Category Archives: Morning Bible Reading…

Are you facing giants today?


At work? At school? On the field? On the road? I remember how my mom used to say “the bigger they are the harder they fall”. Don’t be afraid of giants!

It’s kind of like being in the midst of a storm, where does your focus go? Where should it go?

Last night before rehearsal the topic of Peter getting out of the boat and walking on water and the importance of keeping our eyes on Jesus. We can’t focus on the waves. Wave can’t focus on the storm. We can’t focus on the giants. We need to keep our focus on Jesus and what He calls us to be and to do. We need to remember all He has done and then move forward in all that He is doing and is about to do as He goes before us to prepare the good work He has for us to do!

Today’s reading kicks off on the topic of giants…

Who Brings Down Giants?

1“Hear, O Israel! You are about to cross over the Jordan today, to go in to dispossess nations greater and mightier than yourself—cities great and fortified up to the heavens. 2The people are great and tall, sons of the Anakim. You know them, and you yourselves have heard, “Who can stand before the sons of Anak?” 3But you will know today that Adonai your God is the One who is crossing over before you as a devouring fire. He will destroy them, and He will bring them down before you, so that you may drive them out and make them perish quickly, as Adonai has promised you. 4“After Adonai your God has driven them out from before you, do not say in your heart, ‘It is because of my righteousness that Adonai has brought me in to possess this land.’ It is because of the wickedness of these nations that Adonai is driving them out from before you. 5It is not by your righteousness or the uprightness of your heart that you are going in to possess their land. Rather, because of the wickedness of these nations, Adonai your God is driving them out from before you, and in order to keep the word Adonai swore to your fathers—to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob. 6So you should understand that it is not because of your righteousness that Adonai your God is giving you this good land to possess—for you are a stiff-necked people.

What Happened to the Tablets?

7“Remember, never forget, how you provoked Adonai your God to wrath in the wilderness. From the day you left the land of Egypt until you came to this place, you have been rebellious against Adonai. 8At Horeb you provoked Adonai to wrath, and Adonai was angry with you—enough to destroy you. 9When I went up the mountain to receive the tablets of stone, the tablets of the covenant that Adonai cut with you, I stayed on the mountain 40 days and 40 nights; I did not eat bread or drink water. 10Adonai gave me the two tablets of stone written by the finger of God. Moreover, on them were all the words that Adonai had spoken with you on the mountain from the midst of the fire, on the day of the assembly. 11“Now at the end of 40 days and 40 nights, Adonai gave me the two tablets of stone—the tablets of the covenant. 12Adonai said to me, ‘Get up! Go quickly down from here, for your people whom you brought out from Egypt have acted corruptly. They have quickly turned from the way I commanded them; they have made a molten image for themselves.’ 13Furthermore Adonai spoke to me saying, ‘I have seen this people, and it is indeed a stiff-necked people. 14Leave Me alone, so that I may destroy them and blot out their name from under the heavens. Then I will make you into a nation mightier and greater than they.’ 15“So I turned and came down from the mountain while the mountain was burning with fire. Now the two tablets of the covenant were in my two hands. 16When I looked, you had indeed sinned against Adonai your God—you had made yourselves a metal calf. So quickly you had turned aside from the way Adonai had commanded you! 17So I took hold of the two tablets, threw them out of my two hands, and smashed them before your eyes. 18“Then I fell down before Adonai like the first time, for 40 days and 40 nights. I did not eat bread or drink water—because of all your sin that you committed, doing evil in Adonai’s sight, provoking Him to anger. 19For I was afraid of the fierce wrath and fury which Adonai bore toward you—to destroy you. But Adonai listened to me that time also. 20Adonai was angry enough with Aaron to destroy him, so I prayed for Aaron also at the same time. 21I took your sin—the calf you had made—and burned it in the fire. I crushed it, grinding it up so well that it was as fine as dust, and I threw its dust into the wadi flowing down from the mountain. 22“Again at Taberah and Massah and Kibroth-hattaavah, you provoked Adonai to wrath. 23When Adonai sent you from Kadesh-barnea, saying, ‘Go up and possess the land I have given you,’ then you rebelled against the commandment of Adonai your God and didn’t believe Him or listen to His voice. 24You have been rebellious against Adonai from the day that I knew you. 25“So I threw myself down before Adonai those 40 days and 40 nights, because Adonai had said He would destroy you. 26I prayed to Adonai and said, ‘O Lord, Adonai, do not destroy Your people—Your inheritance that You have redeemed through Your greatness and brought out from Egypt with a mighty hand. 27Remember Your servants, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Pay no attention to the stubbornness of this people or to their wickedness or their sin. 28Otherwise the land from which You brought us out may say, “Because Adonai was not able to bring them into the land that He spoke of to them, and because He hated them, He has brought them out to kill them in the wilderness.” 29Yet they are Your people—Your inheritance that You brought out by Your great power and Your outstretched arm.’

–from Deuteronomy 9

Don’t turn away from God! Don’t walk away! Don’t complain or grumble! Build up your relationship with Him! Build up your hope and trust in Him! Be willing to wait on Him! Be willing to listen to what He says to you! Be willing to be obedient to His instruction and directions!

Just because you mess up, don’t lose hope! Turn back to Him! He is the God of the second chances, third chances, fourth changes…. So don’t beat yourself up too much but rather turn back to God and ask Him for forgiveness and wisdom into how to proceed! He doesn’t setup boundaries to keep you from having fun, but rather to protect you. His plans for you are good! He is LOVE! So let’s give Him our hearts so that He can move in and work in and through us!

