Tired of the Game (Isaiah 1-4)

Stop bringing meaningless offerings!  Your incense is detestable to me.  New Moons, Sabbaths and convocations— I cannot bear your worthless assemblies. (Isaiah 1:13) Solomon's wasn't kidding when he said, "there's nothing new under the sun."  He was especially right as it comes to the whole game of religion.  In fact, the temptation to make religion a game is just as ... [Continue Reading]

Gracious Provisions (Jonah)

Now the Lord provided a huge fish to swallow Jonah, and Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights. (Jonah 1:17) There is a perspective about God that once you make a mistake, He writes you off for good.  From my perspective, this is one of the most incorrect views about God that floats around because nothing could be further from the truth.  The story ... [Continue Reading]

A Fresh Start (1 Kings 9; 2 Chronicles 8)

The Lord said to [Solomon]: “I have heard the prayer and plea you have made before me; I have consecrated this temple, which you have built, by putting my Name there forever.  My eyes and my heart will always be there.” (1 Kings 9:3) Sometimes it's important to get a fresh start in life.  The finishing of the Temple and the kingship of Solomon was a time for a fresh start ... [Continue Reading]

Perfect People Need Not Apply (1 Kings 8; 2 Chronicles 5)

“When they sin against you—for there is no one who does not sin—and you become angry with them and give them over to their enemies, who take them captive to their own lands, far away or near... then from heaven, your dwelling place, hear their prayer and their plea, and uphold their cause.” (1 Kings 8:46, 49) There is a misnomer in our culture that Christians need to be ... [Continue Reading]

Finding the Truth (2 Samuel 16-18)

Then Abishai son of Zeruiah said to the king, “Why should this dead dog curse my lord the king?  Let me go over and cut off his head.” (2 Samuel 16:9) When David was confronted by the curses of Shimei he had a couple of choices.  One option was to have his mighty warriors destroy Shimei right there on the spot.  Another option was to listen to Shimei's words and to take ... [Continue Reading]

The “God Game” (1 Samuel 15-17)

“Does the Lord delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as much as in obeying the Lord?  To obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed is better than the fat of rams.” (1 Samuel 15:22) It's tempting to play games with God as if we have Him all figured out.  The game goes like this: God, I know you'll forgive me if I ask you to, so I'm going to do what I want now and then ... [Continue Reading]

What Will it Take? (Judges 3-4)

Because [Jabin, the king of Canaan,] had nine hundred chariots fitted with iron and had cruelly oppressed the Israelites for twenty years, they cried to the Lord for help. (Judges 4:3) Twenty years of oppression is what it took for Israel to turn back to God?  Seriously?  Twenty years? It's remarkable to me that it took so long for the nation to realize that it was ... [Continue Reading]

Unique Prayers (Numbers 12-14)

So Moses cried out to the Lord, “Please, God, heal her!” (Numbers 12:13) At first glance, there's nothing unique about Moses' prayer for his sister.  Most people pray for God to heal a loved one at some point in time - even those who profess no faith in anything other than themselves. What makes Moses' prayer unique is the situation leading up to it.  Faced by all ... [Continue Reading]

Remember Your Journey (Leviticus 16, 19)

‘When a foreigner resides among you in your land, do not mistreat them.  The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born. Love them as yourself, for you were foreigners in Egypt. I am the Lord your God.' (Leviticus 19:33-34) In giving the Israelites instructions on how to live, the Lord felt it was important for them to remember their humble ... [Continue Reading]

Look Out For The Donkeys (Exodus 23-24)

If you see the donkey of someone who hates you fallen down under its load, do not leave it there; be sure you help them with it. (Exodus 23:5) I haven't seen too many donkeys collapsing under the weight of a heavy load, but the picture is certainly an interesting one.  I can't imagine leaving such a donkey by the side of the road even if it did belong to my enemy.  But ... [Continue Reading]