“Come, let us return to the Lord. He has torn us to pieces but he will heal us; he has injured us but he will bind up our wounds. After two days he will revive us; on the third day he will restore us, that we may live in his presence; let us press on to acknowledge him. As surely as the sun rises, he will appear; he will come to us like the winter rains, like spring rains that water the earth.” (Hosea 6:1-3)
Ephraim had sinned against God by seeking healing for their sins, instead of God. God loves us all beloved and His chosen people continued to sin, but had failed to learn to take their repentance to Him. The call to restore our relationship to God acknowledges the discipline of God and His healing intentions. Rescue on the third day to the Hebrew was a complete number of days and in the New Testament became the waiting period for the resurrection. Revelation leads to knowledge of God’s forgiving grace and sure salvation. Israel’s judgment was from God and so would be her healing. God “has torn” that He may heal. His punishment is always disciplinary and remedial. The prophet provided His people language to use to express their repentance (or in this case “return”), their faith, and their hope . To “acknowledge God” means to follow the guidelines He has given for life. God is always waiting for us to return to Him, but He awaits for the right attitude, faith, and love towards Him in sincere repentance.
PRAYER FOR THE DAY:
Dear Abba, You give us Your commands, but also Your guidance on how we are seek You out when we fail You and fall into sin. You always look at our hearts to know if we are sincere or not, and if so, You show us Your grace and mercy to forgive us, so that our relationship with you is fully restored, not partially, but completely. Bless all those who are hurting in body, mind, and/or spirit, that they might set aside their issues and let You deal with them on their behalf, and accept their humble repentance of their sins Abba. For those in conflicts around the world with wars and natural disasters, pour out an anointing upon them all, that they too, might feel You near them and take comfort in that knowledge. Amen.
THOUGHT OF THE DAY:
“Because of Jesus’ death and resurrection, the Cross has become our ladder to heaven.”
“Therefore I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—-this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve God’s will is—-his good, pleasing and perfect will. For by the grace given I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you. Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.” (Romans 12:1-5)
Belief in Christ is not just a statement of faith, it is a statement of our becoming disciples of Christ in our lives, our work, and our living within family and the world around us. Paul based his appeal to sacrificial service on the mercy of God which every Christian has experienced. He did not command nor require; he appealed. He called for a living sacrifice. No longer can God be pleased with a slain beast or mere material things on the altar. He wants lives sacrificed on the altar Him. Moreover, He He called for a living sacrifice. No longer can God be pleased with a slain beast or mere material things on the altar and He doesn’t want us to die for Him. He want us to live for Him Holy living pleases God. Complete commitment to Christ on the part of those who make up the body of Christ brings true unity in the church. That unity will be experienced when members function as the Lord leads and realize that we really belong to Christ’s body and not to self. One cannot be a true Christian by themselves. Yes, some people are home bound, some are, isolated for a number of reasons, but the body of Christ can come to them. To live with Christ means we are to share Him with others, however we can. Paul said in 1st Corinthians 13:12, ‘When we die we immediately into God’s presence if we belong to Christ.” Therefore, we must live for Christ while are alive.
SECOND THOUGHT OF THE DAY:
“But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, He saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savor, so that having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life” (Titus 3:4-7)
To be given God’s Spirit is to receive a new life, a cleansing, and a new standing before God. The Spirits indwelling power changes foolish disobedient people dominated by hatred into kind, loving people with eternal hope. Salvation involves this washing and renewal, this transformation of life. Every person who truly receives Christ as Lord and Savior, receives the life changing Spirit. By coming to earth, Jesus revealed God’s love (Greek – philanithropia). His mercy is the motive behind our salvation. Jesus poured the Spirit upon us to give us hope of eternal life and to live morally pure lives.