I Timothy 3:16

Beyond all question, the mystery of godliness is great: He appeared in a body, was vindicated by the Spirit, was seen by angels, was preached among the nations was believed on in the world, was taken up in glory.

Interesting…the mystery, the not-quite-graspable truth, is all about Christ – God in the flesh. In this Christ is the key to true godliness. Learning of Him through he Word of God, being taught by His Spirit, we mature in true godliness. Do we always do, or say, the right things? No, but as we live and respond to the truth we know in Christ Jesus, He fine tunes us for His purposes as His ambassadors in this world.

I Timothy 2:9 and 10

...also want women to dress modestly, with decency and propriety, not with braided hair or gold or pearls or expensive clothes, but with good deeds, appropriate for women who profess to worship God.

Paul wants women to dress in clothing of “good deeds”. I am known for my love of rhinestones and all things that sparkle, the more the merrier. “Good deeds” clothing, though, strikes me as a much better choice. How amazing would it be if people recognized us by this kind of clothing. “Look, here comes Jane, down the street. You can tell it is her because she is dressed in the good deeds of a woman whose heart is set to worship God.” Rhinestones pale in comparison.

I Timothy 1:19

holding on to faith and a good conscience. Some have rejected these and so have shipwrecked their faith.

This is such a visual picture: shipwrecked faith. How does it happen? 2 things have been rejected: holding onto your faith, and holding on to a good conscience. Satan makes rocky and dangerous shores appear safe, and when a person is lured away from a pure heart, and a good conscience, his faith is shipwrecked. Sometimes, the only way to hold on to your faith is to fall at the feet of God and plead with Him to keep you there. A good conscience comes from listening to the Holy Spirit and obeying Him.

Jeremiah 34:1 and 2

While Nebuchadnezzer king of Babylon and all his army and all the kingdoms and peoples in the empire he ruled were fighting against Jerusalem and all its surrounding towns, this word came to Jeremiah from the LORD: “This is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: Go to Zedekiah king of Judah and tell him, ‘this is what the LORD says: I am about to hand this city over to the king of Babylon, and he will burn it down.

This may seem like a non-encouraging verse, but think about it: the Lord knew everything that was going on, the names of those who were fighting, and the name of the towns. Think of a time when you were utterly surrounded by trials – physical, financial, emotional. These verses should remind us, we are not alone. He knows our circumstances. God is aware of our suffering. He is able to comfort us, and to give us hope, and wisdom. Once we belong to Him through the miracle of salvation, He never abandons us.

Jeremiah 33:20 and 25

If you can break my covenant with the day and my covenant with the night, so that day and night no longer come at their appointed time…

A covenant with day and night – The One Who names the stars and puts them in their places ( Psalm 147:4) , Who tells the ocean where its limits are (Job 38:4, 56), this amazing God has fixed the laws of heaven and earth, of day and night. We should have no fear. If His covenants with day and night are unbreakable, think how secure our covenant is made through the blood of His Son.

Jeremiah 3: 13-16

In their presence I gave Baruch these instructions: This is what the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel says: Take these document, both the sealed and unsealed copies of the deed of purchase, and put them in a clay jar so they will last a long time. For this is what the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel, says: Houses, fields and vineyards will again be bought in this land. After I had given the deed of purchase to Baruch son of Neriah, I prayed to the LORD.

The Lord is about to hand over this land to a foreign king. The Jews will have no right to property. They will be slaves. Yet God has Jeremiah seal the deed to this land in a clay jar so it will last a long time and He promises that fields and vineyards will be purchased again in this land. So this deed is a promise of future hope in a clay vessel. Wait a minute!! That describes us!! As Christians, we are vessels of clay with the seal of the Holy spirit, the hope of a future inheritance, and eternal life with God!

Jeremiah 31:3, 4, and 13

vs 3 and 4 The LORD appeared to us in the past, saying: “I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with loving-kindness. I will build you up again and you will be rebuilt, O Virgin Israel. Again you will take up your tambourines and go out to dance with the joyful. vs. 13 then the maidens will dance and be glad, young men and old as well. I will turn their mourning into gladness; I will give them comfort and joy instead of sorrow.

I know these verses are specifically for Israel – a hope in their time of exile, a look at a brighter future, but for the Christian this is the new life experienced after salvation. The darkness is gone, the hope renewed, the sin forever atoned. Anger, bondage to sin, and hopelessness are replaced by joy, gladness, comfort and the light of life in Christ. With this new life in Christ, we find ourselves among the joyful.