Tuesday, 24 June 2014

TFTD - 24 June 2014 - Thoughts from Today's Bible Readings

24 June 2014

1 Samuel 3
Isaiah 49
Revelation 7; 8; 9

“IN A TIME OF FAVOUR”

Our first reading is the heart stirring account of young Samuel in the Temple/tabernacle at Shiloh and the LORD calling him, “Samuel, Samuel” ­ and the message he received about the failure of Eli to discipline his sons.  The ungodliness of their behaviour in appearing to serve the LORD makes sad reading ­ but it has had its parallels in every generation ­ especially today.

In contrast, the vision Isaiah records is fascinating, “Thus says the LORD, the redeemer of Israel …. In a time of favour I have answered you, in a day of salvation I have helped you … to establish the land”  [Isaiah 49:7-8] We recall what we read 2 days ago, “I am God … declaring the end from the beginning and from ancient times things not yet done … I will accomplish all my purpose” [Isaiah 46:9-10].  The Jews over the centuries have often felt abandoned, but how significant are Isaiah 49:13-15 in today’s chapter!   “… the LORD … will have compassion on his afflicted … But Zion said, ‘The LORD has forsaken me; my Lord has forgotten me.’  Can a woman forget her nursing child, that she should have no compassion … Even these may forget, yet I will not forget you.”

As we reflect on the events of the 60 ­ 70 years ago ­ and since ­ we see how remarkable are Isaiah 49:23, 25 “… those who wait for me shall not be put to shame … for I will contend with those who contend with you, and I will save your children.”  We have seen this happen in our youth, the nations surrounding the new born nation of Israel contended with her in vain, the “time of favour” had begun.

Our chapters in Revelation are awesome in many ways, especially in the angels of God being “told … to harm …only those people who do not have the seal of God on their foreheads,” [Revelation 9:4] What does the “seal” symbolise?  Ownership!  John, in his gospel, recorded Jesus as saying, “Do not labour for the food that perishes, but for the food that endures to eternal life … on him (or her) God the Father has set his seal.” [John 6:27]

May we all increasingly live with minds saturated with godly thoughts ­ and then resultant actions ­ that show we are committed to God and His Son ­ and will therefore experience the wonder of the ultimate “time of favour.”
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- DC


Thought for the Day

24 June 2014

"Surely there has been in human experience no reunion like that which will take place when all Christ’s servants are brought together and the Lord will show so movingly his appreciation of what his followers have done for him. Shall we be there? As this is the desire of our heart, let us ponder the meaning for us of Christ’s great resolve to worship God and to serve him alone. Let us think about him washing the disciples’ feet in the upper room and surrendering his life for others in the garden. This will put us in a fitting frame of mind to understand the amazing love which led God’s Suffering Servant to bear our sins in his own body on the tree."

- T.J. Barling
 An All-Embracing Fellowship (1979)
1 Samuel 3:1
"And the child Samuel ministered unto the Lord before Eli. And the WORD of the LORD was PRECIOUS in those days; there was no open vision"

We live in a time where there is no open vision, and the word of God is indeed precious to us.

The word (knowledge) of God reminds us of our wonderful position, where the application of the precious word and knowledge leads to the precious promises of our Heavenly Father that we pray will be soon:
"Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the KNOWLEDGE of God, and of Jesus our Lord, According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the KNOWLEDGE of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and PRECIOUS promises:that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust" (2 Pet 1:2-4)