We hear about the second chances when God produced the second set of tablets…

Two New Tablets

1“At that time Adonai said to me, ‘Carve for yourself two tablets of stone like the first ones and come up to Me on the mountain. Make yourself an ark of wood. 2I will write on the tablets the words that were on the first tablets that you smashed, and you are to put them in the ark.’ 3“So I made an ark of acacia wood, cut two tablets of stone like the first ones, and went up the mountain with the two tablets in my hand. 4Like the first inscription, Adonai wrote on the tablets the Ten Words He had spoken to you on the mountain from the midst of the fire on the day of the assembly, then gave them to me. 5Then I turned and came down from the mountain and put the tablets in the ark I had made—and there they are, just as Adonai commanded me. 6“(Bnei-Yisrael traveled from the wells of the sons of Jaakan to Moserah—there Aaron died and was buried, and his son Eleazar served as kohen in his place. 7From there they journeyed to Gudgod, and from Gudgod to Jotbah—a land of wadis flowing with water. 8At that time Adonai set the tribe of Levi apart to carry the Ark of the Covenant of Adonai, to stand before Adonai to serve Him and to pronounce blessings in His Name—as is the case to this day. 9Therefore Levi has no portion or inheritance with his brothers—Adonai is his inheritance, just as Adonai your God had promised about him.) 10“I stayed on the mountain like the first time—40 days and 40 nights. Adonai listened to me that time also and was not willing to destroy you. 11Adonai said to me, ‘Rise up, go, journey ahead of the people so that they may go in and possess the land that I swore to their fathers to give to them.’ 12“So now, O Israel, what does Adonai your God require of you, but to fear Adonai your God, to walk in all His ways and love Him, and to serve Adonai your God with all your heart and with all your soul, 13to keep the mitzvot of Adonai and His statutes that I am commanding you today, for your own good? 14Behold, to Adonai your God belong the heavens and the highest of heavens, the earth and all that is in it. 15Only on your fathers did Adonai set His affection to love them, and He chose their descendants after them—you—from all the peoples, as is the case this day.

Circumcise Your Hearts

16“Circumcise the foreskin of your heart therefore, and do not be stiff-necked anymore. 17For Adonai your God is God of gods and Lord of lords —the great, mighty and awesome God, who does not show partiality or take a bribe. 18He enacts justice for the orphan and widow, and loves the outsider, giving him food and clothing. 19Therefore love the outsider, for you were outsiders in the land of Egypt. 20Adonai your God you will fear—Him will you serve. To Him will you cling, and by His Name will you swear. 21He is your praise and He is your God, who has done for you these great and awesome things that your eyes have seen. 22Your fathers went down to Egypt with 70 persons, and now Adonai your God has made you like the stars of the heavens in number.

–from Deuteronomy 10

We shouldn’t hide from God! In reality we can’t anyways! And when and while we build up our relationship with Him, He will walk with us and talk with us and lead us on our way! Let’s not grow weary in doing good works! Let’s turn to God when we are being attacked! Let’s turn to God when we don’t know what to do! Let’s walk with Him through the mountain top highs as well as the low times in the valleys of life!

Hide Not Your Face from Me

1A psalm of David. Hear my prayer, Adonai, give ear to my petitions. In Your faithfulness and Your righteousness, answer me! 2Do not bring Your servant into judgment, for in Your eyes no one living is righteous. 3For an enemy pursues my soul. He crushes my life down to the ground. He makes me dwell in darkness, like those long dead. 4So my spirit grows faint within me. My heart is shocked within me. 5I remember the days of old. I meditate on all You have done. I ponder the work of Your hands. 6I spread forth my hands to You. My soul longs for You as a parched land. Selah 7Answer me speedily, Adonai— my spirit fails. Hide not Your face from me, lest I become like those who go down into the Pit. 8Make me hear Your lovingkindness in the morning, for in You I trust. Show me the way I should go, for to You I lift up my soul. 9Deliver me from my enemies, Adonai. I hide myself in You. 10Teach me to do Your will, for You are my God. Let Your good Ruach lead me on level ground. 11For Your Name’s sake, Adonai, revive me. In Your justice bring my soul out of trouble. 12In Your mercy cut off my enemies and destroy all who harass my soul, for I am Your servant.

–from Psalms 143

Let’s not be self-centered! Let’s not be selfish! Let’s be generous! Let’s be givers! Let’s share what God has given us! I remember a story from camp growing up where there were warm fuzzies and cold prickelies. And someone had told one of the people who had been giving out of warm fuzzies that if they kept doing that they could run out. Out of fear when others would give them warm fuzzies, they started to give them cold prickelies back. Eventually things got really bad but the truth set everyone free. As long as we are giving love, we will never run out! So we need to be living in love and generously sharing love with those God has brought into your life! Be willing to give grace to others as God provides and has exemplified grace to you! There is a cost, but it is totally worth it.

Eagerness to Give

1Now we make known to you, brothers and sisters, the grace God has given to Messiah’s communities in Macedonia— 2that in much testing by affliction, the abundance of their joy and their extreme poverty overflowed in a wealth of generosity on their part. 3For I testify that according to their ability, and even beyond their ability, they gave of their own free will— 4begging us with much urging for the favor of sharing in the relief of the kedoshim. 5Moreover, it was not just as we had hoped, but they gave of themselves first to the Lord and then to us in keeping with God’s will. 6So we urged Titus that, just as he had made a start before, so he should also complete this gracious service for you. 7But as you excel in everything—in faith and speech and knowledge and all diligence, and in your love for us—also excel in this grace. 8I am saying this not as a command, but I am trying to prove by the diligence of others the genuineness of your love as well. 9For you know the grace of our Lord Yeshua the Messiah—that even though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, so that through His poverty you might become rich. 10Now I give my opinion in this matter, that it is a credit to you that a year ago you were the first to start—not only to do but even to be willing. 11But now finish doing it, so that just as there was eagerness to be willing, so also to finish it, out of what you have. 12For if the eagerness is present, the gift is acceptable according to what a person has, not according to what he doesn’t have. 13For it is not relief for others and hardship for you, but as a matter of equality. 14Your abundance at this present time meets their need, so that their abundance may also meet your need—so that there may be equality. 15As it is written, “He who gathered much did not have too much, and he who gathered little did not have too little.”

An Offering by Special Delivery

16But thanks be to God, who put into the heart of Titus the same devotion for you. 17For indeed he not only accepted our appeal, but went to you with eagerness and on his own initiative. 18We are sending along with him the brother whose fame in connection with the Good News has spread throughout all of Messiah’s communities. 19Not only that, but he has also been appointed by the communities as our travel companion with this gracious gift, which is administered by us for the glory of the Lord Himself and to show our eagerness to help. 20We are taking this precaution, so that no one will blame us in regard to the way we administer this generous gift. 21We have regard for what is honorable—not only before the Lord, but also before people. 22Also with them we are sending our brother whom we have tested many times and found to be diligent in many things, but now even more diligent because of his great confidence in you. 23As for Titus, he is my partner and fellow worker among you; as for our brothers, they are the emissaries of the communities, a glory to Messiah. 24Therefore, before Messiah’s communities show them the proof of your love and of our boasting about you.

