Other comments on this day's readings can be found here.
Reading 1 - Num 13:30,31
"Then Caleb silenced the people before Moses and said, 'We
should go up and take possession of the land, for we can certainly do it.' But
the men who had gone up with him said, 'We can't attack those people; they are
stronger than we are' " (Num 13:30,31).
Men of faith, even though they have not as yet received God's
promises, may with the eye of faith see that fulfillment, even when it is "far
off". Then in spirit they "receive" those promises to themselves, and "embrace"
them, and act as though they are already theirs (Heb 11:13).
Ten men who failed to see God saw cities impregnably
Two men, looking "far off" to God, saw doom for those cities
Ten men who failed to see God saw giants frightfully
Two men, looking "far off" to God, saw giants as grasshoppers
Ten men who failed to see God reported, "We're certain to
Two men, looking "far off" to God, cried, "Up! for with God we
Ten men who failed to see God discouraged their brother
Two men perceived God everywhere; are you of the two -- or the
Reading 2 - Pro 8:1
"Does not wisdom call out? Does not understanding raise her
voice?" (Pro 8:1).
"We have found the 'Truth': the saving Gospel of the Kingdom
of God and the things concerning the Name of Jesus Christ. That is fine. That is
indeed vital (and let us make sure we always HAVE it, and not just HAD it. The
mind is leaky. We must keep refreshing and replenishing it). But, have we found
THE truth? Have we 'gone on to perfection' -- to completion? -- right to the
heart and core of the matter? 'He that loseth his life shall save it'... 'A man
must forsake all he has to be my disciple.' Have we 'lost' our (natural) life,
and forsaken all of it? -- total submission, total self-emptying, total
yielding, total humility, total devotion, total service, total love, TOTAL
'peace with God'? This is what God gently, reasonably, lovingly asks of us. Do
we love Him enough to give it? This is what 'love' means. Is it worth it? Is
eternity worth that much effort and application? Can we give less than all, and
safely presume on God's 'mercy' -- or that hopefully He will not notice that we
are selfishly 'keeping back part of the price'? Human beings are congenital
gamblers: that is part of the ingrained 'works of the flesh'. But are not the
stakes here a little too high, the risks a little too great? Doth not wisdom cry
a warning?" (GVG).
Reading 3 - Luk 22:14,15
"When the hour came, Jesus and his apostles reclined at the
table. And he said to them, 'I have eagerly desired to eat this Passover with
you before I suffer' " (Luk 22:14,15).
"What the disciples could not know is that even while he
encompassed them in this simple memorial, his eyes were lifted beyond them down
the years that were to be; towards disciples gathered in caves with Roman
soldiers dogging their steps; towards men and women dying in the mountains with
his Name upon their lips; towards a faithful remnant struggling to keep the
faith in a closing age of folly and darkness. He saw countless disciples down
the years and over the world, humble disciples who lived and died unknown. He
saw them living out their little lives with their hopes and their fears, their
struggles and their failures, their prayers and their victories. He came quietly
to them with his invitation, 'With desire I have desired to eat this Passover
with you before I suffer.' And in humble earnestness had come their answer,
'With desire we desire to meet at thy table, Lord.' And so obediently they came,
they remembered, they loved, they went back to their tasks inspired by his
presence, resolved to struggle on. Eventually they died, faithful to the end,
not having received the promise but having seen it afar off" (Melva Purkis,
"Life of Jesus" 322,323).