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Free Daily Bible notes by Rev Stephen Thompson


April 2014

Daily Bible thoughts 606: Wednesday 30th April 2014:

 Isaiah 3: 1 – 11

In this chapter Isaiah turns his thoughts from a distant ‘day of the Lord’ to a judgment that would be much more imminent for Judah and Jerusalem. In fact it fell more than a hundred years after Isaiah wrote these words, but the prophet’s description was spot on. The calamitous punishment came at the hands of the Babylonians. Though all the people would suffer, the leaders would face the worst. Leaders bear the greater responsibility, both for what goes right and what goes wrong (James 3:1). In these verses Isaiah lists the key leaders who would be removed from Jerusalem, leaving only the poor behind (2 Kings 24:14; 25:18-21). I take (1b) to refer to the ”supply” that would be removed, and (2, 3) to the ”support”. The Message has it that God ”…is emptying Jerusalem and Judah Of all the basic necessities, plain bread and water to begin with. He’s withdrawing police and protection, judges and courts, pastors and teachers, captains and generals, doctors and nurses, and, yes, even the repairmen and jacks-of-all-trades.” Our trust must not be in any man or woman but in the Lord Himself. ”God would take away in His wrath everything that dethroned Him in the hearts of the people…Beware living on substitutes!” Warren W. Wiersbe: With the Word,p.454.

A football supporter was telling me recently about his team. They are not doing well in their league and the potential of relegation looms large. It would appear their confidence is shot to pieces. ‘No-one seems to want the ball,’ he said. Verses 4 – 7 describe such a situation politically, where no-one wants ‘the ball’. Usually it doesn’t take much encouragement to get people to become leaders! But here people will recognise that the situation is hopeless and not want office. In the vacuum created by (1-3) there will be poor and immature leadership (see also 12) and social anarchy will reign: ”I’ll put little kids in charge of the city. Schoolboys and schoolgirls will order everyone around…One brother will grab another and say, ‘You look like you’ve got a head on your shoulders. Do something! Get us out of this mess.’ And he’ll say, ‘Me? Not me! I don’t have a clue. Don’t put me in charge of anything.’ ” The Message. ”Generally men aspire to be rulers; the emolument and honour of the position are infinitely attractive… What a striking contrast is suggested to the love of Jesus Christ! ‘He saw that there was no man…therefore his own arm brought salvation.” He knew that if he espoused the cause of our lost race, it would involve Him in the bitterest agony and woe. But He steadfastly set his face to the accomplishment of our redemption.” F.B.Meyer: Great verses through the Bible,p.270.

There is no escaping the Biblical principle that we will reap what we sow (8-11). You cannot sow dahlias in your allotment and expect onions to come up! Here are key lines in this passage: ”They have brought disaster upon themselves…they will enjoy the fruit of their deeds…They will be paid back…” (9b, 10, 11: You will notice that this works both ways: sow goodness and that’s what will grow; sow wickednessand… you know the rest!!) What is fascinating here is that even as the ship is going down, and they are responsible for it, the people remain on deck shaking their fists at God. ”Jerusalem’s on its last legs. Judah is soon down for the count. Everything people say and do is at cross – purposes with GOD, a slap in my face. Brazen in their depravity, they flout their sins like degenerate Sodom. Doom to their eternal souls! They’ve made their bed; now they’ll sleep in it.” The Message. On Good Friday I took part in a small march of witness in our village, as we carried the cross up the High Street. Someone said to me afterwards that they could see the derision and even anger in some facial expressions. Whilst we are not the judges of what is happening in anyone’s hearts, it is certainly true that scorn and hatred can be writ large on people’s faces (9).

Note the promise to ”the righteous” (10). Even when everything is crumbling around us, let us not lose heart and just blend in with the crowd because it’s easier. We should continue to walk in God’s ways. We will not regret it if we do.

Prayer: I acknowledge, Lord, the feebleness of anything I try to rely on apart from you. It will not hold me. Forgive me if I ever, even for a moment, try to live on substitutes.


