Thursday, April 30, 2009

To obey is better than sacrifice

4 am messages are always special and sufficient, without to0 much comment.
It began, and ended with the Word of God. And as I write, I recall a passage that I was led to read earlier this week:

All men are like grass
And all their glory is like the flowers of the field;
the grass withers and the flowers fall,
but the word of the Lord stands forever.
1 Peter 1:24-25 NIV

Tonight as the Lord woke me up at 4 am, I remembered Samuel's response to another call, and on my way the that book in the Bible, I came across a verse ( and story) from the book of Judges:

" The Lord said to Gideon, " you have too many men for me to deliver Median into your hands. In order that Israel may not boast against me that her own strength has saved her announce now to the people............"
Judges 7:3-3 NIV

And this one too:

" Then Eli said, " He is the Lord; let him do what is good in his eyes".
1 Samuel 3:18. NIV

Then the Lord led me to read the second lesson appointed to be read all Anglican churches this Sunday:

"On their release Peter and john went back to their own people and reported all that the chief priests and elders had said to them. When they heard this they raised their voices together in prayer to God. " Sovereign Lord", they said, " you made the heaven and the earth and the sea and everything in them. You spoke by the Holy Spirit through the mouth of our father David:

' Why do nations rage
and the people plot in vain?
The kings of the earth take their stand
and the rulers gather together
against the Lord
and against his Anointed One.'

Indeed Herod and Pontius Pilate met together with the Gentiles and the people of Israel in this city to conspire against your holy servant Jesus, whom you anointed. They did what your power and will had decided beforehand should happen. Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness. Stretch our hand to heal and perform miraculous signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus.
After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly."
Acts 4:23-31 NIV

O Holy One of Israel we pray that you may enable your people to speak your Word with great boldness in this city where they have conspired against the Body of Christ - the church - to make her seem irrelevant, and of little importance in the life of the nation,; O Lord where they have conspired to temp her take her eyes from the Cross of her Saviour; O God where they have conspired to temp her to forget that she has been given a Spirit, not of timidity, but of power, of love and of self-discipline. O God stretch out your hand over this city to heal and perform miraculous signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus.