A daily, Bible-based perspective of hope, encouragement and exhortation.
Thursday, July 16, 2020
Each morning these Amish boys ride by our place on the way to work at a neighbor's farm.
Click on photo to enlarge
"Wasting Grace Capital"
Message summary: The Bible and history abundantly teach that one day grace capital will be spent and judgment will come. Notice the phrase in our daily text, "until there was no remedy." This is especially applicable to nations. Even as there is often a time lapse between the promise and the blessing, there is also a time lapse between the disobedient nation and judgment that follows.
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"The Lord, the God of their fathers, sent word to them again and again by His messengers, because He had compassion on His people and on His dwelling place; but they continually mocked the messengers of God, despised His words and scoffed at His prophets, until the wrath of the Lord arose against His people, until there was no remedy" (2 Chronicles 36:15,16).
When we lived in New England in the nineties we enjoyed biking along "The Shining Sea" bike path on Cape Cod. It began in Woods Hole and ran along the coast to Falmouth. It was named for the line in America the Beautiful, "From sea to shining sea!" There is a small plaque along the trail commemorating the poem by Katherine Lee Bates who was from Falmouth where her house still stands.
"America the Beautiful" is one of our nation's great inspirational and patriotic songs. Today let us consider the line, "God shed His grace on thee", which we affirm with a heartfelt "Amen". But we wonder how many hear these moving words and stop to consider how God has indeed shed His grace on America? Sadly, many of these types of songs are not heard as much, at least in our observation.
Indeed, God has shed His grace on America. For readers from other countries we affirm that this is not exclusive to our nation. God has and will pour forth His grace wherever people call upon His name, believe in His saving power and follow His ways.
A study of our forefathers indicates that many (but certainly not all) held a deep faith in Christ. So many of the ordinary people also sought to walk in obedience to God. Churches were strong, with people of godly conviction.
Frenchman Alexis de Tocqueville who wrote "Democracy in America" made this observation early in our nation's early history (see here),
“I sought for the greatness and genius of America in her commodious harbors and her ample rivers – and it was not there . . . in her fertile fields and boundless forests and it was not there . . . in her rich mines and her vast world commerce – and it was not there . . . in her democratic Congress and her matchless Constitution – and it was not there. Not until I went into the churches of America and heard her pulpits aflame with righteousness did I understand the secret of her genius and power. America is great because she is good, and if America ever ceases to be good, she will cease to be great.”
These previous generations left something we will call "grace capital". That is, the residual effects of grace extended to previous generations who had served God faithfully that benefit subsequent generations.
Yet we earnestly believe that America is rapidly running out of this "grace capital".
Notice carefully here, we are not suggesting there is any deficiency or limit to God's grace. Not at all. But we do believe those walking in disobedience to God may very well experience "grace capital" that is residual from previous generations. And this applies to nations as well.
The Bible and history abundantly teach that one day this grace capital will be spent and judgment will come. Today's text describes the final days of the southern kingdom at the time of the impending Babylonian conquest and captivity: "The Lord, the God of their fathers, sent word to them again and again by His messengers, because He had compassion on His people and on His dwelling place; but they continually mocked the messengers of God, despised His words and scoffed at His prophets, until the wrath of the Lord arose against His people until there was no remedy." Can you see the parallel?
Notice the last phrase, "until there was no remedy". This is especially applicable to nations. Even as there is often a time lapse between the promise and the blessing, there is also a time lapse between the disobedience and judgment that follows.
The daily verse may sound very harsh in our age of moral relativism and the pluralistic society in which we now live, but it expresses a profound truth and can be applied to both individuals and nations. Have you received the knowledge of the truth? Are you living your life with faith and obedience to God?
Be encouraged today,
Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
Daily prayer: Father, it is not Your will that any should perish but that all would come to repentance. Yet You don't force us to follow Your prescribed plan, but give us a free will to come willingly, lovingly, obediently, and gratefully when we finally realize that there is none like You. No one else could touch our hearts like You do, grant us peace that is eternal and prepare a home for us to last for all eternity. We don't presume upon Your grace, but we do receive it by faith with thanksgiving. In Jesus' name we pray. Amen.
Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources
"America the Beautiful" Video Gaither Vocal Band
"To The Table" Video Zach Williams (sung in a prison)
"For amber waves of grain" (well actually this is corn!)
Brooksyne takes an early evening walk with Mollie and Sadie nightly and is always appreciative of the agricultural landscape right here on our own road.
Click on photo to enlarge
When we think of grain fields, whether wheat or rye, we warmly remember our dog, Roxie, who loved to jump in the fields when she was young. Roxie enjoyed leaping through the wheat fields and soybean fields. It's really an amazing sight to see her jump through the field with practically vertical hops. When she's not leaping (as in the photo where she's about 18 inches off the ground) we only spot the curly point of her tail above the wheat. (watch the video 30 seconds) This past April, we said good-bye to our wonderful dog of 15 1/2 years. We miss her everyday as she was a very loving and extremely loyal pet. Sadie used to jump in the dog bed with her and lick her face - Roxie never seemed to mind, acted like a canine grandmother to the young pup.
Sadie also enjoyed running through the wheat fields in our neighborhood before they were harvested but shows no interest in running in the leftover stubble!
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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version.
Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."
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