(click on the date above for today's readings)
Ezekiel 47:1-48:35 ~ 1 Peter 2:11-3:7
Psalm 119:49-64 ~ Proverbs 28:12-13
Old Testament - We finish the book of Ezekiel today! :( I have enjoyed reading this book immensely this year. I am now wanting to experience some funky Ezekiel-type visions! :) (yes, I know that I should be very careful on what I ask for here...)
Ezekiel chapter 47's opening verses on the River of Healing are just beautiful. As I was reading these verses I imagined myself jumping into the river and just being refreshed and renewed and restored! Great stuff... This river is very reminiscent of the river in the Garden of Eden - and the River described in Revelation 22. And this river reminds me a bit of a new David Wilcox song called "In This Stream" - beautiful tune - click here for lyrics. Verse 9 in ch. 47 here sums it all up well - "Everything that touches the water of this river will live. Fish will abound in the Dead Sea, for its waters will be healed. Wherever this water flows, everything will live." Can you imagine this river of healing flowing from the temple? Can you imagine some rest & restoration & refreshment & healing through this river?
Ezekiel chapter 48's last words - and the last words in the book of Ezekiel are simply this - "And from that day the name of the city will be `The LORD Is There.'" In Hebrew this is Yahweh Shammah. The Hebrew pronunciation of Jerusalem is Yerushalayim - which could be a wordplay on Yahweh Shammah. Jerusalem = The Lord is There...
New Testament - 1 Peter 2 verse 11 is powerful - "So I warn you to keep away from evil desires because they fight against your very souls." Do you believe evil desires fight against your soul? If so, will you keep away from evil desires? Will you not entertain those desires anymore?
Verse 24 today about Jesus is so strong - "He personally carried away our sins in his own body on the cross so we can be dead to sin and live for what is right. You have been healed by his wounds!" Are you dead to sin? Are you living for what is right? Do you believe you have been healed by Jesus' wounds? Will you accept this healing? Will you be healed?
Psalms - I am continuing to love every verse we read in Psalm 119! Verse 59 today is a great verse for each of us to consider - "I pondered the direction of my life, and I turned to follow your statutes." Have you ever reached a mid-life or maybe even a quarter-life crisis where you pondered the direction of your life? Did you like the direction your life was heading? Did you want to change that direction? Will you turn to follow God's way? God's truth? God's life for you? Do you believe that God's plans for you are so much bigger than any plans of your own that you could dream up?
Proverbs 28 verse 13 is a great reminder to confess our sins for a great reason - "People who cover over their sins will not prosper. But if they confess and forsake them, they will receive mercy." Will we confess our sins? Forsake them? And receive mercy?
What verses or insights jumped out for you in today's readings? Please post up in the Comments section below!