Tuesday, December 29, 2009

daily text 12/29

*FYI -I didn't get to finish the post I was working on about literacy classes...so check back later since I'm probably gonna do a double post today of yearbook experiences

Tuesday, December 29th, 2009
"If errors were what you watch, O Jah, O Jehovah, who could stand? For there is the true forgiveness with you." (Psalm 130:3, 4)

The extent of Jehovah’s forgiveness is illustrated in the case of King Manasseh of Judah. He did what was bad in Jehovah’s eyes. Manasseh set up altars to Baal, worshipped “all the army of the heavens,” and even built altars to false gods in two temple courtyards. He made his sons pass through the fire and encouraged spiritistic practices. Later, while in captivity, Manasseh repented and humbly kept praying to God, who forgave him and restored him to the kingship in Jerusalem, where he promoted true worship. (2 Chronicles 33:2-17) Centuries later, the apostle Peter sinned grievously by denying Jesus. (Mark 14:30, 66-72) However, Jehovah forgave Peter because he was genuinely repentant. (Luke 22:62; Acts 2:14-36) Is there any reason to believe that God would be less forgiving toward truly repentant Christians today?
(Watchtower issue: 07/15/07, 1:14, 15)

*a brother gave a funny talk about Manasseh once, saying how when he was a little kid and he learned how bad Manasseh was and that Jehovah forgave him later in life after he was captured and put into prison, he used to say to his parents: "I think Manasseh tricked Jehovah" lol (because Manasseh was so bad that it's hard to imagine a man like him truly being repentant).

But that account just goes to show the depth of Jehovah's understanding and ability to "examine the heart" (Psalm 17:3) because Manasseh didn't just repent on a surface level while he was suffering in prison ... but rather he showed by his later actions that he was genuinely repentant....because after he was finally freed, he restored pure worship and did what he could to 'right the wrongs' he had commited. The Scriptural account also shows that he remained loyal to Jehovah afterward, for the rest of his life. Which stands in contrast with some of the other kings of Israel who were more wishy-washy in their loyalty to Jehovah's laws. Even King Ahab (who also did what was bad on a large scale in Israel), would occasionally repent for a little while when things went wrong, but his overall life-course demonstrates that he wasn't sincere in the long-run, because he would go right back to doing what was bad again.

So that's a good reminder for us today not to ever presume we know a person's true motives or heart condition, or attempt to pass judgement on them based on what we personally think about their attitude or actions. Jehovah has a perfect sense of justice and even if wrong acts go unnoticed or unpunished for awhile, he always requires accountability for the consequences of a persons actions, even when he forgives them. Which shows that God doesn't forgive people simply from a sentimental standpoint.