PILOT KNOB LUTHERAN COMMUNIQUÉ
(Official communication to the public)
Zechariah 13:9: This third I will put into the fire; I will refine them like silver and test them like gold. They will call on my name and I will answer them; I will say, ‘They are my people,’ and they will say, ‘The Lord is our God.’”
Zechariah is talking about the Jewish nation of his time (ca. 480 BC) and how God was working in them to refine their spiritual lives, to be more in tune with God’s ways and to remove the sinful garbage of daily life. He is also looking to the future of 70 AD, the destruction of Jerusalem and beyond. Within the history of Israel there was always a falling away from God and recurring judgment. However, there was also a remnant of faithful people holding to and holding out the truth.
The remnant is referred to as the ‘third’; a small group which God would work with and use to share and live the truth as the nation continued to turn away from God.
Today much of America is turning away from God and embracing a pseudo-Christianity; that is someone who appears to have faith in Christ but empty within. This is typical as we continue to live in the end times. However, as a follower of Jesus Christ we are part of God’s global faithful remnant. As we hold on to Jesus and he holds on to us life will not be easy street.
What does Zechariah say? The Lord will bring them through the fire and make them pure just as gold and silver are refined and purified by fire. I was burned with fire when I was in fifth grade spending ten days in the hospital and it was not pleasant. Scripture refers to a refiner’s fire. The process then of refining silver and gold was to place the ore in a tightly sealed clay jar and ‘placed in a fired kiln for five days. During this time the dross stuck to the sides of the container while the pure gold collected in its center.” (TEBC. Vol 7, pg. 687)
God is not interested in sunny day followers or half-hearted commitments, any more than you or I would be interested in a gold ore ring. It would look very unbecoming and foolish if it were fashioned from gold and impurities not to mention it would be worthless.
Just because we love God and he loves us does not guarantee the absence of hard trials disappointments and troubles. These are the fires of refinement. Remember who is going through it with us, God himself.
James 1:2-3 Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.
By the Way:
Wednesday 6, 3:00 Confirmation.
Sunday 10, 9:00 Morning worship and Annual meeting following the service. Sermon: Facing Opposition, Ezra 4:1-23
No Sunday school
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