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Dec 4, 2018

JOEL 2:28-3:
An attack by an army of locusts must be so frightening! What descriptions! And even worse when God is bringing the attack as an act of judgement. Yet Joel offers hope. He encourages the people to come back to God and beg for the Lord’s help. We will pick up today re-reading the famous part of Joel 2.

ISAIAH 44b:
In the first part of this chapter God said:

Is. 44:3 NLT For I will pour out water to quench your thirst
and to irrigate your parched fields.
And I will pour out my Spirit on your descendants,
and my blessing on your children.
4 They will thrive like watered grass,
like willows on a riverbank.
5 Some will proudly claim, ‘I belong to the LORD.’
Others will say, ‘I am a descendant of Jacob.’

Then God gave a lecture on the futility of idols. I love the irony in the verses we read today:

Is. 44:19 NLT The person who made the idol never stops to reflect,
“Why, it’s just a block of wood!

2TIMOTHY 3:
We heard the wonderful encouragements to Timothy in chapter 2. Note that Paul did not explain everything to Timothy, but invited him to ponder what he had said. I urge all of us to similarly ponder and spend time meditating on what Paul said.

Note what Paul says about God’s Word in contrast to his being in chains: “The word of God cannot be chained.” Yay, God! May your Word accomplish what you have sent it to do!

GNT Translation notes:
2Tim. 3:8 As Jannes and Jambres were opposed to Moses, so also these people are opposed to the truth—people whose minds do not function and [what they believe doesn’t even make sense//who are failures in the faith].
10  But you have followed my teaching, my conduct, and my purpose in life; you have observed [how I believe//my faith], my patience, my love, my endurance,
15 and you remember that ever since you were a child, you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to give you the wisdom that leads to salvation through [believing//faith] in Christ Jesus.

NLT Translation note:
2Tim. 3:15 You have been taught the holy Scriptures from childhood, and they have given you the wisdom to receive the salvation that comes by [believing/trusting] in Christ Jesus.