Below are my thoughts from the daily Bible reading of the West Side Church of Christ. Today’s reading comes from Luke 18. Before reading I invite you to pray and asked God to speak to you as you read his word. Also above in the tabs is a link to the Bible reading plan.
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If we return to our theme of grouping we come to Luke 18 and see a series of stories strung together. We see the persistent widow who comes to the unjust judge, followed by the Parable where the Pharisee brags he is not a sinner while the tax collector falls broken before God, followed by the story of the little children coming to Jesus. What theme do you see from these stories?
I see the theme of a just but loving God. God is one who serves justice to those who have sinned against him. His love for us forces Him to do so. As I write this my mind goes back to the scene that played out before sitting down to write. I just finished disciplining my daughter for throwing a fit when I told her no to using my iPad at this moment. I would not have shown her love if I did not discipline her for her choice to behave with a fit. Friends that unfortunately is justice produced by love.
But … God does not stop there. Not only does His love require justice, His love also shares forgiveness. The little children coming to Jesus in their purity is what God desires of His children. The tax collector falling broken before God is the process of returning to Jesus with the purity of the children. In that state, God’s love overwhelms in forgiveness. God is not like the unjust judge. It is not through persistence that God’s hand is forced. God is always just, both in administering justice and love. But we can learn from the widow, we must always come before God, persistently in a broken state realizing that without God we are not like the little children.