2 Samuel 11:1 – In the spring, at the time when kings go off to war…David remained in Jerusalem. (NIV 1978)
My Musing – He did not go where he was supposed to go. He stayed behind when he should not have. We know the results in David’s life – adultery, murder and the loss of a baby. All of which may have been avoided if he had not stayed behind.
My Advice – When God is moving in your life, make sure you do not linger and stay behind. It may not always result in something as severe as what happened in David’s life, but at the very least you will miss out on blessings you might have otherwise enjoyed, or have blessings delayed that might have otherwise come more quickly.
PUTTING IT ALL IN PERSPECTIVE – Putting some of the things we learned from “Taming The Terminology” into perspective might look something like Figure 1.10.
Next Up – As Figure 1.10 suggests, there will be a variety of signs, or “birth pains” leading up to the tribulation and Jesus’ return. Many of these signs were shared by Christ in His Olivet discourse. In chapter 2 we will study these signs, before “officially” beginning our Studies in Revelation in chapter 3. As we do, periodically you may want to refer back to Chapter 1, “Taming The Terminology,” as we dig deeper into our “Studies In Revelation.” Continue reading “Last Days And End Of the Age”
The Heavy Hand Of God?
2 Samuel 7:14, 15 – “I will be his Father and he will be My son. When he does wrong, I will punish him. But My love will never be taken away from him.” (NIV 1978)
My Musing – God will discipline us and correct us when we do wrong. But during the discipline and correction, God’s love will never disappear. In reality, the fact that He disciplines us and corrects us is proof of His love.
My Advice – Do not mistake the heavy hand of God for His disapproval of you. He loves you. He may disapprove of things you do, and deal with those things, but He will never take His love away from you.
ABOMINATION OF DESOLATION – “So when you see standing in the holy place ‘the abomination that causes desolation,’ spoken of through the prophet Daniel—let the reader understand” (Matthew 24:15). The word abomination is typically associated with pagan idolatry and its detestable practices (Deuteronomy 29:16–18; 2 Kings 16:3–4; 23:12–14; Ezekiel 8:9–18). The phrase “the abomination of desolation” likely refers to Continue reading “Abomination Of Desolation”
Exodus 16:2 – In the desert, the whole community grumbled against Moses and Aaron. The Israelites said to them, “if only we had died by the Lord’s hand in Egypt! There we sat around pots of meat and ate all the food we wanted, but you have brought us out into the desert to starve this entire assembly to death.” (NIV 1978)
My Musing – Anyone who has ever gone on a long road trip or vacation by car can likely relate to this cartoon. My dad would say, ‘if I have to stop this car…” In all my years of growing up, my brothers and I never heard the rest of that sentence. We never had to.
The Israelites had a short memory, having come from slavery. Like the Israelites, we have a tendency to focus on our present circumstances and remember the past as perhaps better than it really was. This is a form of ingratitude like “what have you done for me lately God,” or “why are you letting this happen to me now God.”
My Advice – We may face many “road trips” and “desert wanderings” in this life. They all have a purpose that God will use to grow our character. Let’s do our best to focus less on present circumstances and what is and more on God working in our lives to make them what can be. And while we are at it, let’s not be revisionists about our past, but focus on the reality of how God was with all along, with deliverance from our slavery to sin as He takes us through our own desert wanderings on the road to “the promised land.” “[F]or it is God who works in you to will and act according to His good purpose,” so “[d]o everything without complaining or arguing” (Philippians 2:13, 14 – NIV 1978). Because we really do not want Him to “stop this car” or “turn our Exodus around.”
Epilogue: Attaining To The Whole Measure
Prepare God’s people, so that we all become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ. (Ephesians 4:12, 13)
A: Discovering the Truth
B: Exploring the Truth
Justification – Like Paul, we must realize that we have not yet been made perfect. We have been saved. This was a past event, never to be repeated, where once and forever God made it “just as if I’d never sinned.” Continue reading “Attaining To The Whole Measure”