OYB October 11

Filed in ReligionTags: Christianity, Devotions, One Year Bible

Posted 17 October 2006, back-dated.

Today´s reading:
OT: Jeremiah 16:16-21, Jeremiah 17-18
NT: I Thessalonians 4, I Thessalonians 5:1-3
Ps: Psalm 81
Pr: Proverbs 25:6-8

Today´s notable verses:

7 "But blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD, whose confidence is in him. 8 He will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit." 9 The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it? 10 "I the LORD search the heart and examine the mind, to reward a man according to his conduct, according to what his deeds deserve."

Jeremiah 17:7-10 (NIV)

A few things of note here. The first two verses are reminiscent of Psalm 1:1-4.

Verse 9 demonstrates the depraved state of man without Christ. Many people believe that human nature is inherently good, yet we see here clearly that, apart from God, human nature deceitful above all things and beyond cure. There is no good in man apart from God - yet God provides hope to we who are hopeless.

Finally, the apparent juxtaposition in verse 10, between heart/mind and conduct/deeds merits some interest. On the surface, it would be easy to overlook the apparent disparity in this verse - that God would search the heart and examine the mind, in order to judge according to conduct and deeds. The heart and mind represent intent, will, and thought - all internal matters; conduct and deeds represent outward action. Yet, God equates the two here. This verse could be taken two ways, both plausible: one, that the inward thoughts, will, and intent of our heart and mind dictate our outward conduct and deeds; two, that God considers our inward thoughts, will, and intent equal to our conduct and deeds.

11 Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business and to work with your hands, just as we told you, 12 so that your daily life may win the respect of outsiders and so that you will not be dependent on anybody.

I Thessalonians 4:11-12 (NIV)

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