Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | September 22, 2019

“For such is God, Our God forever and ever; He will guide us until death.”

Today’s devotion comes from Acts 7:1-8.

“The high priest said, “Are these things so?”

And he said, “Hear me, brethren and fathers!  The God of glory appeared to our father Abraham when he was in Mesopotamia, before he lived in Haran, and said to him, ‘LEAVE YOUR COUNTRY AND YOUR RELATIVES, AND COME INTO THE LAND THAT I WILL SHOW YOU.’  Then he left the land of the Chaldeans and settled in Haran.  From there, after his father died, God had him move to this country in which you are now living.  But He gave him no inheritance in it, not even a foot of ground, and yet, even when he had no child, He promised that HE WOULD GIVE IT TO HIM AS A POSSESSION, AND TO HIS DESCENDANTS AFTER HIM.  But God spoke to this effect, that his DESCENDANTS WOULD BE ALIENS IN A FOREIGN LAND,AND THEY WOULD BE ENSLAVED AND MISTREATED FOR FOUR HUNDRED YEARS.  ‘AND WHATEVER NATION TO WHICH THEY WILL BE IN BONDAGE I MYSELF WILL JUDGE,’ said God, ‘AND AFTER THAT THEY WILL COME OUT AND SERVE ME IN THIS PLACE.’  And He gave him the covenant of circumcision;  and so Abraham became the father of Isaac, and circumcised him on the eighth day;  and Isaac became the father of Jacob, and Jacob of the twelve patriarchs.”  Acts 7:1-8.

——————

Some Scriptures speak more plainly in summaries such as “God is sovereign.”, “God guides us.”, “God protects us.”, and “God blesses us.”.

But, other Scriptures, like today’s Scripture, speak in detailed quotes of God and facts.  With today’s Scripture, the reader needs to meditate more on the Scripture to determine, through God’s grace enlightening him, what God is doing and how that Scripture could be applied to him or her, the reader.

But, there is hope!

“But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you.”  John 14:16.

“But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth;  for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak;  and He will disclose to you what is to come.”  John 16:13.

In today’s Scripture, we first notice that God took the initiative and appeared to Abraham.  Verse 2.  Nothing was stated in today’s Scripture that Abraham was seeking God or asking God what to do.

Other doctrine portray God as the great Reactor to what man does.

But, Reformed Doctrine shows that Scripture teaches that God is the great Initiator. 

“Thus says the LORD, “Let not a wise man boast of his wisdom, and let not the mighty man boast of his might, let not a rich man boast of his riches;  but let him who boasts boast of this, that he understands and knows Me, that I am the LORD who exercises lovingkindness, justice and righteousness on earth;  for I delight in these things,” declares the LORD.”  Jeremiah 9:23-24.

Second, we notice that when God guides us, He does what is necessary to get the job done.  In today’s Scripture, we see that at one time God plainly told Abraham what to do.  Verse 3.  At another time, we see that God “had him move”.  Verse 4.  We do not know how God had him move;  maybe it was through events.  But, in any event, God got the job of His guidance done.

For us today in our times, God may guide us through something very subtle such as something that we read in Scripture or something that we hear in a sermon or teaching or something more informal from a trusted family member or friend.  But, other times, God will much more forcefully guide us such as through events to guide us.  We commonly say that “God shuts a door” or “God opens a door” in describing God’s guidance by more forceful events.

Third, we notice that God does not guide us always as we may predict or guess or want.  Although we naturally prefer to control how God guides us, God guides us how He pleases, sometimes through trials, troubles, and tribulations like we see in today’s Scripture that God guided Israel through four hundred years of slavery.  Verse 6.

Before our emotions get out of control, and we bristle against such guidance by God and we rebel, let us always trust God to get the job of His guidance done.  Although we may think that we could never endure through such four hundred years of slavery or other trial, trouble, or tribulation, Scripture is full of assurances that God will get us through it.

“Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I fear no evil, for You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.”  Psalm 23:4.

“Many are the afflictions of the righteous,
But the LORD delivers him out of them all.”  Psalm 34:19.

“And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.”  Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me.”  2 Corinthians 12:9.

“… “I WILL NEVER DESERT YOU, NOR WILL I EVER FORSAKE YOU,”  Hebrew 13:5.

“For such is God,
Our God forever and ever;
He will guide us until death.”  Psalm 48:14.


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