The Agora
Daily Bible Reading Exhortations

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March 1

Other comments on this day's readings can be found here.

Reading 1 - Lev 6:13

"The fire must be kept burning on the altar continuously; it must not go out" (Lev 6:13).

The altar is the place where offerings are made to God, and since the only true offerings are those which are made in spirit and truth (Joh 4:24), therefore -- in a sense -- the only true "altar" is the human heart. This heart is a great altar indeed, and here -- in my heart --the fire of divine love must be kept burning continuously.

God loves to see the hearts of His people glowing towards Himself. Let us give to God our hearts (Pro 23:26), all blazing with love, and seek His grace, that the fire may never be quenched; for it will not burn if the Lord does not keep it burning. Many foes and circumstances will contrive to extinguish it, so that its fire will grow cold (Rev 2:4); but if the unseen hand of the priest continues to replenish the fuel, and renew the sacrifices, it will blaze higher and higher. Let us use the Scriptures as fuel for our heart's fire, so that our offerings will rise up to Yahweh as a sweet savor. May He touch our lips, and our heart, with burning coals -- as He did with Isaiah (Isa 6:6,7).

Reading 2 - Psa 105:8

"He remembers his covenant forever, the word he commanded, for a thousand generations" (Psa 105:8).

Compare Exo 20:6: "And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments." Should this read "unto thousands", or -- as in Psa 105:8,9 -- "unto a thousand generations"? Notice the italics in the KJV of Exo 20:5: "generations" is added there, by the translators, to give the sense; and so it probably should be here also. At any rate, Psa 105:8,9 (and Psa 103:17,18; Deu 7:9; 1Ch 16:15; Isa 51:8; and Luk 1:50) give us reason to add this word.

But is not "a thousand generations" a gross exaggeration? By any reckoning, there cannot have been more than about 300 total generations since Adam.

True, unless these passages mean spiritual "generations" in Christ, which can be "begotten" in rapid succession. A natural generation cannot be much less than 20 years, but a spiritual "generation" can be as little as days or weeks. The enthusiastic convert to the truth in Christ loses no time in converting a friend or relative to the same faith. And so on, and so on, until God's mercy has been shown indeed to a thousand such "generations"!

Reading 3 - 1Co 14:20

"Brothers, stop thinking like children. In regard to evil be infants, but in your thinking be adults" (1Co 14:20).

"God's professed people -- presumed heirs and rulers of the world to come -- wasting their precious time and attention on the world's baby-toys is like a pitiful lunatic millionaire picking through the garbage, mentally incapable of comprehending or enjoying his vast riches" (GV Growcott).
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