Category Archives: Decide

Merry Christmas Everyone…


The Book of Job. – Day 43

As this day begins I consider back over 2000 years to the time when the gift of hope, peace, and love were given by God to a world in need, a gift to last for all of eternity, a gift that would provide a message from angels to shepherds of joy, a gift that would provide us with hope beyond our circumstances, a gift that would bring us peace that surpasses all understanding, and a gift of love, so great a love that God sent His one and only Son that whosoever believes in Him would not perish but have everlasting life!

No matter where you are at, God loves you. No matter what you have done, God loves you. No matter who you are, God loves you. No matter when you decide to accept the gift of God, God loves you. No matter why you did, God loves you. No matter how you came to the realization and reality, God loves you. He created you on purpose, with purpose, for a purpose. He created you with a freewill so that without force and without coercion, you can decide if you will choose to receive the gift of eternal life through Jesus Christ. When you consider the laws of the land, it is interesting to see how many point back to God’s will and plans. God created us in His own image! God has given us freewill to choose what we will do with our lives, how will we live our lives, and where we will spend eternity when our time on earth is complete.

So today on this time when the world celebrates Christmas, will you make the decision freely to choose to receive the gift of eternal life with God by receiving Jesus as your Lord and Savior? Are you ready to hear what God has to say about where you are at today? Are you ready to ask Him to help you understand? Are you ready to wait on Him no matter what your so called friends have to say? Are you ready to trust Him even when it is beyond your own understanding and acknowledge Him?

Will you listen for the still quiet voice? Will you shrug it off till you need to hear the big booming voice? What would or will it take for God to get your attention? Do you hear what I hear? Do you see what I see? Do you know what I know? Will you allow God to be God and live out your life with purpose, on purpose, and for His purpose? Will you trust Him enough to not worry or doubt or fear what is taking place through man made actions, behaviors, plans, and behaviors? Will you trust God even when you don’t understand what is taking place around you?


Today’s reading from God’s Word: Job 38

‘Then the L ord answered Job out of the whirlwind and said, “Who is this that darkens counsel [questioning my authority and wisdom] By words without knowledge? Now gird up your loins like a man, And I will ask you, and you instruct Me! Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth? Tell Me, if you know and have understanding. Who determined the measurements [of the earth], if you know? Or who stretched the [measuring] line on it? On what were its foundations fastened? Or who laid its cornerstone, When the morning stars sang together And all the sons of God (angels) shouted for joy? “Or who enclosed the sea with doors When it burst forth and went out of the womb; When I made the clouds its garment And thick darkness its swaddling band, And marked for it My [appointed] boundary And set bars and doors [defining the shorelines], And said, ‘This far you shall come, but no farther; And here your proud waves shall stop’?

“ Since your days began, have you ever commanded the morning, And caused the dawn to know its place, So that light may take hold of the corners of the earth And shake the wickedness out of it? The earth is changed like clay into which a seal is pressed; And the things [of the earth] stand out like a [multi-colored] garment. Their light is withheld from the wicked, And the uplifted arm is broken. “Have you entered and explored the springs of the sea Or [have you] walked in the recesses of the deep? Have the gates of death been revealed to you, Or have you seen the gates of deep darkness? Have you understood the expanse of the earth? Tell Me, if you know all this. “Where is the way where light dwells? And as for darkness, where is its place, That you may take it to its territory And that you may know the paths to its house? You [must] know, since you were born then, And because you are so extremely old! Have you entered the storehouses of the snow, Or have you seen the storehouses of the hail, Which I have reserved for the time of trouble, For the day of battle and war? Where is the way that the light is distributed, Or the east wind scattered over the earth? “Who has prepared a channel for the torrents of rain and for the flood, Or a path for the thunderbolt, To bring rain on the uninhabited land, And on the desert where no man lives, To satisfy the barren and desolate ground And to make the seeds of grass to sprout? Has the rain a father? Or who has begotten the drops of dew? Out of whose womb has come the ice? And the frost of heaven, who has given it birth? Water becomes like stone [and hides itself], And the surface of the deep is frozen and imprisoned. “Can you bind the chains of [the cluster of stars called] Pleiades, Or loose the cords of [the constellation] Orion? Can you lead forth a constellation in its season, And guide [the stars of] the Bear with her sons? Do you know the ordinances of the heavens, Or [can you] establish their rule over the earth? “Can you lift up your voice to the clouds, So that an abundance of water will cover you? Can you send forth lightnings that they may go And say to you, ‘Here we are’? Who has put wisdom in the innermost being [of man, or in the layers of clouds] Or given understanding to the mind [of man, or to the heavenly display]? Who can count the clouds by [earthly] wisdom, Or pour out the water jars of the heavens, When the dust hardens into a mass And the clods stick together [because of the heat]? “Can you [Job] hunt the prey for the lion, Or satisfy the appetite of the young lions When they crouch in their dens And lie in wait in their lair? Who provides prey for the raven When its young cry to God And wander about without food?’

— Job 38:1-41

Today’s study includes information from:


Study Notes:

Today’s summary from the study notes: Job Chapter 38 Explained (visit the links above to dig in deeper verse by verse):

Verses 38:1 – 40:2: Job had called on many occasions for God to appear. Finally, He does appear in a whirlwind, but not with the answers Job desired. Rather, God comes with questions. There are a total of 39 questions (in chapter 38), which easily ranks it as the chapter with the most questions in all the Bible. When added to the 20 questions (in 39:1 – 40:2), the total comes to 59 questions that God asked Job in the first cycle of interrogation. The second cycle (40:6 – 41:34), contains another 24 questions. The significant thing about these questions is that Job cannot answer a single one! God was driving home the point that Job must let God be God, the sovereign and omnipotent Creator who answers to no one.

Jobs complaints that he had no mediator between himself and God are met in Yahweh’s first speech as the Lord counters with the truth of Job’s comparable insignificance. The glory of the story is that God Himself did prepare the very Mediator that Job requested, in the Incarnation of the Lord Jesus Christ (see notes on 9:32-35).

God appeared and engaged in His first interrogation of Job, who had raised some accusations against Him. God had His day in court with Job.

(In verses 1-3), Job received his audience with God, and now he would be subject to divine cross-examination. The tempest he feared (in 9:17), had appeared, but rather than an object of judgment, it was God answering Job’s questions “out of the whirlwind”, just as He spoke to Moses (Exodus 19:16-17). Likewise, Ezekiel saw the glory of God in the storm (Ezek. Chapters 1-2).

Verses 38:4-38: The questions cover a wide range of the marvels of God’s creation, with the emphasis placed on the inanimate world: earth (verses 4-7), sea (verses 8-11), the dawn (“dayspring” verses 12-15), unseen wonders (verses 16-21), weather phenomena (verses 22-30), and heavenly bodies (verses 31-38). God asked Job if he participated in creation as He did. That was a crushing, humbling query with an obvious “no” answer.

Verses 4-11: God challenged Job’s wisdom immediately with an inquiry about Job’s lack of omnipotence and omnipresence. (Proverbs 3:19-20 and 8:22-31), reveal the connection between God’s wisdom and creation.

In verses 4-7: Creation is spoken of using the language of building construction.

Verses 8-11: God’s power over the sea by raising the continents is described, along with the thick clouds that draw up its water to carry rain to the land.

Verses 8-9: God constrains and clothes even the most powerful forces of “the sea”, far beyond anything a mere mortal can do

Verses 12-41: The steady flow of questions has obvious answers, exposing Job’s folly in presuming he could set God straight. The Creator-creature distinction is undisputable.

In verses 12-13 the dawn rises, and as it spreads light over the earth, it exposes the wicked, like shaking the corners of a cloth exposes dirt.

Verses 22-30: The earlier logic of Job and his friends suggested that weather occurs in direct relationship to good or evil actions. God exposed the flawed thinking of the retribution principle by asking about “rain” in places that are uninhabited.

Verses 31-32: Pleiades … Orion … Arcturus”: Stellar constellations (compare Job 9:9), are in view.

Verses 32-33: “Or canst thou guide Arcturus with his sons?” Referring to the constellation Ursa Major. God questioned Job’s knowledge of the operations of the heavens, further exposing Job’s inability to speak to how the world operates.

Verses 38:39 – 39:30: God asked Job the humiliating questions about whether he could take care of the animal kingdom. Job must have been feeling less and less significant under the crushing indictment of such comparisons with God.

The next series of questions emphasizes the marvels of the animal world: the “lion” (38:39-40), the “raven” (38:41 – 39:4), the wild donkey (39:5-8), the “unicorn,” or better, the wild ox (39:9-12), the “peacock” (the stork), and the “ostrich” (39:13-18), the “horse” (39:19-25), the “hawk” (39:26), and the “eagle” (39:27-30).

God switches His discourse from His control of the cosmos to His provision for even the wild animals (Matt. 6:26).

Job Chapter 38 Explained

So where are you at today? How will you respond to the offer from God of grace, mercy, and salvation? Are you ready to lean into all that God has for you? Are you ready to persevere and trust and have your faith built up? 

My hope and prayer is that You will ask Jesus into your heart so that I will get to spend eternity in God’s presence with you.  Are you ready for forgiveness and peace?

Are you ready for a hope and a future? Are you ready for a transformation where the old is gone and the new has come? Are you ready to being the journey of knowing right from wrong? Then let’s pray together to invite Jesus into your heart and your life so that His peace which surpasses all understanding can guide you and comfort you, protect your heart and mind in Christ Jesus. If this is the first time you have prayed to invite Jesus into your heart, leave me a comment so that I can rejoice with the angels in Heaven. If this is a re-commitment to Jesus, leave me a comment so that I can rejoice with the angels in Heaven. If you are still questioning or seeking, don’t go it alone, feel free to leave me a comment so we can discuss it.

Reply with a comment to let me know of your decision so that I can pray with you. Respond to God’s prompting on your heart.

Take time to hear from God today. Take time to be with God today. Take time to respond to God today!

Let’s pray:

^^^^^^^^^^^Will you be willing to put your name there today

How will you choose to live in the midst of the unknown? Will you find rest in the Lord and renew your strength?


The book of Job. – Day 42

T’was the morning of Christmas Eve and all through the house, not a creature was stirring not even a mouse. The stockings are hung by the chimney with care. The new tree is up and decorated for the celebration of Jesus’s birth with the tradition of the wise men, giving gifts. The workdays are done till the new year and now is the time to reflect, refresh, and renew for what is yet to come. Change had begun but just over a month back with some structural changes but mostly operating models being defined at very high levels which leaves ambiguity and lots of questions on what it all means to me. In the midst of all of that I an leaning on and trusting God who isn’t only all knowing but is in control. I am trusting that just as He used the census to move Joseph and Mary to the place they needed to be in order for Jesus to be born in Bethlehem, that God has set these changes in motion in order to move me to where I need to be to accomplish His greater purpose for me. I am trusting in God that just as back in 2013 when I got to one of my favorite verses from Job in chapter 42 in verse 12 that was the day I started my new journey working with GoDaddy after 19 years and 1 day at Microsoft and have gotten to see incredible things. As God moved me out of the comfort zone of where I had been and known for so long into a new industry and new company in order to bring His joy and His presence to a new set of people in order that His light would be shone to the people around me in order that they would get to see and feel how the joy of the Lord is my strength, how His mercies are new every day, and how we can always choose to make today which is the present can be a Happy Today! Yesterday is gone! Tomorrow isn’t guaranteed! So let’s allow the gift, the present of today be a great one and have a Happy Today, wish people a Merry Christmas, and let your life shine for the glory of God! Let’s be the salt and light God created us to be so that we can make a difference for the glory of His Kingdom! Let’s do it all in the name of Jesus!

Let’s take hold of the truth of today! Every morning I have a reminder on my calendar that appears and reminds me “Be Encouraged! God knows what you are going through!” If I open up the meeting invite (which I have shared with others over the years by inviting them to “meeting”) we can all read the following: (if you would like to be on the invite, leave me a comment)

Be encouraged! God knows what you’re going through.
Here are some good daily reminders:

  1. Wake Up! Decide to have a good day. “Today is the day the Lord hath made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.” Psalms 118:24
  2. Dress Up! The best way to dress up is to put on a smile. A smile is an inexpensive way to improve your looks. “The Lord does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at outward appearance; but the Lord looks at the heart.” I Samuel 16:7
  3. Shut Up! Say nice things and learn to listen. God gave us two ears and one mouth, so He must have meant for us to do twice as much listening as talking. “He who guards his lips guards his soul.” Proverbs
    13:3
  4. Stand Up!… For what you believe in. Stand for something or you will fall for anything.. “Let us not be weary in doing good; for at the proper time, we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good…” Galatians 6:9-10
  5. Look Up!… To the Lord. “I can do everything through Christ who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:13
  6. Reach Up!… For something higher. “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not unto your own understanding. In all your ways, acknowledge Him, And He will direct your path.” Proverbs 3:5-6
  7. Lift Up!… Your Prayers. “Do not worry about anything; instead PRAY ABOUT EVERYTHING.” Philippians 4:6

Today’s reading from God’s Word: Job 37

‘“Indeed, at His thundering my heart trembles And leaps out of its place. Listen carefully to the thunder of His voice, And the rumbling that goes out of His mouth! He lets it loose under the whole heaven, And His lightning to the ends of the earth. After it, His voice roars; He thunders with the voice of His majesty, And He does not restrain His lightning [against His adversaries] when His voice is heard. God thunders marvelously with His voice; He does great things which we cannot comprehend. For He says to the snow, ‘Fall on the earth’; And [He speaks] to the showers and to the downpour [of His mighty rains], ‘Be strong.’ God seals (brings to a standstill, stops) [by severe weather] the hand of every man, That all men [whom He has made] may know His work [that is, His sovereign power and their subjection to it]. Then the beast goes into its lair And remains in its hiding place. Out of its chamber comes the storm, And cold from the north wind. Ice is made by the breath of God, And the expanse of the waters is frozen. He loads the thick cloud with moisture; He disperses the cloud of His lightning. Its direction is turned around by His guidance, That it may do whatever He commands it On the face of the inhabited earth. Whether [it be] for correction, or for His earth [generally] Or for [His] mercy and lovingkindness, He causes it to happen. “Listen to this, Job; Stand still and consider the wonders of God. Do you know how God establishes and commands them, And makes the lightning of His [storm] cloud shine? Do you know about the layers of thick clouds [and how they are balanced and poised in the heavens], The wonderful works of Him who is perfect in knowledge, You whose garments are hot, When He quiets the earth [in sultry summer] with the [oppressive] south wind? Can you, with Him, spread out the sky, Strong as a molten mirror? Tell us [Job] what words [of man] shall we say to such a Being; We cannot state our case because of darkness [that is, our ignorance in the presence of the unsearchable God]. So shall it be told Him that I wish to speak? Or should a man say that he would be swallowed up [and destroyed by God]? “Now people cannot look at the light when it is bright in the skies [without being blinded], When the wind has passed and cleared them. Out of the north comes golden splendor [and people can hardly look on it]; Around God is awesome splendor and majesty [far too glorious for man’s eyes]. The Almighty—we cannot find Him; He is exalted in power And He will not do violence to [nor disregard] justice and abundant righteousness. Men therefore fear Him; He does not regard nor respect any who are wise in heart [in their own understanding and conceit].”’

