Friday, August 31, 2012

August 31, 2012 … Repent And Live!

Chronological Bible Reading Plan - Day 244

Passage of the Day: Reference of Today’s Chronological Bible Study: Ezekiel 18-20 To study these chapters, go to this link

Highlight Passage: Ezekiel 18: 1-3; 10-13; 19-21; 30-32 : [NLT] … 1 Then another message came to me from the LORD: 2 “Why do you quote this proverb in the land of Israel: ‘the parents have eaten sour grapes, but their children’s mouths pucker at the taste’? 3 As surely as I live, says the Sovereign LORD, you will not say this proverb anymore in Israel. 4 For all people are mine to judge—both parents and children alike. And this is my rule: The person who sins will be the one who dies. … 
10 “But suppose that man has a son who grows up to be a robber or murderer and refuses to do what is right. 11 And suppose that son does all the evil things his father would never do—worships idols on the mountains, commits adultery, 12 oppresses the poor and helpless, steals from debtors by refusing to let them redeem what they have given in pledge, worships idols and takes part in loathsome practices, 13 and lends money at interest. Should such a sinful person live? No! He must die and must take full blame. … 
19“ ‘What?’ you ask. ‘Doesn’t the child pay for the parent’s sins?’ No! For if the child does what is right and keeps my laws, that child will surely live. 20 The one who sins is the one who dies. The child will not be punished for the parent’s sins, and the parent will not be punished for the child’s sins. Righteous people will be rewarded for their own goodness, and wicked people will be punished for their own wickedness. 21 But if wicked people turn away from all their sins and begin to obey my laws and do what is just and right, they will surely live and not die. 22 All their past sins will be forgotten, and they will live because of the righteous things they have done. … 
30 “Therefore, I will judge each of you, O people of Israel, according to your actions, says the Sovereign LORD. Turn from your sins! Don’t let them destroy you! 31 Put all your rebellion behind you, and get for yourselves a new heart and a new spirit. For why should you die, O people of Israel? 32 I don’t want you to die, says the Sovereign LORD. Turn back and live! 
Highlight Passage: Ezekiel 19: 1-2; 14 : [NLT] … 1 “Sing this funeral song for the princes of Israel: 2 ‘What is your mother? A lioness among lions! She lay down among the young lions and reared her cubs. … 
14 A fire has come from its branches and devoured its fruit. None of the remaining limbs is strong enough to be a ruler’s scepter.’ This is a funeral song, and it is now time for the funeral.”  
Highlight Passage: Ezekiel 20: 1-4; 23-26; 39-40 : [NLT] … 1 On August 14,£ during the seventh year of King Jehoiachin’s captivity, some of the leaders of Israel came to request a message from the LORD. They sat down in front of me to wait for his reply. 2 Then this message came to me from the LORD: 3 “Son of man, give the leaders of Israel this message from the Sovereign LORD: How dare you come to ask for my help? As surely as I live, I will tell you nothing. This is the word of the Sovereign LORD! 4 “Son of man, bring judgment against them and condemn them. Make them realize how loathsome the actions of their ancestors really were. … 
23 But I took a solemn oath against them [i.e., the ancestors of the Jews in Ezekiel’s times] while they were in the wilderness. I vowed I would scatter them among all the nations 24 because they did not obey my laws. They scorned my instructions by violating my Sabbath days and longing for the idols of their ancestors. 25 I gave them over to worthless customs and laws that would not lead to life. 26 I let them pollute themselves with the very gifts I had given them, and I allowed them to give their firstborn children as offerings to their gods—so I might devastate them and show them that I alone am the LORD. … 
39 [From God, Ezekiel’s message to the people of Judah in captivity] … “As for you, O people of Israel, this is what the Sovereign LORD says: If you insist, go right ahead and worship your idols, but then don’t turn around and bring gifts to me. Such desecration of my holy name must stop! 40 For on my holy mountain, says the Sovereign LORD, the people of Israel will someday worship me, and I will accept them. There I will require that you bring me all your offerings and choice gifts and sacrifices. ============ 
Cross Reference Passage: Romans 1: 18-32 : [NLT] … To study this passage, go to this link
Cross Reference Passage: Romans 12: 1-2 : [NLT] … To study this passage, go to this link

My Journal for Today: Oh how God, in and through Ezekiel as His Prophet (captured in Chapters 18-20 of Ezekiel’s book), wanted His recalcitrant children captured in Babylon to get His word to repent in faith and be saved. And how Ezekiel, desperately pleading to these Jews with God’s message, wanted them to hear the truth. However, as I read today’s chronological reading passages in Ezekiel, it again reminded me of the pleas of the Apostle Paul to the mostly Jewish Christians in Rome of his day [see the cross reference passages to which I’ve linked readers here in my journaling today].

 But Paul had a definite one-up on Ezekiel; and that was the reality of the life, death, and resurrection of the One Who had come, The Messiah, to fulfill all the prophesies and promises of the Old Covenant. Yet, even in Paul’s day, as is true today, there are those who just didn’t get it; and they reverted, as do so many today, to the ways of self and the flesh, just as the wayward Jews had done in all ages of history.

And even today, all around us, we see people who’ve heard the Gospel message and they hear watchmen on the wall, trumpeting the truth of God; and yet, some, who even call themselves “christian,” yet live lives of idolatry and default to hearts of sinfulness. And it is so sad, but true, that these unrepentant, small “c,” christians, like the unrepentant Jews of Ezekiel’s day, will march into hell because they were unable to believe and declare the Lordship of Christ in their lives (as Paul also preached in Romans 10: 9-13).

My friend, I stop here today; and give Paul’s warning from God in Romans 1: 18-32 [linked above]; and I exhort any who read here to Paul’s exhortation in Romans 12: 1-2 [also linked above]. And then I plead with you to believe and declare the truth in Romans 10: 9-13 (which you’ll have to find on your own). Because if you believe those truths and stand with me, having believed in faith in the saving grace given through Christ on the cross, you will join me and we will spend eternity with Christ TOGETHER in glory.

And if you believe and declare this; and are living the life of repentance and faith … I think I sense a very loud, ”HALLELUJAH!!!”

My Prayer Today: … Oh, Lord, those are my feelings this day … HALLELJUAH!!!! Amen

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