Observations from today’s readings and today’s S-WOD, Friday, 2 Mar 18:
1. Numbers 3:12 — “Behold, I have taken the Levites from among the people of Israel instead of every firstborn who opens the womb among the people of Israel. The Levites shall be mine.” The priests of God are living sacrifices, their earthly lives are essentially over as they devote everything to God – “I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.” (Romans 12:1) “You yourselves like living stones are being built up as a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.” (1 Peter 2:5)
2. Numbers 3:25 – Guard duty was an act of worship. All that we do should be an act of worship before the Lord, dedicated to Him and His purposes, motivated by love for Him rather than motivated by fear, pride, or obligation.
3. Proverbs 2:6 — “For the Lord gives wisdom; from his mouth come knowledge and understanding.” Who are you listening to?
4. Proverbs 2:10 – “Wisdom will come into your heart.” God’s word will change your heart.
5. Acts 17:1-3 — True preaching focuses on the person of Jesus Christ.
6. Acts 17:11, 12 — “Now these Jews were more noble than those in Thessalonica; they received the word with all eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so. Many of them therefore believed, with not a few Greek women of high standing as well as men.” The Bereans were nobler than the rest because they did not just accept the teachings of Paul, despite his credentials, but rather diligently studied the word of God for themselves, testing Paul’s teachings by going to the source. This is a model for us. As a “kingdom of priests,” we should all strive to be Biblical scholars. One of the primary challenges we face in the church today is that most Christians are biblically illiterate despite the incredible access we enjoy to the Bible and to study resources. Ironically, many Christians are being “taught” the Bible by agenda-driven humanists through universities, television, and other media. Many other Christians simply rely on their pastors to feed them the word. While we all need strong pastors and teachers, they are no substitutes for personal, diligent Bible study. We should be like the Bereans. Finally, note from today’s readings how while Paul taught the Bible and “reasoned with them from the Scriptures,” he was violently attacked by “some wicked men of the rabble” who were not interested in reasonable debate but rather were only interested in shutting down the dialogue with force if necessary. We will see the more and more today. Be bold and well-read.
7. Acts 17:23 – Most people are searching for God in some way.
8. Acts 17:27-28 – God makes it easy to find Him if you are looking.
“Cross” Fit S-WOD (Spiritual Workout of the Day) – 2 March: Whatever you are holding back from the Lord, surrender it today. (Numbers 3:12; Romans 12:1; 1 Peter 2:5)