Daily Scripture readings for January, set #17:
Nehemiah chapter 11 is… kinda boring. I don’t have any notes written down and I can’t come up with anything to comment on. Buuuuut, Proverbs 13 totally makes up for it. Holy cow. SO MUCH WISDOM in these verses. A few of my favs: “In everything the prudent acts with knowledge, but a fool flaunts his folly”(vs 16 – note the word “everything”), “Whoever walks with the wise becomes wise, but the companion of fools will suffer harm”(vs 20 – the Proverbs version of “bad company corrupts good morals”), “Whoever spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is diligent to discipline him” (vs 24 – the Proverbs version of Hebrews 12).
“Truly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or wife or brothers or parents or children, for the sake of the kingdom of God, who will not receive many times more in this time, and in the age to come eternal life” (Luke 18:29-30). Jesus’ point: Following Christ is not a sacrifice. It isn’t an obligation that one begrudgingly submits to. It is rather the most joy-filled and blessing-soaked endeavor one can possibly pursue, worth far more than anything one might be giving up in its place.
At the close of 2 Timothy 4, Paul lists “Alexander the coppersmith” alongside some others who “deserted” him (vs 14-16). What’s interesting about this is his VERY different responses – verse 14 contrasted with verse 16. Why does Paul expect one to receive God’s judgement while the other God’s mercy?
Daily Scripture readings for January, set #18:
It simply cannot be ignored that music has a special role in the act and service of worshiping God. “For long ago in the days of David and Asaph there were directors of the singers, and there were songs of praise and thanksgiving to God “ (Neh 12:46).
“There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death” (Prov 14:12). How can this be? How can something SEEM right but actually lead to death? The logic behind this Proverb hinges on the inherent sinfulness and brokenness of mankind, which theologians call “depravity.” Our depravity is so significant that we are unable to accurately determine what is “right.” I try to remember this whenever the circumstances of my life leave me wanting to accuse God of being in the wrong.
Luke 18:34 is an interesting follow-up to my comment just now on today’s Proverbs reading. “But they understood none of these things. This saying was hidden from them, and they did not grasp what was said.” Not all truth is readily apparent to us.
“He must hold firm to the trustworthy word as taught, so that he may be able to give instruction in sound doctrine and also to rebuke those who contradict it” (Titus 1:9). Accomplishing the things listed in the second half of this verse hinges on taking the action in the first half.