~ Click on this link for today's readings ~
Jeremiah 26:1-27 ~ 2 Thessalonians 3:1-18
Psalm 85:1-13 ~ Proverbs 25:16
Old Testament - Well, today in Jeremiah 26 we are reminded again how tough it is to be a prophet - they want to kill him! Interesting series of events with the courts and priests. It reminds me of some ways of Christ and his last hours. Except that Jeremiah of course gets reprieved. However, at the end of the chapter we hear about the prophet Uriah and he was not so fortunate. He was chased into Egypt (interesting escape into Egypt parallel w/ Christ's early life?), captured and killed. The lesson for us in this chapter 26 may be this - when we are confronted with a call to repent from sins, do we? Or do we rage back and accuse the accuser of sins? Do we repent or do we deny?
Jeremiah Chapter 27 seems to be a chapter of "obedience" to me. Jeremiah is called once again to be obedient to preach - and to wear an ox yoke this time! And the people of Judah are called to be obedient to the Babylonian conquest. Let it happen. Be exiled. And eventually you will return. Fight this call to obedience - and you will die. I know obedience is not a very popular term in our culture today. But, I do think it is still so relevant to our relationship with God. In what area of your life is God calling you to be obedient? Will you be obedient? Below is a portrait by Guy Rowe of Jeremiah's obedience of wearing a yoke:
New Testament - Second Thessalonians chapter 3 is a nice closing chapter to this 2nd letter of Paul's! The first few verses remind us of the need to pray. Pray for those doing the Lord's work. How are you doing in praying for your pastors, your church, other ministries you support?
Paul then goes into an exhortation for proper living. These verses remind me of the importance of work in our lives. We are not called to be blissful aesthetics - but called to work. Paul worked hard during his time of ministry. He was at times a "tentmaker" - making a living during the day and preaching and conducting ministry in the evenings and weekends. How are you doing with work these days? Are you giving your all / your 100% for the hours you are at work? No matter where you are working - are you working as if you were working for God?
Bible.org's commentary on today's readings in Second Thessalonians chapter 3 titled "Final Exhortations Regarding Idleness in the Church" is at this link.
Psalms - Psalm 85 is awesome today! So many great verses.... I love verse 8 - "I listen carefully to what God the LORD is saying, for he speaks peace to his people, his faithful ones. But let them not return to their foolish ways." I like that thought - God speaks peace to his people. Are we listening carefully to what God is saying? Are we receiving his peace into our hearts? And so importantly - are we not returning to our foolish ways? Verse 6 reminds me of the Jeremy Camp tune "Revive Me", which is an amazing tune - "Won't you revive us again, so your people can rejoice in you?" Do you need God to revive you? Will you pray for revival?
Proverbs - Today in Proverbs 25 verse 16 we read – “If you find honey, eat just enough— too much of it, and you will vomit.” This is a great argument for not eating junk food! :) Well, a little bit is okay on occasion – but not too much! Seriously, I do think we should be mindful of what we are eating. There are so many studies out there that show that so many of us are not eating well. We are eating way too much “honey.” I simply pray that each of us realizes that our body is a temple that is indwelled by the Holy Spirit. We should not worship our bodies. But we should not neglect them either. Let us care for our bodies so that we may serve God and serve others for a long while in this life. God has so many great things for you to do in this life – please eat healthy and exercise regularly so that he can work through you fully and for a good length of time. I think the culture sells us junk food – just like it sells us sexual immorality or materialism. These things might seem appealing on the surface initially – but give them too much attention and they can literally kill you. Leave the junk food alone. Eat God’s good food that’s good for you! How are your eating habits these days? How is your exercise life? Is God calling you to improve in either your eating habits or your exercise habits? Why might it be a very good idea to improve your eating habits or exercise habits?
Comments from you - What verses or insights stand out to you in today's readings? Please post up by clicking on the "Comments" link below!