Bible Pathways - May 12, 2008
Highlights In Today's Reading:
The kings we just read about a few days ago in II Kings are listed again. Note who led the 1st expedition of Jews back to Jerusalem (3:19)!
The tribe of Reuben preferred to live in the rich, fertile lands just outside the promised land (Numbers 32). They chose what seemingly would bring them success. However, with the river separating them from their kindred, the Reubenites were among the first tribes to be conquered and taken as slaves to Assyria. The God of Israel stirred up the spirit of . . . Tilgath-pilneser king of Assyria, and he carried them away, even the Reubenites (I Chronicles 5:26). Jacob's prophecy, thou shalt not excel (49:4), truly came to pass; no one from the tribe of Reuben ever became a judge or a prophet.
How satisfying it is to yield oneself to God to be led onward in the path He has chosen. He uses the men and women who have prepared themselves to serve the Lord. He appoints one person to be king — another, to be a servant. Whatever God has chosen for us, in faith we should rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice (Philippians 4:4).
In the calling of God there is nothing about which we should murmur and nothing of which we should be proud, but there is much to praise the Lord for. Furthermore, there is also no one of whom to be jealous, for other people's "advantages" have nothing to do with us. God always chooses what is His best for those who leave the choice with Him. So there is no need to think we have been cheated or have missed something. We will be able to in every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you (I Thessalonians 5:18). There could be nothing more tragic than to come to life's end knowing the course we chose had been a self-serving detour from God's chosen path. We only have one life to live, it will soon be past, and only what's done for Christ will last.
We are always in danger of setting a limit to what we will do for Christ and His Church. Today God wants to use you as His vessel through which He works in the ministry of the Gospel. Directly ahead lies a work that is immensely greater than that which lies behind. God is always ready to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think (Ephesians 3:20).
All who seek . . . first the Kingdom of God, and His righteousness (Matthew 6:33) can with the Apostle Paul say: I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love His appearing (II Timothy 4:7-8).
Thought for Today:
Have you ever asked God to make the latter years of your life more fruitful than the earlier years? Start now a life of Divine purpose instead of selfish ambition.
Through the genealogy of David (I Chronicles 3:1-24). Christ the Son of God was also called the Son of David. The Book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the Son of David (Matthew 1:1; Luke 3:23-38; Romans 1:3).
3:9 concubines =b> slave women that legally became secondary wives; 4:10 coast =b> border ; 4:40 fat =b> rich, good; 5:11 over against =b> across from.
Pray for International Shortwave Broadcasts sponsored by Kelly Owen and Edgar W. Donnon; English International Shortwave Broadcasts sponsored by Mt. Olivet Christian Church, Smithful MD and in memory of Jeffrey Wolfal • Executive Director of the IBRA in our Washington DC Branch: Reverend Michael Hall • Government Officials: Gov. Dave Heineman (NE) and Rep. Frank LoBiondo (NJ) • Country: Niger (10 million) in west-central Africa • Major languages: French and Hausa • Christian evangelism is limited • 89% Muslim; 10% animist; .4% Christian • Prayer Suggestion: Ask the Lord to give you strength for today's need (Ephesians 3:14-16).
Optional Reading: Romans 15
Memory Verse for the Week: I Peter 1:18