare to you that eternal life which was with the Father and was manifested to us— (3) that which we have seen and heard we declare to you, that you also may have fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ. (4) And these things we write to you that your joy may be full. … 1 John 1:1-4 NKJV

The styles are very similar. One last point to make about this before moving on. When you make a profound statement like John The Baptist does in verse 30, “He must increase but I must decrease”, you don’t need to add anything further to it. You’re pretty much done saying else. Therefore, this is why I believe that this is John the disciple’s comments here and not John The Baptist’s. This is John the disciple explaining why John The Baptist is saying that Jesus must increase and he must decrease and why we need to trust and rely on Jesus and Him only. Let’s take a closer look at this passage now. …

v 31 – (31) He who comes from above is above all; he who is of the earth is earthly and speaks of the earth. He who comes from heaven is above all.

John speaks of why Jesus Christ is supreme and why He is so unique in verses 31 thru 36. First here, John speaks of Christ’s origin…heaven. No one in The Bible, not Moses or any of the prophets, or anyone else on earth can claim that they came from heaven. The only one that can make that claim is Jesus Christ because He is from heaven. Jesus is God in a human body. Going back to John 1:1, it says…

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. … John 1:1 NKJV

And then way down in verse 14 in the same chapter…

(14) And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth. … John 1:14 NKJV

Can’t make it any more clearer than that! One thing you will find out in John’s Gospel is that John doesn’t give a bunch of cool stories about Jesus and then makes his point. Nope, he gets to the point right away! He says, “Look Jesus is God and here’s why!”.

Jesus Himself says that His origin is from heaven. In John 6:32, Jesus says…

(32) Then Jesus said to them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, Moses did not give you the bread from heaven, but My Father gives you the true bread from heaven. … John 6:32 NKJV

And continuing further down in John 6, we have these words from Jesus…

For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me. … John 6:38 NKJV

Let’s stop for a moment. Another reason about the uniqueness of Jesus Christ was that He was the only one born with the distinct purpose to die. Jesus Christ didn’t come to tell a bunch of cool stories or to make people feel good about themselves. He came to save people from their sins and the way He would do that is to suffer a brutal death by being nailed to a cross. When John The Baptist points Jesus out. he says, “Look! The lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world!”. A lamb was a sacrificial animal sacrificed in the temple for the forgiveness of sins. Basically, Jesus’s mother Mary “had a little lamb”! He who comes from above is above all , this statement that John makes points out the supremacy of Jesus. In other words, John is saying, “The buck stops here!”. There is no one higher than Him! Not Moses nor the prophets…no one! This is evidenced by the next comment that he makes…he who is of the earth is earthly and speaks of the earth. Let’s move on. …

vv 32-33 – (32) And what He has seen and heard, that He testifies; and no one receives His testimony. (33) He who has received His testimony has certified that God is true.

The next thing that John points out about why Jesus is unique is what He proclaimed to our world. Look at the first part of verse 32…And what He has seen and heard, that He testifies. His testimony came from heaven, in other words, John is telling us that He was there! He saw it all! Everything you read in The Bible, Jesus knows firsthand because He was there from the very beginning! Remember how the Pharisees and the Sadducees would try to trip up Jesus with things from the Scriptures? Take divorce for example. They told Jesus that Moses had permitted it but take a look at what Jesus told them…

He said to them, “Moses, because of the hardness of your hearts, permitted you to divorce your wives, but from the beginning it was not so. … Matthew 19:8 NKJV

Perhaps the statement that best illustrates the point that Jesus was there from the beginning and therefore, spoke with authority, can be found in John 8. Again in this chapter, the Pharisees are arguing with Jesus about who He really is and check out what Jesus tells them…

Jesus said to them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I AM.” … John 8:58 NKJV

This statement right here points out to us that Jesus IS God! People say, “Well Jesus never said He was God!”. Oh really? What about this verse? The statement, I AM, was what God told Moses to tell the people if they asked who sent him. I will delve into this verse further when we get to Chapter 8 in this study but I have to tell you after mulling this verse over for some time after truly reading it, I came to the conclusion, as you should as well, that Jesus is God in human flesh!

