Friday, May 1, 2020

THE GREAT KING

Today’s Reading: Malachi 1-2

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

 

This is St. Lazarus Church built at the location where Jesus raised Lazarus from the grave. The depiction behind the altar is of Jesus, the resurrection and life. The village in which the church is located on the eastern slope of the Mount of Olives is called to this day by the local people, El Lazaria. After 400 years of prophetic silence, the people recognized that in Jesus a mighty prophet, and more than a prophet, Immanuel (“God with us”) had come to them (John 11).

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

 

Key Verses: Malachi 1:14b, 2:10b

“For I am a GREAT KING,”

Says the Lord of hosts,

“And My name is to be feared among the nations.”

…Why do we deal treacherously with one another

By profaning the covenant of the fathers?

 

Almost 100 years had passed since the Temple was rebuilt and since the people had heard the powerful preaching of Haggai and Zechariah. Malachi tells us that the priests had grown tired of the daily routine and that corruption was evident. This was manifested in the failure to pay their tithes and give their offerings (reading for tomorrow), as well as their marriages to wives who were not followers of the true God. Some had divorced their Jewish wives and married foreign women.The leaders in the Temple were going through the motions of worship, even showing strong emotions (Malachi 2:13). Covering “the altar of the Lord with tears” was not acceptable to God when at the same time they were living in sin as shown by their unfaithfulness in their marriages. The last four verses in today’s reading point this out. As shown in our key verses, the people no longer feared God as they once did. They were profaning, showing disrespect and irreverence for the Covenant (the most solemn and binding commitment possible between two parties), which their fathers had made with God. The evidence of this was in their disobedience to God, going through the motions of worship, even showing strong emotions, but living in sin continually.

The “love” and “hate” spoken of in Malachi 1:2 refers to Jacob (Israel) and the neighbouring nation of Edomites, descendants of Esau, the brother of Jacob. We know from many Scriptures that God loves the individual person but hates the sin represented by the persistent evil practised by nations in their culture and deeds. Yes, Israel sinned too, but the difference was that Israel repented of her sins on a regular basis and reversed corrupt practises, lining up with God’s Word every three or four generations. May God grant us another wave of repentance and obedience to His unchanging Word!

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, I confess You as my “Great King!” I recognize Your absolute authority over my life. My tears do not prove repentance; obedience does! I pray that the grace to repent, to turn away from living in sin, will be manifested 24/7 in my life. I ask this in the Name of the One who never sinned and, therefore, had no need of repentance, the Lord Jesus Christ. Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

The “wife of my youth” (Malachi 2:14-15) was 19 and I was 22 when we entered what I regard as an unbreakable covenant, our marriage. She is sleeping as I write this in the early morning. We’ll be married 58 years this coming September 19th. She spends much time in prayer before she sleeps.  I’m too sleepy then, so I have my prayer time when I awake refreshed most mornings  (at my age, 79, an afternoon sleep is essential!). Billy Graham’s wife, Ruth, summed it up in a humorous way when she was asked if she ever considered divorce from Billy. She said, “Murder sometimes, but divorce never!” When Norma-Jean and I gave our word (our most sacred possession) “until death do us part,” it meant just that. Obedience to our covenant with God means working through the problems and never giving up!

The other evidence of withdrawing from obedience to God is in the area of tithing…that 10% off the top of our entire income. Malachi points out that failure to PAY our tithes is actually stealing from God, as it is His, not ours. I’m jumping ahead here to Malachi 3 because of its extremely important message. These are almost the final words of the Bible which Jesus and His Apostles read and believed. We begin to GIVE back to God only when we give offerings over and above the tithe (alms for needy people, as well as for soul-winning ministries such as Crossroads, etc.). Obedience to God is a must, both in our marriages and in our tithes and offerings. Jesus and His disciples would have read Malachi and put into practice the teaching on tithes and offerings. I make no apologies for believing that these two areas of human behaviour represent the minimum level of commitment to God so that, as my father prayed in my hearing every day when I was a child, “O God, may the smile of Your approval be on my life this day.”

Yours for a revival of faith and obedience in every generation, not just every 100 years,

David

14 thoughts on “Friday, May 1, 2020

  1. MAY

    Oh Jesus, I Have Promised, 1868
    by John E. Bode (1816-1874)

    “O Jesus, I have promised
    To serve Thee to the end;
    Be Thou forever near me,
    My Master and my Friend;
    I shall not fear the battle
    If Thou art by my side,
    Nor wander from the pathway
    If Thou wilt be my Guide.

    Oh, let me feel Thee near me;
    The world is ever near;
    I see the sights that dazzle,
    The tempting sounds I hear;
    My foes are ever near me,
    Around me and within;
    But, Jesus, draw Thou nearer,
    And shield my soul from sin.

    Oh, let me hear Thee speaking,
    In accents clear and still,
    Above the storms of passion,
    The murmurs of self-will;
    Oh, speak to reassure me,
    To hasten, or control;
    Oh, speak, and make me listen,
    Thou Guardian of my soul.

    O Jesus, Thou hast promised
    To all who follow Thee
    That where Thou art in glory
    There shall Thy servant be;
    And Jesus, I have promised
    To serve Thee to the end;
    Oh, give me grace to follow,
    My Master and my Friend.

    Oh, let me see Thy footmarks,
    And in them plant mine own;
    My hope to follow duly
    Is in Thy strength alone.
    Oh, guide me, call me, draw me,
    Uphold me to the end;
    And then to rest receive me,
    My Savior and my Friend.”

  2. Amen to today’s blog. I am re-posting this from yesterday:

    Here is a link to emojies of all kinds to copy and paste, if anyone is interested: https://getemoji.com/

    This is for our rainy day: 🌂
    This is for our hands that pray: 🙏🏻
    This is for our Saviour’s love: 🤍
    As He blesses us from above: ✝️

    That hardly seems like enough fun for Friday, so I challenge everyone to make a prose and include emojies with it.

  3. I often wonder how Norma Jean is doing and found this great video on Youtube.
    https://youtu.be/4pagVyz-O6o

    Such a beautiful poem Beverlee. Thanks so much for sharing and I love emojis. I text my sister daily and we are always sending each other emojis. I love them and as they say “a picture is worth a thousand words:-)”

    Blessings all dear saints. Cold here in W.C. Alberta but sunny. I just plain can’t complain after listening to this video:

    Beautiful photo of the church, thanks again Reynold. God bless.

    53 years in a wheelchair…a woman of God. Reminds me of Charles Krauthammer incident.
    https://youtu.be/iPFj1WbnBfU

  4. Beverlee, you are sweet 🍬
    We so appreciate it 😊
    Daily, you send us a treat 🎁
    And we bless you for it 🙏
    As you can tell, poetry is not one of my strengths, ( unlike you, William and others)

    As I was reading today’s scripture, I thought how sad that the last message God gave to His people before the long, 400 -year silence, was not one of jubilation over their actions but rather one of displeasure. I sincerely pray the prayer of David’s father : “ may the smile of Your approval be on my life, this day, oh Lord”

    Praying 🙏for all of you , dear friends.

  5. Dear Lord God, thank You that things are starting to reopen. Please help people everywhere to get back to work and to pay their bills. Help children to honour their parents, and help parents to honour You so they can be good role models for their children. We pray that knowledge of You will cover the Earth; that Your Word goes out freely and clearly so many will hear You calling them to You. In Jesus’s name, amen

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