Today+1 and then… Well this morning starts early so that I can make sure I complete my reading and am prepared for the day ahead. We will say our final goodbyes as we go to the funeral. We will come together as a family and celebrate my uncles life. He will be missed.
The countdown continues…
We need to remember that what the devil plans or planned for evil, God can take and turn it around and use it for good! We each have an important role or part to play! If we don’t do our part then it will create problems. We shouldn’t compare our part to others thinking that our part isn’t as important as each part has an important part in the total.
Consider the body…
12 Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ. 13 For we were all baptized byc]”>[c] one Spirit so as to form one body—whether Jews or Gentiles, slave or free—and we were all given the one Spirit to drink. 14 Even so the body is not made up of one part but of many.
15 Now if the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body.16 And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body.17 If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? 18 But in fact God has placed the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. 19 If they were all one part, where would the body be? 20 As it is, there are many parts, but one body.
21 The eye cannot say to the hand, “I don’t need you!” And the head cannot say to the feet, “I don’t need you!” 22 On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, 23 and the parts that we think are less honorable we treat with special honor. And the parts that are unpresentable are treated with special modesty,24 while our presentable parts need no special treatment. But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it,25 so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. 26 If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it.
27 Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.28 And God has placed in the church first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, of helping, of guidance, and of different kinds of tongues. 29 Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Do all work miracles? 30 Do all have gifts of healing? Do all speak in tonguesd]”>[d]? Do all interpret? 31 Now eagerly desire the greater gifts.
–from 1 Corinthians 12
So let’s do our part! Let’s not grow weary in doing good! Let’s answer the call God has put on our lives and complete the good work He has prepared in advance for us to do!
What do you want to be remembered for? What things do you want God to take note of? How do you want to be remembered? What words would you like people to use when they describe you? Imagine a day where people get to say a word or two about you…say a eulogy or just comments as your funeral…what would you like to hear? what would you expect to hear based on what your life is today? is there anything you would like to change before that final day comes? how will you change starting today as the first day of the rest of your life?
So take a look around at this world! Do you see how estranged so many are from God? Do you see how far so many have slide away? It’s not the first time and so there is hope that maybe people will turn back to God before it is too late… So let’s take a look at today’s reading from Malachi…
Jacob Loved Adonai
1An oracle: The word of Adonai to Israel by Malachi.
2“I loved you,” says Adonai. But you say: “How have you loved us?” “Was Esau not Jacob’s brother?” —it is the declaration of Adonai— “Yet I loved Jacob
3and Esau I hated. I made his hills a wasteland and gave his inheritance to jackals of the wilderness.”
4For Edom may say, “We have been beaten down, but we will return and rebuild the ruins.” Thus Adonai-Tzva’ot says: “They may rebuild but I will tear down. They will be called a wicked territory, the people Adonai denounced forever.
5So you will see, and you will say: ‘May Adonai be magnified beyond the border of Israel!’”
6“A son honors his father, and a servant his master. So if I am Father, where is My honor? If I am Master, where is My reverence?”—says Adonai-Tzva’ot—“you, kohanim who despise My Name!” But you say, “How did we despise Your Name?”
7“By offering defiled bread on My altar.” But you say, “How did we defile You?” When you say, “The table of Adonai is despicable.”
8“When you bring a blind one as sacrifice, is it not wrong? Or when you bring a lame or sick one, is it not wrong? Offer them now to your governor! Would he be pleased with you? Or will he acknowledge you favorably?” says Adonai-Tzva’ot.
9“So now, implore God’s favor! Then, will He be gracious to us? Since this has come from your hands, will He accept any of it from you?” says Adonai-Tzva’ot.
10“If just one of you would shut the doors, and not light My altar uselessly! I have no delight in you,” says Adonai-Tzva’ot. “Nor will I accept any offering from your hand.
11“For from sunrise to its setting My Name will be great among the nations, and in every place incense will be offered to My Name with a pure grain offering, for My Name will be great among the nations,” says Adonai-Tzva’ot.