The next part of verse 32, and no one receives His testimony, is (what I believe to be) a statement of possible sarcasm or frustration from John. It’s a statement that shows what I believe is unbelief and bewilderment from John about why people were so unreceptive to Jesus. It was like John was saying, “What is it going to take for you to realize that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God!”. The statement that no one received Jesus’s testimony is not exactly correct though because verse 33 says…He who has received His testimony. This must mean that some people did. This is true because in Chapter 4, we will be looking at one who did…the woman at the well. Others did as well but for the most part, most people did not. A lot of people are like the Christians today in our country. They hung around Jesus because He did a lot of cool stuff and said a lot of cool things but when He probed deeper into the hearts of the people or when the going got tough, they bailed! 

Verses 32 and 33 were true back then and they still are today. Some people will accept Jesus but for the most part, people don’t want anything to do with Him! The main reason why is explained in verse 33…He who has received His testimony has certified that God is true. God is truth and the world can’t stand it! Their excuse is and you hear this all the time…”I just can’t believe in The Bible because it has so many contradictions!”. Here’s a fact for those people though…THE BIBLE HAS NO CONTRADICTIONS! What it does though is contradict people’s way of life and they can’t handle that! The Bible exposes the truth on how people lead their lives. It exposes the sinful nature that is in all of us and we can’t stand it! There’s a story in the Book of Acts of Stephen, a disciple of Jesus, addressing the Sanhedrin, the Jewish council, and he is going through the history of the Jewish people up to that point and how they were responsible for the crucifixion of Jesus. He ends his speech with this statement…”You stiff-necked and uncircumcised in heart and ears! You always resist the Holy Spirit as did your fathers, so do you!”. What happens? Did they walked up to him, slap him on the back, shake his hand and say, “Right on brother!”? No, the text says that they were cut to the heart and they gnashed their teeth at him and then they stoned him! The Scriptures produce conviction in people and that is what they can’t handle! Let’s move on. …

vv 34-35 – (34) For He whom God has sent speaks the words of God, for God does not give the Spirit by measure. (35) The Father loves the Son, and has given all things into His hand.

Jesus was not a man which the Holy Spirit was given to. He had a full, unrestricted flow of the Holy Spirit. Jesus wasn’t a vessel of the wisdom of God…He was a fountain! The prophets were given the Holy Spirit by measure. They had certain degrees of Him but Jesus had the Spirit without measure. The prophets were messengers who brought “letters from heaven” so to speak but Jesus was an ambassador. He spoke as no other prophet did although He was mistaken to be a prophet by some of the people. All fullness of the Godhead was in Jesus. He spoke as no one on earth had or ever will!

In verse 35, is the first of seven times that John will use the phrase, The Father loves the Son, in his Gospel. Jesus shared a unique relationship with God that no one else could. Whereas the prophets were just merely servants of God, Jesus is God’s Son and God took delight in Him as we see in these two examples in the Scriptures…

Then I was beside Him as a master craftsman; And I was daily His delight, Rejoicing always before Him, … Proverbs 8:30 NKJV

And suddenly a voice came from heaven, saying, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” … Matthew 3:17 NKJV

Even through the humiliation of the torture and the crucifixion which Jesus suffered because of the sins of mankind, The Father still loved the Son.

The rest of verse 35 speaks of Jesus’s dominion. The Father not only loves the Son but The Father has also given everything into His hand.  This also ties into verse 31…He who comes from heaven is above all. What this means is that Jesus is Lord of all…Lord over everyone and everything! He owns it all! He owns it all because He made it all. He sustains and maintains the universe. In Hebrews 1, the writer says…

God, who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets, (2) has in these last days spoken to us by His Son, whom He has appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the worlds; … Hebrews 1:1-2 NKJV

And in Colossians 1:17, Paul says…

And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist. … Colossians 1:17 NKJV

Because The Father has given everything into His hands which makes Jesus Lord of all, that means you belong to Him as well! You belong to Him whether you are believer in Christ or not. He owns you and controls you. Everything we have belongs to Him…our possessions, our families, our finances etc. We are just stewards of what the Lord blesses us with in life. You’ve heard of this saying, I’m sure, “God is my co-pilot”. You will see this on bumper stickers on people’s cars. Really? Do you really think that you are in control and God is just “along for the ride” giving you guidance here and there? BZZZ! Wrong! He is not your co-pilot…He is the pilot! As a matter of a fact, you aren’t even in the cockpit! LOL! One last thing about Jesus’s dominion. Because He made it all, He has the right and the authority to end it all! We see this in Revelation 5 which in part says…

And they sang a new song, saying: “You are worthy to take the scroll, And to open its seals; For You were slain, And have redeemed us to God by Your blood Out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation, … Revelation 5:9 NKJV

Because Jesus has the right and the authority to end it all, John makes a point and gives a warning to close out the chapter in verse 36…

v 36 – (36) He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.”

