DATE WRITTEN: Friday, 2021-04-02
WRITTEN AT: O’Brien, FL
BIBLE REFERENCE: Exodus 22:22-27
TRANSLATION: New Living Translation (NLT)
BIBLE TEXT: 22 “You must not exploit a widow or an orphan. 23 If you exploit them in any way and they cry out to me, then I will certainly hear their cry. 24 My anger will blaze against you, and I will kill you with the sword. Then your wives will be widows and your children fatherless.
25 “If you lend money to any of my people who are in need, do not charge interest as a money lender would. 26 If you take your neighbor’s cloak as security for a loan, you must return it before sunset. 27 This coat may be the only blanket your neighbor has. How can a person sleep without it? If you do not return it and your neighbor cries out to me for help, then I will hear, for I am merciful.
OBSERVATION: Although the exact words are not evident, God indicates in verse 23 that He is merciful towards widows and orphans, just as he indicated in verse 27 about the poor. I wonder how conscious we are about being merciful, like our Father is? I wonder how careful we are about not coming under the wrath of God when dealing with widows, orphans and the poor? Perhaps today is a good day to consider how we are doing in following His example to be merciful. Allow the Word of God to have it’s way in your life today.
APPLICATION: All throughout the Bible we could find where God thought very tenderly and mercifully towards those who struggled to take care of themselves. Brothers were told to marry the wives left behind by their deceased brother. Deacons were told to lookout for, and take good care of, widows and orphans. But I was totally amazed at the reminder in today’s Scripture again. For God warned the Israelites that if they took advantage of these individuals and, as a consequence, they came to Him about their hurt and their need, He would kill the guilty men so that their wives and children would then become widows and orphans. Men, I don’t know about you, but even though I would fear bringing on hurt or death to myself, the last thing in the world I would want to know, is that my wife and child are being left in want after my passing. But none-the-less, Jesus warned that He would be that upset if He saw His weaker children being abused. So how would this be applied to our current day situations? In your line of business, do you offer incentives or discounts to these individuals, or do you see them as a higher risk, seeing that they are without a husband/father, so you charge them more? This might be for goods, or in the case of interest on loans or credit cards, since this was dealt with next. Do you offer them a ride back home after visiting your place of business, or are you way too busy attending to the rich and giving them every possible incentive to give you more business? Friends, I believe that God has allowed us to remain on earth so that we may represent Him well. Today we have been taught a few things that really upsets the Father. What do you suppose you and I could do to stay in the good graces of our merciful God, as it pertains to widows, orphans and the poor? Sure many who read this devotion today may not be considered rich, but in the eyes of the poor and destitute, they see us as ‘rich’. Cutting our meal size in half will not only help our health, but we might then be able to share a portion with one who may not have a solid, healthy meal. With a few extra dollars on hand, instead of using that for an extra vacation, or another new suit, try helping the widow whose electric power is close to being terminated because of unpaid bills. Instead of putting that poor person under the nearby bridge down, share a jacket with him, or take the extra food to her from a meal where you cooked in excess. Show love towards these people, be a good neighbor to that child of God who needs help. Love these individuals, even as our caring, merciful God loved you while you were still steeped in sin and filth. Let it be said of you that you were merciful, just like your Father!
PRAYER: Dearest Lord Jesus, I am so thankful that You know our very heart and therefore You are well aware of all that we stand for. There’s no need in us trying to tell You what we do and who we love, for You know our very heart. Please penetrate our hearts with Your Word, so that Your perfect will and way may be evident in all that we do, say and think. There are so many needs around us, and I’m afraid that we have become way too hardened by the needs. We attribute that to abuse that we may have seen, or perhaps to family members who should really jump in and help their needy members. But in today’s Scripture You gave us no escsape, for You insisted that if we see the need, or if we are aware of the need, meet it with all that we can. May we become keenly aware of the needs that we will encounter today with those that we come into contact with, and may You become very visible to those that we help. You gave it all, and we thank You for that, but please receive honor, praise and glory for any representation of Yourself today by Your children. AMEN!
FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. You may also visit me on Spotify and listen to Nuggets while you’re out and about. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!