Monday, August 10, 2015

Monday, August 10th: Psalms 79-80, Acts 28 ~ Conrad

Today's passage from the Bible In a Year Reading Plan is Psalms 79-80; Acts 28

Psalm 79 starts off by painting a picture.  "O God, the nations have come into your inheritance;  they have defiled your holy temple; they have laid Jerusalem in ruins." (vs 1)

In verse 8 the psalmist asks God to "not remember against us our former iniquities;" as they are now a changed people.

The psalmist then expresses his thankfulness in verse 13, "But we your people, the sheep of your pasture,  will give thanks to you forever;  from generation to generation we will recount your praise."  We read yesterday the importance of remembering the help we have received from God, and this reminds us again of the importance of this as it is mentioned again - not only remembering today, but generation to generation.
In our NT passage Paul finds himself floating on planks of a boat.  He eventually ends up on shore with some people who are very friendly and prepare a nice meal for him to eat, and provide a fire for warmth.

I wonder how their initial impression of Paul was as it didn't mention that, however, when a snake jumps up and chomps down on Paul's hand, the people on the land thought Paul was a murderer and that justice was taking place.  When Paul was able to continue with no ill effects, these superstitious people change their opinions about Paul and decided that he must be a really good person - perhaps even a god.
This made me wonder how often do I make incorrect assumptions of people before really knowing who they are?    

After a few months on this land, Paul continues his journey to Rome.  Once there, he discovers that the Jewish leadership had not received any letters from accusers that preceded him. At this, Paul recognized his opportunity once again and wasted no time in sharing the story of salvation.  After Paul spoke to them, some believed and some did not, which caused some disagreements among them.  They departed after Paul had made this last statement: “The Holy Spirit was right in saying to your fathers through Isaiah the prophet:

“‘Go to this people, and say,“You will indeed hear but never understand,
and you will indeed see but never perceive.”
Paul knew that sharing God's plan of salvation would put his life at risk.  He also knew that many would not believe him.  Two strong reasons for him not wanting to do this, but that didn't stop him.

What an example he is to me in the fact that despite the fact that many do have closed ears, many others will hear and accept Christ.  This is something we are all called to do, and I pray that I will be obedient as Paul in stepping up, and being bold for Christ!

Tomorrow's Bible In a Year Passage passage: Psalms 81-83; 1 Peter 1


TammyIsBlessed said...

Another passage similar to the one I mentioned a few days ago, popped up at me again...

79:7 Help us, O God of our salvation,
for the glory of your name;
deliver us, and atone for our sins,
for your name's sake!

For God's glory, for His name - that should be our motivation for EVERYTHING.

In Acts, the people's opinion of Paul sure swings wildly - from murderer to a god! How often are our snap judgments just as far off?

Pamela said...

Do not remember against us our former iniquities;[a]
let your compassion come speedily to meet us,

Do not judge us for our past blessed we are that when God forgives he does without holding on to our past. When we forgive others, how hard it is to forget when the next time occurs. God doesn't do that. He restores us.

“You will indeed hear but never understand,
and you will indeed see but never perceive.”

How often do we hear something but never really music and then not really thinking about the lyrics? How often do we look at something without really seeing checking for the time and immediately forgetting. May we hear and see fully what God desires for us.