Whenever we go before God we should go with expectation. Each day when I read the Bible I expect God to show me something because I pray and ask Him to do so. I will ask Him to give me a word that I might learn and share it with others. I ask that I will love Him more and love people more. There are some times after I have listened and read the reading for the day that I have only a few words. Tidbits of information that I’ve gleaned. It’s important to me that I “get something” out of my daily reading because then I believe that I am growing in the Lord.

After today’s reading, I didn’t feel like I had gotten much that I could impart. In reading about King Menahem and the atrocities that he committed (2 Kings 15:16), I realized that we read of evil in the Bible to help us understand that, despite all the evil that we do, God loves us. I thought upon people I’ve known who have pointed out horrible things in the Bible and blamed them on God, perishing for a lack of understanding. I wondered about the reigns of the “evil” kings we read of and what’s in “the book of the annals of the kings of Israel” that would tell us more? These and those for Judah are books that are lost to us today. If those writings were ever uncovered would we read them? Would they matter?

As I read about King Ahaz, of Judah, I marveled that this man, who sacrificed his children (2 Kings 16:3, 2 Chronicles 28:3), was the same man who the prophet, Isaiah, prophesied to about the birth of Immanuel, that is Jesus, born to a virgin (Isaiah 7:14-16). Our focus is so often on the things that are happening now or those things that we are worried about, like Ahaz, concerned about being attacked by Rezin and Aram (Isaiah 7:4-11), that we forget the big picture that is the plan of God.

I read about Hosea, who God told to marry a promiscuous woman, and the faith required to do such a thing (Hosea 1:2). I chuckled at the name of Hosea’s wife, Gomer, because I always think of Gomer Pyle from The Andy Griffith Show. I thought of Hosea’s children and their names. “Lo-Ruhamah” and “Lo-Ammi” mean, “not loved” and “not my people”, respectively (Hosea 1:9-10). Can you imagine? Those names were chosen by God as a message to the peoples of Israel and Judah. They would be both a reminder to them, of their sin and how they failed God, but also a reminder of God’s covenant. “The Israelites will be like the sand on the seashore, which cannot be measured or counted. In the place where it was said to them, ‘You are not my people,’ they will be called ‘children of the living God'” (Hosea 1:10 NIV).

From King Menahem, Ahaz, and all of the evil kings of the Bible to Lo-Ruhamah and Lo-Ammi, God shows us that there are always two sides to every story. The human side, filled with all the joy and pain of humanity, and then God’s side, brimming with love, hope, and eternal promise.

Do you know God? God knows you and He loves you. He sees you as significant because you are. Nothing is insignificant to Him. He’s with you today, right now, and He wants you to know Him. Jesus died for your sins and mine so that we could be free of guilt, be freed from death, and live eternally with Him. Eternal salvation is just a prayer away.

Pray this prayer with me to accept the gift of salvation today:

Dear Lord Jesus, I know that I am a sinner, and I ask for Your forgiveness. I believe You died for my sins and rose from the dead. I turn from my sins and invite You to come into my heart and life. I want to trust and follow You as my Lord and Savior. Amen.

If you prayed that prayer then congratulations! You are on the first step of a brand new life. Allow me to be the first to welcome you to my family, the family of God. There are abundant resources available online for new Christians. You can visit here for more information on what to do next. You can also leave me a comment and I’ll do my best to help you on the next step of this incredible journey.