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On The Upper Room Discourse Re-Release For Lent 2024

It Is Time!

These are the numbers of the divisions of the armed troops who came to David in Hebron to turn the kingdom of Saul over to him, according to the word of the Lord…Of Issachar, those who had understanding of the times, to know what Israel ought to do, two hundred chiefs, and all their kindred under their command.
1 Chronicles 12:23, 32

Do you know what time it is? As you look at what is happening to our country and world, do you know what time it is? Jesus expected His listeners to know the time:

“When you see a cloud rising in the west, you immediately say, ‘It is going to rain’; and so it happens. And when you see the south wind blowing, you say, ‘There will be scorching heat’; and it happens. You hypocrites! You know how to interpret the appearance of earth and sky, but why do you not know how to interpret the present time?” (Luke 12:54-56).

In recent days I am feeling something like Rip Van Winkle in Washington Irving’s short story about a man who got drunk and slept through the American Revolution. It seems that I have sadly awakened to a country I don’t recognize.

During this precarious time for our nation and world, I am repeatedly drawn to today’s scripture taken from the history of ancient Israel. In this passage the Holy Spirit singles out for special mention men from the tribe of Issachar “who had understanding of the times to know what Israel ought to do.”

These were sober, clear-headed, tough-minded men who understood the dangerous times in which they lived and knew what God wanted them to do. They realized that God was with David, the son of Jesse, and not with King Saul. They saw what others could not see, or refused to see, and took the dangerous step of taking their stand with God’s anointed, David. This band of bold men was remembered by their children, grandchildren, and, most of all remembered by God. They understood the times and what they ought to do.

It was a tiny, outnumbered fellowship of Christians in crazed Emperor Nero’s Rome, whom the apostle Paul challenged: “You know what time it is, how it is now the moment for you to wake from your sleep” (Romans 13:11). And that tiny band of Jesus followers turned Rome, and an empire, upside down!

These urgent times are calling us to stand firm for the Gospel of Christ, boldly living out its message and proclaiming it to others. Recognizing we are in a battle of good against evil, Water from Rock as a ministry, recommits to the Good News of Jesus and being fearless to make Him known to a shattered world.

As followers of Jesus, we know what to do! Let’s do it! Now is the time!

A fellow traveler,
Tim

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