Spiritual Rants: “Don’t Get ‘Gypt’d” September 19 Daily Bible Readings in a year: Isaiah 30:12-33:9 Galatians 5:1-12 Psalm 63:1-11 Proverbs 23:22

Old Testament:  Isaiah 30:12-33:19

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Isaiah 30:12-33:19   Don’t Get ‘Gypt’d

Chap. 30:12-33   More on the destruction of the Assyrian army and a description of the Millennium.

Chap. 31:  Another warning against allying with Egypt.

Chap. 32:  The King (v. 1) will reign in the Millennium.  Women are warned who are women “of ease” (vv. 9-14, cf. 3:16-26, Amos 4:1ff.)   Isaiah loves the Millennium: verses 15-20.

Chap. 33:1 -9  Another warning to Assyria to lay off Israel.

 

New Testament:  Galatians 5:1-12

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Galatians 5:1-12   I Can’t Believe He Said That

Salvation by grace is a major theme in Galatians.  It is not by law and it is not by works.  Paul is winding things up in chapter 5, saying Christ died to set us free.  Paul encourages the Galatians not to veer from the path of grace into a “yoke of slavery.”  Jesus tells us to be yoked to him (Matt. 11:28-30).

The problem in Galatia was that Judaizers had infiltrated the fellowship just as they had in Corinth.  They wanted Christians to follow the Jewish law.  They wanted Christians to be circumcised (v. 2).  Paul warns them against this practice.  He says that if they get circumcised, then they’d have to keep the entire law to be saved (cf. James 2: 10).

A controversial phrase is Gal. 2:4, “fallen from grace.”  Paul is not saying that someone can lose their salvation.  He is saying that anyone who tried to be righteous through the law has fallen from a life of grace.  He has already established that they are saved.  Remember in chapter 3:2-3 he said, “This is the only thing I want to find out from you: did you receive the Spirit by the works of the Law, or by hearing with faith? Are you so foolish? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh?”  In Romans Paul said that if someone did not have the Spirit, they did not belong to him implying that someone did have the Spirit, they did belong to him (Rom. 8:9).  So the Galatians were saved.

In my blog on 1 Cor. 2-3, I explained that Christians can be saved but act like non-Christians (Attacked!).  I hate to say but probably many Christians today are carnal.  I explain the difference amongst carnal, spiritual, and unsaved in my blog.

Paul is not saying here (v. 4) that the Galatians will lose their salvation, he is saying that they are going to lose the rewards of living in the Spirit, in grace.  He says much the same thing in the passages that warn about the bema judgment for Christians.   (Are you sick of hearing me talk about that?  Good.  cf. Rom. 14:10; 1 Cor. 3:10ff,. 2 Cor. 5:10).

To the Jews, circumcision was very important but to God in this era of the church, circumcision doesn’t mean anything (v. 5a).  Love, though, means a lot (v. 5b, 1 Cor. 13).

Paul is very concerned about the Galatians, just as you would expect a good pastor to be.  They were doing well but then had veered off-course (v. 7).  God didn’t do it (v. 8).

One bad apple spoils the whole barrel (v. 9, despite the Osmonds’ song).  Whoever is messing them up will be punished by God (v. 10).  Some might have accused Paul of continuing to preach circumcision but what was the logic in that?  Why was he being persecuted by Judaizers if he was still preaching circumcision? (v. 11).

Here’s one of those “I can’t believe he said that” things in Scripture.  Paul says he wishes that those causing all the trouble about circumcision would cut themselves!  Ouch!  And to think I get accused of saying things too strongly.  In my case, it’s always because I’m from New Jersey, they say.  I haven’t seen the Garden State in years!

Of course, good ministers probably would like to say that to a lot of people who are out there leading their flocks astray.  There are a smorgasbord of heresies floating around for Satan to choose as tools.  Legalism is one of his favorites.

 


Psalm 63:1-11   Better Than Life  A Song Of Thanksgiving or Trust or Lament by David


Proverbs 23:22  Don’t Walk In Traffic

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You might have had a great father.  You might have had a less than perfect father whom you didn’t like much.  Nevertheless, the worst of fathers have the best in his heart for you.  If he told you something, it was probably for your best.

