“There was an abundance of burnt offerings, along with the usual liquid offerings, and a great deal of fat from the main peace offerings. So the Temple of the LORD was restored to service.” 2 Chronicles 29:35
- an act of helpful activity; help; aid: to do someone a service.
- the supplying or supplier of utilities or commodities, as water, electricity, or gas, required or demanded by the public.
- to make fit for use; repair; restore to condition for service: to service an automobile.
- to supply with aid, information, or other incidental services.
Have you ever endured the breakdown of an appliance or other convenience at your home?
About one year ago, we purchased a new washing machine. Shortly after we bought it, it malfunctioned so I called the service department number. Unfortunately, the service department was going through a computer upgrade and as a new customer my information had not yet been entered into the old or the new system. I was assured it would happen the next day, and they instructed me to call back then. This same scene played out every day for 5 days. My impatience and anger grew as large as my mountain of unwashed laundry on the basement floor. My out-of-service washing machine was doing me no good.
Well, during the reign of King Ahaz, the people of Judah had an out-of-service problem too, but it wasn’t an appliance; it was much more serious than my inconvenience. They posted an out-of-service sign on the door of the Temple. It closed due to the people’s freefall into idolatry and sin.
When Hezekiah became king, he reversed this slide into sin and, as we saw on Day 2, began cleansing the temple. The temple was cleansed, the people were cleansed, and sacrifices and burnt offerings were made. Today’s verse may seem a bit odd, talking about burnt offerings, liquid offerings, and fat ( well, then again, maybe not with Thanksgiving next week!), but then the writer of this books slips in this sentence, “so the Temple of the Lord was restored to service.” Now we see that this verse is actually cause for great celebration. For years the Temple had been closed. No worship, no cleansing of sins, no restoration. But now the out-of-service sign is ripped off the door and once again mercy and forgiveness are flowing.
Pray for Service
As we’ve already talked about this week, as New Testament Christians, we are temples for the Holy Spirit. What kind of signs are we hanging on the doors of our temples? Do they say “Out of Service” or “Open for Service”? I have to ask myself, do my attitude and actions draw people to the Lord or am I driving them away? Am I only concerned with my needs, or am I setting aside time to do acts of service for others? Today I am thankful for all those who have served me in so many different ways. Let’s pray that we can offer this selfless gift to others too.
- Pray to see the needs around us. It’s all too easy to put on blinders to people’s pain, especially when we’re in a rush. Lord, give us eyes to see and ears to hear the needs around us today.
- Pray to do something. All around us are acts of service just waiting to happen. Can we each bring one to life this week?
If you’d like to explore this theme further, please see The Ministry of the Word and Table.
Please leave a comment below in the Comment section on what God teaches you today about Service.
service. Dictionary.com. Dictionary.com Unabridged. Random House, Inc. http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/service (accessed: November 20, 2014).
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