When God was finished with creation he looked at it and it was very good. One should note that “very good” in God’s eyes is indeed – very good. So it went on for a while like this, until one day God gave another look to creation, but this time the picture was different. This time the Lord did not rejoice, but instead “he was grieved that he had made man on the earth, and his heart was filled with pain” (Genesis 6:6, NIV). He decided to wipe away what he had made, but Noah found favor in His eyes. So he spared him. This went on for a while until one other day the Lord said to Noah and his sons “I establish my covenant with you: Never again will all life be cut off by the waters of a flood; never again will there be a flood to destroy the earth” (Genesis 9:11, NIV).
I cannot help but wonder what went through God’s “mind” between the time of completing creation and the events of Genesis 6. Even more – what changed from Genesis 6 to Genesis 9? There’s little we can know about it, besides that God set off on a mission – a mission that’s one of a kind.
See, when, let’s say your TV breaks down and you want to continue watching TV – you have two options. Either repair it or get a new one, the latter being the more convenient, easier one. While the flood was God’s way of starting all over again – more convenient and certainly quicker, his covenant with Noah and later on with many others is rather astonishing. He basically said “I won’t get rid of you, but will do whatever it takes to fix you up – make you look good again; as good as you were when I first looked at you.” This might also seem easy until you grasp the scale of the repair that needed to be done. Consequentially, that decision didn’t come at no expense for God. The toll was the death and resurrection of His Son – a rather high price, but as I said – a lot needed fixing.
Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with God’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality (Romans 12:11-13, NIV).
Paul’s letter to the church in Rome from the first century is often limited to a well written lesson on systematic theology. This, however, is the very reason due to which most of the letter’s today’s readers miss seeing the practical guides which make up the message. After all, Romans is a letter by a caring spiritual father to his children in the faith. Thus, after clarifying for his brothers and sisters in Christ the basics of the Christian faith Paul does not forget to also remind them how to show this faith through practice in their lives. The whole chapter 12, as well as much of the following ones, is a description of how the life of a believer ought to be like. So, before you continue reading this devotional, please, do read the whole chapter 12 of Romans (you may also read till the end of the letter).
It does not come by surprise that in the middle of this description one finds the phrase “faithful in prayer.” Multiple times already we have turned our attention to how seriously Paul takes prayer. In most Bibles there is two references attached to this phrase. These two other passages confirm the apostle’s teaching. read more