Tuesday, December 21, 2021

Daily Devotion: The Oriental Manger

Bible Reading:  Luke 2:9-20

Key Verse: Verse 16– “And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger.”

Key Words: lying in a manger

Donald Greyhouse shares the story of God’s love found in Hosea 5.

“There is a beautiful picture in one of the Old Testament prophets that shows how God is for us, even in the hard things which He must bring upon us.  After speaking of the sin of Israel that took that nation away from Him, God says, ‘Therefore, will I be unto Ephraim as a moth…’ (Hosea 5:12).  Some little insect comes into life and nests among the things we value.   Suddenly we realize that corruption is there.  God means this for a sign that will cause us to turn to Him immediately.  If we accept the work of the moth and return to God, He will restore to us all that He has taken away.

“But suppose men do not turn to God when He sends His insect-troubles?  Two verses later He gives another word which is more terrible: ‘I will be unto Ephraim as a lion...’ (5:14).  This is the progress of God’s love.  He will not let us lose ourselves without exhausting all of the resources of His love.  The moth may have eaten valuable possessions, but we can turn the rug around, we can put the couch against a wall where the ravages cannot be seen, we can move a lamp so that the light will not shine upon the destruction.  Then He is forced to send the lion.  With no warning at all, great trouble springs upon us like a beast of prey.  Fear grips us.  Our blood runs cold.  Happy are we, if we realize that this is the Lord of love, who calls us to turn from the path where lions lurk and to run to the path of His will where no enemy can assail us.

“Thousands of people, however, have had the moth and the lion and have not been moved by them.  God is forced to hide His face from them.  They are left, perhaps in unconcern, perhaps in restless and uneasy worry, but in it all, God is being good to them, showing Himself for them by holding the door of salvation open, and calling them to Himself.”

What to do:
✞ Praise God today and everyday for His “first coming.”  Pray for His second coming.

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