Friday, January 16, 2009

Cold weather and God’s word

When I awoke this morning, the temperature was about -17°F with a wind-chill of something like -33°. The reporter on the radio said this was the coldest weather we’ve had on this date since 1982. I don’t remember if it was 1982 or not, but I do remember a couple extremely cold Sundays back in the 1980s—so cold, in fact, that church was cancelled. Today, it is so cold the decision was made to cancel school.

Since I’m home for the day, I have time to write. Thinking about this cold weather, I was reminded of that part of Psalm 147 where we read these words:

15 He sends out his command to the earth;
his word runs swiftly.
16 He gives snow like wool;
he scatters hoarfrost like ashes.
17 He hurls down his crystals of ice like crumbs;
who can stand before his cold?
18 He sends out his word, and melts them;
he makes his wind blow and the waters flow.
19 He declares his word to Jacob,
his statutes and rules to Israel.
20 He has not dealt thus with any other nation;
they do not know his rules.
Praise the LORD!
According to the psalmist, the power of God’s word is seen in the forces of nature. God sent out His command and the temperature plunged way below zero, it became too cold to be outside, buses wouldn’t start and, as a result, school was cancelled for the day. “Who can stand before his cold?”

God has spoken His powerful word to His people whom He has chosen (Psalm 147:19). He has caused it to be written down so that it could be preserved for generations to follow. God’s chosen people hear His voice as it speaks in the pages of Scripture, and they do what He commands. The Lord Jesus Christ said, “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me” (John 10:27). Those who are not God’s people—who are not Christ’s sheep—do not hear Him. They don’t know His rules. They are lost without a guide.

What a profoundly awesome privilege it is to know this great and powerful God! That believers in Christ Jesus enjoy this unique privilege is an act of grace. “He has not dealt thus with any other nation”, and it’s not been because we’ve earned the privilege. It’s all of grace that God has chosen to speak to us, to bring us into relationship with Him, to allow us a glimpse into His mind. I wouldn’t know anything about God or know the way to God without His revelation. This is why the Bible is so infinitely valuable and precious, and why it should be read, studied, taught, proclaimed and believed.

On this cold day, I’m grateful for God’s gracious gift of a warm home and the opportunity I have to spend time with Him, reading His word and listening to His voice.

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