This last point that John makes is that Jesus determines our destiny. His reception by us will determine what happens to us. This verse, more or less, is John emphasizing what Jesus said back up in verse 18. There are many types of people in this world…black, white, Hispanic, Asian, Indian, Arabic etc. There are many types of religions in the world…Christianity, Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism, Islam etc. There are those who don’t believe in any religion as well. However, with all the different types of people, religions, and cultures that are in the world, John makes this point…there are only two types. There are those who believe in Jesus and those who do not. Those who do will have everlasting life. Those who do not will not have everlasting life and John says the wrath of God abides on him. You see, we live in a culture that says that all you have to do is do good and you’ll be a good person. That’s not what The Bible says though. The Bible says that we were born dead in sin. In Ephesians, Paul says that we were dead in trespasses and sin.

Notice that John uses present terms in this verse. He who believes in The Son has everlasting life. John doesn’t say “will have everlasting life”. No, he says has everlasting life. That means once you truly accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, you have everlasting life! It’s a done deal! However if you don’t, John says that the wrath of God abides on him. That word abides is also present term. Translated it means that the wrath of God remains on those who do not believe and accept Jesus Christ unless they change that decision. 

As we read this verse, we should realize that this is really God and not John speaking. So if God is speaking through His Son, why aren’t people listening? From this verse we learn that our eternal destiny depends on what we do with the Son of God. If we receive Him, God gives us eternal life as a free gift. If we reject Him, we will never enjoy everlasting life, and not only so, but God’s wrath already hangs over us, ready to fall at any moment. Notice that there is nothing in this verse about keeping the law, obeying the Golden Rule, going to church, doing the best we can, or working our way to heaven.

In closing, John is saying in this passage that we have been looking at that there is no use putting your energy and effort into anything or anyone else other than this one “nail” which is Jesus Christ. The fact is that this world, and America in particular, is populated by a whole lot of “dead” people…”dead man walking” so to speak. This not only applies to unbelievers but also to supposed believers in Christ as well! These are the “believers” that the Lord will say to them…”I never knew you! Depart from Me you who practice lawlessness!”. Doesn’t have to be this way though. This is what the rescue of Jesus Christ is all about! It is God’s grace in forgiving us if we put our trust and rely on His Son. After all, God put all His eggs in a basket by allowing and relying on His Son to hang on a cross to save us all. Now, shouldn’t we accept that free gift of forgiveness by accepting and trusting in and relying on Jesus? Let’s pray…

Father,

Thank You for allowing Your Son Jesus Christ to die on a cross to forgive us all, those who are willing to accept Him. Thank You for showing us through John why Jesus Christ is so unique and so supreme and why He is the “nail” that will never break. So unique because He came from heaven; so unique because He spoke like no else ever had or ever will and so supreme because He made and controls everything. Lord, we pray that You would help us to rely and trust on You more and more each day, our reception of You, and that if there are those who haven’t done that, haven’t put their trust in that “nail” that will never break, that they will do so today…right now! Thank You Lord for all the blessings and yes all the tribulations as well that help us to become stronger believers in relying on You in the saving name of Jesus Christ we pray…Amen!

2 and 3 John and Jude: The Believer’s Expression of Love

The book of 2 John is one of the most neglected books in the Bible. In it, John warned of the danger of compromising truth in the name of love, which the church had done by being hospitable to itinerant false teachers. He instead instructed that love and hospitality must be regulated by the truth.

While 2 John says don’t show hospitality to false teachers, the tiny book of 3 John says do show hospitality to true, faithful teachers. In other words, if you really love the truth, then you’ll love and accept anyone who stands up for it.

The book of Jude is essentially a warning to the church to fight the right war: against false teachers but for the truth, building up the faith.

To sum it up, these three little letters tell you how to express your love: 2 John warns you to be careful showing love and hospitality to false teachers, 3 John instructs you to show love and hospitality to faithful teachers, and Jude says you should lovingly warn everyone when it comes to the truths of the gospel.


Think It Through

How can you tell a false teacher from a faithful one, according to 2 John 1:7, 9-11?

What example of love, truth, and hospitality did the believer Gaius set in 3 John 1:3-8?

Read Jude 1:3. How can you contend for the faith without being contentious (see Ephesians 4:15; 1 Peter 3:15)?

List the characteristics of true love from 1 Corinthians 13:4-8. Which one(s) have to do with truth? How can you balance love and truth in your life?


