Key Verse: 1 Samuel 6:20
And the men of Beth Shemesh said, “Who is able to stand before this holy Lord God? And to whom shall it go up from us?”
In today’s reading we learn of the different ways of handling the Ark of the Covenant. First, the Philistines of Ashdod offended God, and then the Israelites of Beth Shemesh, who knew better, treated the Ark as an article of curiosity, failing to respect the symbol of God’s Presence as Moses had instructed them. The Philistines may have thought they were honouring the God of Israel by placing the Ark in the Temple of Dagon, but instead they abused Him. They failed to understand that God does not share worship with an idol. We can look up in our Bibles the proper way to handle the Ark. The people to whom the cattle brought the ark may not have had immediate access to the scrolls with the instructions. Ignorance, in this case, was no excuse.
We have the assurance that since Jesus came, we can stand before God with reverence, worshipping Him. We must not take Him for granted or presume upon His mercy. It’s true that Jesus changed our approach to God. The excruciating suffering and death of Christ is ample proof that our holy God is outraged by sin in all its forms. We throw ourselves on His grace and mercy.
PRAYER FOR TODAY:
Lord God, I come boldly to Your throne of grace. According to Your Word in Hebrews 4:16, I receive mercy and find grace in my time of need. Please help me to always approach You with all reverence and total respect, knowing that Jesus, our great High Priest, has gone before me with His blood sprinkled on the Mercy Seat of the Ark in the heavens. In His Name I pray. Amen!
100 PERSONAL WORDS:
I lived on my uncle’s farm for six years while my Dad was away from our family during WW2. Three years after his return, Dad accepted a call to two rural congregations filled with farmers. I spent much time on their farms, learning all about cattle, and then I worked full time on farms for five summers. I know first-hand that the natural way for a cow that has just given birth to a calf to behave is to remain beside that calf. What we read about today is not natural but supernatural. God always retains the right to intervene, changing patterns of behaviour to bring about His purposes. Animals are not made in God’s image as humans are. They function by pre-programmed instinct. I’ve learned that I am not like that. I must deliberately give my will over to God’s will, obeying His instructions. When I decide to follow Him, I know that supernatural provision for my journey will be provided as I go.
Yours for decisions to follow God’s instructions more closely,