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Daily Devotional | Keeps Us from Straying

A lost dog in a Chicago neighborhood sparked a massive search that went viral on social media. Toby, a 2-year-old German shepherd, strayed from his yard, causing his family to scour the neighborhood, and started a “Find Toby” movement on social media. Finally, a police officer found and returned the lost pup to his family. The officer said, “I’m just elated that he is home and that he brought all these strangers together.”

Sometimes we are a lot like that lost puppy. In our Christian walk, we face many temptations to stray from the true path. We’re still sheep, after all. Thanks to the Good Shepherd, we have been given resources to help us resist temptation and choose righteousness most importantly, the Holy Spirit and God’s Word.

In Psalm 119 the Psalmist expresses his love for God’s Word. Where does this fit in our month’s study? After our initial decision to trust Christ for salvation, there is more work to be done. Theologians call the first event “justification” and the second “sanctification.” We’re redeemed, and we’re also still in the process of being redeemed. This is why the Psalmist pleads, “Give me understanding according to your word” (v. 169). He’s boldly asking God Himself to be his teacher (v. 171).

The value of Scripture is clear: God’s Word is righteous (v. 172). It gives delight (v. 174). It sustains our very lives (v. 175). Sincere worshipers must choose and live by its precepts (v. 173). As we do so, we’ll overflow with praise (vv. 171–172, 175). When we lean on our own strength, it is easy to stray (v. 176). We depend on the Shepherd to seek us out and bring us back to Him. Humility and weakness should drive us time and again to His Word!

>> Bible study is a spiritual discipline that keeps our hearts close to the Shepherd. We are glad you are studying the Bible with Today in the Word. Why not share this study with a friend today.

BY Brad Baurain

Dr. Brad Baurain has worked as a writer and editor for Today in the Word since 1993. Currently, he serves as associate professor and TESOL program head at Moody Bible Institute. Brad has the unique privilege of holding a degree from four different universities (including Moody). He has also taught in China, Vietnam, the United States, and Canada. Brad and his wife, Julia, have four children and reside in Munster, Indiana.

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