12But you are profaning it when you say, “The table of Adonai is defiled, and as for its fruit, its food—despicable!“
13You also say, “It’s so tedious!” “And you sniff at it,” says Adonai-Tzva’ot. “So you bring plunder, the lame and the sick. Then you bring them as the offering. Should I accept this from your hand?” says Adonai.
14“Moreover, cursed is a deceiver who has in his flock a male, but makes a vow and sacrifices something blemished to my Lord. For I am a great King,” says Adonai-Tzva’ot, “and My Name shall be revered among the nations.”
So we need to be spreading God’s Good News and the hope that comes from a relationship with Jesus! We need to help others to hear the Good News so that they can realize there is more to life than just going thru the motions till you die. We need to share the hope that is within us! We need to share the joy of the Lord that is our strength! We need to share our testimony of how God has saved us and transformed us! We need not only the people but the preachers and the teachers to be teaching the truth for the truth will set us free! We don’t need people who omit the truth which is the same as lies! We don’t need people who add to the truth because that is also lies! We need to have God’s Word preached so that people can hear what God has to say and come to the reality of God’s love and God’s truth!
Warning to the Kohanim and Levites
1“So now, kohanim, this commandment is for you.
2If you will not listen, and if you will not take to heart to give glory to My Name” —says Adonai-Tzva’ot— “then I will send the curse on you, and I will curse your blessings. Yes, indeed I have cursed them, because you did not take it to heart.
3Behold, I am rebuking the seed on account of you, and will spread dung on your faces —the dung of your festivals— and take you away together with it.
4Then you will know that I have sent this command to you, to be My covenant with Levi,” says Adonai-Tzva’ot.
5“My covenant was with him for life and shalom, and I gave them to him for reverence. So he revered Me, and he was awestruck by My Name.
6Instruction of truth was in his mouth. Injustice was not found on his lips. In shalom and uprightness he walked with Me, and he turned many from iniquity.
7For a kohen’s lips should guard knowledge, and instruction must be sought from his mouth. For he is a messenger of Adonai-Tzva’ot.
8But you have turned from the way. You caused many to stumble in Torah by the instruction, You corrupted the covenant of the Levites,” —says Adonai-Tzva’ot.
9“So I also have made you despised and lowly to all the people, because you are not keeping My ways but show favoritism in Torah.”
10Do we not all have one Father? Has not one God created us? Why do we deal treacherously —a man against his brother— defiling the covenant of our fathers?
11Judah has dealt treacherously, an abomination done in Israel, even in Jerusalem! For Judah has defiled Adonai’s Sanctuary, which He loves, and married the daughter of a foreign god.
12Adonai will cut off the man who does this, until he is cast from the tents of Jacob, and from offering a gift to Adonai-Tzva’ot.
Covenant With Your Wife
13Secondly, you do this: Tears cover the altar of Adonai— you are weeping and groaning because He no longer accepts the offering or receives it favorably from your hand.
14Yet you say, “Why?” Because Adonai bears witness between you and the wife of your youth, whom you have treated deceitfully. Yet she had been your companion and your wife by covenant.
15Did the One not make her with a remnant of Ruach? Then what is the One seeking? Offspring of God! So protect your spirit— do not betray the wife of your youth.
16“For I hate divorce,” —says Adonai the God of Israel— “and the one who covers his garment with injustice,” says Adonai-Tzva’ot. So protect your spirit— do not act treacherously.
17You wearied Adonai with your words. Yet you say: “How did we weary Him?” When you say: “Everyone doing evil is good in the sight of Adonai, and He delights in them.” Or, “Where is the God of justice?”
So will you align with God? Will you go it His way? Will you receive His gift of forgiveness thru His Son Jesus Christ? Will you turn back to God like the lost son to the father? If not now then when? If not you then who? Before it is too late, it’s time to turn back to God!
So consider and meditate on what is truth as we read the next part of today’s reading. Lead with love as you step up and step out to be God’s hands extended as God is Love…
Yeshua, the Ruach of Truth
1Loved ones, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see if they are from God. For many false prophets have gone out into the world.