–from 2 Corinthians 8

We are to live in love! God’s plan is perfect! Are you willing to do it His way rather than trying to mess with it? Are you willing to go His way rather than try to switch it up? Are you about the truth or trickery? Are you about love? Are you about hope? Are you about forgiveness? There is a cost but in the end your return on investment is totally worth it.

Abide in Marriage

1Then getting up from there, Yeshua goes to the region of Judea beyond the Jordan. Again crowds gather around Him, and, as was His custom, He began to teach them once more. 2Pharisees came up, and to test Him they began asking, “Is it permitted for a man to divorce his wife?” 3And He replied to them, “What did Moses command you?” 4The Pharisees said, “Moses permitted a man to write a bill of divorce and to put her away.” 5But Yeshua said to them, “Because of your hardness of heart he wrote you this commandment! 6But from the beginning of creation, God ‘made them male and female. 7For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, 8and the two shall become one flesh.’ So they are no longer two, but one flesh. 9Therefore what God has joined together, let no man separate!” 10In the house, the disciples began questioning Him about this again. 11And He said to them, “Whoever divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery against her. 12And if she divorces her husband and marries another, she is committing adultery.”

Let the Little Ones Come!

13Now people were bringing little children to Yeshua so He might touch them, but the disciples rebuked those who brought them. 14But when Yeshua saw this, He got angry. He told them, “Let the little children come to Me! Do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. 15Amen, I tell you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it!” 16And He took them in His arms and began blessing them, laying His hands on them.

The Cost of Discipleship

17As Yeshua was setting out on His way, a man ran up to Him, fell on his knees before Him, and asked, “Good Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” 18“Why do you call Me good?” Yeshua said to him. “No one is good except One—that is God. 19You know the commandments, ‘Do not murder, do not commit adultery, do not steal, do not give false testimony,’ do not cheat, ‘honor your father and mother.’” 20The man responded, “Teacher, all these I have kept since my youth!” 21Looking at him, Yeshua loved him and said, “One thing you lack. Go, sell as much as you have, and give to the poor; and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow Me.” 22But at this statement, the man became sad and went away grieving, for he had much property. 23Then looking around, Yeshua says to His disciples, “How hard it will be for the rich to enter the kingdom of God!” 24The disciples were amazed at His words. But Yeshua answers again and says to them, “Children, how hard it is to enter the kingdom of God! 25It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” 26The disciples were even more astonished, saying among themselves, “Then who can be saved?” 27Looking at them, Yeshua said, “With men it is impossible, but not with God. For all things are possible with God!” 28Peter began to say to Him, “Look, we’ve left everything to follow You!” 29“Amen, I tell you,” Yeshua replied, “there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or property, for My sake and for the sake of the Good News, 30who will not receive a hundred times as much now in this time, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and property, along with persecutions; and in the olam ha-ba , eternal life. 31But many who are first will be last, and the last first.”

Death and Resurrection Revealed

32They were on the way going up to Jerusalem, and Yeshua was going ahead of them. And they were amazed, while those who followed were fearful. Again Yeshua took the Twelve aside and began to tell them what was going to happen to Him. 33He said, “Look, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be handed over to the ruling kohanim and the Torah scholars. They will condemn Him to death and hand Him over to the Gentiles. 34They will mock Him and spit on Him, scourge Him and kill Him. Yet after three days, He will rise again!” 35Then Jacob and John, the sons of Zebedee, come up to Him, saying, “Teacher, we want You to do for us whatever we ask of You.” 36And He said to them, “What do you want Me to do for you?” 37They said to Him, “Let us sit, one on Your right and one on Your left, in Your glory.” 38But Yeshua answered them, “You don’t know what you’re asking! Are you able to drink the cup I drink, or endure the immersion I must endure?” 39They said to Him, “We are able.” And Yeshua said to them, “You will drink the cup I drink, and you will endure the immersion I must endure. 40But to sit on My right or left is not Mine to grant—it is for those for whom it has been prepared.” 41Now when the ten heard, they started to get angry with Jacob and John. 42And calling them over, Yeshua said to them, “You know those recognized as rulers of the nations lord it over them, and their great ones play the tyrant over them. 43Yet it is not this way among you. But whoever wants to be great among you shall be your servant, 44and whoever wants to be first among you shall be slave of all. 45For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for many.”

Ben-David Heals the Blind

46Then they came to Jericho. Now as Yeshua was leaving Jericho with His disciples and a large crowd, Bartimaeus the son of Timaeus, a blind beggar, was sitting by the roadside. 47When he heard that it was Yeshua of Natzeret, he began to cry out, “Ben-David, Yeshua! Have mercy on me!” 48Many were warning him to be quiet; but he kept crying out all the more, “Ben-David, have mercy on me!” 49Yeshua stopped and said, “Call him over.” So they call the blind man, saying, “Take heart! Get up, He’s calling you!” 50Throwing off his cloak, he jumped up and came to Yeshua. 51And answering him, Yeshua said, “What do you want Me to do for you?” The blind man said, “Rabboni, I want to see again!” 52Yeshua said to him, “Go! Your faith has made you well.” Instantly he regained his sight and began following Yeshua down the road.

–from Mark 10

 

 

 

There is a reason and a purpose why God asks us to do things a certain way.


Ever noticed that God may ask us to do things one way and a similar event happens and tells us to do it differently? He know what we need to do before we get there! He knows what He wants us to learn through it! He knows what it is going to take to accomplish His will. So when we are going to do something, we shouldn’t assume we can just do it the way we always have, but rather we need to turn to Him and ask Him for wisdom, discernment, and guidance so that we can do more than just get it done, but get it done right!

Consider David and how he asked God even though it seemed like the same situation and God gave him two different ways to get it done. Even though it may have seemed that he could have just assumed that he could fight the battle the same way, He still turned to God for instruction and direction. His heart was to do it God’s way.

