A Son, A Servant, A Steward

God Will Judge with Equity

God Will Judge with Equity

To the choirmaster: according to Do Not Destroy. A Psalm of Asaph. A Song.

75 WE GIVE THANKS TO YOU, O God; we give thanks, for your name is near. We recount your wondrous deeds.

 2 “At the set time that I appoint I will judge with equity.
 3 When the earth totters, and all its inhabitants,
        it is I who keep steady its pillars. Selah
4 I say to the boastful, ‘Do not boast,’
        and to the wicked, ‘Do not lift up your horn;
5 do not lift up your horn on high,
        or speak with haughty neck.’”

6 For not from the east or from the west
        and not from the wilderness comes lifting up,
7 but it is God who executes judgment,
        putting down one and lifting up another.
8 For in the hand of the Lord there is a cup
        with foaming wine, well mixed, and he pours out from it,
        and all the wicked of the earth shall drain it down to the dregs.

9 But I will declare it forever;
        I will sing praises to the God of Jacob.
10 All the horns of the wicked I will cut off,
        but the horns of the righteous shall be lifted up.

God is the ultimate judge. No one else is. Only God. That is the message of this psalm. Where does this truth land on your life today?

Perhaps you find yourself haunted by a past in which you were a victim of some form of abuse.  God will judge. Maybe your life today is plagued by animosity from family members toward you.  God will judge. Perhaps you feel discouraged when you read or listen to the news and hear the media, and those whom they interview, twisting the truth. God will judge. All will be put right.

Or maybe you find yourself tormented by a conscience that knows you yourself to be the perpetrator of evil – of selfishness, of mean words, or relational withdrawal, of deceit. If so, repent and seek restitution with those whom you have wronged. But beneath it all, take heart in the greatest truth of God’s judgment: God judged his own righteous Son in place of us unrighteous rebels, so that any who turns to take refuge in him gets the future that Jesus deserves.

This, above all else, is reason to give thanks to God for is wondrous deeds (v.1).

Unbelievable?

Unbelievable?

I HAVE A FEW PODCASTS I like to listen to, particularly when I am driving around in my car. Recently, I came upon a weekly podcast called Unbelievable?   

It comes out of the UK and is hosted by Justin Brierley. I would like to recommend it to you. 

Sometimes on the podcast, Brierley facilitates debates between Christians and atheists, or Christians and those with other opinions on certain topics. It is a great way to learn how to talk about your faith. I really appreciate the respectful way he facilitates the conversation.   

Sometimes he addresses issues pertinent to our time: like COVID or matters of race. It is always very thoughtful and helpful. 

Give it a try.   

Here are a few episodes I found helpful: 

  1. Coronavirus conspiracies & rebel churches – September 11, 2020   

  2. A Skeptic in Narnia – August 7, 2020 

  3. John Lennox answers your questions on AI, science, atheism and faith - July 17, 2020

Enjoy!  Besides, everything always sounds better with a British accent.  

The Smell of Life

The Smell of Life

SMELL IS A POWERFUL SENSE. Researchers of odor memory (I didn’t know there was such a thing) talk about how smells trigger vivid memories. Can you think of a smell that triggers a positive memory for you?  

For me, my mind immediately goes to the smell of my grandfather’s pipe. It is a smell that conjures up all kinds of warm and pleasant memories. That is interesting to think about because for some, the smell of smoke from a pipe is far from pleasant.   

It reminds me of what Paul says in 2 Corinthians 2:15-16. For we are the aroma of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing, to one a fragrance from death to death, to the other a fragrance from life to life.”    

Carson says of this passage, “Paul insists that he does not himself change, depending on his audience. He is the same aroma; he proclaims the same Gospel, the same discipleship, the same Christ, the same way to live. Whether he is perceived to be a sweet fragrance or a foul stench does not depend on some change in him, but on the people who must deal with him.” (For The Love of God, Vol 1) 

Nonetheless, there is a “fragrant” way of life that we seek to live. In Ephesians 5:2, Paul calls us to “walk in love,” and then he points to the example of the love Jesus showed us. He described this act of love as a “fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.”   

When I read this passage, I immediately thought of this prayer. It expresses the kind of “fragrance” I want Christ to produce in my life.   

“O LORD, all treasures of wisdom and truth and holiness are stored up in your boundless being.  Grant that through our constant fellowship with you, those graces of Christian character may more and more take shape within me: 

The grace of a thankful and uncomplaining heart 
The grace to await your timing patiently and to answer your call promptly 
The grace of courage whether in suffering or in danger 
The grace to endure any hardship in the fight against evil 
The grace of boldness to stand up for what is right 
The grace of physical discipline 
The grace of truthfulness 
The grace to treat others as I would like them to treat me 
The grace of sensitivity, that I may refrain from hasty judgment 
The grace of silence, that I may refrain from thoughtless speech 
The grace of forgiveness toward all who have wronged me 
The grace of tenderness toward all who are weaker than myself 
The grace of faithfulness in continuing to desire that you will answer these prayers 
Amen and Amen.” 

May the smell of our lives trigger a vivid memory of God’s love. 

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