A Clay Jar

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Understanding the Times

1 Chronicles 12:32

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As we come to the close of 2020, you may feel like this has been one of the most troubling years in your memory. COVID-19 has dramatically impacted the way we live and carry out our day-to-day activities. Hundreds of thousands have died, just in the United States, with the number of diagnosed infections at 75 million worldwide. And, if possible, the economic impact of combating this disease has been even worse. The U.S. has seen its most divisive election cycle yet. There has been rioting and anarchy in the streets. And the fires on the west coast have been devastating. It’s tempting to open up Revelation from the Bible and proclaim that the end times are upon us.

from Issachar, men who understood the times and knew what Israel should do—200 chiefs, with all their relatives under their command;

1 Chronicles 12:32

And I think that is why this passage hits home as we prepare for 2021. This verse is a part of the listing of those who supported David as king of Israel rather than Saul’s son. Among them was this group from the tribe of Issachar. They are described as men who “understood the times and knew what Israel should do.” In context, this is referring to making David king over Israel. But it would seem to be a valuable attribute regardless of the times.

Understanding Our Times

As believers in the world today, how well do we understand the times we are living in? It is very easy to see the world around us from a human perspective and see the sky as falling in and then worry and fret about what tomorrow will bring.

How much better if we understand these times from God’s perspective? He is sovereign. None of this has caught him off guard. And we have the promise that whatever happens to us, he will work it out for our good (Rom. 8:28). Yes, the world is unsettled. But God is not troubled, and so neither should we be.

So, as these men of Issachar, who understood the times they lived in, and acted accordingly, I should also act as one who trusts in the sovereign Lord. Rather than living with worry and fear, live with joy and boldness, bringing light to those living in darkness. We may or may not be rapidly approaching the end. But regardless, we should live as children of God, seeking his direction for our daily lives and trusting him.

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Ed Jarrett

Just an old clay jar that God continues to see fit to use in his kingdom's work. I am retired, married with 2 children, and 4 grandchildren. I have followed Jesus for many years. And I love to share what He has given me from His word.

A Note to Readers

The views expressed here are solely mine and do not necessarily reflect those of any other person, group, or organization. While I believe they reflect the teachings of the Bible, I am a fallible human and subject to misunderstanding. Please feel free to leave any comments or questions about this post in the comments section below. I am always interested in your feedback.

6 thoughts on “Understanding the Times – 1 Chronicles 12:32”

  1. understanding the time. would is on settled.But God is not trouble and so neither should we . so as these men of issachar who understood the time they lived in , and acted accordingly we should also act as one who trust in the sovereign lord. Rather than living with worries and fear live with joy and boldness for Christ bringing lights in darkness we may or not be rapidly approaching the end time.but regardless we should live as children of God seeking his direction for our daily lives and trusting God in Jesus mighty name amen

  2. I really did enjoy the reading. God has been dealing with me about time for a few years now. It is very important to have your spiritual eyes open to be able to see into our destinies. Amen? Foresight is the order of today’s world that we live in. God wants us to have eyes to see so that we can respond appropriately to things to come.

    • Yes, it is very easy just to look at the surface of things without ever seeing what is really going on. I was walking through an airport yesterday and tried to look, not at what was on the outside of the people I saw, but as people that God loves and whom Christ died for. It does make a difference.

  3. Now more than ever we need to have the mind of Christ, showing kindness and love to those who want to receive it, and letting go of worldly desires that cause us to fight with words over that which we have no control. Now is the time to shine brightly, in this dark age that is upon us. And to remember that He Who is in us is greater than he who is in the world.


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