Daily Bible thoughts 605: Tuesday 29th April 2014:

 Psalm 105:1-11

This psalm starts with a call to give thanks to the Lord, sing praise to Him, worship Him and earnestly pray to Him. All of this is staring us in the face in the opening four verses. It’s a great start! But there is a further element. It is what I will call the evangelistic or missionary aspect: ”make known among the nations what he has done…tell of all his wonderful acts… (1, 2). ”Just standing in church singing praise songs to God is not enough; we then must go out from our churches into the world and proclaim what God has done.” Tom Hale: The applied Old Testament Commentary, p.900. There is this evangelistic spirit in the Old Testament. The Jews were not meant to keep the Lord to themselves, but share Him with the world (see Ps.9:1, 2). ”Hallelujah! Thank GOD! Pray to him by name! Tell everyone you meet what he has done! Sing him songs, belt out hymns, translate his wonders into music! Honor his holy name with Hallelujahs, you who seek GOD.” The Message.

It is a good thing to deliberately ”Remember” (5-7) God’s miracles. When I moved to Leeds in 1983, I was given a copy of a book entitled ‘Fifty glorious years’, produced by ‘Bridge Street’ church to celebrate their ‘golden’ anniversary. I read with excitement and joy various stories of people who were healed during the George Jeffries ‘crusade’, which proved a springboard for this little Christian community to grow significantly. These were remarkable ‘testimonies’ of healing, and I was soon to meet people who knew the individuals whose stories I read. They could verify the truth of the accounts. Even today I regularly think about that little book and am inspired by it. It is right to remember what the Lord has done, and even write it down. It will inspire others who come after us.

It is important to remember that God keeps His promises. This is the central theme of this psalm (compare 11 with 44, 45) He is as good as His Word. A covenant is a freely made commitment of God, a stated intention to be God to Abraham and His descendants, and that they will be His people.”It was made initially with Abraham (Genesis 12:1-3, 7; 15:7-21) and then confirmed with Isaac (Genesis 26:2-5) and with Jacob (Genesis 28:10-15). The particular aspect of the covenant emphasized in this psalm is the promise of the land (verse 11). Though individual Israelites might forfeit the enjoyment of the land because of disobedience, God’s promise of the land stands firm forever: God will remember His covenant!” Tom Hale: The Applied Old Testament Commentary, pp.900/901. Of course, it is true to say that God’s covenant with Abraham is not merely ancient history. We also are heirs of the promise given to Abraham (Romans 4:16, 17; Gal.3:6-9). This promise has been fulfilled in Jesus Christ through whom we receive the ”promised land” of an eternal home in heaven.

Prayer: I rest my life on your utter reliability Lord. You are always as good as your Word. Thank you.



Daily Bible thoughts 604: Monday 28th April 2014:

 2 Corinthians 5:11- 6:2

At the heart of the Easter faith there is this stupendous truth, expressed in (21), which has been called ‘the great exchange.’ All our sin was laid on Jesus, and we are given His righteousness when we respond positively to the gospel call to”Be reconciled to God.” (20). Someone said that at the cross it was as if Jesus became the world’s greatest sinner. When a person chooses to be reconciled to God, He sees them as being as sinless as Jesus from that moment on. Their sins are no longer counted against them (19).It’s a totally unfair exchange, but it is one Christ is totally willing to make out of His compelling love for us (14). ”God put the wrong on him who never did anything wrong, so we could be put right with God.” The Message.

Once you become a Christian you realise that your life is no longer your own. You’ve been bought with a price (15). You don’t just get a new start in life, but a new life to start with (17). Conversion is not about turning over a new leaf but receiving a new life.So as a brand new person you are equipped to live in a radically different way to the glory of God.

Part of this living for Jesus is a recognition that you are His ‘ambassador’ (20), through whom God will speak to the world about the ”reconciliation” He has already brought about in Christ (18, 19). What has been achieved must now be announced. God has given to the church ”the ministry of reconcilation” (18) and ‘‘has committed to us the message of reconciliation” (19). An ambassador is the highest representative of one country in the heart of another. We are citizens of heaven (Phil.3: 20) but we represent our ‘Government’ and King here on earth. We are authorised to be here and speak for Him, although our ambassadorial message will not always be well received (Eph.6: 20).

So, as ambassadors we will speak. That is a non-negotiable part of our role. We will speak with a conviction that Christ died for all (14). We will recognise that the church therefore has a responsibility to go to all with this message. ”God has given us the task of telling everyone what he is doing.” The Message.

But our lives will also speak (11, 12). There will be no credibility gap between our talk and our walk. We will seek to live in a way that embodies our verbal message. As ambassadors we will experience criticism (13). There will be those who dismiss us as ‘fruit cakes’ and say all manner of bad things about us in order to discredit the message they obviously fear. We are to expect such treatment. If it doesn’t come our way, or not much of it, we must realise that this is an abnormal situation. We can also add that love (indeed Christ’s own love: 14) will be our ‘motive power’. This is what will cause us to get ‘steam up’ and move steadily forward.

