Today’s Reading – 1 Chronicles 23 – 25 (Click on the references to listen to the audio – Click here to view the passage from Blue Letter Bible)
Listen to this morning’s Scripture song – Psalm 61:1 – 3
Read the “0514 Evening and Morning” devotion for today, by the late Charles Haddon Spurgeon.
Read a previous post from this passage – “The Hope of the Future.”
“For by the last words of David the Levites were numbered from twenty years old and above: Because their office was to wait on the sons of Aaron for the service of the house of the LORD, in the courts, and in the chambers, and in the purifying of all holy things, and the work of the service of the house of God; Both for the shewbread, and for the fine flour for meat offering, and for the unleavened cakes, and for that which is baked in the pan, and for that which is fried, and for all manner of measure and size; And to stand every morning to thank and praise the LORD, and likewise at even; And to offer all burnt sacrifices unto the LORD in the sabbaths, in the new moons, and on the set feasts, by number, according to the order commanded unto them, continually before the LORD: And that they should keep the charge of the tabernacle of the congregation, and the charge of the holy place, and the charge of the sons of Aaron their brethren, in the service of the house of the LORD.” (1 Chronicles 23:27-32)
In the weeks leading up to this blog post I’ve read these scriptures over and over. As many of us probably do, I skimmed over the generations of who bore who and didn’t care nearly enough for the attention to detail that God placed in His Word. The reminder echoed through my heart with the conviction that brought me to the realization once again that every single word in this blessed Book is here for a reason, given by inspiration and preserved throughout the ages for us. We stumble through the chapters of generations mispronouncing names and often wondering why God even put this in the Bible, but I would ask you to put aside these preconceived notions that these chapters hold little value. Jump into them with a spirit ready to receive truth from God. Stand in awe at God’s amazing attention to detail and marvel at his accuracy. Don’t shrink from it, go to it with a desire to learn more about God and his word. Find the verses that speak directly to your heart and dwell on them, letting them seep into your soul with their truth.
With that in mind I wanted to share just a little of the truth that God placed on my heart when I read these passages. I read striving to learn and understand and I admired the organization of how each family had their place, and at the order in which things were conducted. Then my eyes fell to chapter 23 and verse 30 “ and to stand every morning to thank and praise the Lord, and likewise at even;”. Among all the details in this passage this verse jumped out at me. Praise: one of the most prominent commands in the Bible. The phrase resonated in my heart with the Holy Spirit in that calm still voice asking me if I had been praising and thanking the Lord? Not only in the morning but in the evening as well. Asking if I had been giving God the glory that He is due.
My twofold challenge is simple, but I hope it will bless you and help you as you go throughout your day, do you go to your bible each day with a heart open to His word? Secondly, do you praise him? Praise him like the Levite’s who were skilled and cunning singers and those who sang in worship to their almighty creator. Learn to see each word in the Bible as a gift from God and let His spirit speak to you.
Posted in Devotions by Rachel Rice with 3 comments.
Listen to this morning’s Scripture song – Psalm 55:17
Read the “0513 Evening and Morning” devotion for today, by the late Charles Haddon Spurgeon
“Now it came to pass after this, that Nahash the king of the children of Ammon died, and his son reigned in his stead. And David said, I will shew kindness unto Hanun the son of Nahash, because his father shewed kindness to me. And David sent messengers to comfort him concerning his father. So the servants of David came into the land of the children of Ammon to Hanun, to comfort him. But the princes of the children of Ammon said to Hanun, Thinkest thou that David doth honour thy father, that he hath sent comforters unto thee? are not his servants come unto thee for to search, and to overthrow, and to spy out the land? Wherefore Hanun took David’s servants, and shaved them, and cut off their garments in the midst hard by their buttocks, and sent them away.” (1 Chronicles 19:1-4)
It didn’t take very long into chapter 19 for the Lord to speak to me. In this chapter David’s friend Nahash, the king of the children of Ammon, has died. He was a good friend to David and David goes to Ammon to comfort his son Hanun. Hanun has this group of friends or advisors, the princes, and they start speculating over the true nature of David’s visit. They start sowing seeds of doubt in Hanun’s ears by saying that David wasn’t there to comfort, but rather to spy out the goods of the land, and soon Hanun starts to believe the things they are saying. This series of gossip, followed by speculation and doubt, set in motion a series of events that wind up costing the children of Ammon dearly. They wind up losing their allies and becoming servants to David.
