Acts 23: 16: “But the son of Paul’s sister heard of their ambush, and he came and entered the barracks and told Paul.” This story is very similar to that of Esther, which we read last month. In both, various ‘chance’ incidents emerge to deliver God’s people from destruction. Here, St. Paul’s nephew just happens to overhear the plot to kill him, and a good and noble Roman commander, Claudius Lysias, just happens to be on duty that day, and goes to great lengths to ensure Paul’s safety. The Lord is great at working out the details no one else sees that are necessary for our deliverance!
Wednesday, October 7: “Claim This Promise!”
Micah 2: 12: “I will surely assemble all of you, Jacob, I will surely gather the remnant of Israel. I will put them together like sheep in the fold, like a flock in the midst of its pasture they will be noisy with men.” So, you think Social Distancing is forever? Not according to this prophecy! (Of course, women are included, not just men.) But know that when it comes to pass, it will be the Lord Who does the assembling, gathering, and putting together, not the stubbornness of man.
Thursday, October 8: “Like Idol, Like Worshipper”
Psalm 135: 15-18: “The idols of the nations are but silver and gold, the work of man’s hands. They have mouths, but they do not speak; they have eyes, but they do not see; they have ears, but they do not hear; nor is there any breath at all in their mouths. Those who make them will be like them, yes, everyone who trusts in them.” Do you ever wonder how some people can be so blind, deaf, and mute when it comes to the things of God? It’s because they are following idols rather than God; idols that have no life in themselves. Swag, style, and attitude may make you look fine, but they add nothing to your spiritual I.Q. Which is more valuable in the long run?
Friday, October 9: “Beloved Ruler”
Micah 5: 2: “But as for you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, too little to be among the clans of Judah, from you One will go forth from Me to be ruler in Israel. His goings forth are from long ago, from the days of eternity.” We’re going to hear this verse often starting in a couple of months, and it’s well that we should. But how often do we read the rest of the story, and learn what this forthcoming Ruler will do? As verses 10-13 declare, He will cut off our idols, sorceries, and other false sources of security in our midst. Isn’t it ironic that we use this season meant to celebrate this Ruler from Bethlehem to instead revel in the very things He came here to root out?
Saturday, October 10: “Truth Revealed”
Luke 8: 17: “For nothing is hidden that shall not become evident, nor anything secret that shall not become known and come to light.” It seems as if this verse justifies startling exposes and prying into other people’s secrets. But the context shows that it is the Good News, the Gospel, that is becoming evident, and God’s ways, not fully understood until the time of Christ, that came to light. This truth is what we should listen to, that it may shine forth from us and enlighten those around us.