Category Archives: Confidence

Where do you turn in your desperation?


Are you in a tough situation? Are you in a rough situation? Are you in a troubling situation? Are you in a challenging situation? Are you in an exciting situation? Are you in a troubling situation? Are you worried? Are you getting to the end of your rope? Are you unsure what to do? Are you unsure where to turn? Are you looking for answers? Are you looking for direction? Are you looking for instruction? Are you looking for hope? Are things looking desperate? Are things looking tough? Are things looking hard? Are things looking difficult?

Where will you turn? Who will you call? Who will you cry out to? Who will you share it with? Who will you turn to? Who can you ask? Who can you trust? Who can bring hope?

Will you look at what others going thru? Will you try to help them? In your time of need will you help? In your tough time will you help? In your situation will you reach out and help someone else? Will you try to be helpful?

Or going back to the original question…

Where do you turn in your desperation?

Remember, the battle belongs to the Lord!


Today’s reading begins in 2 Kings…

Hezekiah’s Cry of Desperation

1When King Hezekiah heard it, he tore his clothes, covered himself with sackcloth, and went into the House of Adonai. 2Then he sent Eliakim, who was in charge of the palace, Shebna the scribe and the senior kohanim, covered with sackcloth, to Isaiah the prophet son of Amoz. 3Then they said to him, “Thus says Hezekiah: This day is a day of distress, rebuke and contempt. For children have come to the point of birth, and there is no strength for giving birth. 4Perhaps Adonai your God, hearing all the words of the Rab-shakeh, whom the king of Assyria his master has sent to mock the living God, will rebuke the words which Adonai your God has heard. So offer prayer for the remnant that is left.” 5When the officials of King Hezekiah came to Isaiah, 6Isaiah said to them: “Thus you will say to your master, ‘Thus says Adonai: Do not be afraid of the words you have heard, with which the boys of the king of Assyria have blasphemed Me. 7Behold, I am putting a spirit in him, and he will hear a rumor, and will return to his own country; then I will make him fall by the sword in his own land.’” 8Then the Rab-shakeh returned, and found the king of Assyria fighting against Libnah, for he had heard that he had withdrawn from Lachish. 9Now he heard a report of Tirhakah, king of Ethiopia saying, “Behold, he has come out to fight against you.” When he heard it, he sent messengers to Hezekiah saying: 10“Thus will you speak to King Hezekiah of Judah saying: ‘Do not let your God in whom you trust deceive you, saying: Jerusalem will not be given into the hand of the king of Assyria. 11Behold, you have heard what the kings of Assyria have done to all lands—utterly destroying them—so will you be delivered? 12Have the gods of the nations delivered those my fathers destroyed—Gozan, Haran, Rezeph, and the children of Eden who were in Tel Assar? 13Where is the king of Hamath, or the king of Arpad, or the king of the city of Sepharvaim, of Hena, or Ivvah?’” 14Then Hezekiah received the letter from the hand of the messengers and read it. Then Hezekiah went up to the House of Adonai and spread it before Adonai. 15Hezekiah prayed before Adonai, saying, “Adonai, God of Israel, who is enthroned upon the cheruvim. You alone are God of all the kingdoms of the earth. You made heaven and earth. 16Incline Your ear, Adonai, and hear! Open Your eyes, Adonai, and see! Listen to the words of Sennacherib that he has sent to mock the living God. 17It is true, Adonai, the kings of Assyria have devastated the nations and their lands, 18and have cast their gods into the fire—for they were not gods, but the work of human hands—wood and stone. So they have destroyed them. 19Now, Adonai our God, save us from his hand, so that all the kingdoms of the earth may know that You alone, Adonai, are God.” 20Then Isaiah son of Amoz sent word to Hezekiah saying, “Thus says Adonai, God of Israel: ‘Because you prayed to Me about King Sennacherib of Assyria, I have heard you. 21This is the word that Adonai has spoken about him: “The virgin Daughter of Zion will despise you and mock you. The Daughter of Jerusalem will shake her head at you. 22Whom did you taunt and blaspheme? Against whom did you raise your voice and haughtily lift up your eyes? Against the Holy One of Israel! 23Through your servants, you have blasphemed my Lord and said: ‘With my many chariots I have climbed to the heights of the mountains, to the remotest parts of Lebanon! I cut down its tall cedars and choice cypress trees. I have gone to its farthest lodge, its thickest forest. 24I have dug wells and drunk foreign waters, and with the soles of my feet I dried up all the streams of Egypt.’ 25Have you not heard? I did it long ago! From ancient times I planned it. Now I have brought it to pass— that you should turn fortified cities into heaps of rubble. 26Their inhabitants are weak-handed, shattered and ashamed They are like the grass of the field and green herb, like grass on roofs, scorched before it is grown up. 27But I know your sitting down, your going out, and your coming in, and your raging against Me. 28Because your raging against Me and your arrogance reached My ears, I will put My hook in your nose, and My bridle in your lips, and I will turn you back by the way you came.” 29‘“So this shall be the sign to you: This year you will eat what grows by itself, in the second year what springs from that. But in the third year, you will sow, reap, plant vineyards, and eat their fruit. 30 “‘The surviving remnant of the house of Judah will take root downward and bear fruit upward. 31For from Jerusalem a remnant will go out, and survivors from Mount Zion. The zeal of Adonai-Tzva’ot will accomplish this.’” 32Therefore thus says Adonai concerning the king of Assyria: “He will not come to this city, or shoot an arrow there, or come before it with a shield, or throw up a siege-ramp against it. 33By the way that he came, by the same he will return, and he will not come into this city” —it is a declaration of Adonai. 34“For I will defend this city to save it, for My own sake, and for My servant David’s sake.” 35Then it came about that night that the angel of Adonai went out and struck down 185,000 men in the Assyrian camp. When the men arose early in the morning, behold, they were all dead corpses. 36So King Sennacherib of Assyria withdrew, went away, and returned home, and stayed in Nineveh. 37One day, as he was worshipping in the house of his god Nisroch, his sons Adrammelech and Sarezer struck him down with the sword, and escaped to the land of Ararat. Then his son Esarhaddon became king in his place.

–2 Kings 19

God is able!

Be courageous! Do not be afraid! Do not be dismayed!

With God on our side, all things are possible! Our God who is able to exceedingly more than we could ever ask or imagine, in Him do I put my trust!

Rely on God! Put all your hope and trust in Him! Let Him be your confidence!

Assyrian’s Failed Seige of Jerusalem

1After these acts of faithfulness, Sen­na­cherib king of Assyria came and invaded Judah. He encamped against the fortified cities, intending to break into them for himself. 2When Hezekiah saw that Sennacherib had come and intended to wage war against Jerusalem, 3he consulted with his officers and warriors about blocking the waters of the springs outside the city, and they supported him. 4Many people assembled and blocked off all the springs and the raging wadi in the land saying, “Why should the kings of Assyria come and find plenty of water?” 5Then he took courage and rebuilt the entire wall that had been broken down, raised up the towers, added another outer wall, fortified the Millo in the city of David, and made plenty of weapons and shields. 6He also appointed military officers over the people and assembled them before him in the square at the city gate, and encouraged them saying, 7“Chazak! Be courageous! Do not be afraid or dismayed by the king of Assyria and the whole horde that is with him—for we have more with us than he has with him! 8With him is an arm of flesh, but with us is Adonai Eloheinu to help us and to fight our battles.” So the people were encouraged by the words of King Hezekiah of Judah. 9After this, when King Sennacherib of Assyria, while he and all his forces with him were besieging Lachish, sent his servants to Jerusalem to Hezekiah king of Judah and to all Judah who were in Jerusalem, saying: 10“Thus says King Sennacherib of Assyria, ‘What are you relying on that you would stay in Jerusalem, under siege? 11Is not Hezekiah misleading you, to let you die by famine and thirst, saying, “Adonai Eloheinu will deliver us from the hand of the king of Assyria?” 12Has not the same Hezekiah removed His high places and His altars, and commanded Judah and Jerusalem saying, “You shall worship before one altar and upon it you shall burn incense?” 13Do not you know what I and my fathers have done to all the peoples of the lands? Were the gods of the nations of the lands ever able to deliver their land out of my hand? 14Who among all the gods of these nations—which my fathers utterly destroyed—could deliver his people from my hand? How then is your God able to deliver you from my hand? 15So now, do not let Hezekiah deceive you or mislead you like this. Do not believe him, for no god of any nation or any kingdom has been able to deliver his people from my hand and from the hand of my fathers. How much less will your God deliver you from my hand!’” 16His servants spoke further against Adonai Elohim and against His servant Hezekiah. 17Sennacharib also wrote letters reviling Adonai, the God of Israel, speaking against Him saying, “Just as the gods of the nations of the lands have not delivered their people from my hand, so the God of Hezekiah shall not deliver His people from my hand.” 18Then they cried out loudly in Hebrew to the people of Jerusalem who were on the wall to terrify and frighten them, in order to capture the city. 19They spoke against the God of Jerusalem as of the gods of the peoples of the earth made by human hands. 20Then King Hezekiah and the prophet Isaiah the son of Amoz prayed about this and cried out to heaven. 21Then Adonai sent an angel who annihilated every mighty warrior, commander and officer in the camp of the king of Assyria. So he withdrew in disgrace to his own land. When he entered the house of his god some of his own children struck him down with the sword. 22Thus Adonai delivered Hezekiah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem from the hand of Sennacherib the king of Assyria, and from the hand of all, and helped them in every way. 23Many brought offerings to Adonai in Jerusalem and valuable gifts to King Hezekiah of Judah. From then on he was highly regarded in the eyes of all the nations.

