October 31, Reading 1 – 1 Chronicles 12

Reading

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SAA Notes

Kinsmen of Saul joined David even while he was at Ziklag serving with Achish King of Gath. National leaders began to flock to David in his exile. Some of those serving with the Philistines returned with David. Look again at the list of Jesus’ 12 disciples. You will find similar men.

SJA Notes

“… For there was joy in Israel.”

So the exiles, really only a handful of Israelites, had returned to a broken Jerusalem, a temple destroyed and needing to be rebuilt.

What does the Holy Spirit have for them in this passage?

God reminds them of David.

Israelites reading this were struggling with sorrow, with lamentations. They had spent seventy years weeping by the rivers of Babylon!

But here God points them to joy.

That as God raised up David and gave to him a great army, the coming Messiah (see the testimony of both the woman and Jesus in John 4, at the well of Jacob) would bring about joy in Israel, amongst God’s people, in a true and better way even than from David.

These passages by looking back helped the exiles, and help us today, to look forward!

For us, it is looking forward to that glorious day in the new heavens and new earth – When our God will dwell with us in all fulfilment, and we with Him, His people. No more crying, no more weeping and lamentations. The rebuilt kingdom in truth!

* Father God,

Thank You for pointing us back to David and Your building of his kingdom Lord God.

Please teach us what You want for us today.

Amen.

October 31, Reading 2 – Ezekiel 13

Reading

Audio, Visual

SAA Notes

Ezekiel’s warning to deceived and deceiving prophets should make every Christian speaker, preacher, leader give pause to reflect on what they say is from the LORD! The Apostle John tells us (in Revelation 19:10) that the spirit of true prophecy is the testimony of Jesus – not the testimony of our future.

SJA Notes

* Dear God, please show us Your wisdom today from Your word.

“My hand will be against the prophets who see false visions and who give lying divinations.”

The more we read through God’s word we come to see just how corrupt God’s people can become when they move away from their King.

We see it in Israel’s history.

Church leadership that misleads the people, that say “Peace” when there is no peace. That build up false doctrine and cover it with nice moralism and spiritualism.

God is against this behaviour, this leadership.

Without Jesus, we veer off – Once can see this with a cursory examination of various groups of people in our generation now who perhaps starting out trying to tell people about Jesus have been led astray when discovering power and wealth and fame.

As with Israel so with us.

Today we have church leadership that misleads, saying “Peace” when there is no peace.

But deeper still, we the people, we can become complicit with the leadership (as with Israel) by ignoring God’s call to live holy lives (according to His word), listening to the honeyed (easy to hear) words.

Are we profaning God in our lives today with our behaviour, or honoring Him?

* Father God,

You are holy. We are not.

You are righteous. We are not.

You are God. We are not.

Please help us today Lord, for we cannot help ourselves.

But You do. And have. And will.

More of JESUS, less of us!

Amen.

October 31, Reading 3 – John 4:31-54

Reading

Audio, Visual

SAA Notes

Jesus tells us what He is truly about – see verse 34. Can you also aver with the Samaritans this man really is the Saviour of the world? The royal official took Jesus at His word (v.49). Pray for those on our congregation’s periphery that they too might take Jesus at His word!

SJA Notes

Remember the woman from yesterday’s passage?

“Many Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, ‘He told me all that I ever did.'”

This should be of marvellous encouragement to us! And exhortation and conviction too.

Because telling people about Jesus, who He is, what He does, HIS WORDS TO US – This is a powerful message. One that resonates into people, for we all have eternity set in our hearts, and our King tells us those words of eternal life.

It is true what Jesus says,

“Look, I tell you, lift up your eyes, and see that the fields are white for harvest.”

Let us be about the work God has ordered for us, throughout all our days, to promote Him. To do His will, walking obediently underneath it. To point people to Jesus, to tell them of our Saviour Lord!

* Dear Heavenly Father,

Please help us to be effective witnesses of Jesus, to His saving grace, His work of salvation.

Thank You for Your love for us.

Amen.