Prayer: Thank you Lord Jesus for the fire of your love burning in my ‘boiler’. Cause that fire to blaze ever more furiously.


Daily Bible thoughts 603: Friday 25th April 2014:

 Isaiah 2: 6 -22

Someone pointed out that in chapter 2 Isaiah begins by describing the ”ideal” (1-5), but then goes on to talk about the ”reality” of the situation. The people of Judah were not walking ”in the light of the LORD” (5) but clasping ”hands with pagans” (6). In other words, they were living as worldly people and not as godly. The challenge is to live godly lives in a godless world; to seek the ideal in the midst of imperfect reality (Matt.5:48).

So this was the ”reality” Isaiah faced: ”GOD, you’ve walked out on your family Jacob because their world is full of hokey religion, Philistine witchcraft, and pagan hocus-pocus, a world rolling in wealth, Stuffed with things, no end to its machines and gadgets, And gods – gods of all sorts and sizes. These people make their own gods and worship what they make. A degenerate race, facedown in the gutter.” The Message.

The key message in these verses is that a day of judgment is coming. It will be a day when the arrogance and pride of men is humbled. It will be a terrible day. People will try to hide from God’s ”dazzling presence’’ (10, 19 and 21) The Message, but they will be unable to do so. ”The LORD alone will be exalted in that day” (11b, 17b). That, of course, is how it should be in this day. True life is found now in worshipping God. (”Man’s chief end is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever.” The Westminster Shorter Catechism. ) This is what we were made for. (‘It’s GOD alone at front-and-center on the Day we’re talking about…” is how The Message puts it.) ”Pride is the attitude in man that leads him to exalt himself and put himself in the place of God; it is this attitude which leads a man to create his own ”gods” – idols – rather than worship the true God who created him! All manifestations of human pride will be brought low by God.” Tom Hale: The applied Old Testament Commentary, p.995. By the way, all the things mentioned in (13-16) are poetic representations of human pride. This comes across clearly in The Message: ”People with a big head are headed for a fall, pretentious egos brought down a peg, It’s GOD alone at front-and-center on the Day we’re talking about, The Day that GOD-of-the-Angel-Armies is matched against all big-talking rivals, against all swaggering big names; Against all giant sequoias hugely towering, and against the expansive chestnut; Against Kilimanjaro and Annapurna, against the ranges of Alps and Andes; Against every soaring skyscraper, against all proud obelisks and statues; Against ocean-going luxury liners, against elegant three-masted schooners. The swelled big heads will be punctured bladders, the pretentious egos brought down to earth, Leaving God alone at front-and-center on the Day we’re talking about.”

People trust in all manner of things:

  • Occultic/superstitious things (6);
  • Material things and wealth and trade (7a and 16a);
  • Military strength and fortifications (7b and 15);
  • gods of their own making (8 and 20);
  • Pleasure and leisure (16);
  • Man himself (22)

But you can only properly prepare for ‘the Day of the Lord’ if you abandon all these ‘idols’ (for that is what they are) and trust solely in God.

One final thought: a day of judgment is coming. But even in this life there can be ‘mini’ days of judgment on the way to the big one. Arrogance and pride so often get dealt with here and now. There can be an abandoning by God even while we live in the world (6; see also Rom.1: 18-32.)

Prayer: Help me Lord to trust you only.



Daily Bible thoughts 602: Thursday 24th April 2014:

Isaiah 2:1-5

I want to show immediately that there is a vital connection between verses 1 and 5. When God causes us to see a truth we then need to live ”in the light” of it, or rather ”in the light of the LORD” who gave it, and who is Himself light. Yesterday morning, in a church service, I believe God spoke to me clearly. It was a powerful and memorable moment. I now need to live in the light of what He showed me, and I’m pretty sure that at times it will be a fight to do so. The enemy of our souls would much prefer to consign us to the shadow lands.