Hezekiah’s Pride and Humility

24In those days Hezekiah became deathly ill, but he prayed to Adonai who responded to him and gave him a sign. 25But Hezekiah did not respond according to the favor done to him. His heart became haughty, so wrath came upon him and upon Judah and Jerusalem. 26Then Hezekiah humbled himself for the pride in his heart—both he and the inhabitants of Jerusalem—so that the wrath of Adonai did not fall upon them in the days of Hezekiah. 27Now Hezekiah had very abundant riches and honor. He even made treasuries for silver, gold, precious stones, spices, shields, and for all kinds of valuables, 28and storehouses for the harvest of grain, wine and oil, and stalls for all kinds of cattle, and sheepfolds for the flocks. 29Moreover, he built towns and acquired flocks and herds in abundance, for God had given him very many possessions. 30It was also Hezekiah who stopped the upper spring of the waters of Gihon and channeled them downward to the west side of the city of David. Hezekiah succeeded in all that he did. 31But when the ambassadors of the princes of Babylon were sent to him to inquire about the wonder that had happened in the land, God left him alone to test him, to know all that was in his heart.

Hezekiah’s Death and Honor

32Now the rest of the acts of Hezekiah and his good deeds, behold, they are written in the vision of the prophet Isaiah son of Amoz, in the book of the kings of Judah and Israel. 33So Hezekiah slept with his fathers and they buried him in the upper section of the tombs of the sons of David. All Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem honored him at his death. His son Manasseh became king in his place.

–from 2 Chronicles 32

Jesus didn’t give up! Jesus knew that in this world there will be trouble! Jesus overcame the world! Jesus conquered the grave! Jesus is the answer!

Turn to Jesus! Ask Jesus into your heart! Walk with Him and talk with Him throughout your day! Ask Him for wisdom and discernment! Seek Him and you will find Him! Be transformed by His love and His sacrifice! He gave His all for you and for me so that we can be saved! Will you receive the gift? Will you accept the gift? Will you invite Jesus into your life? Will you ask?

Bound and Sentenced

1Then Pilate took Yeshua and had Him scourged. 2The soldiers twisted together a crown of thorns and put it on His head, and dressed Him in a purple robe.3They kept coming up to Him, saying, “Hail, King of the Jews!” and slapping Him over and over. 4Pilate came out again. He said to them, “Look, I’m bringing Him out to you, to let you know that I find no case against Him.” 5So Yeshua came out, wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe. “Behold, the Man!” Pilate said to them. 6When the ruling kohanim and officers saw Him, they yelled out, “Execute Him! Execute Him!” Pilate said to them, “Take Him yourselves and execute Him! For I don’t find a case against Him.” 7The Judean leaders answered him, “We have a law, and according to the Torah He must die, because He claimed to be Ben-Elohim!” 8When Pilate heard this word, he became even more fearful. 9He went into the Praetorium again and said to Yeshua, “Where are You from?” But Yeshua gave him no answer. 10So Pilate said to Him, “You aren’t speaking to me? Don’t You know that I have the authority to release You, and I have the authority to crucify You?” 11Yeshua answered, “You would have no authority over Me if it hadn’t been given to you from above. For this reason, the one who handed Me over to you has the greater sin.” 12Pilate tried to let Him go after this; but the Judean leaders cried out, saying, “If you release this Man, you are no friend of Caesar. Everyone who makes himself a king opposes Caesar!” 13So when Pilate heard these words, he brought Yeshua out and sat down on the judge’s seat at a place called the Stone Pavement (but in Aramaic, Gabbatha). 14It was the Day of Preparation for Passover, about the sixth hour. And Pilate said to the Judean leaders, “Behold, your king!” 15They shouted back, “Take Him away! Take Him away! Execute Him!” Pilate said to them, “Should I execute your king?” The ruling kohanim answered, “We have no king but Caesar!” 16Finally, Pilate handed Yeshua over to be crucified.

A Sacrificial Death

17Then they took Yeshua. He went out, carrying His own crossbar, to the Place of a Skull, which in Aramaic is called Golgotha. 18There they crucified Him, and with Him two others, one on each side and Yeshua in between. 19Pilate also wrote a sign and put it on the execution stake. It was written, “YESHUA HA-NATZRATI, THE KING OF THE JEWS.” 20Many Judeans read this sign, because the place where Yeshua was executed was near the city; it was written in Hebrew, Latin, and Greek. 21The ruling kohanim of the Judeans were saying to Pilate, “Don’t write, ‘The King of the Jews,’ but that He said, ‘I am King of the Jews.’” 22“What I have written, I have written,” Pilate answered. 23So the soldiers, when they executed Yeshua, took His outer garments and made four parts, a part for each soldier. They took His tunic also, but it was seamless, woven top to bottom in one piece. 24So they said to one another, “Let’s not tear it, but cast lots for it to see whose it will be.” This was so the Scripture would be fulfilled, “They divided My garments among them, and for My clothing they cast lots.” So the soldiers did these things. 25Standing near the execution stake of Yeshua were His mother, His mother’s sister, Miriam the wife of Clopas, and Miriam from Magdala. 26Yeshua saw His mother and the disciple whom He loved standing nearby. He tells His mother, “Woman, behold, your son!” 27Then He tells the disciple, “Behold, your mother!” From that very hour, the disciple took her into his own home. 28After this, when Yeshua knew that all things were now completed, to fulfill the Scripture He said, “I am thirsty.” 29A jar full of sour wine was sitting there, so they put a sponge soaked with the sour wine on a hyssop branch and brought it to His mouth. 30When Yeshua tasted the sour wine, He said, “It is finished!” And He bowed His head and gave up His spirit. 31It was the Day of Preparation, and the next day was a festival Shabbat. So that the bodies should not remain on the execution stake during Shabbat, the Judean leaders asked Pilate to have the legs broken and to have the bodies taken away. 32So the soldiers came and broke the legs of the first and then the other who had been executed with Yeshua. 33Now when they came to Yeshua and saw that He was already dead, they did not break His legs. 34But one of the soldiers pierced His side with a spear, and immediately blood and water came out. 35He who has seen it has testified, and his testimony is true. He knows that he is telling the truth, so that you also may believe. 36These things happened so that the Scripture would be fulfilled, “Not a bone of His shall be broken.” 37And again another Scripture says, “They shall look on Him whom they have pierced.”

Buried in a Rich Man’s Tomb

38After these things, Joseph of Arimathea asked Pilate if he could take Yeshua’s body away. Joseph was a disciple of Yeshua, but secretly for fear of the Judean leaders. Pilate gave permission, so Joseph came and took the body away. 39Nicodemus, who had first visited Yeshua at night, also came bringing a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about a hundred pounds. 40Then they took the body of Yeshua and wrapped it in linen with the spices, as is the Jewish burial custom. 41Now in the place where He was executed, there was a garden. In the garden was a new tomb where no one had yet been buried. 42Because it was the Jewish Day of Preparation and the tomb was nearby, they laid Yeshua there.

–from John 19

 

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Hope! Do you know where to go to get some?


Where are you looking? Where are you going? What are you trying to find? What do you think it looks like? How will you know when you have found it? How will you know when you have arrived?

Do you know that hope is? Doing a search online shows…

hope
[hōp]

NOUN

  1. a feeling of expectation and desire for a certain thing to happen:
    “he looked through her belongings in the hope of coming across some information” ·

    [more]
    synonyms: aspiration · desire · wish · expectation · ambition · aim ·

    [more]
  2. archaic
    a feeling of trust.

VERB

  1. want something to happen or be the case:
    “he’s hoping for an offer of compensation” ·

    [more]
    synonyms: expect · anticipate · look for · be hopeful of ·

    [more]
Powered by Oxford Dictionaries · © Oxford University Press · Translation by Bing Translator

But is that the hope the Bible speaks of? Checking, we find…

To trust in, wait for, look for, or desire something or someone; or to expect something beneficial in the future.

from http://www.biblestudytools.com/dictionary/hope/

A\nother resources puts the Bible’s meaning this way…

“a strong and confident expectation.”

from https://bible.org/article/hope

Not a wishy washy thought, but a strong and confident expectation for what is yet to come!

