Hope for today: teach me

Hope

10 I have sought You with all my heart; don’t let me wander from Your commands.
11 I have treasured Your word in my heart so that I may not sin against You.
12 Lord, may You be praised; teach me Your statutes.
13 With my lips I proclaim all the judgments from Your mouth.
14 I rejoice in the way [revealed by] Your decrees as much as in all riches.
15 I will meditate on Your precepts and think about Your ways. Psalm 119:10-15

To Know Jesus as Lord and Savior

But because You said so…7

Luke 5.6

When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.” Simon answered, “Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets.” When they had done so, they caught such a large number of fish that their nets began to break. So they signaled their partners in the other boat to come and help them, and they came and filled both boats so full that they began to sink.  Luke 5:4-7

The Word speaks for itself. Peter is obedient and God pours out a blessing so big that there was not enough room to receive it.

So many fish that Peter’s net broke

So many fish that they filled his boat

So many fish that he called his partners, James & John and filled their boat also

So many fish that both boats began to sink.

Peter found out that God’s way is the only way.  If Peter had not been obedient, had he not surrendered, Peter would have missed his blessing.

Selah!

Obedience slide.001Obedience 13Obedience 12

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But because You said so…4

4 When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.” Luke 5:4

Jesus finishes His teaching and says to Peter, “put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.” Now you really have to picture Peter and Andrew here. They have fished all night long, tired, weary with nothing to show for their labor and must be disappointed for they haven’t caught a thing, not one fish.

They are cleaning, drying, and mending their nets from the soil and filthiness of the sea before going home…and Jesus shows up. You know about this, you’re at work and just finished putting everything away, and the boss comes and says before you go – “could you?”

And here comes Jesus, put yourself in Peter and Andrew’s place – before you go home, go out in the deep and put down your nets for a catch.

 The last thing we want when we are exhausted after a long day’s work, much less night’s work, is someone telling us anything more than see you tomorrow, much less how to do our jobs. And get this – Jesus, this carpenter, tells these career fishermen just the opposite of how they know to do it. Jesus says deep water, it should be shallow and besides that, it’s day. Everyone knows the best fishing takes place at night.

 Now – Peter isn’t talking to the boss man, his best friend, his spouse – he’s talking to THE Man, this is Jesus, the Omniscient  One5. I Am – the First and the Last, The Beginning and the End, The Creator. He created the fish, knows everything about fish, how many there are, where they are, what size they are. There is nothing he doesn’t know!

He knows all there is to know about everything, the all of life is in Him – He is Jehovah God! “For in him all things were created; things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities;all things have been created through him and for him (Colossians 1:16).”

The lesson for me is the fact that this is equally true when the Lord is speaking to me as it was when He was speaking to Peter and Andrew. 🙂 We will see Peter and Andrew’s response on tomorrow but the greater question is what will be mine …and yours?

Blessings today!

Wisdom Wednesday

Delight - 1

Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.” Psalm 37:4

Blessings today! It’s Wisdom Wednesday. On yesterday, the Lord spoke to us about delighting in Him. Today some additional Scriptures on delighting. May we all be blessed as we eat from His Word. Please leave a comment if so inspired by the Lord.Delight - 4Delight - 6Delight - 7Delight - 9Delight - 10Delight - 11Delight - 12Delight - 13Delight - 14Delight - 15Delight - 16Road into the sunset.

Delight - 2

Zeph 3.17

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But because You said so…1

Luke 5.1-11

Blessings today! All praise the Holy and Righteous God who is Great and greatly to be praised! Today, we begin looking at Luke 5:1-11, seeking the Lord’s face, asking Him to open His words to our heart and our hearts to His Word. “Show me Your ways, oh Lord, teach me Your paths, Guide me in your truth and teach me, for You are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long (Psalm 25:4-5).” In Jesus Name, Amen!

Today, we read the Word of God, and then we will take little bites and chew day by day!
Blessings to you for including BHM in your day and taking this journey with me.