There are a couple of lessons here. The first one is gossip: these princes think they knew something, and they began to whisper in Hanun’s ear about it. The second is speculation: Hanun listened to these whispers and started this battle in his own mind of doubt. The first thing he should have done is gather the facts. I suspect if he had prayed about this and asked God to give him clarity over the situation, God very well could have said “Well go ask David instead of just sitting here wondering about it.” But, he didn’t ask God; he just chose to act.
But, then I realized that I am just like Hanun. I have been Hanun over and over again in my life. A situation arises with a friend or family member, or within the church, and I gossip, or listen to gossip, I speculate and doubt instead of praying for wisdom. I battle in my mind and then act, and then consequences arise. How many relationships have been broken because of situations like this? Probably a ton. I can do better. We as Christians can do better than that. We need God’s wisdom in our relationships, don’t forget to include Him.
Posted in Devotions by Melissa Clayton with 5 comments.
Today’s Reading – 1 Chronicles 16 – 18 (Click on the references to listen to the audio – Click here to view the passage from Blue Letter Bible)
Listen to this morning’s Scripture song – Psalm 51
Read the “0512 Evening and Morning” devotion for today, by the late Charles Haddon Spurgeon
“Sing unto him, sing psalms unto him, talk ye of all his wondrous works. Glory ye in his holy name: let the heart of them rejoice that seek the LORD.” (1 Chronicles 16:9-10)
How many times I sat down to read the entirety of these three chapters but was instead left in complete awe at chapter 16 had to have been more times than I care to count. Although I did get to chapters 17 and 18 as well, and they only served to enrichen it even more. How passionately these chapters demonstrate the subject of praise and the goodness of God is enough to write a book on, but I’ll spare you the time and keep it concise.
I’ve been reading through Psalms separately from this, and I find it as no coincidence that this chapter coincided perfectly with the Psalms I read this week. Psalm 96 is parallel to 1 Chronicle 16:23-36 and it is the Psalm that David writes to praise and thank God for their victory in war and the retrieving of the ark that symbolizes God’s presence with them. It’s also the Psalm that brought revival to my spirit last year, when my walk with God began to feel dry and it seemed like I had forgotten how to praise. It served as a powerful reminder that God really was always with me, which in and of itself is always a reason to praise Him.
The difference between praising God in your personal walk, in comparison to the way that David praised God in the Old Testament, is that ours is a spiritual war while David was fighting literal wars. David praised in an elaborate and awesome way for an earthly victory, but God won when He died on the cross and that is the ultimate victory that we should celebrate through our praise today. That has unfortunately almost become a cliche statement, but it should never become routine. Praise is an intentional acknowledgment of God’s victory over our lives.
Chapter 17 and 18 are a great ending to the vignette of the story as it shows David’s promises from God, and his victories as the king, both of which I’m confident are direct results of His praise to God. Praise and victory go hand in hand, so to have victory in your walk with God, start by simply praising Him.
Posted in Devotions by Rebekah Rice with 5 comments.
