Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Dr. Hamilton on losing hands and a loving God

The following excerpt from Dr. Jim Hamilton's book, Revelation: The Spirit Speaks to the Churches, helped me tremendously when I was preparing this post a few nights back. Usually I create a post for my blog in the morning and post it the same day. Occasionally I get the opportunity to pre-write a post and schedule it ahead of time. Such was the case for this post.

And it just so happens that immediately before opening Hamilton's book to extract something edifying to post on the blog, my wife and I were discussing something that this post directly addresses. I was sharing with my wife (whining if you will) about some of the difficulties I was going through with my career change-from playing professional football to teaching at a high school-and articulating some of the resulting frustrations. My perspective lacked faith and was permeated with ingratitude.

And then I read this excerpt which was very challenging, and edifying, and convicting, and faith-engendering:
Do you ever look around your life and feel like God has dealt you a losing hand? If you're a student of the Bible, when you see what looks like a losing hand, you know that God is about to triumph in a way that will give him all the credit for the victory. Isn't that the kind of victory you want? So when everything in your life looks unimpressive, sure to lose, insignificant, trust Christ and watch for the glory of God to be demonstrated.
When you feel like a loser, when you feel like a failure, when you feel like you're incompetent, praise God! You're exactly the kind of person God uses. God uses people like us to defeat the great dragon.
This is precisely what happens when the child is caught up to God and to his throne in 12:5. In verse 4 the dragon is poised to devour the child. God looks like he has the short end of the stick. Satan is a dragon, and God has left this poor pregnant woman and her newborn baby to face the dragon alone. Suddenly victory is snatched from the dragon's jaws as the child is caught up to God and his throne. (249)
Revelation 12:1-5 And a great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars. She was pregnant and was crying out in birth pains and the agony of giving birth. And another sign appeared in heaven: behold, a great red dragon, with seven heads and ten horns, and on his heads seven diadems. His tail swept down a third of the stars of heaven and cast them to the earth. And the dragon stood before the woman who was about to give birth, so that when she bore her child he might devour it. She gave birth to a male child, one who is to rule all the nations with a rod of iron, but her child was caught up to God and to his throne,

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