I enjoyed re-reading Carly’s thoughts form last time, so I thought I’d include them (not that today isn’t already a heavy reading day).
Something which stood out to me in seven, was the extensive use of pomegranates in decorating. Since this piqued my interest, i Wikipedia-ed it, and thought I’d share this tidbit:
“The pomegranate is a Jewish symbol of honesty and correctness, since it would contain 613 seeds, which as many pearls are the 613 prescriptions written in the Torah, (365 prohibitions and 248 obligations) observing which you are certain to keep wise behavior and fair. In reality the seeds of the pomegranate are in variable numbers (certainly about 600), but the fruit with its seeds recalls that number, which like many others, has precise references in Jewish numerology. The pomegranate for its many seeds is a symbol of productivity, wealth and fertility.”
So cool! I love everything in nature which reminds us of God’s design and instruction. It also said, Jewish tradition holds the pomegranate to be the fruit on the Tree of Life.
Now, I want to focus on these parts of eight which, I think, fit together:
“O Lord, God of Israel, there is no God like you, in heaven above or on earth beneath, keeping covenant and showing steadfast love to Your servants who walk before You with all their heart;” (8:23)
There are many characteristics of Our LORD God, the God of Israel, which make Him distinct from other gods. The LORD placed Israel at the crossroads of the earth, where Africa, Asia and Europe met, in order for people to hear about Him.
“When a foreigner, who is not of Your people Israel, comes from a far country for Your name’s sake (for they shall hear of Your great name and Your mighty hand, and of Your outstretched arm), when he comes and prays toward this house, hear in heaven Your dwelling place and do according to all for which the foreigner calls to You, in order that all the peoples of the earth may know Your name and fear You, as do your people Israel, and that they may know that this house that I have built is called by Your name.” (8:41-43)
He is for all people! He may have chosen the people-Israel and the place-Jerusalem to be His heralds and homeland, but He chose them to get His name to everyone.
The God who created all peoples, has taught us His intended designs and instruction for life.
“The Lord our God be with us, as He was with our fathers. May He not leave us or forsake us, that He may incline our hearts to Him, to walk in all His ways and to keep His commandments, His statutes, and His rules, which He commanded our fathers… that all the peoples of the earth may know that the LORD is God; there is no other. Let your heart therefore be wholly true to the LORD our God, walking in His statutes and keeping His commandments, as at this day.” (8:57-58, 60-61)
People will know about Him through our obedience! It is good to remember His laws! Is there something (like a pomegranate) which can remind you of God’s instruction?