Focus Verse: But you must return to your God; maintain love and justice, and wait for your God always. (6)
God’s constant call to wayward sons and daughters is ‘return to Me.’ And He desires for us to return to Him for all time, not temporarily. He desires for us to maintain love, maintain justice and wait on Him always.
Focus Verse: “I will deliver this people from the power of the grave; I will redeem them from death. Where, O death, are your plagues? Where, O grave, is your destruction? (14)
With the death and resurrection of Jesus, God did deliver His people from the power of the grave. He redeemed them and us from death once and for all. Paul later proclaimed a similar statement in 1 Corinthians 15:55, “Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting?”
Focus Verse: Return, Israel, to the Lord your God. Your sins have been your downfall! (1)
Sin led to the downfall of Israel. Sin will lead to our downfall too. It always does. But no sin is so destructive and no fall so great that God cannot lift us up and help us rise again. As in chapter 12 of this book, God calls all disobedient and wayward children to return to Him – their Creator. He will forgive all our sins. He will receive us graciously. He will heal our waywardness. He will love us freely. He will turn His anger away from us. At our repentance, He will give blessing.
Focus Verse: The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. The grace of our Lord Jesus be with you. (20)
In this world we will have trouble. Christ Himself told us so. Our chief troublemaker is Satan who is constantly seeking to kill, steal and destroy. He is particularly seeking to destroy the lives of those who follow Jesus the Christ. However, we will not always have to fight against Satan. Paul reminds us that God will soon crush him under our feet.