Monday, August 17, 2015

Monday, August 17: Psalms 97-99; Galatians 2 by Pamela

Today's passage from the Bible In a Year Reading Plan is Psalms 97-99; Galatians 2

A few things stuck out for me today:

Psalm 97 verses 5-6 The mountains melt like wax before the Lord,
    before the Lord of all the earth.
The heavens proclaim his righteousness,
    and all the peoples see his glory.

We've been road tripping to BC a few times and after growing up and living on the Prairies, the mountains seem to rise up and greet us with a majestic appearance. But even the firm standing mountains are created and can be destroyed by God. Have you ever watched a candle burn? Have you ever watched a wrapper melt in a campfire? The fire consumes it and it melts in submission. God has the consuming power of fire and even the mighty mountains are not match. One day that power will be evident in a very tangible way that no one can deny it and all the people, believers and non-believers alike, will melt in God's presence. We will be consumed by our unworthiness and God's holiness.

Psalm 98 verse 6: With trumpets and the sound of the horn
    make a joyful noise before the King, the Lord!

I love that this verse emphasizes "trumpet" and "horn". We are to worship God loudly and joyfully and make our praise known. It doesn't say to whisper or hum or play something that is barely audible. When you hear a trumpet or a horn it commands attention. Everyone will turn and look to where that sound is coming from. We should strive to make a joyful noise to our King in a way that attracts people to Him.

Psalm 99 verse 5-6 Moses and Aaron were among his priests,
    Samuel also was among those who called upon his name.
    They called to the Lord, and he answered them.
In the pillar of the cloud he spoke to them;
    they kept his testimonies
    and the statute that he gave them.

We are constantly reminded throughout the Bible about those who have journeyed before us. This allows us to reflect on what they've done, both in obedience and disobedience, and how God has been with them through all circumstances. I know that I don't often share with my children about my past walk with God and how it has shaped me. When we look back, reflect, and share what we have learned it makes it easier to see God's hand in situations over the long term.

From the NT:

Galatians 2:14 But when I saw that their conduct was not in step with the truth of the gospel, I said to Cephas before them all, “If you, though a Jew,live like a Gentile and not like a Jew, how can you force the Gentiles to live like Jews?”
It's hard to call someone out. It's so much easier just to raise your eyebrows and shake your head (or your finger) than it is to confront someone about something. Even worse, it is so easy to gossip and think about how much better we are than someone who would do that.

The reality is that we are all sinners. Sin separates us from God--whatever that sin may be. We need to stop judging people for sinning differently than we do. If we see a fellow believer straying from biblical truths we should, with love, challenge them and their choices. It won't be easy but we should desire to guide wrong back to right. The world is watching...and waiting for us to fail...and we will. Often and repeatedly. When we set an example of sinfulness we are not being the ambassadors for Christ that we need to be. When our conduct is not in step with the truth of the gospel it has dire consequences. May we acknowledge our sins and be accepting when our wrongs are brought to our attention and may we have the desire to change.

Tomorrow's Bible In a Year Passage passage: Psalms 100-102; Galatians 3


TammyIsBlessed said...

Great thoughts Pamela.

So true that we need to stop judging people for sinning differently than us, but at the same time lovingly challenge each other when necessary.

Judging people's hearts is up to God. But we are called to judge when actions are sin. This is a difference so many fail to see. They think all judging is wrong. The line is fine, but it is there. One is wrong and judgmental, but one is biblical and necessary.

Unity among believers is important, yes. But sin must be dealt with, and false teaching absolutely must be dealt with. When the gospel is at stake, we must speak up!

Conrad said...

Great posting and comment.

I also like verse 16 in Galatians:

"yet we know that a person is not justified by works of the law but through faith in Jesus Christ, so we also have believed in Christ Jesus, in order to be justified by faith in Christ and not by works of the law, because by works of the law no one will be justified."

True faith comes as a gift from God when we hear His word, and it naturally leads to a life of loving service to Him. I believe that part of the loving service to God would be holding each other accountable, and calling each other out in love.