Category Archives: Daily Manna
Unto the upright, there arises light in the darkness. – Psalm 112:4
The lion’s den where Daniel spent his night was, in all probability, filled with the thick darkness of death; the dungeon where Paul and Silas prayed, and then sang songs praising the Lord was covered by the gloominess of the night; and the living prison where Jonah was confined, he was able to sing praises to God from there.
For a Christian, there is no light so beautiful and so precious as that thin line of light that arises when the righteous is groping in darkness. It is well for us to experience darkness, so that when the light appears, however dim it may, we will be enraptured by the light.
However, there much be a victory of faith in our soul. We much accept the darkness as it is deemed worthy to be allowed in our life, for the Most Sovereign Lord. We may not understand the purpose for which this darkness is allowed in our life, but we must trust in God – that He never does anything without a reason. As we trust in our God, a day-star arises in our heart, and slowly the day breaks for us. The Holy Spirit lights up a light within us, and though it may be mild, its radiance will dissipate the surrounding darkness in our life.
The wicked become a ransom for the righteous, and the unfaithful for the upright. – Proverbs 21:18
That is the decree of the Lord. Instead of the righteous people, wicked are given as ransom; for saving the upright, the unfaithful become the ransom. Knowing this divine decree, I look at the cross and the Saviour Who was crucified for my sake and I have no words to explain my amazement.
By no human standards, I am righteous; upright, no way. Wicked? Sure, the probability is pretty high. Unfaithful, now you are talking about me. Yet, when I look towards Calvary, I don’t see myself being given as ransom. Instead, I see something totally wrong… something very, very wrong.
There in the cross, was crucified my Lord, YHWH Tsidkenu, the LORD my Righteous, instead of me, the base sinner I am. I see the most upright Man ever lived on the cross, for this unfaithful creature I am. And, it all sounds so wrong. It is not justice. It is not the law that the Lord gave. How can this injustice be satisfactory to God our Father? How can I be called His son based on this injustice caused on the Most Holy One of Israel, the Son of God?
Oh… Jesus did not die for me; He died INSTEAD of me. The Most Holy God became sin and bore all my sins, as if He had committed them. And in that divine exchange, which I am still struggling to understand, He became everything that I am – wicked and unfaithful. And He gave His life as a Ransom for me, so I can become righteous and upright. How can I ever express my gratitude, other than living the life for which Jesus gave His life for me! Lord Jesus Christ, I love You.
In the previous blog, we saw that though we live in this world, we are seated with Jesus Christ in the heavenly realms; and that Ahab had Ben-Hadad come up into his chariot. Now let us consider these two things.
The first thing is that this was a decisive loss to Ben-Hadad. He had been losing battles after battles to Ahab, and in this battle alone, he lost 127,000 soldiers. It was a devastating loss. As a result of that, he had asked his arch-enemy Ahab for mercy. Mercy, he did receive and his life was reprieved; grace was added and he was called as the brother of his victor and shared his royal chariot.
Our flesh did fight with the Lord; our sinful nature waged a losing battle against the Most Holy God. The indwelling sin in us went to war with the Lord of the Hosts. And, we lost in a decisive manner. In humility, when we sought His mercy. We received His mercy and our sins are forgiven and our life is spared; but we also received grace after grace – abounding grace. Our Victor, our Lord Jesus Christ became our Redeemer and He is not ashamed to call Himself as our Brother; and we are seated in the heavenly realms with Him.
But how do you think Ben-Hadad would have behaved once he was in the chariot? Like a loser who lost everything? Like a mendicant who just begging for his life? Or like a king? Though he was a loser, and had to beg for his life, IMHO, when he was in the chariot, he would have behaved like a king. Not because he was a king, but because he was in the royal chariot, with the king. And that king just called him as his brother.
Yes, dear friend, we are with the King, the King of kings, Jesus Christ. We are seated with Him in the heavenly realms. Let us show our faith by our deeds. Let us behave in such a way that is worthy of being the siblings of the King of kings.
It does not matter where in the society we are. For all that matters, the society we live in may consider as trash. Our family may consider us as worthless; even in our eyes, we may be losers. Probably we are all that. But look up and see your Brother. Our families may be ashamed of us; they may not want to do anything with us. But there is Jesus Christ, the Saviour of the world, and He is not ashamed to be called as our Brother. Yes, He is calling you as His brother and His sister. HE is not ashamed of you. The LORD knows our failures; He knows our shortcomings. But in His grace, He has lifted us up, lifted up us higher than we deserve, higher than we can understand.
HE raises the poor out of the dust, and lifts the needy out of the ash heap, that He may seat him with with princes, with the princes of their people. (Psalm 113:7-8)
When Ben-Hadad rode that chariot with Ahab, he behaved in the manner that is worthy of a king; not because he was worthy of it, but because he was riding with the king in his royal chariot. Let us also behave in such a manner worthy of our calling (Ephesians 4:1). Let us leave everything of our old self behind us, let us behave in a manner worthy of being seated in the heavenly realms with our Lord and the King of kings, Jesus Christ.
The second thing is, though Ben-Hadad rode like a king in that chariot, he would have been mindful of the fact that all the adoration and honour that was being showered, rightfully belonged to Ahab. He knew that only Ahab deserved all the praise as a king. No matter how much adulation was shown to him on that day, he would have directed all that towards the king who spared his life and raised him up.
