OYB November 17

Filed in ReligionTags: Christianity, Devotions, One Year Bible

Posted December 16, 2006; back-dated.

Today´s reading:
OT: Ezekiel 35-36
NT: James 1:1-17
Ps: Psalm 116
Pr: Proverbs 27:23-27

Today´s notable verses:

I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh.

Ezekiel 36:26 (NIV)

Paul references this circumcision of the heart - which the Jewish physical circumcision symbolizes - in Romans 2:28-29. It is not the physical circumcision in which God is ultimately interested, but in the circumcision of the heart: the removing of the heart of stone to be replaced with a heart of flesh, a heart submitted to God.

If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.

James 1:5 (NIV)

Aren't we glad that we serve a God who so desires that we live the life He intends for us that He is willing personally to endue within us His wisdom - and that He does so generously and without finding fault in the one who humbles himself enough to ask God for that wisdom!

Be sure you know the condition of your flocks, give careful attention to your herds;

Proverbs 27:23 (NIV)

Part of responsible stewardship of that with which God has entrusted us is knowing the condition of that trust. Take care of physical possessions, keep track of investments, and practice preventive maintenance to ensure the health and viability of everything with which we have been entrusted. That said, we are not called to obsess over our stewardships. Practice due diligence, but do not become consumed with anything other than serving, worshiping, and glorifying God, who is ultimately responsible for everything.

The One Year Bible Blog´s comments for today.

(p.s. Mike: I disagree that today's Proverbs verses are merely "agricultural advice". Flocks and herds represented one of the primary means of accumulating and passing on wealth to one's heirs. They were one of the primary economic vehicles, serving as tender for barter exchanges. They were also a primary source of milk, food, and clothing. To "look after" one's flocks and herds then is directly analogous today to one caring for investments and possessions one would desire to pass on to one's heirs. Much wisdom in these "agricultural" verses apply to us today, even in our non-agrarian societies.