8When the Philistines heard that David was anointed king over all Israel, all the Philistines went up in search of David, but David heard of it and went out before them.
9Now the Philistines had come and raided the Valley of Rephaim.
10So David inquired of God, asking, “Should I go up against the Philistines? Will You give them over into my hand?” Then Adonai said to him, “Go up! I will give them over into your hand.” 11So they came up to Baal-perazim, where David defeated them. David said, “God burst out against my enemies by my hand, like waters burst out!” Therefore they called the name of that place Baal-perazim . 12They abandoned their gods there, so David ordered and they were burned with fire.

13But the Philistines again raided the valley.
14So David again inquired of God, and God said to him, “Do not go up after them, but circle around behind them and come against them in front of the baca trees . 15As soon as you hear the sound of marching in the tops of the baca trees, then go out to battle. For God has gone out before you to strike down the army of the Philistines.”
16David did just as God commanded him, and they struck down the Philistine army from Gibeon to Gezer. 17So the fame of David spread throughout every land, and Adonai brought the fear of him upon all nations.

–from 1 Chronicles 14

So let us not assume we know better, let’s turn to God for wisdom, each and every time. Sure we may need data, but more than data, we need the will and wisdom of God! We need to take each step one at a time and hear what the next step should be! We need to realize that trying to slowdown or speed up the process may not be the right thing to do. We need divine wisdom to make sure we get through it the right way in the right time so that we don’t mess up the blessings God has planned for us to give out as well as receive through the process.

Today’s reading begins with instruction to the people of Israel as they prepared to enter the promised land…

No Mixing With Idolaters

1“When Adonai your God brings you into the land you are entering to possess and drives out many nations before you—the Hittite and the Girgashite and the Amorite, the Canaanite and the Perizzite, the Hivite and the Jebusite, seven nations more numerous and mightier than you— 2and Adonai your God gives them over to you and you strike them down, then you are to utterly destroy them. You are to make no covenant with them and show no mercy to them. 3You are not to intermarry with them—you are not to give your daughter to his son, or take his daughter for your son. 4For he will turn your son away from following Me to serve other gods. Then the anger of Adonai will be kindled against you, and He will swiftly destroy you. 5Instead, you are to deal with them like this: tear down their altars, smash their pillars, cut down their Asherah poles, and burn their carved images with fire. 6For you are a holy people to Adonai your God—from all the peoples on the face of the earth, Adonai your God has chosen you to be His treasured people. 7“It is not because you are more numerous than all the peoples that Adonai set His love on you and chose you—for you are the least of all peoples. 8Rather, because of His love for you and His keeping the oath He swore to your fathers, Adonai brought you out with a mighty hand and redeemed you from the house of slavery, from the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt. 9“Know therefore that Adonai your God, He is God—the faithful God who keeps covenant kindness for a thousand generations with those who love Him and keep His mitzvot, 10but repays those who hate Him to their face, to annihilate them. He will not hesitate with him who hates Him; He will repay him to his face. 11Therefore you are to keep the commandment—both the statutes and the ordinances—that I am commanding you today, to do them.

Adonai Desires to Bless

12“Then it will happen, as a result of your listening to these ordinances, when you keep and do them, that Adonai your God will keep with you the covenant kindness that He swore to your fathers. 13He will love you, bless you and multiply you. He will also bless the fruit of your womb and the produce of your soil, your grain and your new wine and your oil, the increase of your herds and the young of your flock, in the land that He swore to your fathers to give you. 14From all peoples, you will be blessed—there will not be male or female barren among you or your livestock. 15Adonai will remove all sickness from you, and He will not inflict on you any of the terrible diseases of Egypt that you knew, but will inflict them on all who hate you. 16“You will devour all the peoples Adonai your God gives over to you. Your eye is not to pity them. You are not to serve their gods, for that would be a snare to you. 17Suppose you say in your heart, ‘These nations are more numerous than I—how can I drive them out?’ 18You are not to be afraid of them. You are to be sure to remember what Adonai your God did to Pharaoh and to all Egypt: 19the great trials that your eyes saw, the signs and wonders, and the mighty hand and outstretched arm by which Adonai your God brought you out. So will Adonai your God do to all the peoples you fear. 20“Moreover, Adonai your God will send the hornet against them, until the survivors and those in hiding perish before you. 21You should not be terrified of them, since Adonai your God is in your midst—a great and awesome God. 22Adonai your God will drive away those nations before you little by little—you will not be able to put an end to them all at once, or else the beasts of the field will multiply on you. 23But Adonai your God will give them over to you, and He will throw them into great confusion until they are destroyed. 24He will hand over their kings to you, and you will blot out their name from under the heavens. No man will stand up to you, until you have destroyed them all. 25“The carved images of their gods you are to burn with fire. You are not to covet the silver or gold on them or take it for yourself—or you could be snared by it, for it is an abomination to Adonai your God. 26You are not to bring an abomination into your house—for you, like it, will be a banned thing. You must utterly detest and utterly abhor it, for it is set apart for destruction.

–from Deuteronomy 7

God’s way has purpose! God’s way is the plan! So let’s avoid the pitfalls of our selfishness and align with Him so that we don’t have to go through things God never desired for us to do. Like when I didn’t respond to starting to look for a new job many years ago when God prompted me because I was too comfortable and happy. Because of my selfish or self-centered view I did it my way and instead of avoiding the pain that would be experienced by staying, I had to walk through it because I didn’t listen and obey. We need to remember all God has done, even in our disobedience! Consider the learning experience through that pain – learning how to forgive was a huge one. He will provide for our every need! If we will listen and do what He asks of us.

