My pastor told a personal story during his sermon last Sunday. Pastor was fishing and tossed his coffee dregs over the side of the boat into the lake. He watched as the coffee instantly disappeared into the waters of the lake and described the Holy Spirit as telling him,
“That coffee is your sin and this lake is My grace.”
The sermon topic was about the people of Nineveh and how the greatness of their sins had reached God in Heaven (Book of Jonah); yet God loved them in spite of their sin. God sent His servant, Jonah, to preach repentance to the people of Nineveh. The people did repent so God forgave them.
I hope that sharing my pastor’s personal testimony about the sufficiency of God’s grace encourages repentance in someone out there today. God loves us, and His mercy is so wondrously kind – He forgives “seventy times seven“.
“And the grace of our Master was exceeding abundant with faith and love which is in Messiah Yahshua.” ~ I Timothy 1:14 RSV
“The words of the LORD are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times.” ~ Psalm 12:6 KJV
Purity is absolute: Pureness means flawless and undefiled. God’s words are Truth. They can be tested for eternity and never change. God wants us to know that we can rely on His words. God’s words stand up to any test. God’s words are a testament to who He is. That is clearly understood by man, as throughout history, even an imperfect man is known by whether or not he keeps his word:
“For I am the LORD, I change not: ….” ~ Malachi 3:6 KJV
Properties of silver: The more times heat is applied to silver, the more pure it becomes. This is true of any metal such as gold. Why does King David describe the words of God as being pure “as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times” instead of gold? Well, not all silver is pure silver unless the impurities are removed by the process of smelting. The heat of a furnace (or crucible) extracts silver or gold from the slag (bronze, iron, lead, or tin), leaving the desired metal in its pure state – undefiled. Only silver that is refined in a furnace of earth (in those days) seven times is pure enough to describe God’s words.
The number seven: In God’s Word the number seven is known to be symbolic of completion; i.e. the priest sprinkled the blood of a bull before the Lord seven times at the veil of the sanctuary in the tabernacle (Leviticus 4:6); the leper was to be sprinkled seven times for cleansing from leprosy (Leviticus 14:7); the Israelites marched around the city walls of Jericho seven times before the Lord caused the walls to fall, giving His people a complete victory over the Canaanite city (Joshua 6:4) – it was the first battle victory of many to follow that enabled God’s chosen people to inhabit the land that God had promised to them. God’s words are complete. They are final and unchangeable.
Value of silver: We understand that gold is more valuable than silver even today – just as it was in the ancient world. So why not describe God’s words as being pure as gold instead of pure as silver?
Durability: Who was David’s audience? A people whose economy was based upon silver currency would understand the high value placed upon silver as a traded commodity and also its availability to the common people in everyday life. God inspired David around 800 B.C.E to describe His messages to man in common terms that man could understand across the millennia of time. Even today silver is more commonly minted as coinage than is gold, so the average person is more familiar with its monetary value than gold.
Most coinage is silver, since gold is softer than silver. Gold is good for beating into stunning and valuable temple ornamentation or jewelry, but its soft properties do not meet the standards of coinage. It is so awesome that God’s Word never fails to explain His messages to man in terms that man can best understand. God’s message here is to the ancient generations of Hebrews living during King David’s rule of Israel. Yet it is also easily understood in modern times.
Silver as a symbol: Silver symbolizes wealth and position. Palaces, temples, kingly furnishings and other royal objects of wealth have been adorned or traded in silver. One example given at the link below of traded silver is that of Solomon’s Egyptian chariot bought with 600 shekels of silver (I Kings 10:29).
The smelting or refining of silver as well as the trading of silver assigned a symbolic value to the virtue of wisdom for the Israelites:
“For You, God, tested us; You refined us like silver.” ~ Psalm 66:10 NIV
“Blessed are those who find wisdom, those who gain understanding, for she is more profitable than silver and yields better returns than gold.” ~ Proverbs 3:13-14 NIV
God’s Promise and our hope:
“So that by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have taken refuge would have strong encouragement to take hold of the hope set before us. This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, a hope both sure and steadfast and one which enters within the veil, where Jesus has entered as a forerunner for us, having become a high priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek” ~ Hebrews 6:18-20 NASB
Prayer: Abba, Father, thanking You today for drawing us a picture using silver to explain how Your words are pure, absolute, complete, lasting, valuable, and worthy of our attention. We accept Your words as holy and full of wisdom. Help us to remain faithful to read Your Word, the Holy Bible, daily; and keep Your words in our hearts. Give us opportunities to share them with others, and to apply Your words to our lives. In the Name of our our Redeemer Jesus, King of Kings and LORD of Lords, Yeshua Messiah. Amen.
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to His abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope, by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. ~ I Peter 1:3 KJV
The more we praise Abba, our Father, the more we embrace the “lively hope” of our inheritance in heaven, through the resurrection of our Savior, Jesus Christ. Our praise opens the pathway for love to invade our spirits, and renews our faith.
It is only by the power of God that we are kept strong in faith until the great revealing and salvation of our souls at the second coming of Yeshua Messiah.
Prayer: Mighty are your wondrous works on our behalf, Father, and Your Name is greatly to be praised. You are YHVH, my Elohim. Not just someone else’s god; but I declare to heaven and earth forever that You are MY GOD! Thank you for Your mercy and love for all; for sending your Son Jesus to die in our place and that our sin debt is paid in full. In the matchless name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus; PRAISE! PRAISE!! PRAISE!!! Amen.
