Today’s Reading: Joshua 16-17
Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion on the right-hand side).
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Key Verse: Joshua 17:13
And it happened, when the children of Israel grew strong, that they put the Canaanites to forced labor, but did not utterly drive them out.
In the worship of their gods, the Canaanites followed evil practices such as killing their children and offering them as sacrifices. In their temples, as an act of worship, they committed fornication, adultery, pedophilia, and various perverted sexual acts. God knew, as history will prove to us over our readings of the next seven books, that such corruption would soon influence His people. The “forced labour” would soon become “spiritual and moral saboteurs!”
We may want to ask ourselves, “How are we being influenced by the culture in which we live?” Do we tolerate more easily practices that violate God’s laws for sexual behaviour? Does pedophilia produce a revulsion as it once did? Are we as horrified as we once were at the slaughter of the innocent little lives in abortion? Should these precious lives not have the protection of the state? Is there a general decline in personal and public moral standards? If we answer is “Yes,” then we are following the path of Israel. The stories of the moral decline of Israel every three or four generations should be a dire warning to us. Jesus repeated the words twice, “Except you repent, you shall all likewise perish” (Luke 13:3, 5).
PRAYER FOR TODAY:
Lord God, I repent for willingly tolerating moral rot in my generation. You are the Judge in the final analysis, and I must “hold the truth in love.” However, I pray that I will, by Your grace, hold Your standard for human behaviour high, loving people unconditionally, and hating the sin that Your Word declares will ultimately destroy the people You and I love! I weep as I pray for my 13 great-grandchildren in the face of the destruction of the values which sustained my parents in wars, financial collapse, and in family life. God, please help us to be loving and strong in our convictions on right and wrong. In Jesus’ Name I pray. Amen.
100 PERSONAL WORDS:
In some of the recent pictures my son David Reynold has taken for us, they show layer upon layer of City Centres which have been built and destroyed by wars. Of course the rebuilding did not occur until they had repented of taking on the sinful practices of the people around them. Someone said, “The one thing we learn from history is that we don’t learn from history.” I believe that in my own life I can prove that statement wrong. When I took a strong stand in support of the word “marriage” to be for man/woman unions only, the Lord clearly said to me, “David, don’t speak out on this issue unless you have the same attitude Abraham had toward Sodom.” Abraham prayed fervently for their protection. He risked his life for them in war. He introduced them to the King of Righteousness, Melchizedek, a man who represented God (Genesis 14). I cried out to God for Abraham’s attitude, and I believe I received this grace. It was a losing cause, but the struggle for God’s standards will not end until God says, “The End.”
Yours for God’s will to be done on earth as it is in Heaven,
P.S. My son Ron and his wife Ann were guests on 100 Huntley Street this past week sharing a teaching on marriage about how to “hold the truth in love,” when it comes to dealing with difficult issues in marriage, without having a negative, critical spirit. HERE is a link to their interview. Also, Ron and Ann talked about their upcoming special Valentine’s Date Night event on Saturday, February 18th, at the Crossroads Centre in Burlington. It’s Called “Love & Laughter,” and I would encourage all my blog readers to buy tickets, if you live in the area. HERE is a link to the event info on Ron & Ann’s website for their ministry called Heart to Heart Marriage & Family Ministries.