Isaiah’s ‘vision’ had to do with ”the last days”. These are the days of the Messiah. They were inaugurated at the first coming of Christ and will be fulfilled finally at His second appearing. There are things here that are being fulfilled currently in the church, but there are other matters that probably will not be totally realised until the very end of time, and even after the return of Jesus to the earth. Here are at least five truths to ”walk in the light of”:

  • God will ‘elevate’ the church (2): He is building his church as a city on a hill so that it cannot be hidden. He doesn’t want to keep His work ‘under wraps’ but on display.
  • God will make His church a truly international community (2c, 3a): ”…all nations will stream to it. Many peoples will come…” The church will draw in men and women, boys and girls from all over the world, and so the Lord’s original plan to bless all peoples through Abraham and his descendants will come to pass (Gen.12:1-3). ”All nations will river toward it, people from all over set out for it.” The Message.
  • God will cause His church to be attractive and magnetic (3b): This is not about our publicity saying, ”Come ” (although there is admittedly a place for that.) This refers to such a movement of God that people are saying to each other: ”Come, let us go up…’ This is about men fishing for men and catching men. They are saying to each other: ”He’ll show us the way he works so we can live the way we’re made.” The Message.
  • The church is meant to get the Word of God out (3c). We are not meant to keep it locked up within our tight little Christian community. This wonderful prophecy (also found in Micah 4:1-5) shows an inflowing of people but also an outflowing of God’s Word.
  • God will one day establish world peace (4): He will actually do this. We can and should work for peace and we will be blessed if we are peace makers (Matt.5:9), but only the Lord will be able to usher in an era of world peace. Even listening to the news today we are reminded of how difficult it is for people to resolve conflicts, and that we live with ”wars and rumours of wars’’ (Matt.24:6) as the background noise of life. But if today’s headlines distress you, remember what God will do in just a little while. Verse 4 is ”on a block of granite outside the United Nations headquarters in New York. It’s a pity that they didn’t quote the whole verse, for it starts, ‘He shall judge among the nations…’ Without God to judge between the nations, there is no way that anyone will ever manage to complete the second half of the verse.” J.D. Pawson: Unlocking the Bible, p.499.

So, as we read this passage, let’s be clear about what God will do and what we are called to do: a.) He will build His international church with ‘many’. We can expect great church growth across the world; b.)He will ensure that people flow in and the Word goes out; c.)He will bring in world peace;

We are to walk in the light of all He shows us. Let’s play our part; He will surely play His.

Prayer: Thank you Lord that we, your people, get to be workers together with you. But let me always be clear about my role and never confuse it with yours.






Daily Bible thoughts 601: Wednesday 23rd April 2014:

 Isaiah 1:21-31

It is so sad to watch a good thing go bad. This is never more so than where it concerns spiritual things. Jerusalem was not what she once was! (21). Look at the words ”once” and ”used to”. The once ”faithful city” of Jerusalem has become a ”harlot”. Its citizens have committed spiritual adultery by chasing after other gods (lovers!). We see something of that later on in the chapter. ”Your dalliances in those oak grove shrines will leave you looking mighty foolish, All that fooling around in god and goddess gardens that you thought was the latest thing. You’ll end up like an oak tree with all its leaves falling off.” (29, 30a) The Message. The practical and terrible result of this idolatry is social injustice (22, 23). After all, a people will only ever be as good as their gods. ”She was once all justice, everyone living as good neighbours, And now they’re all at one another’s throats…Your leaders are turncoats who keep company with crooks. They sell themselves to the highest bidder and grab anything not nailed down.” The Message. The encouraging thing is that God says He will ”purge” and ”restore” the city (25, 26.) But it will be a painful work: ” I’ll give you the back of my hand, purge the junk from your life, clean you up. I’ll set honest judges and wise counselors among you just like it was at the beginning. Then you’ll be renamed City-That-Treats-People-Right, the True-Blue City…GOD’s right ways will put Zion right again. GOD’s right actions will restore her penitents. The Message. As someone observed, God loves His people far too much to allow the process of deterioration to continue.

There were lots of ”mighty” men in that society, apparently doing really well for themselves (31). They had their heads deep in the trough. But ” ‘The Big Man’ will turn out to be dead bark and twigs, and his ‘work’ the spark that starts the fire.” There is much injustice abroad in the world, but sooner or later God will balance the scales.

As we conclude this first chapter remember this: ”Sin breaks God’s heart, cheapens a nation or an individual, and invites the judgment of God. God graciously offers His forgiveness if we will repent (vv.18-20). It is good to pray, ”Wash me” (Ps.51:7), but keep in mind that God says, ”Wash yourselves” (Isa.1:16). Paul wrote, ”Let us cleanse ourselves” (2 Cor.7:1). Follow that advice and keep yourself clean!” Warren.W. Wiersbe: With the Word, p.453

Prayer: Thank you Lord that because you love so much you also chasten so faithfully.


