Truth for Life - November 26, 2016

November 26

The Master Builder

For whoever has despised the day of small things shall rejoice, and shall see the plumb line in the hand of Zerubbabel. - Zechariah 4:10

Small things marked the beginning of the work in the hand of Zerubbabel, but none should despise it, for the Lord had raised up one who would persevere until the work was completed with shouts of joy. The plumb line was in good hands. Here is the comfort of every believer in the Lord Jesus. Let the work of grace be ever so small in its beginnings, the plumb line is in good hands. A master builder greater than Solomon has undertaken to raise the heavenly temple, and He will not fail nor be discouraged till the pinnacle shall be raised. If the plumb line were in the hand of any merely human being, we might fear for the building, but the pleasure of the Lord will prosper in Jesus' hand.

The works did not proceed irregularly and without care, for the master's hand carried a good instrument. If the walls had been built in a hurry without proper supervision, they might have been out of line; but the plumb line was used by the chosen overseer. Jesus is always watching the construction of His spiritual temple, to ensure that it is built securely and well. We are for speed, but Jesus is for judgment. He will use the plumb line, and that which is out of line must come down, every stone of it. This explains the failure of many a flattering work, the overthrow of many a glittering profession. It is not for us to judge the Lord's Church, since Jesus has a steady hand and a true eye and can use the plumb line well. Do we not rejoice to see judgment left to Him?

The plumb line was in active use—it was in the builder's hand, a sure indication that he meant to bring the work to completion. Lord Jesus, how glad we would be to see You at Your great work. O Zion, the beautiful, your walls are still in ruins! Rise, glorious Builder, and make her desolations to rejoice at Your coming.

Family Bible reading plan

verse 1 Micah 1

verse 2 Luke 10

Child in the Manger: The True Meaning of Christmas

What is Christmas? For many it is a time for holidays, parties, family gatherings, gifts, meals together, music, and special events. For others it can mean unwanted pressure, an increased sense of loneliness, family squabbles, and crowded shops. For those living in the Northern Hemisphere, Christmas takes place at the onset of winter with its cold weather and short days. There are more incidents of depression at Christmas time than at any other time of the year. It is the best of times for some, but the worst of times for others, to borrow a phrase from Charles Dickens.

The birth of Jesus divided history into two major epochs. Until the dawn of our hyper-sensitive age, even the way we dated events underscored this. From time immemorial, every day, week, month, and year has been described as either “B.C.” (“Before Christ”) or “A.D.” (Anno Domini, “in the year of our Lord”). Even the modern, pluralistic style abbreviations, B.C.E. (“Before the Common Era”) and C.E. (“Common Era”) cannot obliterate the indelible impress of Jesus birth. For what makes the “Common Era” so “common”? And what explains the dividing line date? The answer is the same: the birth of Jesus. At the very center of history stands the person of Jesus Christ. And He does so because He is at the center of God’s story.

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From Morning & Evening revised and edited by Alistair Begg copyright © 2003. Used by permission of Crossway Books, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers, Wheaton, IL 60187, www.crossway.org.

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