Observations: I find many things in 1 Corinthians 11 very confusing. When I was growing up, all women had to wear a hat to church. If we forgot to wear a hat, the nuns would bobby pin a piece of Kleenex on our head (so we always remembered to wear our hats). This of course made for the whole Easter Bonnet parade when everyone showed off their new spring hats. (I remember a white one with a bow that made me feel like a sailor…but I digress…) I remember how happy everyone was when after the Second Vatican Council you could leave your hats at home. I’m still chewing on the meaning of this passage about head coverings. Some believe it means women should never cut their hair. Others believe they must be under the authority of a man. Someday I will understand it.
Psalm 44 is a cry for help. It is a cry many of us could be feeling now. I have thought much over the past few weeks how the Lord would send trouble on the people for their disobedience, and then someone would fall on their face (standing in the gap) and pray, and the Lord would stop the plague or win the battle for the people. Lord, we do cry that today!
Joshua 23-24, Joshua prepares to die. Just as Moses did before he died, Joshua prepares the people to go on without him. He reminds the people what God has done for them and then tells them to choose. Will they follow the false gods of the land they have inherited, or will they follow the Lord, their God, who has given them the land. Of course, the people all profess their devotion (ya, right….for that moment maybe).
Scripture: “ Whoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty concerning the body and blood of the Lord. Let a person examine himself, then, and so eat of the bread and drink of the cup. For anyone who eats and drinks without discerning the body eats and drinks judgment on himself.” (1 Corinthians 11: 27-29)
Application: This is another confusing passage in 1 Corinthians. Many will not take communion because they fear God will make them sick if they have any unconfessed sin. John Wesley, however, taught that holy communion is a sacrament of grace and that all should partake. The real problem in the Corinthian culture was that some people would come to the ‘love feast’ and eat all the food there while the working class people would show up later and have nothing to eat. This passage teaches us that we are ALL the body of Christ and we must treat everyone equally.
Prayer: Lord, I pray that you will show us when our actions are unworthy. Lead us to do your will and to love as you love. Let us not forsake those in need. Show us the way Lord.
Observations: Joshua 20 was the allotment of property for Levi. Joshua 21 is the story of the Eastern Tribe’s heading back home. They built an altar at the Jordan as a testimony to their love for God. Psalm 47 is a hymn of praise to the Lord! In 1 Corinthians 10, there is a warning against idolatry. Paul tells us that no temptation can overtake us that God will not give us a way out.
Scripture: “All things are lawful, but not all things are helpful. All things are lawful, but not all things build up. Let no one seek his own good, but the good of his neighbor.” (1 Corinthians 10:23-24)
Application: I often hear it said that just because you can do something, doesn’t mean it is the right thing to do (like eating a hot fudge sundae when you are on a diet). You look at what is allowed on television these days, but that doesn’t mean we should watch it. You look at what is allowed on the internet these days, but that doesn’t mean you should go to those sights. You look at how you spend your time, and have to question whether it is the best use of your time. You look at how you use your resources, and wonder if you should have used it to help another? In these times of Stay at Home, pay attention to how you are using your time and your resources. Are you being pleasing to God?
Prayer: Dear Father, guide my steps Lord. Show me your ways. Lead me in how I use your resources to your glory! Amen
Next Reading: Joshua 23-24; Psalm 44; 1 Corinthians 11