[forthright] Verse of the Day

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From: "Forthright Magazine" <forthrightmag@...>
Date: Thu, 12 Jul 2007 16:42:33 -0300
Forthright Magazine
Straight to the Cross

Join us in the prayer, "For Summer Safety."


Verse of the Day
by A.A. Neale

Some Internet services provide by email or online 
a Verse of the Day or Daily Verse or whatever they 
style it. I confess to both liking and despising 
them, simultaneously. 

These little snippets of verse appear all too like 
the scripture boxes the Pharisees wore on the 
foreheads, but apparently never read, by virtue of 
being close to the eyes but out of range of 

Good luck charms they were, blessings in a box 
guaranteed by a literal -- and altogether easier 
-- obedience than by installing that same passage 
of Bible in the heart and living it out daily. 

Worse, the clips of Bible verses show us the 
quick-fix society we are. Gobble down the morning 
caffeine and a breakfast bar while you drive to 
work. Zip through an email with a gaggle of words 
torn from a context or read them on an RSS reader 
or off a webpage. Check off Bible reading for the 
day. Easy, wasn't it? 

We're certainly not ready for Nehemiah's plan, 
put into action through hair-pulling and nighttime 

"Now on the twenty-fourth day of this month the 
children of Israel were assembled with fasting, in 
sackcloth, and with dust on their heads. Then 
those of Israelite lineage separated themselves 
from all foreigners; and they stood and confessed 
their sins and the iniquities of their fathers. 
And they stood up in their place and read from the 
Book of the Law of the LORD their God for 
one-fourth of the day; and for another fourth they 
confessed and worshiped the LORD their God" 
(Nehemiah 9:1-3 NKJV). 

A fourth of a day is three hours. Add to that 
another fourth of a day, and you have a six-hour 
church service. A three-hour Bible reading. 
Standing up. The other three hours was spent 
confessing sin, and I doubt we today know enough 
about sin to fill up a five-minute Starbucks 

We won't even mention the fasting, sackcloth, 
head-dusting, and foreigner-separating that went 
on BEFORE the Bible reading. 

No, we're doing 10-second whiz-bang Bible 
readings on the Verse of the Day. We can imagine 
the impact they're making. 

But they are nifty, aren't they?

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