Daily Berry Patch Devotions in 2015 - Day 336
Devotional Song: … GO TO THIS LINK … Please take the time to take in a video of Sara Groves singing her song … You Cannot Lose My Lose, declaring the reality of God’s love … which cannot be mocked or lost in Christ
Highlight Passage: Ezekiel 25:6-7 [NKJV] …
6 ‘For thus says the Lord God: “Because you clapped your hands, stamped your feet, and rejoiced in heart with all your disdain for the land of Israel, 7 indeed, therefore, I will stretch out My hand against you, and give you as plunder to the nations; …
… God’s declaration to a nation who mocked Him.
Highlight Context – Ezekiel 25:1-7 [NKJV] … USE THIS LINK …
… God will not be mocked! … Ammon tried it; and paid the price dearly.
Reference Passage #1 - Proverbs 24: 17 [NKJV] …
17 Do not rejoice when your enemy falls, and do not let your heart be glad when he stumbles; …
… God speaks to all of us in this proverb to avoid hoping for and celebrating the downfall of our enemies.
Reference Passage #2 - Matthew 5: 43-48 [NKJV] … USE THIS LINK …
… Jesus, … on true Kingdom living, which even includes loving one’s enemy.
Reference Passage #3 - Galatians 6:7 [NKJV] …
7 Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man reaps, that will he also reap.
… Sow hatred … reap hatred; … sow love … you guessed it … reap LOVE!
My Journal for Today: Today’s Our Daily Bread author, Lawrence Darmani, used an OT story involving one of the enemies of the Israelites, the Ammonites, [see Ezekiel 5 passage], who were mocking God, which illustrates a universal truth … that God’s wrath, … nor His love, should EVER be, mocked.
The Ammonites in the days of Ezekiel boastfully profaned God and His temple; and Ezekiel proclaimed God’s eternal law of reciprocity against them … that one reaps what he sows (see Gal. 6:7. That’s why Solomon warned us (in Prov. 24:7 not to sow prideful arrogance when an enemy stumbles; and Jesus taught us (in Matthew 5) to sow love ALWAYS.
I’m a sports fan; and I watch a lot of American professional football on TV. And in the football league, there is a rule, called “Excessive Celebration,” whereby a team is penalized if the referees perceive a player mocking the other team, or any opposing player, openly and excessively (as depicted in the attached photo). And it’s one thing to mock an opposing team in a football game and being penalized; but imagine mocking God with our pride in the game of life. Do we expect an all-knowing, all loving God, will ignore us sowing such arrogance in His presence. … NOT!!!
Hence, He has warned us in His word over and over again, as with the passages copied/linked above, against sowing such arrogance. But all too often, I’ve found myself feeling pridefully glad and wanting to celebrate when someone who has wronged me or a perpetrator of evil is brought down. I find myself wanting to celebrate that “fools” downfall with arrogant mockery.
Do I sense some empathy here?
God’s love is for all; and He wants to dispense it liberally to all; but He cannot pour out His love and grace any time we blunt His love with our arrogance and pride. So, how about today we do all we can to sow love by praying for our enemies and avoiding any arrogance which would celebrate the downfall of those who actually hate us. … Tough, yes; … but absolutely essential if we are to be Christ to others in our life.
My Prayer Today: Oh, dear Lord, … as Sara Groves sings in her song linked above, I know Your love is mine and it will always be mine; but help me be in a state of mind to receive Your love by sharing it with others. … Amen
Blogger Note: Everyday during this year, my daily devotional blogs are influenced by the reading and study of the online devotional blog entitled Our Daily Bread, distributed online via email by RBC Ministries. If you GO TO THIS LINK on the date of my blog, you can read/study the ODB blogs; or you can subscribe to the blog via email at that site.