God is serious about obedience, isn't He? What an awesome life is promised if the people of Israel simply obey God's instructions—prosperity and peace as He dwells with them. But disobedience will result in discipline, destruction, and death. He promises to punish their rebellion seven times over, be hostile toward them and ultimately abhor them. Even their offerings will no longer please Him.
God's grace is so amazing because with Him there is always the "But" based upon His covenant, His unconditional promise to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. My favorite "But" is Ephesians 2:4, "But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ." Oh, the blessing of being a child of the promise (Galatians 4:23-29). How thankful I am God gave me a circumcised heart!
God of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Roy, Your loving kindness and faithfulness overwhelm. Thank You for the covenant of promise through Jesus Christ, our Lord, and Savior. May joyful obedience overflow from the lives of those who acknowledge You as their God.
How amazing is the continual flow of Scripture! What an appropriate transition from Leviticus 26 and rejoicing in the faithfulness of the covenant-keeping God, to David who proclaims, "Shout for joy in the LORD, O you righteous! Praise befits the upright. Give thanks to the LORD."
This is the LORD, who by His word made the heavens and by the breath of His mouth all their host (v 6). Don't you marvel at the fact that the LORD, His Word and His Breath (a description of the Spirit) all played their role in creation? Isaiah 40:26 (NLT) describes what David is saying like this, "Look up into the heavens. Who created all the stars? He brings them out like an army, one after another, calling each by its name. Because of his great power and incomparable strength, not a single one is missing."
This is the LORD whose decisions endure forever. Men and nations scheme and plan, but His purpose stands. He is the One who looks down from heaven, where He sits on His throne and sees all.
LORD God, why would I trust in anything or anyone but You? When I remember Your eye is on those who fear You, whose hope is in Your steadfast love, my soul and heart rejoice in You, my help and shield. My hope is in You.
Paul describes his purpose as a servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ proclaiming the truth for the benefit of God's elect. Paul then reminds Titus of why he was left in Crete. Titus is to finish what Paul started by appointing men who can proclaim the truth for the benefit of God's elect.
Paul gives a thorough description of the character of a man who God would call for this purpose in verses 6-9. The local church should be full of men who meet the qualifications given in the first two verses because this is simply a description of a godly man. Notice, however, the final detail of an elder's qualification in verse nine. This man must have a strong faith in the truthfulness and dependability of the Word of God so that, he can teach and correct based on God's instruction rather than the wisdom of man.
Why is that qualification so important? Because as he says in verse 10-11, there are MANY false and deceptive teachers. The Bible is full of warnings concerning false teachers. Therefore, it is imperative an elder know God's Word and be able to speak and defend the truth.
Holy Spirit, please raise up men who, like Paul and Titus, proclaim the truth for the benefit of the elect. Please protect them from the snares of the enemy. Watch over and guard their families since we know they, too, are a target.