If you have not yet received God’s gift of redemption and promise of eternal life through believing in Jesus, the important stuff you need to know is found in God’s Word. He wrote you a love letter to explain what you need to do to escape eternal judgement and it is found in The Bible. Another helpful salvation guide with more links is found at our home page..
I was pushed back and about to fall, but the Lord helped me. The Lord is my strength and my defense; He has become my salvation. ~ Psalm 118:13-14 NIV
Even if we think that God has never done anything for us, His Name is worthy to be praised!
Sometimes in the midst of life’s defeats, people may curse God; blaming Him for calamity. When I passed this historical home in Old Town, Kenai, I had to stop and reflect: Who lived here so long ago? Who cut the trees, and hewed the timbers? Most likely the neighbors helped out, since that was still the culture when I arrived in Alaska over half a century ago – and this house is much, much older than that.
How did they survive the harsh climate? There were no modern appliances or conveniences to ease their daily burdens. Did they attend the old Russian Orthodox Church around the corner? Were they people of faith? Old Town is situated on the bluff overlooking Cook Inlet. It is an old fishing town. Was God their strength when loved ones perished at sea; or when the hunt for moose produced no meat for the winter? How many families lived there before it had to be abandoned to the wind and snow? It most certainly rode out the great Alaskan earthquake of 1964 also. But finally, it succumbed, and is now teetering on the brink of collapse.
I am thankful to the Father of all, that He sent His Son, Jesus, who is the cornerstone and will never be shaken. He is my Rock of Salvation.
The stone the builders rejected has become the cornerstone; the Lord has done this, and it is marvelous in our eyes. The Lord has done it this very day; let us rejoice today and be glad. Lord save us! Lord grant us success! ~ Psalm 118:22-25 NIV
I sat there a long time, reflecting upon my own life’s defeats. There have been too many to count. Through it all, the Lord has been with me. He picks me up, and sets me upright with my feet pointed in the direction I should have been headed – always drawing me nearer to Himself – to safety. He does not want us to fall.
I still stray into circumstances that test my abilities to cope. At times I feel that I am reaching the tipping point and only then remember to call upon Jesus to save me!
“What are you doing here?” He lovingly inquires. He does not accuse me in my desperate state of exhaustion over fighting some battle on my own – in futility, without Him.
“Am I the only one?” I cry to the Lord, “Where were You?” – still casting my cares upon Him; not as an obedient servant, but as an afterthought; the bleating of a wayward lamb who lost its way again.
Are you reaching the tipping point? Cry out to God – and quickly. He will not linger, but rush to save us from any circumstance. Trust in Him, for He is right there; waiting for us to call upon Him. He is mighty to save and deserves our praise:
You are my God, and I will praise You; You are my God, and I will exalt You. Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; His love endures forever. ~ Psalm 118:28-29 NIV
The Lord Almighty has sworn, “Surely, as I have planned so it will be, and as I have purposed, so it will happen“ ~ Isaiah 14:24 NIV
This is the plan determined for the whole world; this is the hand stretched out over all nations. For the Lord Almighty has purposed, and who can thwart Him? His hand is stretched out, and who can turn it back? ~ Isaiah 14:26-27 NIV
The Lord reigns, He is robed in majesty. The Lord is robed in majesty and armed with strength; indeed, the world is established, firm and secure. Your throne was established long ago; You are from all eternity. ~ Psalm 93:1 NIV
Do we trust what we see with our own eyes? Or do we trust in God’s Word? If we trust God’s authority over all, what business do we have giving in to feelings of panic during adversity or catastrophe? Anxiety is the playground of the evil one.
Help us, Father, to recognize your sovereign power over this earth, our lives, and our enemies. Give us peace from torments as we trust in Your power over all things real or imagined, living or dead, spiritual or natural, past or present. Thank You in the Name of Jesus. Amen.
God has plans for this world, not problems. There is never a panic in heaven. W. Ian Thomas
The prophet Habakkuk lives in a time around 600 B.C., when Babylon is about to invade Judah. He is extremely troubled about the time in which he lives. For him, it is the end times. Christ followers believe that we also live in the end times. Habakkuk questions the Lord in chapter one about world evil much the same as believers do today:
How long, Lord, must I call for help, but You do not listen? Or cry out to you, “Violence!” but You do not save? ~Habakkuk 1:2 NIV
God gives Habakkuk a revelation in chapter two – just as the Apostle John was given The Book of Revelation in the New Testament by Jesus Christ – the last book of God’s Word, our Bible:
Then the Lord replied, “Write down the revelation and make it plain on tablets so that a herald may run with it. For the revelation awaits an appointed time; it speaks of the end and will not prove false. Though it linger, wait for it; it will certainly come and will not delay… Look at the nations and watch – and be utterly amazed. For I am going to do something in your days that you would not believe, even if you were told.” ~ Habakkuk 1:2,3,5 NIV
As I watch what is going on in our world today, and the perplexing changes taking place in the nations, I am utterly amazed, just as the Lord predicted. Nothing makes sense anymore, except God’s Word. We must continue to watch, wait, and pray for strength like Habakkuk.
Easier said than done. Watching the world crumble is heartbreaking. Waiting does not mean we should complain as we wait.
Prayer: Forgive my impatience, Father, and replace my complaints with faithful expectations from Your Word. Nothing makes sense anymore but I will rejoice and trust in You. Help me to glorify You with a willing and cheerful heart for your service as I stand watch. Prepare me in Your strength with courage to face battles yet won. May I run with the fleetness of the deer as a herald with Your revelation given to a lost world and seek Your Presence at all times. In Your Son Jesus’ Holy Name, Amen.
The Lord is in His holy temple; let all the earth be silent before Him. ~ Habakkuk 2:20 NIV
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