Seek and read from the book of the LORD - Isaiah 34:16a (ESV)
It was Harold's birthday but he wasn't enjoying the day at all. Not only had he forgot to prepare for it and spent the night before trying to figure things out, he had slept through most of it as result. To make matters worse his family took of to celebrate with out him and after he barely made it to the pet store before it closed, he got put out for wanting a pet skunk.
After being put out of the pet store, Harold became determined to learn more about skunks and where he would be able to get one before his birthday was over. Jumping back on his bike he headed to the one place he figured would have the answers – the library. “I'll get my skunk yet.” he said as he pulled the library door open but the door didn't open. Hanging in the window next to the door was a sign that said closed.
With his head drooped, Harold slowly peddled home. “What a lousy birthday!” He said when he pulled into the driveway and threw his bike down right where his dad would back over it in the morning. Grabbing what was left of his birthday cake and a half gallon of ice cream, Harold headed to his room and didn't come out until morning.
“Nothing could be worse than yesterday.” Harold thought we he arose the next morning but he was quite wrong. For starters too much ice cream the night before had left him with a stomach ache and when he went to hop on his bike to go back to the library he found that leaving it the middle of the driveway was not a good idea as his bike now lay in a heap of crumpled metal.
Determined to learn more about skunks Harold walked all the way to the library. Twice he tried taking short cuts but both times he was chased and than bit by big black dogs. Once in the library he was almost over whelmed by the amount of books. Once he found the aisle of animal books he started going through the shelves throwing the books on the floor as he went so he would know where he'd been.
When he finally found a book on skunks he quickly flipped through it and let out a loud scream. “No! This Can't Be It” he yelled for the book was only a kids story book about Sammy the Skunk. When the Librarian heard him scream she came running to see what was the matter. When she saw the mess of books on the floor, she let out a scream, marched Harold to the door and literally threw him out warning him to never come back.
As he stood in front of the library trying to figure out what to do next it started to rain and before he knew it, Harold was drenched. Slowly he started walking back home and as he passed by Georgino's Hunting and Fishing Store he got an idea, and headed for the front door.
What do you know? What do you not know? Where do you go when you do not know something but want to know something? It used to be that if you wanted to learn something, you went looking for a book and like Harold you would have headed to a library. Now days, you need not go farther than the computer in your house and the internet.
In the days of Hilkiah the High Priest people had no internet, they had no books, but they did have scrolls. One particular scroll contained information that all the people should have known, but no-one knew for it had been tossed aside and forgotten. Here's the story from the TLB
One day Hilkiah the High Priest went to Shaphan the secretary and exclaimed, "I have discovered a scroll in the Temple, with God's laws written on it!" He gave the scroll to Shaphan to read. When Shaphan reported to the king about the progress of the repairs at the Temple, he also mentioned the scroll found by Hilkiah. Then Shaphan read it to the king. When the king heard what was written in it, he tore his clothes in terror. He commanded Hilkiah the priest, and Shaphan, and Asaiah, the king's assistant, and Ahikam (Shaphan's son), and Achbor (Michaiah's son) to ask the Lord, "What shall we do? For we have not been following the instructions of this book: you must be very angry with us, for neither we nor our ancestors have followed your commands." So Hilkiah the priest, and Ahikam, and Achbor, and Shaphan, and Asaiah went to the Mishneh section of Jerusalem to find Huldah the prophetess. (She was the wife of Shallum--son of Tikvah, son of Harhas--who was in charge of the palace tailor shop.) She gave them this message from the Lord God of Israel: "Tell the man who sent you to me that I am going to destroy this city and its people, just as I stated in that book you read. For the people of Judah have thrown me aside and have worshipped other gods and have made me very angry; and my anger can't be stopped. But because you were sorry and concerned and humbled yourself before the Lord when you read the book and its warnings that this land would be cursed and become desolate, and because you have torn your clothing and wept before me in contrition, I will listen to your plea. The death of this nation will not occur until after you die--you will not see the evil that I will bring upon this place." So they took the message to the king.
2 Kings 22:8-20 (TLB)
In the book of Isaiah chapter 34, Isaiah was writing to the nations of the earth and in verse 16 he says Seek and read from the book of the LORD: Not one of these shall be missing; none shall be without her mate. For the mouth of the LORD has commanded, and his Spirit has gathered them. (ESV)
How many of us follow and seek out God's word and read it? Study it? These people did.
- Nehemiah 8:8 They read from the book, from the law of God, translating to give the sense so that they understood the reading. (NAS)
- Ezra 7:10 For Ezra had set his heart to study the law of the LORD and to practice it, and to teach His statutes and ordinances in Israel. (NAS)
- Acts 17:11Now the Bereans were of more noble character than the Thessalonians, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true. (NIV)
God's word, our Bible, is an amazing book full of information for us tor read and study so that we might know or as Romans 15:4 puts it - For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope. (NAS)
One of my favorite Psalms says How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, Nor stand in the path of sinners, Nor sit in the seat of scoffers! But his delight is in the law of the LORD, And in His law he meditates day and night. Psalm 1:1-2 (NAS)
Here's Something To Ponder
- Do you take time to read and study the Bible?
- Is your Bible treated as the scroll in Hilkiah's day