The goal of the Christian life is to make it to the end of the age without turning from the Lord. How can we do this, and what assurance do we have that our Sabbath rest is worthwhile?
The Lord has called us to honor Him and to live a life exclusively for our God. Christ makes this life a challenge when Christ is very explicit that the law is something that cuts to the heart rather than just being an outward superficial conforming. It is impossible for us to conform to the Lord from our heart, and so how do we conform to the Lord? How do we come before the Lord in light of such impossible exhortations?
Hopefully Samson has learned that his desires and his departing from his nazarite vow has not brought him the relief that he wanted. In fact, his trying to be an ordinary man has not made his life easier, but more difficult. Will Samson fulfill his mission? Will Samson be able to rise up and fulfill his mandate?
Job has made a passionate speech about someone taking his case to the heavenly courts. He is done with the counselors for they are not taking his case seriously. Bildad has heard these words and he responds to Job. Will this man, who is most likely a grandson of Abraham, respond with the promises of the Gospel? Will they come together and realize that maybe the Lord’s purpose is bigger than their understanding?
Job has tried to reason with the men who have come to encourage him. However, in Job’s mind he is not gaining any traction. The counselors are still convinced that Job has unconfessed sin or a specific sin that warrants God’s punishment. The irony is that Job and the counselors are not in complete disagreement, but Job has been trying to tell the counselors that there is something wrong with the world as they know it. What is Job going to say to the Lord? What is the basis of Job’s trial?
There are times when it is easy for us as New Testament saints to see ourselves in a different place from the Old Testament saints. In other words their struggle was their struggle and we have a completely different sort of struggle. Is this a mindset that is consistent with Scripture? How are we exhorted in Hebrews as a people called to honor the Lord? What are we to learn from the Old Testament saints?
This is the first part of our consideration of Jacob blessing his grandsons. The family of God has not performed so well in terms of morality. There are a lot of discrepancies within this family in terms of their calling before the Lord. The rivalry between Cain and Abel is repeated, there is outright immorality, the Lord strikes dead some of the covenant children because of their wickedness, and Jacob fails to consistently lead the family in a Godly direction. What do we do with this? What are God’s people beginning to realize about the Lord’s Sabbath?
The reality is that we desire to make the Lord’s standard something that will comply to our standard. It is not an easy thing to realize that we are a sinful people in need of the Lord’s redemption. His redemption has to cleanse us from the core of our being so that we see the fruit of His power. So, how are these fruits manifested? What figures in covenant history have demonstrated a life ordered by the principles of the Lord?
It is a good thing to desire the Lord’s sanctifictifying power. We should want such a thing if we take hold of Christ by faith. It is honorable, but do we think about what we are asking? We are people who are stained with sin. We are people who honor strength and not suffering. How does the Lord conform us to Him? Do we always enjoy this conforming power of the Lord? When is the Lord working us the most when it seems he has abandoned us?