When my sister and I got Monopoly for Christmas one year, we played it every day of vacation. Each game took hours! At first it’s fun, but as the balance of wealth begins to lean to one side, it’s just a painful matter of time until the inevitable happens—if you’re losing. (And if you’re winning, it becomes rather boring.) Monopoly Deal, on the other hand (a new card game that we’re getting our granddaughter Emmeline for her birthday—don’t tell!), is a refreshing change that allows the balance to be upset very quickly and unexpectedly, giving hope to the underdog. And it takes only 15-20 minutes to play!
That’s what I thought of when I read Psalm 2 this morning.
Why do the nations gather together?
Why do their people devise useless plots?
Kings take their stands.
Rulers make plans together
against the LORD and against his Messiah by saying,
“Let’s break apart their chains
and shake off their ropes.”
The one enthroned in heaven laughs.
The Lord makes fun of them.
Then he speaks to them in his anger.
In his burning anger he terrifies them by saying,
“I have installed my own king on Zion, my holy mountain.”
(Psalm 2:1-6, God’s Word translation)
Powerful and ungodly nations and rulers may seem to have the upper hand now, but God is not worried. The balance of power will change dramatically and He will have the last laugh, punishing those who defy Him and installing the Lord Jesus as the eternal King over all. This is my comfort and my hope as I live as an alien on this earth, a subject of the Kingdom of God.
Maranatha! Come Lord Jesus!
Is fire good? It’s good under my cooking pot (I like a gas, rather than electric, stove) but not inside a pan of grease. It’s great to have as a campfire, but not loose in the forest. Fire is awesome, powerful, purifying, destructive, fearful, enlightening….
In Exodus, God appeared as fire several times. First to Moses in a burning bush (Exodus 3), commanding his attention and obedience as He commissioned him to go to Egypt to rescue his people. Imagine listening to a fire and even arguing with it, as Moses did!
The next time Moses encountered God as fire was when the Israelites left Egypt (13:21-22). God led them in the form of a pillar of cloud by day which turned into a pillar of fire at night. This fire guided them and gave them light, comfort and protection. God’s presence was actually visible to them.
Thirdly, God appeared as a fearsome, blazing fire that came down onto Mount Sinai (19:16-18) producing thick, black smoke and causing the whole mountain to quake. The terrified people were forbidden to come near, nor did they want to.
Is God a tame God whom we can control like a campfire or a flame under our cooking pans? As the writer of Hebrews says, “Our God is a consuming fire.” No, I can’t control God, nor would I want to. My prayer is that He will control me!
Here’s an article that has more on this topic: http://www.gotquestions.org/consuming-fire.html
Stay tuned for another post on the other side of God’s character which was revealed on top of that fiery mountain.
Our son was calming his fussy two-month-old daughter. As soon as he started singing “Jesus Loves Me,” she stopped crying and fixed her full attention on his face.
Then her daddy proceeded to tell her some important things:
Daddy: Hi Cadence. I love you!
Daddy: You’re my little girl. Yes you are. My precious little daughter.
Daddy: I’m your Daddy.
Baby: (cries more)
Daddy: (Cuddles her.) “You gotta calm down.” (Sings in her ear.)
C: He…he…he. (Lays her head on his shoulder.)
Okay now, replay the same scenario but with different actors! Now I am the baby and God is my Daddy.
He tells me I am His precious, beloved daughter. He sings to me, holds me in his arms, close to his heart, whispers in my ear, soothes my troubled soul.
And I? I don’t comprehend all His words but I do understand that I am loved and that He is strong and everything’s going to be okay.