"This reading is based on Psalm 79 read in accordance with the Revived by His Word initiative of the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists)
"Come;" the Lord's Invitation Isn't it good to know that even if we're deserving of the unpleasant things we may be experiencing, we don't have to stay in a little corner and quietly suffer through our punishment; there's always the opportunity to renegotiate our situation with God - at least for now! "Come now, and let us reason together... though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool," is the Lord's invitation to us; He so wants to deliver us!.
Death Makes no Difference Sometimes though,some situations may seem to be taking forever to be over and it appears that God has forgotten us. Like Asaph we may want to ask, "How long, Lord? Will You be angry forever? Will Your jealousy burn like fire" Ps 79: 5. But with the right attitude (penitent and repentant), and the positive indications that we have learned our lessons, we can rest assured that God will only be too anxious to release us. And can we appreciate that sometimes death is the way out ("Preserve those who are appointed to die," verse 11)? This passage could be a call to keep them from dying, or to keep them in dying. With God death really makes no difference in the bigger scheme of things.
A Matter of Honour And not to suggest that He's in this simply for Himself, but God has another very good reason to want to listen to our pleas for help: as a declared God of mercy, grace, longsuffering, goodness and truth (Ex. 34: 6) His name is on the line. Asaph draws on this fact, not so much to convince God, but to boost his own confidence in his plea for help. Asaph says in verse 9, "Help us, O God of our salvation, FOR THE GLORY OF YOUR NAME; and deliver us, and provide atonement for our sins, FOR YOUR NAMES' SAKE!" For God it then becomes a matter of honour that He hears our prayers.
Prayer of Commitment
Father in Heaven, we have not been altogether faithful as we should, and there is no good reason why. Consequently, we are not where we should be. And unfortunately also, some of us are contented in the prisions of an illicit relationship, an ostentatious lifestyle, a morally unsound job situation that has us violating rules of ethics and other biblical truths - including the Sabbath. Lord, please put it within us to want to be where You want us to be, to do the things You want us to do, to be the people You want us to be. All this and more we ask in the mighty name of Jesus, amen.
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