Welcome to the first electronic Fairview church of Christ newsletter.
God Makes the Glass Half Full
by Jacob Hudgins
“If the LORD delights in us, he will bring us into this land and give it to us” (Num 14:8)
Twelve men spy out the land of Canaan. They see the same thing, and agree on their assessment of the land. “It flows with milk and honey, and this is its fruit. However, the people who dwell in the land are strong, and the cities are fortified and very large. And besides, we saw the descendants of Anak there” (Num 13:27-28). Joshua and Caleb agree with this information; they have seen the same thing!
It is not the information that makes their message a “bad report” (Num 13:32). It is their interpretation.
In John 10 we see Jesus using a figure of speech saying: “I am the good shepherd”. In verses 1-5, He talks about how sheep will not follow a shepherd they do not know. The sheep follow him, for they know his voice. A stranger they will not follow, but they will flee from him, for they do not know the voice of strangers.
We will not be able to follow Jesus unless we build a relationship with Him. Unless we trust God, we will not be willing to give ourselves completely over to Him. Luckily for us, “the good shepherd” was willing to “Lay down my own life for the sheep.”
Solomon’s prayer at the dedication of the temple is stunning. He is wise, humble, forward-looking, and thoughtful. He is precisely the type of leader we would all admire and be eager to follow. Most of all, though, he is clearly a deep believer in Jehovah God. He knows that God is too big to be contained in a building, and in simple humility asks for him to hear and forgive his people, maintaining relationship despite their weakness.
This was a life-changing day for the paralytic. His friends brought him on a bed to Jesus, breaking through a roof to lower him to where the Master was teaching. “When Jesus saw their faith” (Matt 9:2), he forgave the man’s sins and proved his authority to do so by healing the man of his paralysis. Yet I am intrigued by the last words, “And he rose and went home” (Matt 9:7).