Thursday, July 14, 2011

July 14- A Heart For God

July 14, 2011

Scripture Readings:
1 Chronicles 16:37-18:17; Romans 2:1-24;
Psalm 10:16-18; Proverbs 19:8-9

Amazing grace! (how sweet the sound)
That saved a wretch like me.
I once was lost, but now am found,
Was blind, but now I see.
~John Newton

1 Chronicles 16:37-18:17

On May 10, 1748, the young captain of a slave ship named John Newton cried out to God to save his ship and his men from a violent storm.  When all seemed lost and he thought that the ship would surely sink, John Newton asked the Lord to have mercy on them all.  God did deliver the ship through the storm, and John Newton grabbed a hold of God's grace and subjected his own will from that moment on to the will of His Creator.  After this incident, which he describes as the day of his conversion, Newton became a man with a heart for God.  This heart manifested itself in Newton becoming a self-taught student of the Scripture, a pastor to a thriving church in England, and the writer of over 280 hymns.  Newton's heart for God brought songs of joy into his life.  Because of his heart for God, you and I have the wonderful hymn, Amazing Grace.  Today, David is another model to us of a person who has a heart for God.

With a passion for all things godly, David sets out to honor God in many ways.  Today's passage sets an outline for what it is to have a heart for God.  David's actions and attitudes are a journal of love.  Here are actions and heart attitudes that reflect David's heart for God:
  • David reinstitutes regular sacrifices at the house of God in obedience to His laws. Vs. 40
  • David implements and participates in joyful worship of God through music.  Vs. 41
  • David desires to build a Temple for God. Chapter 17:1
  • David consults God and listens to God. Vs. 4-10
  • God tells David that He will build David a permanent house by giving him a dynasty of kings. Vs. 10-14
  • David is humble before God. He is shocked that God is speaking to him as if he is someone great.  As a earthly king, this shows great humility -Vs. 16-17
  • David admits that God knows what he is really like, admitting that he is a sinner before a holy God.  -Vs. 18
  • David praises God. - Vs. 20
  • David recounts God's mighty acts and blessings. -Vs. 21-23
  • David glorifies God with his words. -Vs. 24
  • David claims God's promises. -Vs. 25-26
  • With power from God, David defeats God's enemies.  -Chapter 18:1-13
  • David reigns justly on earth. -Vs. 14
If you are wondering if you have a heart for God, you can look at this list in order to judge for yourself.  Do you worship Him, consult and listen to Him, humble yourself and admit that you are a sinner, praise God for who He is, recount with thanksgiving His mighty acts, claim His promises, defeat His enemies on earth, and conduct your life in an honorable and honest fashion?  If so, you have a heart for God!

Romans 2:1-24

Today, Paul is encouraging the Romans to admit that they are sinners.  Paul recounted how the rebellious fall into wickedness.  He then reminds the Romans that they, too, are guilty of sin. God is merciful and kind and He is giving all people on earth time to repent of their sin.  Paul encourages them to not judge others, but to look at their own lives to recognize that all people are guilty as charged.

Part of the good news that Paul is preaching includes understanding the bad news about sin.  The bad news is that there is going to be a judgment day in the future.  God, who is the just judge, will judge all people according to what they have done on earth.  This will be based on God's law, which is written down and known to the Jew, and this law is seen in the Gentiles because in their hearts they instinctively know right from wrong. Jesus is the one who will judge every one's secret life.  This means that Christ knows all of every one's actions and He understands the motivations behind every one's actions.  Paul confirms that this is his main message to the Romans.  There will be an accounting for sin.

For the Jew who is convinced that he (as a Jew) is a teacher to the whole world about righteousness because God's Law came through the Jews, Paul warns the Jews to not boast.  For it is the Jew who is a hypocrite and is breaking the laws he proposes to teach.

This ends our reading in Romans for today.  Paul's argument goes on and is incomplete at this point.  What shall we learn from this portion of his dissertation on man's sinfulness?

Lessons:  God is merciful and is providing mankind time to admit that they are sinners. This is the world's opportunity to repent. People who do not have access to the Law are still responsible for their sin, because the law of right and wrong is written on all human hearts.  God will judge sin. The Law shows us that we are sinners.  If you are aware of the Law and are not following it, you are a sinner.

So, I guess we get the point.  We are sinners.  People who have a heart for God can admit that they are sinners.

Is this a hard concept for you to admit?  Do you do everything right all the time?  Are you able to perfectly love others?  If not, you are a sinner.

Psalm 10:16-18

God is a king who brings comfort to the oppressed.  He rules justly.

Proverbs 19:8-9

Liars will be destroyed.

What did you notice today?


Jubilee Gal
Kathy Fullerton

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