July 17

Ezekiel 40-44, Psalm 43

A few years ago, while reading through this portion of Ezekiel, I approached Pastor Lloyd after service with a number of questions concerning why the temple sacrifices were being done again when Jesus was our final sacrifice.  I had a few other questions also concerning the Levites, the different priests, etc.  He gave me a couple of his thoughts, but concluded by saying he and for that matter others were only speculating, that we probably won't fully understand this until we are there one day.  His answer was wonderful, it was honest, sincere, and at the same time freeing.  We live our lives thinking if we just study a little harder we will have the answers to ours and others questions.  This unfortunately can create that work centered mentality that we need to work harder. It also can prevent many of us from sharing for fear of not having all of the answers.  But, we need to remember He is God and all knowing, we are not.

In 1 Corinthians 13:12, Paul says, "For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face.  Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known."  When two of Jesus' disciples were walking along the road to Emmaus and did not recognize Jesus after His Resurrection and were confused about what had just transpired in Jerusalem surrounding His death, we read in Luke 24:27, "And beginning at Moses and all the Prophets, He expounded to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself."  If we faithfully approach Scripture on a daily basis, He will continue to reveal to us what He knows we need.  Though if we stay close to Him we will continue to grow, we need to remember Paul's words in Romans 11:33-36, "Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and the knowledge of God!  How unsearchable are His judgments and His ways past finding out!  "For who has known the mind of the Lord?  Or who has become His counselor?  Or who has first given to Him And it shall be repaid to him?"  For of Him and through Him and to Him are all things, to whom be glory forever. Amen."

When we were given the Great Commission in Matthew 28:18-20, this wasn't a message to Bible scholars only.  Jesus didn't tell his disciples that once you finish this or that program teaching you how to effectively share your faith you would then be able to obey His command.  No, His bride is a very diverse crowd in terms of ethnicity, profession, education,  past experiences, years in the faith, etc.  This is our asset in terms of reaching others for Jesus.  The freeing comment that my Pastor, Lloyd Pulley, is the same thing that should free all of us.  We are to step out in faith knowing that we will not have all the answers, but in obedience to our Savior and our realization of just what a desperate situation the world is in.  If we don't know an answer, there is nothing wrong with saying, "I don't know but I'll look it up and get back to you".  Though we should all be diligent students of Scripture, we should never forget the comforting words of Jesus when He said, "But when they deliver you up, do not worry about how or what you should speak.  For it will be given to you in that hour what you should speak; for it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father who speaks in you." (Matthew 10:19-20)

Messages from Pastor Lloyd Pulley:

Marj Lancaster