KG Aug. 7-13

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August 7, Sunday

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Accepting Guidance — This passage was written for people who live today, because God told Isaiah to write it “for the time to come” (v. 8).  It was also written for us “as a witness forever [about] … rebellious people … unwilling to hear the instruction of the LORD” (vv. 8-9).  In Isaiah’s time, Judah was being threatened by the Assyrians from the north.  Judah’s desire was either to ask Egypt for help or to flee to Egypt for safety.  Since they didn’t want to hear what God had to say (“…you despise this word”—v. 12), God let them know that “In returning [or repentance] and rest you shall be saved” (v. 16), and then He waited (“Therefore the LORD waits to be gracious to you”—v. 18a).  God will allow us to go our own way and suffer the painful consequences.  He will wait for us.  Thankfully, it is also true that “blessed are all those who wait for him” (v. 18b).  Which side of the waiting do you want to be on—the discipline side or the repentance side?  The last paragraph in this passage projects ahead to our time, to the new covenant era when the Holy Spirit dwells within the believer’s heart to guide us along the right path.  He says to us, “This is the way, walk in it” (v. 21).

Lead Me, Guide Me – YouTube

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August 8, Monday

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Conversion — Jerusalem was in great trouble, being attacked by Assyria.  Although money was given to them to leave, they continued to attack (“Covenants are broken”—v. 8).  Judah’s soldiers “cry in the streets” (v. 7) and “The land mourns and languishes” (v. 9).  That seems like a terrible picture of hopelessness, but it is actually a perfect time for God to save.  It is only then that God exclaims, “Now I will arise … now I will lift myself up … now I will be exalted” (v. 10).  God was waiting for the people to come to the realization of their desperate need and to call on Him for help.  Many of us did not come to God and find salvation until we were at the bottom of something like financial failure, a broken relationship, or being controlled by some sinful habit.  Repentance comes before conversion.  It involves recognizing our need and being willing to admit it.  It is only then that “Your eyes will behold the king in his beauty” (v. 17).  That is when we are converted, becoming a new person, spiritually.  One’s attitude changes toward sin so that he/she “walks righteously and speaks uprightly” (v. 15a), and is disgusted with things like oppression, bribes, bloodshed, and evil (v. 15b).  God has become our Savior: “…there the LORD in majesty will be for us” (v. 21).  He becomes “our judge … our lawgiver … our king … [and] he will save us” (v. 22).

Our God Saves – YouTube

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August 9, Tuesday

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Saved for Glory — I love this piece of Israel’s history.  It shows King Hezekiah’s great faith in God during a deadly threat to Jerusalem’s survival.  After he received a threatening letter from the Assyrian forces surrounding the city, he “spread it before the LORD” in the temple (v. 14).  It was a symbolic gesture of complete dependence on God.  He knew that Yahweh was the “God of Israel … you alone … you who have made heaven and earth” (v. 16)—the Covenant God and the Creator God.  Hezekiah’s prayer request was one simple sentence, composed of two parts.  First, he asked for God to “save us from his hand” (v. 20a).  That was a prayer for rescue.  The second part expressed a purpose for his request: “…that all the kingdoms of the earth may know that you alone are the LORD” (v. 20b).  It was also an evangelistic prayer—Hezekiah wanted to broadcast the greatness and reality of the only true God.  He wanted God to receive the glory.  God answered Hezekiah’s prayer in a dramatic way with “the angel of the LORD” wiping out the Assyrian army, killing 185,000 soldiers during the night (cf. v. 36).  Now, that would get the attention of other nations!  God has saved us, too, from the destructive terror of Satan’s army.  People around us can see that we are different.  We need to tell them why.  Let God receive the glory!