Listen and Learn

The little book of 2 John is one of the most neglected in the New Testament. In this message, Skip shows us how John warned believers to guard against false teachers, specifically those who say that Jesus didn’t come in the flesh.
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Land and Explore

Want to learn what it means to contend for the faith and confront false teaching? Download this free teaching series from Pastor Skip called Jude: Acts of the Apostates.
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A Word of Encouragement

Christian love has been greatly misunderstood. Unbelievers tend to think it means tolerating anyone and anything. But if your love has no boundaries based in truth, then it isn’t really love. True love requires that you love the truth.

Prayer

Heavenly Father, thank You for 2 John, 3 John, and Jude. Since You said that Your Word will not return void but will accomplish the purpose that You’ve sent it for, I pray that having been exposed to it I indeed would be changed by it. Help me to balance love and truth in my interactions with other people, whether believers or unbelievers.

Share It

If you enjoyed today’s lesson, don’t keep it all to yourself—tell your friends and followers. Share the images below on social media, and make sure to use the hashtag #30k30daychallenge.

Today’s Resource

Did you know some of Pastor Skip’s teaching series are available as audiobooks on Audible? Check them out today.
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As we near the end of our flight through the New Testament, take this final catch-up day to begin reflecting on what you’ve learned by praying and/or journaling. You can also:

  • Memorize a verse from this week’s lessons that stuck out to you.
  • Figure out how to apply something God showed you this week.
  • Start to plan what you’ll do once this challenge is over. Have you figured out a good time and place to have daily devotions with the Lord? What in the Bible do you plan on reading?

Share It

If you’re enjoying the 30K 30-Day Challenge, don’t keep it all to yourself—tell your friends and followers. Share the images below on social media, and make sure to use the hashtag #30k30daychallenge.

Today’s Resource

Stay connected to God’s Word by subscribing to the free Calvary Church with Skip Heitzig Podcast on iTunes.
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Your Amazing Bible: Continuing in the Word

In John 15, Jesus said, “Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me” (v. 4).

When Christians have problems in life, the root problem is usually that they’re failing to genuinely seek the Lord through daily devotional time in the Word and in prayer. But when you abide in Christ, everything in life will naturally fall into place.

To abide in Christ means to maintain a constant, living communion with the Lord, with His words at home in you. This sort of consistent exposure to the Bible with a consistent desire to obey it will do more for your Christian walk than any other thing I can think of.

So my exhortation to you is to continue in the truth. Whatever you have to do, make it a daily habit to be alone with the Father and feed on the Word. Make His Word your priority in times of delight as well as times of distress. It’s the primary way you’ll hear from Him.


Think It Through

Read John 15:1-10. What can you do without Jesus? What happens when you abide in Him, according to this passage?

How does Psalm 1:1-3 describe the person who continually meditates on the Bible?

What’s the biggest challenge you face when it comes to abiding in Christ? What have you learned from the 30K 30-Day Challenge that you can apply?


Land and Explore

Next to Bible study, prayer is one of the most vital disciplines of the Christian life. Download Drawing Near, Pastor Skip’s teaching series on prayer, for free today.
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A Word of Encouragement

When you persevere in reading, understanding, and applying the Word, you’ll find that you’re able to persevere in life. So when you lose your job, the doctor says it’s cancer, or somebody leaves you in a relationship, you won’t be crushed—you’ll resort to a promise of Scripture that holds you firm.

Prayer

Father, I pray that You would create in me a hunger and a thirst to know more of Your Word. Please help me abide in You through personal devotional time in prayer and studying the Bible—and help me persevere in making the time to do so. I pray that Your Word would become more alive to me than ever before.

Share It

If you enjoyed today’s lesson, don’t keep it all to yourself—tell your friends and followers. Share the images below on social media, and make sure to use the hashtag #30k30daychallenge.

Today’s Resource

Listen to and download over 3,000 of Pastor Skip’s Bible teachings from the past thirty-plus years on his website, connectwithskip.com.
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1 John: Simple Truths Make for a Revolutionary Life

The apostle John was part of Jesus’ inner circle, and it’s believed he wrote 1 John toward the end of his life, when he was very old.

The letter has a tender, familial tone to it, like that of a father to his children, but it doesn’t follow a typical structure or outline. The best way to view 1 John is by looking at it as a series of five spirals or revolutions: John covered the same truths over and over again, each time going wider and deeper.

