"God's Word is Living & Active!" ~ Hebrews 4:12
Jeremiah 4:19-6:15 ~ Colossians 1:18-2:7 ~ Psalm 77:1-20 ~ Proverbs 24:23-25
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Old Testament – Today in Jeremiah chapter 5 verses 14 through 17 we read God’s words to Israel about the coming of the armies of Babylon! “Therefore, this is what the LORD God Almighty says: “Because the people are talking like this, I will give you messages that will burn them up as if they were kindling wood. O Israel, I will bring a distant nation against you,” says the LORD. “It is a mighty nation, an ancient nation, a people whose language you do not know, whose speech you cannot understand. Their weapons are deadly; their warriors are mighty. They will eat your harvests and your children’s bread, your flocks of sheep and your herds of cattle. Yes, they will eat your grapes and figs. And they will destroy your fortified cities, which you think are so safe.”
“Babylon was indeed an ancient nation. The old Babylonian empire had lasted from about 1900 B.C. to 1550 B.C., and earlier kingdoms had been on her soil as early as 3000 B.C. Babylon in Jeremiah’s day would shortly rebel against Assyrian domination, form its own army, conquer Assyria, and become the next dominant world power.”
It is very interesting to see the rise of Babylon in history and how God foretold Israel that Babylon was coming. God gave Israel so many chances to repent, but Israel wouldn’t. Jeremiah in chapter 6 verses 10 & 11 today tells us – “To whom can I give warning? Who will listen when I speak? Their ears are closed, and they cannot hear. They scorn the word of the LORD. They don’t want to listen at all. So now I am filled with the LORD’s fury. Yes, I am weary of holding it in!”
It is amazing that Israel would not listen to words like these from God in verses 6 through 8 (though… maybe not so amazing… perhaps we can do a good job of ignoring God’s words & warnings in our lives today as well…?) – “This is what the LORD Almighty says: “Cut down the trees for battering rams. Build ramps against the walls of Jerusalem. This is the city to be punished, for she is wicked through and through. She spouts evil like a fountain! Her streets echo with the sounds of violence and destruction. Her sickness and sores are ever before me. This is your last warning, Jerusalem! If you do not listen, I will empty the land.”
New Testament – I love Paul’s teaching about the Christian life in Colossians chapter 1 verse 27 today! “For this is the secret: Christ lives in you, and this is your assurance that you will share in his glory.”
Paul’s teachings in Colossians chapter 2 verses 6 & 7 definitely stood out to me today: “And now, just as you accepted Christ Jesus as your Lord, you must continue to live in obedience to him. Let your roots grow down into him and draw up nourishment from him, so you will grow in faith, strong and vigorous in the truth you were taught. Let your lives overflow with thanksgiving for all he has done.” I absolutely love the thought of letting our roots grow down into Jesus and draw up nourishment from Jesus! Meditate on this thought for a while… I honestly haven’t really ever thought about “having roots in Jesus.” I mean, I certainly know Jesus is my Lord and Savior. I know Jesus lives within me. And I know the whole Chapter of John 15 about the vine & the branches has gotten me in the past to think about truly being attached to Jesus. But something about these verses from Paul about letting our roots grow down into Jesus really is profound for me today… How deep are your roots in Jesus today? Is there room for growth in your roots? Let us grow! And let us overflow with thankfulness!
Below is a powerful image from Colossians 1:18 from today’s readings:
Psalms – Today in Psalm 77 verses 11 and 12 we read – “I will remember the deeds of the LORD; yes, I will remember your miracles of long ago. I will meditate on all your works and consider all your mighty deeds.” I think these verses get at one of the amazing things about each of us reading the One Year Bible this year – both the Old & New Testaments. We are reading perhaps for the first time – or maybe the 17th time – about God’s miracles of long ago. We are “remembering” God’s miracles for our spiritual ancestors, for ourselves, and for those around us in our lives today whom we will teach about God’s saving love.
Proverbs – Interesting Proverbs today in chapter 24 verses 23 through 25 – “Here are some further sayings of the wise: It is wrong to show favoritism when passing judgment. A judge who says to the wicked, “You are innocent,” will be cursed by many people and denounced by the nations. But blessings are showered on those who convict the guilty.” As we know from our readings earlier this year, God cares a lot about judges – and that judges should judge justly. I have to believe that obviously most judges would agree with this Proverb. But… there’s likely some judges that may not follow this Proverb. That is a sad thing to consider. Here’s actually a thought that just popped into my mind here as I am typing this.
Please join us in memorizing and meditating on a verse of Scripture today: “To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. “ Colossians 1:27 NIV
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