Thank You, Lord, for Saving My Soul – YouTube

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August 10, Wednesday

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Paralyzing Fear and Worshiping Fear — It is very tempting to believe that this psalm was written about Hezekiah’s encounter with the Assyrian army that we read about yesterday.  Since “the angel of the LORD” mysteriously struck down 185,000 soldiers during the night (Isa. 37:36), our psalm for today seems to hint at that, saying that “they sank into sleep … both rider and horse lay stunned” (Ps. 76:5-6).  Another connection to that dramatic rescue is that King Hezekiah prayed that the result of the victory would cause other nations to “know that you alone are the LORD” (Isa. 37:20).  In today’s psalm, four times in verses 7-12, it says that the result of divine judgment is that God is “to be feared.”  It is a paralyzing fear for the oppressors because God “cuts off the spirit of princes … [and] is to be feared by the kings” (Ps. 76:12).  On the other hand, it was a worshiping fear for those who had been rescued; they were to make vows to God, perform them, and “bring gifts to him who is to be feared” (v. 11).  The only negative fear we believers should have toward God is His discipline for our straying and persisting in sin.  Our primary fear toward Him should be one of gratitude for who He is and what He has done for us.

Come, Ye Thankful People, Come – YouTube

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August 11, Thursday

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Mighty God — We could have spent a whole week on the attributes and activities of God contained in the stanzas of this chapter!  His tender and comforting forgiveness is the theme of verses 1-2.  We rejoice in that today.  The still-future revelation of His glory is in verses 3-5.  We look forward to that.  The unchanging, everlasting nature of His word (vv. 6-8) assures us that we can always trust it.  God’s great strength, combined with His gentleness (vv. 9-11), gives us comfort, peace, and encouragement.  There is the vastness of His creative ability and understanding in verses 12-17 that fills us with wonder.  The laughable comparison of our living God with a crafted idol (vv. 18-20) makes us grateful that we have a personal relationship with Yahweh.  As King of Creation, He rules over all (vv. 21-24).  Since He is sovereign, we submit to His wisdom and authority.  Another comparison of God is to His creation (vv. 25-26), which reminds us that He is infinite.  The final stanza summarizes these many attributes and activities of God: He is eternal, creator, enduring, understanding, and He strengthens us—part of His creation (vv. 27-31).  Wow, what a mighty God!

What a Mighty God We Serve – YouTube

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August 12, Friday

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He Did It! — We see the sovereignty of God in this passage.  He controls history, even the ruthless march of rulers (“from the east”—v. 2), who conquered many other nations.  After summarizing that king’s victorious exploits (vv. 2-3), God asked, “Who has performed and done this…?”, and then answered, “I, the LORD … I am he” (v. 4).  God did it!  He was behind it all.  Then, at the end of this passage, God made a very similar statement: “…the hand of the LORD has done this” (v. 20).  Done what?  This time, He was not speaking of conquering nations, but of rescuing and caring for His own people.  Twice He told them, “Fear not … I am the one who helps you” (vv. 13, 14).  From Abraham and Jacob, God chose and called out a people to be His own (v. 8-9), and He gave them this great assurance: “…fear not, for I am with you … I will strengthen … help you … uphold you” (v. 10).  After the death and resurrection of Christ, God chose and called out both Jews and Gentiles to form His Church, the Body of Christ.  We are a part of His people!  He moves history for us and He rescues and cares for us.  He does it!  He is our Sovereign, our Master.

Ye Servants of God – YouTube

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August 13, Saturday

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Behold My Servant! — God gave Isaiah a message that looked forward to the coming Messiah.  The Lord said that this Anointed One would be “my servant … my chosen … [and having] my Spirit” (v. 1).  His mission would be to “bring forth justice” internationally (vv. 1b, 3-4).  Jesus began to fulfill that during His ministry and then continued through the Church, following His resurrection.  He has been bringing people into alignment with God’s moral law.  All four of the pronouns “you” in verse 6 are singular, referring to this expected Servant who would be “a light for the nations.”  Jesus confirmed that when He claimed, “I am the light of the world” (John 8:12).  We are to behold this Servant today as well.  We are to, “Sing to the LORD a new song, his praise from the end of the earth … [and] give glory to the LORD” (Isa. 42:10).  Sing praises to the Giver and to the Gift!

I Sing Praises to Your Name – YouTube

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This website honors the Bible as the inspired Word of God through which God speaks to us as we read and study it.

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