Now and Then

Day 269

Prayer for the day

Seven times a day do I praise you, because of your righteous judgments.

Scripture for the day

Isaiah 1-2, Galatians 5

Being a Christian is hard sometimes! We live in the present, but live also for the future. We live in evil times, looking forward to the times that are good. We live in the tension of the kingdom of God that is present, yet not fully present. And we wait.

While we wait, it is important that we continue to live with an eye to what things will be like. Isaiah’s charge to the people of Israel is that they have forgotten their goal. They were supposed to be the people of God, spreading his love and desire to the entire world. Instead, they have forgotten their God and chased gods made by their own hands. They have forsaken the worship of the true and only God for fleeting pleasures and unreflective, idolatrous lives. They need to be living according to the vision of the future that Isaiah has seen, the vision of equality, the vision of peace and shalom that God will bring about at the end.

Paul cares for the same kind of living as he speaks to the Galatians. He tell them that once they knew the truth and lived according to it, but now they have become idolaters of the flesh, in a sense, as they move toward worshipping the law rather than the giver.

Their failure to live according to their purpose leads them to all kinds of errors, including life in the flesh, doing things according to their fleshly desires rather than according to the will of God. These kinds of actions will keep the doer away from the kingdom, warns Paul, while life in the Spirit, a life lived with an eye to the end, will bring life.

May we live a life of life, toward life, a life in the Spirit.

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