Thursday, 19 November 2020
Title: God Forgives You
Author: Arnold Lim

Psalm 103:9-12
He will not always accuse, nor will he harbour his anger forever;
He does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities.
For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his love for those who fear him;
As far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.

Consider the life of Judah, the fourth son of Jacob and Leah. Judah, together with his brothers, sold their youngest brother, Joseph, as a slave to the Ishmaelites for twenty shekels of silver. This marked the start of his downward spiral into more sin.

Not long after, he left his comfortable home. Why, you may ask? Perhaps, he could not face his father after what he had done. He felt guilty as his God-given conscience ate at him. It’s a terrible thing to be wrecked with guilt, day after day.

He married the daughter of a Canaanite man, although it was specifically prohibited by God. They had three sons: Er, Onan, Shelah. Er married Tamar. Then tragedy struck. In Genesis 38:7, we find that Er was so wicked, the Lord put him to death. The second son, Onan, was then asked to fulfil his obligations according to customs of the time, by marrying Tamar, so that she could have a son. He married her but refused to give her a son. His refusal was wicked in the Lord’s sight, so Onan was also put to death.

From here, it gets even more interesting, to put it mildly.

Judah proceeded to push Tamar out, forcing her to return to her family, believing her to be bad luck. But Tamar was not to be out-manoeuvred. After returning to her family and out of desperation for a son, she disguised herself as a prostitute and enticed Judah to sleep with her when he was on one of his business trips. Judah, now hit rock bottom, having committed incest with his daughter-in-law. To cut the story short, Judah’s sin, like all sins, was later exposed by Tamar. (You can read the story in detail in Genesis 38.)

Did Judah repent? Did God forgive Judah? How did Judah’s life end?
In Genesis 44, we see Judah as a changed man. He has returned to his family and is now taking charge in a time of famine. We see the brothers going to Egypt to get grain and in the process encountering Joseph, now the Prime Minister. After Benjamin, Jacob’s youngest son, is accused of stealing a silver cup, Judah is willing take his brother’s place, to become a slave in Egypt. In Genesis 49, Jacob, near death, blessed Judah as a “lion’s cub with a sceptre and a ruler’s staff between his feet … and the obedience of the nations is his.”

God, in His grace and mercy, forgave and restored Judah; Judah and Tamar are even included in the genealogy of Jesus, found in Matthew 1.

You might be in the middle of a downward spiral into sin. Stop and repent like Judah did, while there is still time. And seek God’s forgiveness. He will forgive you because He loves you. Do not follow Judas Iscariot to destruction. He started out as a thief, betrayed Jesus for thirty pieces of silver and ended his life by hanging himself.

Or you may have sinned in the past; made bad financial decisions that impacted your family; caused broken family relationships. Whatever it is, repent and seek God’s forgiveness and mercy.

God forgave Judah and He will forgive you. Have faith in how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ. (Ephesians 3:18) and that nothing can separate us from God’s love (Romans 8:38-39).

Prayer

O Lord and Heavenly Father, You are a loving god, full of grace and mercy. Because of Your great love for us, You do not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities. Instead, You caused Your Son, Jesus Christ, to die for our sins to redeem us and make us righteous in Your sight.

We thank You, O Lord, and we pray in Jesus’ name, Amen.

每日灵粮
星期四, 2020年11月19日
标题:上帝赦免您
作者:林文礼弟兄
翻译:薛秀合姐妹

【诗篇103:9-12】
他不长久责备,也不永远怀怒。
他没有按我们的罪过待我们,也没有照我们的罪孽报应我们。
天离地何等的高,他的慈爱向敬畏他的人也是何等的大!
东离西有多远,他叫我们的过犯离我们也有多远!

思想雅各和利亚的第四个儿子,犹大的生命。犹大和他的兄弟们以二十舍客勒银子将他们最小的弟弟约瑟卖给以实玛利人为奴。这标志着他开始陷入更多的罪恶中。

不久之后,他离开了舒适的家。您可能会问,为什么?也许他为自己所做的事无法面对父亲。当上帝赐予他的良知折磨着他时,他感到内疚。日复一日地感到内疚是一件极其可怕的事情。

后来他娶了一个迦南人的女儿为妻,尽管这是上帝严厉禁止的。他们有三个儿子:珥、俄南、示拉。珥娶了他玛。然后悲剧发生了。在创世记38:7中,我们发现耶和华看珥为恶,就叫他死了。第二个儿子,俄南,被要求按照当时的习俗履行为弟的本分,娶他玛,好叫她可以生一个儿子。他娶了她,但拒绝给她生儿子。他的拒绝在耶和华眼中看为恶,因此耶和华也就叫俄南死了。

婉转地说,从这里开始,事情变得更加有趣了。

犹大继而驱逐他玛,强迫她回到她的家人那里,认为她会带来厄运。可是他玛并不被人所操纵。回到父家后,因她急切要一个儿子,便伪装成妓女,并诱使犹大在一次出差中与她同寝。犹大,如今已跌入谷底,竟与他的儿媳妇犯下乱伦行为。简而言之,犹大的罪,与所有罪一样,后来被他玛揭露了。 (您可以在创世记38章详细阅读此故事。)

犹大悔改了吗?上帝赦免了犹大吗?犹大的生命又如何结束呢?

在创世记44章中,我们看到犹大是一个改过自新的人了。他已返回家人身边,而且正负责饥荒时期的事务。我们看到他们几兄弟去埃及籴粮,并在此过程中遇见了当时身为宰相的约瑟。雅各的小儿子便雅悯,被指控偷了一个银杯后,犹大愿意取代他弟弟的位置,成为埃及的奴仆。在创世记49章(新译本)中,雅各在临终前祝福犹大“是只小狮子,权杖必不离开犹大,王圭必不离他两脚之间……万族都要臣服他。”

上帝以祂的恩典与怜悯,赦免并恢复了犹大;犹大和他玛甚至被列入在马太福音1章所记载的耶稣家谱中。

您可能正陷入罪恶的漩涡之中。趁着还有时间,如犹大一样,停下来悔改吧。寻求上帝的宽恕。祂会赦免您,因为祂爱您。不要跟随加略人犹大步向灭亡。他从做一个小偷开始,为三十块银子出卖了耶稣,最后上吊结束了自己的生命。

或者您可能在过去曾经犯了罪;做了错的财务决定而影响了您的家庭;导致家庭关系破裂。无论是什么,都要悔改并寻求上帝的宽恕和怜悯。

上帝赦免了犹大,祂也必饶恕您。相信基督的爱是何等长阔高深。(以弗所书3:18),没有任何事物能叫我们与神的爱隔绝(罗马书8:38-39)。

祷告
主啊,我们的天父,祢是慈爱的上帝,祢充满恩典与怜悯。因祢对我们的大爱,祢没有按我们的罪过待我们,也没有照我们的罪孽报应我们。相反地,祢叫祢的独生子耶稣基督,为我们的罪而死以救赎我们,并使我们在祢眼中被看为义。
主啊,我们感谢祢,我们奉耶稣的名祷告,阿门

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