‘O Lord God of heaven, see their arrogance, and have pity on our people in their humiliation, and look kindly today on the faces of those who are consecrated to you.’
The Apocrypha is not the word of God, but can highlight aspects of the culture of the day. We see how the Israelites regarded God with humiliation in this passage.
21Uzziah took him from the assembly to his own house and gave a banquet for the elders; and all that night they called on the God of Israel for help.
We are sent out as lowly sheep amongst wolves, coyotes, and foxes (Matt 10:16) who would like nothing more than to see us fall from the path of righteousness; only God (Triune and all) can really keep us as he intends to keep us. He will keep us for he loves us as his adopted children through Christ the LORD. (Ex 19:5) We radiate the love of God through our actions. we are his epitome?!
Priest speaks for the man, he petitions for his partitioner, so we represent our Pastor and our Church in our actions. Water is a clarifying thing. Water is holy. We transfer our impurity to the whole group, our sinning is never an individual act. This may go against our thoughts on individualism in America.
1 Chronicles 3
The order of birth is important to the LORD v. 15 Matthew Henry wrote: "of all the families of Israel, none were so illustrious as the family of David: here we have a full account of it. From this family, as concerning the flesh, Christ came. The attentive observer will perceive that the children of the righteous enjoy many advantages."(Commentary on 1 Chronicles 3) The offspring are important for God to record and remember.
Our sinful ways matter to the whole body of the church. We are made one in Christ. Nothing goes unnoticed! Arrogance has blossomed. Arrogance blinds us from our ability to see correctly. What mercy is preserved in the nation if the wisdom held by the priests and council of the elders is no longer heeded. Who will lead whom? At what cost? Matthew Henry asks the LORD to "enable us to seek that good part which shall not be taken away." God will not remove himself fully for he has made an unbreakable covenant; a covenant that we as humans will continually break; he knowing this passed through the offering in our place. The covenant remains not because of our good works, but because God is the one who made the covenant with himself, and being fully good, will not remove himself from our story as men.
Ephesians 3:17 17so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love,(NIV)
His riches are as unsearchable and as sure as ever' yet while angels adore the wisdom of God in the redemption of the church, the ignorance of self-wise and carnal men deems the whole to be foolishness. Matthew Henry
How can gentiles and Jews (who are chosen) by one with God?
Did God always intend to have Gentiles and Jews grafted into one body?
Reading the Message Paraphrase:
I also thought of the Flying Letters in the Story the book of Flying Letters: Where Rabbi Judah falls asleep and in a dream saw a Rabbi Shimon ascending on high bearing a scroll of the Torah in his arms. Behind him flew a flock in formation. Then Rabbi Judah looked closer and saw that it was not a a flock of birds but a flock of flying letters." (Schwartz 77)
I read, "So don't let my present trouble on your behalf get you down. Be proud." I than thought of what was said in Ezekiel of an arrogant nation, of self taught men. But then as a I read further I read, "He does it not by pushing us around but by working within us, his Spirit deeply and gently within us." SO this is a strength of character not of will or brutal energy.
Reading the Voice
My take away was that Ephesians 3 is a prayer to the people of the book, both gentile and Jewish, to take strength always in the LORD.
Reading Bruce's Paraphrase
bring my stewardship of the mystery to the light of day, discharging it before the eyes of all. God at one time had kept the Gospel hidden from his people because of God's sovereign will. Now this mystery can be revealed through the body of Christ held at our Church. So may you be filled up with God's own fullness.
Italics are the text of others.
LORD I AM THANKFUL FOR YOUR RENEWAL OF MY HEART THROUGH YOUR GRACIOUS WAYS< I ASK THAT YOU WATCH OVER THE FAMILIES OF REDEEMER AND THAT YOU CONTINUE TO WORK ON MY MATURITY IN YOUR WAYS AMEN
8 He was not the light, but came to bear witness about the light. 9 The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world.