Luke 5:1-11

One day as Jesus was standing by the Lake of Gennesaret, the people were crowding around him and listening to the word of God. He saw at the water’s edge two boats, left there by the fishermen, who were washing their nets. He got into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, and asked him to put out a little from shore. Then he sat down and taught the people from the boat.

When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.”

Simon answered, “Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets.”

When they had done so, they caught such a large number of fish that their nets began to break. So they signaled their partners in the other boat to come and help them, and they came and filled both boats so full that they began to sink.

When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at Jesus’ knees and said, “Go away from me, Lord; I am a sinful man!” For he and all his companions were astonished at the catch of fish they had taken, 10 and so were James and John, the sons of Zebedee, Simon’s partners.

Then Jesus said to Simon, “Don’t be afraid; from now on you will fish for people.” 11 So they pulled their boats up on shore, left everything and followed him.

Psalm 25.4-5

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Two robbers…

Two thieves with Jesus

Therefore I will give Him a portion among the great,
    and He will divide the spoils with the strong,
because He poured out His life unto death,
    and was numbered with the transgressors.
For He bore the sin of many,
    and made intercession for the transgressors. Isaiah 53:12

Yesterday’s post was entitled, “The thief on a cross…”  but we know that it was not one thief but two – There they crucified Him, and with Him two others—one on each side and Jesus in the middle (John 19:18).”

We also know that both men were guilty of transgressing the Roman government for  Isaiah 53:12 (above) declares that Jesus was numbered with the transgressors. This is truth because it is a statement from God. These men transgressed the law.

We also know that the guilt of the transgressors was completely opposite, so unlike, Jesus for He never transgressed anyone, the law, or God. In fact, He is God. God on a cross. He is absolutely Holy, Righteous, Pure, Perfect, Sinless. This Great and Awesome God so desired to identify with man that He has come to rescue him and He willingly bears the shame of hanging among the transgressors.

Both men were robbers and both joined the others in heaping insults on Jesus. One would think that they would so concerned about their own condition that they would not be caught up in the crucifixion of Jesus. Perhaps they thought they would gain some type favor with the Romans by taking part. We don’t know.

We are not told the specific nature of the crimes these men committed but it must have been far greater than petty since they are hanging on a cross.

38 Then two robbers were crucified with Him, one on the right and another on the left. 39 And those who passed by blasphemed Him, wagging their heads 40 and saying, “You who destroy the temple and build it in three days, save Yourself! If You are the Son of God, come down from the cross.” 41 Likewise the chief priests also, mocking with the scribes and elders, said, 42 “He saved others; Himself He cannot save. If He is the King of Israel, let Him now come down from the cross, and we will believe Him. 43 He trusted in God; let Him deliver Him now if He will have Him; for He said, ‘I am the Son of God.’” 44 Even the robbers who were crucified with Him reviled Him with the same thing. Matthew 27

So here we are at the take-away again. The moment of the so what…what do I take from this portion of the story that will grow my relationship with this same Jesus who was willing to bear shame to identify with me and my condition as He gave His life for me? Selah!

It would be easy to quickly say that I am no thief, never stole anything from anyone. I cannot relate. But there is a need to move from the obvious to ask a more meaningful question, have I ever robbed God or am I robbing Him even now? I believe this to be an important question for all mankind is at the Cross of Calvary.

The easy one is from Malachi 3:8, “Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed me. But ye say, Wherein have we robbed thee? In tithes and offerings.” But there are other ways of robbing God so let’s begin a list below:

  • Worship and devotion – so many ‘g’od’s today.  The Lord desires that we have no other “g”ods…that would be no one or nothing loved, treasured or valued greater than we do Him. Surely the cross tells that He deserves our love, worship and devotion, that there can be no other ‘g’od, no competition. Jesus and Jesus alone, not Jesus plus anybody or anything. Am I robbing God? Exodus 20:3, Matthew 22:37-38, Romans 1:25
  • Love – Is it possible to not love the One who first loved us and proved it at the Cross giving us redemption and forgiveness? Does my life demonstrate my love…with all my heart, all my soul, all my mind and all my strength? Am I robbing God? 1 John 4:19, Luke 10:27, John 14:15, 1 John 5:3
  • Fellowship, communion, pray – we are a busy, busy society with time for everyone and everything but God. He created us for Himself and yet in our busyness is it possible that we do not have time to spend with Him in fellowship, communion, prayer…to behold His beauty, to hear His voice, to know His touch? Am I robbing God? Luke 10:39-42; Psalm 27:4, 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
  • Praise – The LORD is Creator, Redeemer, I AM, Sovereign, the Giver of Salvation. We live, move, and have our being in Him. He is worthy of all praise, honor, and glory…we know this. Is it possible that we sometimes we manage to praise ourselves, our children, pocketbooks, intellect, possessions and connections more than Him. Am I robbing God? Exodus 3:14, Isaiah 45:5-6, Hebrews 1:3, 2 Peter 1:3
  • Service – Our God has given us so many gifts, talents, and skills. We use them in our daily lives but am I being careful to use them for the cause of Christ and the building of His Kingdom? Jesus said “to whom much is given, much is required.” Am I robbing God? Luke 12:48, Matthew 25:14-30, Ephesians 4:11, Romans 12:6-8
  • Time – Am I giving my Savior more than the quick prayer in the car on the way to work? Am I taking time to encourage and serve others? Do I have quiet time with Him each day? Am I robbing God? Mark 6:30-32, Ephesians 5:15-17, Colossians 4:5
  • Obedience – My love should be for God should be proven in obedience, demonstration of faith and trust…am I robbing God? Mark 12:30, Psalm 18:30, 1 Samuel 15:22
  • Growth – Am I coming to the feet of Jesus that I would grow in His grace and Word so I could know Him in greater ways and He could use me in greater things in His Kingdom?  Am I robbing God? John 17:3, Peter 2:2, Hebrews 5:12, 2 Peter 3:18
  • Glory – Am I robbing God of His glory and trying to establish my own? Isaiah 42:8, Ephesians 6:11-14

Certainly there are more ways to rob God than listed above and the Scripture listing could go on and on…but I believe the Lord would have so love Him and so express our gratitude by not robbing Him of the what He endured shame, brutality, shedding of blood and life to give Him. May He strengthen us by His Spirit and Word that we would be found faithful.

We will continue with the robbers on tomorrow. Bless you today!

John 4.23-24

To Know Jesus as Lord and Savior

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Speak truth

exodus-20-16

“Do not give false testimony against your neighbor.” Exodus 20:16

We understand this command to be given in the Old Testament and in regards to untruthful testimony in the court. Even as I type this, I smile at the thought of the many who place their hands on a Bible that they do not believe in and swear to tell the truth.

I was getting side tracked. 🙂 The point is that this command has application for today. “Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have put off the old self with its practices 10 and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator (Colossians 3:9-10).” Yes, it would include court testimony but also slander, gossip, idle talk, false accusations, deliberate exaggerations, etc.

These are interesting times in which we live. A time when people are making a turn from God’s moral laws to laws created by self and endorsed by others (as long as they do not effect me). Truth is relative to people and circumstances. It certainly helps me to understand why the all-wise God knew that we need moral laws.

My, my, my…we live in a time when lies, deceit, excuses, and the new one – alternative facts abound! Please don’t misunderstand, this is not a political comment, although it is very much true in today’s political arena. As I meditated on it, in many cases, the reason or purpose of the lie, deceit, excuse, alternative fact usually routes back to self. This helps us to understand that lies and deceit can be harmful to not only ourselves but our family, neighbors, community, churches and the world. Jesus told us in Matthew 5, “But let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ ‘No.’ For whatever is more than these is from the evil one.

We will do well to embrace this command, let’s remember that the Lord has told us that He delights in truth in the inward being (Psalm 51:6).” When the inward being is one of truth, the outward will be as well. Perhaps this says to us that if any part of us is a habitual, practiced false testimony, lie, deceit- we need to spend more time in the Word and prayer to seek a deeper, more personal and intimate relationship with the Lord that bears the fruit of righteousness, both in position (the cross) and practice (how we live these new lives Jesus died to give us to His glory). 

