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Psalm 78
. . . we will tell the next generation the praiseworthy deeds of the LORD, his power, and the wonders he has done. .
so the next generation would know them . . . and they in turn would tell their children.
Then they would put their trust in God and would not forget his deeds but would keep his commands.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Morning Meditations

Thus says the LORD: 'Let not the wise man boast in his wisdom, let not the mighty man boast in his might, let not the rich man boast in his riches, but let him who boasts boast in this, that he understands and knows me, that I am the LORD who practices steadfast love, justice, and righteousness in the earth. For in these things I delight,' declares the LORD.(1)
The Psalmist speaks of the LORD over and over as being "my portion." A puzzling description until one realizes that for Israel, their "portion" was another way of describing their inheritance--the "portion" of the total land inheritance that was given to them. Several chapters of Joshua describe the initial division of the Promised Land for each family tribe of Israel. Their portion of Canaan was their inheritance. (See Joshua 13-19.)

This brings two things to mind. First, I need to understand that the LORD is more precious to me than a rich inheritance--a legacy of wealth that I did not earn!

Second, I cannot congratulate myself for anything. A portion is unearned. It is a free gift. I can only boast that the LORD has given Himself to me as my portion. I love the verses from Jeremiah (above) when God rebuked Israel for taking so much pride in their wisdom, might, and riches and then tells them what their true source of pride should be. At the time, Israel was in shambles, suffering deeply for their sin. They were tasting the bitter truth that their wisdom was foolishness, their might was not their own, and their riches were fleeting. It was all gone, but the LORD told Jeremiah, boast that you know Me.

I imagine these verses from Jeremiah deeply affected Paul, for he refers to them twice.
God chose what is low and despised in the world, even things that are not, to bring to nothing things that are, so that no human being might boast in the presence of God. He is the source of your life in Christ Jesus, whom God made our wisdom and our righteousness and sanctification and redemption. Therefore, as it is written, 'Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord.'(2)

'Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord.' For it is not the one who commends himself who is approved, but the one whom the Lord commends.(3)
(1) Jeremiah 9:23-24
(2) 1 Corinthians 1:28-31
(3) 2 Corinthians 10:17-18

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