Listen to this morning’s Scripture song – Psalm 47:1
Read the “0510 Evening and Morning” devotion for today, by the late Charles Haddon Spurgeon
“And David longed, and said, Oh that one would give me drink of the water of the well of Bethlehem, that is at the gate! And the three brake through the host of the Philistines, and drew water out of the well of Bethlehem, that was by the gate, and took it, and brought it to David: but David would not drink of it, but poured it out to the LORD,” (1 Chronicles 11:17-18)
Today’s passage reveals all of the mighty men that labored and served alongside of David, both before and after he became king. These men were with him as he was on the run and hiding from King Saul, and they continued to serve with him as he was given the kingdom of Judah, and then later when he became king over all of Israel. These men were faithful to David and to the Lord, and because they were in the will of God fighting the Lord’s battles, God blessed them mightily. It is amazing to see what these men were able to do in God’s strength.
Verses fifteen through nineteen tell a strange story regarding when David and his men were fighting against the Philistines. The likely account of this battle is found in 2 Samuel 5:17 – 21 and is the first victory David had after being made king over all of Israel. David was “in the hold,” the cave of Adullam, and he had enemy forces entrenched around him in the Valley of Rephaim. He makes a strange request, probably to no-one particularly; he was likely just thinking out loud. He expressed his wish for some of the water from the well back home in Bethlehem. He wasn’t asking or expecting that somebody would actually do it, he was just longing for some of that good water back home. Maybe there was no fresh or good water where he was, who knows.
Three of his faithful men, however, hear David’s request, and risk their lives to make it happen. David is doubtless shocked that these men would do this for him, but he is also very appreciative of their love for him. He does not accept the gift, but rather “poured it out to the Lord,” as an offering. I often wondered why David would not take the gift, especially after his men risk their lives to give it to him. However, David wasn’t about to enjoy that good water while the rest of his men were thirsty. He recognized his unworthiness for the gift, and he offered it instead to the Lord. This is reminiscent of Uriah the Hittite, who would not go to enjoy the company of his wife while the rest of Israel’s army was out fighting a battle (See 2 Samuel 11:11 – 13).
There are two thoughts from this passage that I would like to share. First, I appreciate these men who took great risks to express their love and devotion to their king. David was their leader, and he was the one whom God had chosen to be the king. And he was a good king. He loved his people, and served right alongside of his men. Our King is the Lord Jesus Christ, and we ought to be willing to do anything to please Him. But, we also ought to get better at expressing our appreciation for the people who are important to us. During this COVID-19 pandemic, many are finding creative ways to express their thanks to all of the necessary workers, especially those health care workers who are at the highest risk of contracting the virus. It is interesting that Jesus actually used the illustration of giving a cup of cold water as being deserving of a reward (See Matthew 10:42).
My second thought concerns David’s reluctance to take the gift. There are many leaders of men who would have selfishly demanded a lot more than just a drink of water. They see themselves as better than other men, deserving of more honor. They expect others to serve them, but are reluctant to be “servant leaders” themselves. David didn’t see himself this way. He considered himself completely unworthy of all that God had done for him. You and I are completely unworthy of all of the blessings that God has bestowed upon us as well.
Posted in Devotions by Phil Erickson with no comments yet.