Hope isn’t to be wishful thinking, it is to be confident expectations!

Where does your hope come from? My hope comes from God! In Him I can trust! In Him I can depend! In Him I am confident!

So if you don’t have hope in God? Do you have hope in something that will get you through the storms of life? Do you have hope in something beyond today? Where does your hope come from?

Turn to God! He is loving! He is trustworthy! He is faithful!

Why not start today by inviting Jesus into your life and be transformed forever?


Today’s reading begins in Isaiah…

Sign of Nakedness

1In the year that the Tartan came to Ashdod, when Sargon the king of Assyria sent him and he fought against Ashdod and captured it, 2at that time Adonai spoke by Isaiah the son of Amoz saying, “Go, remove the sackcloth from your loins and your sandals from your feet.” So he did so, walking naked and barefoot. 3Then Adonai said: “Just as My servant Isaiah has walked naked and barefoot for three years, as a sign and a wonder against Egypt and Ethiopia, 4so will the king of Assyria lead away the captives of Egypt and the exiles of Ethiopia, young and old, naked and barefoot, with their buttocks uncovered, to Egypt’s shame. 5So they will be dismayed and ashamed, because they hoped in Ethiopia and boasted in Egypt. 6Then the inhabitants of the coastland will say in that day, ‘Look, such is our hope—there we fled for help to be delivered from the king of Assyria! Now, how will we escape?’”

–from Isaiah 20

Do you see what is going on? Are you paying attention to what is going one? Do know realize what is taking place? Do you see those who are trying to lower expectations? Do you see those who are going towards the lowest common denominator rather than reaching for the stars? the best? the goal?

Watchman, Pay Attention!

1The burden of the desert by the sea: As windstorms sweep over the South, so it comes from the desert, a terrifying land. 2A harsh vision has been shown to me: “The traitor betrays, and the plunderer plunders. Go up, Elam! Besiege, Media! I have put an end to all her groaning.” 3Therefore my body is filled with pain. Pangs have taken hold of me like the pangs of a woman in labor. I am bewildered by what I hear, terrified by what I see. 4My heart is bewildered, terror overwhelms me. The twilight I longed for has been turned into trembling. 5Set the table, spread out the cloth! Eat! Drink! “Rise up, you princes, oil the shield!” 6For Adonai has said to me. “Go, post a watchman— let him declare what he sees! 7When he sees a chariot with a pair of horsemen, riders on donkeys, riders on camels, let him pay attention— very close attention!” 8Then he cried out like a lion: “Upon the watch tower, Adonai, I stand continually in the daytime, and stay at my post every night. 9Look! Here comes a chariot of men, with a pair of horsemen.” Then one answered and said, “Fallen, fallen is Babylon! All the images of her gods are broken on the ground.” 10O my people, crushed on the threshing floor, what I heard from Adonai Tzva’ot, God of Israel, I have declared to you. 11The burden of Dumah: One calls to me from Seir, “Watchman, what is left of the night? Watchman, what is left of the night?” 12The watchman said, “Morning comes, yet also it is night.” If you would inquire, inquire. Come back again.” 13The burden of Arabia: In the desert brush of Arabia you will stay for the night, you caravans of Dedanites. 14To him who is thirsty bring water, inhabitants of the land of Tema, meet the fugitive with food. 15For they fled from swords, from drawn sword, from bent bow and distress of war. 16For thus Adonai said to me, “Within a year (as with the years of a hired worker), all the glory of Kedar will cease, 17and the remainder of the number of the archers, the mighty men of the sons of Kedar, will be few. For Adonai God of Israel has spoken.”

–from Isaiah 21

So will you confess what is taking place? Will you return to God? Will you learn His ways? Will you meditate on His Word daily? Will you take care of your health? Will you expand your mind? Will you open your heart and invite Jesus in? Will you soften your heart? Do you need to have your life shaken up in order to get your attention? Do you need someone to come with a jackhammer to be able to get into your heart? What’s it going to take?

Confess, Return and Learn

1Of David, a contemplative song. Blessed is the one whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is pardoned. 2Blessed is the one whose guilt Adonai does not count, and in whose spirit there is no deceit. 3When I kept silent, my bones became brittle through my groaning all day long. 4For day and night Your hand was heavy upon me. My strength was drained as in the droughts of summer. Selah 5Then I acknowledged my sin to You and did not hide my iniquity. I said: “I confess my transgressions to Adonai,” and You forgave the guilt of my sin. Selah 6So let everyone who is godly pray to You in a time when You may be found. When great floodwaters rise, they will not reach him. 7You are my hiding place— You will protect me from distress. You surround me with songs of deliverance. Selah 8“I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go. I will give counsel—My eye is on you. 9Do not be like the horse or the mule, which have no understanding, and must be held in with bit and bridle or they will not come to you.” 10Many are the sorrows of the wicked, but lovingkindness surrounds the one who trusts in Adonai. 11Be glad in Adonai and rejoice, you righteous, and shout for joy, all who are upright in heart.

–from Psalms 32

Will you trust in Jesus? Will your hope be in Him? What would it take to get your attention? What would it take to change your mind? What would it take to open up your heart?

Do you feel that need in your heart? Do you feel that void that you keep trying to fill with things of the world but nothing is working or has worked yet? That is because it is a hole that we are supposed to turn to God and ask Him in to fill it! Is today your day?

Anticipating Hostility at Sukkot

1After these events, Yeshua was walking about in the Galilee. He did not want to walk in Judea, because the Judean leaders wanted to kill Him. 2Now the Jewish Feast of Tabernacles was near. 3Therefore His brothers said to Him, “Leave here and go to Judea, so Your disciples also may see the works You are doing. 4No one who wants to be well known does everything in secret. If You are doing these things, show Yourself to the world!” 5For not even His brothers were trusting in Him. 6Therefore Yeshua said to them, “My time has not yet come, but your time is always at hand. 7The world cannot hate you, but it hates Me because I testify that its works are evil. 8You go on up to the Feast. I’m not going to this feast, because My time hasn’t yet fully come.” 9After saying these things, He stayed in the Galilee. 10But after His brothers went to the Feast, He also went, not openly but secretly. 11Then the Judean leaders were searching for Him at the Feast and kept asking, “Where is that fellow?” 12There was a lot of murmuring about Him in the crowds. Some were saying, “He is good.” But others were saying, “Not so! He leads the people astray.” 13Yet no one spoke openly about Him for fear of the Judean leaders.

Teaching at the Temple

14About halfway through the Feast, Yeshua went up to the Temple and began teaching. 15Then the Judean leaders were amazed, saying, “How does this man know so much, having never been taught?” 16Yeshua answered, “My teaching is not from Me, but from Him who sent Me. 17If anyone wants to do His will, he will know whether My teaching comes from God or it is Myself speaking. 18Whoever speaks from himself seeks his own glory; but He who seeks the glory of the One who sent Him, He is true and there is no unrighteousness in Him. 19Hasn’t Moses given you the Torah? Yet none of you keeps it. Why are you trying to kill Me?” 20The crowd answered, “You have a demon! Who’s trying to kill you?” 21Yeshua answered, “I did one good work, and all of you are amazed. 22Because Moses has given you circumcision (though it is not from Moses, but from the patriarchs), you circumcise a man on Shabbat. 23If a man receives circumcision on Shabbat so that the Torah of Moses may not be broken, why are you angry that I healed a man’s whole body on Shabbat? 24Do not judge by appearance, but judge righteously.” 25Then some of the people from Jerusalem were saying, “Isn’t this the person they’re trying to kill? 26Look, He speaks openly and they’re saying nothing to Him. Can it be that the leaders know He is the Messiah? 27But we know where this person is from. But the Messiah, whenever He may come, no one knows where He is from.” 28Then, while teaching in the Temple courts, Yeshua cried out, “You know both who I am and where I am from! I have not come on My own, but the One who sent Me is true. You do not know Him, 29but I know Him because I am from Him and He sent Me.” 30Then they were trying to seize Him; but no one laid a hand on Him, because His hour had not yet come. 31Yet many from the crowd believed in Him and were saying, “When the Messiah comes, He won’t perform more signs than this person has, will He?” 32The Pharisees heard people in the crowd murmuring these things about Him, and the ruling kohanim and Pharisees sent guards to arrest Him. 33Yeshua said, “I am with you only a little while longer, and then I am going to the One who sent Me. 34You will look for Me but will not find Me. Where I am, you cannot come.” 35The Judean leaders then said among themselves, “Where is this person about to go that we shall not find Him? He’s not going to the Diaspora to teach the Greeks, is He? 36What did He mean by saying, ‘You will look for Me but will not find Me. Where I am, you cannot come’?”

