1 Chronicles 7:1-8:40 ~ Acts 27:1-20 ~ Psalm 7:1-17 ~ Proverbs 18:22
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Old Testament - We read some interesting verses to consider today in First Chronicles 8 verses 8 through 10: "After Shaharaim divorced his wives Hushim and Baara, he had children in the land of Moab. Hodesh, his new wife, gave birth to Jobab, Zibia, Mesha, Malcam, Jeuz, Sakia, and Mirmah. These sons all became the leaders of clans." These verses basically record polygamy & divorce by Shaharaim. However, just because these actions are recorded in the Bible, it does not mean they are condoned by God. Since the creation of Adam and Eve, God has meant for there to be one man with one wife. But, we humans don't always follow what God wants for us... (as we each well know) The Bible records both the good & the bad in human actions. If someone were to chronicle our lives today, would what the chronicle recorded be pleasing in God's sight? Don't worry so much about your past & past mistakes. God can forgive and redeem those, if you will turn to him in repentance. But right now - what would the chronicler capture in your life today? Would it be pleasing in God's sight? Would you want other people to read about your life today? Would you be comfortable with any aspect of your life showing up on the front page of tomorrow's news?
New Testament - Today in Acts 27 verses 1 & 2 we read: "When the time came, we set sail for Italy. Paul and several other prisoners were placed in the custody of an army officer named Julius, a captain of the Imperial Regiment. And Aristarchus, a Macedonian from Thessalonica, was also with us. We left on a boat whose home port was Adramyttium; it was scheduled to make several stops at ports along the coast of the province of Asia." A great map of Paul's journey to Rome is below:
In verses 10 & 11 Paul's wise advice about the storm is not heeded: ""Sirs," he said, "I believe there is trouble ahead if we go on--shipwreck, loss of cargo, injuries, and danger to our lives." But the officer in charge of the prisoners listened more to the ship's captain and the owner than to Paul." I wonder about this in our lives today - are we like the officer in charge of the prisoners and ignoring Paul's advice? Do we hear Paul's advice to us in his Epistles, and yet are we ignoring it? Are we instead paying attention to the ship's captain, or the world, rather than Paul, when a storm is indeed bearing down upon us?
Bible.org's commentary on today's Acts readings titled "A Biblical Look at Leadership" is at this link.
Psalms - Today in Psalm 7 verse 10 we read: "God is my shield, saving those whose hearts are true and right." What stood out to me here is that it does not say that God saves those who "do" what is true and right. It says that God saves those whose "hearts are" true and right. As discussed in yesterday's Matthew 5 post, below, this is getting toward our interior motives and thoughts and hearts - the important thing is not what we do on the "exterior", but who we are on the "interior". And then certainly if our hearts are true and right, a natural outflow of this is doing good things on the exterior. But, it's the interior - our hearts - that matter most. How is your heart these days? Is it true and right? And do you believe that God is indeed your shield?
Proverbs - Proverbs 18 verse 22 I believe is a two way street: "The man who finds a wife finds a treasure and receives favor from the LORD." And the woman who finds a husband finds a treasure and receives favor from the Lord! I think all of us are fortunate to find a wife or husband. The sad thing of course in our world today is that marriages statistically are not lasting. I believe the divorce rate is around 50% now? Pretty high to say the least... My thought is that God needs to be the center of any marriage for it to really last. Really, God needs to be in the center of anything we do in our lives for it to truly last... Is God in the center of all areas of your life today?
Today's Proverb does remind me of a book I just finished reading - Joshua Harris' "Boy Meets Girl: Say Hello to Courtship." Has anyone else read this book or other Josh Harris books? I'd love to get your reactions in the Comments section below. The reason being is that I have many friends who say Josh's views are "extreme" and should be heeded with caution. I guess I can see their points, but honestly, I loved the book! I thought Josh did a great job talking about how our relationship with God is the first and foremost priority before marriage. If we're not healthy with God, we won't be healthy in a marriage relationship. In one chapter in particular in the book Josh does a great job leading a meditation on what Jesus did on the Cross for us - just how significant the Cross is... Not something I'd expect from a book titled "Boy Meets Girl!" :) In any case, I do recommend this book to anyone who is single. Maybe it would be good for married's to read too. But for singles I think it gives you a lot of great food for thought about relationships - including first and foremost your relationship with the Lord!
Worship God: Today's readings in Acts 27 and Psalm 7 remind me of Laura Story's song "Blessings:"
What if your blessings come through raindrops? Click here for the most amazing blessing you could ever imagine!
Please join us in memorizing and meditating on a verse of Scripture today: "My shield is God Most High, who saves the upright in heart. " Psalm 7:10 (NIV)
Prayer Point: Pray that God is your shield that has saved you. Pray for an upright heart. Pray that your lost family and friends come to a saving faith in Jesus and will then have God as their shield.
Comments from You & Questions of the Day: What verses or insights stand out to you in today's readings? Please post up by clicking on the "Comments" link below!