February 22, 2021

DOUBLE HONOUR instead of shame - Bro. T. Stephen

I greet and bless everyone in the name of Jesus Christ   our God, who created  and formed us and who never ever forgets us. The blessed word that God has given for   you, today is from the book of Isaiah 61:7,  “Instead of shame My people will have a double honour. And instead of confusion they shall   rejoice in their portion. Therefore in their land, they shall possess double.”

From the above context we learn that the Lord comforts His chosen people with a double inheritance or reward. He wants to comfort his people who have been put to shame. They had experienced humiliation and sorrow which they had to go through in the strange land because they had not walked wisely, before the Lord. It will not be vain on the part of anyone who seeks God. And today His word is calling us to make a change in our lives.  We need to alter not only our ways, but we need a change of mind. We must alter our judgements about others, our own dear ones. We need to understand their mind set Instead of being profane, selfish, we need to be patient, humble, kind, and peaceable.

When you change your  mindset towards others, then you  shall rejoice -in your portion – That is, you shall be permitted to rejoice in the privileges which you shall   receive  from the Lord.  They will be more than a compensation for all the calamities which you have been called to endure in that strange land.  When they realise their mistake and return to their  own  land ( Bethlehem ) which provides bread then they would restore their former privileges and blessings there.

When we alter our ways, we will receive fullness, freeness and greatness of the rich mercy in Christ and remove from us all narrow views of sovereign grace. Usually a sinner whose sin has been forgiven finds peace in his conscience and love constrains him to devote himself to the service of the Redeemer. There shall be no more shame or humiliation. God wants to provide for those who grieve in sorrow, to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair.

There is one such incident in the Bible which records about Naomi, who went with her husband and her two sons to Moab. As there was famine in Bethlehem her family moved to  Moab. But there in that strange land Elimelech , Naomi’s husband died. And she was left alone with her two sons. So she got them married. They took wives of the women of Moab. They were Orpah and the name of the other was Ruth. And they dwelt there about ten years. Then both the sons of Naomi, namely Mahlon and Chilion died. Her sorrow mounted high and she was grief stricken to see her daughter in laws as widows. So she advised them to return to their father’s house. The elder   daughter in law Orpah went back to her father’s house. But Ruth remained Noami. She bluntly refused to leave her. She said, to Naomi,  “Where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people and your God my God.  Where you die I will die, and there I will be buried. May the Lord deal with me, be it ever so severely, if even death separates you and me.” When Naomi realized that Ruth was determined to go with her, she stopped urging her.

Now the two of them returned to Bethlehem, the house  of bread, at the beginning of barley harvest. And Naomi had a close relative Boaz who was a wealthy man. Naomi was very concerned about the future of Ruth so she sent her to work for Boaz in his fields. So Ruth went to glean until the end of barley harvest and wheat harvest, and dwelt with her mother in law.  She taught her how to behave with Boaz. Ruth found favour in the eyes of Boaz who was considerate toward her. Boaz also inquired of Ruth and he learned that she was a Moabite woman, who came back with Naomi. Just as Naomi expected Boaz married Ruth and she bore a son. Then the women  in the neighbourhood, said to Naomi, “Blessed be the Lord, who has not, left you this day without a near kinsman, and may his name be famous in Israel.” Then Naomi took the child and laid, on her bosom, and became a nurse to him. Thus we see how God blessed Naomi through her daughter in law who sacrificed her youth and instead of going back to her father’s house, like Orpah, she followed her mother in law. This moved the heart of God. He not only provided a new life for Ruth but also blessed her with a son. Instead of shame they were blessed  with a double honour. Return to God and then you will also be blessed with double honour. God Bless You.

Prayer:  Our   loving   heavenly Father, we thank You for this blessed day.  Lord we thank You  for     revealing the   character of Naomi who was blessed with double honour instead of shame and humiliation.  We also realize the sacrifice of Ruth. Lord help us to consider the feelings of others rather than being profane and selfish. Help us to consider the mindset of our dear ones instead of injecting in them our own ideas and motives. Give us the grace to understand others better than ourselves.

In Jesus name we pray.


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