2 Chronicles 35:1- 6
After the commitment had been made; a definite decision to be wholly God’s (see the end of chapter 34), it was time for celebration (1). But let it be noted that celebratory acts of worship that do not have such radical dedication behind them are mere froth on the surface of the church. At the core of the Passover festival lay the slaughter of the Passover lamb. The death of this animal foreshadowed the sacrifice made by Jesus on the cross (1 Cor. 5:7). It is a paradox that the suffering of Jesus for mankind has given us the greatest ever reason to celebrate. (We need to ensure, by the way, that our celebratory type meetings are to the LORD and not just a chandelier swinging knees up for our own personal enjoyment! Let’s keep the God focus sharp.)
(2)We believe in the ‘priesthood of all believers’: i.e. that every Christian is a ‘priest'(1 Pet. 2:9; Revelation 1:6), having a.) the right and enormous privilege of access to God’s presence through the sacrifice of Jesus (Hebs. 10:19ff.), and b.) a unique ministry with which to serve the Lord. But I don’t know a single ‘priest’ who couldn’t use some encouragement in their life of service. So let’s be proactive in seeking to lift people up. Who can I encourage today? It’s a terrible thing to ask someone to do a job in church life, but then show no interest in them and what they are doing.(Gordon Macdonald writes beautifully about his wife, Gail: Having learned the discipline of aggressive thanksgiving from her mother, there was rarely a week in my young wife’s life when she did not write or connect with at least 20 people to express her gratitude about something. I came to see this exercise was part of her spiritual disciplines. It was as if she awakened each morning and asked, ”Who can I elevate today by spotlighting something generous they’ve done?” From her I learned the significance of written thank you notes. I do not exaggerate when I tell you that, more than once, I have seen people approach Gail and pull out from their wallet a thank you note she wrote them ten years ago. The Thankful Exchange: Leadership Journal, pp. 75, 76: Fall 2013 )
(3) Josiah exhorted the spiritual leaders to fulfill their calling with servant-hearted devotion to God and His people. He saw that it was essential to their ministry that they, and all the people, should know the presence of God: Put the sacred ark in the temple that Solomon son of David king of Israel built (3). It was also vital that all that they did should be governed by the Word of God: …according to the directions written by David king of Israel and by his son Solomon (4)…doing what the LORD commanded through Moses (6). In addition, they must never forget that they needed the Passover lambs as much as anyone else, for they too were sinners. They had a special work to do, but they were not superior to others.
These must remain as great priorities for those of us in the contemporary church, i.e. that we are firmly founded on the Holy Scriptures, centred in the cross, and continually seek the manifestation of God’s presence by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Prayer: ‘Come Lord Jesus, pour out your Spirit we pray…pour out your Spirit on us today.’