Joel, chapters 1-3

“Also, what do you have against me, […]
Are you repaying me for something?
If you are repaying me,
I will swiftly, speedily bring your repayment on your heads.”
~Joel 3:4

It would be a mistake to try to judge God by our own imperfect standards when he is the ultimate judge of what is and is not righteous. (Is. 55:9)
Even when we do not understand why God lets us tolerate a painful situation, the wise course is to demonstrate patience and faith that God still does care for us and will eventually make all right. (1 Pet. 5:7; Rev. 21:5)
It would be shortsighted of us to draw away from God to follow a selfish course of sin, perhaps without ever repenting and eventually incurring his wrath.
On the other hand, if we remember he is not responsible for our suffering, we can rely on his strength to help us endure. (Job 34:10; Ps. 55:22)

Daniel, chapters 1-3

“At that time Daniel discreetly and cautiously spoke to Arioch the chief of the king’s bodyguard, who had gone out to kill the wise men of Babylon.”
~Daniel 2:14

Daniel and his Jewish companions had been brought from Jerusalem to Babylon to be trained in the knowledge of the Chaldeans and used in the king’s service. (Da. 1:3-7)
Babylonian culture being very superstitious, the king asked his circle of conjurers to explain to him the meaning of a dream he had without telling any of them what the dream itself was. (Da. 2:1-3)
Because this was impossible for them, the king ordered the death of all the “wise men,” including that of Daniel and his friends, who until then, ignored what was going on.
Daniel used discretion and caution when requesting information from the guard who had been sent to kill them.
Daniel set a good example of why God’s people should show respect toward government officials even when we are being treated unjustly. (1 Pe. 2:23)
As a result, Daniel was given Jehovah’s blessing and everyone’s life was spared. (Da. 2:47-49)

Jeremiah, chapters 22-24

“The windstorm of Jehovah will burst out in fury;
Like a whirling tempest it will whirl down on the head of the wicked.”

~Jeremiah 23:19

In the prophet’s day, the kings and elders were corrupting justice for selfish gain. (Jer. 22:13; 23:1,2,10,11)
We should not let ourselves be consumed by wrathful anger when injustice seems to prevail, because God promises to ultimately bring the wicked to justice.
When God’s justice strikes down, it can be compared to a hurricane.
Can anyone stand in God’s way?
But there is calm in the eye of a hurricane.
If we learn to stand in ‘God’s inner circle’ by repenting and paying attention to his Word, we will be safe and at peace when that day comes. (Jer. 23:5,22)

2 Samuel, chapters 9-12

Uriah replied to David: “The Ark and Israel and Judah are dwelling in temporary shelters, and my lord Joab and the servants of my lord are camping in the open field. So should I go into my own house to eat and drink and lie down with my wife? As surely as you live and are alive, I will not do this thing!”

~2 Samuel 11:11

Uriah was a Hittite, a descendant of Canaan (2 Sam. 23:39).

Canaanites were the pagan inhabitants of the Promised Land that the Israelites were supposed to have exterminated (De. 20:16-18).

Still, Uriah’s house was close to King David’s (2 Sam. 11:2,3).

He was classified as a “mighty warrior,” (1 Chron. 11:26,41).

These facts, along with his conduct, indicate that he was also a Proselyte- a pagan converted to true worship.

The most outstanding thing we know of him is the zeal he had for fulfilling God’s law.

He went into war with the rest of his army, minus their commander-in-chief, King David.

Where was their leader?

Sleeping with Uriah’s wife (2 Sam. 11:4).

(I am leaving out a few details because the story is widely known.)

When Uriah’s wife became pregnant with David’s child, King David asked Uriah to come back home with the intention of making it appear as if the child were his (2 Sam. 11:5-10).

Uriah respected God’s law and considered his war mission to be holy.

To sleep with his wife while the rest of his army was in battle was unthinkable.

Furthermore, that would have prevented him from immediately joining them, because having a semen emission under God’s law made him “unclean,” (De. 23:9-11).

King David’s plan failed, and he sentenced Uriah to be killed in battle, sending the letter by Uriah’s own hand (2 Sam. 11:12-15).

Uriah had such a level of zeal for God’s law that it cost him his life, but the important thing is that he died faithful (2 Sam. 11:24).

David did not have to die for his own sin, but his son died as a consequence of it, and David did not know another day’s peace for the rest of his life (2 Sam. 12:9-14).

Uriah’s story leaves us with a thirst for justice that is not fully quenched and it helps us see that in this world, sometimes it does not matter how good or innocent we are, we are still subject to injustices.

There may at times be brothers in the congregation in important roles with many privileges who step all over one of the sheep they are supposed to care for (Acts 20:29).

The important thing for us sheep is to not judge or leave the congregation, but to continue serving God faithfully and leave justice in his hands (Rom. 12:19).