Monday, September 28, 2015

Our Equal Opportunity God - September 28, 2015

Psalm 113 (New International Version, ©2011)
1 Praise the LORD.
Praise the LORD, you his servants;
praise the name of the LORD.
2 Let the name of the LORD be praised,
both now and forevermore.
3 From the rising of the sun to the place where it sets,
the name of the LORD is to be praised.

4 The LORD is exalted over all the nations,
his glory above the heavens.
5 Who is like the LORD our God,
the One who sits enthroned on high,
6 who stoops down to look
on the heavens and the earth?

7 He raises the poor from the dust
and lifts the needy from the ash heap;
8 he seats them with princes,
with the princes of his people.

9 He settles the childless woman in her home
as a happy mother of children.

Praise the LORD.

Luke 6:20-22 (New International Version, ©2011)
20 Looking at his disciples, he said:

“Blessed are you who are poor,
for yours is the kingdom of God.

21 Blessed are you who hunger now,
for you will be satisfied.
Blessed are you who weep now,
for you will laugh.

22 Blessed are you when people hate you,
when they exclude you and insult you
and reject your name as evil,
because of the Son of Man.

These days it is easy for those who are "well-off" to snub their noses at those who have very little. Our current generation has forsaken the things of God, and instead have embraced materialism. Unfortunately that is true for many Christians as well. We are just as guilty of seeking after the things of this world to build our self-worth, as those who have lost themselves seeking after worldly things. We can be just as covetous of the wealthy lifestyle of the "rich and famous" as everyone else is.

Fortunately this is not true of our God, and it was especially not true for Jesus. Our Savior spent much of His time with the poor, both those that were poor in possessions and poor in spirit. He leveled the playing field by the promise of His great blessing. In His departure He promised the gift of the Comforter, the Holy Spirit, to bring peace and well-being to all who would be "poor" in this world. We have the comfort of knowing that if we lose everything in life, we still have the joy and peace that He is with us.

Our God is an equal opportunity God. He offers His gift of salvation to all, the rich and the poor. Truth is that although we may be rich materially, because we have placed our faith in our own efforts and riches, we will usually end up poor in Spirit. Better to be poor in the terms of this world, because in following and serving Him, He will lift us out of our poverty and exalt us before all men.

Photo by Cristie Reiter post from Nicaragua, 3-31-2008, from The World Race

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