Reading #1 – Mark 9
Reading #2 – Psalms 61
Reading #3 – Proverbs 20
Reading #4 – Isaiah 39
Reading #5 – 1 Chronicle 16
1 Chronicle 16 – The “Ark of the Covenant” Placed in the Tent. David had prepared a place for the Ark before it was moved from Obed-Edom. David went to great lengths to fulfill all that was written in the law concerning the “Ark of the Covenant”. In Gibeon, an altar was set up for worshiping the Lord following the law set down by Moses. By doing these things, David was honoring G_d’s commandments and this brought joy to the land and set the stage for the next 35 years. Before sending the people home, he gave everybody a loaf of bread, a cake of raisins, and a cake of dates (3). This parallels what Jesus did when he fed the people.
Psalms 61 – A Prayer of Protection. from the ends of the earth, I cry to you for help when my heart is overwhelmed. Lead me to the towering rock of safety, for you are my safe refuge, a fortress where my enemies cannot reach me. Let me live forever in your sanctuary, safe beneath the shelter of your wings! In the Lord, we can find comfort, solace, and renewing strength to face every storm that confronts us. Until we breathe our final breath, we will live in this world. This world is filled with trouble which, brings catastrophe. We are not immune to trouble but whose ground we are standing on, will determine how well succeed or fail. G_d hears our vows and expects us to honor them. Troublesome times cause people to tremble and so they vow “I will _____ if you will ____” parallel Jebtha’s promise to sacrifice the first thing that comes out the door to find out that it was the daughter that came out the door singing praise (Judges 11:31). I shall come into Your house with burnt offerings; I shall pay You my vows, Which my lips uttered And my mouth spoke as a promise when I was in distress (Psalms 66:14).
Proverbs 20 – Pearls For Life in an UnG_dly World. The world provides plenty of examples of what happens when foolishness is allowed to reign. In the streets just like it is behind closed doors, fools do foolish things. After the cyclones of trouble sweep over the fools’ land, we see the result. Regretfully, we will not always be able to differentiate the seed of the fool from the seed of the wise. When it comes to alcohol abuse, the fruit becomes apparent just like it does when “The king’s fury is like a lion’s roar; to rouse his anger is to risk your life (2).” When it comes to avoiding a fight it is a mark of honor but allowing wickedness to reign and do nothing about it, the individual becomes complicit in the trouble (3). The writer compels his students to look beyond the surface to see the benefit of good advice (5). Who can say, “I have cleansed my heart; I am pure and free from sin”? False weights and unequal measures— the LORD detests double standards of every kind (9-10).
Isaiah 39 – Envoys from Babylon. After Hezekiah was healed from his illness, envoys from Babylon came to express their best wishes. While this would appear to be noble, it is like the Trojan Horse that was sent as a gift to the nation of Troy. The Greeks sent the Trojan Horse as a subterfuge to defeat Troy. In the same way, the envoys came to spy out the land to see what was in the storehouse. Hezekiah showed them everything in his kingdom (2). Isaiah’s message sounded like there would be peace and security in his life like it was in David’s (8). Then Isaiah said to Hezekiah, “Listen to this message from the LORD of Heaven’s Armies: ‘The time is coming when everything in your palace—all the treasures stored up by your ancestors until now—will be carried off to Babylon. Nothing will be left,’ says the LORD. ‘Some of your very own sons will be taken away into exile. They will become eunuchs who will serve in the palace of Babylon’s king (5-7).’”
Mark 9 – The Transfiguration. Six days after Peter’s confession, Jesus took Peter, James, and John up on the mountain where he was transfigured before their eyes. Jesus’ clothing became as white as snow and Moses and Elijah appeared and were talking with Jesus about his appointment with the cross (2-3). We are not told what Moses and Elijah had to say. Theologians say the reason for them appearing is that Moses represented the “law” and Elijah “the prophets”. I tend to believe the purpose of their conversation was to encourage Jesus and help him finish strong were Moses and Elijah had failed. While I have no proof of my conviction, when I look back on these men’s lives, I see where they failed at a time when they should have come through with flying colors. Moses missed out on the opportunity to go into Canaan land because he did not honor G_d by complying with what he was told to do (Numbers 20:10-13). Elijah refused to believe any notion other than “he was the last of the line” even though Obadiah had told him what he had done (1 Kings 19). While we are not told what was said between Moses, Elijah, and Jesus, probably because it was not important, we are told what our part is, Then a cloud overshadowed them, and a voice from the cloud said, “This is my dearly loved Son. Listen to him (7).” If we want to live our life to please Jesus, we are to listen to what he commands and not build altars or temples to honor him.