Satisfying Spiritual Thirst

37On the last and greatest day of the Feast, Yeshua stood up and cried out loudly, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. 38Whoever believes in Me, as the Scripture says, ‘out of his innermost being will flow rivers of living water.’” 39Now He said this about the Ruach, whom those who trusted in Him were going to receive; for the Ruach was not yet given, since Yeshua was not yet glorified. 40When they heard these words, some of the crowd said, “This man really is the Prophet.” 41Others were saying, “This is the Messiah.” Still others were saying, “The Messiah doesn’t come from the Galilee, does He? 42Didn’t the Scripture say that the Messiah comes from the seed of David and from Bethlehem, David’s town?” 43So a division arose in the crowd because of Yeshua. 44Some wanted to capture Him, but no one laid hands on Him.

Religious Adversaries

45Then the guards returned to the ruling kohanim and Pharisees, who asked them, “Why didn’t you bring Him?” 46“Never has anyone spoken like this man,” the guards answered. 47The Pharisees responded, “You haven’t been led astray also, have you? 48Have any of the rulers or Pharisees believed in Him? 49No, but this mob that doesn’t know the Torah—they are cursed!” 50Nicodemus, the one who had come to Yeshua before and was one of them, said to them, 51“Our Torah doesn’t judge a man unless it first hears from him and knows what he’s doing, does it?” 52They answered him, “You aren’t from the Galilee too, are you? Search, and see that no prophet comes out of the Galilee!” 53Then everyone went to his own house.

–from John 7

Are you thirsting? Are you wishing you could just fill that hole? Are you wanting to have a spring within you that can fill you to overflowing with joy, peace, hope? Turn to Jesus! Ask Him into your heart! Allow Him to do a work in you! Allow God’s Spirit to lead you and guide you! Be transformed from the inside out! Let’s build our lives on the foundation Jesus has provide with Jesus as the cornerstone to help us build it up straight and strong to last!

Building Together on God’s Foundation

1And I, brothers and sisters, could not speak to you as Spirit-filled but as worldly—as infants in Messiah. 2I gave you milk, not solid food, for you were not yet ready. Indeed, even now you are not yet ready, 3for you are still worldly. For since there is jealousy and strife among you, aren’t you worldly and walking in a human way? 4For when one says, “I follow Paul,” and another, “I follow Apollos,” are you not mere humans? 5What then is Apollos? And what is Paul? Servants through whom you came to trust—and to each as the Lord gave. 6I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the increase. 7So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God who makes things grow. 8Now he who plants and he who waters work as one, but each will receive his own reward according to his own labor. 9For we are God’s co-workers; you are God’s field, God’s building. 10According to the grace of God which was given to me, like a skilled master builder I laid a foundation, and another builds on it. But let each consider carefully how he builds on it. 11For no one can lay any other foundation than what is already laid—which is Yeshua the Messiah. 12Now if anyone builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, 13each one’s work will become clear. For the Day will show it, because it is to be revealed by fire; and the fire itself will test each one’s work—what sort it is. 14If anyone’s work built on the foundation survives, he will receive a reward. 15If anyone’s work is burned up, he will suffer loss—he himself will be saved, but as through fire. 16Don’t you know that you are God’s temple and that the Ruach Elohim dwells among you? 17If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy him; for God’s temple is holy, and you are that temple. 18Let no one deceive himself. If anyone thinks he is wise in this age, let him become a fool so he may become wise. 19For the wisdom of this world is foolishness in the sight of God. For it is written, “He catches the clever in their craftiness.” 20And again, “The Lord knows the thoughts of the wise, that they are useless.” 21So let no one boast about men. For all things are yours— 22whether Paul or Apollos or Kefa, or the world or life or death, or things present or things to come. All are yours, 23and you are Messiah’s, and Messiah is God’s.

–from 1 Corinthians 3

 

Let us not forget…


Praying for the families and friends of those impacted by the 9/11 event. The tragedy that had me watching TV before work trying to figure out what was going on just as before my eyes the 2nd plane ran into the other tower. God be with them. God bless the USA. Help us to draw closer to you. Help us to humble ourselves and pray. Help us turn back to you. And Lord, allow people from around the world to turn to you too. Lord, Your Word promises…

if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land. — 2 Chronicles 7:14

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer…

Help us Lord to honor our mothers and our fathers that we may receive the promise from your commandments…

Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the LORD your God is giving you. –Exodus 20:12

and repeated as…

“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 6:2-3

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer…

Help us to walk in your ways! Helps us to answer your call! Help us to be good stewards of the gifts and talents you have given us! Helps us to do what is right in your eyes!

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer…

Help us stay humble and walk with humility! Help us to not grow proud or haughty! Help us to serve and even when leading be servant leaders in Jesus’ way! Help us from being our own worst enemy and bringing judgment upon ourselves! Help us Lord to finish strong and serve you all the days of our lives!

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer…


Today’s reading begins in 2 Chronicles…

Uzziah Strengthens Judah’s Defenses

1Then all the people of Judah took Uzziah, who was 16 years old, and made him king in place of his father Amaziah. 2He built Eloth and restored it to Judah after the king slept with his fathers. 3Uzziah was 16 years old when he became king, and he reigned 52 years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Jecoliah from Jerusalem. 4He did what was right in the eyes of Adonai just as his father Amaziah had done. 5He continued to seek God in the days of Zechariah, who had understanding through the visions of God. As long as he sought Adonai, God made him prosper. 6He went out and fought the Philistines and breached the wall of Gath, the wall of Jabneh and the wall of Ashdod. He built cities in Ashdod and among the Philistines. 7God helped him against the Philistines, against the Arabs who dwelt in Gur-Baal, and against the Meunites. 8The Ammonites paid tribute to Uzziah, and his fame spread abroad even to the border of Egypt, for he became exceedingly strong. 9Moreover, Uzziah built towers in Jerusalem at the Corner Gate, the Valley Gate and at the Angle, and fortified them. 10He also built towers in the wilderness and dug out many cisterns because he had much livestock, and he had farmers in the foothills and in the plain and vinedressers in the mountains and in the fertile fields—for he loved the soil. 11Uzziah also had a well-trained army ready to go out to battle by divisions, according to the numbers mustered by the hand of Jeiel the scribe and Maaseiah the official, under Hananiah, one of the king’s chieftains. 12The total number of family leaders over the fighting men was 2,600, 13and under their command was an army of 307,500 trained for war with mighty power to support the king against the enemy. 14Uzziah provided shields, spears, helmets, body armor, bows and slingstones for the entire army. 15In Jerusalem he made machines designed by skillful men to be used on the towers and on the corners to shoot arrows and hurl large stones. So his fame spread far, for he was marvelously helped until he became strong.

Uzziah Usurps the Kohanim

16But when he became strong, his heart grew so haughty that he acted corruptly. For he trespassed against Adonai his God by entering into the Temple of Adonai to burn incense upon the altar of incense. 17Then Azariah the kohen with 80 valiant kohanim of Adonai followed him in. 18They opposed Uzziah the king and said to him, “It is not for you, Uzziah, to burn incense to Adonai, but for the kohanim, the descendants of Aaron, who have been consecrated to burn incense. Get out of the Sanctuary, for you have acted unfaithfully. You will have no honor from Adonai Elohim.” 19Then Uzziah, who had a censer in his hand ready to burn incense, became angry. While he was raging at the kohanim tza’arat broke out on his forehead right in front of the kohanim in the House of Adonai, beside the incense altar. 20When Azariah the chief kohen and all the other kohanim stared at him, behold, his forehead had tza’arat! So they rushed him out of there. Indeed, he himself hurried to get out because Adonai had smitten him. 21King Uzziah had tza’arat until the day of his death. He lived in a separate house with tza’arat, for he was cut off from the House of Adonai. Jotham his son was in charge of the king’s house and governed the people of the land. 22Now the rest of the acts of Uzziah, from beginning to end, were recorded by the prophet Isaiah, the son of Amoz. 23So Uzziah slept with his fathers and they buried him with his fathers in the field of burial that belonged to the kings, for they said: “He had tza’arat.” Then Jotham his son became king in his place.

–from 2 Chronicles 26

Help us Lord to humble ourselves and turn from our wicked ways! Help us Lord to take hold of the salvation You have offered and provided through Your Son Jesus! Help us Lord to have new hearts – clean hearts! Help us Lord to take hold of the truth that can set us free! Help us Lord to realize the power of forgiveness!

