Friday, March 27, 2015

Friday, March 27th: Proverbs 10-12, Titus 1 ~ Elizabeth

Today's passage from the Bible In a Year Reading Plan is Proverbs 10-12 and Titus 1

In today's Proverbs readings the material blessings enjoyed by families should be pursued by prudent and diligent work done honestly. God blesses such labor and uses it to provide for the needs of His people. We should be careful not to forget that it is God who provides us with all that we need to support our body and life. Likewise, we must never resort to wickedness or dishonesty in an attempt to secure a better profit for ourselves. The righteousness that comes through faith in Jesus not only delivers from death, but it also ensures that our heavenly Father will provide us with everything we need. The words we speak can be either a source of life and comfort, edifying those around us, or a source of strife and wickedness, stirring up hatred and division. Always choose your words prudently, being careful never to speak gossip, lies, or slander about another person. Defend those whose reputation is under assault and forgive those who sin against you. Jesus was a victim of false accusations; the blood He shed on the cross covers all of our offenses. Both the righteous and the wicked face tempests and challenges. Yet the righteous, who travel the way of the Lord and who live in the fear of the Lord, are blessed with stability, joy, and the promise of everlasting life. The Lord is you hope, health, stronghold, and way.

Proverbs teaches the wisdom of living by righteousness as taught by the Lord. Worldly logic tells us that we become wealthy by hoarding what we have. But God's Word tells us that true riches come to those who give generously. We should always return a portion of our income to the service of God (who gives us all things) and support our neighbors according tot heir need. After all, this is God's wonderful way of dealing with His children. He has generously given us all that we need, including the life of His one and only Son for our salvation.

Paul opens his Letter to Titus and the churches on Crete with a greeting that asserts his authority, recaps God's plan for salvation, and notes his personal bond with Titus. Most of his greeting revolves around the Gospel, because this is so central to Paul's life that he can hardly speak (or write) without mentioning it. God saves us from sin and condemnation and makes us fit for His kingdom. The only logical response to such love, grace, and generosity is, like Paul, to overflow with His praises and share this joyous news with others. Through Jesus Christ, the Father rescues us from our shortcomings yesterday, today, and tomorrow.

Step by step, Paul outlines the requirements for those who wish to lead as stewards of God's Church. Then he turns his focus to the false teachers, who do not measure up in understanding or teaching the truth, in their corrosive behavior, or in their motives. As living, active members of God's Church, potential leaders should aspire to know and understand His truth and to serve in the roles He provides. They and their families need to live a godly life that avoids empty talk, deceit, and any teaching that turns away from God's truth. Purity is a tall order, though, and we cannot make ourselves pure. Yet God steps into our lives and purifies us by His Gospel. Thank God that through Jesus Christ, He makes us pure and leads us through His trustworthy Word!

Tomorrow's Bible In a Year Passage passage: Proverbs 13-15; Titus 2


Pamela said...

A few verses stood out for me:
Whoever walks in integrity walks securely,
but whoever takes crooked paths will be found out.

It reminds me of going to the corn maze. When you stay on the path, it is level and cleared and free of obstacles. It is when you stray and try to take the short cuts that you leave behind evidence, find unexpected changes in elevation, and even mud puddles. You can't hide from these telltale signs.

A gossip betrays a confidence,
but a trustworthy person keeps a secret.

This is a hard one for me...I am so bad at keeping secrets!

Like a gold ring in a pig’s snout
is a beautiful woman who shows no discretion.

I think about modesty and teens. How can we teach our children that modesty is a way to please God in a society that doesn't care.

and finally:
15 To the pure, all things are pure, but to those who are corrupted and do not believe, nothing is pure. In fact, both their minds and consciences are corrupted. 16 They claim to know God, but by their actions they deny him. They are detestable, disobedient and unfit for doing anything good.

Have you ever added a drop of something into a glass of water? If examined, by itself the water still looks pure and yet side by side with an actual pure glass of water it is easy to see the difference. When "pureness" is spoiled it may not be easy to see the difference unless we compare it to ultimate purity. Therefore our actions too need to be compared to the ultimate example of perfect. Something we fall short of...every. single. time.

TammyIsBlessed said...

Thanks for your post Elizabeth. Logic according to the world is almost always at odds with logic according to the Word. If we are not living counter-culturally, we need to examine ourselves to see if we are truly pursuing righteousness.

Love those verses too Pamela!

This portion stood out to me especially....

16 They profess to know God, but they deny him by their works. They are detestable, disobedient, unfit for any good work.

Everyone is turned off by hypocrisy, but no one more so than God Himself. To claim His name but to live for ourselves, is taking His name in vain, ruining our witness, stealing from His glory, and is detestable in His sight. That is some strong language and a stern warning indeed!

Conrad said...

I found lots of verses that stood out for me, but narrowed them down to these:

"Reckless words pierce like a sword, but the tongue of the wise brings healing." Proverbs 12:18

What we say can be very impactual, as is what we don't say.

"He who seeks good finds goodwill, but evil comes to him who searches for it." Proverbs 11:27

We will find what we search for. Good or bad, we will find it.