Let’s pick up from yesterday with the “Golden Rule”. In Matthew 7 verse 12 we read, “Therefore, whatever you want men to do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets.” Growing up, my Mom would repeatedly tell us to “do unto others as we would have them do unto us. I knew the so-called “golden rule” was in the Bible but I didn’t have a clue where it was. All I knew was, as far as my Mom was concerned, it was a standard to live by. So, we basically grew up with the understanding of never doing anything to anyone that you wouldn’t want them to do to you.
This simple rule can keep one from a whole heap of trouble. Only God knows the grief we were spared by keep this simple command. Now let’s look at some of the things Father God says to us over and over again. One phrase we read repeatedly is “Do not be afraid.” In fact, it appears over 300 times in Scripture. Why? Do you think it’s something He might actually mean and expect us to listen to? How about this one in Philippians 4, “Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice!” God knows that each and every one of us has moments when we are dense and knuckled-headed and – just like our children – we therefore needed to be reminded to rejoice in the midst of trials. So far we’ve only looked at 2, “do not be afraid’ and “rejoice”. The place I hear God repeating Himself most often is in the Old Testament. Sometimes the repetition is almost redundant and boring, and yet, God took the time to inspire the writing of it. Again my nature asks why?! Why?! Why?! One writer explains it like this: “When God repeats Himself, He does it for a reason…to begin with repetition was common in ancient literature. This was the accepted way to tell a good story. Repetition builds suspense…repetition also reinforces the memory.” Relative to the building of the tabernacle in the Book of Exodus, the writer says, “What better way to learn about the layout of the tabernacle and the structure of our salvation than to read about it more than once…When God repeats something, He wants us to pay more attention, not less.”1
A few more to ponder are:
* Isaiah 40:1 “Comfort, yes, comfort My people!” Says your God.
* “I am the LORD, and there is no other; there is no God besides Me. I will gird you, though you have not known Me, that they may know from the rising of the sun to its setting that there is none besides Me. I am the LORD, and there is no other;” ~~ Isaiah 45:5-6
* O earth, earth, earth, hear the word of the LORD! ~~ Jeremiah 22:29
With this list too, I am sure I could go on, but I’ll leave that up to you to discover on your own. The last 2 I will leave you with are: I am the Lord Your God! And, I am Holy!
Stephanie Paul serves as part of the Addiction Recovery Team at America’s Keswick as Director of Women’s Addiction Ministry. She has been married for almost 30 years to Sesky Paul who is a graduate of the Colony of Mercy. Stephanie serves alongside him as Care Group leaders in their church. They have two grown children. Her single focus in ministry at Keswick is to image Christ in grace and truth to wounded and hurting women, encouraging them to make Jesus the truest Lover of their soul and the One in whom all hope lies.
1http://books.google.com/books?id=gXk8HK3y9hIC&pg=PT1080&lpg=PT1080&dq=when+God+repeats+himself&source Exodus: saved for God’s glory, Volume 2 By Philip Graham Ryken, R. Kent Hughes