Read the “0509 Evening and Morning” devotion for today, by the late Charles Haddon Spurgeon
“Now the Philistines fought against Israel; and the men of Israel fled from before the Philistines, and fell down slain in mount Gilboa. And the Philistines followed hard after Saul, and after his sons; and the Philistines slew Jonathan, and Abinadab, and Malchishua, the sons of Saul. And the battle went sore against Saul, and the archers hit him, and he was wounded of the archers. Then said Saul to his armourbearer, Draw thy sword, and thrust me through therewith; lest these uncircumcised come and abuse me. But his armourbearer would not; for he was sore afraid. So Saul took a sword, and fell upon it. And when his armourbearer saw that Saul was dead, he fell likewise on the sword, and died. So Saul died, and his three sons, and all his house died together. And when all the men of Israel that were in the valley saw that they fled, and that Saul and his sons were dead, then they forsook their cities, and fled: and the Philistines came and dwelt in them. And it came to pass on the morrow, when the Philistines came to strip the slain, that they found Saul and his sons fallen in mount Gilboa. And when they had stripped him, they took his head, and his armour, and sent into the land of the Philistines round about, to carry tidings unto their idols, and to the people. And they put his armour in the house of their gods, and fastened his head in the temple of Dagon. And when all Jabeshgilead heard all that the Philistines had done to Saul, They arose, all the valiant men, and took away the body of Saul, and the bodies of his sons, and brought them to Jabesh, and buried their bones under the oak in Jabesh, and fasted seven days. So Saul died for his transgression which he committed against the LORD, even against the word of the LORD, which he kept not, and also for asking counsel of one that had a familiar spirit, to enquire of it; And enquired not of the LORD: therefore he slew him, and turned the kingdom unto David the son of Jesse.” (1Chronicles 10:1-14)
Good morning. King Saul is dead. Why? For his transgression against the Lord, even against the Word of the Lord which he kept not, and also asking counsel of one that had a familiar spirit, to enquire of it; and enquired not of the Lord. What bothers me is that the Bible says, right here in black and white, that Saul not only transgressed the Law (Saul did what he shouldn’t do), but he also did not keep the Law (Saul didn’t do what he should have done).
Election time will be coming up: watch the campaigning. Does the candidate support Israel?
“Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee: And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing: And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.” (Genesis 3:1-3)
Does your candidate support killing babies: abortion? There have been over 61 million innocent babies killed since Roe vs. Wade (1973).
“Then the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.” (Jermiah 1:4-5)
Have you lost a loved one to cancer, or some other disease? Maybe God had ordained one of those 61 million with a cure?
What does the candidate think about God’s Law? Should he get the Bible back into schools, government offices and courts? Do you feel the same way as David?
“It is time for thee, LORD, to work: for they have made void thy law.” (Psalm 119:126)
“Rivers of waters run down mine eyes, because they keep not thy law.” (Psalm 119:136)
We need the True Living God, not some idol of stone that has ears, but can’t hear; eyes, but can’t see; a mouth, but can’t speak. Thus saith the LORD…
“Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else.” (Isaiah 45:22)
“Remember the former things of old: for I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me…” (Isaiah 46:9)
And God made it easy for us to be happy and blessed again…
“If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” (2Chronicles 7:14)
“Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD; and the people whom he hath chosen for his own inheritance.” (Psalm 32:12)
“Happy is that people, that is in such a case: yea, happy is that people, whose God is the LORD.” (Psalm 144:15)
The government is going broke, affordable health care is a joke. The Communists are trying to kill us with germ warfare. But…
“When a man’s ways please the LORD, he maketh even his enemies to be at peace with him.” (Proverbs 16:7)
Draw me not away with the wicked, and with the workers of iniquity, which speak peace to their neighbours, but mischief is in their hearts.” (Psalm 28:3)
Posted in Devotions by Pastor Ted Stahl with 2 comments.
Today’s Reading – 1 Chronicles 6 (Click on the references to listen to the audio – Click here to view the passage from Blue Letter Bible)
Listen to this morning’s Scripture song – Psalm 25
Read the “0507 Evening and Morning” devotion for today, by the late Charles Haddon Spurgeon
“And these are they whom David set over the service of song in the house of the LORD, after that the ark had rest. … Their brethren also the Levites were appointed unto all manner of service of the tabernacle of the house of God. But Aaron and his sons offered upon the altar of the burnt offering, and on the altar of incense, and were appointed for all the work of the place most holy, and to make an atonement for Israel, according to all that Moses the servant of God had commanded.” (1 Chronicles 6:31, 48-49)
Ezra, the believed author of Chronicles, is educating us on who certain people are and what their jobs are. He mentions many different jobs and tasks and I couldn’t help but realize that there’s different people in the whole nation of Israel and not everyone does the same thing. And even in the tribe of Levi were there different roles and tasks to do that certain people were better at than others.
1. Singers (v. 31) – I am sure that the ones appointed to sing were people who had a musical ability. Who were well trained in their position.
