Notes from my Bible Study for May 4, 2010

Today’s Reading: Psalm 123, Numbers 3-4, Isaiah 40, Philippians 1:1-26

Psalm 123 – 2 Behold, as the eyes of servants look to the hand of their master, as the eyes of a maidservant to the hand of her mistress, so our eyes look to the Lord our God, till he has mercy upon us.

Is this how you look at God? It really is a beautiful picture of our relationship with Christ. He is our master. We are dependent upon Him. God expects His children to living in confident expectation of Him. He loves to work on behalf of His people, for His glory.

Numbers 3-4 – Numbers 3-4 records the census that was taken during the time of that Moses was on Mount Sinai. The children of Israel took great care to make sure that the people were counted. One of the great things about biblical genealogies is that they create a verifiable historical record of the people who were present on the earth at the time of significant historical periods.

Isaiah 40 – 31 but l they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings m like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.

Isaiah 40:31 is one of my favorite verses in all of Scripture. I can’t tell you how many works of art that I have seen in my lifetime that have these words etched on a piece of canvas or clay. There is something so comforting about these words.

When I was a young youth pastor living in Washington D.C., I was invited along with our Senior Pastor to have lunch in the Senate Dining Room. Richard Halverson, the Chaplain of the Senate was our host. Many pastors were invited to lunch that day, including an inner-city pastor friend of Halverson’s. Dr. Halverson asked his old friend to share with the rest of us his interpretation of Isaiah 40:31.

He said, “Oh, my brothers. Let me tell you. The Lord is so good! He is worth serving with all of our hearts. Brothers, we need to serve God like these waiters are serving us. I’m sick and tired of Christians sitting on their rear ends waiting for God to bless them. Friends, we will have our strength when we spend it on the Lord. They that wait, they that serve the Lord tirelessly, they are gonna have their strength renewed. They will rise up with wings as eagles. They will run and not faint! Brothers, we’ve gotta spend our lives serving the Lord.”

Now, I’m pretty sure that my brother in Christ had the interpretation of the Hebrew word “wait” a little wrong. I believe that we are to wait on God and on God’s timing. But, I liked what my brother said too. We need to spend our lives serving the Lord. There is no endeavor that is greater. Serve the Lord, and watch what He does.

Philippians 1:1-26 – 3 I thank my God in all my remembrance of you, 4 always in every prayer of mine for you all making my prayer with joy, 5 because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now. 6 And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.

Paul loved the church at Philippi. These spiritual children of his were precious in his sight. He wanted to see them experience the joy that comes from being a follower of Jesus. I’m amazed, every time I read this letter, that Paul was chained between two prison guards when he wrote it. This is a man who had such joy in Christ that even in the worst of circumstance he could rejoice.

Verses 3-6 are encouraging verses to me in my Christian life. They remind me that God is at work in my life. I’m glad that God has begun a new work in me. I want my life to bring glory to Him.

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