In covering these basic truths, John offered a revolutionary way of thinking and living life. More specifically, the truths he shared can revolutionize five things in your Christian walk: your fellowship with other believers, your joy, your holiness, your discernment against false teaching, and your assuredness in salvation. In short, these truths can revolutionize your relationship with the Lord and with people.


Think It Through

Read 1 John 2:22-23; 3:7-9; 4:1-3, 8. How can you develop discernment and tell if someone is truly a Christian?

A huge theme of 1 John is love. How do we know love (see 1 John 3:16)? How are we to love others (see vv. 16-18)?

The word know appears close to forty times in 1 John. Why is knowing so important to the Christian faith (see 1 John 5:13)? What are some ways you can know you’re really saved? (Hint: see 1 John 2:3; 3:18-19, 24.)


Listen and Learn

First John has a very tender tone, as John called the believers “little children” and “beloved.” In this short study, we learn that John boiled all of life down to two levels: horizontal (between people) and vertical (between us and God).
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Land and Explore

If you want to explore the truths of 1 John more in-depth, check out this free series from Pastor Skip titled Together We Stand.
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A Word of Encouragement

The fact that John wrote in revolutions and went back over the same truths indicates that no matter how old or mature you are in the faith, you’ll always need to be reminded of the basic truths that set you free in the first place. So get back to the simplicity, the irreducible minimum of the gospel.

Prayer

Lord, thank You for the truths of 1 John. I am so thankful that Christianity offers a revolutionary way of thinking and living life. Help me get back to the simplicity of the gospel.

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Today’s Resource

Connect to God’s Word anywhere you go by downloading the Connect with Skip Heitzig appfor iPhone or Android.
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1 and 2 Peter: The Promise of Persecution

Perhaps more than anything, the apostle Peter is known for being strong-willed and impulsive. We know his failure, denying Jesus three times. But we can’t forget his recovery and how he became the chief preacher of the gospel in the early church. And I think 1 and 2 Peter show this transformation: Peter wrote these letters to strengthen the faith of suffering, struggling believers.

In 1 Peter, his theme is simple: believers can expect danger from the outside world in the form of persecution. In light of that, God’s plan for all Christians includes five things: being secure in their salvation, surrendering to God’s will, submitting to authority and each other, suffering for Jesus Christ, and serving others.

On the flip side, Peter’s theme in 2 Peter is that Christians can expect danger from inside the church via deception and false teachers. As he explained, you need to constantly be adding to and moving forward in your faith, because the church is ground zero in the battle for truth. His words continue to ring true for us today.


Think It Through

How is the genuineness of your faith tested (see 1 Peter 1:6-7)? How precious is it?

Read 1 Peter 2:13-17. How are you to live as a citizen of heaven on earth (see also Philippians 3:20; Romans 13:1-7)?

Read 2 Peter 2. What are some of the characteristics of false teachers? How can you determine a person’s legitimacy in the Lord (see Matthew 7:15-20)?

Answer the question Peter posed in 2 Peter 3:10-12.


Listen and Learn

First Peter was written to a group of Christians who were suffering for their faith. In this message, we see how Peter taught that believers are secure in Christ and that we must be submissive both to men and to God’s will.
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Land and Explore

Pastor Skip’s series Rock Solidtakes a verse-by-verse look at 1 and 2 Peter, and we’re excited to offer it as a free download to you today.
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A Word of Encouragement

Peter’s writings have a simple premise: If Jesus Christ Himself was not exempt from suffering, then why do you think you ought to be? When you’re persecuted for being a Christian, you become a partner with Christ, entering into one of the deepest possible types of fellowship with God: the fellowship of His sufferings (see Philippians 3:10; 1 Peter 4:13).

Prayer

Heavenly Father, help me understand the gravity of Peter’s writings—that there is danger from the world but perhaps even worse danger from those inside the church who spread false teaching. I pray that You would help me stand up for the truth and stand fast in trials, knowing that my suffering isn’t in vain.

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If you enjoyed today’s lesson, don’t keep it all to yourself—tell your friends and followers. Share the images below on social media, and make sure to use the hashtag #30k30daychallenge.

Today’s Resource

Need a quick boost of solid truth? Check out Pastor Skip’s booklets on hard-hitting topics like prayer, divorce, and lust.
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James: Time to Grow Up

The book of James is not a doctrinal book; it’s a very practical book about Christian maturity. Its author, James, likely the half-brother of Jesus, addressed this letter to believers who knew the doctrines of the faith already but needed to start growing up in the Lord.