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer…

Judah’s Encounter with Adonai

1In the year of King Uzziah’s death, I saw Adonai sitting on a throne, high and lifted up, and the train of His robe filled the Temple. 2Seraphim were standing above Him. Each had six wings: with two he covered his face and with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. 3One called out to another, and said: “Holy, holy, holy, is Adonai-Tzva’ot! The whole earth is full of His glory.” 4Then the posts of the door trembled at the voice of those who called, and the House was filled with smoke. 5Then I said: “Oy to me! For I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I am dwelling among a people of unclean lips. For my eyes have seen the King, Adonai-Tzva’ot!” 6Then one of the seraphim flew to me, with a glowing coal in his hand, which he had taken with tongs from the altar. 7 He touched my mouth with it and said: “Behold, this has touched your lips. Your iniquity is taken away, and your sins atoned for.” 8Then I heard the voice of Adonai saying: “Whom should I send, and who will go for Us?” So I said, “Hineni. Send me.” 9Then He said: “Go! Tell this people: ‘Hear without understanding, and see without perceiving.’ 10Make the heart of this people fat, their ears heavy, and their eyes blind. Else they would see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and return, and be healed.” 11Then I said, “Adonai, how long?” He answered, “Until cities are laid waste and without inhabitant, houses are without people, and the land is utterly desolate. 12Adonai will drive people far away. The desertion of the land will be vast. 13Though a tenth still be in it, it will again be burned. As a terebinth tree or as an oak whose stump remains when cut down, so the holy seed will be the stump.”

–from Isaiah 6

Lord, I stand in the gap! Lord, even as You had prophesied many years ago while I was yet a foreigner in the land, I lift up these people and I stand in the gap asking for Your wisdom, Your strength, Your courage, Your direction, Your discernment! As Jesus bridged the gap saving me and restoring my life to you through forgiveness undeserved by your grace and your mercy, I ask Lord that You will help to bridge the gap as I stand here to answer Your call for this nation. Lord, allow your reassurance bring a peace that goes beyond all understanding over all of our hearts that are drawn to you! Lord, allow your reassurance bring boldness to speak out Your love, Your hope, Your truth into this nation and world around us! Help us Lord to be salt and light! Help us to point people back to you in Jesus’ name!

I looked for someone among them who would build up the wall and stand before me in the gap on behalf of the land so I would not have to destroy it, but I found no one.  –Ezekiel 22:30

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer…

Reassurance Regarding a Threat

1Now it came about in the days of Ahaz son of Jotham, son of Uzziah, king of Judah, that King Rezin of Aram and King Pekah, son of Remaliah of Israel, went up to Jerusalem to war against it, but could not prevail against it. 2When it was reported to the house of David saying: “Aram is camped in Ephraim,” his heart as well as the heart of his people shook like the trees of the forest shaking with the wind. 3Then Adonai said to Isaiah: “Go out now to meet Ahaz—you and Shear-jashub your son, at the end of the aqueduct from the upper pool, in the highway of the fullers’ field; 4and say to him, ‘Keep calm and be quiet. Do not fear nor be faint-hearted because of these two stubs of smoldering firebrands, because of the fierce anger of Rezin and Aram, nor of the son of Remaliah, 5because Aram has plotted harm against you, along with Ephraim and the son of Remaliah saying, 6“Let us go up against Judah, terrorize it, divide it for ourselves, and appoint Tabeel’s son as king in the midst of it.” 7Thus says Adonai Elohim: “It will not stand, nor will it occur. 8For the head of Aram is Damascus, and the head of Damascus is Rezin. Within 65 years Ephraim will be broken and not be a people. 9The head of Ephraim is Samaria, and the head of Samaria is Remaliah’s son. If you do not trust, you will not stand.”

The Sign of Immanuel

10Then Adonai spoke again to Ahaz saying, 11“Ask for a sign from Adonai your God—from the depths of Sheol or the heights of Heaven.” 12But Ahaz said, “I won’t ask—I wouldn’t test Adonai!” 13Then he said, “Hear now, house of David! Is it a small thing for you to weary men? Will you also weary my God? 14Therefore Adonai Himself will give you a sign: Behold, the virgin will conceive. When she is giving birth to a son, she will call his name Immanuel. 15He will be eating curds and honey by the time he knows to refuse evil and choose good. 16For before the boy knows to refuse evil and choose good, the land of the two kings you dread will be abandoned. 17Adonai will bring—on you, on your people and on your father’s house such days as have never come since the day Ephraim separated from Judah—the king of Assyria! 18In that day Adonai will whistle for the fly at the source of the Nile of Egypt and for the bee in the land of Assyria. 19Then they will come, all of them— and will settle in the steep wadis and in the clefts of the cliffs and in all the thorn bushes and in all the watering holes. 20In that day Adonai will shave— with a razor hired beyond the River— with the king of Assyria— the head and the hair of the legs, and even clip off the beard. 21In that day it will be that a man will rear a calf and two sheep, 22and from the abundant milk they give, he will eat curds— for anyone left in the land will eat curds and honey. 23In that day it will be that every place where there were 1,000 vines worth 1,000 silver shekels will become briers and thorns. 24With arrows and bows one will come there, since all the land will become briers and thorns. 25As for all the hills that were tilled with the hoe—you will not go there for fear of briers and thorns. Instead it will be for grazing of oxen and roaming of sheep.

–from Isaiah 7

Don’t lose hope! Don’t give up! Don’t give in! Trust in God! Hope in God! Give it to God!

Help us Lord to be who You created us to be! Help Lord to share what You have given to us! Help us Lord to be conduits of Your love into the world around us that others may come to see and know and hear of Your greatness!

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer!

1Yeshua was telling them, “Amen, I tell you, there are some standing here who will never taste death until they see the kingdom of God come with power!”

A Glimpse of His Glory

2After six days, Yeshua takes with Him Peter and Jacob and John, and brings them up a high mountain by themselves. And He was transfigured before them. 3His clothes became radiant and brilliantly white, whiter than any launderer on earth could bleach them. 4Then Elijah appeared to them with Moses, and they were talking with Yeshua. 5Peter responds to Yeshua, “Rabbi, it’s good for us to be here. Let’s make three sukkot—one for You, and one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” 6(He didn’t know what to say, for they were terrified.) 7Then a cloud came, overshadowing them; and out of the cloud came a voice, “This is My Son, whom I love. Listen to Him!” 8Suddenly when they looked around, they no longer saw anyone with them except Yeshua. 9As they were coming down from the mountain, Yeshua ordered them not to tell anyone what they had seen, until the Son of Man rose up from the dead. 10They kept this word to themselves, discussing among themselves what it is to rise up from the dead. 11And they questioned Him, saying, “Why do the Torah scholars say that Elijah must come first?” 12Now He told them, “Indeed Elijah comes first; he restores all things. And how is it written that the Son of Man must suffer much and be treated with contempt? 13I tell you that Elijah has come, and they did to him whatever they wanted, just as it is written about him.”

The Secret of Prayer

14When they came to the disciples, they saw a big crowd around them and the Torah scholars arguing with them. 15Suddenly, when the whole crowd saw Yeshua, they were amazed and began running to greet Him. 16He questioned them, “What are you arguing about with them?” 17And a man from the crowd answered Him, “Teacher, I brought You my son, who has a spirit that makes him mute. 18Whenever it seizes him, it throws him down; he foams at the mouth, grinds his teeth, and becomes stiff. I told Your disciples to drive it out, but they couldn’t!” 19And answering them, He said, “Oh faithless generation, how long shall I be with you? How long shall I put up with you? Bring him to Me.” 20They brought the boy to Yeshua. When the spirit saw Him, immediately it threw the boy into a convulsion. The boy fell to the ground and began rolling around and foaming at the mouth. 21Yeshua asked the father, “How long has this been happening to him?” “Since he was a child,” the man answered. 22“It has often thrown him into fire or water to destroy him. But if You can do anything, have compassion and help us!” 23“‘If You can’?” Yeshua said to him. “All things are possible for one who believes!” 24Immediately the boy’s father cried out, “I believe! Help my unbelief!” 25When Yeshua saw that a crowd was gathering fast, He rebuked the unclean spirit, telling it, “I command you, deaf and mute spirit, come out of him and do not ever enter him again!” 26After howling and shaking the boy wildly, it came out. The boy became so much like a corpse that many were saying, “He’s dead!” 27But Yeshua took him by the hand and lifted him, and the boy stood up. 28After Yeshua came into the house, His disciples began questioning Him in private, “Why couldn’t we drive it out?” 29And He said to them, “This kind cannot come out except by prayer.” 30They left from there and passed through the Galilee. Yeshua didn’t want anyone to know, 31for He was teaching His disciples and telling them, “The Son of Man is going to be delivered into the hands of men, and they will kill Him. And after He is killed, three days later He will rise up.” 32But the disciples didn’t understand this statement, and they were afraid to question Him about it.

