Old Testament: Isaiah 33:10-36:22
Isaiah 33:10-36:22 Heaven On Earth
Chap. 33:10-24 Even more on the destruction of the Assyrian army.
Chap. 34: The judgment on Edom, symbolic of God’s defeat of all His enemies and Christ’s rule. In fact, this chapter looks like a description of the last battle, the battle of Armageddon.
Chap. 35: This chapter is another description of the Millennium. Earth will be renewed (v. 1). Mankind will be healed (v. 3). Jews will return to Jerusalem (v. 10). In short: Heaven on Earth.
Chap. 36: Chapters 36-39 form an historical interlude between the judgment chapters of Isaiah and the comfort of the coming Savior. This chapter tells of the defeat of Assyria. It’s the same story we saw in
2 Kings 18-20 and 2 Chronicles 29-32. The type of writing changes from poetry to prose. It’s the account of Judah’s King Hezekiah and his conflict with Snatch-a-rib, I mean Sennacherib, the king of Assyria.
There are three miracles in this section. The angel of the Lord, perhaps the pre-incarnate Jesus, dispatched 185,000 Assyrians in one night (37:36-38). The second miracle was that Yahweh made the sun go back 10 degrees on the sundial of Ahaz (38: 7-8). Finally, God grants Hezekiah’s wish and extends his life fifteen years (38:1-5).
I have written on this before here: Phoebe And Other Friends
New Testament: Galatians 5:13-26
Galatians 5:13-26 Walking The Walk
This is an extremely portion of Scripture on living the Christian life aka “spirituality.”
Paul has covered a lot of this in Romans 6-8. The flesh can only be conquered by the Spirit. The fellowship should be a place of serving one another (v. 13, there are about 60 “one another” passages in the New Testament).
Paul says the law can be summed up as “love your neighbor as your self” (v. 14.) If you think about the ten commandments, the first four are about God and the last six about how to treat others. But the second half can be summed up as “love your neighbor as yourself” and the first part as “love God with all your heart, mind, and soul” (v. 14, cf. Matt. 22:37). The opposite was to eat each other up which meant they all could be eaten up (v. 15). That’s an interesting picture of the love feasts they were having!
Romans 8 was all about the Spirit and how He resolves the new nature-old nature conflict. That is summed up by Paul in verse 16, “But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh.” How do we learn to “walk” in the Spirit? The same way that we walk in the flesh as a baby. We get up and fall, then walk a bit, then walk, then walk a bit. It’s by trial and error. We must learn to discern what is from God and what is from the world or the devil. We may never perfect this while we are alive. We must know Scripture to be successful. It is not possible to progress in our walk with the Lord by only “sensing” God. We must also know the Word. Our minds are ultimately the key to being spiritual (cf. Rom. 12:2, “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect”).
Our natural inclination is to take care of our bodies and the “flesh” (v. 16). This is opposed to what the Holy Spirit wants for us (v. 17). The Spirit keeps us from just doing whatever we want (v. 17). The law used to serve that kind of function but to live in the Spirit is much greater than trying to adhere to the law (v. 18). Our motivation now comes from our relationship with Jesus in the Spirit. Our motivation is not to keep our flesh in check by keeping the law.
Here’s how we know we are straying from the path of the Spirit, we will engage in immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, envying, drunkenness, carousing and other things like that (vv. 19-20). That kind of thing won’t be going on in Heaven so we shouldn’t be doing those things on earth (v. 21).
As Christians we should be loving, joyful, peaceful, patient, kind, good, faithful, gentle and self-controlled (v. 22-23). The law won’t help us grow in these things (v. 23b). When we died with Christ, spiritually, on the cross, our evil old emotions and desires died with him, spiritually speaking (v. 24, cf. Rom. 6:6-8).
Since we were made alive with Christ and given the Holy Spirit (cf. Rom. 6:8; 8:9), we should be sensitive to the Spirit every moment (v. 25). This is how we have a relationship with God.
Provoking one another and boasting, envying and “tweaking” one another is not of the Holy Spirit (v. 26).
Psalm 64:1-10 Boomerang Slang A Lament by David
Proverbs 23:23 Get Set Free!
This year at the trading deadline, the Yankees sold off some of their best players for one of the few times in history. They are usually buyers, not sellers. It worked out for them this year. Their young new guys from the minors have carried them and made it an exciting season.
Don’t do that with the truth you know. Don’t sell it. It is always wise to buy truth, not sell it (v. 23). Every chance you get, learn and then learn some more.
The father of the righteous will greatly rejoice,
And he who sires a wise son will be glad in him.
Be a truth-er, not a dummy.
It will set you free (cf. John 8:31-32)!
Choose Life: Scripture: Galatians 5:16 NASB “Sensitive To The Spirit”
“But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh. ‘” Galatians 5:16 NASB
I’m a big proponent of being “sensitive to the Holy Spirit.” Being sensitive to the Spirit entails what some people call “prompts,” “a check in the spirit,” or we could say words or thoughts that come into our head that are consistent with Scripture . . . you get the idea. It is important to know Scripture. Otherwise, how would you know what comes from the Lord or what comes from the devil? The New Testament says that Jesus’ sheep will know His voice (cf. John 10:27).
I believe this is what Paul meant my “walking in the Spirit.” We learn to walk physically by trial and error, falling down and getting up again. I believe we learn to walk in the Spirit in the same way. The more Scripture we know, the less trouble we will have. The Holy Spirit would never lead us contrary to Scripture.
Unfortunately, a lot of Christians miss out on this aspect of the Christian life. A.W. Tozer knew about it. He said the Christian life was like an airplane with two wings. It needed both to fly. So the Christian needs both the subjective element of the Christian life and the objective Word of God to take off and fly.
Start “listening” the Holy Spirit today and walk in the Spirit.
It will transform your Christian life.
If you do, you will find that you are choosing life (Deut. 30:19)!
When I was in college it was popular for people to think God to telling them who they were going to marry. Unfortunately, God would not always tell both people! Obviously, someone had gotten their “leadings” wrong. God hadn’t really “led” anyone in those situations!
I think it is good to “listen” to the Lord. But here’s my rule, don’t tell anyone what you think God is leading you to do or at least don’t say, “God is telling me . . . .” Because if you are wrong, it wasn’t God! If you are wrong then YOU are wrong. If you think God is leading you and whatever it is happens, then you can give Him the glory.
The rule is keep an ear open to God all the time but put your knowledge of Scripture before any “leadings.” It is better not to be overly spiritual. As Ecclesiastes says, “Do not be excessively righteous and do not be overly wise. Why should you ruin yourself? ” (Eccles. 7:16).
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: Walking The Walk