In today’s reading Moses continues to remind and encourage the people as they prepare to enter into the promised land with…

Not By Bread Alone

1“You are to take care to do the whole mitzvah that I am commanding you today, so that you may live and multiply and go in and possess the land that Adonai swore to your fathers. 2You are to remember all the way that Adonai your God has led you these 40 years in the wilderness—in order to humble you, to test you, to know what was in your heart, whether you would keep His mitzvot or not. 3He afflicted you and let you hunger, then He fed you manna —which neither you nor your fathers had known—in order to make you understand that man does not live by bread alone but by every word that comes from the mouth of Adonai. 4Neither did your clothing wear out on you, nor did your foot swell these 40 years. 5Now you know in your heart that as a man disciplines his son, so Adonai your God disciplines you. 6So you are to keep the mitzvot of Adonai your God—to walk in His ways and to fear Him. 7For Adonai your God is bringing you into a good land—a land of wadis with water, of springs and fountains flowing out in the valleys and hills, 8a land of wheat and barley, vines, figs and pomegranates, a land of olive oil and honey, 9a land where you will eat bread with no poverty, where you will lack nothing, a land whose stones are iron, and out of whose hills you can dig copper. 10So you will eat and be full, and you will bless Adonai your God for the good land He has given you. 11“Take care that you do not forget Adonai your God by not keeping His mitzvot, ordinances and statutes that I am commanding you today. 12Otherwise, when you have eaten and are full and have built good houses and lived in them, 13and when your herds and flocks multiply, and silver and gold multiplies for you and all that is yours multiplies, 14then your heart will be haughty and you will forget Adonai your God. He brought you out from the land of Egypt, from the house of slavery. 15He led you through the great and terrible wilderness—fiery serpents and scorpions, and thirsty ground where there was no water. He brought forth water for you from the flinty rock. 16He fed you in the wilderness with manna that your fathers did not know, in order to afflict you and test you, to do you good in the end. 17You may say in your heart, ‘My power and the might of my hand has made me this wealth.’ 18Rather you are to remember Adonai your God, for it is He who gives you power to make wealth, in order to establish His covenant that He swore to your fathers—as it is this day. 19“Now if you do forget Adonai your God, and go after other gods and serve them and worship them, I solemnly warn you today that you will certainly perish. 20Like the nations Adonai makes perish before you, so you will perish, since you would not listen to the voice of Adonai your God.

–from Deuteronomy 9

He knows what you need before you ask! He knows what you are thinking before you ask! He knows your heart and so you can’t trick Him! He knows your mind and so you can’t deceive Him! So walk with Him and talk with Him so that the relationship develops and grows daily. Will you ask Him to enter in? Will you ask Him to search you? Will you ask Him to help you grow, develop and become everything He desires of you?

How Precious Your Thoughts!

1For the music director: a psalm of David. Adonai, You searched me and know me. 2Whenever I sit down or stand up, You know it. You discern my thinking from afar. 3You observe my journeying and my resting and You are familiar with all my ways. 4Even before a word is on my tongue, behold, Adonai, You know all about it. 5You hemmed me in behind and before, and laid Your hand upon me. 6Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty for me to attain. 7Where can I go from Your Ruach? Where can I flee from Your presence? 8If I go up to heaven, You are there, and if I make my bed in Sheol, look, You are there too. 9If I take the wings of the dawn and settle on the other side of the sea, 10even there Your hand will lead me, and Your right hand will lay hold of me. 11If I say: “Surely darkness covers me, night keeps light at a distance from me,” 12even darkness is not dark for You, and night is as bright as day— darkness and light are alike. 13For You have created my conscience. You knit me together in my mother’s womb. 14I praise You, for I am awesomely, wonderfully made! Wonderful are Your works— and my soul knows that very well. 15My frame was not hidden from You when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. 16Your eyes saw me when I was unformed, and in Your book were written the days that were formed— when not one of them had come to be. 17How precious are Your thoughts, O God! How great is the sum of them! 18Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand! When I awake, I am still with You. 19If only You would slay the wicked, O God! Away from me, you bloody men! 20For they speak about You with wicked intent. Your enemies reproach You in vain. 21Do I not hate those who hate You, Adonai? Do I not loathe those who rise against You? 22I hate them with total hatred— I consider them my enemies. 23Search me, O God, and know my heart. Examine me, and know my anxious thoughts, 24and see if there be any offensive way within me, and lead me in the way everlasting.

–from Psalms 139

Allow God to search you! Allow God to remove the anxiety! Allow your hope and trust in Him to be your strength! Pray!

And as we live out this life, let’s try to bring others into the kingdom with us!

1Therefore, since we have these promises, loved ones, let us cleanse ourselves from all defilement of body and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.

Godly Sorrow and Joy

2Make room for us in your hearts. We wronged no one, ruined no one, took advantage of no one. 3I do not say this to condemn you, for I have said before that you are in our hearts—to die together and to live together with you. 4Great is my boldness of speech toward you. Great is my boasting on your behalf. I have been filled with encouragement. I overflow with joy in all our troubles. 5For even when we came into Macedonia, our body had no rest. But we were hard pressed on every side—conflicts outside, fears within. 6But God, who encourages the downcast, encouraged us with the arrival of Titus; 7and not only by his coming, but also by the encouragement with which he was encouraged by you, as he told us of your longing, your mourning, and your deep concern for me—so that I rejoiced still more. 8For even if I grieved you with my letter, I do not regret it—though I did regret it, for I see that my letter grieved you, but just for a while. 9Now I rejoice, not that you were grieved, but that you were grieved to the point of repentance. For you were grieved according to God’s will, so that you might in no way suffer loss from us. 10For the grief that God wills brings a repentance that leads to salvation, leaving no regret. But the world’s grief brings death. 11For see what this very thing—this grieving that God wills—has brought you! What diligence, what defense, what indignation, what fear, what longing, what zeal, what rendering of justice! In everything you have proved yourselves to be innocent in this matter. 12So although I wrote to you, I wrote not for the sake of the wrongdoer or for the sake of the one who was wronged, but to make known to you your diligence for us in the sight of God. 13For this reason we have been encouraged. Besides our own encouragement, we rejoiced even more at the joy of Titus, because his spirit has been refreshed by all of you. 14For if I have boasted some to him about you, I was not put to shame. But as we spoke all things truthfully to you, so also our boasting to Titus has proved to be the truth. 15His feelings toward you overflow when he remembers everyone’s obedience—how you received him with fear and trembling. 16I rejoice that in everything I have confidence in you.

–from 2 Corinthians 7

Let’s allow our confidence to be in and be found through Jesus! Let’s allow Him who gave it all to be our witness and our guide! He provided us with the Holy Spirit so let’s be attentive to the still quiet voice. As we live out life, let’s be Jesus with skin on to those around us that they may see His glory in and through our lives! Let’s live with humility! Let’s be light and salt into the world around us! Let’s be ambassadors of peace! Let’s be people who work towards creating and producing unity in the camp! Let’s allow humility and prayer to be the way we live out our lives.

