Key Verses: Ezekiel 13:10b & 14:20
…and one builds a wall, and they plaster it with untempered mortar. “…even though Noah, Daniel, and Job were in it, as I live,” says the Lord God, “they would deliver neither son nor daughter; they would deliver only themselves by their righteousness.”
To temper clay and make it long-lasting mortar, it is essential to add strengthening substances which will improve the hardness, the consistency, and the resiliency of the mortar, so that walls will last for centuries. Ezekiel, over and over, mentions predictions made by “divination,” “magic charms,” and other occult practises, as well as those “who follow their own spirit and have seen nothing.” All of these deceptions are still with us today. From the palm reader or psychic, whose signs we see by the roadside, to persons who manipulate others by claiming to give personal prophecies and direct the decisions made, falsely claiming a “word from God.” Let us be very careful, remembering that the “word of prophecy” mentioned by Paul is for “edification of the church,” not personal guidance (read 1 Corinthians 14:3, 14:12).
Noah, Daniel (who was already a leader when Ezekiel arrived in Babylon), and Job were tempered, made strong, consistent and resilient by their obedience and by hard lessons they had to learn. Their stories, and the truths they imparted, have lasted much longer than the wall in Reynold’s photograph, but even they could not save their children. Each generation must have a first-hand encounter with God for themselves (14:14, 14:16, 14:20). Check out Noah (Genesis 6:5-9), Daniel (Daniel 5:10-17 & 6:16-23), and Job (Job 42:10-17).
PRAYER FOR TODAY:
Lord God, I pray that You will place the ingredients into my life and character so that I will be a person of integrity, consistency, and strength. Lord Jesus Christ (Messiah) You have come to live in me by Your Spirit, according to Your promise to everyone who believes in You (“in”…not just about). Therefore, I confess that Your “strength is made perfect in [my] weakness” (2 Corinthians 12:9-10). Amen!!!
100 PERSONAL WORDS:
Not long ago, Norma-Jean and I visited the hotel where Martin Luther King was shot and murdered in Memphis, and by tunnel we walked under the street to stand on the very spot where the shooter committed this unspeakable crime. I wept as the history of those awful times coursed through my mind and heart. Also, we visited “Graceland,” the home of Elvis Presley and where he tragically died. I was sobered to remember his life and career. He loved to sing Gospel songs, and I’ve met some of the Gospel quartet members who tell me that Elvis would want to sing hymns and Gospel songs late into the night. They said that he would weep as he sang. Elvis, I’m told, would ride the Sunday School bus as a child to the First Assembly of God, at one time the largest Sunday School in America, where he heard the Good News of Jesus and asked Jesus to come into his life. During his teen years, he continued to attend, and he also attended a great local African-American Church, where he particularly loved the music. The influences were certainly evident in Elvis’ music. Pastor Hamill, who participated in inviting me in the mid 1970’s to be the host of an internationally released TV series called, Turning Point, the official TV voice of the Assemblies of God, said that throughout his life, no matter where in the world Elvis was, he would travel home to Memphis for Easter Sunday Services. After service, the Pastor said Elvis would hold his head in his hands, weeping, and saying, “Oh Pastor, its so hard out there in the world to live as a true Christian.” The Pastor would lay hands on Elvis, pray for him, and bless him. I think everyone who knows about Elvis draws their own conclusions about his life (click here for Elvis singing “How Great Thou Art”).
Yours for God to add His strength through the daily reading of His Word to the “mortar” of our lives,