Today’s readings.. (2 Samuel 22), (Jeremiah 25), (Romans 13), (Romans 14)

In today’s chapter of Paul’s letter to the Romans Paul is urging harmony between believers.  He asks, “Who are you to pass judgement on the servant of another?” [14 v.4]  He tells them “not to quarrel over opinions” [v.1].  He gives examples; the first is disagreements over observing specific days (v.6); the second is on what believers should, or should not allow themselves to eat (v.15).
Paul puts it this way, “It is good not to eat meat or drink wine or do anything that causes your brother to stumble.” [v.21]  Paul asks a significant question!  Why do you pass judgement on your brother? … Why do you despise your brother?”[v.10]  Beware, for a ‘superior’ attitude indicates the sin of pride and betrays our unwise feelings of self-importance. After asking these questions Paul makes a powerful point.
“For we will all stand before the judgement seat of God; for it is written, ‘As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God.’ So then each of us will give an account of him(her)self to God” . [v.10,11]  So, “at the judgement seat”  what will be seen as important?  One thing surely will be – how we have treated our fellow believers.  We need to meditate very deeply on what we “shall confess to God”?
In Ch. 13, which is also today’s reading, Paul wrote words which are so appropriate to this year of 2019; “The night is far gone; the day is at hand.  So then let us cast off the works of darkness and put on the armour of light. Let us walk properly as in the day time ..” [v.12,13]
How long before the night of human darkness is completed and the awesome presence of the return of the Son of God is revealed we do not know, but there is some comparison with the desperate message Jeremiah utters in today’s ch. 25.  It was “in the fourth year of Jehoiakim” [v.1] so, although Jeremiah did not know it, there were but 19 years to go before the destruction of their magnificent Temple and the end of their vain human lives.
But Jeremiah is caused to also utter prophesies which go beyond that terrible event – to ‘see’ the climax of human life on earth, he said, “… the LORD has an indictment against all the nations … Thus says the LORD of hosts; Behold disaster is going forth from nation to nation, and a great tempest is stirring from the farthest parts of the earth” [v.31,32].   It may not be long before we stand before the judgement seat of God … and every tongue shall confess…”  It will then be clear, from the Divine viewpoint, whether we have been wise or foolish servants – or servants at all!.

 

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