That’s why the New Testament restates the fifth commandment to obey your parents (cf. Eph. 6:1-3).  If you do, you are promised a long life (cf. Eph. 6:3; Exod.20:12; Deut. 5:16).

Your father may have “exasperated” you (cf. Eph. 6:4).  In other words, he may have really ticked you off when you were growing up.  He wasn’t perfect (cf. Heb. 12:9).

But the fifth commandment was still a universal command, whether your father was a believer or not.  And though it was the fifth commandment, it was the first commandment that a child should learn (cf. “first with a promise,” Eph. 6:2).

If you follow the principles that the parents taught you, you can end up living longer in general.  Don’t forget that Proverbs is a book of wisdom.  Everything in it is generally true.  If you get sucked up by a tornado, you may die prematurely.  That doesn’t usually happen.

If you walk into traffic, you probably violated your parents’ advice, and your little life might be snuffed out ahead of its time.

 

Choose Life: Scripture:  Isaiah 30:15  NASB   “Do It For Your Own Self”

“For thus the Lord GOD, the Holy One of Israel, has said, ‘In repentance and rest you will be saved, In quietness and trust is your strength.’  But you were not willing,’”  Isaiah 30:15  NASB

I’ve been trying to get over some major surgery for the past ten years.  It’s been slow going but I’m winning the war.  I’m wondering if I violated God’s “Sabbaths” by not taking a day off every week.  When Israel violated their Sabbatical years, after about ten of them, God sent them into exile to rest the land for seventy years in Babylon (cf. Lev. 26:28-35, 43; 2 Chronicles 36:16-21; Jeremiah 25:8-12; you can find it all explained here: 70 Sabbaths without Rest).

I felt like God was calling my attention to this verse a few years ago.  So I started trying to be more conscious of how much rest I was getting.  I won’t write a blog on Sunday.  Somehow, I’ve been able to get double up at least one day a week so I can have Sundays off from writing.

Notice that Is. 30:15 says that there is a time that we should be quiet and from that we will gain strength.  As disciples it is important to eat right (lighten up on the caffeine, fat in meat, dairy products, sugar, sweeteners, no processed food).  It’s also important to exercise and get the right amount of sleep at night and rest during the week.  Make sure to try to take one day off a week and have some fun.  You will be more productive the rest of the week if you do.

Take some quiet time this week and every week.

In the words of a famous televangelist, “Do it for your own self.”

It’ll make God happy and it’ll be good for you, too.

 

If you do, you will find that you are choosing life (Deut. 30:19)!

 

Fun Application: 

Are you getting your proper rest?  Someone has said, “I’d rather burn out for the Lord than rust out.”  Are those our only two options?  Someone else has said, “Satan never rests.”  Howard Hendricks response to that was, “Since when is Satan our model?”  Our verse today indicates that we should rest.

Here are a couple more that indicate we should be getting rest:

Psalm 127:2    “It is vain for you to rise up early, To retire late, To eat the bread of painful labors; For He gives to His beloved even in his sleep.”

Matthew 11:29-30  “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and YOU WILL FIND REST FOR YOUR SOULS.”

Luke 10:40-41, “But Martha was distracted with all her preparations; and she came up to Him and said, ‘Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to do all the serving alone? Then tell her to help me.’  But the Lord answered and said to her, ‘Martha, Martha, you are worried and bothered about so many things’ . . . ”  (see blog Martha, Martha, Martha).

Before I left for seminary, a pastor at our church told me to be sure while going through my schooling  “to stop and smell the roses.”  I remembered that but hardly heeded the advice.  I was more like Martha.  Are you?  Do you need to stop and do something just for you today?  Do you need to stop and smell the roses?

The purpose of the Choose Life is to pick a positive help out of the One Year Bible (OYB) reading plan for the day.  There is always something positive in the Word of God to cheer us and give us strength. For more on today’s reading, check out my One Year Bible blog:  I Can’t Believe He Said That

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