Digging in Deeper: Revelation 9:20-21

“The rest of mankind, who were not killed by these plagues, did not repent of the works of their hands nor give up worshiping demons and idols of gold and silver and bronze and stone and wood, which cannot see or hear or walk, nor did they repent of their murders or their sorceries or their sexual immorality or their thefts.”  (ESV – Read the chapter)

This is the real key of this chapter and, really, one of the main themes of the entire record.  There appear to be two goals of the various acts of cataclysmic judgments described in Revelation.  One goal is the punishment of sin.  God has been patient long enough and now it is time for judgment.  It is time to let people see and experience the full weight of their sin.  Just like with the nation of Israel in the days leading up to and during the conquest of Jerusalem and the exile, the time for the whole world has come up and sin is finally being judged on a large scale. Read the rest…

Morning Musings: Psalm 106:45

“For their sake he remembered his covenant, and relented according to the abundance of his steadfast love.”  (ESV – Read the chapter)

God doesn’t have mercy on us for His sake.  He doesn’t extend to us His steadfast love because it does something for Him.  He does it for us.  He does it because His love naturally moves outward and we are the only creatures in the world made in His image.  He does not deal with us according to our deeds, but quickly offers mercy when we cry out to Him for our sake.  He doesn’t want to see us destroyed.  He wants to see us live abundantly and flourish. Read the rest…

Morning Musings: Psalm 103:8-12

“The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.  He will not always chide, nor will he keep his anger forever.  He does not deal with us according to our sins, nor repay us according to our iniquities.  For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him; as far as the east is from the west, so far does he remove our transgressions from us.”  (ESV – Read the chapter)

For anyone who would argue that the God of the Old Testament is somehow different from the God of the New Testament by being much angrier and more focused on judgment, you have to explain away passages like this one.  And this is not the only time this characterization appears in the Old Testament.   Read the rest…

Digging in Deeper: 1 Chronicles 13:10

“And the anger of the Lord was kindled against Uzzah, and he struck him down because he put out his hand to the ark, and he died there before God.”  (ESV – read the chapter)

This is another of those hard verses in the Old Testament that we struggle to understand.  Why would God strike Uzzah down like this?  What exactly did he do that was so wrong it justified an immediate death sentence?  It sure seems like all he did was touch the ark.  Why was that such a big deal?

Read the rest…