Job 37:1-24

Today’s study includes information from:


Study Notes:

Today’s summary from the study notes: Job Chapter 37 Explained (visit the links above to dig in deeper verse by verse):

Verses 2-13: Elihu reemphasized his main point: God uses the storms to show favor or wrath.

Verses 5-13: He described God’s power expressed in the cold winter. The storms and the hard winters remind us of the world in which harsh things occur, but for God’s good purposes of either “correction” or “lovingkindness” (37:13).

Verses 14-18: These words picture the scene in the sky when the storms and winters have passed, the sunlight breaks through, the warm wind blows and the sky clears.

Verses 19-20: What would Job do if he got his wish for an audience with God? Elihu had little expectation that this would ever happen.

In this passage Elihu reminded Job that since man can’t explain the wonders of God’s power and purpose, he ought to be silent and not contend with God. What a man has to say against God’s plans is not worthy to utter and could bring judgment.

Verses 21-23; Elihu illustrated the folly of telling God what to do by describing staring into the golden sun on a brilliant day (verses 21-22). We can’t confront God in His great glory; we are not even able to look at the sun He created (verse 21).

Job Chapter 37 Explained

So where are you at today? How will you respond to the offer from God of grace, mercy, and salvation? Are you ready to lean into all that God has for you? Are you ready to persevere and trust and have your faith built up? 

My hope and prayer is that You will ask Jesus into your heart so that I will get to spend eternity in God’s presence with you.  Are you ready for forgiveness and peace?

Are you ready for a hope and a future? Are you ready for a transformation where the old is gone and the new has come? Are you ready to being the journey of knowing right from wrong? Then let’s pray together to invite Jesus into your heart and your life so that His peace which surpasses all understanding can guide you and comfort you, protect your heart and mind in Christ Jesus. If this is the first time you have prayed to invite Jesus into your heart, leave me a comment so that I can rejoice with the angels in Heaven. If this is a re-commitment to Jesus, leave me a comment so that I can rejoice with the angels in Heaven. If you are still questioning or seeking, don’t go it alone, feel free to leave me a comment so we can discuss it.

Reply with a comment to let me know of your decision so that I can pray with you. Respond to God’s prompting on your heart.

Take time to hear from God today. Take time to be with God today. Take time to respond to God today!

Let’s pray:

^^^^^^^^^^^Will you be willing to put your name there today

When you get to the end of your rope, are you willing to tie a not and start looking up? If God says let go or cut the rope, will you trust Him enough to let go or cut the rope?


The Story of Job. – Day 41

Will you trust God more than you trust the rope?

Things are quiet. Things are unclear. Things are deferred. Things are delayed. Things are yet to be decided. The details available don’t help.

Going in for one last day. Going in with one last effort. Going in with time to put together ideas so we can start strong upon everyone’s return. Where will your help come from?

A day without the distraction of other voices. A day with focus on hearing a single voice. A day set apart for God’s purposes and plan. A day to close out strong.

How attached are you to your rope? Do you trust the rope more than you trust God? Are you willing to let go or give up on the rope and do what God needs you to do? What is your rope? Who or what will you trust most? Are you holding the rope is it that the rope has a hold of you? Is it a strong rope to help or is it a rope of affliction that is holding you back from all that God has planned for you?

Whose words are speaking truth into your very situation? Consider the voices! Consider the intentions! Consider the reasons! Consider the purposes! Is it to serve or for self? Is it to support or to entangle? Is it to help or to restrain? With but a week to go, do you know? Will you wait upon God and hear what He has to say about the rope? Will you be obedient no matter what He says to do with the rope? Do you trust God enough that even in the midst of being uncomfortable or having to go somewhere or go through something because of what others say or command that God’s still in control and is using them to get you in position for what He has planned in advance just like how He used Caesar Augustus’s census to get Mary and Joseph to Bethlehem where He had gotten prophets hundreds of years earlier to prophesy Jesus would be born?


There is a story of a mountain climber I remember and when I looked for it I found multiple but this one seemed like the one I should include in today’s post:

They tell the story of a mountain climber who, desperate to conquer the Aconcagua, initiated his climb after years of preparation. But he wanted the glory to himself, therefore, he went up alone. He started climbing and it was becoming later, and later. He did not prepare for camping, but decided to keep on going.

Soon it got dark. Night fell with heaviness at a very high altitude. Visibility was zero. Everything was black. There was no moon, and the stars were covered by clouds.

As he was climbing a ridge at about 100 meters from the top, he slipped and fell. Falling rapidly he could only see blotches of darkness that passed. He felt a terrible sensation of being sucked in by gravity. He kept falling… and in those anguishing moments good and bad memories passed through his mind. He thought certainly he would die.

But then he felt a jolt that almost tore him in half. Yes! Like any good mountain climber he had staked himself with a long rope tied to his waist. In those moments of stillness, suspended in the air he had no other choice but to shout: “HELP ME GOD. HELP ME!”

All of a sudden he heard a deep voice from heaven… “What do you want me to do?”

“SAVE ME.”

“Do you REALLY think that I can save you?”

“OF COURSE, MY GOD.”

“Then cut the rope that is holding you up.”

There was another moment of silence and stillness. The man just held tighter to the rope. The rescue team says that the next day they found a frozen mountain climber hanging strongly to a rope… TWO FEET OFF THE GROUND.

— Author Unknown

Today’s reading from God’s Word comes from Job 36:

‘Elihu continued and said, “Bear with me a little longer, and I will show you, That there is yet more to say on God’s behalf. I will bring my knowledge from afar, And will ascribe righteousness to my Maker. For truly my words are not false; He who is perfect in knowledge is with you. Behold, God is mighty, and yet does not despise anyone [nor regard any as trivial]; He is mighty in the strength and power of understanding. He does not prolong the life of the wicked, But gives the afflicted their justice. He does not withdraw His eyes from the righteous [those in right standing with Him]; But with kings upon the throne He has seated them forever, and they are exalted. And if they are bound in bonds [of adversity], And held by cords of affliction, Then He declares to them [the true character of] their deeds And their transgressions, that they have acted arrogantly [with presumption and notions of self-sufficiency]. He opens their ears to instruction and discipline, And commands that they return from evil. If they hear and serve Him, They will end their days in prosperity And their years in pleasantness and joy. But if they do not hear and obey, they will die by the sword [of God’s destructive judgments] And they will die [in ignorance] without [true] knowledge. But the godless in heart store up anger [at the divine discipline]; They do not cry [to Him] for help when He binds them [with cords of affliction]. They die in youth, And their life ends among the cult prostitutes. He rescues the afflicted in their affliction, And opens their ears [so that they pay attention to His voice] in times of oppression. Then indeed, He enticed you from the mouth of distress and confinement, Into a broad place where there is no constraint or distress; And that which was set on your table was full of fatness (rich food). “But you [Job] were full of judgment on the wicked, Judgment and justice take hold of you . Do not let wrath entice you into scoffing; And do not let the greatness and the extent of the ransom turn you aside. Will your wealth [be sufficient to] keep you from [the confinement of] distress, Or will all the force of your strength do it? Do not long for the night, When people vanish from their places. Take heed and be careful, do not turn to wickedness, For you have chosen this [the vice of complaining against God] rather than [learning from] affliction. Behold, God is exalted in His power; Who is a ruler or a teacher like Him? Who has appointed God His way, And who can say [to Him], ‘You have done wrong’? “Remember that you should magnify God’s work, Of which men have sung. All men have seen God’s work; Man looks at it from a distance. Behold, God is exalted, and we do not know Him; The number of His years is unsearchable. For He draws up the drops of water, They distill rain from the mist, Which the clouds pour down, They drop abundantly upon mankind.” “Can anyone understand the spreading of the clouds Or the thundering of His pavilion? Behold, He spreads His lightning around Him [against the dark clouds], And He covers the depths of the sea. For by these [mighty acts] He judges the peoples; He gives food in abundance. He covers His hands with the lightning, And commands it to strike the mark. His thundering voice declares [awesomely] His presence; The cattle also are told of His coming storm.’

— Job 36:1-33

Today’s study includes information from:


Study Notes:

Today’s summary from the study notes: Job Chapter 36 Explained (visit the links above to dig in deeper verse by verse):

36:1 – 37:24: Elihu had agreed with his 3 co-counselors that Job had sinned, if nowhere else, in the way he questioned God (33:12), by seeing his suffering as indicating God is unjust (34:34-37), and by feeling that righteousness had no reward (chapter 35). In this final answer to Job, he turned to focus mostly on God rather than the sufferer (verse 2).

erses 1-25: Elihu continues by expounding the grace of God to men: He opposes wicked men (verses 5-6); exalts righteous men (verse 7); tries to bring sinners to repentance (verses 8-12), and delivers those who suffer unjustly (verse 15). Before such a God, Job must repent of his sins and praise the omnipotent God (verses 17-25).

Verses 2-4: The phrase “knowledge from afar” conveys Elihu’s mistaken assertion that his words were directly from God.

Verses 5-12: Elihu began by repeating the thought that though God sends trouble, He is just and merciful (verse 6); He watches over the righteous (verse 7); He convicts them of sin (verses 8-9); He teaches them to turn from it (verse 10), and rewards their obedience (verse 11), or punishes their rebellion (verses 12-14).

Verses 36:22 – 37:24: Instead of complaining and questioning God, as Job had been doing, which was sin (as Job will later confess in 42:6), he needed to see God in his suffering and worship Him. 33:24).

Verses 36:26 – 37:24: In a beautiful passage on the power and greatness of God, Elihu lists the marvels of nature as tokens of God’s might: raindrops (36:27-28), thunderstorms (36:29 – 37:5), snow (37:6-9), ice (37:10), and clouds (37:11-13). In light of these examples of God’s greatness, Job is admonished to listen (verse 14). Man is too limited in knowledge (verses 15-20), to speak to, approach, or understand such a God (verses 21-23). Therefore, man must fear God.

Verses 27-33¨Elihu’s description of the “vapor” is simply a declaration of who controls the weather, a typical question in the ancient Near East.

From 36:27 – 37:4 Elihu gave a picture of God’s power in the rain storm.

Job Chapter 36 Explained

So where are you at today? How will you respond to the offer from God of grace, mercy, and salvation? Are you ready to lean into all that God has for you? Are you ready to persevere and trust and have your faith built up? 

My hope and prayer is that You will ask Jesus into your heart so that I will get to spend eternity in God’s presence with you.  Are you ready for forgiveness and peace? Are you ready for a hope and a future? Are you ready for a transformation where the old is gone and the new has come? Are you ready to being the journey of knowing right from wrong? Then let’s pray together to invite Jesus into your heart and your life so that His peace which surpasses all understanding can guide you and comfort you, protect your heart and mind in Christ Jesus. If this is the first time you have prayed to invite Jesus into your heart, leave me a comment so that I can rejoice with the angels in Heaven. If this is a re-commitment to Jesus, leave me a comment so that I can rejoice with the angels in Heaven. If you are still questioning or seeking, don’t go it alone, feel free to leave me a comment so we can discuss it. Reply with a comment to let me know of your decision so that I can pray with you. Respond to God’s prompting on your heart. Take time to hear from God today. Take time to be with God today. Take time to respond to God today!

Let’s pray:

^^^^^^^^^^^Will you be willing to put your name there today

What will you do when you are faced with tough times or rough times or sad times?


The Story of Job. – Day 40

How do you get thru the tough times? You make the decision to pour into the lives of the ones you love! How do you get thru the rough times? You focus on the ones you love! How do you get thru the sad times? You spend it with the ones you love!

God’s ways are not our ways! God’s plan is good! God loves us! God works all thing for good for those who love Him! God has already won the victory!

So we can consider it pure joy when we face trials of many kinds! So we can take heart when we run into troubles! So don’t lose hope!


