Fbcsreadthruthebible's Blog

Part of the FBCS 2010 Read Through the Bible Project: Enter the Story. Join the Song.

Would You Rather . . . ?

John 18:12-27   2 Chronicles 27-28   Psalm 84

“I would rather . . .” (Psalm 84:10). Today we see king Ahaz become “yet more faithless to the Lord” (2 Chronicles 28:22). And watch as Peter denies being a disciple of Jesus. Three times (John 18). And alongside these narratives, we hear the words of the psalmist: “I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than live in the tents of wickedness” (Psalm 84:10) . . . Taken together, today’s readings present us with a question: Which would we rather do? Would I — would you — rather be faithful to God with little? Or unfaithful with much? Would you and I rather trust God come what may? Or do whatever necessary to avoid difficulty? And how shall we know?

“In the time of his distress . . .” (2 Chronicles 28:22), Ahaz “became yet more faithless.” And it was under pressure that Peter stumbled and fell . . . And, certainly, we all know that it is one thing to declare our “rather” when things are going well, and another thing altogether to follow through when trouble arrives. But it is precisely in the time of distress that truth is revealed in matters of faithfulness, trust, character, and “rathers.” But there are choices we can make in times of ease that improve our follow through . . .

“My soul longs, indeed it faints for the courts of God” (Psalm 84:2). The longing is for being in the temple. And the longing issues forth in action: “They go from strength to strength” (v.7). That is, they get themselves to the temple. The surest way of remaining faithful in times of distress is to be faithful in times of strength. And, conversely, if we fail to draw near to God when life is calm, faithfulness will be hard to come by in distress. No matter the “rather.” So, would you rather be faithful in the time of your distress? Then live faithfully now. Cultivate a longing for God. And activate your faithfulness now. Worship now. Meditate on God’s word now. Sing to the Lord now. Find your joy in the Lord now. Or would you rather . . . ?

“For a day in your courts
is better than a thousand elsewhere . . .
O Lord of hosts,
happy is everyone who trusts in you.”
     — Psalm 84:10,12 

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