“You must not pass along false rumors. You must not cooperate with evil people by lying on the witness stand. Exodus 23:1

Hiding hatred makes you a liar; slandering others makes you a fool. Proverbs 10:18

An honest witness tells the truth; a false witness tells lies. Proverbs 12:17

 A false witness will not go unpunished, and a liar will be destroyed. Proverbs 19:9

Don’t testify against your neighbors without cause; don’t lie about them. Proverbs 2:28

They must not slander anyone and must avoid quarreling. Instead, they should be gentle and show true humility to everyone. Titus 3:2

Don’t speak evil against each other, dear brothers and sisters. If you criticize and judge each other, then you are criticizing and judging God’s law. But your job is to obey the law, not to judge whether it applies to you. James 4:11

So get rid of all evil behavior. Be done with all deceit, hypocrisy, jealousy, and all unkind speech. 1 Peter 2:1

16 There are six things the Lord hates—
    no, seven things he detests:
17 haughty eyes,
    a lying tongue,
    hands that kill the innocent,
18 a heart that plots evil,
    feet that race to do wrong,
19 a false witness who pours out lies,
    a person who sows discord in a family. Proverbs 6:16-19

 Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another. Ephesians 4:25

ephesians-4-25

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We are not to steal

exodus-20-15

“You shall not steal.” Exodus 20:15

It would be so easy to skip over this one and declare that I have never stole anything from anyone. Just thought I would list a couple of things to help us understand that to correctly examine ourselves, we would did the Holy Spirit’s help in thinking deeper than breaking into someone’s home. May we be mindful that Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change (James 1:17). God says stealing is wrong and that we believe God got it wrong when He did not give what we steal to us.

May God help us to guard our obedience and devotion to Him in regards to stealing in the following areas:

  • Taxes
  • Unpaid debts/loans
  • Tithes
  • Work time
  • Relational fellowship for gadgets
  • Incorrect change, not returned
  • Business deals
  • Business overcharging
  • Office supplies
  • Reputations
  • Time with God for selfish pleasure
  • Blessings that should be passed to help others but kept for ourselves
  • Etc.

The Word of God:

Let the thief no longer steal, but rather let him labor, doing honest work with his own hands, so that he may have something to share with anyone in need. Ephesians 4:28

 For even when we were with you, we gave you this rule: “The one who is unwilling to work shall not eat.”  We hear that some among you are idle and disruptive. They are not busy; they are busybodies. 2 Thessalonians 3:10-11

 Anyone who does not provide for their relatives, and especially for their own household, has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever. 1 Timothy 5:8

Will man rob God? Yet you are robbing me. But you say, ‘How have we robbed you?’ In your tithes and contributions. Malachi 3:8

So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets. Matthew 7:12

The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly. John 10:10

So when we do not honor what belongs to others, we are more like our enemy than our God. May God help us to see all things through His eyes and Word.

ephesians-4-28

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Honor human life

 

exodus-20-13“You shall not murder.
Exodus 20:13 NIV

In this command, God speaks to the sacredness of life and our responsibility to be mindful that every man is an image bearer of God. 

“Whoever sheds the blood of man,
    by man shall his blood be shed,
for God made man in His own image.” Genesis 9:6

In early years, this text was translated to say “Thy shall not kill.” Most modern translators agree that the correct translation is murder. It is important because The Jews were allowed to defend themselves (Exodus 22:2) and accidental death was addressed separately as well (Exodus 21:12-14).

The Word of God:

 “You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not murder; and whoever murders will be liable to judgment.’ 22 But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ will be liable to the hell of fire. 

Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him. 1 John 3:15

You are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies. John 8:44

Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for whoever loves others has fulfilled the law. The commandments, “You shall not commit adultery,” “You shall not murder,” “You shall not steal,” “You shall not covet,” and whatever other command there may be, are summed up in this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” 10 Love does no harm to a neighbor. Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law. Romans 13:8-10

So I expect that some are you are expecting a great discourse on abortion or the senseless violence that we see in our nation every day…and rightfully so, BUT if you are expecting this, you already know truth. Sssooo…let me ask another question. Have you ever murdered someone with your mouth (gossip)? Or in your heart (anger, hate, jealousy)? 

