1 Chronicles 15:1-16:36, Romans 1:18-32, Psalms 10:1-15, Proverbs 19:6-7
Today is the 13th day of July welcome to the Daily Audio Bible I’m Brian it’s great to be here with you today as we dive in…dive into a new work week and swim our way through together. And if that’s the metaphor we’re gonna use then I’m glad I’m not swimming alone. I’m glad we’re in this together. So, this week we’re reading from the Lexham English Bible and continuing our journey through the book of first Chronicles and continuing our journey through the life of David. So, today first Chronicles chapters…chapter 15 verse 1 through 16 verse 36.
Okay. So, we’re just getting started in the book of Romans, which also means we’re just getting started in Paul’s letters. And, so, like we’r righgt at the very beginning and we gotta kinda get his tone and get where he’s coming from. And this letter of Romans is brilliant. Like, this is the basis for so much of the theological understandings that we have as Christians. And it’s…it’s dense. Like, it’s very packed. And, so, lot of words and a lot of long sentences. So, what…what are we saying today or what was Paul saying in the portion of the letter that we read today? Well, so, we got started yesterday and…and Paul was like right out of the gate making one point really clear, that God is willing to make us right or righteous in His sight. He’s willing to do that, but the…the way that this can be accomplished is completely through faith. I guess we could just stop there and talk for a few days or weeks or months or years because we’re essentially being told that once we believe we have to live into this through faith. Like when will we ever actually feel like we are righteous before God because of our actions, not because of Jesus work? Like, when will we ever feel like we have a right to be in God’s presence because we are that good? We, on our own, are holy and we have become exalted to the point that we can be in God’s presence and He doesn’t have to like…He doesn’t have to make us righteous, we simply are on our own, like when will that ever happen? Never…never…but we are that holy and we are that righteous to be so bold as to enter the presence of the most-high God through faith. This is so central to Paul. We kinda need to understand where he’s coming from here as we enter into what he’s writing. And, so, that’s what he’s saying, and he begins to flash that out today by simply saying, “there’s no excuse. It’s not God’s fault for our confusion. It’s not God’s fault that we’re not aware of His presence. It’s not God’s fault that we can’t find where He is. Just look around you.” And he tells us, “God gave us reason, volition, essentially gave us the ability to make choices and that those choices have been allowed to matter, but we took those choices and essentially traded the truth for a lie. And, so we began to worship all kinds of things and get into all kinds of trouble and move into all kinds of directions that humans being…human beings were not intended to be involved in, including in…including giving our hearts in worship to that which is false, which is idolatry.” And, so, you stir all of that up together for a couple centuries or a couple millennia and you find like confusion is a rampant. Nobody knows anything anymore, which according to Paul just leads to unrighteousness, fundamentally. Unrighteousness, wickedness, greediness, malice, envy, murder, strife, deceit, malevolence, gossip, slander, hatred of God, insolence, arrogance, and on and on. And we probably could rightly say, “yeah, that’s kind of the world I think I might be living in too. Like that’s kinda what I see when I look around. There’s a lot of this.” So, we, on the one hand, we can go “well, nothing’s changed in the last couple of thousand years” or we can understand like this is our deep struggle. Paul’s saying God has always been here. He’s been calling out in every way imaginable, and we’ve been ignoring that and making choices without Him individually and collectively as the human race. And, so, here we are, and it’s a bit bleak. And, so, he's…he’s laying out all out not to say, “the world has gone mad and everything is upside down and we need to hunker down and hide out.” Like, he’s not saying that. He’s laying this all out to bring us to what we will experience in the coming days and that is this; it doesn’t have be this way. We’re choosing for it to be this way. If we could understand that we have been made righteous before God. If we could accept that reality about ourselves through faith the things that we are struggling for, the people that we are struggling against, it loses its potency. We’re no longer struggling to eke out some sort of identity that can make us right in our own eyes. Rather, we come to the end of ourselves understanding that the choices that we’ve made have individually and collectively gotten us here. Somethings got to change. And for Paul it’s that if we could open our eyes and see through faith what is really going on it would fundamentally and radically transform us from within, which would then compel us to change the way that we live and have our being in this world, which would effectively change things all around us. And if you get that going, you get that momentum going then…well then, we’re working towards, “on earth as it is in heaven.” And, so, we have a lot of ground to cover in the days ahead in the book of Romans and…and…and on through the letters of Paul. But this is where we are now. Paul is laying out the fact that things are pretty messed up, have been pretty messed up but they don’t have to stay that way.
Father, we invite you into that. We welcome you into that. We open our hearts. We want it. We’re exhausted. Come Holy Spirit, bring us to the end of ourselves as painful as that might be, that we might see through the eyes of faith what is really going on here and is really possible. Come Jesus we pray. In your mighty name, we ask. Amen.
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I…I started mentioning Heart, a contemplative journey, a project that released back on the day of the long walk. And it…it…it’s available now and if you haven’t had a chance to get that is…it is a true journey of the heart. It is a true journey into the emotions that we feel…that we’ve been feeling throughout all the craziness going on, just kind of guides us. It’s something that has formed over a lot of time, actually over several years for me. And the prayers are prayers that just kind of…they came from my own heart. They were the prayers I was praying about the things I was feeling and just realizing I’m not alone. I can’t be alone. This is…this is what we feel. And to try to give language to help us enter into those places instead of just kind of stamping them down and compartmentalizing them and hiding them. Instead, to embrace what we’re actually feeling and welcome Jesus into those places. And, so, that is available. It was a shock. It was a shock to watch that album debut number one. I was not thinking that but now that we’re almost a couple weeks from there I see the feedback I’m getting that it has struck a nerve. It is something that was needed for…for a time like this. And, so…so, yeah, that is available. You can get it from the iTunes store or the Google Play store. If you’re looking for it like on Apple music, like it’s not stream…you can’t stream it, you have to purchase the album. There’s a reason because there’s 20 tracks in 10 of them are prayers, and there’s no way to exclude, like there’s no way to exclude them. And that would mean that disembodied prayers that are completely out of context altogether…just completely out of context of the…of the of the whole process that…that Heart is could…it’s just weird. And, so, if you go you have to go the iTunes store to get it as many, many, many, many, many, many of you found out over the last few weeks. But it is available and it’s not just for the long walk, although it’s such a beautiful, beautiful thing for the long walk. It is for the long walk of life, and something that I go back into even though I…I…I’ve heard it a lot. It takes me into a place that…I don’t know…it centers me. It reminds me that, although I can get tossed around on my emotions, like we all can, there’s an anchor. And we can continue to be tossed around if we don’t hang on to the anchor. And…and it…it’s just so helpful to be reminded and to have the words. And, so, check that out.
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And that’s it for today. I’m Brian I love you and I’ll be waiting for you here tomorrow.