The Refuge

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(from Isaiah 16:1-5)

Inspired by these verses, I see a profound compassion for those who are our enemies, in their hour of need.† Jesus said to love our enemies, not to hate them.† We do not contend with flesh and blood, but with spiritual forces of evil, who express themselves through those who are not controlled by the Spirit of God.† We were once the same, if we have been reconciled to God in Jesus.† Once we too, were the instruments of sin, but God had mercy on us when we cried out to Him.

When those who were once against us cry out to us for help, shall we turn away?† Is that what Jesus did to us when we were His enemies?† He gave us His council to help turn our lives around.† He granted us justice for whatever righteous needs we had.† He made Himself a merciful shade from the heat of condemnation that was beating down on us, which we deserved.† He hid us from the ruthless prosecution of the Accuser.† He did not betray us to those who wanted to destroy us.† He let those of us who were outcasts from the self-righteous, walk along with Him.

He promises to give us the safety of salvation and His protection.† The Evil One, who presently holds sway over the world, wants to grind all of us with his heal into the sand.† He canít knock God off His throne, and has been outwitted by Christ, so he tries to destroy the objects of the Lordís affection, the children made in His image.† Think of it, God is love, so hurting us where Satan can bruise Him!

But the day is coming when the Evil One and all who are his, will vanish from the land.† Jesus will rule forever in faithfulness, justice, righteousness and love.† In Him, both the heavens and the earth, will be blessed.

Those of us who have been reconciled to Christ have been given the ministry of reconciliation.† To reach out to those who repel us.† To forgive those who misuse or betray us.† To give to those who canít repay us.† To bless those who curse us.† To pray for those who persecute us.† To speak out for those who canít defend themselves.† To lay down our lives for the Kingdom of God.† What purpose in life is greater than this?†