Daily Devotion Tuesday July 25, 2017
“Seek the LORD and live, or he will sweep through the tribes of Joseph like a fire; it will devour them, and Bethel will have no one to quench it.”
Throughout the Bible; both in the Old and New Testaments runs the theme of God’s Grace which is usually seen or implied in God’s call to mankind to turn to him and live. Grace is an unmerited favour which God bestows on all mankind—an opportunity for mankind to be restored to a relationship with God. God showed his grace during the time when Uzziah and Jeroboam were kings in Judah and Israel respectively by an open invitation to the Israelites through prophet Amos. Amos invited the people to:
“Seek the LORD and live, or he [the LORD] will sweep through the tribes of Joseph like a fire; it will devour them, and Bethel will have no one to quench it” (Amos 5:6).
During the reign of the two kings Uzziah and Jeroboam, Judah and Israel respectively were characterised by godlessness. Although the former did a lot of reforms and fortified Jerusalem, he later became proud which led to his downfall. Uzziah “was unfaithful to the LORD his God, and entered the temple of the LORD to burn incense on the altar of incense” (2 Chronicles 26:16). The king crossed the lines, he did what the LORD reserved for the priests, he was straightaway stricken by leprosy and died a leper. Prophet Amos’ volume is full of pronouncement of doom and call to repentance, this shows how spiritually wanting his contemporaries were.
Are we any better now than Judah and Israel then? We aren’t. I will never run short of space to always mention that “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). For this reason, we must Seek the LORD and live, if we don’t seek him, then we won’t live because the “wage of sin is death” (Romans 6:23). God has shown his love and grace to us in Christ Jesus; “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16).
Christ is God’s gift of Grace, when we accept him—confess Him our Lord and believe that he was raised from the dead—we will be saved from the penalty of sin (Romans 10:9-10) and live. God has taken the initiative to restore mankind back to Himself, he has done what it takes to have us reconciled to him. It is now up to us to either accept God’s Grace revealed to us in Christ or to reject it and remain condemned.
“God has taken the initiative to restore mankind back to Himself, he has done what it takes to have us reconciled to him. It is now up to us to either accept God’s Grace revealed to us in Christ or to reject it and remain condemned.”
Amos’ invitation to Seek the LORD and Live is an all-time invitation to all mankind everywhere. John Piper explains that to seek the Lord means “seeking his presence. “Presence” is a common translation of the Hebrew word “face.” Literally, we are to seek his “face.” But this is the Hebraic way of having access to God. To be before his face is to be in his presence.” Piper further writes that: “The seeking is the conscious effort to get through the natural means to God himself — to constantly set our minds toward God in all our experiences, to direct our minds and hearts toward him through the means of his revelation.”
Those who seek the Lord will find him—they will rest in him and live. Those who do not seek the Lord are doomed for eternal damnation, for they will receive the full wage of sin which is an eternal separation from God – also called the second death (Rev. 21:8). I therefore implore you to Seek the LORD and Live. Amen! Rev. J
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Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture Quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version (NIV) 2011.
Rev. Julius Izza Tabi is the founding Director of this online New Dawn Ministries. He holds a Master of Philosophy in Religion, Society and Global Issues from the Norwegian School of Theology. Julius also is a pastor in the Anglican Diocese of Ma’di and West Nile of the Church of Uganda who believes that God’s timeless truth of salvation must be preached to all Nations. Help Donate here to support the New Dawn Ministries. You can also support this ministry by purchasing Julius’ popular books Triumphing Over Odds and Suffering and Pain? from Amazon. Thank you.