Food for Friday

And after they were brought to Babylon, Jechonias begat Salathiel, and Salathiel begat Zorobabel. Matthew 1:12

What is the worst personal catastrophe that you ever experienced? Some of us have, over the years, encountered great losses of family members, the destruction of our homes or other possessions, or the loss of jobs, or even the collapse of an entire business. These events cause such upheaval that life afterwards is not the same, much as the 9/11 attacks by Islamist terrorists in the United States changed that nation forever. And yet, every great tragedy has within it something that emerges as a result, something that rises higher and better than before. Our text today speaks of the carrying away of the Israelites into Babylon. Yet in that era of captivity, God moved and worked, and brought about His purposes in amazing and miraculous ways. And some of God’s purposes were not hindered or interrupted in the least, because in the names in this verse we see part of the genealogy of Jesus Christ. We also see the rise of a great leader who God would use to bring a remnant of faithful back to the promised land.

What was your latest calamity? How has it affected your life? Even more important, how has it affected your relationship with your God? Some people, even some Christians, blame God when things seem to go wrong. But God has never made a mistake in what He allows us to encounter. So, instead of blaming God, we need to trust God to work things out for His glory and for our benefit. He can even use a national disaster such as the Babylonian captivity to raise up a Zorobabel.

Zorobabel – or Zerubbabel – was a godly man with a great vision. Dark circumstances did not prevent him from serving his God. He stands as a great example to us today. Despite adversity, Zorobabel was faithful, as we should always be. Despite the destruction of a testimony, Zorobabel carried on faithfully the line of blessing that resulted in the birth of the Saviour. We too can never tell how our faithfulness will bring forth blessing in the near or distant future.

Will you be a Zorobabel today? Be faithful and strive to serve your Lord. And God will bless. -Jim MacIntosh

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