God Sends An Evil Spirit

Daily Scripture readings for September, set #15:

Judges 8
Psalm 85
Mark 6:14-29
1 Corinthians 10:1-13

How great must Gideon’s character have been to have declined to be leader of all Israel. “Gideon said to them, ‘I will not rule over you, and my son will not rule over you; the Lord will rule over you'” (Jud 8:23). And yet, according to the next few verses, where he resisted the temptation of fame/power, he was unable to resist the temptation of money/possessions.

The poetry of Psalm 85:10 is something that I’ve heard in worship songs and sermons in the past, but never realized was actually biblical. What a beautiful concept, and the more I dwell on it the more beautiful it becomes. “Steadfast love and faithfulness meet; righteousness and peace kiss each other.”

Mark 6, verse 20: “for Herod feared John, knowing that he was a righteous and holy man, and he kept him safe.” It’s interesting to me that John’s reputation as a “righteous and holy man” made king Herod fear and respect him. A life of Christ-likeness doesn’t always do that.

Paul’s ultimate response to the idol meat issue is found in verse 25-26 of 1 Corinthians 10. “Eat whatever is sold in the meat market without raising any question on the ground of conscience. For, ‘the earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof.'” His answer is surprising to me. Paul: “If the Lord made it, then it’s not a problem… and the Lord made everything.” BUT, the issue of conscience is held to the standard of the OTHER man, not you yourself. It is your brother’s conscience that this text is concerned with.

Daily Scripture readings for September, set # 16:

Judges 9
Psalm 86
Mark 6:30-44
1 Corinthians 11:1-16

Judges 9, verse 23… don’t read it too fast. “And God sent an evil spirit between Abimelech and the leaders of Shechem.” Evil spirit. God sent it. GOD did.

A clear statement about God and his characteristics/attributes: “For you, O Lord, are good and forgiving, abounding in steadfast love to all who call upon you” (Ps 86:5). Who is like the Lord?

A clear statement about Christ and his heart/emotion: “And he had compassion on them, for they were like sheep without a shepherd” (Mk 6:34).

1 Corinthians 11 is often referenced in discussions about male/female headship and submission. The wording is complicated, and I found The Message to be helpful in understanding the text’s intention.

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