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Blog - The Day of Small Things

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In an age of bigness -- Big houses, Big SUVs, Big screen TVs, Big Government, Big banks too Big to fail, Big Labor, Big Pharma, Big Agriculture, and yes, even Big Religion -- the small, but important, things in life are often marginalized or even held in contempt. We live in a time and culture where the prevalent philosophy is "If it's bigger, it's got to be better". If the question penned by the prophet Zechariah, "For who hath despised the day of small things?" (Zec 4:10) were asked to the average person on the street today, the answer would likely be, "I do."

When it comes to religion, many have the idea that truth lies in numbers. How many people get a surprised look on their faces when you tell them that your church has less than twenty members, as if that is indicative of the amount of faith that dwells in it? Have they forgotten that Noah's church had only eight members? Have they forgotten that Noah, the lone "preacher of righteousness" (2Pe 2:5) in a world of wickedness, "...condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith" (Heb 11:7)? The charge of the men of his day could have likely been, "So, Noah, you think you are right and the whole world is wrong?" Noah would have been in his right to utter the words that the apostle John did over 2000 years later and tell them, "...we know that we are of God, and the whole world lieth in wickedness." (1Jo 5:19).

Have so many today forgotten that Jesus said, "Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom." (Luk 12:32)? Why is it thought a thing incredible that God's people would be a small remnant (the remainder or rest of a number of persons (or animals). Chiefly, and now only, of a small number. - OED) in the last days? Has it not been such throughout history? The prophet Elijah thought he was the last righteous man in Israel in his day (1Ki 19:10). As it turned out there were 7000 that had not bowed unto Baal (1Ki 19:18), but 7000 in a nation of millions of people is still but a small remnant. Paul quotes these verses in Romans 11 and then concludes, "Even so then at this present time also there is a remnant according to the election of grace." (Rom 11:5).

Do people not know that God is not into the size and numbers game? Men are impressed by stature, status, muscles, and money, but "...the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart." (1Sa 16:7). The LORD "...delighteth not in the strength of the horse: he taketh not pleasure in the legs of a man. 11) The LORD taketh pleasure in them that fear him, in those that hope in his mercy." (Psa 147:10-11). If we are going to glory in anything, it better not be in our wisdom, might, or riches, but rather that we understand and know the true God, for, "Thus saith the LORD, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches: 24) But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the LORD which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the LORD." (Jer 9:23-24).

God is in the business of doing a lot with a little so the glory can be all His. "But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; 28) And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are: 29) That no flesh should glory in his presence." (1Co 1:27-29).

May we be able to say with the psalmist, "I am small and despised: yet do not I forget thy precepts." (Psa 119:141). May God be able to say to us like He did to the faithful church in Philadelphia, "...for thou hast a little strength, and hast kept my word, and hast not denied my name." (Rev 3:8).

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