Today’s reading from God’s Word comes from Job 35:

‘Elihu continued speaking [to Job] and said, “Do you think this is according to [your] justice? Do you say, ‘My righteousness is more than God’s’? For you say, ‘What advantage have you [by living a righteous life]? What profit will I have, more [by being righteous] than if I had sinned?’ I will answer you, And your companions with you. Look to the heavens and see; And behold the skies which are [much] higher than you. If you have sinned, what do you accomplish against Him? And if your transgressions are multiplied, what have you done to Him? If you are righteous, what do you give God, Or what does He receive from your hand? Your wickedness affects only a man such as you, And your righteousness affects only a son of man [but it cannot affect God, who is sovereign]. “Because of the multitudes of oppressions the people cry out; They cry for help because of the [violent] arm of the mighty. But no one says, ‘Where is God my Maker, Who gives songs [of rejoicing] in the night, Who teaches us more than the beasts of the earth And makes us wiser than the birds of the heavens?’ The people cry out, but He does not answer Because of the pride of evil men. Surely God will not listen to an empty cry [which lacks trust], Nor will the Almighty regard it. Even though you say that you do not see Him [when missing His righteous judgment on earth], Yet your case is before Him, and you must wait for Him! And now, because He has not [quickly] punished in His anger, Nor has He acknowledged transgression and arrogance well [and seems unaware of the wrong of which a person is guilty], Job uselessly opens his mouth And multiplies words without knowledge [drawing the worthless conclusion that the righteous have no more advantage than the wicked].”’

— Job 35:1-16

Today’s study includes information from:


Study Notes:

Today’s summary from the study notes: Job Chapter 35 Explained (visit the links above to dig in deeper verse by verse):

Verses 1-16: Elihu again referred to Job’s complaints, first of all his thinking that there appeared to be no advantage to being righteous (verse 3), which Job had said, as recorded (in 21:15; and 34:9). The first part of his answer is that Job gained nothing by sinning or not sinning because God was so high that nothing men do affects Him (verses 5-7). It only affects other men (verse 8). Job had also complained that God did not answer his prayers when he cried under this oppression (see 24:12, 30:20). Elihu coldly gave 3 reasons why Job’s prayers had not been heard: pride (verses 10, 12), wrong motives (verse 13), and lack of patient trust (verse 14). Again, all this theoretical talk missed Job’s predicament completely because he was righteous. Elihu was no more help than the other counselors.

Verses 13-15: The emphasis here is on God’ transcendence in contrast to His nearness. Rather than humans asking for God’s response, Elihu argued that humans (and Job especially) needed to approach God with humility.

Verses 15-16: Elihu suggested that although Job had suffered, his suffering was not the fullness of God’s anger or He would have punished Job more for the sinfulness of his speeches. He thought God had actually overlooked the folly of Job in his useless words.

Job Chapter 35 Explained

So where are you at today? How will you respond to the offer from God of grace, mercy, and salvation? Are you ready to lean into all that God has for you? Are you ready to persevere and trust and have your faith built up?  My hope and prayer is that You will ask Jesus into your heart so that I will get to spend eternity in God’s presence with you.  Are you ready for forgiveness and peace? Are you ready for a hope and a future? Are you ready for a transformation where the old is gone and the new has come? Are you ready to being the journey of knowing right from wrong? Then let’s pray together to invite Jesus into your heart and your life so that His peace which surpasses all understanding can guide you and comfort you, protect your heart and mind in Christ Jesus. If this is the first time you have prayed to invite Jesus into your heart, leave me a comment so that I can rejoice with the angels in Heaven. If this is a re-commitment to Jesus, leave me a comment so that I can rejoice with the angels in Heaven. If you are still questioning or seeking, don’t go it alone, feel free to leave me a comment so we can discuss it. Reply with a comment to let me know of your decision so that I can pray with you. Respond to God’s prompting on your heart. Take time to hear from God today. Take time to be with God today. Take time to respond to God today!

Let’s pray:

^^^^^^^^^^^Will you be willing to put your name there today

Deciding isn't the end of the journey but the beginning!


The Book of Job. – Day 29

Decided. Now to step up and step into what that will mean. The reality is that the definition isn’t fully clear and yet I know where I will be. My expectations are that as we continue through our ready that by the end of it more the questions will get answered and more clarity will come. My peace in this comes through my trust in God! Jesus sent the Holy Spirit to be my comforter and my guide. God’s peace which surpasses all understanding guards my heart through this process. We may not know why but we do know that God works all things for good for those who love Him. We may not know when it will end but we do know that God’s timing is perfect! We may not know how, but we know that in the end God wins and that Jesus broke the devils power through the birth (why we celebrate Christmas), the sacrifice (why we celebrate Good Friday), and the resurrection and overcoming death (why we celebrate Easter) so that we not only will get to walk in that victory when we get to heaven but God has opened the door for us to walk in faith in that victory while we are still here on earth.

It is interesting what you can learn from what people don’t say. It is interesting what you can learn from what people do. It is interesting what you can learn from how people treat others. It is interesting what you can learn by being present. It is interesting what you can learn by listening. It is interesting to learn what is known and what is unknown and how with the favor of God people open up and share. It is interesting how there are times when we wonder why something goes on so long and then we can reflect on God’s Words that says love is long suffering, God’s will is that nobody would perish but that everyone would come to eternal life through Jesus Christ. In the old and new testaments we see God’s desire for the people to turn back to Him. It is interesting when you are present and people know that you care how they will turn to you in the midst of questions and concerns, issues and challenges, relationships and work. When you live out your life in love, being Jesus with skin on to the world around you, you will find some people are drawn to you and others want to reject you, just like what happened to Jesus.


Today’s reading comes to us from Job 24.

‘“Why does the Almighty not set seasons for judgment? Why do those who know Him not see His days [for punishment of the wicked]? Some remove the landmarks; They [violently] seize and pasture flocks [appropriating land and flocks openly]. They drive away the donkeys of the orphans; They take the widow’s ox for a pledge. They crowd the needy off the road; The poor of the land all hide themselves. Behold, as wild donkeys in the desert, The poor go to their work, diligently seeking food; As bread for their children in the desert. They harvest their fodder in a field [that is not their own], And glean the vineyard of the wicked. They spend the night naked, without clothing, And have no covering against the cold. They are wet from the rain of the mountains And cling to the rock for lack of shelter. Others snatch the fatherless [infants] from the breast [to sell or make them slaves], And against the poor they take a pledge [of clothing]. They cause the poor to go about naked without clothing, And they take away the sheaves [of grain] from the hungry. Within the walls [of the wicked] the poor make [olive] oil; They tread [the grapes in] the wine presses, but thirst. From the [populous and crowded] city men groan, And the souls of the wounded cry out for help; Yet God [seemingly] does not pay attention to the wrong [done to them]. “Others have been with those who rebel against the light; They do not want to know its ways Nor stay in its paths. The murderer rises at dawn; He kills the poor and the needy, And at night he becomes a thief. The eye of the adulterer waits for the twilight, Saying, ‘No eye will see me,’ And he covers his face. In the dark they dig into [the penetrable walls of] houses; They shut themselves up by day; They do not know the light [of day]. For the morning is the same to him as the thick darkness [of midnight]; For he is familiar with the terrors of thick darkness. “They are insignificant on the surface of the water; Their portion is cursed on the earth; They do not turn toward the vineyards. Drought and heat consume the snow waters; So does Sheol (the nether world, the place of the dead) [consume] those who have sinned. A mother will forget him; The worm feeds on him until he is no longer remembered. And wickedness will be broken like a tree [which cannot be restored]. He preys on the barren (childless) woman And does no good for the widow. Yet God draws away the mighty by His power; He rises, but no one has assurance of life. God gives them security, and they are supported; And His eyes are on their ways. They are exalted for a little while, and then they are gone; Moreover, they are brought low and like everything [they are] gathered up and taken out of the way; Even like the heads of grain they are cut off. And if this is not so, who can prove me a liar And make my speech worthless?”’

Job 24:1-25

Today’s study includes information from:


Study Notes:

God knows the appointed times. We do not. We need to lean not on our own understanding but rather trust in God! God knows what He is doing. We need to acknowledge Him in all our ways and He will make our path straight! We need to seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and allow Him to take care of everything else!

Today’s study summary:

Verses 2-12: This is one of the most graphic pictures of oppression and the “poor” found in the Bible. Job wondered how the wicked can live this way and still escape divine justice (Psalm 10:8)

Verses 18:25: Job angrily denounced the wicked. Compare his words to those found in Psalms (e.g., Psalms Chapters 35, 69, 109, 140). Within his soul, Job still believed that God would judge evildoers in His time.

(In verses 18-21), again Job referred to the opinions of his counselors, saying that if their view were correct, all the wicked should be experiencing punishment. But it is obvious they were not.

Verses 22-25: Job’s view was that their punishment would come eventually (“exalted for a little while”). Retribution needed the timing of God’s wisdom, when He determined wrongs would be made right. Job was totally confident that his point could not be refuted.

Book of Job ExplainedChapter 24

So where are you at today? How will you respond to the offer from God of grace, mercy, and salvation? Are you ready to lean into all that God has for you? Are you ready to persevere and trust and have your faith built up? My hope and prayer is that You will ask Jesus into your heart so that I will get to spend eternity in God’s presence with you. Are you ready for forgiveness and peace? Are you ready for a hope and a future? Are you ready for a transformation where the old is gone and the new has come? Are you ready to being the journey of knowing right from wrong? Then let’s pray together to invite Jesus into your heart and your life so that His peace which surpasses all understanding can guide you and comfort you, protect your heart and mind in Christ Jesus. If this is the first time you have prayed to invite Jesus into your heart, leave me a comment so that I can rejoice with the angels in Heaven. If this is a re commitment to Jesus, leave me a comment so that I can rejoice with the angels in Heaven. If you are still questioning or seeking, don’t go it alone, feel free to leave me a comment so we can discuss it.

Let’s pray:

^^^^^^^^^^^Will you be willing to put your name there today?

Let's check our heart and out minds and turn to God for the answer so as to accomplish His perfect plan and will.


The Story of Job. – Day 27

A new day of a new week of work. A new day with new plans to make. Last full sprint begins. Two day offsite begins. People traveling. Discussions to be had. Discerning to be required to know who is who. Discerning the messages in order to realize where it is God wants me. Trying to understand how to get there. Trying to understand the motives. Trying to understand the messages. Trying to understand the purpose. Trying to understand the value. Trying to parse through the messages. I know I have value to God and He has a plan and a purpose for me. When someone shares that I am not giving myself enough credit for the value I have, how to I hold that. When someone shares that people like me where I am at but don’t see it being a higher level role, how do I hold that. When you like doing things that help people and want to make sure you not only make a scratch or a dent but that you can actually move the dial and make a difference, where will that put you? How do you take in the various feedback or input and make the right decision that will keep you aligned with God’s purpose and plans while adding value to the company and the people who depend on or use the company resources? They key is to keep leaning into God in the midst of the messages from your friends. The key is to keep asking God in the midst of each conversation you have with your friends. The key is to not try to go it alone but to allow the Holy Spirit to bring a peace of the right decision so that you can step into it and become who God created you to be. Remember, you are alive and no matter what happens the joy of the Lord is your strength and so “Happy Today!”

Let’s discern what we are being told in order that we won’t be stuck in analysis paralysis but do something about it. Let’s listen for the voice of truth in and thru the words being spoken and shared. Let’s listen to what God’s Word has to say to us today…


Today’s reading comes to use from Job 22:

‘Then Eliphaz the Temanite answered and said, “Can a vigorous man be of use to God, Or a wise man be useful to himself? Is it any pleasure or joy to the Almighty that you are righteous? Or is it of benefit to Him that you make your ways perfect? Is it because of your fear of Him that He corrects you, That He enters into judgment against you? Is not your wickedness great, And your sins without end? For you have taken pledges of your brothers without cause, And stripped men naked. You have not given water to the weary to drink, And you have withheld bread from the hungry. But the land is possessed by the man with power, And the favored and honorable man dwells in it. You have sent widows away empty-handed, And the arms (strength) of the fatherless have been broken. Therefore snares surround you, And sudden dread terrifies and overwhelms you; Or darkness, so that you cannot see, And a flood of water covers you. “Is not God in the height of heaven? And behold the distant stars, how high they are! You say, ‘What does God know [about me]? Can He judge through the thick darkness? Thick clouds are a hiding place for Him, so that He cannot see, And He walks on the vault (circle) of the heavens.’ Will you keep to the ancient path That wicked men walked [in the time of Noah], Men who were snatched away before their time, Whose foundations were poured out like a river? They said to God, ‘Depart from us! What can the Almighty do for us or to us?’ Yet He filled their houses with good things; But the counsel of the wicked and ungodly is far from me. The righteous see it and are glad; And the innocent mock and laugh at them, saying, ‘Surely our adversaries are cut off and destroyed, And fire has consumed their abundance.’ “Now yield and submit yourself to Him [agree with God and be conformed to His will] and be at peace; In this way [you will prosper and great] good will come to you. Please receive the law and instruction from His mouth And establish His words in your heart and keep them. If you return to the Almighty [and submit and humble yourself before Him], you will be built up [and restored]; If you remove unrighteousness far from your tents, And place your gold in the dust, And the gold of Ophir among the stones of the brooks [considering it of little value], And make the Almighty your gold And your precious silver, Then you will have delight in the Almighty, And you will lift up your face to God. You will pray to Him, and He will hear you, And you will pay your vows. You will also decide and decree a thing, and it will be established for you; And the light [of God’s favor] will shine upon your ways. When you are cast down and humbled, you will speak with confidence, And the humble person He will lift up and save. He will even rescue the one [for whom you intercede] who is not innocent; And he will be rescued through the cleanness of your hands.”’

Job 22:1-30

Today’s study includes information from:


Study Notes:

Today’s reading is an interesting combination of pointing out flaws (real or not) in order to point Job back to God. As I meditate on that before jumping into the study I consider what others have been pointing out to me (real or not – yet to be decided) in order to ensure I decide in accordance to God’s perfect will and God’s perfect plan. How will I respond to differing opinions all looking to exhort me to make that decision. When people are speaking to your their truth, what is the best way to parse through it and get the real truth from it? Will you be persuaded by the truth or by the urge · encourage · call on · enjoin · adjure · charge · try to persuade · press · pressure · put pressure on · use pressure on · pressurize · lean on · push · egg on · spur · incite · goad · bid · appeal to · entreat · implore · beseech · advise · counsel · admonish · warn? I am to be salt and light into the world around me. I am to be love and Jesus’s hands extended into the lives around me. I am to point people to the reason for the season and the source of all my joy and hope and love.

