Just a Minute

Just a Minute is a collection of brief but meaningful meditations on Scripture. BJU Press has published a book by the same name with 96 of these devotional articles. Each chapter focuses on a Scripture verse or two, blending key facts about context with meditations on the truth of the passage. Find out how taking just a minute each day can change your life!
If you are interested, you can purchase Just A Minute, containing the first 96 printed articles.

The Smelly Belly (Just A Minute #139)

Andy Bonikowsky
Written by Andy Bonikowsky

And he said unto them, I am an Hebrew; and I fear the LORD, the God of heaven, which hath made the sea and the dry land. . . . Now the LORD had prepared a great fish to swallow up Jonah. And Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights. (Jonah 1:9, 17)

Jonah had not counted on the fish.

His decision had been made some time before arriving at the Joppa seaport. He had caught a whiff of divine mercy in the assignment and simply was not going to Nineveh to preach. So he purchased the passage and settled down for the journey across the Mediterranean. About the time a few dark clouds began to roll in, Jonah was starting to yawn. Soon he was sound asleep.

Read more: The Smelly Belly (Just A Minute #139)

A Peaceful Change (Just A Minute #138)

Andy Bonikowsky
Written by Andy Bonikowsky

Nebuchadnezzar the king, unto all people, nations, and languages, that dwell in all the earth; Peace be multiplied unto you. (Daniel 4:1)

Taken in the context of the first three chapters, the last phrase is nothing less than remarkable.

Peace? Why the man was a brute!

Read more: A Peaceful Change (Just A Minute #138)

The Great Builder (Just A Minute #137)

Andy Bonikowsky
Written by Andy Bonikowsky

Now it came to pass, as David sat in his house, that David said to Nathan the prophet, Lo, I dwell in an house of cedars, but the ark of the covenant of the LORD remaineth under curtains. Then Nathan said unto David, Do all that is in thine heart; for God is with thee. . . . For Thou, O my God, hast told Thy servant that Thou wilt build him an house: therefore Thy servant hath found in his heart to pray before Thee. (1 Chronicles 17:1-2, 25)

King David had thought of a project he was sure would delight the heart of God, and one that would be the crowning achievement of his reign: To build for Jehovah the most glorious temple ever erected by man.

The immediate encouragement Prophet Nathan gave him must have considerably strengthened his resolve. The one called "a man after God's own heart" was sure that he had been given a green light to undertake this magnificent project.

So he must have really been stunned when the prophet return a little while later with the shattering news . . . God had nixed his plan!

Read more: The Great Builder (Just A Minute #137)

A Reason for the Ravens (Just A Minute #136)

Andy Bonikowsky
Written by Andy Bonikowsky

So he went and did according unto the word of the LORD: for he went and dwelt by the brook Cherith, that is before Jordan. And the ravens brought him bread and flesh in the morning, and bread and flesh in the evening; and he drank of the brook. (1 Kings 17:5-6)

Doesn't that strike you as really odd?

For what reason in all the world might God choose to do something like that? Certainly He had plenty of other more normal options for feeding his man. There were still a good number of Hebrews throughout the land who believed in Jehovah--at least seven thousand had refused to bend the knee before Baal.

Why even in Ahab's own court there was a servant by the name of Obadiah who would soon risk his neck to save a hundred prophets. Surely the Lord could have arranged for this man to meet Elijah and provide him with a hideout.

But God did not do that.

Read more: A Reason for the Ravens (Just A Minute #136)

Completely Honest (Just A Minute #135)

Andy Bonikowsky
Written by Andy Bonikowsky

But as for me, this secret is not revealed to me for any wisdom that I have more than any living, but for their sakes that shall make known the interpretation to the king, and that thou mightest know the thoughts of thy heart. (Daniel 2:30)

Why in the world would Daniel say a thing like that?

Here he was, about to reveal to Nebuchadnezzar his supposedly forgotten dream and its meaning. This man was at the pinnacle of human power, so much so that even Daniel called him the king of kings later on in the passage. The young prophet held in his mind the key to saving his own neck, as well as those of every other wise man in the empire. He also was the possessor of an interpretation the king was willing to exchange for a fortune.

Read more: Completely Honest (Just A Minute #135)