Sunday, 3 August 2014

TFTD - 29 July 2014 - Thoughts from Today's Bible Readings

29 July 2014

2 Samuel 15
Jeremiah 19
Romans 3; 4

“IF I FIND FAVOUR”

We are now reading of the more serious developments in the life of David: the full extent of the trouble that Nathan the prophet had said would come upon him as a result of his sins of adultery and murder.  His son Absalom has a conspiracy to seize the throne and David flees from Jerusalem saying, “If I find favour in the eyes of the LORD, he will bring me back … but if he says, ‘I have no pleasure in you , behold here I am, let him do what seems good to him.”  [2 Samuel 15:25-26]

Then “David went up the ascent of the Mount of Olives, weeping as he went” [2 Samuel 15:30]. We note how the Mount of Olives also features in the life of David’s ‘greater son,’ Jesus, “it was his custom” to go there [Luke 22:39].  Jesus ascended to heaven from here and will return there [Acts 1:11-12] and cause it to split in two [Zechariah 14:4] and surely that last event will be a key factor in God’s physical judgements on our godless world! The vision in Revelation invites us to read it as a literal event, for together with the reference to “Armageddon” we read, “…there were flashes of lightning , rumblings, peals of thunder, and a great earthquake such as there had never been since man was on the earth, so great was that earthquake.” [Revelation 16:18]

The last verse in our chapter in Jeremiah [19] is also relevant to our thoughts, “Thus says in LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, behold, I am bringing upon this city and upon all its towns all the disaster that I have pronounced against it, because they have stiffened their neck, refusing to hear my words”   Today, God’s word is available to be read in every language, but how many “hear” by properly reading it?  In God’s perception of humans today, nearly all are stiff-necked!  Let us make sure we are not.

Let us become like Abraham of whom we read today in Romans 4; “No distrust made him waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God, fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised.   That is why his faith was “counted to him as righteousness.”  But the words “it was counted to him” were not written for his sake alone, but for ours also.  It will be counted to us who believe in him who raised from the dead, Jesus our Lord.” [Romans 4:20-24]  May no distrust, no disbelief make us waver - but instead may we “grow strong in faith” and so “find favour.”
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- DC


Thought for the Day

29 July 2014

"Christian love, since it is inspired by the love of God, is selfless, not self-seeking, strives not for its own satisfaction but for the good of others, is quietly persistent, not intermittent, is all-pervading, not limited in time or place, and is never contaminated by evil things such as jealousy. It is like that because the love of God is like that. God’s love sought us not because we had any merit or anything to commend us in the sight of God but because God is love. Our love needs to be quickened by that which gives it pleasure and satisfaction but God’s love is not so, for “God commends his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." (Romans 5:8)"

- E.J. Newman
The Life We Share (1962)