Today’s study summary:

Verses 1-30: In his final speech (that goes to 27:23), Eliphaz blasts Job with his most vicious attack. Beginning with the assumption that wickedness brings only God’s judgment (verses 1-5). Eliphaz complies a catalog of sins of which Job must be guilty (verses 6-20). Finally, in a beautiful passage on the forgiveness of God, he appeals to Job to repent (verses 21-30), though he directs it toward the wrong person. Eliphaz’s last speech got nasty with Job, as his frustration rose.

Verses 1-30: Within a string of specific accusations in his third speech, “Eliphaz” included Job among those committed to the ways of “wickedness” who believe God does not see or know their sin. All these accusations were refuted by both Job (29:11-17; 31:13-22), and God (1:8; 42:7-8).

Verses 2-4 and 12-14: This counselor repeated the emphasis on the almighty nature of God, saying that God was so lofty and transcendent that He had no direct concern at all with Job. God didn’t care personally about his complaints and claims to righteousness. God was not involved in the trivia of his life.

Verses 5-11: This miserable comforter accused Job of wickedness that was great, naming various sins against humanity as the reasons for Job’s trouble (verses 10-11).

Verses 7-9: Eliphaz unfairly charged Job with callous sins against the needy, characterizing his friend the way many people do the wealthy today.

Verses 15-19: Again, the fate of the wicked was expressed in the simplistic idea that all suffering comes from sin. Contrary to what Job had argued, the wicked characteristically die prematurely, and Job’s claim that God prospered them (verse 18a), was counsel that Eliphaz rejected (verses 18b-20).

Verses 21-30: Eliphaz painted a picture of the life of blessing in store for Job if only he would return to God and repent of his sin (verse 23), emphasizing again that he did not believe Job was innocent (verse 30). “Stop all the speeches and complaints, repent, and everything will be fine,” he thought.

Verses 21-27: Job was urged to repent with the promise that God would then answer his prayers. This was not an admonishment to pursue righteousness for its own sake, however, but a temptation to respond to God only because of the benefits Job might receive.

Book of Job ExplainedChapter 22

God wants a relationship with us. Our faith in Him isn’t because we can get something from him but because of love and trust in Him. God so loves the world that He gave us Jesus, He sent Jesus in order that we could be saved for He doesn’t want anyone to perish but to have everlasting life with Him. It requires a choice, a decision to receive the gift of Jesus though. It requires that we go beyond the ebbs and flow of life and step into a real relationship with Jesus. Yes, we have all missed the mark and are not perfect but God has made a way when there didn’t seem to be a way in order for us to be reconciled back unto Him and it is Jesus!

Imagine a life experience where you need to stick closer to God to get thru it. Luke 1:26-38

We need to receive and embrace what God has for you. We need to step into it even when those around you may not be encouraging you. We get to consider it pure joy when we face trials of many kinds. Joy comes out of relationship with God. Luke 1:26-38

No matter what I am going thru because I know that God is in it. It is difficult and challenging, God has given me strength, my relationship brings joy into the situation. Taking hold of Philippians 4:6.

Just like Mary, we can find joy and our own song in the midst of great trials and challenges. Luke 1:46-55


So where are you at today? How will you respond to the offer from God of grace, mercy, and salvation? Are you ready to lean into all that God has for you? Are you ready to persevere and trust and have your faith built up? My hope and prayer is that You will ask Jesus into your heart so that I will get to spend eternity in God’s presence with you. Are you ready for forgiveness and peace? Are you ready for a hope and a future? Are you ready for a transformation where the old is gone and the new has come? Are you ready to being the journey of knowing right from wrong? Then let’s pray together to invite Jesus into your heart and your life so that His peace which surpasses all understanding can guide you and comfort you, protect your heart and mind in Christ Jesus. If this is the first time you have prayed to invite Jesus into your heart, leave me a comment so that I can rejoice with the angels in Heaven. If this is a re commitment to Jesus, leave me a comment so that I can rejoice with the angels in Heaven. If you are still questioning or seeking, don’t go it alone, feel free to leave me a comment so we can discuss it.

Let’s pray:

^^^^^^^^^^^Will you be willing to put your name there today?

What do you do when you don't know what to do?


The Story of Job. – Day 24

What to do? How to respond? You give your decision and are told you are supported but have one more conversation with someone else. You share your decision and are told that they want you to be happy even though they wouldn’t be happy with your decision and so would support whatever you decide. Then a new conversation starts trying to understand your decision. Not sure if it is a stall tactic or a reverse of course. Just know I feel frustrated and unsure what just happened. When you get mixed messages it makes you wonder what you can and can’t or should and shouldn’t believe.

My trust is in God. My hope is in God. My good friend listens and can empathize with me. My wife hears me and wonders with me. But now what? How long do I have to wait to know? Do I have to take action that will force people’s hands? Do I have to just ask more questions than try to give answers? Do I give my wants and needs and ask what they would recommend? What do I do now? I know that strength will rise as I wait upon the Lord, so I know that in and through all of this that is my aim. I am going to turn to God and His Word and to His people for wisdom and guidance because I know that if I seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness that He will take care of the rest. What to do?

I will keep doing what I know to do. God’s Word never returns void and even as I looked at my phone today’s verse from Matthew 23:11 reminds me:

and my friend shared through the Bible app 1 Peter 1:13 which reminds me:

It is interesting the things you find when you try to find a picture to match your title. I searched for “What do you do when you don’t know what to do?” Does it matter if you feel frustrated? Does it matter if you feel insulted? We can’t control what others do but we can control our responses! God’s Word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path! Through it all I know that my redeemer lives and that in and through Jesus Christ my Lord and Savior I won’t be overcome by the world but I can be an overcomer without fear because Jesus has overcome the world! In the midst of the trials I can consider it pure joy thanks to Jesus for I know that it will build up my faith, it will build up my ability to persevere, and in the end He will make me complete and lacking nothing through it all. Remember to not get bitter and to forgive! Remember to not seek vengeance for vengeance belongs to the Lord!


Today’s reading comes from Job 19:

‘Then Job answered and said, “How long will you torment and exasperate me And crush me with words? These ten times you have insulted me; You are not ashamed to wrong me [and harden your hearts against me]. And if it were true that I have erred, My error would remain with me [and I would be conscious of it]. If indeed you [braggarts] vaunt and magnify yourselves over me And prove my disgrace (humiliation) to me, Know then that God has wronged me and overthrown me And has closed His net around me.
“Behold, I cry out, ‘Violence!’ but I am not heard; I shout for help, but there is no justice. He has walled up my way so that I cannot pass, And He has set darkness upon my paths. He has stripped me of my honor And removed the crown from my head. He breaks me down on every side, and I am gone; He has uprooted my hope like a tree. He has also kindled His wrath [like a fire] against me And He considers and counts me as one of His adversaries. His troops come together And build up their way and siege works against me And camp around my tent. “He has put my brothers far from me, And my acquaintances are completely estranged from me. My relatives have failed [me], And my intimate friends have forgotten me. Those who live [temporarily] in my house and my maids consider me a stranger; I am a foreigner in their sight. I call to my servant, but he does not answer; I have to implore him with words. My breath is repulsive to my wife, And I am loathsome to my own brothers. Even young children despise me; When I get up, they speak against me. All the men of my council hate me; Those I love have turned against me. My bone clings to my skin and to my flesh, And I have escaped [death] by the skin of my teeth. Have pity on me! Have pity on me, O you my friends, For the hand of God has touched me. Why do you persecute me as God does? Why are you not satisfied with my flesh (anguish)?
“Oh, that the words I now speak were written! Oh, that they were recorded in a scroll! That with an iron stylus and [molten] lead They were engraved in the rock forever! For I know that my Redeemer and Vindicator lives, And at the last He will take His stand upon the earth. Even after my [mortal] skin is destroyed [by death], Yet from my [immortal] flesh I will see God, Whom I, even I, will see for myself, And my eyes will see Him and not another! My heart faints within me. If you say, ‘How shall we [continue to] persecute him?’ And ‘What pretext for a case against him can we find [since we claim the root of these afflictions is found in him]?’ Then beware and be afraid of the sword [of divine vengeance] for yourselves, For wrathful are the punishments of that sword, So that you may know there is judgment.”’

‘Then Job answered and said, “How long will you torment and exasperate me And crush me with words? These ten times you have insulted me; You are not ashamed to wrong me [and harden your hearts against me]. And if it were true that I have erred, My error would remain with me [and I would be conscious of it]. If indeed you [braggarts] vaunt and magnify yourselves over me And prove my disgrace (humiliation) to me, Know then that God has wronged me and overthrown me And has closed His net around me.

“Behold, I cry out, ‘Violence!’ but I am not heard; I shout for help, but there is no justice. He has walled up my way so that I cannot pass, And He has set darkness upon my paths. He has stripped me of my honor And removed the crown from my head. He breaks me down on every side, and I am gone; He has uprooted my hope like a tree. He has also kindled His wrath [like a fire] against me And He considers and counts me as one of His adversaries. His troops come together And build up their way and siege works against me And camp around my tent. “He has put my brothers far from me, And my acquaintances are completely estranged from me. My relatives have failed [me], And my intimate friends have forgotten me. Those who live [temporarily] in my house and my maids consider me a stranger; I am a foreigner in their sight. I call to my servant, but he does not answer; I have to implore him with words. My breath is repulsive to my wife, And I am loathsome to my own brothers. Even young children despise me; When I get up, they speak against me. All the men of my council hate me; Those I love have turned against me. My bone clings to my skin and to my flesh, And I have escaped [death] by the skin of my teeth. Have pity on me! Have pity on me, O you my friends, For the hand of God has touched me. Why do you persecute me as God does? Why are you not satisfied with my flesh (anguish)?

“Oh, that the words I now speak were written! Oh, that they were recorded in a scroll! That with an iron stylus and [molten] lead They were engraved in the rock forever! For I know that my Redeemer and Vindicator lives, And at the last He will take His stand upon the earth. Even after my [mortal] skin is destroyed [by death], Yet from my [immortal] flesh I will see God, Whom I, even I, will see for myself, And my eyes will see Him and not another! My heart faints within me. If you say, ‘How shall we [continue to] persecute him?’ And ‘What pretext for a case against him can we find [since we claim the root of these afflictions is found in him]?’ Then beware and be afraid of the sword [of divine vengeance] for yourselves, For wrathful are the punishments of that sword, So that you may know there is judgment.”’

Job 19:1-29

Today’s study includes information from:


Study Notes:

With time being short today I am going to share some of the top call outs from the Bible study. You have the links above to double click or dive deeper into today’s reading.

Verses 1-29: Job’s response to Bildad’s second speech was desperate. This is Job’s second response to Bildad. The common charge of his friends has brought such grief to Job that he cries again for a mediator, and affirms his deep belief in the ultimate justice of Yahweh, even if His justice is revealed in the life to come. Job’s words concerning His “Redeemer” and his belief in the resurrection of the body are among the most significant in the book.

(In verses 1-19), Job felt “strange” by God and abandoned by his “Close friends” and what remained of his “relatives”. No one stood up to defend him. All that was once strong in Job’s life, his family, his social standing, his wealth, his faith, was now broken and “removed”.

In verses 1-5: Job began with the anguished cry that his friends have become defiant and relentless for mentors (verses 2-3), and they have had no effect on his dialog with the sin they imagine is present (verse 4).

Verses 5-7: Job confessed that if God sent him friends like Bildad, who needs enemies? He feared there was no justice.

Verses 8-10: Before his trials began, Job had been one of the most important men in the East. But this adversity had “stripped” him “of” his “glory”, ruining his financial position and his standing in the community. He could no longer see what the future held (“darkness in my paths”).

(In verses 8-21), Job rehearsed his suffering. God had closed him in, stripped him, broken him and turned against him (verses 8-12). His family and friends had failed him (verses 15-19), so that he was to be pitied because God had caused this to occur (verses 21-22). “In my flesh” (verse 26) speaks of a resurrected body. Though it may also be translated “apart from my flesh,” as a spirit being, the emphasis of the original means “from the standpoint of my flesh,” in my resurrected body. Here then is clear evidence of the Old Testament belief in the resurrection of the human body.

In verses 23-29 we see Job at his greatest despair, but his faith appeared at its highest as he confidently affirmed that God was his Redeemer. He wanted that confidence in the record for all to know (verses 23-24). Job wished that the activities of his life were put into words and “engraved in the rock,” so all would know that he had not sinned to the magnitude of his suffering. God granted his prayer. God was his Redeemer (compare Exodus 6:6; Psalms 19:14; 72:14; Isa. 43:14; 47:4; 49:26; Jer. 50:34), who would vindicate him in that last day of judgment on the earth when justice was finally done (Jer. 12:1-3; John 5:25, 29; Rev. 20:11-15).

Verses 23-27: God has humiliated Job (verses 8-12), his friends and relatives have abandoned him (verses 13-20), and he has been reduced to pleading for pity (verses 21-22). But from the depths of degradation he expresses the confidence that if his case could only be recorded for posterity, future generations would judge him favorably (verses 23-24). Furthermore, he knows confidently that he has a “Redeemer” (verse 25, Hebrew goel), One who will champion his cause and vindicate him. The Redeemer is more than an arbiter (9:33) or a witness (16:19) but a Kinsman-Redeemer who will avenge him. Clearly, Job viewed God Himself as the Redeemer, and the Hebrew word is in fact used often of God (Psalm 19:14; Isa. 41:14; etc.).

Book of Job ExplainedChapter 19

In the midst of the trial, in the midst of the trouble, in the midst of the struggle, in the midst of the storm, draw closer to God, hold tighter to God, and fear not, just believe. This time on earth is but a breath and our aim is our end of spending eternity with God, so don’t give up, don’t lose hope, don’t fear, put your hope and trust in God and that He knows what He is doing in and through the process and the journey. Our God reigns!


