Two Scriptures to Ponder

This morning the following two pieces of scripture (copied below with my emphasis) came across my path. I offer them below with my thoughts.

  • One

“A leper came to him, begging on his knees, “If you want to, you can cleanse me.”

Deeply moved, Jesus put out his hand, touched him, and said, “I want to. Be clean.”

Then and there the leprosy was gone, his skin smooth and healthy.”

(Mark 1:40–42, The Message)

  • Two

“A man out of the crowd answered, “Teacher, I brought my mute son, made speechless by a demon, to you. Whenever it seizes him, it throws him to the ground. He foams at the mouth, grinds his teeth, and goes stiff as a board. I told your disciples, hoping they could deliver him, but they couldn’t.
Jesus said, “What a generation! No sense of God! How many times do I have to go over these things? How much longer do I have to put up with this? Bring the boy here.”
They brought him. When the demon saw Jesus, it threw the boy into a seizure, causing him to writhe on the ground and foam at the mouth. He asked the boy’s father, “How long has this been going on?”
“Ever since he was a little boy. Many times it pitches him into fire or the river to do away with him. If you can do anything, do it. Have a heart and help us!
Jesus said, “If? There are no ‘ifs’ among believers. Anything can happen.
No sooner were the words out of his mouth than the father cried, “Then I believe. Help me with my doubts!

(Mark 9:17–24, The Message)

  • Three

My take away? That we should hold nothing back from Jesus. If we are in need we must remember that Jesus is present, able, and willing to help us.  Nothing is to hard or impossible for God!

 

God is incomparable, irreplaceable…

““Think about this. Wrap your minds around it. This is serious business, rebels. Take it to heart. Remember your history, your long and rich history.

I am GOD, the only God you’ve had or ever will have— incomparable, irreplaceable— From the very beginning telling you what the ending will be,

All along letting you in on what is going to happen, Assuring you, ‘I’m in this for the long haul, I’ll do exactly what I set out to do,’…

I’ve said it, and I’ll most certainly do it. I’ve planned it, so it’s as good as done.”

  • Isaiah 46:8–11, The Message

When what you do doesn’t matter

        “That famous promise God gave Abraham—that he and his children would possess the earth—was not given because of something Abraham did or would do. It was based on God’s decision to put everything together for him, which Abraham then entered when he believed.

       If those who get what God gives them only get it by doing everything they are told to do and filling out all the right forms properly signed, that eliminates personal trust completely and turns the promise into an iron-clad contract! That’s not a holy promise; that’s a business deal. A contract drawn up by a hard-nosed lawyer and with plenty of fine print only makes sure that you will never be able to collect.

       But if there is no contract in the first place, simply a promise—and God’s promise at that—you can’t break it. This is why the fulfillment of God’s promise depends entirely on trusting God and his way, and then simply embracing him and what he does. God’s promise arrives as pure gift.

        That’s the only way everyone can be sure to get in on it, those who keep the religious traditions and those who have never heard of them. For Abraham is father of us all. He is not our racial father—that’s reading the story backward. He is our faith father.” (Romans 4:13–16, The Message)  

Why you can trust God….

Why would you ever complain, O Jacob,
or, whine, Israel, saying,
“GOD has lost track of me.
He doesn’t care what happens to me”?
Don’t you know anything? Haven’t you been listening?
GOD doesn’t come and go. God lasts.
He’s Creator of all you can see or imagine.
He doesn’t get tired out, doesn’t pause to catch his breath.
And he knows everything, inside and out.
He energizes those who get tired,
gives fresh strength to dropouts.
For even young people tire and drop out,
young folk in their prime stumble and fall.
But those who wait upon GOD get fresh strength.
They spread their wings and soar like eagles,
They run and don’t get tired,
they walk and don’t lag behind.
Eugene H. Peterson, The Message: The Bible in Contemporary Language (Colorado Springs, CO: NavPress, 2005), Is 40:27–31.