Blessings and Curses
You rebuke the arrogant, the cursed,
Who wander from Your commandments.
Take away reproach and contempt from me,
For I observe Your testimonies. Psalm 119:21-22 (NASB)
-God does not approve of the arrogant, those who choose not to live by His standards.
-The psalmist deires to have "reproach and contempt" taken away from him becuase he is onebient to God's word.
Rebuke. I have read that word many times but its meaning jumped out at me this morning. I oftentimes find it valuable in my study to look up the definitions of words, even words I think I know pretty well. This is what I found for rebuke: "express sharp disapproval or criticism of (someone) because of their behavior or actions." This is serious. Why would God rebuke the arrogant? Seems a rather obvious question from my perpsective. Arrogance is "having or revealing an exaggerated sense of one's own importance or abilities." The arrogant do not feel the need to read and observe God's word. They do not need it because they believe they are better on their own. They do not need it because they rely on themselves and not on God. They do no need it because they think they are better than God. Their arrogance leads them to be cursed. "Cursed be anyone who does not confirm the words of this law by doing them. And all the people shall say, ‘Amen.’ " (Deuteronomy 27:26, ESV) There are no blessings to be had for those who do not keep God's commandments. That is where each one of us lives until we repent of our sin and believe on the name of Jesus. There is no other way. There is only God's way. The choice is ours to choose or reject Him. Those who reject Christ, those who do obey God's law are headed towards death and destruction. There is no alternative. They can never be good enough on their own merit and only arrogance leads people to believe that.
But we come humbly to God, confessing our failings and recognizing that without Him we are destined to die. But blessed be God who has taken away our reproach and contempt because we "observe His testimonies." I had not thought about how I do that today as a Christian. Too often I think about this merely in terms of the Law. We however have the testimony of Jesus. He came to testify about His Father, God. We studied John 8 last week for our Sunday School class. Jesus said, "I am He who testifies about Myself, and the Father who sent Me testifies about Me." (John 8:18, NASB) So what is Jesus testimony?
-“I am the living bread that came down out of heaven; if anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever; and the bread also which I will give for the life of the world is My flesh.”
(John 6:51, NASB)
-“Then Jesus again spoke to them, saying, ” I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life.” (John 8:12, NASB)
-“I am the door; if anyone enters through Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture.” (John 10:9, NASB)
-“I am the good shepherd; the good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep.” ( John 10:11, NASB)
-“do you say of Him, whom the Father sanctified and sent into the world, ‘You are blaspheming,’ because I said, ‘I am the Son of God’?” (John 10:36, NASB)
-“Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me will live even if he dies,” (John 11:25, NASB)
-“Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.” (John 14:6, NASB)
-“I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.” (John 14:6, NASB)
And this is what did the Father testified about Jesus:
-“While he was still speaking, a bright cloud overshadowed them, and behold, a voice out of the cloud said, “This is My beloved Son, with whom I am well-pleased; listen to Him!” (Matthew 17:5, NASB)
When we "observe" these testimonies there is no more curse! Without Jesus we are an arrogant, cursed people; with Jesus we are a forgiven and redeemed people. We have life...eternal life. Having made that good confession: that on my own I am a wretched sinner and fall short of the glory of God so have put my faith in the death and resurrection of His only beloved Son (Romans 3:20-26), it is now my duty to continue in that faith; to walk according to God's Word. When I truly consider the high price of the gift I have been given-the gift of God's grace- it leads me on a path of willing servitude to the Master of the Universe.
Grace, Peace, and Mercy,
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I am a woman with a Mary heart and these are my musings as I read and study God's Word
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