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Let’s Read – God Is Truth and Righteousness by T.O.D. Johnston
6 ¶ Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near:
7 let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.
8 For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD.
9 For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.
10 ¶ For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater:
11 so shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.
12 ¶ For ye shall go out with joy, and be led forth with peace: the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.
He created man for a companion and the crown of His creation. He gave man His Word when He created him, that his years might be prolonged – Deuteronomy 6 – that he might enjoy all the abundance of the earth and it be his dominion. Man gave in to the temptation to test God; to see if what God’s Word said was Truth. Satan sowed seeds of doubt. Through Adam’s going against God’s Word, death, decay, and suffering were brought into the world.
The Old Testament is a history of God’s dealing with man. Giving man His Word – through His prophets to warn them of the wages of sin. That if they would turn to God in true repentance and follow His Word, He could bless them with prolonged, abundant life, in the land of milk and honey. The Old Testament is a history of man’s perversity and stiffneckedness, with flashes of light and glory each time even one man puts his faith and trust in the Lord.
The Lord God, the Lord of Hosts, the Eternal One, is unchanging from everlasting to everlasting, and mighty in His power. He is the Creator of the heavens, the earth, the sea and all that is in them. He is just and righteous, and man is born in sin and selfishness.
Only through God’s tender mercy did man have a chance for survival – to be saved from certain self-destruction. Immeasurable is His love for His creation – inconceivable is His compassion, knowing that no man could meet the requirements of His righteousness, His Law. He sent His Own Son to fulfill in complete righteousness the Law and Will of God. He revealed to worldly man that greater are the rewards in eternal life than the shadows and fleeting pleasures of earth without God.
Only when the demands of the Law had been met through Christ could God pour out His blessings on men. God is holy and can have naught to do with us – for we are conceived in sin. God took upon Himself the payment the Law demanded through Christ Jesus. It is through this consideration of the ministry of love and compassion, the anguish, suffering, and death of the only begotten Son of God that the price was paid in shame, pain, blood, and death.
But it ended not there – it was instead a new beginning – resurrection unto glorified eternal life with the Father. Christ died that we might have life, and more abundantly – to reveal the true nature of Our Heavenly Father – to release us from the bondage of sin and death.
We were born into selfish desires and we have tried to satisfy ourselves all our lives – at some point we reach a crisis, where we finally realize that satisfying self leaves an emptiness like a cold, dark, pit. We cannot make it by ourselves. And through our confronting the Word – whether by hearing, or reading, or a witness, the Holy Spirit draws us to the love of Jesus Christ, and forgiveness for our totally sinful past.
In repenting, we turn from self to God. Then, in the Light, Life, and Truth of Jesus we are washed clean and made new creatures. We worship with thanksgiving for His Grace, His Mercy. Praise be to God in the Highest.
Now free from the bondage of sin, we are free to worship God with our lives. We are free to begin to keep the Law by serving God and our neighbors.
T.O.D. Johnston was licensed to preach the Gospel by Paran Baptist Church in Lake City, SC on May 26, 1979. He has been a student of Scripture since 1972.
We hope you enjoyed this Bible study lesson by T.O.D. Johnston.
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