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

A Glimpse of His Glory

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

The Secret of Prayer

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

The Secret of Childlike Humility

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

The Secret of Salt

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

–from Mark 9

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sometimes we need a reminder it’s not about them, it is about us!


Just because our parents did something doesn’t mean that we are that. Just because our parents had something doesn’t mean we have that. We need to be accountable and responsible for our own lives and remember what we have to be and have to do!

Today’s reading starts with such a reminder from Moses to the people of Israel before they enter into the promised land…

The Ten Words

1Moses called to all Israel and said to them, “Hear, O Israel, the statutes and the ordinances that I am speaking in your hearing today, learn them and make sure to do them. 2Adonai our God cut a covenant with us in Horeb. 3Not with our fathers has Adonai cut this covenant but with us—all of us alive here today. 4Adonai spoke with you face to face on the mountain from the midst of the fire. 5(I was standing between Adonai and you at that time, to tell you the word of Adonai, because you were afraid because of the fire and did not go up the mountain.) ‘He said: 6‘I am Adonai your God, who brought you out from the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage.
7‘You shall not have other gods beside Me.
8‘Do not make for yourself a graven image—no image of what is in the heavens above or on the earth beneath or in the water under the earth.
9Do not bow down to them or worship them. For I, Adonai your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children and on the third and fourth generation of those who hate Me, 10but showing lovingkindness to a thousand generations of those who love Me and keep My mitzvot.
11‘You must not take the Name of Adonai your God in vain, for Adonai will not leave unpunished anyone who takes His Name in vain.
12‘Observe Yom Shabbat to keep it holy, as Adonai your God commanded you.
13Six days you are to labor and do all your work, 14but the seventh day is a Shabbat to Adonai your God. In it you are not to do any work—not you or your son or your daughter, or your slave or your maid, or your ox, your donkey or any of your livestock or the outsider within your gates, so that your slave and your maid may rest as you do. 15You must remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt, and Adonai your God brought you out from there with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm. Therefore Adonai your God commanded you to keep Yom Shabbat.
16‘Honor your father and your mother just as Adonai your God commanded you, so that your days may be long and it may go well with you in the land Adonai your God is giving you.
17‘Do not murder. ‘Do not commit adultery. ‘Do not steal. ‘Do not bear false witness against your neighbor.
18‘Do not covet your neighbor’s wife, nor desire your neighbor’s house, his field, his manservant, his maidservant, his ox, his donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.’
19“These words Adonai spoke to all your assembly on the mountain from the midst of the fire, the cloud and the fog, with a great voice. He added no more. He wrote them on two tablets of stone and gave them to me.

Live and Prolong Your Days

20“As soon as you heard the voice from the midst of the darkness, while the mountain was blazing with fire, you came near to me—all the heads of your tribes and your elders. 21Then you said, ‘Adonai our God has just shown us His glory and His greatness, and we have heard His voice from the midst of the fire. This day we have seen that God speaks with man, and yet he keeps on living. 22Now then, why should we die? For this great fire will consume us! If we hear the voice of Adonai our God any more, then we will die. 23For who is there of all flesh who has heard the voice of the living God speaking from the midst of the fire, as we have, and lived? 24You go near and hear all that Adonai our God says. Then you tell us all what Adonai our God tells you, and we will hear it and do it.’ 25“Adonai heard the tone of your words when you spoke to me, and Adonai said to me, ‘I have heard the tone of the words that this people has spoken to you—they have done well in all they have spoken. 26If only there were such a heart in them to fear Me and keep all My mitzvot always, so that it might go well with them and with their children forever! 27Go say to them, “Return to your tents.” 28But as for you, stand here by Me, and I will tell you the whole commandment—both the statutes and the ordinances that you are to teach them. And they will do them in the land I am giving them to possess.’ 29“So you must take care to do as Adonai your God has commanded you—do not turn aside to the right or to the left. 30You are to walk in all the way that Adonai your God has commanded you, so that you may live and it may be well with you and you may prolong your days in the land that you will possess.

–from Deuteronomy 5

How will you remember? How will you remind yourself? How will you pass this along to the next generation? You are responsible and accountable for what you do! Will you prepare them? Will you teach them? Will you show them? Will you tell them? Will you share with them?

1“Now this is the commandment, the statutes and ordinances that Adonai your God commanded to teach you to do in the land you are crossing over to possess— 2so that you might fear Adonai your God, to keep all His statutes and mitzvot that I am commanding you and your son and your son’s son all the days of your life, and so that you may prolong your days. 3Hear, therefore, O Israel, and take care to do this, so that it may go well with you and you may increase mightily, as Adonai the God of your fathers has promised you, in a land flowing with milk and honey.

Shema Israel, Adonai Eloheinu, Adonai Echad

4“Hear O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one . 5Love Adonai your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. 6These words, which I am commanding you today, are to be on your heart. 7You are to teach them diligently to your children, and speak of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down and when you rise up. 8Bind them as a sign on your hand, they are to be as frontlets between your eyes, 9and write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.

When You Prosper, Do not Forget

10“Now when Adonai your God brings you into the land that He swore to your fathers—to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob—to give you great and good cities that you did not build, 11and houses full of all good things that you did not fill, and cisterns dug that you did not dig, vineyards and olive trees that you did not plant, and you eat and are full, 12then watch yourself so that you do not forget Adonai, who brought you out from the land of Egypt, from the house of slavery. 13You must fear Adonai your God and serve Him, and swear by His Name. 14You must not go after other gods, the gods of the peoples around you; 15for Adonai your God in the midst of you is a jealous God. Otherwise the anger of Adonai your God will be kindled against you, and He will wipe you from the face of the earth. 16“You are not to test Adonai your God, as you tested Him at Massah. 17Diligently keep the mitzvot of Adonai your God, and His testimonies and His statutes that He has commanded you. 18You are to do what is right and good in the sight of Adonai, so that it may go well with you and you may go in and possess the good land that Adonai swore to your fathers— 19to drive out all your enemies from before you, as Adonai has spoken.

