May 30: In Season and Out of Season
1 Chronicles 26:1–27:34; 2 Timothy 4:1–8; Psalm 89:23–52
I like to operate when I feel like I’m in control. When I haven’t gathered enough information or I feel uncertain of my circumstances, it’s tempting to avoid making a decision or taking action.
Paul knew that this type of outlook was detrimental to Timothy’s ministry. He tells Timothy that regardless of his circumstances, he was required to act: “Preach the word, be ready in season and out of season, reprove, rebuke, exhort, with all patience and instruction” (2 Tim 4:2).
Paul uses the certainty of Christ’s return to motivate Timothy to stick to his task (2 Tim 4:1). Although Timothy experienced times when it was not always convenient for him to act on his calling, he had been admonished by Paul about the importance of the work they were doing together: their calling. He also knew the urgency of that calling. Christ’s return and the appearance of His kingdom was their motivation (2 Tim 4:1).
We can’t follow God only when the timing is right for us. We also can’t rely on our own strength. When doing God’s work, we can never plan well enough or anticipate all the potential kinks; our plans will never be foolproof. It’s not the mark of a Christian to be certain of how everything will play out in every circumstance. The mark of a Christian is reliance on Christ as Savior, God, and guide. Through the clear and calm and through the fog, we’re required to trust, act, and follow on the basis of our certainty in Jesus. Like Timothy and Paul, we must be certain of our standing in Christ and the coming of His kingdom. And that changes everything.
Whatever the task and in every circumstance, we’re required to simply follow Jesus. We are charged to act for the gospel now, regardless of whether it’s convenient.
How are you trusting in your own strength instead of Jesus’? How can you be ready in the right way, in every season?
REBECCA VAN NOORD
- Concerning the divisions of the porters, of the Korahites, Meshelemiah the son of Kore of the sons of Asaph. And the sons of Meshelemiah, Zechariah the eldest, Jediael the second, Zebadiah the third, Jathniel the fourth, Elam the fifth, Jehohanan the sixth, and Eliehoenai the seventh. And the sons of Obed-Edom, Shemaiah the eldest, Jehozabad the second, Joah the third, and Sacar the fourth, and Nethanel the fifth. Ammiel the sixth, Issachar the seventh, Peulthai the eight: for God had blessed him. And to Shemaiah his sons of Obed-Edom, they and their sons and their brethren mighty and strong to serve, even threescore and two of Obed-Edom. And of Meshelemiah sons and brethren, eighteen mighty men. And of Hosah of the sons of Merari, the sons were Shimri the chief, and (though he was not the eldest, yet his father made him the chief) Hilkiah the second, Tebaliah the third, and Zechariah the fourth: all the sons and the brethren of Hosah were thirteen. Of these were the divisions of the porters, of the chief men, having the charge against their brethren, to serve in the house of the Lord. And they cast lots both small and great, for the house of their fathers, for every gate. And the lot on the East side fell to Shelemiah: then they cast lots for Zechariah his son a wise counselor, and his lot came out Northward: To Obed-Edom Southward, and to his sons the house of Asuppim: To Shuppim and to Hosah Westward with the gate of Shallecheth by the paved street that goeth upward, ward over against ward. Eastward were six Levites, and Northward four a day, and Southward four a day, and toward Assupin two and two. In Parbar toward the West were four by the paved street, and two in Parbar. These are the divisions of the porters of the sons of Korah, and of the sons of Merari. And of the Levites. Ahijah was over the treasures of the house of God, and over the treasures of the dedicate things. Of the sons of Laban the sons of the Gershonites descending of Laadan, the chief fathers of Moses, a ruler over the treasures. And of his brethren which came of Eliezer, was Rahabiah his son, and Jeshaiah his son, and Joram his son, and Zichi his son, and Shelomith his sons. Which Shelomith and his brethren were over all the treasures of the dedicat things, which David the king, and the chief fathers, the captains over thousands, and hundreds, and the captains of the army had dedicated. (For of the battles and of the spoils they did dedicate