The Joy of Glory

Discovering endless joy in the boundless glory of God…

Tag: promises

Lent Devotional: Psalm 12

Psalm 12 (click here)
The words of the LORD are pure words, like silver refined in a furnace on the ground, purified seven times. You, O LORD, will keep them; you will guard us from this generation forever. On every side the wicked prowl, as vileness is exalted among the children of man. (Psalm 12:6-8)

Do we believe the promises of God? Do we really?

I find myself questioning all the time… wrestling with… fighting the fight of faith… fighting to believe! This has been a fight since the garden. Our first parents were deceived when Satan was able to get them to doubt the Word of God… the enemies tactics have not changed.

He chips away at our confidence in God’s Word by making all our surrounding circumstances appear to contradict what God has said. This leads to our questioning… and questioning is not a bad thing in and of itself. Fighting to believe is a good thing and is encouraged all over the Bible.

“Fight the good fight of the faith.” 1 Timothy 6:12

Our questioning and wrestling is not a bad thing when we are asking the Lord to fight with us for faith. Our questioning and wrestling become problematic when we join hands with the enemy to fight against the Lord and against faith.

In Psalm 12, the psalmist fights by reminding himself of the nature of the Lord’s Word… the purity of his promises. It is only in knowing that this God and his promises are fighting for him that he can face the wicked prowling on every side.

Fight the fight of faith, but not against the Lord…not against the only one who can sustain your faith. No. Fight, empowered by the Lord, fight to trust in his Word so that we may defeat unbelief by the power he provides!

“Now to HIM who is able TO KEEP YOU from stumbling and TO PRESENT YOU blameless before the presence of his glory with great joy, to the only God, our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen.” Jude 24-25

*The complete SVCC Lenten reading guide is available here.


Lent Devotional: Job 29-30

Job 29-30 (click here)
Then I thought, “I shall die in my nest, and I shall multiply my days as the sand, 19 my roots spread out to the waters, with the dew all night on my branches, 20 my glory fresh with me, and my bow ever new in my hand.” (Job 29:18-20)

Job reflects on his life as it was in all his prosperity. He reveals to us why he was known as a man who was blameless and upright, fearing the Lord and turning away from evil. Job was not just a wealthy man who offered sacrifices, but he offered his very self to all.

Job helped the poor and the powerless, the blind, the needy, the lame, the widowed, the orphaned, etc. He used his blessing to bless others. Job was not self-centered, but God-centered. Yet…in all his material wealth, certain unhealthy thoughts crept into Job’s mind as expectations of how God would/should act towards him.

Job thought that life would continue on as always until the day he died peacefully in his sleep. Trouble, bankruptcy, sickness, were not a part of Job’s future calculations. He may have known they were possibilities, but they were not his expectation.

For how many of us is this the dream ending to our lives? To die “in our nest,” peacefully, in our sleep after a long life that has had days/years like the sands. This is our expectation, but it is not what we are promised. Most of our disappointments with God are due to unmet expectations which we un-rightly place on God, not unmet promises which he has graciously held out to us.

God has promised us that we will experience suffering and trouble and hardship. The odds of dying peacefully in our sleep are not very high for the Christian. Yet, he has promised to be with us amidst our suffering…all the way up to death’s door and even on the other side of it! That is the kind of promise which brings true peace. Job will soon learn much about the peace brought about by the presence of the Lord.

*The complete SVCC Lenten reading guide is available here.

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