Tuesday, 3 February 2015

Exodus 22: Our Gracious God

Good evening, friends. How has your day been?
Today we are looking at chapter 22 of Exodus. What verse/s have spoken to you in this chapter? After reading through the whole chapter, I found some special nuggets of truth about our great and wonderful God. In verse 1 we read about a man stealing someone else's ox or sheep, selling or killing it and the subsequent punishment being that he has to restore five oxen for the one ox, or four sheep for the sheep.This reminded me of the story of Zacchaeus in Luke 19:8. He knew that when he got saved the godly and right thing to do was to restore what he had unjustly stolen from others and he volunteered to do just that. He was showing the fruit of his salvation. This tells me that when we are saved, we shouldn't have to be forced or coerced into doing the right thing. We should want to do it because it pleases and glorifies our Lord. 

There are some sins mentioned in these verses that I'm sure you have been shocked by, and rightly so. You just wonder how deep into sin some people fall. I think here in Northern Ireland especially we are quite sheltered and don't know the half of what goes on out there in the big world, and if you're like me, you'd rather not know. We might think that these sins are new or just starting up in our generation, but from what we read here, these things have been going on since the Fall in the Garden of Eden. These happenings just prove how sinful man really is. BUT...the good news is that no matter what any man, woman or young person has done, the Lord loves them and wants them to come to Him for salvation. Sin is sin in God's sight, whether it's murder or a proud look, whether it's swearing at someone or thinking evil thoughts in the heart, God sees it all as sin. We have hard and sinful hearts from birth, but the Lord Jesus Christ came to earth, lived, died and rose again so that we could be free from sin and an eternity without Him, if we simply trust in the work He accomplished on the cross at Calvary. How do we know all this from reading Exodus 22? From four simple, but meaningful, words in verse 27; the words that spoke to my heart above all the others in the chapter - "For I am gracious". The Lord is full of grace and He extends this free offer of mercy to those who have not yet come to trust Him. Please think about the need of your soul. You need grace and forgiveness for all sin and you will find complete grace in Christ. Also, for the Christian who has fallen into bypath meadows far from the Lord, be glad today that He still loves you and wants you to come back to him for He, and He alone, "is gracious".

Prayer matters: Ask the Lord to reveal to you the sins you have committed today and seek His grace and mercy in forgiveness. Be honest with the Lord; you don't need to hide things from Him; in fact, you can't hide them from Him. He knows all about your heart. Rejoice in His great love and grace to sinners and be thankful that you can experience wholeness again with Him.

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