May 25, 2019 1 Samuel 22; Psalm 17,35; 2 Corinthians 7

“There is only one thing worth being concerned about. Mary has discovered it, and it will not be taken away from her.” Luke 10:42 (NLT) The heart of this ministry is to inspire a love for God’s Word and encourage the discipline of daily Bible reading and SOAP journaling. These are a few of our SOAP notes from today’s reading. We encourage you to read and journal on your own first, then join us in conversation about what God revealed to YOU today. Click HERE to go directly to the daily reading if you wish.

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Holy actions of God | guest post

S~ Then he went to Nob, the town of the priests and killed the priests’ families – men and women, children and babies – and all the cattle, donkeys, sheep, and goats.  1 Samuel 22:19 (NLT)

contrast with 1 Samuel 15:9 (NLT) Saul and his men spared Agag’s life and kept the best of the sheep and goats, the cattle, the fat calves, and the lambs – everything, in fact, that appealed to them.  They destroyed only what was worth-less or of poor quality.

O~ In 1 Samuel 15, God instructed Saul to kill EVERYTHING of the Amalekites, all the people, animals, even babies. Saul did not follow God’s command.  Then in 1 Samuel 22, Saul does kill EVERYTHING associated with the priests; the people, animals, even the babies.  This action did not come from God.

A~ Saul killed all of the priests from Nob because they helped out David.  Saul had a rage and jealousy toward David that led to such destruction.  It was unholy what Saul did to the town of Nob.  Yet, earlier in Saul’s life, God instructed Saul to do exactly what he did to the town of Nob towards the Amalekites.  That was a holy instruction of God to Saul, but he didn’t do it.

Even though the actions are the same (killing everyone and everything in the town), the heart behind those actions are what truly reveal a person’s character.  Saul was so selfish!

I can take instruction from the Lord to not eat something, that would be holy instruction and good if I follow the Lord’s command.  But two days later, I can not eat something, but be doing that same action, and my heart be in the wrong spot.  It’s so confusing and convicting at the same time.  Ultimately, it’s about my heart.  What am I worshiping at that moment, who I am I trying to elevate; me or Christ?

P~ Thank You Lord for Saul’s example of a single action, when directed from You, it was holy.  When coming from Saul, it was unholy.  Lord, I don’t want my heart bent like Saul’s, towards myself, I fight this every day!  Burn away all selfish desire within me and shape my heart more like David’s, one after Your’s!  I love YOU Lord Jesus!  In Your Name I pray!  Amen!

Craving the Things of God | Joni Tyner

S~ Let us cleanse ourselves from everything that can defile our body or spirit.  And let us work toward complete holiness because we fear God.  2 Corinthians 7:1 (NLT)

O~ Paul is teaching us to turn away from sin and then strive for holiness.

A~ The notes in my Bible say the Corinthians were to completely break from their past ( paganism) and to give themselves to God alone.  As I grow in my faith journey, there are certain behaviors that I should completely eliminate. This is personal to me, not “rules” for everyone.  I have found that as I strive to have my life look more like Jesus,  I become less anxious and more content with this life.  At the same time, I also have a growing hunger to live in a way that gives God glory and fulfills the purpose He has created me for.  I think one of the reasons God asks us to cleanse ourselves of certain stuff is that it distracts us from living out our true purpose.

P~ Dear Lord,  I pray for a hunger in my heart to crave the things of Your Kingdom.  As that love grows, the other, less important stuff in my life will naturally decrease.  Thank you for the cross and the grace I have as I walk on this journey to knowing You.

Purify | Kimi Miller

S~ Therefore, since we have these promises, dear friends, let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God. 2 Corinthians 7:1 (NIV)

O~ There are a lot of things in my life that are more worldly than godly – my language, the things I watch on TV, the way I eat. If I am to live set apart (holy), then these things have to change, because whether or not I chose to admit it, these things contaminate my body and spirit.

A~ I’ve tried before to eliminate these things from my lifestyle. I’ve done well for awhile, but then I find myself going back to them. Finding excuses as to why it’s okay for me to watch this show, or eat that cake. I find myself compromising on these things, and who I want to be. I’ve said it before, that I shouldn’t watch certain things, but then I allow myself to do so after I’ve “been good” for awhile – almost like, “Look, I can stop whenever I want, so watching this show now isn’t going to hurt me.” But that’s exactly how little things get into your life to cause greater damage.

But maybe I was wanting to eliminate these things from my life so God would be pleased with me; which at its core means I wanted to do these things for myself.

But Your word says, ‘perfecting holiness out of reverence for God.’

Reverence is defined as a feeling or attitude of deep respect tinged with awe; veneration. It is the outward manifestation of this feeling: to pay reverence. a gesture indicative of deep respect; an obeisance, bow, or curtsy. A way of living my life because of how I feel about God.

When I chose those things that “contaminate” my body and spirit, I’m choosing myself (my fleshly feelings, emotions, thoughts, desires) over God.

I don’t want to do that, I want to chose You, Jesus.

P~ Because I revere You, O Lord, I want to make wiser choices about what I allow into my body and spirit – especially with food choices, and certainly entertainment choices. Forgive me, Jesus, and help me to find better ways to fill my time than feasting on trash.

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