2You know the Ruach Elohim by this—every spirit that acknowledges that Messiah Yeshua has come in human flesh is from God,
3but every spirit that does not acknowledge Yeshua is not from God. This is the spirit of the anti-messiah, which you have heard is coming and now is already in the world.
4You are from God, children, and you have overcome them, because greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world.
5They are from the world, so they speak from the world and the world listens to them.
6We are from God; whoever knows God listens to us, but whoever is not from God does not listen to us. By this we know the Spirit of truth and the spirit of error.
God’s Life-Giving Spirit of Love
7Loved ones, let us love one another, for love is from God. Everyone who loves is born of God and knows God.
8The one who does not love does not know God, for God is love.
9The love of God was revealed among us by this—that God sent His one and only Son into the world so that we might live through Him.
10This is love—not that we have loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son as an atonement for our sins.
11Loved ones, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.
12No one has ever seen God. If we love one another, God abides in us and His love is made perfect in us.
13We know that we abide in Him and He in us by this—because He has given us of His Spirit.
14We have seen and testify that the Father has sent His Son as Savior of the world.
15If anyone acknowledges that Yeshua is Ben-Elohim, God abides in him and he abides in God.
16So we have come to know and trust in the love that God has for us. God is love. Now whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.
God’s Fulfilling Love
17In this way, love is made perfect among us, so that we should have boldness on the Day of Judgment. For just as He is, so also are we in this world.
18There is no fear in love, but perfect love drives out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and the one who fears has not been made perfect in love.
19We love, because He first loved us.
Love God—Love God’s Family
20If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar. For the one who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God, whom he has not seen.
21And this commandment we have from Him: that the one who loves God should also love his brother.
–1 John 4
So let’s take hold of the truth which sets us free! Let’s take hold of the reality is isn’t Jesus+ (plus) it’s Jesus alone! We aren’t to add to the Bible and we don’t need to add anything to Jesus either! He is the way, the truth, and the life! But God’s Word doesn’t stop there God’s Word says it this way:
6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. –John 14:6
It’s not Jesus- (minus) either – it’s just Jesus!
So as we close on today’s reading let’s take hold of the truth that sets us free! Let’s take hold of the forgiveness that comes thru our faith in Jesus! And let’s live our lives in a way that will bring God all the praise, the honor, and the glory in Jesus’ name.
God’s Truth and Blessings Abide Forever
1The elder. To the chosen lady and her children, whom I love in truth—and not I alone, but also all who have come to know the truth—
2because of the truth that abides in us and will be with us forever:
3Grace, mercy, and shalom be with us, from God the Father and from Messiah Yeshua, the Father’s Son, in truth and love!
Lovingly Walk in God’s Truth
4I was overjoyed to find some of your children walking in truth, just as we received as a commandment from the Father.
5Now I ask you, dear lady, that we love one another. It is not as though I am writing you a new command, but the one we have had from the beginning.
6Now this is love: that we walk according to His commands. This is the commandment—just as you heard from the beginning—that you walk in love.
Protect Against Messianic Pretenders
7For many deceivers have gone out into the world—those who do not acknowledge Yeshua as Messiah coming in human flesh. This one is a deceiver and the anti-messiah.
8Watch yourselves, so you do not lose what we have worked for but receive a full reward.
9Anyone who goes too far and does not remain in Messiah’s teaching does not have God. Anyone who remains in this teaching has both the Father and the Son.
10If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not welcome him into your home or even give him a greeting.
11For the one greeting him shares in his evil deeds.
Brotherly Fellowship Is Joyful
12Although I have much to write to you, I don’t want to do it with paper and ink. But I hope to come to you and speak face to face, so that our joy may be full.
13The children of your chosen sister send you greetings.
–2 John 1
Today’s reading: Nehemiah 13, Malachi 1, Malachi 2, 1 John 4, 2 John 1