- The LORD is busy about all of the affairs of mankind. Whether wandering (vs. 4), in prison (vs. 10), in folly (vs. 17), or traveling (vs. 23 & 26); the LORD is directing, delivering, correcting and comforting. It is implied that not all can see this (vs. 42). A sign of divine wisdom would be that you can see these things (vs. 43). If you find yourself seeing God’s sovereign work today, pause and respond appropriately (vs. 8, 15, 21, 31, & 43).
- LORD, “Let [me] thank [you] for [your] steadfast love, for [your] wonderous works to [us]!”
Isaiah 38 & 39:
- Hezehiah is given a providential word of his death (vs. 1). What is most interesting is that Hezekiah, in his severe grief, appeals to the LORD, in a way that seems to be in opposition to what the LORD already decreed (vs. 3). Amazingly, the LORD, because of Hezekiah’s tears and prayers, holds back Hezekiah’s death by 15 years! (vs. 5-6)
- We must always let God be God in our hearts. Meaning, we should be content with an answer of “no” to our prayers. But it seems that it can be ok, even mysteriously effective, to pray from honest hearts our deepest desires. Even when it would seem that God’s will is in conflict with our own, perhaps God would grant our sincere requests.
- LORD, I do not know if what I want is in harmony with what You will. Nevertheless, I ask that You give me life and a place where I can declare Your glory and goodness to those who may hear and respond and find deliverance. Your will be done.
1 Timothy 1:
- Paul left Timothy, a young but competent believer, in Ephesus in order to protect this young church from straying from the Gospel of grace that Paul preached. The greatest dangers do not seem to come from “bad” people, but from those who lead the church. The reason is, they desire to be teachers (vs. 7). That is, they want to appear smart. Yet, Paul says that they are speaking confidently about things they are ignorant of. There is a “sound doctrine” (vs. 10b) that comes from a healthy understanding of God’s word (vs. 8) when led by the Holy Spirit (who authored the Scriptures). Coming to the explosive verses 19-20, it seems to me that the “shipwreck of their faith” is not so much rooted in immoral behaviors (though this would be an outworking of it – vs. 8-11), but it is rooted in “rejecting this” (vs. 19b) Gospel of grace (vs. 12-17) that Paul preached and demonstrated in his life.
- Jesus, give me the strength to cling to your grace, not arrogantly blaspheming your law and your work. Help me to cling to “sound doctrine” and teach others to proclaim it well (vs. 3-5), that your Church in its local expressions might have a strong foundation to stand on.
Categories: Words of Life