It was 21st March, 2016 at about 9:30pm and I was trying to catch up with a bible reading plan --Luke 1:1-38
--I had missed in the morning. While reading, verses 8-9 caught my attention "Now while he was serving as priest before God when his division was on duty, according to the custom of the priesthood, he was chosen by lot to enter the temple of the Lord and burn incense" (Luke 1:8-9).
The priest in question here is Zachariah, the Father of John the Baptist and husband of Elizabeth. Prior to vv8-9, Luke briefly profiled their lives: "In the days of Herod, king of Judea, there was a priest named Zechariah, of the division of Abijah. And he had a wife from the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. And they were both righteous before God, walking blamelessly in all the commandments and statutes of the Lord. But they had no child, because Elizabeth was barren, and both were advanced in years".
Here is a couple described as rigthteous and walking blameless…
The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;his mercies never come to
an end they are new every morning; great is your
faithfulness.(Lamentations 3:22-23 ESV ). Lamentations, as the
name suggests ---weeping, dirge---is a book written to mourn the
destruction of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem. Popularly ascribed to the
prophet Jeremiah who is also described as the weeping prophet, Lamentations 3, where we find vs 22-23, paints a very sad and hopeless picture .
" I am the man that hath seen affliction by the rod of his wrath. He
hath led me, and brought me into darkness, but not into light. Surely
against me is he turned; he turneth his hand against me all the day. My
flesh and my skin hath he made old; he hath broken my bones.He hath
builded against me, and compassed me with gall and travail. He hath set
me in dark places, as they that be dead of old. He hath hedged me about,
that I cannot get out: he hath made my chain heavy.Also when I cry and
shout, he shutt…
Have you ever thought about it? What is the greatest need of humankind? This question will generate a lot of response. Probably, for the majority, top of the list will be eradication of poverty and disease. Others will put forth world peace, eradication of drug and sex trafficking. To others, equal rights for all humankind will top the list. These indeed are commendable, but they are not the greatest need of humankind. The Bible gives us the answer: For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23).
This is the divine verdict from God. All humankind have sinned. Not only that, but by our sins, we are enstranged, alienated and separated from God. We are enemies of God and liable to receive the just punishment for our sins. Paul describes our hopelessness in Ephesians 2:1-3 saying , “And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in …