Todays readings.. Joshua 7, Isaiah 11, 2 Thessalonians 3
“GIVE GLORY TO THE LORD … TELL ME …”
The above words were spoken by Joshua to Achan after the LORD had identified him as the one who had committed a serious sin. This sin was why, after the success in destroyed Jericho, the Israelites had failed to destroy the small city of Ai. Joshua’s words are significant, “”My son, give glory to the LORD God of Israel and give praise to him. And tell me now what you have done; do not hide it from me.” [Joshua 7 v.19] Achan had taken valuable spoil he obtained in the conquest of Jericho and hidden it in his tent: it cost him his life! Solomon wrote in Ecclesiastes, “One sinner destroys much good.” [9 v.18] What things have the potential to cost us eternal life?
Isaiah chapter 11 is a marvellous prophecy; firstly, of the work of Jesus in his first coming because “the Spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him …. and his delight shall be in the fear of the LORD” [v.2,3]. Achan had no “fear”, i.e. awe of God’s all-seeing eyes. Jesus was totally conscious of this – and of his will – and what he had set before him to accomplish. Our “fear” must include a sense of “awe” at the creation and its’ Creator and what we can accomplish!
Then Isaiah is given a wondrous ‘picture’ of God’s kingdom in action when, after striking “the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips he shall kill the wicked” [v.4] nature will be brought into harmony, even “the nursing child shall play over the hole of the cobra” [v.8]. Most wonderful of all, “they shall not hurt or destroy in all my holy mountain; for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea.” [v.9] and surely all those alive will “give glory to the Lord.”
We completed today reading Paul’s 2nd letter to the Thessalonians. Paul asks them to “pray … that the word of the Lord may speed ahead and be honoured, as happened among you, and that we may be delivered from wicked and evil men.” [ch. 3 v.1,2] How much we need to do that today. Paul then adds, “For not all have faith. But the Lord is faithful. He will establish you and guard you …” How real is our faith? We read yesterday in ch. 1 of the coming awesome time “when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven .., when he comes on that day to be glorified in his saints …” [v.7,10]
We ponder the use of the word “glory” in various contexts; if we give God “glory” now in the ways open to us – remembering that Paul prayed that “our God may make you worthy of his calling” [v.11] – we will, by the grace of our Lord, be there when Isaiah’s prophecy is fulfilled and “the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD,”