He was essentially saying, “It’s great that you know all these things, but now you have to live what you know. Being born again is exciting, but you can’t stay a spiritual baby.”

One of the letter’s key verses is James 1:22: “Be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.” You have to put on your Christianity and wear it, because “faith without works is dead” (James 2:26).

Now, James wasn’t saying we’re saved by works. Works are merely how you can tell your faith is genuine. Anyone can claim to have faith without really having it. But dynamic belief produces dynamic behavior; real faith will function.


Think It Through

What’s the upside—and necessity—of going through trials, according to James 1:2-4?

How foolish is it to read the Word but not do what it says (see James 1:23-24)? What’s the word picture James used to emphasize this?

Compare and contrast James 2:18-19 with Matthew 7:21-23 and Luke 6:46. How can you tell Jesus is truly the Lord of your life?

What does James 3:8 imply about who can tame the tongue?


Listen and Learn

James isn’t really a book of doctrine; it’s a very practical book. It teaches how to be a mature Christian and how to live what you know and practice your faith. Join Skip for a quick flight over the book of James.
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Land and Explore

The book of James gives you practical guidance on how to mature in your walk with God. Download Pastor Skip’s free series on James to learn more.
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A Word of Encouragement

James reveals that spiritual maturity is the natural-supernatural result of your life being connected to God. The best part is that nothing is keeping you from growing into a mature man or woman in the Lord. You can grow as much as you want. And how do you do that? By feeding on the truth and doing what it says.

Prayer

Father, I pray that I would always be in the process of adding to and growing in my faith, not stagnating. Please help me to not just believe what Your Word says, but do it.

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If you enjoyed today’s lesson, don’t keep it all to yourself—tell your friends and followers. Share the images below on social media, and make sure to use the hashtag #30k30daychallenge.

Today’s Resource

Many of Pastor Skip’s teachings come with detailed notes, great for personal or group study. Find them in his teaching archive at connectwithskip.com/teachings.
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Hebrews: Our Superior Savior

Hebrews is less like a letter and more like a logical essay or sermon. We’re not sure who wrote it, but it was most likely written to Jewish Christians—people who knew the Old Testament—because the book is saturated with references to Levitical law and sacrifices. You could cut this book into two slices, with chapters 1-10 being doctrinal instruction and chapters 11-13 being practical exhortation.

The overarching theme of the letter is that Jesus Christ is the perfect, full, final expression of God and is better than anyone or anything else—than any other system of religion. In fact, the author of Hebrews was obsessed with the superiority of Jesus Christ—and I’m glad he was, because he was right.

Under the old covenant, access to God was restricted. You had to go through rituals, sacrifices, courts, and the Levitical priests. But this covenant was only temporary.

The new covenant is eternal, just like Jesus Christ. Under this covenant, you have unfettered, unrestricted access to God because of the sacrifice Jesus made on the cross once for all.


Think It Through

What kind of a High Priest do we have in Jesus, according to Hebrews 4:14-16? Why can we come boldly before God? Is this your default approach to Him? Why or why not?

Read Hebrews 8:7-13 and Jeremiah 31:31-34. Why is the new covenant better than the old covenant?

Read Hebrews 7:279:12, and 10:11-12, along with John 19:30. How complete is Jesus’ sacrifice for sins? Do you have to add anything to it?

What exhortation does Hebrews 12:1-2 give the believer? How are we empowered to put this into practice?


Listen and Learn

The theme of Hebrews is that Christ is the perfect expression of God. In this short study of Hebrews, Skip explains that Jesus has a better ministry than the old covenant.
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Land and Explore

If you want to dig deeper into the life-changing truths of the new covenant, we’d like to offer you this free five-message series from Pastor Skip on Hebrews.
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A Word of Encouragement

Because Christ is better, Christianity is better. Trusting in religion or rituals—even if they were originally given by God, as Judaism was—won’t take a person to heaven. Jesus is the only hope for salvation. So leave the inferior and go to the superior, Jesus Christ.

Prayer

Lord, if I’m trusting in my religious background, my upbringing, or any rituals I’ve gone through other than personally and authentically trusting in Christ, I pray that You would open my eyes to that. Please help me leave the old and come into the new—leave the inferior and go to the superior, Jesus Christ Himself.

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If you enjoyed today’s lesson, don’t keep it all to yourself—tell your friends and followers. Share the images below on social media, and make sure to use the hashtag #30k30daychallenge.

Today’s Resource

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