Daily Bible thoughts 600: Tuesday 22nd April 2014:

Isaiah 1:10-20

”…whoever divided Isaiah into chapters did a rather interesting thing, though I doubt whether it was deliberate. They divided the book into 66 chapters, the same number as the books of the Bible. Furthermore, they divided Isaiah into two distinct parts of 39 chapters and 27 chapters. It just happens that the Old Testament has 39 books and the New Testament 27. Also, the message of the first 39 chapters summarizes the message of the Old Testament, and the message of the last 27 chapters summarizes exactly the message of the New Testament! The second part of Isaiah (i.e. chapter 40) begins with the voice crying in the wilderness, ‘Prepare the way for the Lord’ – words later used by John the Baptist. It moves on to a servant of the Lord who is anointed by the Holy Spirit, dies for the sins of his people, and is raised and exalted after his death. It then moves on to the declaration that ‘You shall be my witnesses to the ends of the earth’, and it finishes up with God saying, ‘I am making all things new. I create a new heaven and a new earth.’ In other words, if somebody took the whole Bible and squeezed it into one book, you’d finish up with the prophecy of Isaiah. It is the Bible in miniature.” J.D.Pawson:’Unlocking the Bible’, pp.497,498

Well, continuing to work through chapter 1, you see how in (10-14) Isaiah addresses the people of Judah as if they themselves were the wicked inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrah (see also 9). God has no pleasure in lavish sacrifices and numerous meetings if they are empty rituals, without heart, and do not positively affect lives (1 Sam.15:22; Prov.15:8; 21:27). ”Quit your worship charades. I can’t stand your trivial religious games: Monthly conferences, weekly Sabbaths, special meetings – I can’t stand one more! Meetings for this, meetings for that. I hate them! You’ve worn me out! I’m sick of your religion, religion, religion, while you go right on sinning.” The Message. There is always a possibility that God may hate some of the services we love. We congratulate ourselves on ‘a really blessed time’, but did it bless the Lord? That’s the key question.

God will not listen to our prayers if we cherish sin (15; Ps.66:18). He is not interested in mere words. He looks for the fruit of repentance (16, 17; Mt.3:8; Lk.19:8,9). ”Go home and wash up. Clean up your act. Sweep your lives clean of your evildoings so I don’t have to look at them any longer. Say no to wrong. Learn to do good. Work for justice. Help the down-and-out. Stand up for the homeless. Go to bat for the defenseless.” The Message.

These words are followed by a beautiful promise (18-20). No matter how much God hates their sin, if they are truly repentant (willing and obedient) their sins will be washed away as if they had never existed. But if they persist in their sins they will be punished. So, through Isaiah, ‘the evangelical prophet’, the Lord offers them the same choice He put to their ancestors: blessings or curses, life or death (Lev.26:3-39; Deut.30:15-20). Still today we must choose. These options remain before us. Will we turn to Christ or remain turned away from Him? We too can know the slate wiped clean and a fresh start. But there has to be a willingness to turn to the Lord.

Prayer: Thank you Lord for the beauty and the wonder of the total forgiveness you offer through Jesus. I stand amazed.


Daily Bible thoughts 599: Monday 21st April 2014:

 Isaiah 1: 1-9

Today we embark on what will be a long journey through one of the big prophetic books in the Bible. At the outset I am going to quote from Eugene Peterson’s introductory notes in The Message:

”Isaiah is a large presence in the lives of people who live by faith in God, who submit themselves to being shaped by the Word of God and are on the lookout for the holy. The Holy. The characteristic name for God in Isaiah is ”The Holy.” As we read this large and comprehensive gathering of messages that were preached to the ancient people of Israel, we find ourselves immersed in both the presence and action of The Holy…Holiness is a furnace that transforms the men and women who enter it…”Symphony” is the term many find useful to capture the fusion of simplicity and complexity presented in the book of Isaiah. The major thrust is clearly God’s work of salvation: ”The Salvation Symphony” (the name Isaiah means ”God Saves”). The prominent themes repeated and developed throughout this vast symphonic work are judgment, comfort and hope. All three elements are present on nearly every page, but each also gives distinction to the three ”movements” of the book that so powerfully enact salvation: Messages of Judgment (chapters 1 – 39), Messages of Comfort (chapters 40 – 55), and Messages of Hope (chapters 56 – 66).”

You will see in these opening verses that Isaiah, whose name means ”Yahweh (the LORD) is salvation’ ‘prophesied for at least forty years, during the reigns of four kings of Judah (1). These kings ruled in Judah from 792 to 686 B.C.