to maintain the house of the Lord.) And all that Samuel the Seer had dedicated, and Saul the son of Kish, and Abner the son of Ner, and Joab the son of Zeruiah, and whosoever had dedicated anything, it was under the hand of Shelomith, and his brethren. Of the Izharites was Chenaniah and his sons, for the business without over Israel, for officers and for Judges. Of the Hebronites, Hashabiah and his brethren, men of activity, a thousand and seven hundred were officers for Israel beyond Jordan Westward in all the business of the Lord, and for the service of the King. Among the Hebronites was Jerijah the chiefest, even the Hebronites by his generations according to the families. And in the fortieth year of the reign of David they were sought for: and there was found among them men of activity at Jazer in Gilead. And his brethren men of activity, two thousand and seven hundred chief fathers, whom King David made rulers over the Reubenites, and the Gadites, and the half tribe of Manasseh, for every matter pertaining to God, and for the king’s business. The children of Israel also offer their number, even the chief fathers and captains of thousands, and of hundreds, and their officers that served the king by diverse courses, which came in and went out, month by month throughout all the months of the year: in every course were four and twenty thousand. Over the first course for the first month was Jashobeam the son of Zabdiel: and in his course were four and twenty thousand. Of the sons of Perez, was the chief over all the princes of the armies for the first month. And over the course of the second month was Dodai an Ahobite, and this was his course, and Mikloth was a captain, and in his course were four and twenty thousand. The captain of the third host for the third month was Benaiah the son of Jehoiada the chief Priest: and in his course were four and twenty thousand. This Benaiah was mighty among thirty and above the thirty, and in his course was Ammizabad his son. The fourth for the fourth month was Asahel the brother of Joab, and Zebadiah his son after him: and in his course werefour and twenty thousand. The fifth for the fifth month was prince Shamhuth the Izrahite: and in his course four and twenty thousand. The sixth for the sixth month was Ira the son of Ikkesh the Tekoite: and in his course four and twenty thousand. The seventh for the seventh month was Helez the Pelonite, of the sons of Ephraim: and in his course four and twenty thousand. The eighth for the eight month was Sibbechai the Hushathite of the Zarhites: and in his course four and twenty thousand. The ninth for the ninth month was Abiezer the Anathothite of the sons of Jemmi: and in his course four and twenty thousand. The tenth for the tenth month was Maharai the Netophathite of the Zarhites: and in his course four and twenty thousand. The eleventh for the eleventh month was Benaiah the Pirathonite of the sons Ephraim: and in his course four and twenty thousand. The twefth for the twelfth month was Heldai the Netophathite, of Othniel: and in his course four and twenty thousand. Moreover the rulers over the tribes of Israel were these: over the Reubenites was ruler, Eliezer the son of Zichri: over the Simeonites, Shephatiah the son of Maachah: Over the Levites, Hashabiah the son of Kemuel: over them of Aaron, and Zadok: Over Judah, Elihu of the brethren of David: over Issachar, Omri the son of Michael: Over Zebulun, Ishmaiah the son of Obadiah: over Naphtali, Jerimoth the son of Azriel: Over the sons of Ephraim, Hoshea the son of Azaziah: over the half tribe of Manasseh, Joel the son of Pedaiah: Over the other half of Manasseh in Gilead, Iddo the son of Zechariah: over Benjamin, Jaasiel the son of Abner: Over Dan, Azarel the son of Jeroham. These are the princes of the tribes of Israel. But David took not the number of them from twenty years old and under, because the Lord had said that he would increase Israel like unto the stars of the heavens. And Joab the son of Zeruiah began to number: but he finished it not, because there came wrath for it against Israel: neither was the number put into the Chronicles of king David. And over the king’s treasures was Azmaveth the son of Adiel: and over the treasures in the fields, in the cities and in the villages, and in the towers was Jehonathan the son of Uzziah: And over the workmen in the field that tilleth the ground, was