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Wednesday, August 24, 2016

As for Me and My Family, We Will Serve the Lord

Today's Reading:
  • Joshua 24:1 - 33
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Joshua 24:1 - 24:33
The book of Joshua ends with Joshua's death at the ago of 110 (24:29). Before he died, Joshua summoned the people one last time. Joshua gave them a message from the Lord, in which the Lord reiterated all the mighty deeds he had done for His people. He talked about the lines of Isaac and Jacob (24:4), He talked about the plagues sent down on Egypt (24:5). He talked about the parting of the Red Sea for escape (24:7). He talked about the victory over the Amorites (24:8), Balak (24:10), and Jericho (24:11).

Joshua then warns the people that may must choose which god to worship. The decision to worship the Lord should be made wholeheartedly (24:14). Should the people turn away and worship other Gods, they would be abandoned by the Lord (24:20). Joshua also gave this famous verse:
But as for me and my family, we will serve the Lord. (24:15).
The people of Israel agreed to worship the Lord, and were faithful throughout the rest of Joshua's life, and the life of the elders who outlived him. Joshua died peacefully and was buried in his allocated land.

Verse 24:15 speaks dearly to me. It does not matter what the world says. It does not matter what the nation says. It does not matter what my neighbor says. It does not matter what my friend says. It does not matter what my brother says. But as for me and my family, we will serve the Lord.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Let God Not Forsake Us

Today's Reading:
  • Psalm 89
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Psalm 89
This psalm starts with great praise to the Lord. We are reminded that the Lord's unfailing love endures forever (89:2), and that He will sit on his throne from now and throughout eternity (89:4). We are then reminded of the Lord's covenant with David. Although the Lord made a covenant with David, He also warned the people that disobedience would result in punishment (89:32). The psalm then moves into a story of despair - a denounced king (89:39), and a people who are wholly vulnerable and defeated. The psalm ends with a plea that the Lord would swoop in and rescue his people. The psalmist reminds God that his life is very short (89:47) and not to forsaken him.

I don't ever want to feel the Lord's wrath like this. I can't imagine what it would be like to live every day, knowing that you were living out the Lord's punishment against you. All throughout the old testament I've seen God dealing punishment in terms of entire nations. It makes me worry for my nation, as we fall further and further from the Lord. As our government dictates that every religion but Christianity should be celebrated and protected. As the White House lights up in rainbow colors - God's promise - in celebration of marriage covenants that the Lord would not sanction. As ten commandment markers are removed from courthouse lawns. As local businesses are ruined because they don't want to do something against their beliefs; yet businesses that stand on other religions are not touched. As marines are brought up on charges for leaving an open bible on their desks.

I feel our freedom slipping away, large chunks at a time. Little by little Satan infiltrates the Christian mind. We are conditioned to think that sin is normal and should be embraced. After all, it's all about "love". We are being desensitized and pulled away from the holy life God has called us to live.  Please pray for our country, and vote for our leadership. Those are the two things that we as Christians can do. We are NOT a minority in the US, yet we are letting these things be taken away from us. If we stood together, and with the help of the Lord, we could take back our nation. Our Lord is far mightier than Satan and the work being done against our nation. Please pray for your nation, pray for its leaders, and vote.