Thursday, September 17, 2015

Thursday, September 17th: Amos 1-3, John 7:1-27 ~ Tammy

Today's passage from the Bible In a Year Reading Plan is Amos 1-3; John 7:1-27

We know the difference between right and wrong, and yet we do wrong anyway.  Amos exposes the wicked deeds of the nations for what they are - wicked deeds that deserve to, and will be, punished.  And the nation of Israel will be punished right alongside the pagan nations surrounding them because they are just as guilty - in fact, they are actually more guilty because they committed their sins against light and privilege.  They very well knew better.

Even as believers, we continue to sin.  As Rayburn says.... 

the way to ensure that we do not come to take those sins lightly or to allow ourselves to indulge them is precisely to hear, over and over again, what God thinks of those sins and what he does to those who commit them who do not repent and forsake them.

And we could say the same thing about God’s wrath. It is as important for Christians to remember as it is for the world to learn in the first place that the God of the Bible, the Creator of heaven and earth, the living and true God, is equally a God of love and justice, of mercy and holiness, of grace and vengeance. The fear of God is not for unbelievers only, but, usually in the Bible, for Christians. In our hearts that fear of God is tempered wonderfully by the knowledge of his grace, mercy, and fatherly affection for his people – we encounter God through Jesus Christ who suffered and died for our salvation – but the requirements of his holiness remain. Indeed, there never would have been a cross apart from the inflexible demands of God’s holy justice. It is true that, as in Toplady’s hymn, the wrath of God “with me can have nothing to do” since “my Savior’s obedience and blood hide all my transgressions from view.” But still the wrath of a sin-hating God must remain a permanent part of the consciousness of a Christian. [Motyer, 32] It keeps him from taking his salvation for granted; it keeps him hard at work killing his sins and putting on righteousness in his daily life; and it keeps him alive to the fact that the world around him is doomed and that he must live his life as an ambassador of the gospel of Christ. “Work out your salvation with fear and trembling,” Paul writes, “knowing that it is God who is in you…”

Divine judgment is coming.  It's not a matter of if, it's a matter of when.

The world does not want to hear this news nowadays, and it didn't in Jesus' day either, as see clearly in our John passage.  The world hates Jesus and we can expect that many people will hate us for following Him and exposing evil to the Light.  If we never experience any opposition at all in our lives, it may be time for some introspection to see if we're only following Jesus half-heartedly.

Tomorrow's Bible In a Year Passage passage: Amos 4-6; John 7:28-53


Nathan Reimer said...

Using the divine judgement that's coming as a motivator to do what God wants is good.

Conrad said...

"Do not judge by appearances, but judge with right judgment." Matthew 7:24

Like you said Tammy, divine judgement is coming.

Pamela said...

13 “Behold, I will press you down in your place,
as a cart full of sheaves presses down.
14 Flight shall perish from the swift,
and the strong shall not retain his strength,
nor shall the mighty save his life;
15 he who handles the bow shall not stand,
and he who is swift of foot shall not save himself,
nor shall he who rides the horse save his life;
16 and he who is stout of heart among the mighty
shall flee away naked in that day,”
declares the Lord.

One day, all our earthly gains will pass away. Our talent, our strength, our abilities can never cover the depth of our unworthiness. When all is stripped away...what will God see in me?