So where are you at today? How will you respond to the offer from God of grace, mercy, and salvation? Are you ready to lean into all that God has for you? Are you ready to persevere and trust and have your faith built up? My hope and prayer is that You will ask Jesus into your heart so that I will get to spend eternity in God’s presence with you. Are you ready for forgiveness and peace? Are you ready for a hope and a future? Are you ready for a transformation where the old is gone and the new has come? Are you ready to being the journey of knowing right from wrong? Then let’s pray together to invite Jesus into your heart and your life so that His peace which surpasses all understanding can guide you and comfort you, protect your heart and mind in Christ Jesus. If this is the first time you have prayed to invite Jesus into your heart, leave me a comment so that I can rejoice with the angels in Heaven. If this is a re commitment to Jesus, leave me a comment so that I can rejoice with the angels in Heaven. If you are still questioning or seeking, don’t go it alone, feel free to leave me a comment so we can discuss it.

Let’s pray:

^^^^^^^^^^^Will you be willing to put your name there today?

What motivates your decision?


The Story of Job. – Day 23

You are at a crossroads. You are at the door to change. You are facing the decision of more of the same or something different. You are seeking wisdom. You are hearing advice. You are asking questions. The answers are clear in some cases and vague in others. The answers are direct in some cases and open ended in others. Knowing that there is wisdom in many counselors, I ask for input. I trust into God rather than my own understanding in order to pursue God’s perfect plan and will at this juncture. I try to be sensitive to the Holy Spirit in order to discern the right decision. Today I need to choose. Today I need to decide. Today’s decision will impact many. Today’s decision will transform the day to day work and yet allow for similar surroundings. So before I go, I stop and turn to God’s Word.


Today’s reading comes out of Job 18:

‘Then Bildad the Shuhite answered and said, “How long will you hunt for words and continue these speeches? Do some clear thinking and show understanding and then we can talk. Why are we regarded as beasts, As if [we are] stupid (senseless) in your eyes? You who tear yourself apart in anger, Is the earth to be abandoned for your sake, Or the rock to be moved out of its place? “Indeed, the light of the wicked will be put out, And the flame of his fire will not shine. The light will be dark in his tent, And his lamp beside him will be put out. The vigorous stride will be shortened, And his own counsel and the scheme [in which he trusted] will bring his downfall. For the wicked is thrown into a net by his own feet (wickedness), And he steps on the webbing [of the lattice-covered pit]. A snare catches him by the heel, And a trap snaps shut on him. A noose is hidden for him on the ground, And a trap for him on the path. Terrors frighten him on every side And chase at his heels. The strength [of the wicked] is famished and weakened, And disaster is ready at his side [if he stops]. His skin is devoured by disease; The firstborn of death [the worst of diseases] consumes his limbs. He is torn from his tent which he trusted [for safety], And he is marched and brought to the king of terrors (death). Nothing of his dwells in his tent; Brimstone (burning sulfur) is scattered over his dwelling [to purify it]. The roots [of the wicked] are dried up below, And above, his branch is cut off and withers. Memory of him perishes from the earth, And he has no name on the street. He is driven and propelled from light into darkness, And chased from the inhabited world. He has no offspring or prosperity among his people, Nor any survivor where he sojourned. Those in the west are astonished and appalled at his fate, And those in the east are seized with horror. Surely such are the dwellings of the wicked and the ungodly, And such is the place of him who does not know or recognize or honor God.”’

Job 18:1-21

Today’s study includes information from:


Study Notes:

When people try to convince you of something do they use tactics? Are they using logic tactics? Are they using debate tactics? Are they using emotional tactics? Are they using fear tactics? What motivates you? What are you looking for in your conversations? Is it a peace, but not just someone trying to butter you up, a real peace that surpasses all understanding that allows you to know God’s in it?

We see as we look into the study of Job 18 how Bildad in his second attempt to speak to Job that reason isn’t working and so he moves on to trying to persuade Job with fear by scaring him into reality as he believes that Job is about to die the way of the wicked.

We see how Bildad, as with the previous speech to Job by Eliphaz, makes his second go merciless · pitiless · cruel · heartless · hard-hearted · hard · stony-hearted · stony · with a heart of stone · cold-blooded · cold-hearted · harsh · callous · severe · unmerciful · unrelenting · unsparing · unforgiving · unfeeling · uncaring · unsympathetic · uncharitable · lacking compassion · relentless · remorseless · unbending · inflexible · inexorable · implacable · unpitying · unremitting · steely · brutal · inhuman · inhumane · barbarous · barbaric · savage · bloodthirsty · sadistic · vicious · fierce · ferocious · cutthroat · dog-eat-dog · inclement · fell · marble-hearted. He tries to bring Job into his reality by telling him to “Do some clear thinking and show understanding and then we can talk.” He is trying to get him to stop being emotional and complaining and to calm down so he can be logical in order to be able to have a conversation.

We how he next moves into trying to reject and dismiss what Job had said and scoff at him when he says “Why are we regarded as beasts, As if [we are] stupid (senseless) in your eyes? You who tear yourself apart in anger, Is the earth to be abandoned for your sake, Or the rock to be moved out of its place?

After all that he moves into telling a story of how the wicked will have bad outcomes and experiences.

We see how Bildad takes at how Job had described his friends in Job 12:7-12 when he describes them in terms of animals.

We see how Bildad’s story speaks to light and darkness in terms of life and and death. We learn how God is light and so for our lamps to be lit requires God to light it. We also learn how Bildad took it to the next step in speaking “the light of the wicked will be put out, And the flame of his fire will not shine.

The light of the righteous shines brightly, but the lamp of the wicked is snuffed out.

Proverbs 13:9

25And he is not served by human hands, as if he needed anything. Rather, he himself gives everyone life and breath and everything else. 26From one man he made all the nations, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he marked out their appointed times in history and the boundaries of their lands. 27God did this so that they would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from any one of us. 28‘For in him we live and move and have our being.’ As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring.’

Acts 17:25-28

We learn how Bildad in speaking of the wicked, compare them to how birds and animals are captured by “nets”, “snares”, “traps”, “nooses” and how that is the way the wicked will meet their demise.


So where are you at today? How will you respond to the offer from God of grace, mercy, and salvation? Are you ready to lean into all that God has for you? Are you ready to persevere and trust and have your faith built up? My hope and prayer is that You will ask Jesus into your heart so that I will get to spend eternity in God’s presence with you. Are you ready for forgiveness and peace? Are you ready for a hope and a future? Are you ready for a transformation where the old is gone and the new has come? Are you ready to being the journey of knowing right from wrong? Then let’s pray together to invite Jesus into your heart and your life so that His peace which surpasses all understanding can guide you and comfort you, protect your heart and mind in Christ Jesus. If this is the first time you have prayed to invite Jesus into your heart, leave me a comment so that I can rejoice with the angels in Heaven. If this is a re commitment to Jesus, leave me a comment so that I can rejoice with the angels in Heaven. If you are still questioning or seeking, don’t go it alone, feel free to leave me a comment so we can discuss it.

Let’s pray:

^^^^^^^^^^^Will you be willing to put your name there today?

What do you do when you don’t know what to do?


Do what you know how to do!

You are at a crossroads and need to make a decision, what do you do?

You are at a decision point in your life and need to decide, what do you do?

You are hearing about the state of the world and need to decide where you stand, what do you do?

You are hearing about wars and rumors of wars, you are hearing about natural disasters including floods and fires, what do you think it means, what do you do?

You are hearing about the threat of the end of the world, what do you do?

Who do you believe? What do you believe? Where does your hope come from? Where does you help come from? Where will you turn? Where can you turn? How will you decide? How will you know real from fake? How will you know true from false? What do you do? How do you know?

As for me and my house we will serve the Lord. What do I do? I turn to God and pray. I trust in Him with all my heart. I lean not on my own understanding but in all my ways acknowledge Him. Worry changes nothing but prayer changes everything. I seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness. I ask, I seek, and I knock.

How about you? Don’t be deceived! Don’t get mixed up or confused between the world’s way and God’s way!


What do you do when you don’t know what to do?

Turn to God’s Words for answers, for me I choose a devotional at the beginning of the year (or whenever I finish the previous reading) which brings me through the Bible and allow God to speak to me throughout the year through His Word because He is the alpha and omega, the beginning and the end, nothing comes as a surprise and so He is able to speak to me right where I am at with and through His Word found in the Bible. My current reading is coming from Read the Bible for Life 4 + 1 Plan. I pray so that the Holy Spirit can point me in the right direction and cover me with a peace that surpasses all understanding.

Today’s reading from God’s Word:

(Day 305 of 312)

  • Nehemiah 12
  • Zechariah 3
  • Zechariah 4
  • Acts 26:12-23
  • Revelation 19:11-21
  • Psalms 143

Can you never get too far away to be able to turn back to God. You may have gone on your long journey away or apart from God. Why not turn back to God today?

Will you try to rush things or are you willing to work through it at a normal pace? Are you willing to wait upon the Lord and allow Him to renew your strength? Are you willing to wait upon the Lord and listen to what He has to say?

Will you start with purifying yourself before you start trying to go around and purifying others?

Will you use the tools and instruments God has given you to use to accomplish His will and His purpose?

Will you give thanks? Will you be generous in your life?

Will you choose to listen and trust God’s Word which is true and desires that you have life and life more abundantly rather than the lies and deception of the devil who is trying to rob, kill and destroy you?

We can trust in God because it is not by force nor by strength but by the Spirit of God that all things are possible. In God’s power nothing can stand against it.

Will you speak to what God has done in and through your life when people ask of you?

Will you tell or speak or testify to what God has done in and through you?

We need to turn back to God and ask for forgiveness for the things we have done wrong.

‘I preached first to those in Damascus, then in Jerusalem and throughout all Judea, and also to the Gentiles, that all must repent of their sins and turn to God—and prove they have changed by the good things they do. ‘

Acts of the Apostles 26:20

Are you ready for the return of Jesus as He comes from heaven for the final battle? Will do decide before it is too late to receive Jesus as your Lord and Savior?

‘Then I saw heaven opened, and a white horse was standing there. Its rider was named Faithful and True, for he judges fairly and wages a righteous war. His eyes were like flames of fire, and on his head were many crowns. A name was written on him that no one understood except himself. He wore a robe dipped in blood, and his title was the Word of God. The armies of heaven, dressed in the finest of pure white linen, followed him on white horses. From his mouth came a sharp sword to strike down the nations. He will rule them with an iron rod. He will release the fierce wrath of God, the Almighty, like juice flowing from a winepress. On his robe at his thigh was written this title: King of all kings and Lord of all lords. Then I saw an angel standing in the sun, shouting to the vultures flying high in the sky: “Come! Gather together for the great banquet God has prepared. Come and eat the flesh of kings, generals, and strong warriors; of horses and their riders; and of all humanity, both free and slave, small and great.” Then I saw the beast and the kings of the world and their armies gathered together to fight against the one sitting on the horse and his army. And the beast was captured, and with him the false prophet who did mighty miracles on behalf of the beast—miracles that deceived all who had accepted the mark of the beast and who worshiped his statue. Both the beast and his false prophet were thrown alive into the fiery lake of burning sulfur. Their entire army was killed by the sharp sword that came from the mouth of the one riding the white horse. And the vultures all gorged themselves on the dead bodies.’

Revelation 19:11-21

Will you choose to spend eternity with God? Will you choose to spend eternity apart from God with the devil?

Ask God who will hear your prayer and is faithful.

Don’t lose hope or paralyzed by fear because of the darkness around you. Turn to God and don’t be stuck in depression but instead start to do God’s will and for His glory forgive others and pursue God and His righteousness.


So where are you at today? My hope and prayer is that You will ask Jesus into your heart so that I will get to spend eternity in God’s presence with you. Are you ready for forgiveness and peace? Are you ready for a hope and a future? Are you ready for a transformation where the old is gone and the new has come? Are you ready to being the journey of knowing right from wrong? Then let’s pray together to invite Jesus into your heart and your life so that His peace which surpasses all understanding can guide you and comfort you, protect your heart and mind in Christ Jesus. If this is the first time you have prayed to invite Jesus into your heart, leave me a comment so that I can rejoice with the angels in Heaven. If this is a re commitment to Jesus, leave me a comment so that I can rejoice with the angels in Heaven. If you are still questioning or seeking, don’t go it alone, feel free to leave me a comment so we can discuss it.

Let’s pray:

How far off track do you need to get before you turn back?


Imagine getting offered a deal and then having it taken away. Imagine that you get bitter, angry, and possibly even depressed. Imagine God keeps prompting you through songs on the radio to forgive them but instead you stay on the downward spiral. Imagine that it causes your work to suffer. Imagine that it causes your home life to suffer. Imagine that it is impacting all of your relationships and drive. How far off track will you need to go before you turn back? How bad does it have to get before you will obey what God is telling you? Do you realize there is still hope? Imagine a friend offers you hope in the form of medication. Imagine you say no thanks God will take care of this. You haven’t lost all hope in God but you have lost hope in forgiveness and people. Until that day when the tipping point hits …

For me, I have shared this story with many people through my blog as well as at work during an opportunity to share a Story Slam. Forgiveness is the key! I learned on the other side that the lesson was worth sharing as so many people started to come and ask to speak with me, I guess they saw the change and wanted to learn more, I learned about all the trials and troubles, betrayals and deception that had taken place in their lives and the only message or response I had for them was to forgive. They would say the same thing I had been for months “but Phil you know what they did to me” and I would share that is what I would say to God when He kept asking me to forgive but that I learned that day when 7×70 started to play on the radio and God and I had it out that forgiveness was the key for me to heal, it wasn’t about them, it was about my response and hence all of our responses, and even after I forgave them I had one more aha moment when the words “as you forgive others, I will forgive you” came and so I started to ask God to forgive me for having rejected Him by not forgiving when He asked the first, second, … times and how the pain, the drain, the emotions of carrying the unforgiveness was gone right after that. Not forgiving is like taking poison and expecting the other person to get sick, it doesn’t work that way.

