February 4 : Exo 10 | Psa 64-65 | Rom 15-16

Reading 1 - Exo 10:16

"Pharaoh quickly summoned Moses and Aaron and said, 'I have sinned against the LORD your God and against you' " (Exo 10:16).

There is a radical distinction between natural regret and God-given repentance. The flesh can feel remorse, acknowledge its evil deeds, and be ashamed of itself. However, this sort of disgust with past actions can be quickly shrugged off, and the individual can soon go back to his old wicked ways. None of the marks of true repentance described in 2Co 7:11 are found in his behavior:

"See what this godly sorrow has produced in you: what earnestness, what eagerness to clear yourselves, what indignation, what alarm, what longing, what concern, what readiness to see justice done. At every point you have proved yourselves to be innocent in this matter."

Repentance of the "mouth", without repentance of the heart, and the life, and the actions, is meaningless. Don't just be sorry. What are you going to DO about it?

Out of a list of 11 men in the Bible who said, "I have sinned," possibly only five actually and truly repented.

  • David (2Sa 12:13; 24:10; 1Ch 21:8; Psa 41:4),

  • Nehemiah (Neh 1:6),

  • Job (Job 42:5,6),

  • Micah (Mic 7:9),

  • and the prodigal son (Luk 15:18).

The other (most likely less sincere) instances?

  • Pharaoh in Exo 9:27; 10:16;

  • Balaam in Num 22:34;

  • Achan in Jos 7:20;

  • Saul in 1Sa 15:24,30; 26:21;

  • Shimei in 2Sa 19:20;

  • Judas in Mat 27:4.

Reading 2 - Psa 65:7

"...who stilled the roaring of the seas, the roaring of their waves, and the turmoil of the nations" (Psa 65:7).

Here is prophesied, as it were, Christ's stilling of the storm (Mar 4:37-41), the saving of the demoniac Legion (Mar 5:1-16), and the fear imparted to the Gentiles round about (Mar 5:17). The linking together of these miracles -- as seen in Mark 4 and 5 -- reflects the power of God described in this passage.

He who could quieten the uproar of one man's tortured mind, and calm the raging of a hurricane on the sea, can quell the turbulence of the world's nations too -- and he will!

"He will proclaim peace to the nations. His rule will extend from sea to sea and from the River to the ends of the earth" (Zec 9:10).

"They were pleased to do it, and indeed they owe it to them. For if the Gentiles have shared in the Jews' spiritual blessings, they owe it to the Jews to share with them their material blessings" (Rom 15:27).

Reading 3 - Rom 15:27

"Such men sometimes think that they give all that is required of them in giving money. This has been one of the great errors of Christendom, the attempt to buy that which is "without money and without price".

It is true that the apostle Paul says something regarding spiritual and carnal things which seems to suggest reciprocity in these matters. We must not put his teaching upside down, however. He says that Gentiles who are partakers of Israel's spiritual riches have a duty to minister in carnal matters. He certainly does not suggest that carnal wealth can buy the spiritual treasures. The two kinds of riches are on a different plane. The currency is different and there is no known rate of exchange. The wealthy man who goes to his chapel with a feeling that he can purchase anything and a readiness to give of his abundance if the service pleases him, is not likely to receive any real spiritual food. He is not in the right condition to appreciate it. Possibly husks please him best. If so he can buy what he requires" (IC, Principles and Proverbs).

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