Archive | January 2020

Genesis 26:18 ” Isaac reopened the wells that had been dug in the time of his father Abraham, which the Philistines had stopped up after Abraham died, and he gave them the same names his father had given them.”

After Abraham’s death his enemies came and plugged up his wells to ruin them for any future use. They threw sand, rocks, old wood, dead animal carcasses and garbage into the holes… filling them up completely and leaving them inoperable.  And it says that it wasn’t until Isaac reopened them that the water flowed again.  What’s interesting in this verse is the word ‘reopened’ which has a two-fold meaning…it means to rediscover and to re-dig.  The enemy continues even today to try and plug-up our wells…not with sand and rocks, but with compromise, sinful habits, and worldly thinking.  As Jesus told the Samaritan woman at the well in John 4:10, ” If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked Him and He would have given you living water.”  Wells are necessary for the basic sustenance of life – water.  But when your well has been stopped up, the water can no longer flow and you become a barren, dry desert.

Isaiah 26:8 ” Yes, Lord, walking in the way of Your laws, we wait for You; Your name and renown are the desire of our hearts.”

The path we follow as Believers is narrow and fraught with potholes…some placed there by the enemy, others we’ve dug ourselves.  But no matter how difficult the course, it is the only way to righteousness and life.  And as we traverse this path, we will soon discover God’s plan and purpose for us is embedded not in the end result, but in the long and arduous process to get there.  For it becomes a daily decision of placing of our hope in our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, not in ourselves…of matching our heart’s desires to His not ours.  And as we journey along this way, we are reminded to exalt Him in Psalm 145:2 which says, “Every day I will praise You and extol Your Name for ever and ever.”

Galatians 1:6-7 ” I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the One who called you by the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel – which is really no gospel at all.”

Paul used the word gospel twice in this verse but both had very different meanings.  The first meant the Good News of the Gospel of Jesus Christ…that by way of His death, burial, and resurrection, we might have eternal life.  The second gospel could not have been farther from that truth.  It was distinctly different and deceptive and was leading the Church of Galatia astray.  In II Corinthians 11:13-15, Paul called these teachers, “false apostles and servants of Satan masquerading as apostles of Christ.”  They came proclaiming a ‘new and improved’ Gospel Message that was categorically incorrect and flawed, but the people were accepting it.  Paul here was charging them to be vigilant and discerning…for if the message did not proclaim justification by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone…it was a false gospel.

II Samuel 20:16 ” While they were battering the wall to bring it down, a wise woman called from the city, ‘Listen! Listen! Tell Joab to come here so I can speak to him.’ “

King David’s men had chased a troublemaker by the name of Sheba to the city of Abel-Beth-Maacah.  There they built a siege ramp and were attempting to bash down the city’s wall when this woman called out to them, “We are the peaceful and faithful in Israel, Why are you doing this?”  She became that voice of reason and in doing so saved the entire city from destruction.  It could be you’ve been pounding on a door to gain entry into something God has never ordained…forcing your selfish desires onto His plan…all the while knowing deep down it’s not what He desires.  Today it’s time to listen to that voice of reason when it asks, “Why are you doing this?” and then respond honestly.

II Peter 3:1 ” Dear friends, this is now my second letter to you. I have written both of them as reminders to stimulate you to wholesome thinking. “

Peter cared deeply for his friends and wrote to refresh their memories regarding the truth of God.  It’s so very sweet when I receive a text or email from a friend reminding me of the goodness of God and encouraging me to persevere in the hard place I  find myself.  Nothing is more uplifting than having a voice of reason that you trust giving clarity to your muddled thought process, not to mention a good pep talk!  Maybe there’s someone in your life today that could use the same kind of encouragement that Peter was giving his friends…in reminding them about the faithfulness of God.

Habakkuk 2:3 ” For the revelation awaits an appointed time; it speaks of the end and will not prove false. Though it linger, wait for it; it will certainly come and will not delay.”

Habakkuk was not happy with the injustice God’s people were going through and he made God fully aware of his displeasure in how God was handling it.  God’s reply back to him was essentially, “Wait, just consider Who I am and be silent.  I do not lie or change My mind and will always fulfill My Word.  When the time is right My Will will be revealed.”   God will never be obligated nor accountable to our ideas of how He should handle situations…that’s the sovereignty of God.  Our responsibility is to trust and as Psalm 27:14 tells us, “Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and (patiently) wait for the Lord.”

Hebrews 3: 7-8 ” So, as the Holy Spirit says: ‘Today, if you hear His voice, do not harden your hearts…’ “

When we have hardened our hearts, it’s difficult if nearly impossible for God’s Word to penetrate that tough exterior.   In Acts 28:27, Paul used the term “calloused hearts” when dealing with the unbelieving Jews in Rome as he quoted Isaiah 6:9-10 to them.  “You will be ever hearing but never understanding; you will be ever seeing but never perceiving. For this peoples’s heart has become calloused.”  Our hearts may acknowledge and even recognize that still small voice of the Holy Spirit…but when it comes time to heed His direction,  we quickly turn away, refusing to obey out of rebellion and selfishness.  And sadly, over time it becomes easier and easier not to obey the prompting of the Holy Spirit, for over time our hearts become more and more calloused.  So if today you hear His voice, trade in your heart of stone for a heart of flesh.