2. Servers (v.48) – Men who were highly skilled in serving. Men who could sweep or carry out ashes. Men who knew their job. Obviously not any lesser than musicians but played a different role.
3. Sacrifices (v.49) – These men had to have a specific skill. They had to know how to kill the animal. They had to know how to cut it. They had to know how to dissect it. And they had to know how to burn it. Such a delicate task required a skilled set of hands.
Everyone in the church has their own particular set of skills. Their own speciality that has been honed. A skill set that has been tested and tried. God has given each and every one of us a talent we must use. Whether it be singing, fixing, serving or teaching we should use it all for the glory of God.
“Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God. (1 Corinthians 10:31)
Because we are all gifted with talents from God we must all strive together to learn how to use our talents together for the best possible outcome. A church is composed of many people that have many different talents and it is essential that we learn to adjust and accommodate everyone in areas that they can most efficiently use their gifts.
“Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit” (1 Corinthians 12:4).
For example I have personally found out that I am not the best at comforting and counseling. So to put me in a position where I need to counsel people would be, for a lack of better terms, futile. To put a person who is not musically inclined leading a choir would be not the wisest decision. To put someone who does not know how to work in a kitchen to be in charge of a church dinner would not be the best. All these are examples of people without talents not in their area of expertise.
And we must not get confused by comparing talents or gifts. To think highly of yourself because God gifted you with a certain talent would be impractical .
“Are all apostles? are all prophets? are all teachers? are all workers of miracles?” (1 Corinthians 10:31)
We need to understand that everyone has a different gift and no one has a gift that is more important than another. All talents are to be used for the honor of Christ and not the honor of man. If we stop using our talents to lift ourselves up and start using our talents to uplift the Lord then foolish irrational comparings would cease to exist.
“For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think…”(Romans 12:3)
Many people think they have a very powerful gift that helps the church but when they constantly uplift themselves and never use their talent in the church the only gift they have is the gift of grievance. We must learn to start thinking about how smooth the church runs and not about our self-image.
If you are a Pastor of a church or in a position of leadership at a church I hope as you read this it helps you to analyze how your church / classroom / bus route is set up and see if you can make some changes or adjustments in order to maximize your effectiveness in reaching the lost world with the Gospel. If you’re a church member I hope that you are encouraged by this to find out what your talents are (if you do not know) and use them for the honor and the glory of Christ.
“If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.” (1 Peter 4:11)
Posted in Devotions by Micah Rice with 5 comments.
Listen to this morning’s Scripture song – Psalm 19
Read the “0506 Evening and Morning” devotion for today, by the late Charles Haddon Spurgeon
“The sons of Shelah the son of Judah were, Er the father of Lecah, and Laadah the father of Mareshah, and the families of the house of them that wrought fine linen, of the house of Ashbea, And Jokim, and the men of Chozeba, and Joash, and Saraph, who had the dominion in Moab, and Jashubilehem. And these are ancient things. These were the potters, and those that dwelt among plants and hedges: there they dwelt with the king for his work.” (1 Chronicles 4:21-23)
We can see in 1 Chronicles 3-4 that it goes through the genealogy of David’s sons and successors. We often read through these passages of Scripture in order to just get through the list of names and check it off of our reading list, but as I was reading through those difficult to pronounce names this thought struck my mind, “God put every name here for a purpose.” It seems like a simple thought, but I correlated it with “God put every person on this earth for a purpose.”
We so often look at the big picture, per say. We see people and names and faces, but we don’t often recognize who they are and why God placed specific talents and abilities in certain people for a reason, including ourselves. We can see in 1 Chronicles 4:23, after it goes on to list all the names. It says, “These were the potters, and those that dwelt among plants and hedges: there they dwelt with the king for his work.” We know that they are talking about the king that reigned during that time frame, but the thought is that we are all here on this earth ultimately to do the King’s work. We are all, when it comes to those who are saved, simply potters for the Lord’s use and if we personally choose to count that as an honor then there will be an automatic response of humility that follows. To be a potter for the Lord should be counted as a privilege and we should be able to find purpose in that.
