Monday, 30 June 2014

TFTD - 30 June 2014 - Thoughts from Today's Bible Readings

30 June 2014

1 Samuel 11; 12
Isaiah 55
Revelation 19; 20

“WITH ALL YOUR HEART”

There can be no half measures in serving the LORD, either we are fully committed  - or not - there is the narrow way - or the broad way. Our first reading today describes the success of King Saul when he began his reign, he did serve the LORD - he began well, encouraged and guided by Samuel. We have no Samuel to guide us, but we have God’s word - all of it. Samuel exhorts the people and Saul, “Serve the LORD with all your heart…. do not turn aside after empty things that cannot profit … Moreover, as for me, far be it from me that I should sin against the LORD by ceasing to pray for you …. Fear the LORD and serve him faithfully with all your heart.” [1 Samuel 12:20,21,23,24] All around us people occupy their minds with ‘empty things.’  We are going to read in coming days , the failure of Saul to follow the LORD with all his heart - a lesson for us.

Next - what a wonderful vision Isaiah records for us, it is somewhat parallel to Samuel’s. He tells God’s people not to “labour for that which does not satisfy?  Listen diligently to me …” [Isaiah 55:2]  We can read - diligently - what God has caused to be written and preserved - “Seek the LORD while he may be found” [Isaiah 55:6] is an even more urgent call to us today.  “For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven and … water the earth, making it bring forth… so shall my word be that goes from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty , but it shall accomplish that which I purpose … for you shall go out in joy and be led forth in peace” [Isaiah 55:10-12]

Chapter 20 in Revelation spells out that wondrous time to come, a time when those who are not ‘marked’ by the “beast” of humanity with fleshly attitudes and ambitions, but have served  “the LORD with all their heart” - not being distracted and turning “aside after fleshly things” - they will have experienced wonder far beyond our comprehension when they came “to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years.” [Revelation 20:4] Parts of the final chapters of Revelation look back over time - from the perspective of timelessness - what a perception of “heart” will then be achieved - may we develop clearness of vision and a dedicated sense of commitment with all our heart so that, by the grace of God, we will be there.
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- DC


Thought for the Day

30 June 2014

"There is something profoundly moving in ... thinking about eternity, and it must be counted the greatest treasure and experience of our lives that prophets should have been inspired to write for our learning of things and visions which reveal horizons beyond the ken of natural man, and the more the pity that our age and our kind of civilization leaves us little time to sit still "to hear the word of the Lord".

- John Marshall
Reflections on the Way (1960)