So we need to turn back to God! When we you stray from God’s will and God’s way, you need to turn back and obey His commands. He will take you back and celebrate it just like we learned in the story of the prodigal son. Return to a life of the living! Return to God’s plan to give you a hope and a future! Return to God’s plan that we will live life and live it more abundantly. Where are you at in your life? Are you walking it out with Jesus, in obedience. Are you walking away from Jesus, out of disobedience? Are you stopped at a crossroads and trying to figure out what you should do? Why don’t you just turn back to God and humbly receive His instruction, direction, correction, and forgiveness. Remember what God’s Word says that “if my people who are called by my name humble themselves and pray and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven forgive their sins and will heal their land.

Is today your day?


Today’s reading gets started in 2 Kings 17:

‘Hoshea son of Elah began to rule over Israel in the twelfth year of King Ahaz’s reign in Judah. He reigned in Samaria nine years. He did what was evil in the Lord ’s sight, but not to the same extent as the kings of Israel who ruled before him. King Shalmaneser of Assyria attacked King Hoshea, so Hoshea was forced to pay heavy tribute to Assyria. But Hoshea stopped paying the annual tribute and conspired against the king of Assyria by asking King So of Egypt to help him shake free of Assyria’s power. When the king of Assyria discovered this treachery, he seized Hoshea and put him in prison. Then the king of Assyria invaded the entire land, and for three years he besieged the city of Samaria. Finally, in the ninth year of King Hoshea’s reign, Samaria fell, and the people of Israel were exiled to Assyria. They were settled in colonies in Halah, along the banks of the Habor River in Gozan, and in the cities of the Medes. This disaster came upon the people of Israel because they worshiped other gods. They sinned against the Lord their God, who had brought them safely out of Egypt and had rescued them from the power of Pharaoh, the king of Egypt. They had followed the practices of the pagan nations the Lord had driven from the land ahead of them, as well as the practices the kings of Israel had introduced. The people of Israel had also secretly done many things that were not pleasing to the Lord their God. They built pagan shrines for themselves in all their towns, from the smallest outpost to the largest walled city. They set up sacred pillars and Asherah poles at the top of every hill and under every green tree. They offered sacrifices on all the hilltops, just like the nations the Lord had driven from the land ahead of them. So the people of Israel had done many evil things, arousing the Lord ’s anger. Yes, they worshiped idols, despite the Lord ’s specific and repeated warnings. Again and again the Lord had sent his prophets and seers to warn both Israel and Judah: “Turn from all your evil ways. Obey my commands and decrees—the entire law that I commanded your ancestors to obey, and that I gave you through my servants the prophets.” But the Israelites would not listen. They were as stubborn as their ancestors who had refused to believe in the Lord their God. They rejected his decrees and the covenant he had made with their ancestors, and they despised all his warnings. They worshiped worthless idols, so they became worthless themselves. They followed the example of the nations around them, disobeying the Lord ’s command not to imitate them. They rejected all the commands of the Lord their God and made two calves from metal. They set up an Asherah pole and worshiped Baal and all the forces of heaven. They even sacrificed their own sons and daughters in the fire. They consulted fortune-tellers and practiced sorcery and sold themselves to evil, arousing the Lord ’s anger. Because the Lord was very angry with Israel, he swept them away from his presence. Only the tribe of Judah remained in the land. But even the people of Judah refused to obey the commands of the Lord their God, for they followed the evil practices that Israel had introduced. The Lord rejected all the descendants of Israel. He punished them by handing them over to their attackers until he had banished Israel from his presence. For when the Lord tore Israel away from the kingdom of David, they chose Jeroboam son of Nebat as their king. But Jeroboam drew Israel away from following the Lord and made them commit a great sin. And the people of Israel persisted in all the evil ways of Jeroboam. They did not turn from these sins until the Lord finally swept them away from his presence, just as all his prophets had warned. So Israel was exiled from their land to Assyria, where they remain to this day. The king of Assyria transported groups of people from Babylon, Cuthah, Avva, Hamath, and Sepharvaim and resettled them in the towns of Samaria, replacing the people of Israel. They took possession of Samaria and lived in its towns. But since these foreign settlers did not worship the Lord when they first arrived, the Lord sent lions among them, which killed some of them. So a message was sent to the king of Assyria: “The people you have sent to live in the towns of Samaria do not know the religious customs of the God of the land. He has sent lions among them to destroy them because they have not worshiped him correctly.” The king of Assyria then commanded, “Send one of the exiled priests back to Samaria. Let him live there and teach the new residents the religious customs of the God of the land.” So one of the priests who had been exiled from Samaria returned to Bethel and taught the new residents how to worship the Lord . But these various groups of foreigners also continued to worship their own gods. In town after town where they lived, they placed their idols at the pagan shrines that the people of Samaria had built. Those from Babylon worshiped idols of their god Succoth-benoth. Those from Cuthah worshiped their god Nergal. And those from Hamath worshiped Ashima. The Avvites worshiped their gods Nibhaz and Tartak. And the people from Sepharvaim even burned their own children as sacrifices to their gods Adrammelech and Anammelech. These new residents worshiped the Lord , but they also appointed from among themselves all sorts of people as priests to offer sacrifices at their places of worship. And though they worshiped the Lord , they continued to follow their own gods according to the religious customs of the nations from which they came. And this is still going on today. They continue to follow their former practices instead of truly worshiping the Lord and obeying the decrees, regulations, instructions, and commands he gave the descendants of Jacob, whose name he changed to Israel. For the Lord had made a covenant with the descendants of Jacob and commanded them: “Do not worship any other gods or bow before them or serve them or offer sacrifices to them. But worship only the Lord , who brought you out of Egypt with great strength and a powerful arm. Bow down to him alone, and offer sacrifices only to him. Be careful at all times to obey the decrees, regulations, instructions, and commands that he wrote for you. You must not worship other gods. Do not forget the covenant I made with you, and do not worship other gods. You must worship only the Lord your God. He is the one who will rescue you from all your enemies.” But the people would not listen and continued to follow their former practices. So while these new residents worshiped the Lord , they also worshiped their idols. And to this day their descendants do the same.’

2 Kings 17:1-41

Today’s reading continues into Ezekiel 23:

‘This message came to me from the Lord : “Son of man, once there were two sisters who were daughters of the same mother. They became prostitutes in Egypt. Even as young girls, they allowed men to fondle their breasts. The older girl was named Oholah, and her sister was Oholibah. I married them, and they bore me sons and daughters. I am speaking of Samaria and Jerusalem, for Oholah is Samaria and Oholibah is Jerusalem. “Then Oholah lusted after other lovers instead of me, and she gave her love to the Assyrian officers. They were all attractive young men, captains and commanders dressed in handsome blue, charioteers driving their horses. And so she prostituted herself with the most desirable men of Assyria, worshiping their idols and defiling herself. For when she left Egypt, she did not leave her spirit of prostitution behind. She was still as lewd as in her youth, when the Egyptians slept with her, fondled her breasts, and used her as a prostitute. “And so I handed her over to her Assyrian lovers, whom she desired so much. They stripped her, took away her children as their slaves, and then killed her. After she received her punishment, her reputation was known to every woman in the land. “Yet even though Oholibah saw what had happened to Oholah, her sister, she followed right in her footsteps. And she was even more depraved, abandoning herself to her lust and prostitution. She fawned over all the Assyrian officers—those captains and commanders in handsome uniforms, those charioteers driving their horses—all of them attractive young men. I saw the way she was going, defiling herself just like her older sister. “Then she carried her prostitution even further. She fell in love with pictures that were painted on a wall—pictures of Babylonian military officers, outfitted in striking red uniforms. Handsome belts encircled their waists, and flowing turbans crowned their heads. They were dressed like chariot officers from the land of Babylonia. When she saw these paintings, she longed to give herself to them, so she sent messengers to Babylonia to invite them to come to her. So they came and committed adultery with her, defiling her in the bed of love. After being defiled, however, she rejected them in disgust. “In the same way, I became disgusted with Oholibah and rejected her, just as I had rejected her sister, because she flaunted herself before them and gave herself to satisfy their lusts. Yet she turned to even greater prostitution, remembering her youth when she was a prostitute in Egypt. She lusted after lovers with genitals as large as a donkey’s and emissions like those of a horse. And so, Oholibah, you relived your former days as a young girl in Egypt, when you first allowed your breasts to be fondled. “Therefore, Oholibah, this is what the Sovereign Lord says: I will send your lovers against you from every direction—those very nations from which you turned away in disgust. For the Babylonians will come with all the Chaldeans from Pekod and Shoa and Koa. And all the Assyrians will come with them—handsome young captains, commanders, chariot officers, and other high-ranking officers, all riding their horses. They will all come against you from the north with chariots, wagons, and a great army prepared for attack. They will take up positions on every side, surrounding you with men armed with shields and helmets. And I will hand you over to them for punishment so they can do with you as they please. I will turn my jealous anger against you, and they will deal harshly with you. They will cut off your nose and ears, and any survivors will then be slaughtered by the sword. Your children will be taken away as captives, and everything that is left will be burned. They will strip you of your beautiful clothes and jewels. In this way, I will put a stop to the lewdness and prostitution you brought from Egypt. You will never again cast longing eyes on those things or fondly remember your time in Egypt. “For this is what the Sovereign Lord says: I will surely hand you over to your enemies, to those you loathe, those you rejected. They will treat you with hatred and rob you of all you own, leaving you stark naked. The shame of your prostitution will be exposed to all the world. You brought all this on yourself by prostituting yourself to other nations, defiling yourself with all their idols. Because you have followed in your sister’s footsteps, I will force you to drink the same cup of terror she drank. “Yes, this is what the Sovereign Lord says: “You will drink from your sister’s cup of terror, a cup that is large and deep. It is filled to the brim with scorn and derision. Drunkenness and anguish will fill you, for your cup is filled to the brim with distress and desolation, the same cup your sister Samaria drank. You will drain that cup of terror to the very bottom. Then you will smash it to pieces and beat your breast in anguish. I, the Sovereign Lord , have spoken! “And because you have forgotten me and turned your back on me, this is what the Sovereign Lord says: You must bear the consequences of all your lewdness and prostitution.” The Lord said to me, “Son of man, you must accuse Oholah and Oholibah of all their detestable sins. They have committed both adultery and murder—adultery by worshiping idols and murder by burning as sacrifices the children they bore to me. Furthermore, they have defiled my Temple and violated my Sabbath day! On the very day that they sacrificed their children to their idols, they boldly came into my Temple to worship! They came in and defiled my house. “You sisters sent messengers to distant lands to get men. Then when they arrived, you bathed yourselves, painted your eyelids, and put on your finest jewels for them. You sat with them on a beautifully embroidered couch and put my incense and my special oil on a table that was spread before you. From your room came the sound of many men carousing. They were lustful men and drunkards from the wilderness, who put bracelets on your wrists and beautiful crowns on your heads. Then I said, ‘If they really want to have sex with old worn-out prostitutes like these, let them!’ And that is what they did. They had sex with Oholah and Oholibah, these shameless prostitutes. But righteous people will judge these sister cities for what they really are—adulterers and murderers. “Now this is what the Sovereign Lord says: Bring an army against them and hand them over to be terrorized and plundered. For their enemies will stone them and kill them with swords. They will butcher their sons and daughters and burn their homes. In this way, I will put an end to lewdness and idolatry in the land, and my judgment will be a warning to all women not to follow your wicked example. You will be fully repaid for all your prostitution—your worship of idols. Yes, you will suffer the full penalty. Then you will know that I am the Sovereign Lord .”’

Ezekiel 23:1-49

Today’s reading continues into the New Testament with Acts 16:

‘Around midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening. Suddenly, there was a massive earthquake, and the prison was shaken to its foundations. All the doors immediately flew open, and the chains of every prisoner fell off! The jailer woke up to see the prison doors wide open. He assumed the prisoners had escaped, so he drew his sword to kill himself. But Paul shouted to him, “Stop! Don’t kill yourself! We are all here!” The jailer called for lights and ran to the dungeon and fell down trembling before Paul and Silas. Then he brought them out and asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” They replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus and you will be saved, along with everyone in your household.” And they shared the word of the Lord with him and with all who lived in his household. Even at that hour of the night, the jailer cared for them and washed their wounds. Then he and everyone in his household were immediately baptized. He brought them into his house and set a meal before them, and he and his entire household rejoiced because they all believed in God. The next morning the city officials sent the police to tell the jailer, “Let those men go!” So the jailer told Paul, “The city officials have said you and Silas are free to leave. Go in peace.” But Paul replied, “They have publicly beaten us without a trial and put us in prison—and we are Roman citizens. So now they want us to leave secretly? Certainly not! Let them come themselves to release us!” When the police reported this, the city officials were alarmed to learn that Paul and Silas were Roman citizens. So they came to the jail and apologized to them. Then they brought them out and begged them to leave the city. When Paul and Silas left the prison, they returned to the home of Lydia. There they met with the believers and encouraged them once more. Then they left town.’

