Monday, June 11, 2012

June 11-17

Monday: Genesis 23
Tuesday: Judges 19
Wednesday: Psalm 48
Thursday: Isaiah 52
Friday: Zechariah 3
Saturday: Acts 16
Sunday Titus 1


Prairie Chick said...

Gen 23:5 "Then the Hittites replied, 'Why, you're no mere outsider here with us, you're a prince of God!'"

We should live such lives that the people around us respect, revere, and embrace us as a people set apart, a higher integrity, a deeper love, a more empathetic and generous heart and life than the world can offer. |Characteristics that will set us apart as people of royal character and pure heart in a wicked and depraved generation.

"That you may show yourselves to be blameless and guileless, innocent and uncontaminated, children of God without blemish (faultless, unrebukable) in the midst of a crooked and wicked generation [spiritually perverted and perverse], among whom you are seen as bright lights (stars or beacons shining out clearly) in the [dark] world," Phil 2:15

Prairie Chick said...

this has to be one of the most atrocious retellings found in scripture. the depravity and the horror of it are mind boggling. my lip curls in disgust over the type of people this man and his host were. so far from the champion of the weak that God calls us to be, they actually exposed the weak and used them as shields. more and more in my life I am feeling called to champion the weak. To show them love and acceptance and compassion and friendship, to build them up and encourage them to thrive.

heather said...

I fully agree with how you interpret this one! I find it very difficult to read many of the passages in Judges. Very hard to understand what God is trying to teach through the atrocities. I love your take on caring for the weak and not using them as a shield! Thank you for the great insight!

Prairie Chick said...

sometimes I think God just wants us to see how depraved we really are, as a fallen humanity. the atrocities of secular humanism, where each person is free to decide for himself what is right or best for him. not a pretty picture.

Lois said...

I have also had trouble trying to figure out what to learn from these difficult passages -- it seems so far removed from us. I found the LAB notes to be very helpful. -- and it goes with what you were saying, PC. For whoever doesn't have a Life Application Bible, these notes apply to Chps 18 & 19: "The true worship of God should have been maintained....[the story of Micah and the idol] shows how pagan influences and moral depravity had crept into every corners of Israelite culture.... There may be a tendency in your life to allow "harmless" habits to have their own small corners, but they can become dominating forces."

Chp. 19 "What is the significance of this tragic story? When the Israelite's faith in God disintegrated, their unity as a nation also disintegrated. They could have taken complete possession of the land if they had obeyed God and trusted him to keep his promises. But when they forgot him, they lost their purpose, and soon "The people did whatever seemed right in their own eyes". When they stopped letting God lead them, they became no better than the evil people around them. When they made laws for their own benefit, they set standards far below God's. When you leave God out of your life, you may be shocked at what you are capable. of doing."

Chp 19:24 "Nowhere is the unwritten law of hospitality stronger than in the Middle East. Protecting a guest at any cost ranked at the top of a man's code of honor. But here the hospitality code turned to fanaticism. The rape and abuse of a daughter and companion were preferable to the possibility of a conflict between a guest and a neighbor. The two men were selfish (they didn't want to get hurt themselves) they lacked courage (they didn't want to face a conflict even when lives were at stake) and they disobeyed God's law (they allowed deliberate abuse and murder) What drastic consequences can result when social protocol carries more authority than moral convictions!"

Prairie Chick said...

Isaiah 52 "How beautiful on the hills are the feet of those who bring good news."

I want to be beautiful. I want to shout good news from the hilltops each day. That God loves, God forgives, God restores, God empowers.

What message could be more beautiful than that, and how blessed the one who gets to lead another to the understanding of the depths of those truths.

Denise said...

Isaiah 52
"Let those weary and heavy laden under the burden of sin, find relief in Christ, shake themselves from the dust of their doubts and fears, and loose themselves from those bands."

PC, I hear you shouting the good news from the hilltops! And you and the message are beautiful!

Prairie Chick said...

"shake themselves from the dust and loose themselves from the bands" LOVE that!!!!!

Prairie Chick said...

zech 3. I happened to be in Parables the other day and they had the life application bibles on final sale, so I snatched myself one... always love your comments from there so much when some of you share them. Very helpful on days like today when the passage seems so... non applicable. Something in here did really speak to me though.

"Satan accused Jeshua... the accusations were accurate-Jeshua stood in filthy clothes (sins). yet God revealed His mercy, stating that He chose to save His people in spite of their sin. Satan is always accusing people of their sin before God. But he greatly misunderstands the breadth of God's mercy and forgiveness towards those who believe in Him."

This sounds ugly, but I have had some accusations in my heart toward someone, and they are hindering me from being able to love this person the way God does. My accusations are accurate, but I know that is not where it is at. God wants me to desire great things for this person, believe great things for this person, pray great things for this person. The passage God gave me last night to look up (when I was asking Him to speak into my life in this area) was Rom 14 and 1 Cor 14. The first one says; "who are you to judge another man's servant, to His own master he stands or falls, and I am able to make him stand..." and the second one was that "love is not irritable". The note on that in the LAB was so bang on for me. Sometimes I let my idealism and perfectionism get my knickers all in a wad when things aren't the way I wish they were, or I think God desires them to be.

But this is not about other people, or circumstances, this is about how I relate and respond to other people and circumstances and I realize that I am lacking. I am lacking in love, patience, grace and goodwill. I recognize this and am grieved by this and desire to embrace more of those traits in my life by the grace of God.

Joan said...

I love the Life application Bible too. Would recommend everyone get one if possible.

Denise said...

Zech 3
This passage also struck me as well:
"Yet God revealed His mercy, stating that He chose to save His people in spite of their sin. Satan is always accusing people of their sin before God. But he greatly misunderstands the breadth of God's mercy and forgiveness towards those who believe in Him." The breadth of God's mercy and forgiveness is truly a wonderful thing. Sometimes it feels like it just can't be true - there is so much sin and so much straying how could a person possibly keep coming back again and again and be forgiven and loved every time? But His love is a tangible thing! As soon as you turn your face towards Him you can feel it! Amazing!

Denise said...

PC, I see your "love, patience, grace and goodwill" in SO many ways!!

Prairie Chick said...

acts 16... so the churches were strengthened in the faith.

we get strengthened in our faith by hearing from those further along the journey than us, being encouraged and challenged and inspired by their wisdom, experience and fellowship. \let it be a lesson to us all. We are all in a place to strengthen another.

Prairie Chick said...

"Such people claim they know God, but deny Him by the way they live." Titus 1:16

Lately God has been challenging me with this concept of "absolute surrender". That really knowing God results in really surrendering every aspect of my life to Him and to His glory. That means that even when I am cooking a meal, or changing a diaper, or listening to the needs of a friend.... I am serving God through having a surrendered heart to understanding that doing everything with the right attitude and with a mindset to be conformed to Christ, is what it's all about. It's that simple. God should be the source of all, the point of all, the breath and life and glory of ALL I am and ALL I do. Absolute surrender. Knowing Him, embracing Him, living, breathing, becoming more like Him.