A HOLY PEOPLE
Today’s Reading: Deuteronomy 25-26
Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion on the right-hand side).
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Key Verse: Deuteronomy 26:19
…and that He will set you high above all nations which He has made, in praise, in name, and in honor, and that you may be a holy people to the Lord your God, just as He has spoken.
We are a “holy people.” Believing in Jesus and following Him makes this a fact. Ephesians 2:21 calls us, “a holy temple.” To see how special we are in God’s eyes, read Ephesians 2:11-22.
Two practices stand out in today’s reading. First, the sandal and the kinsman redeemer. Note Deuteronomy 25:9 and then turn to a wonderful love story, Ruth chapter 4. Note verse 7 (click here). Second, paying the tithe, 10% of our increase. To read more about this practice, we may want to read Malachi 3:6-12. This last book in the Hebrew Scriptures has much to say about giving. The Greek Scriptures, our New Testament, speaks of giving in many places. The one that comes to mind is 1 Corinthians 16:2, where Paul encourages us to set aside our offerings on the first day of each week. It seems that the early believers in Jesus paid the tithe (they were all Jews) and then did much more in offerings above their tithe. Remember the words of Jesus to the rich young ruler. Jesus was asking for his all (Mark 10:17-22). Our question should not be, “How much should I give?” but, “How much of that which You, Lord, have given me should I use for myself?” Let’s meditate on that thought.
PRAYER FOR TODAY:
Lord God, please give me the grace of disciplined consistency in listening to You as I read Your Word each day and in faithful fervency as I talk with You in my prayer time. May I see spiritual input in my life to be even more important than physical food and drink. In Jesus’ Name I pray, Amen!
100 PERSONAL WORDS:
Because of the practice of giving produce to God, I asked my son, Reynold, for a garden picture. The Garden of Gethsemane was the place where Jesus gave everything back to His Father.
I find it interesting that throughout this present age, the age of the Church, a wide variety of giving practices has been employed. For example, my Father, Rev. Dr. Roy Mainse, in his ordination commitments, was not to own property personally. He was 40 when I was born in 1936, and he wrote that while his brothers received an inheritance, such as the family farm, he would not receive an inheritance. He was in the ministry (Methodist/Holiness Movement) and his needs were provided by the congregations, college, and missionary society which he served. During my time as a boy living at home, the residence, complete with old furniture from the 19th century, was provided. I remember the red-letter day when Dad came home with a new fridge. We actually owned it. Things changed along the way, and Dad and my step-mother owned a home when Dad retired. He passed away 42 years ago next month. I’m older now than he was when God took him home. He was removing the snow from his driveway and steps when his heart simply stopped. My memories of his total dedication to the cause of Christ are a motivation for me in my service to God and people.
Yours for learning how to give back to God that which He has given me,
P.S. Yesterday I wrote that I wanted to see all my blog readers on a webcast show I’m hosting tomorrow night along with my son Ron (how I wish TV was two-way, so I could actually see you!). This webcast will be a first for me. It’s known as “narrowcasting” as opposed to “broadcasting,” because it will be streamed live just to those who we invite to visit the web address. I don’t have the address myself yet, but God willing I’ll be able to give it to you on tomorrow’s blog, and I hope and pray you’ll tune in Tuesday evening at 8 p.m. Eastern Standard time. (That goes from 5 p.m. on the west coast to 8 p.m. for my Florida friends and 9:30 p.m. for my friends in Newfoundland). God willing we’ll open the phone lines, and I hope to hear from every time zone across the continent. If you didn’t get to read yesterday’s blog, I’ll explain the purpose in the first 5 minutes of the live webcast. Happy New Year…almost!!!