WEEK 9, Day 1, Monday, 28 February 2022

https://esv.literalword.com/?q=exodus+7%3B+acts+13

Observations from today’s readings and today’s S-WOD, day, 28 February 2022:

Exodus 7:5 – “The Egyptians shall know that I am the Lord, when I stretch out my hand against Egypt and bring out the people of Israel from among them.”

God had a plan that was much bigger than just helping the Jews – He intended to glorify Himself to those who did not know Him, to the whole world and for all future generations. The Jews saw circumstances from their perspective and complained, but God had a much greater good in mind. Understand that God has a plan for your life that places Him at the center, even at the expense of your comfort and desires. However, also understand that though God’s plan might call for discomfort in your life, His plan is always best for you too, the product of a perfectly loving God. If you see life from your perspective, you will only be frustrated and joyless. If you keep God in the center, seek to understand God’s will, truly pray the Lord’s Prayer in your heart – “Thy will be done….” — you will find peace and joy in the midst of any circumstance and you will be in a position to be used mightily by God.

Exodus 7:6, 7 – “Moses and Aaron did so; they did just as the Lord commanded them. Now Moses was eighty years old, and Aaron eighty-three years old, when they spoke to Pharaoh.”

Moses and Aaron had come to a place in their lives where they were willing to obey God despite the apparent impracticability of the assignment or the apparent cost; it took over 80 years for them to get to that place. How long will it take before you are willing to do “just as the Lord commanded”? Then, you will be very usable.

Exodus 7:11-13 – Then Pharaoh summoned the wise men and the sorcerers, and they, the magicians of Egypt, also did the same by their secret arts. For each man cast down his staff, and they became serpents. But Aaron’s staff swallowed up their staffs. Still Pharaoh’s heart was hardened, and he would not listen to them, as the LORD had said.

World philosophies claim to be just as powerful as Christianity, claiming to produce the same results in your life as God. The world will point to many philosophies for relief of mankind’s problems, which at first, appear to produce results. However, these false Gospels only mislead people from the Truth, Jesus, and all lead to death. Christians point only to Jesus Christ. Just as in the time of Moses, we are in a contest of beliefs. Our mission is to help guide people to the Truth. So, be careful not to adopt and repeat any of the false narratives out there which suggestion that salvation can be found in human effort and human institutions. We are ambassadors for Christ, not for current philosophies, moralities, or parties. Stay true to your calling to proclaim Christ alone. Ultimately, the Gospel will consume all other philosophies.

Exodus 7:19 – “…there shall be blood throughout all the land of Egypt, even in vessels of wood and in vessels of stone.”

It is comical how historians attempt to find natural causes for God’s supernatural work. In the modern movie “Exodus,” the Nile turns to blood because of rampant crocodile attacks. Here we see that the Bible points out that all water turned to blood. Hollywood doesn’t mention that. When science becomes a person’s religion, they leave no room for supernatural, power beyond what can be observed and explained by the human intellect, as if the created thing could ever fully conceive of that which created it. When these humanists see the unexplainable, they have to create a false science, a pseudo-science, an explanation that cannot be proven but must be accepted as truth through faith, faith in the infallibility of man’s intellect and reason. Then, anyone who doesn’t accept the false truth must be condemned as ignorant, superstitious, and closed-minded. To deny mankind’s humanistic pseudo-science is the blaspheme the church of self-righteousness and self-glorification. The truth of Christ is unacceptable to the church of man, and the humanist will seek to silence the messenger of Truth, the ambassador of Christ.

Exodus 7:23 – “Pharaoh turned and went into his house, and he did not take even this to heart.”

Pride is a powerful thing. You cannot convince a prideful person, through reason or miracles, to accept Jesus Christ because their heart hasn’t been humbled by the Holy Spirit. However, our job is to proclaim the Gospel to all creation, regardless of the response. You never know what seeds you are planting. Proclaim the truth to all, but don’t argue with the scoffers.

Acts 13:1 – “Now there were in the church at Antioch prophets and teachers, Barnabas, Simeon who was called Niger, Lucius of Cyrene, Manaen a lifelong friend of Herod the tetrarch, and Saul.”

It is truly an amazing thing and quite a testimony when a diverse congregation has true unity in Christ through the power of the Holy Spirit and works together to spread the Gospel to all nations. Consider this unlikely team of leaders God put together for His glory in Antioch. Not only was this group ethnically, racially, and economically diverse, but one of them (Manaen) had grown up as a friend of Herod Antipater who beheaded John the Baptist and conspired against Jesus. And another among this group of church leaders had spent a portion of his life persecuting Christians (Saul). Who would have imagined that God would use the likes of these to spread the Gospel as a team?

Don’t be surprised if God teams you up with an unlikely crew glorify Him and to spread the Gospel in ways you had never planned or imagined. Be ready and faithful with the opportunity. “For consider your calling, brothers: not many of you were wise according to worldly standards, not many were powerful, not many were of noble birth. But God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong; God chose what is low and despised in the world, even things that are not, to bring to nothing things that are, so that no human being might boast in the presence of God. And because of him you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom, righteousness, sanctification and redemption from God so that, as it is written, “Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord.” (1 Corinthians 1:26-31)

“Cross” Fit S-WOD (Spiritual Workout of the Day) – 28 Feb 22: Pray the God will help you see people for who they are to be in Christ rather than who they are right now, who they once were, or how the world might view them. Pray that God will help you eliminate partiality in how you treat others. Ask God to show you with whom He might want you to interact, who you might have been neglecting due to preconceived notions or hidden biases. Glorify God by showing university (unity in diversity) in Christ – “The glory that you have given me I have given to them, that they may be one even as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me.” (John 17:22, 23)

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