Fbcsreadthruthebible's Blog

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

Such Times . . .

Revelation 13    Esther 3-4    Psalm 106:1-23

“I saw a beast rising . . .” (Revelation 13:1). And the beast John saw “was allowed to make war on the saints and to conquer them” (v.7). And alongside this we are told that “Haman plotted to destroy all the Jews” (Esther 3:6) while being called to remember the Exodus, when God saved Israel from an oppressive and pursuing foe (Psalm 106:10,11) . . . Together, these texts address the matters of authority abused, government gone bad, and the question of the response called for when official persecution of God’s people takes place — past, present, and future.

“Here is a call for the endurance and faith of the saints” (Revelation 13:10).  This much is clear: the beast does rise. Haman is not an anomaly. Remember this from Exodus: “A new king arose over Egypt, who did not know Joseph” (Exodus 1:8). And know this about Rome at the time of the Revelation: it was expected that the emperor be recognized as divine and worshiped as such (Revelation 13:12). The beast does, indeed, rise . . . And when it does, God’s people are consistently called to respond with endurance and faith. So Esther is called to go before the king on behalf of her people (Esther 4:8). So in the Revelation of Jesus the seven churches are repeatedly called to remain faithful. And so the psalmist calls God’s people to “do righteousness at all times” (v.3) and offers Israel’s repeated unfaithfulness as a negative example (Psalm 106:7,13,21) . . . The story is consistent: In every situation, the people of God are called to live lives of endurance and faith, observing justice and doing righteousness. With a certain perspective…

“O give thanks to the Lord, for he is good” (Psalm 106:1). Steadfast in love (v.1), mighty in power, and faithful to save (v.8), God is good. All the time. And this, foundationally, is the source of our endurance and faith. May you trust God, come what may. May this trust empower you to endure to the end, observing justice, doing righteousness, and giving thanks. And as you do, who knows how God will work in and through you?!

“Happy are those who observe justice,
who do righteousness at all times.”
— Psalm 106:3

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