The Secret of Childlike Humility

33Then they came to Capernaum. And when Yeshua was in the house, He began to ask the disciples, “What were you discussing on the way?” 34But they kept quiet, because on the way they had argued with one another about who was the greatest. 35Sitting down, He called the Twelve and said to them, “If any man wants to be first, he shall be least of all and the servant of everyone.” 36Taking a small child, He set him in the midst of them. And taking him in His arms, He said to them, 37“Whoever welcomes one of these children in My name, welcomes Me; and whoever welcomes Me, welcomes not Me but the One who sent Me.” 38John said to Him, “Teacher, we saw someone driving out demons in Your name, and we tried to stop him because he wasn’t following us.” 39But Yeshua responded, “Don’t stop him! No one who does a miracle in My name will be able soon afterward to speak evil about Me. 40He who is not against us is for us. 41For whoever gives you a cup of water to drink in My name because you belong to Messiah, amen I tell you, he will never lose his reward.” 42“But whoever causes one of these little ones who trust in Me to stumble, it would be better for him to have a heavy millstone put around his neck and to be thrown into the sea!”

The Secret of Salt

43“And if your hand causes you to stumble, cut it off! It is better for you to enter into life crippled than, having two hands, to go to Gehenna, into the unquenchable fire. 44[footnote: Verses omitted; some mss. read: where their worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched.] 45And if your foot causes you to stumble, cut it off! It’s better for you to enter life lame than, having your two feet, to be thrown into Gehenna. 46[footnote: Verses omitted; some mss. read: where their worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched.] 47If your eye causes you to stumble, tear it out! It is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye than, having two eyes, to be thrown into Gehenna, 48where ‘their worm does not die and the fire is not quenched.’ 49“For everyone will be salted with fire. 50Salt is good; but if the salt becomes unsalty, with what will you flavor it? Have salt in yourselves, and keep shalom with one another.”

–from Mark 9

Let’s follow the pattern Jesus gave us to pray…

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name

Thank you God for your love and and this life! You are so awesome and my words can never bring to view your greatness for you are amazing! Lord may my life today glorify You and may in and through it all you receive the praise, the honor, and the glory.

Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven

Lord, not my will, but your will be done today in and through my life. Grant me wisdom to know what to do and what to say, what not to do and what not to say, so that in all I do, you will be glorified on earth as you are in heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread

Lord, You know what this day will have need of and so I give my hands up to You asking for Your provision for this day. I ask Lord that You will provide for my needs, the needs of my family and friends, the needs of those You will bring into my life today. The earth and everything it is belongs to You so I know that You can help me with my needs and to use me as a good steward of all that you have given me. Help me today with wisdom and an obedient heart to do Your will and share Your love and grace to the world around me. I know Lord that You will provide even with the little I have for You can multiply even the little I have for Your glory

Forgive us our trespases

Lord, forgive me. You know my mind and my heart. You know the things I have left undone. You know the things I have left unsaid. Help me I pray to right my wrongs so that I don’t leave a foothold for the devil to try and trip me up. I ask that by the blood of Jesus it will be separated as far as the east is from the west. And help me Lord to be able to pass on this grace to those in my life.

As we forgive those who trespass against us

Lord, I forgive them all. As You have taught me, as I forgive others, You will forgive me. As You have taught me, forgiveness is the key to true freedom. So that the bitter root won’t have a place to take root in my heart, I forgive them. So that the devil can’t get a foothold in my life, I forgive them. So that You will be glorified, I will forgive them.

Lead us not into temptation

Lord, grant me wisdom and discernment so that I will not fall into temptation. In this world we will have trouble but I will hold onto the fact that Jesus has overcome the world. I will consider it pure joy when I face trials of many kinds because I know it is working in me to help me be complete and lacking nothing.

Deliver us from evil

Help us Lord from getting tripped up or falling into the temptations of the devil. Help us Lord to not fall for his lies and deception. Help us Lord to have eyes to see and ears to hear so that we know Your voice and can rebuke him. Help us Lord to resist the devil for Your Word tells us that if we resist the devil, he will flee.

For thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory for ever and ever. Amen.

Thank you God! May in and through it all, You receive the praise, the honor, and the glory in Jesus’ name. Amen.

 

 

It’s not all about you! It’s not all about stuff! It’s not about having to, it’s about getting to!


It’s not all about feelings, because feelings can be wrong. It’s not all about emotions, because emotions can be wrong. What are you using as your reference point for a source of truth and direction? Does your reference point stand firm and unmoving? Does your reference point shift and move? Have you picked up the Word of God? Are you hearing the direction of loving God and loving people? Are you hearing the calling to a higher standard? Have you invited to be the center and invited Him into your heart? Are you letting your light shine so that others will see it and glorify your Father in heaven? Are you willing to yield authority to God? You do realize that every good and perfect gift comes for your Father in heaven right (aka God)? Where are your morals? What is the makeup of the moral fabric? Are you able to distinguish between right and wrong? What about scientific stuff? What about technology? When God gave dominion over all the earth to man, the expectation was that man would have the fixed reference point of God and that we would yield to His will! God wants a relationship with each of us! Will you have a relationship with Him today? Have you already started on? Will you get started today? Will you start to look to the bible as your reference point? God is the unmovable reference point you need for life – He is the same yesterday, today, and forever!


Today’s reading continues in Ecclesiastes…

Futility of Human Pleasures

1I said within myself, “Come now, I will test you with pleasure to see what is good.” Yet behold, this too was meaningless. 2I said of laughter, “It is madness!” and of pleasure, “What does it accomplish?” 3I thought deeply about how to cheer my flesh with wine—letting my heart guide me with wisdom—and how to grasp folly, so that I could see what was worthwhile for the sons of men to do under heaven during the few days of their lives. 4I increased my possessions. I built myself houses and I planted myself vineyards. 5I made royal gardens and parks for myself, and planted all kinds of fruit trees in them. 6I constructed for myself pools of water to irrigate a forest of flourishing trees. 7I purchased male and female servants and had other servants who were born in my house. I also owned more herds and flocks than all my predecessors in Jerusalem. 8I also amassed silver and gold for myself, as well as the treasure of kings and the provinces. I acquired male and female singers for myself, as well as the luxuries of humankind—vaults and vaults of them. 9So I became far wealthier than all before me in Jerusalem, yet my wisdom stayed with me. 10I denied myself nothing that my eyes desired; I withheld from my heart no enjoyment. My heart took delight from all my toil— this was my reward for all my labor. 11Yet when I considered all that my hands had done and the toil I had expended to accomplish it, behold, it all was futile and chasing after the wind. There was nothing to be gained under the sun.

Futility of Human Wisdom

12Then I turned to consider wisdom, madness and folly. For what more can the one who succeeds the king do than what he has already done? 13I realized that: Wisdom is more beneficial than folly as light is better than darkness. 14A wise man has his eyes in his head, while the fool walks in the darkness. Yet, I also came to realize that the same destiny befalls them both. 15Then said I in my heart: “I, even I, will have the same destiny as a fool. So why have I become so wise?” I said in my heart, “This too is meaningless.” 16For the wise man, together with the fool, is not remembered forever. For in the days to come both will be forgotten. Alas, the wise, just like the fool, must die! 17And so I hated life, because the work done under the sun was grievous to me. All is but vapor and chasing after the wind. 18I also hated all the fruit of my toil for which I had labored under the sun, because I must leave it to the one who comes after me. 19Who knows if he will be wise or a fool? Yet he will be master over all the fruit of my toil for which I had wisely labored under the sun. This too is futile. 20So I turned my heart over to despair over all the things for which I had toiled under the sun. 21For sometimes a man, who has labored with wisdom, knowledge and skill, must hand over as an inheritance to someone who did not work for it. This also is futile and a great misfortune. 22For what does a man get for all his toil and longing of his heart for which he labors under the sun? 23For all his days, his work is pain and grief. Even at night his mind does not rest. This also is futility. 24There is nothing better for people than to eat and drink, and to find enjoyment in their labor. This too, I perceived, is from the hand of God. 25For who can eat and who can have joy, apart from Him? 26For to the one who pleases Him, He gives wisdom, knowledge and joy, but to the sinner He gives the task of gathering and accumulating wealth to give it to one who pleases God. This also is only vapor and striving after the wind.

–from Ecclesiastes 2

Do you realize the season you are in? Do you realize the timing?

A Time For Everything

1For everything there is a season and a time for every activity under heaven: 2a time to give birth and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot what is planted; 3a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build up; 4a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance; 5a time to scatter stones and a time to gather stones, a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing; 6a time to seek and a time to lose, a time to keep and a time to discard; 7a time to tear apart and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak; 8a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace. 9What gain, then, does the laborer get with his toil? 10I have seen the task that God has given to the children of men to keep them occupied.