In (2-4) the Lord calls on heaven and earth to hear His complaints against His own family: ”Heaven and earth, you’re the jury. Listen to GOD’s case: ”I had children and raised them well, and they turned on me. The ox knows who’s boss, the mule knows the hand that feeds him, But not Israel. My people don’t know up from down…My people have walked out on me, their GOD, turned their backs on the Holy of Israel, walked off and never looked back.” The Message. This was true of both the northern kingdom of Israel and the southern kingdom of Judah, but Isaiah’s main focus was on Judah and its capital city Jerusalem (1).

Verses 5 – 9 show Judah almost destroyed. The description is thought to fit well with Judah’s situation during the invasion of the Assyrian king Sennacherib (2 Kings 8:13). At that time the city was under siege (2 Kings 18:17 – 37). Whether or not that is correct we cannot be certain, but we do see once again that if we do not turn from our sin and back to God we end up nowhere good.

How many parents are there who grieve over wayward children? They will especially be able to identify with God’s heart displayed in today’s reading. You love your sons and daughters so much, but they have rebelled against you and the standards you hold dear. They show no (or little) appreciation of you. You never hear from them. They are not in sympathy with you in terms of the things that matter to you most.

Prodigals should take note that the ‘pig sty’ awaits (5-9). There is trouble ahead for those who abandon Father and home. (But, even among the pig pens there is hope, as you will know if you are aware of the details of Jesus’ famous story.)

Prayer: Thank you Father God that you are waiting, watching for your ‘prodigals’ to return. Although we do not love like you, we stand with you today, looking down the road for any sign of a returning, much-loved figure. I pray especially for…. (you fill in the blank).


Daily Bible thoughts 598: Friday 18th April 2014:

Proverbs 21:17- 26

We continue to work our way through these wonderful wise sayings recorded in the Bible.

Verse 17 reads like this in The Message: ”You’re addicted to thrills? What an empty life! The pursuit of pleasure is never satisfied.” Many a person can testify that following after ‘Hedonism’, the belief that pleasure is the highest good, is a dead – end Street. Solomon knew this from experience. (See Ecc.2:1-11; 1 Tim.6:10; 1 John 2:15-17). We can enjoy life’s good pleasures as gifts from God, but if we go after them as ends in themselves, and look for meaning in them we will be bitterly disappointed.

”What a bad person plots against the good, boomerangs; the plotter gets it in the end.” (18) The Message. The righteous will be delivered from trouble. The trouble will come upon the wicked person instead. The wicked will serve as a ‘‘ransom’’ to free the righteous (see Prov.11:8). Remember that ‘Proverbs’ is dealing in general principles. It is not stating what unfailingly happens, but what regularly happens. (Although in eternal terms it always comes to pass. What the wicked have done will bounce back on them, if they do not repent.)

There is undisguised humour in the self-evident truth of (19). It is a terrible thing to have an unhappy home life; to try to live amidst perpetual conflict. You are better off single than in a marriage like that. It would be better to live alone than have to try to share life with a continually angry partner. The cloud they live under will also cover you and make your world dark and grey.

There is wisdom in saving and not squandering (20). Foolish people can’t keep their money. They have to blow it today, and then they are in need tomorrow. They live now and pay later.

If you seek to be right with God and live right, many other good things will come to you unsought (21; see also Prov. 3:1-4; Matt.5:6; 6:33). ”Whoever goes hunting for what is right and kind finds life itself –glorious life! The Message. Put first things first and everything else will follow in rightful order.

”One sage entered a whole city of armed soldiers -their trusted defenses fell to pieces.” (22) The Message. The point here is that wisdom is more effective than strength. The ”weapons” of the wise (godly) man are spiritual, not physical, and they have ”divine power to demolish strongholds.” (2 Cor.10:4).

Here are some final thoughts in today’s passage

You can save yourself a lot of trouble by keeping your mouth shut! (23).

You don’t want to be like this person (24). He is a negative example to avoid.

You certainly don’t want to be like the ‘sluggard’ (25, 26), that is a lazy individual. ”Lazy people finally die of hunger because they won’t get up and go to work. Sinners are always wanting what they don’t have; the God-loyal are always giving what they do have.” The Message. It is one of the marks of a righteous life that you are generous. Such a life is not ”empty” (17) but one of fulfillment and joy.

Prayer: Lord God, please continue to renew my mind and transform my life. Thank you for your peerless wisdom.


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