Acts of the Apostles 16:25-40

Today’s reading then continues into Revelation 7:

‘Then I saw four angels standing at the four corners of the earth, holding back the four winds so they did not blow on the earth or the sea, or even on any tree. And I saw another angel coming up from the east, carrying the seal of the living God. And he shouted to those four angels, who had been given power to harm land and sea, “Wait! Don’t harm the land or the sea or the trees until we have placed the seal of God on the foreheads of his servants.” And I heard how many were marked with the seal of God—144,000 were sealed from all the tribes of Israel:’

Revelation 7:1-4

Today’s reading then closes with Psalms 119:

‘Don’t leave me to the mercy of my enemies, for I have done what is just and right. Please guarantee a blessing for me. Don’t let the arrogant oppress me! My eyes strain to see your rescue, to see the truth of your promise fulfilled. I am your servant; deal with me in unfailing love, and teach me your decrees. Give discernment to me, your servant; then I will understand your laws. Lord , it is time for you to act, for these evil people have violated your instructions. Truly, I love your commands more than gold, even the finest gold. Each of your commandments is right. That is why I hate every false way. Your laws are wonderful. No wonder I obey them! The teaching of your word gives light, so even the simple can understand. I pant with expectation, longing for your commands. Come and show me your mercy, as you do for all who love your name. Guide my steps by your word, so I will not be overcome by evil. Ransom me from the oppression of evil people; then I can obey your commandments. Look upon me with love; teach me your decrees. Rivers of tears gush from my eyes because people disobey your instructions. O Lord , you are righteous, and your regulations are fair. Your laws are perfect and completely trustworthy. I am overwhelmed with indignation, for my enemies have disregarded your words. Your promises have been thoroughly tested; that is why I love them so much. I am insignificant and despised, but I don’t forget your commandments. Your justice is eternal, and your instructions are perfectly true. As pressure and stress bear down on me, I find joy in your commands. Your laws are always right; help me to understand them so I may live.’

Psalms 119:121-144

 


So where are you at today? Are you ready for forgiveness and peace? Are you ready for a hope and a future? Are you ready for a transformation where the old is gone and the new has come? Are you ready to being the journey of knowing right from wrong? Then let’s pray together to invite Jesus into your heart and your life so that His peace which surpases all understanding can guide you and comfort you, protect your heart and mind in Christ Jesus. If this is the first time you have prayed to invite Jesus into your heart, leave me a comment so that I can rejocie with the angels in Heaven. If this is a recommitment to Jesus, leave me a comment so that I can rejoice with the angels in Heaven. If you are stil questioning or seeking, don’t go it alone, feel free to leave me a comment so we can discuss it.

Let’s pray:

Do you realize the responsibility that comes with leadership?


Consider the impact of leading people to the top and the responsibility you have and had to get them there, the skills, the trials, the perseverance to get there. Consider the impact of leading people off track and leading to their demise and the responsibility you have and had in getting them there, the lies, the guilt, the threats, the deception to get them there. Consider the consequences of such a leadership decision for you and for them. Are you leading by good example? Are you being a servant leader? Are you pointing people in the right direction? Are you being salt and light as a leader? Are you leading people closer and closer to God? Are you leading people away from behaviors and attitudes that are detrimental to their health? physically and spiritually? Are you providing them with opportunities and avenues to grow and develop into more blessed and accomplished people? Are you listening in order to understand and know what they want or need from you? Are you taking time to discuss where they are at and where they want to go? Will you let your light shine and point them towards God in order that they may see the truth and reject the lies?

Imagine being a leader who leads people into a bottomless pit. Imagine being a leader who leads people to a destination they can never return from with weeping, wailing, and gnashing of teeth. Imagine being a leader responsible for leading people to the pinnacle of success. Imagine being a leader responsible for leading people through the gates of heaven into the presence of God to spend eternity. Imagine what it will mean and it will take for you to be the type of leader who will make a positive impact on those around you. Are you willing and ready to do it?

Do you realize the responsibility you have as the one who lead them? Do you realize the consequences you have as the one who lead them? So choose wisely the type of leader you will be and the direction you will give people.


Today’s reading gets us started with leaders who led people away from God in 2 Kings 16:

‘Ahaz son of Jotham began to rule over Judah in the seventeenth year of King Pekah’s reign in Israel. Ahaz was twenty years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem sixteen years. He did not do what was pleasing in the sight of the Lord his God, as his ancestor David had done. Instead, he followed the example of the kings of Israel, even sacrificing his own son in the fire. In this way, he followed the detestable practices of the pagan nations the Lord had driven from the land ahead of the Israelites. He offered sacrifices and burned incense at the pagan shrines and on the hills and under every green tree. Then King Rezin of Aram and King Pekah of Israel came up to attack Jerusalem. They besieged Ahaz but could not conquer him. At that time the king of Edom recovered the town of Elath for Edom. He drove out the people of Judah and sent Edomites to live there, as they do to this day. King Ahaz sent messengers to King Tiglath-pileser of Assyria with this message: “I am your servant and your vassal. Come up and rescue me from the attacking armies of Aram and Israel.” Then Ahaz took the silver and gold from the Temple of the Lord and the palace treasury and sent it as a payment to the Assyrian king. So the king of Assyria attacked the Aramean capital of Damascus and led its population away as captives, resettling them in Kir. He also killed King Rezin. King Ahaz then went to Damascus to meet with King Tiglath-pileser of Assyria. While he was there, he took special note of the altar. Then he sent a model of the altar to Uriah the priest, along with its design in full detail. Uriah followed the king’s instructions and built an altar just like it, and it was ready before the king returned from Damascus. When the king returned, he inspected the altar and made offerings on it. He presented a burnt offering and a grain offering, he poured out a liquid offering, and he sprinkled the blood of peace offerings on the altar. Then King Ahaz removed the old bronze altar from its place in front of the Lord ’s Temple, between the entrance and the new altar, and placed it on the north side of the new altar. He told Uriah the priest, “Use the new altar for the morning sacrifices of burnt offering, the evening grain offering, the king’s burnt offering and grain offering, and the burnt offerings of all the people, as well as their grain offerings and liquid offerings. Sprinkle the blood from all the burnt offerings and sacrifices on the new altar. The bronze altar will be for my personal use only.” Uriah the priest did just as King Ahaz commanded him. Then the king removed the side panels and basins from the portable water carts. He also removed the great bronze basin called the Sea from the backs of the bronze oxen and placed it on the stone pavement. In deference to the king of Assyria, he also removed the canopy that had been constructed inside the palace for use on the Sabbath day, as well as the king’s outer entrance to the Temple of the Lord . The rest of the events in Ahaz’s reign and everything he did are recorded in The Book of the History of the Kings of Judah. When Ahaz died, he was buried with his ancestors in the City of David. Then his son Hezekiah became the next king.’

2 Kings 16:1-20

Today’s reading then continues into Ezekiel 22:

‘Now this message came to me from the Lord : “Son of man, are you ready to judge Jerusalem? Are you ready to judge this city of murderers? Publicly denounce her detestable sins, and give her this message from the Sovereign Lord : O city of murderers, doomed and damned—city of idols, filthy and foul— you are guilty because of the blood you have shed. You are defiled because of the idols you have made. Your day of destruction has come! You have reached the end of your years. I will make you an object of mockery throughout the world. O infamous city, filled with confusion, you will be mocked by people far and near. “Every leader in Israel who lives within your walls is bent on murder. Fathers and mothers are treated with contempt. Foreigners are forced to pay for protection. Orphans and widows are wronged and oppressed among you. You despise my holy things and violate my Sabbath days of rest. People accuse others falsely and send them to their death. You are filled with idol worshipers and people who do obscene things. Men sleep with their fathers’ wives and force themselves on women who are menstruating. Within your walls live men who commit adultery with their neighbors’ wives, who defile their daughters-in-law, or who rape their own sisters. There are hired murderers, loan racketeers, and extortioners everywhere. They never even think of me and my commands, says the Sovereign Lord . “But now I clap my hands in indignation over your dishonest gain and bloodshed. How strong and courageous will you be in my day of reckoning? I, the Lord , have spoken, and I will do what I said. I will scatter you among the nations and purge you of your wickedness. And when I have been dishonored among the nations because of you, you will know that I am the Lord .” Then this message came to me from the Lord : “Son of man, the people of Israel are the worthless slag that remains after silver is smelted. They are the dross that is left over—a useless mixture of copper, tin, iron, and lead. So tell them, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Because you are all worthless slag, I will bring you to my crucible in Jerusalem. Just as silver, copper, iron, lead, and tin are melted down in a furnace, I will melt you down in the heat of my fury. I will gather you together and blow the fire of my anger upon you, and you will melt like silver in fierce heat. Then you will know that I, the Lord , have poured out my fury on you.’” Again a message came to me from the Lord : “Son of man, give the people of Israel this message: In the day of my indignation, you will be like a polluted land, a land without rain. Your princes plot conspiracies just as lions stalk their prey. They devour innocent people, seizing treasures and extorting wealth. They make many widows in the land. Your priests have violated my instructions and defiled my holy things. They make no distinction between what is holy and what is not. And they do not teach my people the difference between what is ceremonially clean and unclean. They disregard my Sabbath days so that I am dishonored among them. Your leaders are like wolves who tear apart their victims. They actually destroy people’s lives for money! And your prophets cover up for them by announcing false visions and making lying predictions. They say, ‘My message is from the Sovereign Lord ,’ when the Lord hasn’t spoken a single word to them. Even common people oppress the poor, rob the needy, and deprive foreigners of justice. “I looked for someone who might rebuild the wall of righteousness that guards the land. I searched for someone to stand in the gap in the wall so I wouldn’t have to destroy the land, but I found no one. So now I will pour out my fury on them, consuming them with the fire of my anger. I will heap on their heads the full penalty for all their sins. I, the Sovereign Lord , have spoken!”’

Ezekiel 22:1-31

Today’s reading then brings us into the New Testament starting with Acts 16:

‘Next Paul and Silas traveled through the area of Phrygia and Galatia, because the Holy Spirit had prevented them from preaching the word in the province of Asia at that time. Then coming to the borders of Mysia, they headed north for the province of Bithynia, but again the Spirit of Jesus did not allow them to go there. So instead, they went on through Mysia to the seaport of Troas. That night Paul had a vision: A man from Macedonia in northern Greece was standing there, pleading with him, “Come over to Macedonia and help us!” So we decided to leave for Macedonia at once, having concluded that God was calling us to preach the Good News there. We boarded a boat at Troas and sailed straight across to the island of Samothrace, and the next day we landed at Neapolis. From there we reached Philippi, a major city of that district of Macedonia and a Roman colony. And we stayed there several days. On the Sabbath we went a little way outside the city to a riverbank, where we thought people would be meeting for prayer, and we sat down to speak with some women who had gathered there. One of them was Lydia from Thyatira, a merchant of expensive purple cloth, who worshiped God. As she listened to us, the Lord opened her heart, and she accepted what Paul was saying. She and her household were baptized, and she asked us to be her guests. “If you agree that I am a true believer in the Lord,” she said, “come and stay at my home.” And she urged us until we agreed. One day as we were going down to the place of prayer, we met a slave girl who had a spirit that enabled her to tell the future. She earned a lot of money for her masters by telling fortunes. She followed Paul and the rest of us, shouting, “These men are servants of the Most High God, and they have come to tell you how to be saved.” This went on day after day until Paul got so exasperated that he turned and said to the demon within her, “I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her.” And instantly it left her. Her masters’ hopes of wealth were now shattered, so they grabbed Paul and Silas and dragged them before the authorities at the marketplace. “The whole city is in an uproar because of these Jews!” they shouted to the city officials. “They are teaching customs that are illegal for us Romans to practice.” A mob quickly formed against Paul and Silas, and the city officials ordered them stripped and beaten with wooden rods. They were severely beaten, and then they were thrown into prison. The jailer was ordered to make sure they didn’t escape. So the jailer put them into the inner dungeon and clamped their feet in the stocks.’

Acts of the Apostles 16:6-24

Today’s reading continues into Revelation 6:

‘When the Lamb broke the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of all who had been martyred for the word of God and for being faithful in their testimony. They shouted to the Lord and said, “O Sovereign Lord, holy and true, how long before you judge the people who belong to this world and avenge our blood for what they have done to us?” Then a white robe was given to each of them. And they were told to rest a little longer until the full number of their brothers and sisters —their fellow servants of Jesus who were to be martyred—had joined them. I watched as the Lamb broke the sixth seal, and there was a great earthquake. The sun became as dark as black cloth, and the moon became as red as blood. Then the stars of the sky fell to the earth like green figs falling from a tree shaken by a strong wind. The sky was rolled up like a scroll, and all of the mountains and islands were moved from their places. Then everyone—the kings of the earth, the rulers, the generals, the wealthy, the powerful, and every slave and free person—all hid themselves in the caves and among the rocks of the mountains. And they cried to the mountains and the rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the face of the one who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb. For the great day of their wrath has come, and who is able to survive?”’

Revelation 6:9-17

Today’s reading then closes with Psalms 119:

‘Oh, how I love your instructions! I think about them all day long. Your commands make me wiser than my enemies, for they are my constant guide. Yes, I have more insight than my teachers, for I am always thinking of your laws. I am even wiser than my elders, for I have kept your commandments. I have refused to walk on any evil path, so that I may remain obedient to your word. I haven’t turned away from your regulations, for you have taught me well. How sweet your words taste to me; they are sweeter than honey. Your commandments give me understanding; no wonder I hate every false way of life. Your word is a lamp to guide my feet and a light for my path. I’ve promised it once, and I’ll promise it again: I will obey your righteous regulations. I have suffered much, O Lord ; restore my life again as you promised. Lord , accept my offering of praise, and teach me your regulations. My life constantly hangs in the balance, but I will not stop obeying your instructions. The wicked have set their traps for me, but I will not turn from your commandments. Your laws are my treasure; they are my heart’s delight. I am determined to keep your decrees to the very end. I hate those with divided loyalties, but I love your instructions. You are my refuge and my shield; your word is my source of hope. Get out of my life, you evil-minded people, for I intend to obey the commands of my God. Lord , sustain me as you promised, that I may live! Do not let my hope be crushed. Sustain me, and I will be rescued; then I will meditate continually on your decrees. But you have rejected all who stray from your decrees. They are only fooling themselves. You skim off the wicked of the earth like scum; no wonder I love to obey your laws! I tremble in fear of you; I stand in awe of your regulations.’

