“And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” – Colossians 3:17 (ESV)
My friend Claire over at One Passion One Devotion has given me something to keep in mind in my Bible reading each day. “You are looking for THE ONE THING,” says Claire. “The one thing is the thing that jumps out at you. It is the thing that God is ILLUMINATING to you.” With that in mind, this is the one thing I took in from reading Acts 12 on Wednesday.
To put it mildly, King Herod was not what we’d call a nice guy. In chapter 12 of Acts alone, he puts James to death, imprisons Peter and then kills his sentries after Peter escapes from jail. What’s sad is that this is just a snapshot of his life.
At the end of chapter 12, Herod is feeling full of himself again and gives an address to the people that probably did not have a lot of humility in it. The people then chanted, “The voice of a god, and not a man !” (v.22). The Bible does not say, but you can imagine that Herod was smiling inside. He probably thought there was nothing anyone could do to him to knock him off his perch. Until…
“Immediately an angel of the Lord struck him down, because he did not give God the glory, and he was eaten by worms and breathed his last.” (v. 23)
Herod, in all his orations and actions, never gave glory to God. And finally, God had seen enough of this evil king. Herod had become an obstacle to the progress of the Gospel and he was immediately removed from the scene. This allowed Paul and Barnabas to more freely proclaim their message, which they begin to do together in chapter 13.
It’s a reminder that God’s justice is never early, it’s never late, but always and wonderfully right on time.