Hosea 12

Vs. 3, “In the womb he grasped his brother’s heel; as a man he struggled with God.”  Hosea draws on the life of Jacob as he reflects on some of Jacob’s mistakes (vs. 2-6).  Looking back on Jacob’s life, he deceived Esau (Gen 27:35-36), and Israel was now living a lie and cheating others (vs. 7).  The areas of Gilead and Gilgal (vs. 11), were examples of the people turning away from God.  We also are reminded of Jacob’s wresting incident with God and lastly Jacob’s encounter with God at Bethel, remember the stairway to heaven? (Genesis 28 & 35).   And lastly, Hosea reminds us of Moses who was appointed to be the deliverer for God’s people out of Egypt (vs. 13-14)

Regarding application…Waiting on God.  Vs. 6, “But you must return to your God; maintain love and justice, and wait for your God always.”  Sometimes we get impatient and just want to see change right away.  I like how the NLT translation states at the end of vs. 6, “always depend on him.”  When Jacob wrestled with God on the Jabbock river (Gen 32), God would change Jacob’s name to Israel.  There are times when we have to wrestle with who we are and wait patiently on God changing us from the inside out.  Just as we know nothing can separate us from the love of Christ (Romans 8), we must also be persistent and wait/depend on Him in all circumstances.

Hebrews 9

Vs. 14, “How much more, then, will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself unblemished to God, cleanse our consciences from acts that lead to death, so that we may serve the living God.” In the past we have talked about how Jesus is superior to angels, Aaron’s priesthood, the old covenant and now we discuss Jesus being superior over the old sanctuary. The old sanctuary cannot compare with the new sanctuary in Christ. Let’s do a little comparing and contrasting….The first reason is that it was simply on earth (vs. 1), it was a shadow of what is to come (vs. 2-5), it had limited access (vs. 6-7), it was only temporary (vs. 8), and ultimately it could not change the heart condition (vs. 9-10). But the new sanctuary was heavenly (vs. 11), it was the real deal, not a shadow (vs. 23-24), it gave access to all, it is permanent and most certainly can change lives!

Regarding application…Waiting. Vs. 28, “so Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many people; and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him.” When you think about it…we wait for many things in life. We wait in traffic (especially Southern Califonia), we wait in bank lines, we wait in food lines, we wait for class or work to be over, we wait for our favorite food in restaurants, we wait for our favorite television show, podcast or book, we wait for webpages to load, we wait to find a spouse, we wait for children we wait for others to come for an event, etc. Whew~~~and that’s probably just brushing the surface. Especially in a time when we want things NOW…waiting is not such an easy thing to do. I must confess that I don’t particularly like waiting in lines.

When Hyojin & I go to Disneyland, one of the things we know NOT to do is to go on the weekends. The lines are exponentially longer and wait times increase threefold. But if you go on a weekday you can really spoil yourself as you barely have to wait to go on Space Mountain, Soarin, Indiana Jones, etc. My favorite is the Toy Story ride. The point is…let us not grow impatient in this life that we live. Sometimes I find myself longing just to finally be in Heaven and get this crazy life we live on earth completed. But, God has us alive on this earth to do His will. Let us wait patiently but also with an eager excitement for helping everyone else know why we wait with joy!