Sunday, June 23, 2013

The Sameness of the Moving Sunrise

“Praise the LORD! Praise, O servants of the LORD, praise the name of the LORD. Blessed be the name of the LORD from this time forth and forever. From the rising of the sun to its setting the name of the LORD is to be praised” Psalm 113:1-3).

Two days ago was the summer solstice, the longest day of the year. The sun rose – from my vantage point – far to the left, above the Black Range. Now the days are getting shorter, and the sun will slowly begin rising more and more to the right (south) every day, until it is rising over the foothills to the south of Cookes Peak on the shortest day of the year, the winter solstice (December 21 this year). While we have our minds on today’s schedule of events (gathering with the saints in Christ to glory in His grace and being built up as His Church), and the long list of things that need to be done in the near future, the days will continue getting shorter and shorter, and the sun will rise further and further south. The seasons continue coming and going as they have from the beginning.

There are two ways to live in this knowledge:
  • We can ignore the reality of God’s perfect righteousness, His commands, and the inevitable judgment, treating the cycles of the seasons as our own personal blank slate on which we can do whatever we please: “This is now, beloved, the second letter I am writing to you in which I am stirring up your sincere mind by way of reminder, that you should remember the words spoken beforehand by the holy prophets and the commandment of the Lord and Savior spoken by your apostles. Know this first of all, that in the last days mockers will come with their mocking, following after their own lusts, and saying, ‘Where is the promise of His coming? For ever since the fathers fell asleep, all continues just as it was from the beginning of creation’” (2 Peter 3:1-4).
  • We can be reminded by the changing days and seasons that the pressing things of this moment are of this moment, and are not ultimate. It is the state of the soul before the eternal God and under the authority of His Word that lasts past solstice after solstice: “ have been born again not of seed which is perishable but imperishable, that is, through the living and enduring word of God. For, ‘ALL FLESH IS LIKE GRASS, AND ALL ITS GLORY LIKE THE FLOWER OF GRASS. THE GRASS WITHERS, AND THE FLOWER FALLS OFF, BUT THE WORD OF THE LORD ENDURES FOREVER [a quote from Isaiah 40:7,8].’ And this is the word which was preached to you” (1 Peter 1:23-25).

Today’s Psalm issues this command: “From the rising of the sun to its setting the name of the LORD is to be praised” (113:3). Every day of every season of every year while you are here, in growing obedience to His Word, by faith in the Son, in the power of the Spirit, to the glory of the Father – as long as it is still called “today.”

See you at the gathering.
June 2013 sunrise near the Black Range,
through the smoke of the Silver Fire.

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