When Your Son Asks

20“When your son asks you in time to come, saying ‘What are the testimonies and the statutes and the ordinances that Adonai our God commanded you?’ 21then you are to tell your son, ‘We were slaves to Pharaoh in Egypt, and Adonai brought us out from Egypt with a mighty hand. 22Before our eyes Adonai showed signs and wonders, great and terrible—on Egypt, on Pharaoh, and on all his house. 23Then He brought us out from there so that He might bring us in, to give us the land that He swore to our fathers. 24Adonai commanded us to do all these statutes, to fear Adonai our God—for our good always, to keep us alive, as is the case this day. 25It will be righteousness to us, if we take care to do all this commandment before Adonai our God, just as He has commanded us.’

–from Deuteronomy 6

Remember the Earth is the Lord’s and everything in it! Remember you have what you have because He gave it to you to be a good steward of it! Be it finances! Be it property! Be it people in your life – spouse, children, parents, siblings, friends, etc. Be a good steward of every good gift from God!

Trust Him with everything! Seek wisdom from Him in everything! Don’t make assumptions, but rather pray and get wisdom that is divine and direct.

Protect Me from Conspiracies

1For the music director, a psalm of David. 2Hear my voice, O God, in my complaint. Protect my life from terror of the enemy. 3Hide me from the conspiracy of evildoers, from the tumult of workers of iniquity, 4who sharpened their tongue like a sword, and aimed their arrow—bitter words, 5to shoot from hiding at the innocent, shooting suddenly at him, with no fear. 6They are firming up their evil plan. They talk about setting secret traps. They asked, “Who would see them?” 7They are plotting injustices: “We have completed a perfect plot!” A man’s inward part and heart are deep. 8But God will shoot them with an arrow— suddenly their wounds will appear. 9So their tongue will be their downfall. All who see them will flee away. 10Then all men will fear. So they will declare the work of God, and ponder what He has done. 11The righteous will be glad in Adonai and take refuge in Him. Let all the upright in heart give glory!

–from Psalms 64

So where does your hope come from? Where does your trust come from? As for me and my house we trust the Lord! Every step! Every word! Every action! Every thought! Every word! Put your trust in Him and allow Him to guide your steps.

Let’s work together for the greater good! Let’s come together in unity! Let’s be the body, each with our specific purpose!

1Since we are co-laboring, we also urge you not to receive God’s grace in vain. 2For He says, “At a favorable time I listened to you, in a day of salvation I helped you.” Behold, now is the favorable time. Behold, now is the day of salvation. 3We give no cause for offense in anything, so that our ministry may not be blamed. 4But as God’s servants, we are commending ourselves in every way—in great endurance, in afflictions, in hardships, in distresses, 5in beatings, in imprisonments, in riots, in troubles, in sleeplessness, in hunger; 6in purity, in knowledge, in patience, in kindness, in the Ruach ha-Kodesh, in genuine love, 7in truthful speech, in the power of God; with the weapons of righteousness in the right hand and in the left; 8through honor and dishonor, through evil report and good report. We are regarded as deceivers and yet true; 9as unknown and yet well-known; as dying, yet behold, we live; as disciplined yet not put to death; 10as grieving yet always rejoicing; as poor yet enriching many; as having nothing yet possessing everything. 11We have spoken openly to you, O Corinthians; our heart is open wide! 12You are not restricted by us, yet you are restricted in your own feelings. 13Now in return—I speak as to my children—open wide to us also.

Preserving Sanctity in God’s Living Temple

14Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership is there between righteousness and lawlessness? Or what fellowship does light have with darkness? 15What harmony does Messiah have with Belial? Or what part does a believer have in common with an unbeliever? 16What agreement does God’s Temple have with idols? For we are the temple of the living God—just as God said, “I will dwell in them and walk among them; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people. 17Therefore, come out from among them, and be separate, says Adonai. Touch no unclean thing. Then I will take you in. 18I will be a father to you, and you shall be My sons and daughters, says Adonai-Tzva’ot.”

–from 2 Corinthians 6

So let’s turn to Jesus! Let’s be asking Him for wisdom! Not getting something? Ask Him for wisdom and discernment! Is it because there is something better? Is it because it isn’t as good as what you think? Is it a no or a not right now? We need to be willing to listen and hear what He has to say! We need to be willing to spend the time to be filled up! He has a plan for you! If you are willing to give Him the little you have, He can take it and multiply it and bless so many! We just need to trust Him! We just need to listen to Him! We just need to obey Him! And allow Him to work in and through us and our lives into the world around us! When we know the purpose, nothing will be able to deter us from completing the work God has prepared in advance for us to do!

Do You Still Not Understand?

1In those days, there was another large crowd with nothing to eat, and Yeshua called the disciples. He said to them, 2“I have compassion for the crowd, because they’ve stayed with Me for three days now and have nothing to eat. 3If I send them home hungry they’ll pass out on the way, for some of them have come from very far away.” 4His disciples answered Him, “How can anyone satisfy these people with bread here in a wasteland?” 5“How many loaves do you have?” Yeshua was asking them. “Seven,” they said. 6He directed the crowd to recline on the ground. After taking the seven loaves and giving thanks, He broke them and began giving them to His disciples to serve; and they served them to the crowd. 7They also had a few small fish and, after offering a bracha for them, He commanded these to be served as well. 8They ate and were satisfied, and they picked up the broken pieces left over—seven baskets. 9About four thousand were there, and Yeshua sent them away. 10Right away, He got into the boat with His disciples and went to the area of Dalmanutha. 11The Pharisees came and began to argue with Him, demanding a sign from heaven, to test Him. 12Sighing deeply in His spirit, Yeshua said, “Why does this generation demand a sign? Amen, I tell you, no sign will be given to this generation.” 13Leaving them, He got back into the boat and crossed to the other side.

The Un-Seeing Disciples

14Now the disciples had forgotten to take bread, and they had only one loaf in the boat. 15Yeshua was warning them, “Watch out! Beware of the hametz of the Pharisees and the hametz of Herod.” 16They began to discuss with each other that they had no bread. 17And Yeshua, aware of this, said to them, “Why do you discuss that you have no bread? You still don’t get it? Don’t you understand? Are your hearts hardened? 18Having eyes, don’t you see? And having ears, don’t you hear? And don’t you remember? 19When I broke the five loaves for the five thousand, how many baskets of leftovers did you pick up?” “Twelve,” they say to Him. 20“When I broke the seven loaves for the four thousand, how many baskets of leftovers did you pick up?” “Seven,” they say to Him. 21He said to them, “Do you still not understand?”

