Do you remember the School House Rocks videos? Fun and yet so educational! One of my favorite ones is called “Conjunction Junction.”
Conjunctions are very powerful connectors. Especially when I’m reading the Bible I slow down when I see and, or, or but. These conjunctions can open up a wealth of Scriptural knowledge.
Another thing that stands out to me when I’m reading God’s Word is the (parentheses). Little sidebars that can add so much richness. Today I saw a parenthetical comment followed by one of these powerful conjunctions.
Here’s the parenthetical comment: (There was never a man like Ahab, who sold himself to do evil in the eyes of the LORD, urged on by Jezebel his wife. He behaved in the vilest manner by going after idols, like the Amorites the LORD drove out before Israel) (1 Kings 21:25-26).
Ahab is not just evil—he’s not just bad—he’s the evilest, worst king… ever!
BUT = not one thing, but an entirely different thing.
But Ahab—the evilest king ever—humbled himself before God: “Have you noticed how Ahab has humbled himself before Me? Because he has humbled himself, I will not bring this disaster in his day, BUT I will bring it on his house in the days of his son” (v. 29).
I’m so glad God recognizes our humility and then extends His mercy. BUT is a great conjunction! Check out these passages with BUT—
Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And that is what some of you were. BUT you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God. (1 Corinthians 6:9-11)
Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the worst. BUT for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display His unlimited patience as an example for those who would believe on Him and receive eternal life. (1 Timothy 1:15-16)
It doesn’t matter if you were the vilest, meanest, worst-person-ever, when you humble yourself to ask for God’s forgiveness, He pronounces that great conjunction—BUT—that completely cancels your past!!
Wow! What a merciful, loving God! And what a great conjunction He inserts in our lives—BUT!
I’m happy today that I’ve been to God’s Conjunction Junction and He’s hooked a BUT between my former life and my present life. How about you?