Scripture:
2 Thessalonians 2:13-17
Sat, 15 October 2022

Stable Inside the Divine Sandwich

Observation:

What is the significance of verse 15 being sandwiched by verses 13 to 14 and
verses 16 to 17?

Deeper Reflection
THE THESSALONIANS WERE FIRST “TAUGHT” “THE traditions” – “the truth” (2 Thess 2:10, 12, 13), in order to be able to “stand firm and hold fast” in their discipleship challenges. Otherwise, there is nothing for them to “stand firm and hold fast” to. Likewise for us, to live by the Word of God, we must first learn with diligence, know and understand with wisdom, the Scriptures. Standing firm and holding fast constitute the human part that we play. But there is the divine part – the much more important part – that we must not be ignorant of or ignore. Significantly, the human part (v.15) is sandwiched by the divine part (vv.13-14, 16-17). The divine sandwiching is not just a literary sandwich, but a theological sandwich.It is in the salvation of God, being chosen and called by God (vv.13-14) – and thus, safe and secure in God’s hand – that we stand fast and hold fast to the truth. And as we stand fast and hold fast, the sanctifying and transforming work of the Holy Spirit is taking place (v.13), empowering us and renewing our minds and inner beings (Rom 12:2; 2 Cor 4:16), building our character into Christlikeness, the glory of Christ (v.14; 2 Cor 3:18). And we also stand firm and hold fast in the “eternal encouragement and good hope” that God “has given” us, in which we pray for divine encouragement and empowerment (vv.16-17). Above all, enveloping our standing fast and holding fast is the divine love sandwich: “loved by the Lord” (v.13), and Christ and God “who loved us” (v.16).
Application:

How do the salvation of God and the eternal encouragement and good hope
that God has given me help me to stand firm and hold fast to the truth?

Prayer:
Write a prayer to God as your response from your meditation on and application of the Scriptures.
Prayer Pointers:
  • Give thanks and praise
  • Pray for Church Board: To find security in God’s enveloping love
  • Pray for significant people
  • Pray for those in need
  • Pray for self

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Daily Devo
Daily Devotional Journal
Scripture:
Daniel 10: 4-19
Sat, 30 September 2023

Strengthened by the Divine Touch

Observation:

What is the significance of the repetition of the terms “strength” and
“strengthen” in Daniel’s encounter with God (vv.8, 16, 17, 18, 19)?

Deeper Reflection
When God sent His Word to Daniel in a vision, it was he “alone saw” the “great vision” (vv.7-8). It was a special privilege of divine sovereign grace. The vision was also a vision of God’s holiness and glory manifested in the awesome appearance of a heavenly being (vv.5-6). Daniel was so utterly overwhelmed by the divine vision, that “no strength was left in me” (v.8). The description, “no strength”, is emphatically repeated four times in Daniel’s encounter with God (vv.8, 16, 17). We may not experience such an utterly overwhelming encounter with God like Daniel’s, but we do experience “no strength was left in me” in utterly overwhelming adversities like being “afflicted in every way” (2 Cor 1:8; 4:8-9).When we have “no strength”, we need the divine touch. God responded to Daniel’s fourfold “no strength” with a threefold divine touch (vv.10, 16, 18): He “touched me again and strengthened me”. When we are so greatly afflicted, that we feel no strength is left in us, and yet we persevere in faithfulness, it is because we are being “strengthened with all power, according to His glorious might, for the attaining of great endurance and patience” (Col 1:11). Note the intensity and immensity of this divine power at work in us! This is the divine touch of “the surpassing greatness of power” from God (2 Cor 4:7-9). But we feel the physical and emotional pains more than the Spiritual power. The greater is our suffering, the greater will be the strength from God in us, and the greater will be our steadfastness in God.
Application:

What is my experience of the Word of God and spiritual warfare like in my
discipleship journey?

Prayer:
Write a prayer to God as your response from your meditation on and application of the Scriptures.
Prayer Pointers:
  • Give thanks and praise
  • Pray for Church Board: To know God’s power that is perfected in weaknesses
  • Pray for significant people
  • Pray for those in need
  • Pray for self

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