with a daily devotion
Morning Meditations for March 3
Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.—PROV. 3:5,6.
Trust in him at all times; ye people, pour out your heart before him: God is a refuge for us.
I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with mine eye. Be ye not as the horse, or as the mule, which have no understanding: whose mouth must be held in with bit and bridle, lest they come near unto thee. Many sorrows shall be to the wicked: but he that trusteth in the Lord, mercy shall compass him about.—Thine ears shall hear a word behind thee, saying, This is the way, walk ye in it, when ye turn to the right hand, and when ye turn to the left.
If thy presence go not with me, carry us not up hence. For wherein shall it be known here that I and thy people have found grace in thy sight? is it not in that thou goest with us? so shall we be separated, I and thy people, from all the people that are upon the face of the earth.
“I have chosen thee in the furnace of affliction.”
Comfort thyself, tried believer, with this thought: God saith, “I have chosen thee in the furnace of affliction.” Does not the word come like a soft shower, assuaging the fury of the flame? Yea, is it not an asbestos armour, against which the heat hath no power? Let affliction come—God has chosen me. Poverty, thou mayst stride in at my door, but God is in the house already, and he has chosen me. Sickness, thou mayst intrude, but I have a balsam ready—God has chosen me. Whatever befalls me in this vale of tears, I know that he has “chosen” me. If, believer, thou requirest still greater comfort, remember that you have the Son of Man with you in the furnace. In that silent chamber of yours, there sitteth by your side One whom thou hast not seen, but whom thou lovest; and ofttimes when thou knowest it not, he makes all thy bed in thy affliction, and smooths thy pillow for thee. Thou art in poverty; but in that lovely house of thine the Lord of life and glory is a frequent visitor. He loves to come into these desolate places, that he may visit thee. Thy friend sticks closely to thee. Thou canst not see him, but thou mayst feel the pressure of his hands. Dost thou not hear his voice? Even in the valley of the shadow of death he says, “Fear not, I am with thee; be not dismayed, for I am thy God.” Remember that noble speech of Caesar: “Fear not, thou carriest Caesar and all his fortune.” Fear not, Christian; Jesus is with thee. In all thy fiery trials, his presence is both thy comfort and safety. He will never leave one whom he has chosen for his own. “Fear not, for I am with thee,” is his sure word of promise to his chosen ones in the “furnace of affliction.” Wilt thou not, then, take fast hold of Christ, and say—
“Through floods and flames, if Jesus lead,
I'll follow where he goes.”
Judgment on Egypt
1The word of the Lord that came to Jeremiah the prophet concerning the nations.
2About Egypt. Concerning the army of Pharaoh Neco, king of Egypt, which was by the river Euphrates at Carchemish and which Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon defeated in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah:
3“Prepare buckler and shield,
and advance for battle!
4Harness the horses;
mount, O horsemen!
Take your stations with your helmets,
polish your spears,
put on your armor!
5Why have I seen it?
They are dismayed
and have turned backward.
Their warriors are beaten down
and have fled in haste;
they look not back—
terror on every side!
declares the Lord.
6“The swift cannot flee away,
nor the warrior escape;
in the north by the river Euphrates
they have stumbled and fallen.
7“Who is this, rising like the Nile,
like rivers whose waters surge?
8Egypt rises like the Nile,
like rivers whose waters surge.
He said, ‘I will rise, I will cover the earth,
I will destroy cities and their inhabitants.’
9Advance, O horses,
and rage, O chariots!
Let the warriors go out:
men of Cush and Put who handle the shield,
men of Lud, skilled in handling the bow.
10That day is the day of the Lord God of hosts,
a day of vengeance,
to avenge himself on his foes.
The sword shall devour and be sated
and drink its fill of their blood.
For the Lord God of hosts holds a sacrifice
in the north country by the river Euphrates.
11Go up to Gilead, and take balm,
O virgin daughter of Egypt!
In vain you have used many medicines;
there is no healing for you.
12The nations have heard of your shame,
and the earth is full of your cry;
for warrior has stumbled against warrior;
they have both fallen together.”
13The word that the Lord spoke to Jeremiah the prophet about the coming of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon to strike the land of Egypt:
14“Declare in Egypt, and proclaim in Migdol;
proclaim in Memphis and Tahpanhes;
say, ‘Stand ready and be prepared,
for the sword shall devour around you.’
15Why are your mighty ones face down?
They do not stand11Hebrew He does not stand
because the Lord thrust them down.
16He made many stumble, and they fell,
and they said one to another,
‘Arise, and let us go back to our own people
and to the land of our birth,
because of the sword of the oppressor.’
17Call the name of Pharaoh, king of Egypt,
‘Noisy one who lets the hour go by.’
18“As I live, declares the King,
whose name is the Lord of hosts,
like Tabor among the mountains
and like Carmel by the sea, shall one come.
19Prepare yourselves baggage for exile,
O inhabitants of Egypt!
For Memphis shall become a waste,
a ruin, without inhabitant.
20“A beautiful heifer is Egypt,
but a biting fly from the north has come upon her.
21Even her hired soldiers in her midst
are like fattened calves;
yes, they have turned and fled together;
they did not stand,
for the day of their calamity has come upon them,
the time of their punishment.
22“She makes a sound like a serpent gliding away;
for her enemies march in force
and come against her with axes
like those who fell trees.
23They shall cut down her forest,
declares the Lord,
though it is impenetrable,
because they are more numerous than locusts;
they are without number.
24The daughter of Egypt shall be put to shame;
she shall be delivered into the hand of a people from the north.”
25The Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, said: “Behold, I am bringing punishment upon Amon of Thebes, and Pharaoh and Egypt and her gods and her kings, upon Pharaoh and those who trust in him. 26I will deliver them into the hand of those who seek their life, into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon and his officers. Afterward Egypt shall be inhabited as in the days of old, declares the Lord.
27“But fear not, O Jacob my servant,
nor be dismayed, O Israel,
for behold, I will save you from far away,
and your offspring from the land of their captivity.
Jacob shall return and have quiet and ease,
and none shall make him afraid.
28Fear not, O Jacob my servant,
declares the Lord,
for I am with you.
I will make a full end of all the nations
to which I have driven you,
but of you I will not make a full end.
I will discipline you in just measure,
and I will by no means leave you unpunished.”
Zion, the City of Our God
A Song. A Psalm of the Sons of Korah.
1Great is the Lord and greatly to be praised
in the city of our God!
His holy mountain, 2beautiful in elevation,
is the joy of all the earth,
Mount Zion, in the far north,
the city of the great King.
3Within her citadels God
has made himself known as a fortress.
4For behold, the kings assembled;
they came on together.
5As soon as they saw it, they were astounded;
they were in panic; they took to flight.
6Trembling took hold of them there,
anguish as of a woman in labor.
7By the east wind you shattered
the ships of Tarshish.
8As we have heard, so have we seen
in the city of the Lord of hosts,
in the city of our God,
which God will establish forever. Selah
9We have thought on your steadfast love, O God,
in the midst of your temple.
10As your name, O God,
so your praise reaches to the ends of the earth.
Your right hand is filled with righteousness.
11Let Mount Zion be glad!
Let the daughters of Judah rejoice
because of your judgments!
12Walk about Zion, go around her,
number her towers,
13consider well her ramparts,
go through her citadels,
that you may tell the next generation
14that this is God,
our God forever and ever.
He will guide us forever.11Septuagint; another reading is (compare Jerome, Syriac) He will guide us beyond death