- Ballynahinch Congregational
'Seek ye out the book of the Lord and read' (Isaiah 34 v 16)
This was an instruction given when there was great turmoil among the nations at that time ‘for the indignation of the Lord is upon all nations‘ (Isaiah 34 v 2). No doubt people were troubled and did not know what to do or where to turn to. Currently the nations of the world face what has been called ‘the invisible enemy‘ (the Coronavirus). What are we to do? We salute the NHS Health Workers and Care Home workers for their bravery and dedication - continue to pray for them. But once again we must look beyond them and though this instruction was given nearly 3000 years ago – yet it is relevant in the situation we find ourselves in today: ‘seek ye out the book of the Lord and read‘.
Our nation was once a Bible loving nation, indeed there were those who laid down their lives in order that we could have free access to a Bible in our own language. No doubt many of you have observed the Orange Banner – with the words 'The secret of England’s greatness’ and then a painting of the Bible being presented to a foreign dignitary. Sadly, that cannot be said of our nation today, widespread ignorance of the Bible exists – it is noticeable how many basic Bible questions are answered incorrectly in popular quiz programmes. We are a greatly impoverished nation because of our Biblical ignorance, so can I implore you to ‘seek out the book of the Lord and read'. You will be richly rewarded and particularly in this time of crisis for our world, you will find great help and encouragement as you read the book of the Lord ‘for whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of Scriptures might have hope‘ (Romans 15 v 4). You will discover that the Bible unerringly points us to the Lord Jesus, who alone can give a certain and enduring hope and who promises to all who will trust Him: ‘My peace I give unto you not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled neither let it be afraid‘ (John 14 v 27).