Morning Musing: Zephaniah 3:8-9

“Therefore, wait for me — this is the Lord’s declaration — until the day I rise up for plunder. For my decision is to gather nations, to assemble kingdoms, in order to pour out my indignation on them, all my burning anger; for the whole earth will be consumed by the fire of my jealousy. For I will then restore pure speech to the peoples so that all of them may call on the name of the Lord and serve him with a single purpose.”
— ‭‭Zephaniah‬ ‭3:8-9‬‬ (CSB – Read the chapter)

I remember reading the first Lord of the Rings book when I was in college. The only thing I regretted was that I waited so long to read it. I eventually burned through the second and third books on a single week trip to South Carolina with my family that summer. After finishing the first book, I remember talking to a friend and being absolutely distraught that Gandalf had died in the end. He just smiled a knowing smile and said, “Keep reading.” What He knew was that the story wasn’t over. That’s a pretty good reminder for what we see here.

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Morning Musing: Nahum 2:2

“For the Lord will restore the majesty of Jacob, yes, the majesty of Israel, though ravagers have ravaged them and ruined their vine branches.”‬‬ (CSB – Read the chapter)

One of the things we try and teach our kids is that they shouldn’t delight at someone else’s misfortune. Doing that is natural. We tend to think about life as a zero-sum gain affair. Someone else winning means we’re losing. Their losing, therefore, must mean we are winning. But that’s not the way of Christ. How are we supposed to teach them this lesson well, though, when we see Nahum, whose name means “comfort,” offering as much to Israel by prophesying the destruction of Assyria?

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Morning Musing: Micah 7:18-20

“Who is a God like you, forgiving iniquity and passing over rebellion for the remnant of his inheritance? He does not hold on to his anger forever because he delights in faithful love. He will again have compassion on us; he will vanquish our iniquities. You will cast all our sins into the depths of the sea. You will show loyalty to Jacob and faithful love to Abraham, as you swore to our ancestors from days long ago.”‬‬ (CSB – Read the chapter)

When you are writing or speaking one of the things you want to keep in mind is that people will tend to remember the last thing you say better than all the rest. This means you need to make sure to save your best stuff for last. With that in mind, when reading through an individual document in the Scriptures, we do well to pay special attention to what the author saved for the end. That’s the thing he most wants us to keep in mind. So, what do we find at the end of Micah’s collection of prophecy? Let’s take a look and talk about it.

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Digging in Deeper: Micah 6:8 (Round two)

“Mankind, he has told each of you what is good and what it is the Lord requires of you: to act justly, to love faithfulness, and to walk humbly with your God.”
— ‭‭Micah‬ ‭6:8‬‬ (CSB – Read the chapter)

So, yesterday we talked about the sarcastic response the people had to God’s case against them. God’s case was that they had left Him without cause. Their response was to sarcastically ask what He wanted from them? Bowed knees? A sacrifice? A thousand sacrifices? Their own children sacrificed? What would make Him happy? From there we talked about the fact that we sometimes feel similarly in our own lives. What does God want from us? What is it we can do that will make Him happy? Today, we get an answer.

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Digging in Deeper: Jonah 1:17

“The Lord appointed a great fish to swallow Jonah, and Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights.”‬‬ (CSB – Read the chapter)

Have you ever felt like you’ve had a rough day? Have you ever felt like everything is falling apart around you and the pieces keep getting smaller and smaller such that trying to put them back together is looking like an increasingly hopeless project? Whenever that depressing feeling is pressing in on you and despair is starting to take hold in your heart, tell yourself this one little things and feel better about your situation: At least I’m not sitting in the belly of a giant fish.

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