Yet Eternity In Their Heart

11He has made everything beautiful in its time. Moreover, He has set eternity in their heart—yet without the possibility that humankind can ever discover the work that God has done from the beginning to the end. 12I know that there is nothing better for them than to rejoice and enjoy themselves in their lifetime. 13Also when anyone eats and drinks, and finds satisfaction in all of his labor, it is the gift of God. 14I know that everything that God does will endure forever. There is no adding to it or taking from it. God has made it so, that they will revere Him. 15Whatever exists, has already been and whatever will be, has already been, but God recalls what has passed. 16I have also seen under the sun: In the place of justice there was wickedness, and in the place of righteousness there was wickedness. 17I said in my heart: “The righteous and the wicked, God will judge. For there is a time for every activity and for every deed.”

Humans Same As Beasts?

18I also said in my heart, “As for the sons of man, God tests them so that they may see that they are but animals.” 19For the destiny of humankind and the destiny of animals are one and the same. As one dies, so dies the other. Both have the same breath—a human has no advantage over an animal—both are fleeting. 20Both go to one place. Both were taken from the dust, and both return to the dust. 21Who knows that the spirit of the sons of man ascends upward and the animal’s spirit descends into the earth? 22So I perceived that nothing is better than for man to enjoy his works, because that is his portion. For who can bring him back to see what will be in the future?

–from Ecclesiastes 3

We need to give it all up to God! The good and the tough times! We need to realize that if God isn’t in it, we are working in vain! We need to realize that since everything is God’s we need to be good stewards of what He has given us and need His help to get it done! Without having God in the plans, the plans are futile! Trying to do it alone was never part of God’s plan which is why we learn about one another as well as having a relationship with Jesus! So let’s be good stewards! Let’s be good examples in our words and our actions so that others will see us and glorify God! It’s not all about us! It’s not about having to do it, it’s about the opportunity that we get to do it!

Futility of Human Labor

1Again I looked and saw all the oppressions that are done under the sun, and behold, I saw the tears of the oppressed, but they have no comforter. Power is in the hand of their oppressors, but they had no comforter. 2So I considered the dead, who are already dead, more fortunate than the living, who are still alive. 3Yet better than both is one who has not yet been, who has never seen the evil work that is done under the sun. 4Then I saw that all toil and all skill that is done come from man’s envy of his neighbor; this too is fleeting and striving after the wind. 5The fool folds his hands together and eats his own flesh. 6Better is a handful with tranquility than two handfuls of toil and striving after the wind. 7Again I saw something futile under the sun: 8There is one who has no one else, neither son nor brother, yet there is no end to all his toil. His eyes are not content with riches. “So, for whom am I toiling, and depriving myself of prosperity?” This too is meaningless— a grievous task!

Two Are Better Than One

9Two are better than one, because they get a good return for their effort. 10For if they fall, the one will lift up his companion. But oy to the one who falls and has no one to lift him up! 11Furthermore, if two lie together, then they will be warm. But how can one keep warm alone? 12Though a man might overpower one, two can stand against him. Moreover a threefold cord cannot be quickly broken. 13Better is a poor but wise youth than an old and foolish king who no longer knows how to take warning. 14For he came out of prison to become king—though he was born poor in his kingdom. 15I considered all the living that walk under the sun as well as the next youth who stands in his place. 16There is no end to all the people—to all who were before him. Also those who will come later will not rejoice in him. Surely this too is meaningless and striving after the wind.

Watch Your Words Before God

17Watch your feet when you go to the House of God. Draw near to listen, rather than to offer the sacrifice of fools, for they do not know that they are doing wrong.

–from Ecclesiastes 4

Let’s learn God’s Word so that we can be living it in front of the world we live in! Let’s learn God’s Word so that our words and our actions are speaking in spirit and in truth! Let’s learn God’s Word so that we always have the one offensive weapon ready if the devil shows up in a situation! Let’s learn God’s Word so that by having the full armor of God on we will be able to stand firm and withstand the attacks not only on us but those around us who God has brought into our lives and we can be peacemakers, encouragers, hope makers, love builders in Jesus’ name! We’ve been given the opportunity, the privilege and the honor to get to go out as ambassadors, so let’s live up to the calling God has put into and onto our lives!

1Everyone who believes that Yeshua is the Messiah is born of God, and everyone who loves the Father loves the one born of Him.

Love God—Live God’s Word

2We know that we love God’s children by this—when we love God and obey His commandments. 3For this is the love of God—that we keep His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome. 4For everyone born of God overcomes the world. And the victory that has overcome the world is this—our faith. 5Who is it that overcomes the world, if not the one who believes that Yeshua is Ben-Elohim?

Believe God’s Own Testimony of Yeshua

6Messiah Yeshua is the One who came by water and blood—not by water only, but by water and blood. The Spirit is the One who testifies, because the Spirit is the truth. 7For there are three that testify— 8the Spirit, the water, and the blood—and these three are one. 9If we accept men’s testimony, God’s testimony is greater—for this it is the testimony that God has given about His Son. 10The one who trusts in Ben-Elohim has the testimony in himself; the one who does not trust in God has made Him a liar, because he has not believed in the testimony that God has given about His Son. 11And the testimony is this—that God gave us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. 12The one who has the Son has life; the one who does not have Ben-Elohim does not have life.

Walk Now in Eternal Privileges

13I wrote these things to you who believe in the name of Ben-Elohim, so you may know that you have eternal life. 14Now this is the confidence we have before Him—that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. 15And if we know that He hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have the requests we have asked from Him. 16If anyone sees his brother committing a sin not leading to death, he should ask, and God will give life to those who commit sin not leading to death. There is a sin leading to death—I am not saying you should ask about that. 17All unrighteousness is sin, but there is sin not leading to death. 18We know that anyone born of God does not keep on sinning; rather, the One born of God keeps him safe, and the evil one cannot touch him. 19We know that we are of God, and the whole world lies in the power of the evil one. 20And we know that Ben-Elohim has come and given us insight, so that we may know Him who is true—and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Yeshua the Messiah. This One is the true God and eternal life. 21Children, guard yourselves from idols.

–from 1 John 5

Are you helping those closest to you? Your family? Your friends? Your inner circle?

Do they get it? Do they know what to expect? Do they know how to respond? Do they realize that they get to too?

Back to Teaching His Own

1Then Yeshua said to His disciples, “Stumbling blocks are bound to come, but woe to the one by whom they come! 2It would be better for him to have a millstone put around his neck and to be hurled into the sea, than for him to cause one of these little ones to stumble. 3“Keep yourselves alert! If your brother sins, rebuke him; and if he repents, forgive him. 4Even if he sins against you seven times a day, and seven times returns to you, saying, ‘I repent,’ you shall forgive him.” 5Then the emissaries said to the Lord, “Increase our faith!” 6Then the Lord said, “If you have faith like a mustard seed, you could say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it would obey you. 7But if you have a slave who is plowing or tending sheep, who among you will say to him when he comes in from the field, ‘Come right in, and recline at table’? 8But won’t he instead say to him, ‘Prepare something for me to eat! Dress yourself and wait on me while I eat and drink; and afterward, you may eat and drink’? 9He doesn’t thank the slave because he did what he was commanded, does he? 10So you too, when you’ve done everything you are commanded, say, ‘We are unworthy slaves. We have done only what we were supposed to do.’”

On the Move through Samaria

11Now while going up to Jerusalem, Yeshua was passing between Samaria and the Galilee. 12As He entered a certain village, ten men with tza’arat came toward Him. They stood some distance away 13and raised their voices, saying, “Yeshua, Master, have mercy on us!” 14When He saw them, He said to them, “Go and show yourselves to the kohanim.” And as they went, they were cleansed. 15Now one of them, when he saw that he was healed, came back, glorifying God with a loud voice. 16And he fell at Yeshua’s feet, facedown, giving Him thanks. And he was a Samaritan. 17Then Yeshua answered and said, “Weren’t ten cleansed? But where are the nine? 18Weren’t any found who came back to give glory to God except this foreigner?” 19Then Yeshua said to the man, “Stand up and go! Your faith has made you well.” 20Now when Yeshua was asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, He answered them and said, “The kingdom of God does not come with signs to be seen. 21Nor will they say, ‘Look, here!’ or ‘There!’ For behold, the kingdom of God is in your midst.” 22Then Yeshua said to the disciples, “The days will come when you will long to see one of the days of the Son of Man, and you will not see it. 23They will say to you, ‘Look, there!’ or ‘Look, here!’ Do not go and chase after them. 24For just as the lightning flashes from one part of the sky and lights up another part, so will the Son of Man be in His day. 25But first He must suffer much and be rejected by this generation. 26As it was in the days of Noah, so will it also be in the days of the Son of Man. 27They were eating, drinking, marrying, and being given in marriage, until the day Noah entered the ark. Then the flood came and destroyed them all. 28“It was just the same in the days of Lot. They were eating, drinking, buying, selling, planting, building. 29But on the day Lot left Sodom, it rained fire and sulfur from heaven and destroyed them all. 30Things will be the same on the day when the Son of Man is made fully known. 31In that day, the one who is on the roof, and his possessions in the house, must not go down to take them away. In the same way, the one who is in the field must not turn back. 32Remember Lot’s wife! 33Whoever tries to keep his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life will preserve it. 34“I tell you, on that night there will be two in one bed. One will be taken along and the other left. 35There will be two women grinding at the same place. One will be taken and the other left.” 36 37“Where, Lord?” they replied. And He said to them, “Where there is a corpse, there also will the vultures be gathered.”

