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Archive for May, 2006


May 10


Bondage versus Liberty


Therefore, since we have such hope, we use great boldness of speech — unlike Moses, who put a veil over his face so that the children of Israel could not look steadily at the end of what was passing away. (2Co_3:12-13)


Living by the old covenant of law requires a “performance based life,” which depends upon man’s sufficiency. This produces spiritual bondage. Living by the new covenant of grace provides a “relationship based life,” which depends upon God’s sufficiency. This results in spiritual liberty.


Moses was a great servant of the Lord. He is a wonderful example to us in many ways. However, in our present verses, we see him living by His own sufficiency, thereby exemplifying life under the law. As Moses met with the Lord for the giving of the law, his face would shine. For the benefit of the people, he would place a veil over this shining glory: “Moses, who put a veil over his face.” When this glory began to fade away (as it was designed to do), Moses kept the veil on “so that the children of Israel could not look steadily at the end of what was passing away.” In this, Moses was in a caught in the bondage of secrecy. He did not want others to see the glory fade. He wanted others to think that his face was still aglow.


All of us are tempted at times to hide behind a veil of secrecy. This is particularly the case when we are trusting in our own sufficiency. When drawing upon our insufficient resources, we generally sense that we are not doing as well as we should be: “Not that we are sufficient of ourselves” (2Co_3:5). So, we try to hide it. We want others to think that our spiritual walk is more glorious than it actually is. So we put on veils of pretense, self-righteousness, or self-justification. The remedy for this bondage of secrecy is living by new covenant grace.


We are new covenant servants: “God, who also made us sufficient as ministers [i.e., servants] of the new covenant” (2Co_3:5-6). God makes us sufficient by sharing His fully adequate resources with us. “Our sufficiency is from God” (2Co_3:5). This is our effective hope for avoiding the bondage of secrecy that overtook Moses. “Therefore, since we have such hope, we use great boldness of speech — unlike Moses.” Those who live by the grace of God have such great hope. Their expectations are anchored in the Lord, not in self. Thus, they can be bold, open, and candid. If they fail, they humbly confess their insufficiency. If they succeed, they openly credit His adequacy.


Lord, You are my only hope and my sufficiency. You alone can liberate me from the bondage that results from trusting in myself. So, in line with Your word, I again look to You to supply daily what I need for godly living, Amen.


 


This and many other devotionals, bible versions, commentaries, maps, etc., can be downloaded for free at http://www.e-sword.net/ . This is such an excellent program, and if you spend any time at all on the computer , you’ll find it to be a great way to get your spiritual vitamins in each day. It allows you to keep a journal, write your own commentaries, keep a prayer reminder, and a ton of other stuff.


Theresa update: she’s not on the pain killer this morning, but it still hurts to smile and laugh. Keep her in your prayers… she’s heard so many horror stories from folks that have had their wisdom teeth out that now she’s concerned she’ll lose the clots and get “dry sockets”. Whatever that is . I’m hoping today can be a Science-at-least day, because I don’t want to lose the momentum Emily Bemily got us going on when she suggested we shorten last module up to one week. We only have two weeks left — woohoo!! And of course, we want to do piano since she plays in a few Wednesdays… and Math, since we test in two weeks … and… and…and…  Hope springs eternal in the Mommy breast. (paraphrase from a poem by Alexander Pope)


Thanks for your prayers.


 

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Theresa is recovering nicely — thank you to everyone who prayed, called, sent emails, and forwarded emails (you know who you are  ). The actual surgery was only 15 minutes or so, the recovery was very short, and she didn’t panic at the onset of the anesthesia, as she had feared she might. She has been in junk food heaven with a double-ground vanilla frap at Starbux right afterward, a chocolate pudding, a strawberry jello, a mashed banana with cream, and a “mousse” yogurt whip all the rest of today. Not her normal diet, but it makes her smile, however painfully .  Me, of course, I was having convulsions just buying the stuff (do you know what’s in snack pack pudding ??? Today’s spelling lesson — p…o…i… — Emily, you can finish it up for us . ) We got her teeth intact. Don’t be surprised if you see them hanging around her neck or something.


Anyway, it’s late and I’m old. Just wanted to thank all of you for your prayers. The Lord heard and answered. In my distress I called upon the LORD, and cried unto my God: he heard my voice out of his temple, and my cry came before him, even into his ears.” (Psalm 18:6)

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