We can see in chapter 5 where it talks about the sons of Reuben and in verse 1 it says: “Now the sons of Reuben the firstborn of Israel, (for he was the firstborn; but, forasmuch as he defiled his father’s bed, his birthright was given unto the sons of Joseph the son of Israel: and the genealogy is not to be reckoned after the birthright.” We see the importance of genealogy and birthright. God had a purpose for every single person He created for the time and purpose He created them. We can see in verse 1 when Reuben had sinned that it not only messed his life up, but also the genealogy that followed him. May it be a small reminder to be Christ-like in the way that we live, because in the end it does matter. God has a purpose; He has a plan and His ultimate desire is for us to follow and obey that which He has already put in place. Our heartbeat should be to find purpose in what He has called us to do, and then to live out His purpose in our lives all for His honor and glory.
Posted in Devotions by Moriah Rice with 4 comments.
Today’s Reading – 1 Chronicles 1 – 2 (Click on the references to listen to the audio – Click here to view the passage from Blue Letter Bible)
Listen to this morning’s Scripture song – Psalm 18:3 & 46
Read the “0505 Evening and Morning” devotion for today, by the late Charles Haddon Spurgeon
“And Boaz begat Obed, and Obed begat Jesse, And Jesse begat his firstborn Eliab, and Abinadab the second, and Shimma the third, Nethaneel the fourth, Raddai the fifth, Ozem the sixth, David the seventh:” (1 Chronicles 2:12-15)
After reading this passage, I just can’t help but think of the privilege it is to serve the Lord. If you’re saved today, aren’t you grateful to be playing for Jesus’ team!
In the passage, we see the lineage leading up to David, and we see he’s the youngest of seven brothers. The youngest son growing up around 6 older brothers most likely was not always a walk in the park. He probably had his days of getting bullied and made fun of, especially for being the youngest. Even when David went down to see the battle involving Goliath, he received ridicule from some of his brothers, even then.
Little did they, even David, know, how God would tremendously use David, not just that day amongst the giant, but even greater days lies ahead for him.
In a group of animals, a runt is a member which is significantly smaller or weaker than the others, making survival in the wild especially, almost impossible. We do not know how much smaller or weaker David was than his brothers, but in comparison to Jesus Christ, we are all runts!
We are all good for nothing sinners that deserved to get tossed aside and forgotten about! And without Him, we wouldn’t survive! Aren’t you grateful that as His focus was like a flint, unwavering, on the cross of Calvary, that you were on His mind!
We may not see the whole game, the big picture as Jehovah God does, but we can trust that He does. We can fully rely on and abide in our Alpha and Omega, the Author and Finisher of our faith.
Don’t take for granted the honor it is that we can call ourselves, Christians! We GET to serve Almighty God!
Aren’t you glad that God does not look on the outward appearance as man does! He doesn’t care how old or young you are— you can still serve Him!
He does not care how much you’ve messed up— you can still serve Him!
” Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.” (1 Corinthians 6:9-11)
We need to fall more and more in love with our God and His Word each and every day!
Love Him because He’s good, He’s wonderful. Love Him because He’s holy, perfect, and true! Love Him because… there’s nobody like Him!
“I am the LORD, and there is none else, there is no God beside me: I girded thee, though thou hast not known me: … For thus saith the LORD that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited: I am the LORD; and there is none else. … Tell ye, and bring them near; yea, let them take counsel together: who hath declared this from ancient time? who hath told it from that time? have not I the LORD? and there is no God else beside me; a just God and a Saviour; there is none beside me. Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else. I have sworn by myself, the word is gone out of my mouth in righteousness, and shall not return, That unto me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear.” (Isaiah 45:5, 18, 21-23)
Posted in Devotions by Gerald Hicks with 4 comments.
