Archive for December 30th, 2007

The Last Lord’s Day of 2007

Sunday, December 30th, 2007

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(Image from Snapshots of Joy)

Tonight, our pastor took time to reflect on the past year, and reminded us that the seasons of life go by so quickly. His sermon was based on those well-known verses from Ecclesiastes 3:1-15, but particularly on verse 12:

1 To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:

2 A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;

3 A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;

4 A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;

5 A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;

6 A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;

7 A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;

8 A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.

9 What profit hath he that worketh in that wherein he laboureth?

10 I have seen the travail, which God hath given to the sons of men to be exercised in it.

11 He hath made every thing beautiful in his time; also he hath set the world in their heart, so that no man can find out the work that God maketh from the beginning to the end.

12 I know that there is no good in them, but for a man to rejoice, and to do good in his life.

13 And also that every man should eat and drink, and enjoy the good of all his labour, it is the gift of God.

14 I know that, whatsoever God doeth, it shall be for ever; nothing can be put to it, nor any thing taken from it: and God doeth it, that men should fear before him.

15 That which hath been is now; and that which is to be hath already been; and God requireth that which is past.

He pointed out that these verses are NOT telling us what to do, but are telling us what actually happens in the course of a life time. There will be good times AND bad times. These things happen not because of fate or chance, but come to us from the purposeful, personal direction of the holy God.

EVERYTHING is meant to draw us closer to God. When things go well, we are to be thankful, acknowledging that all good gifts are from Him. When things don’t go well, we are to be patient and wait on the Lord.

I love the duty which God sets before us in verse 12. Even though there is so much darkness, wickedness, and selfishness in this world, it is the Lord’s will for us to REJOICE in Him, trusting Him, and DOING GOOD. That is my primary goal for the New Year, 2008:

As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith. – Galatians 6:10

Sunday Devotional

Sunday, December 30th, 2007

I have often mentioned how much I enjoy Bob Hoekstra’s Daily Devotionals, which are available at Blue Letter Bible. The selection today is entitled, More on Walking with Jesus the Way We Received Him. Here are a few excerpts from his helpful writing:

As you have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding in it with thanksgiving. (Colossians 2:6-7)

The manner in which we received the Lord is the very same manner in which we are to walk in Him. “As you have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him.”

We received Him by grace, we must walk by grace.

We were born again by the Spirit, we must walk by the Spirit.

Furthermore, when we first received Christ, He was our only hope. Now, we are to walk with Him the same way.

Truly, we need the Lord Jesus as much now for living the Christian life, as we needed Him at the beginning to be born again into it.