Monday, February 17, 2020

SHEEP AND THE GOOD SHEPHERD

Today’s Reading: Jeremiah 50

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion).

For thousands of years sheep have fed on these grasses in the Jordan Rift Valley in Israel. Again and again the Bible likens us to sheep. I think I’ve found a sheep that represents me in this picture. Pick one out that may represent you! Where is the shepherd?

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

Key Verses: Jeremiah 50:6

My people have been lost sheep.

Their shepherds have led them astray;

They have turned them away on the mountains.

They have gone from mountain to hill;

They have forgotten their resting place.

Chapters 50 (today) and 51 (tomorrow) are the longest pronouncements of judgment against a people. The Chaldeans, with their capital city of Babylon (located about 80 km south of modern Bagdad, Iraq), were defeated by the Persians (Iran), and much of the city was destroyed. Sadam Hussein, former President of Iraq, was in the process of beginning to rebuild Babylon when he was removed from power. The rebuilding stopped. The prophecy of Jeremiah remains true to this day (50:39b)…”It shall be inhabited no more forever, nor shall it be dwelt in from generation to generation.”

Three times in today’s reading the Babylonians are referred to as “proud.” The images of their god, Bel Merodac (or Marduk, creator and sun god), were “broken in pieces” as verse two says. “Pride” can be traced to its source; Lucifer, the Archangel, was lifted up in “pride,” sought to be worshipped, and, as a result, was exiled from Heaven and banished to the earth. He has, by inspiring idolatry, sought to receive the worship that he was denied in Heaven. When Jesus came to us through the gateway of the Virgin’s womb, He modelled the opposite to this pride. For a New Testament reading, consider Philippians 2:5-11.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, Your Word tells me, “God resists the proud but gives grace to the humble” (James 4:6, 1 Peter 5:5). Also, You tell me that “Pride goes before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall” (Proverbs 16:18). I pray for Your grace so that I may humble myself before You. As I’ve just read in Philippians, Jesus is my Example of humility, and I pray this in His Name. Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

I’ve just been looking at the sheep in Reynold’s photograph. I identify with the one near the back of the flock that has its head up looking at the familiar paths. I can see those paths on the right. They are worn into the hillside by generations of sheep ascending and descending the slope. Perhaps the sheep with the raised head wants to head back home to the safety of the cave where the shepherd personally stands guard between the sheep and any approaching enemy. I’ve just read, as I’ve done hundreds of times before, John 10:1-18. I have total confidence in Jesus, the One Who said, “I am the Good Shepherd.” In contrast to our “Shepherd,” the people of God in Jeremiah’s prophecy had become as “lost sheep” because of shepherds who had led them astray. I’m singing just now Psalm 23: “The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want.” Here’s the song I’ve found online by Keith Green, my son Ron’s musical hero when he was a teenager (click here).

Yours because the “Good Shepherd” takes “Good” care of His own sheep,

David

P.S. When we travel with our friends in Israel I often have a little fun by taking the microphone on the bus and pointing out the worn paths on the hillsides, as in today’s picture. Then I’ll say that the forces of evolution over thousands of years have caused the legs of the sheep and goats to be shorter on one side than the other, because they are always on a hillside. I pause to let that sink in, and then I say, with a grin on my face, this gives the sheep trouble when they turn around and start for home (laugh here). This is an example of a warped sense of humour. With all the doom and gloom in our readings, it occurred to me that we could use a laugh. If you don’t find my story funny, please forgive me, like Norma-Jean does several times a day!

15 thoughts on “Monday, February 17, 2020

  1. Prayed David’s prayer and was sunken into the sheep photo. That’s us saints of the blog on that hillside. We are the sheep and He is our Good Shepherd. Yes, indeed, the root of all sin is pride and we give it up with all humility and humbleness. May His peace be with you, today, fellow saints. Happy Family Day.

    The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
    He maketh me to lie down in green pastures:
    he leadeth me beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul:
    he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.
    Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.
    Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies:
    thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.
    Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life:
    and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever. Psalm 23-28 KJV

    The Lord is My Shepherd – Keith Green
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MFLRMWlCOow

    • Thank you Beverlee, I also prayed David’s prayer. We are prone to wander like those sheep. I remember a hymn that has prone to wander in it but forget the words.
      My husbands’ favourite hymn is the Lord’s my Shepherd, he has a very nice siinging voice.
      Blessings to all of you, enjoy this day that the Lord has made. I feel that we are all family on this blog. Eleanor M.

    • God bless you Beverlee Kay and thank you for your postings;
      asking for healing prayers for my right hand; also asking for a financial blessing to pay all debts;help others;families;invest some for a better income
      SO THANKFUL FOR ALL THE LORD HAS DONE FOR US THIS DAY;’amen amen amen

      • Lord God, You alone have the power to fulfill Sah’s needs. You are the Jehovah Rapha, the God who heals. You forgive us all our sins and heal up our diseases. You are the Jehovah Jireh, the God who provides. You bring health and healing to your people and let us enjoy abundant peace and security. We call to You now for our sister-in-Christ Sah’s right hand and financial need and pray for Your blessings upon her. In Jesus’ mighty Name. Amen, amen, and amen.

        Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. John 14:27

  2. Scripture describes heaven as a place beyond description: “What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him” (1 Corinthians 2:9).
    Knowing that your home with God is more astounding than your finite mind can imagine may not help with the cold of February. But it does encourage us to live for the place where we will live forever.
    Whatever it costs us to be faithful to Jesus today will be more than repaid by Jesus one day. Our secularized society calls us to choose culture over Christ, but its enticements pale compared to the eternal significance of present faithfulness. Dr. Jim Denison

    Battle Hymn of the Republic:
    https://youtu.be/ORsNiReoCsw

    Praying for God’s abundant blessings on all believers and a Happy Family Day.

  3. Amen fellow saints! As Jeremiah prophesied the judgement on Babylon was swift and sure. May our loved ones and friends come to you with weeping and repentance and escape the judgement which is to come. We pray this in Jesus name. Amen!

  4. Dear Lord God, thank You for the sanity, peace, and rest we find in You. You are forever true and right, and You are the Way for us in life and even beyond death. Please help us to trust in You, and not look for answers in finite things. Please bless and strengthen all Your people today, Lord, and help us to choose Your good ways. In Jesus’s great name, amen

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