July 23

1 Chronicles 17:20 (NIV) 20"There is no one like you, O LORD, and there is no God but you, as we have heard with our own ears.

David is told that God is the One who will build a house for David, not David for God. God promised to have David's descendent reign forever. That descendent is Jesus, the son of David. I doubt David understood all the implications of what God spoke to him. We rarely do. Still, even in our limited and sometimes faulty understanding, we are in awe that the Creator of the universe would bother with us and even honor us so. Perhaps David thought of an earthly dynasty. That would have been wonderful enough. But I don't think he could have conceived that the Son of God would be born through his line to bring salvation to all mankind.

There is no one like God. He is the only God. He is the only One who could make such an amazing promise and fulfill it in ways beyond David's comprehension. He is more wonderful than we can perceive. Our understanding of Him is always limited, for He is infinite. Our appreciation will always fall short.

Whatever your situation or need, know that God is more than sufficient. He can work in ways you cannot understand. When Judah went into captivity, they must have wondered what happened to these promises. God was still keeping them.

Consider: In our darkest nights, we can know God is still on the throne of heaven working all things together for our good and His eternal glory.

July 23

Acts 8:26, 30-31 (NIV) 26Now an angel of the Lord said to Philip, "Go south to the road–the desert road–that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza."

30Then Philip ran up to the chariot and heard the man reading Isaiah the prophet. "Do you understand what you are reading?" Philip asked. 31"How can I," he said, "unless someone explains it to me?" So he invited Philip to come up and sit with him.

Philip had great success while preaching in Samaria. Then an angel of the Lord spoke to him, sending him the opposite direction. That is unique. Philip had been a deacon in Jerusalem. One of the requirements for his assignment was that he was filled with the Spirit. Why did Philip need a special messenger from God? We can only speculate. Sometimes success will deaden our ears from hearing the Spirit direct us in another way. That doesn't mean that God cannot get through to us. I find it encouraging that God got through to Philip even when he may not have been able to hear the gentle leading of the Spirit.

On the road to which he was sent, he saw a chariot with an Ethiopian convert to Judaism. Running alongside, he heard the man reading from Isaiah 53. Philip knew this passage spoke as clearly as any about the life and work of his Savior, Jesus. The Ethiopian invited Philip into the chariot to explain it to him.

The Holy Spirit is the great teacher, but He often teaches through people. The Ethiopian needed a human teacher to explain the truth of the Gospel in that passage. Once he understood, he immediately wanted to be baptized. He had probably experienced a water baptism when he converted to Judaism. Now he recognized that he needed to be baptized again in the name of Jesus. Seeing water along the road, he insisted on being baptized then and there. It is believed that this man was the first to bring Christianity to the African Continent. No wonder it was important for Philip to hear the message to go to that road. Philip then suddenly found himself miles to the north in a largely Gentile city.

Consider: God knows how to get us where we need to be to serve Him.