October 20, Saturday

Devotional Thoughts for Today

“Surprised by His Grace”

Jeremiah 46: 25-26

The Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, said: “Behold, I am bringing punishment upon Amon of Thebes, and Pharaoh and Egypt and her gods and her kings, upon Pharaoh and those who trust in him. 26 I will deliver them into the hand of those who seek their life, into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon and his officers. Afterward Egypt shall be inhabited as in the days of old, declares the Lord.”

In today’s passage, we find a strange and unexpected plot twist. The whole chapter was committed to detailing the sure destruction of Egypt—that God was going to hand over their nation to Nebuchadnezzar and the Babylonians. The scary part was that there was nothing they could do about it. No amount of preparation was going to change their fate, not only because the Babylonians were more powerful, but because it was the inevitable judgment of God that would come to pass. However, we see a sign of grace from God towards the Egyptians in verse 26. Jeremiah proclaims on behalf of God that they will not be completely decimated and their land will be “inhabited as in the days of old.” In light of their sin, God had every right to make them disappear from the face of the earth—but He preserves them in a surprising show of mercy.

I am always surprised by the grace of God. Even as I continue to mature as a believer, there are so many areas of my life that need the sanctifying work of God so that I would be conformed into His image. And yet, in spite of my shortcomings, His grace continues to flow and take me by surprise. Even in my failure, His favor and provisions are so evident in my life. It seems as if His grace and mercy know no end. I know that many of us struggle with the shame of sin and thus distance ourselves from God thinking that we’ve lost His favor. We have a hard time believing that God can still love us because of how far we’ve fallen. But we see in this passage that even a pagan nation like Egypt can be recipients of God’s mercy. Let us not doubt the extent and persistence of His grace in our lives, and as the writer of Hebrews says, let us approach the throne of God boldly today!

Prayer:  Father, I am astounded by Your constant love and grace in my life. I fall so short in so many areas of my life and yet, You shower me with Your favor. Thank You for Your persistent love and care! Amen.

Bible Reading for Today: Ruth 2-3

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