“After I strayed, I repented; after I came to understand, I beat my breast. I was ashamed and humiliated because I bore the disgrace of my youth.” Jeremiah 31:19

“Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Grieve, mourn and wail. Change your laughter to mourning and your joy to gloom. 10 Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.” James 4:7-10

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Honor your dad and mom

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Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. “Honor your father and mother”—which is the first commandment with a promise— “so that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.” Exodus 20:12

Remember, one of the Pharisee tested Jesus by asking:

36 “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” 37 And He said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. 38 This is the great and first commandment.”
We have looked discussed the first and greatest command. Today, we begin to look at the second greatest command. 39 And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.
40 On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.” Matthew 22:36-40

The Lord begins with the foundation of loving our parents and authority. God expects His children to love others and that it be proven out in how we respect and treat one another. My, my, my…as God has granted knowledge and the life expectancy to extend, it seems that as a society as we have become so self-centered and focused that for some this commandment has been put to the side.

Isn’t it something how we know the application of this verse so well when we are the parents and we relate it to our children…”children are to honor their parents.” But as our parents age and have greater needs, for some, it slips by us that God has commanded that children are to honor and respect our parents.

My granddad use to say as he aged – “once a man, twice a child.” He was speaking of his own recognition that he was aging and his need for help. My aunt loved, honored, and respected him so much that she brought him into her home and cared for him until the age of 96. She was able to do this in his old age because she loved, honored, and respected him in the early years and all the years between. We can’t all bring our parents home but we can all love, honor, respect and watch over their care and spend time in fellowship with them no matter where they reside.  It should be a lifetime of love, honor, and respect demonstrated with action.

It is one of those times that we will let the Scriptures speak to show us how seriously God took this command in the Old Testament:

Exodus 21:15, 17, “Anyone who attacks their father or mother is to be put to death. “Anyone who curses their father or mother is to be put to death.”

Leviticus 19:3, 32, “‘Each of you must respect your mother and father, and you must observe my Sabbaths. I am the Lord your God….“‘Stand up in the presence of the aged, show respect for the elderly and revere your God. I am the Lord.

Deuterontomy 27:16, “Cursed is anyone who dishonors their father or mother.” Then all the people shall say, “Amen!”

Proverbs 1:8, “Listen, my son, to your father’s instruction and do not forsake your mother’s teaching.”

Proverbs 16:31, “Gray hair is a crown of splendor; it is attained in the way of righteousness.

Proverbs 20:20, “If someone curses their father or mother, their lamp will be snuffed out in pitch darkness.”

Proverbs 23:22, “Listen to your father, who gave you life, and do not despise your mother when she is old.”

Proverbs 30:17, “The eye that mocks a father and despises a mother’s instructions
will be plucked out by ravens of the valley and eaten by vultures.”

From the lips of Jesus:

For God said, ‘Honor your father and mother’ and ‘Anyone who curses their father or mother is to be put to death.’ But you say that if anyone declares that what might have been used to help their father or mother is ‘devoted to God,’ they are not to ‘honor their father or mother’ with it. Thus you nullify the word of God for the sake of your tradition. You hypocrites! Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you:

“‘These people honor me with their lips,
    but their hearts are far from me.
They worship me in vain;
    their teachings are merely human rules.’” Matthew 15:4-9

“You have a fine way of setting aside the commands of God in order to observe your own traditions! 10 For Moses said, ‘Honor your father and mother,’ and, ‘Anyone who curses their father or mother is to be put to death.’ 11 But you say that if anyone declares that what might have been used to help their father or mother is Corban (that is, devoted to God)— 12 then you no longer let them do anything for their father or mother. 13 Thus you nullify the word of God by your tradition that you have handed down. And you do many things like that.” Mark 7:9-12

And Paul:

“Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. “Honor your father and mother”—which is the first commandment with a promise— “so that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.”  Ephesians 6:1-3

“Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. Whatever a man sows, he will reap in return.”
Galatians 6:7

ephesians-6-20

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