King Solomon has now received King Hiram’s response to the letter we were privy to in the last reading. We learn a few things of note in Hiram’s letter of reply. What did you notice?
First and foremost, we learn that King Hiram has great respect for the God of Israel. Generally speaking, the people of Tyre were not Israelites and they did not worship God. They had many gods distracting them from the truth. Yet, King Hiram says very affirming things about our God. He actually shows a lot more reverence than most non-believers today.
Continue reading “2 Chronicles 2:11-18 – A King’s Reply”
What a smooth and seamless transition of power! David had many sons, so it was fitting that a big deal was made during his succession. It was good to see that honoring God was part of the festivities. We’re given a glimpse into the future, too. Verse 23 says, “So Solomon took the throne of the Lord in place of his father, David, and he succeeded in everything, and all Israel obeyed him.” Solomon’s reign sounds ideal.
It’s key to see that all of Solomon’s brothers, as well as the officials and leaders were on board. But probably the best blessing of all was from God. The text says, “And the LORD exalted Solomon in the sight of all Israel, and he gave Solomon greater royal splendor than any king in Israel before him.” It will be good to see how God works in Solomon’s reign as we continue reading in 2 Chronicles.
Continue reading “1 Chronicles 29:21-30 – A Smooth Transition”
This was a fun passage for me to read being a musician involved in worship ministry for much of my adult life. You don’t have to be a musician to appreciate David’s intentions. He wanted the house of God to be filled with music! And most of our churches still today use music of one sort or another to accompany times of worship.
When I imagine the sound of these instruments, lyre, cymbals, and harp, it’s an interesting sound. I think of two of the instruments as more mellow sounding, and then comes the crash of the cymbals for effect. I wonder what those instruments were like back in David’s day.
Continue reading “1 Chronicles 25:1-31 – Musicians’ Duties”
Some of the verses of this lament were very hard to read. I won’t quote those horrific scenes, but they will haunt me when I think of the punishment God’s people endured for their sinfulness. When we read passages like this, we often want to run immediately to the New Testament and fill up on some grace. Instead, take a moment to reflect on what God is saying to you today.
This lament is written from the viewpoint of the misery affecting the citizens of Zion. We see the fate of several different classes of people mentioned. Escaping this reality was not an option, even for the rich and powerful. These terrible things were punishment and a direct result of the people’s sinfulness.
Continue reading “Lamentations 4:1-22 – Punishment for Sin”
While the first lament was of a sorrowing widow, Jerusalem, the second poem comes from the perspective of God’s anger and the devastation it can wield. The author was consumed with sadness and fear. What was going to happen? Writing these words in his own anguish would help people never forget. Do you think that was the author’s intent in the moment?
Lamentations is a book to read in Hebrew, if you can, because some of these poems are acrostic. That means each of the 22 verses starts with a letter from the Hebrew alphabet. One thought as to why the author wrote the laments like that was to facilitate memorization. We, as well as the original audience, should never forget what God’s anger can do. Lamentations helps us remember.
Continue reading “Lamentations 2:1-22 – God’s Anger”