Well, as anyone in the northeast can attest, the last few days have had their challenges from the weather that the good Lord has sent us. Personally, I still don’t have electricity from the power company or internet service and have kept the house warm by a generator. I say all this by way of explanation for why I’ve dropped out of my daily blog. And I also bring this up to say that in order to try to catch up a bit, I may be posting a couple few shorter blogs a day until I’ve caught up.
Speaking of the blog, let’s get down to business, shall we?
There’s always hope
Our reading today contains the source of the famous spiritual “Dem Bones” — The Valley of Dry Bones, chapter 37. It’s a metaphor for the return of Israel — a virtual resurrection of the nation: “Our bones are dried up and our hope has perished.” (v. 11). But God wanted them to know, once again, that hope continued to be a viable option in their lives. If they’d repent and return to Him, Israel would return to their ancestral possession. And the meaning to us is the same; hope remains a viable option. Sometimes we manage to mess our lives us pretty bad, the consequences are pretty severe and we’re tempted to think that we are simply and completely ruined — our lives have as much hope as the dry bones in a cemetery. The world sees dry bones in a cemetery and thinks, Dead is dead; there’s no come back from this. But God has the power of resurrection. So, for those who’ve ruined a marriage or have been collateral damage in one — there’s hope. For lives wrecked by drugs, drink, or sexual misconduct — including those who are the collateral damage of such sinful and irresponsible living — there’s hope. The hope is God; don’t bother looking elsewhere. You don’t want what anyone else is selling. Even death isn’t too dire a problem for God to solve. It’s God who can bring dry bones back to life in the here and now — and in the future.
Gog and Magog
Although there is no consensus on the exact identity of the nation of Magog or its prince, Gog, what is clear is that there will be hostile neighbors who will attack Israel in the future; but Israel should take heart that God will rescue them. Gog and Magog come up again in Revelation as metaphorical enemies of Israel again, the symbolic name for the vast army whom God destroys at the last great battle (Rev. 20:8). The lesson for us is plain, God wins — He always wins, hands down, no contest, forget-about-it, period. Never let that one encouragement escape your mind as you navigate through the trials, temptations, and persecutions of this world. The world always looks like a winner, but it always loses next to the LORD.
See you tomorrow, Lord willing.