(This week’s Devotionals run Monday through Saturday)
Then the Lord spoke to Joshua, saying, “Speak to the sons of Israel, saying, ‘Designate the cities of refuge, of which I spoke to you through Moses, that the manslayer who kills any person unintentionally, without premeditation, may flee there, and they shall become your refuge from the avenger of blood. He shall flee to one of these cities, and shall stand at the entrance of the gate of the city and state his case in the hearing of the elders of that city; and they shall take him into the city to them and give him a place, so that he may dwell among them.’” Joshua 20:1-4
Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin. Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need. Hebrews 4:14-16
Today's thoughts from today's verses:
An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth, and a life for a life were all a part of the “exacting” mentality of Old Testament times. “Exactness” is the operational approach to life that is fostered by a culture of “law.” The cities of refuge in today’s Joshua passage helped to temper “law” with “grace.” We live in a more lenient culture but other parts of the world are steeped in the culture of “exactness.” Still, we can all relate to the drive toward “exactness” with those who have wronged us. Of course, our desire for “leniency” when the tables are reversed is undeniable. No matter what the balance is between exactness and leniency in how others treat us or how we treat them in this human world, there is a place of refuge available to us because of our “promised land” relationship with Christ.
The promised land and all it included (even cities of refuge) was an amazing provision for Israel. Similarly, Jesus Christ is an absolutely amazing provision for us. He provides eternal salvation and a new life through his indwelling presence, but he also provides access to the throne of grace. Do we really grasp what this provision is? As Christians we are connected to both earth and heaven at all times. The throne of grace is not just a figure of speech. At any time we can journey to the throne of grace. It is real (an actual place of refuge) for all who draw near to it with confidence through the amazing experience of prayer. This we must do “so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need” down here on earth in the middle of what we are going through.
Today's prayer response from today's thoughts:
Lord, thanks for your provision of grace on every level. Teach me how to come to your throne of grace. Thank you Jesus that you understand all that I go through and that you are available to me with provisions of mercy and grace that I barely grasp. I come to you confidently for the help I need. Amen!
Posted on Fri, June 22, 2018
by Ken Hart