Happy Friday! My study of Israel's exile continues. I will not be posting weekly, as done last year, but wanted to share the below with you for your encouragement. Grace and peace to you today in Christ!
God’s Fame in Israel’s Deliverance
God’s purposes in Israel's exodus were multifaceted. He acts out of concern for His people (Exodus 3:7) and in faithfulness to His promises to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob (Exodus 6:8). He also acts for the renown of His own name. Consider His words to Pharaoh in Exodus 9:15-16: “By now I could have stretched out my hand and struck you and your people with a plague, and you would have been obliterated from the earth. However, I have let you live for this purpose: to show you my power and to make my name known on the whole earth.” God preserves cruel Pharaoh/Egypt so that His power to save Israel might be known among the watching nations. Rahab’s words in Joshua 2:8-11 tells us that this plan comes to pass.
God’s Fame in Israel’s Judgement
God’s regard for the spread of His name among the nations was central in His deliverance and blessing of Israel. In the book of Daniel, we find that the judgement and destruction of His people does not hinder this plan. Judah’s exile becomes a useful setting for the dramatic display of God’s wisdom, power and glory in Babylon. In Israel's captivity, God shows that He is the revealer of mysteries (Daniel 2:46-49); the Most High God (Daniel 3:26); the Sovereign God who lifts up and brings low (Daniel 4:28-37; 5:24-31); and the Living God who controls creation (Daniel 6:25-28).
Consider here the words of Daniel 6:25-26: "Then King Darius wrote to those of every people, nation, and language who live on the whole earth: ‘I issue a decree that in all my royal dominion, people must tremble in fear before the God of Daniel: For he is the living God, and he endures forever; his kingdom will never be destroyed, and his dominion has no end." Whether in Israel’s deliverance or in her judgement, God’s glory is made known to the watching nations!
A God After His Own Fame
When sinful men and women seek their own glory, we call it narcissism; when they seek God’s glory, the Bible calls it right. John 7:18 states: “The one who speaks for himself seeks his own glory. But He who seeks the glory of the One who sent Him is true, and there is no unrighteousness in Him.” God’s passion to spread His name is grace, not narcissism. Remember that salvation belongs to God alone for there is no other name under heaven given to people by which they must be saved (Acts 4:12). God is worthy of fame -- and the spreading of His name can lead to the repentance and salvation of sinners (Joshua 2:8-11). Sister, let your passion for God's fame mirror God's own passion for His glorious fame!
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