Today’s Reading – 2 Kings 20 – 22 (Click on the references to listen to the audio – Click here to view the passage from Blue Letter Bible)
Listen to this morning’s Scripture song – Joshua 1:8
Read the “0503 Evening and Morning” devotion for today, by the late Charles Haddon Spurgeon
“Thus saith the LORD, Behold, I will bring evil upon this place, and upon the inhabitants thereof, even all the words of the book which the king of Judah hath read: Because they have forsaken me, and have burned incense unto other gods, that they might provoke me to anger with all the works of their hands; therefore my wrath shall be kindled against this place, and shall not be quenched. But to the king of Judah which sent you to enquire of the LORD, thus shall ye say to him, Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, As touching the words which thou hast heard; Because thine heart was tender, and thou hast humbled thyself before the LORD, when thou heardest what I spake against this place, and against the inhabitants thereof, that they should become a desolation and a curse, and hast rent thy clothes, and wept before me; I also have heard thee, saith the LORD. Behold therefore, I will gather thee unto thy fathers, and thou shalt be gathered into thy grave in peace; and thine eyes shall not see all the evil which I will bring upon this place. And they brought the king word again.” (2 Kings 22:16-20)
After the Word of God was discovered in the Temple while renovations were being made, King Josiah realized that the southern kingdom of Judah was far away from where she once was, and where she should have been. The king is a great man and desperately wants to get things right with the Lord, so he goes to a woman, named Huldah, a prophetess, who explained to him that judgment was certainly in store for Judah for the sins of her past. However, the good news is that the coming judgment would be postponed until after the days of King Josiah. Why? Because his heart was tender, and he was greatly humbled before God. He was determined to do what was right and lead the people of God to submit to whatever God commanded them to do.
Fast forward a couple of hundred years, way past the time of Josiah, and also past the horrible judgment that was prophesied by the prophetess as well as by others. Jerusalem had been completely destroyed, including the Temple, and the people of God had been living in captivity for seventy years, first in Babylon and then in Persia. God now opens up a window for the people of God to go back into the land of Judah, rebuild the Temple and the City of Jerusalem, and worship and serve the Lord as God had commanded them through Moses. Ezra the priest was leading a remnant of the people of God in worship, and explained to them that God had given them grace for a “little space.”
“And said, O my God, I am ashamed and blush to lift up my face to thee, my God: for our iniquities are increased over our head, and our trespass is grown up unto the heavens. Since the days of our fathers have we been in a great trespass unto this day; and for our iniquities have we, our kings, and our priests, been delivered into the hand of the kings of the lands, to the sword, to captivity, and to a spoil, and to confusion of face, as it is this day. And now for a little space grace hath been shewed from the LORD our God, to leave us a remnant to escape, and to give us a nail in his holy place, that our God may lighten our eyes, and give us a little reviving in our bondage. For we were bondmen; yet our God hath not forsaken us in our bondage, but hath extended mercy unto us in the sight of the kings of Persia, to give us a reviving, to set up the house of our God, and to repair the desolations thereof, and to give us a wall in Judah and in Jerusalem.” (Ezra 9:6-9)
I believe that God will give America a space of grace as well, even though judgment is certainly warranted for our sins as a nation. We have forsaken God; we have tolerated, condoned, and even promoted all kinds of vile immorality; and we have murdered the unborn by the millions. Our country certainly has judgment in its future, and it may be that we are experiencing some of that right now through this pandemic. But, we can also get that space of grace, if we will simply humble ourselves and submit to the will of the Lord.
“If I shut up heaven that there be no rain, or if I command the locusts to devour the land, or if I send pestilence among my people; If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” (2 Chronicles 7:13-14)
Posted in Devotions by Phil Erickson with 1 comment.
