Where the Heart Is – (Luke 12)

While Jesus was speaking to the crowds, someone spoke up and asked Jesus to tell his brother to divide the inheritance with him. We can assume that this was a younger brother, as the eldest would have had the “double-portion” of the estate, and so also would have control. We are not told whether he was just seeking to get what he was rightly owed, or he  wanted a bigger share. Since the parable that follows was about covetousness, the latter is likely, and Jesus, of course, refused to get involved in the dispute.

The Parable of the Rich Fool by Rembrandt, 1627.

The Parable of the Rich Fool by Rembrandt, 1627. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In the parable of the rich fool, the man had more already than he needed. But instead of using his wealth to help those in need, he was only concerned with being able to keep accumulating more. And so, he did just that. But then God told him that his soul was required of him that very night – not next week or next year, but now. So, God asked, who would possess all of these things that he had prepared for himself. The point is obvious. The man should have devoted as much effort to laying up treasures in heaven – doing good with his wealth, and becoming rich toward God. Riches will mean nothing at the end of this short life.

In verses 22-34, Jesus tells us not to worry and fret about what we will wear or what we eat. He reminds us how God even provides food for the birds of the air. Surely, we are more valued by Him! Jesus is not telling us that we cannot make plans to provide for our families and our future. The scriptures are plentiful with words to the contrary. But the wise words he speaks are often difficult for us to absorb – “which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? If then you are not able to do as small a thing as that, why are you anxious about the rest?” This makes so much sense, but it is so very difficult for those of us who daily battle with anxiety.

English: An anxious person

English: An anxious person (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Jesus says, “instead, seek his kingdom, and these things will be added to you.” In the earlier chapter, Jesus told His disciples not to fear those who can kill the body. Now He tells them not to be afraid because God wants to give us the kingdom. If we truly devote ourselves to being His children, keeping His commandments, doing good to others, and giving to those in need, not only will God provide for our basic needs here on earth, but He will provide us with a place with Him forever. What more could we want?

There is nothing that can happen to us in this life that will matter when we cross into eternity with the Lord – nothing! To this end, Jesus tells us to provide ourselves with “moneybags” that do not grow old. Where our treasure is, our hearts will be also. My heart has been focused too much of my life on the cares of this world. I remind myself of these things Jesus said, and keep trying to change that day by day.

(This year’s reading plan for Luke, Acts, and 1 and 2 Chronicles averages just 15 verses per day – 5 days per week!)
Schedule for this week
Read or listen to audio of today’s selection from Luke here
Read or listen to audio of today’s selection from 1 Chronicles here

/Bob’s boy
___________________
some images © V. Gilbert & Arlisle F. Beers

Please note: I did not design the reading plan that I am following in my blog.  All of my comments in this blog, however, are solely my responsibility.  When reading ANY commentary, you should ALWAYS refer first to the scripture, which is God’s unchanging and unfailing word. Reading schedules, as well as a link to the site where you can get the reading plan that I’m currently following for yourself can be found on the “Bible Reading Schedules” page of my website at http://graceofourlord.com.  

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The Good Portion – (Luke 10)

The village that Jesus and His followers entered in verse 38 was likely Bethany. Though the text does not state specifically, Mary and Martha in these verses are surely the same two women that were the sisters of Lazarus  (John 11:1). Lazarus is not mentioned here, and some have speculated that  it may be because of Jesus’ personal relationship with the three siblings.

 

English: Jesus at the house of Mary and Martha

English: Jesus at the house of Mary and Martha (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

Those who were Jesus’ enemies were still in power when Luke was written (John was written later), and so some believe that, given the nature of the miracle Jesus performed on Lazarus, it was not desirable to call more attention to this family. This is thoughtful speculation, but it could be over-thinking the situation. The Holy Spirit determined what would be included in each gospel. Though there was much else that happened at their home, Luke had a certain point to make.

 

Martha was distracted with “much serving” as a hostess, while Mary sat at Jesus’ feet and listened to His teaching. Martha thought Mary should help her instead, and she told Jesus so. Jesus answered: “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things, but only one thing is necessary. Mary has chosen the good portion, which will not be taken away from her.”

 

This passage is here simply to remind us of how easy it is for us to become so busy and distracted, so anxious and worried about other things, that we forget about what is most important. Martha and Mary had the Son of God in their home as a guest teaching those present personally. Martha’s heart was in the right place wanting to be a good hostess to all present. But what Jesus had to offer her was more important, and the rest would keep.

 

(This year’s reading plan for Luke, Acts, and 1 and 2 Chronicles averages just 15 verses per day – 5 days per week!)
Schedule for this week
Read or listen to audio of today’s selection from Luke here
Read or listen to audio of today’s selection from 1 Chronicles here

 

/Bob’s boy

 

___________________

 

some images © V. Gilbert & Arlisle F. Beers

 

Please note: I did not design the reading plan that I am following in my blog.  All of my comments in this blog, however, are solely my responsibility.  When reading ANY commentary, you should ALWAYS refer first to the scripture, which is God’s unchanging and unfailing word. Reading schedules, as well as a link to the site where you can get the reading plan that I’m currently following for yourself can be found on the “Bible Reading Schedules” page of my website at http://graceofourlord.com.  

 

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Psalm 112 – The Righteous Will Never Be Moved

lake_and_mountainsPsalms 111, 112, and 113 are sometimes referred to as “Hallelujah” psalms because they each begin with that exclamation (the ESV and some other versions translate as “Praise the Lord!”). Psalms 111 and 112 complement each other, as they each consists of an acrostic of 22 clauses or phrases arranged in 10 verses each.  Psalm 111 proclaims God’s greatness, mercy, and righteousness, whereas Psalm 112 considers and encourages the happiness, benevolence, and righteousness of God’s children. It praises God for all of the loving care He gives to those who truly fear Him, but says that such fear encompasses something more – a genuine delight in God’s word (verse 1b).

The righteous are to be blessed by God for treating his fellow-man with generosity, and conducting his affairs with justice. The righteous, the psalmist says, shall never be moved, with his heart steady and firm. He has no need for fear of bad news because he can trust in the Lord, secure in the knowledge that his righteousness endures forever.

Paul quotes from verse 9 in 2 Corinthians 9:9, encouraging the Corinthians to give generously to the collection for the needy brethren. The psalm tells the righteous that the reason they should have no fear is because the Lord will honor and care for him.

Read or listen to audio of ESV version of this selection from this link.

/Bob’s boy
___________________
some images © V. Gilbert & Arlisle F. Beers

Please note: I did not design the reading plan that I am following in my blog.  All of my comments in this blog, however, are solely my responsibility.  When reading ANY commentary, you should ALWAYS refer first to the scripture, which is God’s unchanging and unfailing word. Reading schedules, as well as a link to the site where you can get the reading plan that I’m currently following for yourself can be found on the “Bible Reading Schedules” page of my website at http://graceofourlord.com.