Psalms 119:97-120

So where are you at today? Are you ready for forgiveness and peace? Are you ready for a hope and a future? Are you ready for a transformation where the old is gone and the new has come? Are you ready to being the journey of knowing right from wrong? Then let’s pray together to invite Jesus into your heart and your life so that His peace which surpases all understanding can guide you and comfort you, protect your heart and mind in Christ Jesus. If this is the first time you have prayed to invite Jesus into your heart, leave me a comment so that I can rejocie with the angels in Heaven. If this is a recommitment to Jesus, leave me a comment so that I can rejoice with the angels in Heaven. If you are stil questioning or seeking, don’t go it alone, feel free to leave me a comment so we can discuss it.

Let’s pray:

Are you walking in the presence of God?


Do you think you need to go somewhere for that to happen? Do you think you have to do something for that to happen? Do you think you have to think a certain way for it to happen?

How about you get to make a choice and decide if you want to invite Jesus into your life and accept His gift of eternal life? How about you get to receive the gift of the Holy Spirit so that you can always be walking in the presence of God? So it isn’t something you can do in your own power or somewhere you need to go. We just need to make a decision to receive Jesus into our hearts. We become new creations. The Holy Spirit moves into our hearts and now we are in the presence of God always as He is omnipresent. Imagine a time when the Holy Spirit would only be with people for a season or be on people for a moment. Imagine the incredible gift of God which is more than we could ever ask or imagine. Imagine the incredible gift of God through Jesus Christ our Lord of eternal life with God. Imagine a life transformed through an encounter with Jesus.

Have you met Jesus and invited Him into your life so that you can walk out every day in relationship with Him? Have you received the Holy Spirit so that You can be walking in God’s presence all the time? Normally I put the opportunity towards the end of my post and after today’s bible reading but it feels like we should just do it now and then we can take that with us as we step into today’s reading.

If you haven’t and you want to let’s pray together:

If you pray this please leave a comment so I can pray with and over you in this incredible decision.

Today’s reading gets us started with 1 Kings 8:1-53:

‘Solomon then summoned to Jerusalem the elders of Israel and all the heads of the tribes—the leaders of the ancestral families of the Israelites. They were to bring the Ark of the Lord ’s Covenant to the Temple from its location in the City of David, also known as Zion. So all the men of Israel assembled before King Solomon at the annual Festival of Shelters, which is held in early autumn in the month of Ethanim. When all the elders of Israel arrived, the priests picked up the Ark. The priests and Levites brought up the Ark of the Lord along with the special tent and all the sacred items that had been in it. There, before the Ark, King Solomon and the entire community of Israel sacrificed so many sheep, goats, and cattle that no one could keep count! Then the priests carried the Ark of the Lord ’s Covenant into the inner sanctuary of the Temple—the Most Holy Place—and placed it beneath the wings of the cherubim. The cherubim spread their wings over the Ark, forming a canopy over the Ark and its carrying poles. These poles were so long that their ends could be seen from the Holy Place, which is in front of the Most Holy Place, but not from the outside. They are still there to this day. Nothing was in the Ark except the two stone tablets that Moses had placed in it at Mount Sinai, where the Lord made a covenant with the people of Israel when they left the land of Egypt. When the priests came out of the Holy Place, a thick cloud filled the Temple of the Lord . The priests could not continue their service because of the cloud, for the glorious presence of the Lord filled the Temple of the Lord . Then Solomon prayed, “O Lord , you have said that you would live in a thick cloud of darkness. Now I have built a glorious Temple for you, a place where you can live forever! ” Then the king turned around to the entire community of Israel standing before him and gave this blessing: “Praise the Lord , the God of Israel, who has kept the promise he made to my father, David. For he told my father, ‘From the day I brought my people Israel out of Egypt, I have never chosen a city among any of the tribes of Israel as the place where a Temple should be built to honor my name. But I have chosen David to be king over my people Israel.’” Then Solomon said, “My father, David, wanted to build this Temple to honor the name of the Lord , the God of Israel. But the Lord told him, ‘You wanted to build the Temple to honor my name. Your intention is good, but you are not the one to do it. One of your own sons will build the Temple to honor me.’ “And now the Lord has fulfilled the promise he made, for I have become king in my father’s place, and now I sit on the throne of Israel, just as the Lord promised. I have built this Temple to honor the name of the Lord , the God of Israel. And I have prepared a place there for the Ark, which contains the covenant that the Lord made with our ancestors when he brought them out of Egypt.” Then Solomon stood before the altar of the Lord in front of the entire community of Israel. He lifted his hands toward heaven, and he prayed, “O Lord , God of Israel, there is no God like you in all of heaven above or on the earth below. You keep your covenant and show unfailing love to all who walk before you in wholehearted devotion. You have kept your promise to your servant David, my father. You made that promise with your own mouth, and with your own hands you have fulfilled it today. “And now, O Lord , God of Israel, carry out the additional promise you made to your servant David, my father. For you said to him, ‘If your descendants guard their behavior and faithfully follow me as you have done, one of them will always sit on the throne of Israel.’ Now, O God of Israel, fulfill this promise to your servant David, my father. “But will God really live on earth? Why, even the highest heavens cannot contain you. How much less this Temple I have built! Nevertheless, listen to my prayer and my plea, O Lord my God. Hear the cry and the prayer that your servant is making to you today. May you watch over this Temple night and day, this place where you have said, ‘My name will be there.’ May you always hear the prayers I make toward this place. May you hear the humble and earnest requests from me and your people Israel when we pray toward this place. Yes, hear us from heaven where you live, and when you hear, forgive. “If someone wrongs another person and is required to take an oath of innocence in front of your altar in this Temple, then hear from heaven and judge between your servants—the accuser and the accused. Punish the guilty as they deserve. Acquit the innocent because of their innocence. “If your people Israel are defeated by their enemies because they have sinned against you, and if they turn to you and acknowledge your name and pray to you here in this Temple, then hear from heaven and forgive the sin of your people Israel and return them to this land you gave their ancestors. “If the skies are shut up and there is no rain because your people have sinned against you, and if they pray toward this Temple and acknowledge your name and turn from their sins because you have punished them, then hear from heaven and forgive the sins of your servants, your people Israel. Teach them to follow the right path, and send rain on your land that you have given to your people as their special possession. “If there is a famine in the land or a plague or crop disease or attacks of locusts or caterpillars, or if your people’s enemies are in the land besieging their towns—whatever disaster or disease there is— and if your people Israel pray about their troubles, raising their hands toward this Temple, then hear from heaven where you live, and forgive. Give your people what their actions deserve, for you alone know each human heart. Then they will fear you as long as they live in the land you gave to our ancestors. “In the future, foreigners who do not belong to your people Israel will hear of you. They will come from distant lands because of your name, for they will hear of your great name and your strong hand and your powerful arm. And when they pray toward this Temple, then hear from heaven where you live, and grant what they ask of you. In this way, all the people of the earth will come to know and fear you, just as your own people Israel do. They, too, will know that this Temple I have built honors your name. “If your people go out where you send them to fight their enemies, and if they pray to the Lord by turning toward this city you have chosen and toward this Temple I have built to honor your name, then hear their prayers from heaven and uphold their cause. “If they sin against you—and who has never sinned?—you might become angry with them and let their enemies conquer them and take them captive to their land far away or near. But in that land of exile, they might turn to you in repentance and pray, ‘We have sinned, done evil, and acted wickedly.’ If they turn to you with their whole heart and soul in the land of their enemies and pray toward the land you gave to their ancestors—toward this city you have chosen, and toward this Temple I have built to honor your name— then hear their prayers and their petition from heaven where you live, and uphold their cause. Forgive your people who have sinned against you. Forgive all the offenses they have committed against you. Make their captors merciful to them, for they are your people—your special possession—whom you brought out of the iron-smelting furnace of Egypt. “May your eyes be open to my requests and to the requests of your people Israel. May you hear and answer them whenever they cry out to you. For when you brought our ancestors out of Egypt, O Sovereign Lord , you told your servant Moses that you had set Israel apart from all the nations of the earth to be your own special possession.”’

1 Kings 8:1-53

‘“At the time of those events,” says the Lord , “when I restore the prosperity of Judah and Jerusalem, I will gather the armies of the world into the valley of Jehoshaphat. There I will judge them for harming my people, my special possession, for scattering my people among the nations, and for dividing up my land. They threw dice to decide which of my people would be their slaves. They traded boys to obtain prostitutes and sold girls for enough wine to get drunk. “What do you have against me, Tyre and Sidon and you cities of Philistia? Are you trying to take revenge on me? If you are, then watch out! I will strike swiftly and pay you back for everything you have done. You have taken my silver and gold and all my precious treasures, and have carried them off to your pagan temples. You have sold the people of Judah and Jerusalem to the Greeks, so they could take them far from their homeland. “But I will bring them back from all the places to which you sold them, and I will pay you back for everything you have done. I will sell your sons and daughters to the people of Judah, and they will sell them to the people of Arabia, a nation far away. I, the Lord , have spoken!” Say to the nations far and wide: “Get ready for war! Call out your best warriors. Let all your fighting men advance for the attack. Hammer your plowshares into swords and your pruning hooks into spears. Train even your weaklings to be warriors. Come quickly, all you nations everywhere. Gather together in the valley.” And now, O Lord , call out your warriors! “Let the nations be called to arms. Let them march to the valley of Jehoshaphat. There I, the Lord , will sit to pronounce judgment on them all. Swing the sickle, for the harvest is ripe. Come, tread the grapes, for the winepress is full. The storage vats are overflowing with the wickedness of these people.” Thousands upon thousands are waiting in the valley of decision. There the day of the Lord will soon arrive. The sun and moon will grow dark, and the stars will no longer shine. The Lord ’s voice will roar from Zion and thunder from Jerusalem, and the heavens and the earth will shake. But the Lord will be a refuge for his people, a strong fortress for the people of Israel. “Then you will know that I, the Lord your God, live in Zion, my holy mountain. Jerusalem will be holy forever, and foreign armies will never conquer her again. In that day the mountains will drip with sweet wine, and the hills will flow with milk. Water will fill the streambeds of Judah, and a fountain will burst forth from the Lord ’s Temple, watering the arid valley of acacias. But Egypt will become a wasteland and Edom will become a wilderness, because they attacked the people of Judah and killed innocent people in their land. “But Judah will be filled with people forever, and Jerusalem will endure through all generations. I will pardon my people’s crimes, which I have not yet pardoned; and I, the Lord , will make my home in Jerusalem with my people.”’

Joel 3

‘The members of the council were amazed when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, for they could see that they were ordinary men with no special training in the Scriptures. They also recognized them as men who had been with Jesus. But since they could see the man who had been healed standing right there among them, there was nothing the council could say. So they ordered Peter and John out of the council chamber and conferred among themselves. “What should we do with these men?” they asked each other. “We can’t deny that they have performed a miraculous sign, and everybody in Jerusalem knows about it. But to keep them from spreading their propaganda any further, we must warn them not to speak to anyone in Jesus’ name again.” So they called the apostles back in and commanded them never again to speak or teach in the name of Jesus. But Peter and John replied, “Do you think God wants us to obey you rather than him? We cannot stop telling about everything we have seen and heard.” The council then threatened them further, but they finally let them go because they didn’t know how to punish them without starting a riot. For everyone was praising God for this miraculous sign—the healing of a man who had been lame for more than forty years.’

Acts 4:13-22

‘And so, dear friends, while you are waiting for these things to happen, make every effort to be found living peaceful lives that are pure and blameless in his sight. And remember, our Lord’s patience gives people time to be saved. This is what our beloved brother Paul also wrote to you with the wisdom God gave him— speaking of these things in all of his letters. Some of his comments are hard to understand, and those who are ignorant and unstable have twisted his letters to mean something quite different, just as they do with other parts of Scripture. And this will result in their destruction. You already know these things, dear friends. So be on guard; then you will not be carried away by the errors of these wicked people and lose your own secure footing. Rather, you must grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. All glory to him, both now and forever! Amen.’

2 Peter 3:14-18

‘The Lord is king! He is robed in majesty. Indeed, the Lord is robed in majesty and armed with strength. The world stands firm and cannot be shaken. Your throne, O Lord , has stood from time immemorial. You yourself are from the everlasting past. The floods have risen up, O Lord . The floods have roared like thunder; the floods have lifted their pounding waves. But mightier than the violent raging of the seas, mightier than the breakers on the shore— the Lord above is mightier than these! Your royal laws cannot be changed. Your reign, O Lord , is holy forever and ever.’

Psalms 93

In today’s reading we read about the Ark of the Covenant which represented the presence of God and why people went to the temple to meet with God. It was where the priests would go to help bring forgiveness through offerings of blood on the altar. Today we have a priest who is sitting on a thrown at the right hand of God the Father interceding for you and for me. This priest, Jesus Christ paid the price once for all sins, every mistake, every miss so that when we confess our sins to Him, He is faithful and just to forgive our sins and cleanse us of all unrighteousness. Asking Jesus into our hearts is the start of our journey with God so that He can help develop us to become more and more like Jesus. We will face trials of many kinds but thanks to Jesus we can face with them with joy because we know that the testing of our faith develops perseverance and when we allow perseverance to finish its work, it allows us to become mature and complete, not lacking anything. It doesn’t mean we won’t have troubles in this world, it just means that we can take heart when they come because we know that Jesus has overcome the world.

So in case you didn’t choose to receive Jesus earlier, let’s take another moment for you to be able to consider making today your day of transformation, a day where the old is gone and the new has come.

Let’s pray:

If you pray this please leave a comment so I can pray with and over you in this incredible decision.

Do you need prayer or want prayer? Leave me a comment or send me an email at prayer@from2005toeternity.com