Dear Lord, strengthen us according to your word. The psalmist’s words reach out to my soul more today than other days. I feel my own needs matching his as he cries out in verse 32, “enlarge his heart”. Today we settle in the “Daleth” stanza, but we will also heed the writer’s words and practice his lessons. We will wander from our main text to the days when Jesus entered Jerusalem during the triumphant entry, his last week, his final days. We will literally practice hiding the words of Jesus in our hearts. In Colossians 3: 1-3, Paul teaches us to “set or hearts on things alone, where Christ is, seated at he right hand of God. Set our minds on things above, not on earthly things.” In order to set our hearts and minds on Christ, we have to let the actual words of Christ dwell within us as suggested by Paul later in this same chapter, “ Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly”. Charles Spurgeon wrote a sermon based on Colossians 3, specifically verse 3:16. His words are beautiful and drenched with wisdom. “In order that (the Word of Christ) may dwell in you, it must first enter into you. You must really know the spiritual meaning of it. You must believe it, live upon it, drink it in – you must let it soak into your innermost being as the dew saturated the fleece of Gideon.”
In your bibles, let’s begin at Luke 19:28, at the entry of Jesus into Jerusalem. Begin there and in your journals make a note of some of Jesus’s words during his final week. Write his literal words and see what you discover. I wrote about a page worth and stopped. It’s strange but personally I’m more familiar with Paul’s words, God’s words in the Old testament, the gospel writers words, but not Jesus’s actual words. After today, I’m going to begin taking Paul and Charles’s words more literal, and focus on the red letter words of Christ, maybe even purchase a red letter bible.
Which words of Jesus most affected you in the readings? For me, Jesus spoke twice about sitting at the right side of God’s throne in heaven. I have images of his throne in my mind, but I never really thought about it’s significance til reading this text. In the old testament, the right side is mentioned over 100 times. Even Moses when he consecrated Aaron was instructed by God to place the blood of the ram on Aaron’s right ear, thumb, and toe. “He brought the second ram, the ram of consecration. Then Aaron and his sons laid their hands on the head of the ram, and Moses killed it. Also he took some of its blood and put it on the tip of Aaron’s right ear, on the thumb of his right hand, and on the big toe of his right foot.” The significance is undeniable. In the beginning when humans were first learning to have a relationship with God, he demonstrated the significance of the sacrificial atonement of sin with blood on the right side of our human bodies. How fitting that the ultimate sacrifice for our sins sits at the right hand of God, the culmination of symbolism for his sacrifice. One of Jesus’s last few words on earth, “from now on, the Son of Man will be seated at the right hand of the mighty God.” These are words I will not readily forget, now permanently dwelling in my innermost being.
The spirit rests on us as we discover more in the living word of God. May God bless you on this glorious day.