Today: Psalms 107:33-43; Galatians 2:11-21; Galatians 3:1-9; Isaiah 38, 39 & 40
Cephas was being a hypocrite and Paul called him out. Cephas normally ate with Gentiles, something that Jews under the law weren’t allowed to do. But then the “super apostles” showed up. And Cephas distanced himself from the Gentile Christians. Paul was having none of it!
This battle between works (the law) and grace (freedom) begin in that very first church. People have been trying to save themselves through their good works ever since. But “if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!” (v.21)
This is the third time we see the story of the Godly king, Hezekiah, in the Old Testament. God told Hezekiah, through Isaiah, to “put your house in order because you are going to die; you will not recover.” (v.1)
Hezekiah responded by praying to the LORD, “Remember, LORD, how I have walked before you faithfully and with wholehearted devotion and have done what is good in Your eyes.” And he wept bitterly.
God heard Hezekiah’s prayer and gave him fifteen more years. Don’t ever think God doesn’t hear our prayers!
Later Hezekiah reflected on his sickness and how God saved him:
“Surely it was for my benefit that I suffered such anguish. In Your love You kept me from the pit of destruction; You have put all my sins behind Your back.” Isaiah 38:17
Isaiah 40:28-31 is one of my favorite passages in Isaiah:
“Do you not know? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and His understanding no one can fathom. He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” Isaiah 40:28-31