January 24: power (Exodus 9-11; Luke 24)

After reading the scripture for today, here’s what I wrote in my journal.

God holds the power. Pharaoh resists, but God holds the power. Pharaoh thinks he has the power, but ultimate power is found in God alone. The clash between powers escalates toward what will happen in the coming chapters. Pharaoh will sacrifice the first born in an effort to hold on to power, but God holds the power. The final act in this clash of powers happens when God allows his own Son, the first-born, to be sacrificed. Just when it appears that the power of this world has prevailed in Jesus’ death, God’s power prevails in the resurrection.

Why so much attention to power? What does God want? God wants people to worship God, but not because God is so vain that God wants to be worshipped. Instead, God wants the people whom God has created to be aligned with God’s purposes – and that requires the focus that worship provides. Therefore, Luke’s gospel ends as it begins in the Temple, the house of worship. Worship of the Living God, now revealed in Jesus is at the heart of Luke’s vision of the Christian life. Is it also at the heart of my life?

As I write this, I am listening to Chris Tomlin’s song, “Lord, I need You.”

Lord, I need You, oh I need You
Every hour I need You
My one defense, my righteousness
Oh God, how I need You

So teach my song to rise to You
When temptation comes my way
And when I cannot stand I’ll fall on You
Jesus You’re my hope and stay
And when I cannot stand I’ll fall on You
Jesus You’re my hope and stay

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