Let us never forget that, dear friend. No matter how high we are raised by our Lord Jesus Christ in this life, let us always make sure that He alone, He alone receives all the honour, glory and praise. For HE alone is worthy. Let us humble ourselves more and more, and let us glorify Him. Let us always point everyone to our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lamb that was slain, to His death and to His resurrection. Let pride be vanquished from our life and may the Lord alone reign in us. And may His Name alone be magnified. Amen.
I do not know how God could be made flesh, and never cease to be God; but He was.
I do not know how God could die, and yet never die; but He did.
And I do not know how Christ who knew no sin could be made sin, and yet never have sinned; but He was.
These things are mysteries beyond the reach of human comprehension. But they are facts of Divine revelation, to which we bow with adoration.
Let us specially beware of one great mistake. Many Christians think their own salvation is the first thing; their temporal life and prosperity, with the care of their family, the second; and what of time and interest is left may be devoted to fruit-bearing, to the saving of men. No wonder that in most cases very little time or interest can be found. No, Christian, the one object with which you have been made a member of Christ’s Body is that the Head may have you to carry out His saving work. The one object God had in making you a branch is that Christ may through you bring life to men. Your personal salvation, your business and care for your family, are entirely subordinate to this. Your first aim in life, your first aim every day, should be to know how Christ desires to carry out His purpose in you.
Now the men were watching closely to see whether any sign of mercy would come from him; and they quickly grasped at this word and said, “Your brother Ben-Hadad.” So he said, “Go, bring him.” Then Ben-Hadad came out to him; and he had him come up into the chariot. – 1 Kings 20:33 (NKJV)
Ahab was one of the most evil persons mentioned in the Bible. IMHO, only his wife Jezebel was worse than him. Yet, here Ahab did something out of character, it is astonishing.
Ben-Hadad, the king of Syria, had been a sworn enemy of Israel for generations. Ben-Hadad being the title of the king of Syria, there were many kings who were fighting constantly with Israel. To avoid their constant invasion, Ahab’s father, Omri, even shifted the capital to Samaria. And when such an enemy was defeated, Ahab showed kindness to him. Called Ben-Hadad as his brother and had him come up into the chariot, a honour indeed.
And we are worshipping the Holy One of Israel. Our Lord Jesus Christ has no traces of evil in Him. HE is all compassionate, merciful and gracious. Then imagine how He would treat those who run to Him for surrender.
Dear friend, the world you believed in may have betrayed you. You may feel defeated and on this day, wondering what you could do. Then, run to Jesus. The King of kings. HE will call you as His brother, His sister. And He will proclaim your name before our Father and His Father. And He will restore your soul. Come to Him. To the true King of Israel.
No lie is of Truth.
Reading the First Epistle by the beloved Apostle John always is a good idea for a Christian, whatever stage of growth I am in. It is like a checkpoint, that prompts myself to see if the claims I make about my growth in Christ actually is a fact or just a dream I am living in.
Today it is common to see Christians telling lies, “White Lies” is the term used to justify those lies. These are lies that harm no one, and probably makes the other person feel better. What is the harm in telling them?
No lie is of Truth, says the beloved Apostle. No lie. Absolutely no lie.
Of course, we live in a world filled with lies. How can I survive this world? Telling lies has become a way of life. You know, the survival of the fittest. But, wait, I am righteous because of Jesus Christ. You, as a Christian, have imputed righteousness because of our Lord and Teacher. And if you are righteous, then you have only one way of living. The righteous shall live by faith, not by lies.
The LORD sets the prisoners free. – Psalm 146:7
He has done it. Remember Joseph, Israel in Egypt, Manasseh, Jeremiah, Peter, and many others. He can do it still. He breaks the bars of brass with a word and snaps the fetters of iron with a look. He is doing it. In a thousand places troubled ones are coming forth to light and enlargement. Jesus still proclaims the opening of the prison to them that are bound. At this moment doors are flying back and fetters are dropping to the ground.
He will delight to set you free, dear friend, if at this time you are mourning because of sorrow, doubt, and fear. It will be joy to Jesus to give you liberty. It will give Him as great a pleasure to loose you as it will be a pleasure to you to be loosed. No, you have not to snap the iron hand: the LORD Himself will do it. Only trust Him, and He will be your Emancipator. Believe in Him in spite of the stone walls or the manacles of iron. Satan cannot hold you, sin cannot enchain you, even despair cannot bind you if you will now believe in the LORD Jesus, in the freeness of His grace, and the fullness of His power to save.
Defy the enemy, and let the word now before you be your song of deliverance; “Jehovah looseth the prisoners.” – Faith’s Check Book
The Lent season is upon us. People make so many resolutions. For me, I have decided to do something that is in my heart for so long. Psalm 148 talks about how everything that is created praises the Lord and hence, I have always wanted to know more about nature, various creatures and how amazing they have been created. While I dilly dally on these things, this Lent, I am going to spend sometime in just knowing about various amazing things that the LORD has created. Things that I never knew existed or did not know well. Both living and non-living. May His Name alone be glorified. Amen.