But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. (Jas 1:22)
In this information-rich world, we might have noticed that our time for God and focus on God, particularly in Bible study or meditating God’s word have been dwindling. Thus, the prerequisite in being a doer of God’s word is to strengthen our spiritual foundation by making Bible study a priority in our lives (Jn 1:1; Mk 4:20). If we continue to do this on a daily basis, gradually Bible study becomes a habitual activity likened to taking a shower, brushing teeth, eating and drinking, etc.
Let those who delight in my righteousness shout for joy and be glad and say evermore, “Great is the LORD, who delights in the welfare of his servant!” (Ps 35:27, ESV)
The Hebrew word for welfare in this verse, shalom, also refers to completeness, peace, tranquility, and contentment. Many seek after these things in life, and we often think that it is for our own good. But it turns out that God is also delighted when we are well and at peace.
Who is this who darkens counsel by words without knowledge? (Job 38:2)
Job was an upright man who feared God and shunned evil. God himself said that there was none like Job on the earth, who was blameless in his ways (Job 1:8). However, being blameless in one’s ways does not mean that one fully knows the Lord.
But against none of the children of Israel shall a dog move its tongue, against man or beast, that you may know that the Lord does make a difference between the Egyptians and Israel. (Exodus 11:7)
During the last of the ten plagues, Moses spoke boldly against Pharoah: the Lord will go into the midst of Egypt and kill all the firstborn in the land of Egypt. This plague was the climax to the story of God’s deliverance of His people, after the Egyptians had undergone lengthy suffering and before Pharoah finally cast the Israelites out of his land in devastation from the loss of his firstborn. At the end, the Lord had gained victory and displayed His majestic powers. The Lord had shown that He does make a difference between the Egyptians and those who He calls His own.
As we read Joseph’s story again, you may realize as you get older that our difficulties are nothing compared to what he went through. But before we get to the turning point of maturity, most of us feel that what we go through is bad, something that no one will understand. But what we have in common with Joseph is that we are all God’s children. If we reflect on Joseph’s life difficulties, we realize God must understand our difficulties and will provide a way out for us in order to overcome. As Joseph’s life was in God’s hand and His salvation plan, so are our lives, are they not?