Editor’s Note: The AMI devotionals from Nov. 9-11 are written by Pastor Peter Yoon of Kairos Christian Church (S. D.).
Devotional Thoughts for Today
Nehemiah 7:2 I put in charge of Jerusalem my brother, Hanani, along with Hananiah, the commander of the citadel, because he was a man of integrity and feared God more than most people do.
People trust and follow spiritual leaders with integrity. Here, we see that Nehemiah places a “man of integrity” into leadership in Jerusalem. Years ago, a retail electronic store partnered with an online company enticing consumers with $200 gift card for anyone who signed up on an annual contract. I don’t know whether it was someone’s oversight or not, but consumers soon figured out a way to cancel the annual contract without any penalties, while being able to keep the $200 gift card. As you can imagine, a line formed at the retail store with customers ready to take full advantage of the generous offer.
So I asked my spiritual leader if he also would like to take advantage of the offer. Technically, no law would be broken, and after all, it was the mistake of the retail and the online company. But fully aware of the chance for a nice gift, he said, “No thanks.” Like anyone else, he could have purchased a new flat-screen monitor or an appliance for the home or video games for the kids or even all three. Yet he chose integrity—the type of integrity that goes beyond the letter of the law.
God places such people into leadership and entrusts them to serve His purposes. Such people not only become familiar with God’s commands, but they truly live to honor the Lord who gives them. Nehemiah noted that Hananiah “feared God more than most people do” before placing him in charge of God’s city.
Will you also seek to fear the Lord and honor Him so that God can use you for His purposes?
Lord, help me to fear you and honor you. Allow me to live a life of integrity that goes beyond the minimum requirements. Please reveal Your glory in my life more fully, so that I will respond with honor to You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Bible Reading for Today: Zech. 13
Lunch Break Study
1 Samuel 2:27-30
Now a man of God came to Eli and said to him, “This is what the Lord says: ‘Did I not clearly reveal myself to your ancestor’s family when they were in Egypt under Pharaoh? 28 I chose your ancestor out of all the tribes of Israel to be my priest, to go up to my altar, to burn incense, and to wear an ephod in my presence. I also gave your ancestor’s family all the food offerings presented by the Israelites. 29 Why do you scorn my sacrifice and offering that I prescribed for my dwelling? Why do you honor your sons more than me by fattening yourselves on the choice parts of every offering made by my people Israel?’ 30 “Therefore the Lord, the God of Israel, declares: ‘I promised that members of your family would minister before me forever.’ But now the Lord declares: ‘Far be it from me! Those who honor me I will honor, but those who despise me will be disdained.
Questions to Consider
- According to verse 29, how did Eli dishonor and despise God?
- What is promised to those who choose to honor the Lord? And what is the inevitable outcome for those who choose to despise Him?
- The fuller context is found in 1 Sam. 2:12-17: Eli’s two sons were treating the Lord’s offering with great contempt. They were also sleeping with the women who were serving at the temple. It was Eli’s responsibility to bring discipline and correction; however he failed to do so.
- Consider the two outcomes: What will it look like in life to be honored by God? What will it look like in life to be disdained by Him?
Think of tangible ways in which you can show honor to the Lord. Write some applications on your journal and ask the Holy Spirit to help you follow through in honoring Him.