God’s Standard

Not sure that today’s devotion will be exactly what you’re looking for but I’ll go with it and see where it ends up.  I glanced around the old testament this morning and fell upon Nahum, a short book of only 3 chapters.  The little introduction from Peterson in The Message Bible said that God had called Nahum to get back the attention of Israel so that they would again focus on God.  Assyria had gained control of everything and it seemed that Israel was just doomed to be under their control.  It was Nahum’s job to get the Israelites to believe that they were capable of getting out from under Assyria’s thumb.  Much of the book sounds like Nahum is just an enemy hater but he realized that Israel had sinned against God as well as Assyria and he wanted the people to believe/come to understand that Assyria would be judged under the same standards as Israel.  This is something I too often forget, myself.  I see bad people doing bad things  and I pray for their judgement.  Too quickly I brush off my own sins as less “bad” because I’m a Christian and forgiven.  I need to remind myself often that a sin is a sin, no matter who did it. 
In Nahum 1: 1-6, Nahum talks about the harshness of God and how strong and powerful he is.  It’s a bit scary to read and think about even.  Then in verse 7, it sounds like his writing has changed but it did only slightly.  Nahum 1:7-10, God is good, a hiding place in tough times, He recognizes and welcomes anyone looking for help, no matter how desparate the trouble, but cozy islands of escape he wipes off the map.  No one gets away from God.  Why waste time conniving against God?  He’s putting an end to all such scheming.  For troublemakers, no second chances.  Like a pile of dry brush, soaked in oil, they’ll go up in flames.
Fear of God is healthy.  God’s standards are for everyone, Christian and Non-Christian alike. 
Dear Heavenly Father- I am sorry.  I am sorry for placing myself on a pedastal above other sinners.  I am sorry for not remembering that your standards are the same for everyone.  Please forgive me and help me to see the wrongs in my life.  Help me to be less judgemental of others and more focused on You.  I thank you for your goodness and patience with me.  I thank you for giving me comfort in tough times.  I thank you for knowing that all of your people need discipline and correction, not just the ones who don’t believe in you.  I thank you and praise you today! -amen

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