Ezri the son of Chelub: And over them that dressed the vines, was Shimei the Ramathite: and over that which appertained to the vines, and over the store of the wine was Zabdi the Shiphmite: And over the olive trees and mulberry trees that were in the valley, was Baal-Hanan the Gederite: and over the store of the oil was Joash: And over the oxen that fed in Sharon, was Shitrai the Sharonite: and over the oxen in the valleys was Shaphat the son of Adlai: And over the camels was Obil the Ishmaelite: And over the sheep was Jaziz the Hagrite: all these were the rulers of the substance that was king David’s. And Jehonathan David’s uncle a man of counsel and understanding (for he was a scribe) and Jehiel the son of Hachmoni were with the King’s sons. And Ahithophel was the king’s counselor, and Hushai the Archite the king’s friend. And after Ahithophel was Jehoiada the son of Benaiah and Abiathar: and captain of the King’s army was Joab . 1 Chronicles 26:1–27:34
- I Charge thee therefore before God, and before the Lord Jesus Christ, which shall judge the quick and dead at that his appearing, and in his kingdom, Preach the word: be instant, in season, and out of season: improve, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. For the time will come when they will not endure wholesome doctrine: but having their ears itching, shall after their own lusts get them an heap of tearchers, And shall turn their ears from the truth, and shall be given unto fables. But watch thou in all things: suffer adversity: do the work of an Evangelist: cause thy ministry to be thoroughly liked of. For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departing is at hand. I have fought a good fight, and have finished my course: I have kept the faith. For henceforth is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord the righteous Judge shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love that his appearing. 2 Timothy 4:1–8
- But I will destroy his foes before his face, and plague them that hate him. My truth also and my mercy shall be with him, and in my Name shall his horn be exalted. I will set his hands also in the sea, and his right hand in the floods. He shall cry unto me, Thou art my Father, my God, and the rock of my salvation. Also I will make him my firstborn, higher than the kings of the earth. My mercy will I keep for him for evermore, and my Covenant shall stand fast with him. His seed also will I make to endure forever, and his throne as the days of heaven. But if his children forsake thy Law, and walk not in my judgements: If they break my statutes, and keep not my commandments: Then will I visit their transgression with the rod, and their iniquity with strokes. Yet my loving kindness will I not take from him, neither will I falsify my truth. My Covenant will I not break, nor alter the thing that is gone out of my lips. I have sworn once by mine holiness, that I will not fail David, saying, His seed shall endure forever, and his throne shall be as the sun before me. He shall be established for evermore as the moon, and as a faithful witness in the heaven. Selah. But thou hast rejected and abhorred, thou hast been angry with thine anointed. Thou hast broken the Covenant of thy servant, and profaned his crown, casting it on the ground. Thou hast broken down all his walls: thou hast laid his fortresses in ruin. All that go by the way, spoil him: he is a rebuke unto his neighbors. Thou hast set up the right hand of his enemies, and made all his adversaries to rejoice. Thou hast also turned the edge of his sword, and hast not made him to stand in the battle. Thou hast caused his dignity to decay, and cast his throne to the ground. The days of his youth hast thou shortened, and covered him with shame. Selah. Lord, how long wilt thou hide thyself, forever? shall thy wrath burn like fire? Remember of what time I am: wherefore shouldest thou create in vain all the children of men? What man liveth, and shall not see death? shall he deliver his soul from the hand of the grave? Selah. Lord, where are thy former mercies, which thou swarest unto David in thy truth? Remember, O Lord, the rebue of thy servants, which I bear in my bosom of all the mighty people. For thine enemies have reproached thee, O Lord, because they have reproached the footsteps of the Anointed. Praised be the Lord for evermore: So be it, even so be it. Psalm 89:23–52