Digging in Deeper: Mark 1:16-18

“As he passed alongside the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and Andrew, Simon’s brother, casting a net into the sea–for they were fisherman. ‘Follow me,’ Jesus told them, ‘and I will make you fish for people.’ Immediately they left their nets and followed him.” (CSB – Read the chapter)

Would you follow Jesus if He came calling? If you’re already a Jesus follower, I suspect your answer to that question was a quick and enthusiastic, “Yes!” If He came calling out of nowhere and you were already in the groove of your life, though, would you really drop everything and follow Him? If you’re not already doing it, the answer just may not be quite so affirming. Now as a follower of Jesus, if He came and asked you to leave everything familiar and go some place new, would you do it? These men did and it changed the world. Let’s look at why they did it.

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Morning Musing: Malachi 2:17

“You have wearied the Lord with your words. Yet you ask, ‘How have we wearied him?’ When you say, ‘Everyone who does what is evil is good in the Lord’s sight, and he is delighted with them, or else where is the God of justice?'” (CSB – Read the chapter)

Have your kids ever worn you out? If you are a parent, then the answer to that question is almost assuredly a resounding, “Yes!” That’s just part of the journey of parenthood. The older kids get, the more they begin to look for ways they can assert their growing sense of independence. Unfortunately, that sense of independence does not develop as fast as a spirit of wisdom and discernment regarding the prudence of the choices they make. That is, they may think they’re good, but they still need their parents for guidance and direction. This, of course, creates a tension that can be pretty draining. Well, if you are a parent who has felt this before, you can rest assured that you’re not alone. Not only are there other parents who feel the same way from time to time, but so does your heavenly Father.

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Morning Musing: Zechariah 6:15

“People who are far off will come and build the Lord’s temple, and you will know that the Lord of Armies has sent me to you. This will happen when you fully obey the Lord your God.”‬‬ (CSB – Read the chapter)

Every contract has terms and conditions. These are the things written in fine print at the bottom of the page that most people don’t bother to read very closely. I remember being somewhere that I actually took time to read it and the person waiting for me to sign was not happy that I was being that guy. But if there’s a catch, that is where it will be. Well, what Israel had with God wasn’t a contract, but what Zechariah says here is a bit like some fine print.

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Morning Musing: Zephaniah 1:12-13

“And at that time I will search Jerusalem with lamps and punish those who settled down comfortably, who say to themselves: The Lord will do nothing–good or bad. Their wealth will become plunder and their houses a ruin. They will build houses but never live in them, plant vineyards but never drink their wine.” (CSB – Read the chapter)

Lisa and I have recently been watching through a series that popped up on our Hulu account called “Extreme Homes.” The show takes viewers inside a whole variety of houses that are “extreme” in one way or another. Some are small, some are huge, but they are all unique. But while they come in all shapes and sizes, the one thing they all have in common is that they are owned by people who are wealthy. They are homes built with the intention of being able to set aside all worries and concerns and just enjoy life. In many ways, that’s not just the American dream, but the dream of everyone, everywhere. Based on what God says to the people of Judah here, though, it sounds like it might be more of a nightmare.

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Digging in Deeper: Zephaniah 1:8-9

“On the day of the Lord’s sacrifice I will punish the officials, the king’s sons, and all who are dressed in foreign clothing. On that day I will punish all who skip over the threshold, who fill their master’s house with violence and deceit.”‬‬ (CSB – Read the chapter)

All religion is just superstition given official sanction. Something along those lines is a common critique of religious people and their religions. And, to a certain extent, there is a small amount of truth to it. Religious people often do buy into any number of silly superstitions. Also, not a few religious rituals are little more than dressed up superstitions. But to paint with such a broad brush is to risk missing a key observation: The God of the Bible hates superstitions just as much as your scientific, secular neighbor professes to hate them.

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