Do you ever reflect upon how good we have it? If you could pick any time in history to live – to actually live not just to visit – would it not be now? When you add up all the benefits of our age and our place in Australia it seems hard to match. Consider food availability, health services, access to education, the range of work options, quality of living and the stability and peace of our society and what more could we want? We might want cheaper housing and we might want greater equity for all but in general we have it all – a privileged life!
That level of worldly privilege pales though when you consider our spiritual privileges. As we begin eight weeks in 2 Samuel it is worth considering the spiritual privilege we have to live at this time in history. The life, death and resurrection of Jesus has fundamentally altered history forevermore. We now live in the age between Jesus’ first and second coming and this is indeed the age of greatest privilege so far.
The Apostle Paul teaches that all of the Old Testament (OT) scriptures were written for us in this age. In Romans 15:4ff Paul says that the OT scriptures were written for our instruction:
For whatever was written in the past was written for our instruction, so that we
may have hope through endurance and through the encouragement from the
In 1 Corinthians 10:6 Paul adds that the OT scriptures are an example for us:
Now these things (the examples such as the time of wandering in the desert)
became examples for us, so that we will not desire evil things as they did.
The writer of Hebrews also uses the examples of faithful OT people to encourage Christians to be faithful today.
Finally, Jesus himself says that we live in the age of fulfilment (Mark 1:15) when time is fulfilled and the kingdom of God has come near.
Whatever our earthly privileges our spiritual privileges are greater – we have in the pages of our Bibles all that we need for life in relationship with our Creator. Not only is our time special but we have the examples and instruction from the age before ours to help us live out our faith in Jesus.
The question for each of us, therefore, during our time in 2 Samuel is this: what will we do with our privilege? How will we make the most of it?
Jesus tells us to repent and believe the good news of the gospel (Mark 1:15). Paul in Romans instructs us to hold on to our hope with great endurance using the encouragement we gain from the examples in the scriptures. He also instructs us to be a united voice in Christ Jesus to others in our age (Romans 15:5).
In 1 Corinthians Paul also commands us not to become sinful idolaters and not to exchange the glory of God for the lies of this world. Lastly, in Hebrews we are told to joyfully keep our eyes on Jesus and run the race set before us until he returns (Hebrews 12:1-2).
With spiritual eyes – what privilege we have in Christ! It won’t get better than this until Jesus returns and ushers in his eternal Kingdom.
Whatever your earthly struggles and strains don’t miss our 2 Samuel series (sermons and bible studies). 2 Samuel helps us to lift our eyes to the great works God has done through all of history for us and it challenges us to respond by using our privilege in a myriad of ways for God’s glory and the growth of his Kingdom.