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bible reading oct 27



Bible reading for October 27. 

2 Kings 8.

"Yet the LORD was not willing to destroy Judah, for the sake of David his servant, since he promised to give a lamp to him and to his sons forever." (2 Kings 8:19) 

GOD'S TIMING AND PURPOSE. The Shunammite woman left her land for a season, but returns and receives her property back in a remarkable, providential timing (vv 1-6). Then the sad story of Elisha, Ben-Hadad, and Hazael (vv 7-15).  Jehoram becomes a wicked ruler over Judah, much like the kings of Israel. Edom rebels against Judah and Jehoram dies after an eight-year reign. Ahaziah becomes king in Judah (the south), ruling only one year. And Joram (the north) gets injured in battle with Syria. For all their alliances and military power, the two nations, Judah and Israel, are not faring well. We catch a glimpse of God's purpose in preserving Judah: it is for the sake of King David, to give a lamp to his lineage until the Light of the world would come. This Lamp, of course, is Jesus, the son of David and the eternal Son of God (Isa 9:2; 49:6; John 8:12; 9:5; Rev 21:23). 

REFLECT. Through all the twists and turns of human history, we learn that God's purpose is not to bless all nations indiscriminately. His purpose is to bring his Son into the world (Acts 17:26-31) that people might turn and believe in him. History is the unfolding of God's plan and purposes, not ours. What is the purpose of history then? In the Bible, in creation, and in history, God is revealing his goodness and glory, that we might know him, trust him, and love him with all of our hearts. He is making a new humanity through his beloved Son and by the Spirit of glory, that we might thereby enter a new creation where we will enjoy God fully and love one another forever. This is the big picture of world history. The history of nations is only a small piece of that. 

ELECTION SIDEBAR: In thinking about nations, and about political twists and turns, here's "5 Easy Steps for Christians Voting in This National Election":

1) Be informed about the candidates -- not just the presidential but also the vice-presidential candidates, one of whom may in time be future president. 

2) Be informed about the platform and policies of the various parties and decide which best aligns with biblical righteousness and with your Christian values. 

3) Proceed to vote according to your conscience. 

4) Be at peace. You do not have to tell family, friends, and co-workers whom you voted for. Hint: this is the reason for secret ballots in a democracy and a primary way to end conflict and bullying in the election process.

5) Leave the results with the Lord, knowing that history is the unfolding of God's plan and purposes, not ours (see under "REFLECT" above).    

===============  

1 Timothy 5.

"She who is truly a widow, left all alone, has set her hope on God and continues in supplications and prayers night and day..." (1 Timothy 5:5) 

CARE FOR WIDOWS. Paul instructs Timothy on the care of widows in the churches (vv 3-16). As seen in Acts 6, widows in that time were most vulnerable, especially if they had no family to care for them. Paul then writes of the support and accountability of elders (vv 17-25). In speaking of elders receiving financial support, Paul begins with "the Scripture says" (v 18), and then quotes the OT (Deut 25:4) and the words of Jesus (Luke 10:7). This shows that Paul gave equal authority to the OT law and the NT gospels. 

REFLECT. How does your local church provide help for vulnerable people, like widows, orphans, and the poor? What could you do to help your church meet such needs?


We are following the Robert Murray M'Cheyne (RMM) two-year reading schedule, as arranged by D. A. Carson. Scripture quotations, unless otherwise noted, are from The ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved. One recommended resource is NETBible.org, a ministry of bible.org.


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