–from Luke 17

 

What you need!


Do you know what you need? Do you know where to go to get it? Do you know where to turn to find it? Do you realize the benefits? Do you realize the purpose? Do you realize how much you need it?

Confidence, Discernment, Integrity

1The wicked flee when no one is pursuing, but the righteous are as bold as a lion.
2When a country is in rebellion, it has many rulers, but a man of discernment and knowledge maintains order.
3A poor man who oppresses the weak is like pounding rain without food.
4Those who forsake Torah praise the wicked, but those who keep Torah stir them up.
5Evil men do not understand justice, but those who seek Adonai understand it fully.
6Better the poor who walks in his integrity than the rich whose ways are crooked.
7He who keeps Torah is a discerning son, but a companion of gluttons disgraces his father.
8Whoever increases his wealth by exorbitant interest, gathers it for one kinder to the poor.
9One who turns his ear from hearing Torah —even his prayer is an abomination.
10One who leads the upright astray along an evil path will fall into his own pit, but the blameless will inherit good.
11A rich person is wise in his own eyes, but a discerning poor person sees through him.
12When the righteous triumph there is great glory, but when the wicked rise to power, people hide.
13One who covers up his transgressions will not prosper, but whoever confesses and forsakes them finds mercy.
14Blessed is one who is always cautious, but whoever hardens his heart will fall into trouble.
15Like a roaring lion or a prowling bear is a wicked ruler over helpless people.
16An oppressive leader lacks judgment. One who hates unjust gain will prolong his life.
17A man tormented by the guilt of murder flees to the Pit—let no one support him.
18Whoever walks blamelessly will be safe, but whoever is perverse in his ways will fall suddenly.

Wisdom About Finances

19Whoever works his land will be satisfied with food, but whoever chases fantasies will have his fill of poverty.
20A faithful man will have many blessings, but one eager to get rich will not go unpunished.
21To show partiality is not good— yet for a piece of bread a man may do wrong.
22A stingy man chases after riches, but does not know that poverty will overtake him.
23One who rebukes a man will in the end find more favor than one with a flattering tongue.
24Whoever robs his father or his mother, and says, “It’s not a crime,” is a partner to him who destroys.
25A greedy soul stirs up strife, but one who trusts in Adonai prospers.
26Whoever trusts in his own heart is a fool, but he who walks in wisdom will escape.
27One who gives to the poor will not lack, but one who shuts his eyes will have many curses.
28When the wicked rise to power, people hide, but when they perish, the righteous increase.

–from Proverbs 28

Do you have the confidence you need to make it through today? Do you have the discernment to be able to make that decision today? Will you stand up straight with integrity? Will you turn to God and ask Him for what you have need of? Will you allow Him to provide you the wisdom for today? for every moment? in every situation?

Will you receive the feedback? Will you receive the instruction? Will you receive the direction? Will you do something with that wisdom you have received?

1One who remains stiff-necked after many rebukes will suddenly be destroyed— without remedy.
2When the righteous thrive, people rejoice. When the wicked rule, people groan.
3Whoever loves wisdom brings joy to his father, but a companion of prostitutes squanders his wealth.
4By justice a king brings stability to a land, but one who takes bribes brings it ruin.
5A man who flatters his neighbor spreads a net for his feet.
6In an evil man’s wrongdoing is a trap, but the righteous sings and rejoices.
7A righteous person considers justice for the poor. The wicked one has no such concern.
8Mockers incite a city, but wise men turn away anger.
9If a wise man argues with a foolish man, he rants or laughs, with no resolution.
10Bloodthirsty people hate a man of integrity and seek the soul of the upright.
11A fool gives full vent to his temper, but a wise man holds it back.
12If a ruler listens to lies, all his servants will be wicked.
13The poor man and the oppressor have this in common: Adonai gives light to the eyes of both.
14If a king judges the poor with truth, his throne will always be secure.
15A rod and reproof give wisdom, but a child left to himself disgraces his mother.
16When the wicked thrive, wrongdoing increases, but the righteous will see their downfall.
17Correct your son and he will give you rest. He will bring delight to your soul.
18Where there is no divine vision people cast off restraint, but blessed is the one who keeps Torah.
19A servant cannot be corrected by words, for though he understands, he will not respond.
20Do you see someone hasty in his words? There is more hope for a fool than him.
21If someone pampers his slave from childhood in the end he will be ungrateful.
22An angry man stirs up dissention, and a hotheaded one commits many transgressions.
23A man’s pride will bring him low, but a humble spirit will gain honor.
24An accomplice of a thief is his own enemy. He hears the oath but says nothing.
25Fear of man will prove to be a snare, but one who trusts in Adonai will be kept safe.
26Many seek an audience with a ruler, but from Adonai one receives justice.
27The righteous detest the unjust, and the wicked detest the upright.

–from Proverbs 29

Want a guide till the end? What will you do? Will you invite God into your life? Will you invite Jesus into your heart? Will you believe in Him? Will you trust in Him?

Consider Zion’s Towers

1A song, a psalm of the sons of Korah. 2Great is Adonai, and greatly to be praised in the city of our God —His holy mountain. 3A beautiful height —the joy of the whole earth— is Mount Zion, on the northern side of the city of the great King. 4God, in her palaces, is known as a stronghold. 5For behold, the kings assembled, they advanced together. 6They saw, then they were astounded, they fled in terror. 7Trembling seized them there, pain like a woman in labor. 8With an east wind You broke the ships of Tarshish. 9As we have heard, so have we seen, in the city of Adonai-Tzva’ot, in the city of our God. God will establish her forever. Selah 10We have meditated on Your lovingkindness, O God, in the midst of Your Temple. 11Like Your Name, O God, so is Your praise to the ends of the earth. Your right hand is full of righteousness. 12Mount Zion is glad, the daughters of Judah rejoice, because of Your judgments. 13Walk about Zion, go around her. Count her towers. 14Consider her ramparts, go through her palaces, so you may describe it to the next generation. 15For this God is our God, forever and ever! He will guide us to the end.

–from Psalms 48

He will never leave you! He will never abandon you! So are you willing to receive the gift of grace? Are you willing to receive the gift of love? Are you willing to receive the gift of hope? Are you willing to ask for what you have need of from the one who is more than able to answer? Will you do it before it is too late? Will you ask Him in before He returns? What is it going to take? I know God’s plan is that nobody would perish, however, we need to make the choice for ourselves! So how do you want to spend eternity? With God or apart from God?

The Day of the Lord Is Coming

1Loved ones, this is now the second letter that I am writing to you. In both I am trying to stir you up by way of a reminder to wholesome thinking— 2to remember the words previously proclaimed by the holy prophets and the commandment of our Lord and Savior through your emissaries. 3First of all, understand that in the last days, scoffers will come scoffing, following after their own desires 4and saying, “Where is this promise of His coming? Ever since the fathers died, everything goes on just as it has from the beginning of creation.” 5For in holding to this idea, it escapes their notice that the heavens existed long ago and the earth was formed out of water and through water by the word of God. 6Through these, the world of that time was destroyed by being flooded with water. 7But by the same word the present heavens and earth are being reserved for fire—kept until the Day of Judgment and the destruction of ungodly people. 8But don’t forget this one thing, loved ones, that with the Lord one day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like one day. 9The Lord is not slow in keeping His promise, as some consider slowness. Rather, He is being patient toward you—not wanting anyone to perish, but for all to come to repentance. 10But the day of the Lord will come like a thief. On that day the heavens will pass away with a roar, and the elements will melt and disintegrate, and the earth and everything done on it shall be exposed. 11Since all these things are to be destroyed in this way, what kind of people should you be? Live your lives in holiness and godliness, 12looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God. In that day the heavens will be dissolved by fire, and the elements will melt in the intense heat. 13But in keeping with His promise, we look for new heavens and a new earth, where righteousness dwells.

Final Advice

14Therefore, loved ones, while you are looking for these things, make every effort to be found in shalom, spotless and blameless before Him. 15Bear in mind that the patience of our Lord means salvation—just as our dearly loved brother Paul also wrote to you with the wisdom given to him. 16He speaks about these matters in all of his letters. Some things in them are hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable twist (as they also do with the rest of the Scriptures)—to their own destruction. 17Since you already know all this, loved ones, be on your guard so that you are not led astray by the error of the lawless and lose your sure footing. 18Instead, keep growing in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Yeshua the Messiah. To Him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity! Amen.

–from 2 Peter 3