Today’s Reading – 2 Kings 18 – 19 (Click on the references to listen to the audio – Click here to view the passage from Blue Letter Bible)
Listen to this morning’s Scripture song – Deuteronomy 32:4
Read the “0502 Evening and Morning” devotion for today, by the late Charles Haddon Spurgeon
Read a previous post from this passage – “Now You’ve Crossed the Line”
“Therefore thus saith the LORD concerning the king of Assyria, He shall not come into this city, nor shoot an arrow there, nor come before it with shield, nor cast a bank against it. By the way that he came, by the same shall he return, and shall not come into this city, saith the LORD. For I will defend this city, to save it, for mine own sake, and for my servant David’s sake. And it came to pass that night, that the angel of the LORD went out, and smote in the camp of the Assyrians an hundred fourscore and five thousand: and when they arose early in the morning, behold, they were all dead corpses. So Sennacherib king of Assyria departed, and went and returned, and dwelt at Nineveh. And it came to pass, as he was worshipping in the house of Nisroch his god, that Adrammelech and Sharezer his sons smote him with the sword: and they escaped into the land of Armenia. And Esarhaddon his son reigned in his stead.” (2Kings 19:32-37)
“And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.” (Genesis 12:3: God promising Abraham)
Good morning. With the attack of COVID-19 going on, it would be nice to have God’s hedge of protection on this nation again. When you touch something that belongs to God, in trying to steal it from God, you are in some serious trouble. The king of Assyria should have read Genesis before invading and trying to conquer God’s city of Jerusalem. God said that He would bless those who bless Abraham, and curse those who curse Abraham. The king of Assyria ended up dead by the hands of his two sons. We had this same protection once, until we started messing with Israel… England, damaging the Bush’s home and many others.
August 23, 1992, talks resume for Israel to surrender “Land for Peace.”
1991, President George H W Bush institutes his Land For Peace Plan. The result is “the Perfect Storm.” One hundred foot waves pound New Withing 24 hours, Hurricane Andrew hits causing $30 billion in damages to the U.S.
August 27 through September 13, 1993, Israel and the PLO work out a compromise peace plan in Washington, D.C. Our country is hit with the worst flooding in our history and $21 billion in damages.
August 25 through September 10, 2001, the U.S., Arabia, and Israel prepared the most comprehensive peace plan ever. God lifts His hand of protection, and the Twin Towers along with the Pentagon are attacked on September 11th, just before the plans were finalized. This cost the U.S. over $40 billion.
November 7 through 12, 2002, during Ramadan, President Bush hosted a dinner to honor Islam and the “revelation of God’s word in the holy Koran.” When officials flew to pressure Israel, 88 out of season tornadoes hit seven states.
In 2005, President George W. Bush pressured Israel to give up the Gaza strip. Israel did, and the next day Hurricane Katrina hit: the largest disaster in U.S. history. One million people were forced from their homes, and close to $200 billion in damages.
Now, in 2020, even though this is not against Israel, there have been almost 62 million abortions performed since Roe vs. Wade in the U.S. Sixty-two innocent children murdered since 1973. Do you think God is angry? There have been 60,057 deaths due to COVID-19 in the United States. All states have been affected by this virus. Here in New Jersey, 6,770 deaths have been attributed to COVID-19. The United States is not mentioned in the end times, in the Bible. I would like to think that all of America was caught up in the Rapture. But this is doubtful, unless of course, America goes back to her roots and we become one nation under God again. The Bible needs to be back in schools, teach the children that life is precious: that they didn’t evolve from swamp scum: they were created in the image of the Creator. Maybe then they will stop chasing after drugs, alcohol, and stop killing themselves, or each other. The Ten Commandments need to go back in our Federal Buildings, and our Courts. Then our judges can judge righteously, and not compromise. And most of all we need to support Israel, God’s chosen people. If we stay on the same path in which we are going we will end up like Sennacherib king of Assyria: dead!
“If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” (2Chronicles 7:14)
Posted in Devotions by Pastor Ted Stahl with 1 comment.