Eyes that Need Opening

22They come to Bethsaida. Some people bring a blind man to Yeshua and beg Him to touch the man. 23Taking the blind man by the hand, Yeshua brought him outside the village. After spitting on the man’s eyes and laying His hands on him, Yeshua asked the man, “Do you see anything?” 24The man looked up and said, “I see men! They look like trees walking about.” 25Then Yeshua put His hands on the man’s eyes again. The man looked intently, his sight was restored, and he began to see everything clearly. 26Yeshua sent him straight home, saying, “Don’t even enter the village!” 27Now Yeshua and His disciples went out to the villages around Caesarea Philippi. On the way He asked His disciples, “Who do people say that I am?” 28They told Him, “John the Immerser; and others Elijah; but others, one of the prophets.” 29Then He asked them, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter answered Him, “You are the Messiah!” 30And He warned them not to tell anyone about Him.

Revealing the Mission

31Then He began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and ruling kohanim and Torah scholars, and be killed, and after three days rise again. 32He was speaking openly about this. And Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him. 33But turning around and looking at His disciples, He rebuked Peter. He said, “Get behind Me, satan! You are not setting your mind on the things of God, but the things of men.” 34Then He called the crowd, along with His disciples, and said to them, “If anyone wants to follow after Me, he must deny himself, take up his cross, and keep following Me. 35For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the sake of the Good News will save it. 36For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world, yet forfeit his soul? 37For what could a man give in exchange for his soul? 38For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this unfaithful and sinful generation, the Son of Man will also be ashamed of him when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels!”

–from Mark 8

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What will you do with your second chance?


Ever been in a situation where fear or doubt kept you from completing what God had called you to do?  Ever been in a situation where disobediences to the call caused you to miss out on what had been planned? Don’t give up! Don’t lose hope! How will you receive the second chance? How will you respond? Will it be in trust? Will it be in obedience?

I have 2 pictures that come to mind – 1 when God called me to step up and be a leader in my community and 1 when God called me to move on from a job where I was happy and comfortable. I learned some pretty big lessons through both of the experiences. In the first example, fear and doubt were causing me to feel I wasn’t qualified to take on the role – God was calling me to step up to be the president of the home owners association I was part of that had about 10000 people in the community. In the second example, out of disobedience due to a sense of comfort and joy I didn’t pursue other opportunities.

In the first example, it got to the point where there was a mid-term election because a majority of the board ended up kicking out the existing president and we had to elect from the existing group. I stayed as VP by vote and also by not stepping up and putting my name in for the president role. As the year was coming to an end and the new year and new elections were going to happen, I was at the gym when I received the ultimatum from God “you will be president or you will be nothing! you choose” — so I chose that I would be ok with President if I was elected. To make a long story short, at the board meeting where the new members and existing ones come together to kick off and define roles and responsibilities, I was nominated and accepted the nomination and when the members voted, I was elected president. He did incredible things through that time – when I wasn’t sure what to do He provided me with wisdom and discernment. It was all Him working in and through me. When I put my hope and trust in Him rather than allowing the lies of the enemy to create fear and doubt, it was amazing the testimonies I now have and the assurance I have for future events in my life.

In the second example, by disobedience cause me to have to live out the breakup of our organization and the shuffling of where people had to go and the lies and deception of the new team. A gold nugget through that process was that I learned the power of forgiveness. So God can redeem us and God can provide us a second chance. In this example, I later moved from the first team and then it happened again with the next team, in this example my first response was to forgive them and wow what a difference that made to the process and to my health.

God knows what He is doing! If you miss out for some reason the first time, learn from it and don’t repeat it, but live it out to God’s full potential. Accept the second chance and watch God work in and through it all.


Today’s reading speaks to the second chance for the people of Israel. They missed their first chance and had to wander the wilderness for 40 years. The first generation what missed the mark were gone and the new generation was going to get their chance. Moses wasn’t going to get to go, however, God would provide Joshua to lead the people into the promised land. But we will see how Moses speaks to the people to encourage them to not lose faith and to step up and step into what God has planned for them.

1“Next we turned and went up the way to the Bashan. King Og of the Bashan came out against us—he and all his people—for battle at Edrei. 2But Adonai said to me, ‘Do not fear him, for I have handed him over and all his people and his land. You will do to him as you did to Sihon king of the Amorites, who lived in Heshbon.’ 3“So Adonai our God also handed over King Og of the Bashan and all his people, and we struck him down until no survivor was left. 4We captured all his cities at that time—there was not a town that we did not take from them—sixty cities, the whole region of Argob, the kingdom of Og in the Bashan. 5All these were cities fortified with high walls, gates and bars, in addition to a great many unwalled towns. 6We utterly destroyed them, just as we did to Sihon king of Heshbon, utterly destroying every city—men, women and children. 7But all the livestock and the spoils of the cities we took as plunder for ourselves. 8“So at that time we took from the hand of the two kings of the Amorites the land across the Jordan, from the Wadi Arnon to Mount Hermon. 9(Sidonians call Hermon Sirion, and the Amorites call it Senir.) 10We took all the cities of the plain and all the Gilead and all the Bashan, as far as Salcah and Edrei, cities of the kingdom of Og in the Bashan. 11(For only King Og of the Bashan survived from the remnant of the Rephaim. In fact, his bed was made of iron—is it not in Rabbah of the Ammonites? Nine cubits was its length and four cubits its width, according to the cubit of a man.)

Possession East of Jordan

12“This land we took in possession at that time—from Aroer by the Wadi Arnon and half the hill country of the Gilead and its cities—I gave to the Reubenites and Gadites. 13The rest of the Gilead and all of the Bashan, the kingdom of Og, I gave to the half-tribe of Manasseh—all the region of the Argob. (All the Bashan is called the land of Rephaim. 14Jair son of Manasseh took all the region of Argob, as far as the border of the Geshurites and the Maachathites. He called them—the Bashan—after his own name, Havvoth-jair’s Villages, as it is the case to this day.) 15“To Machir I gave the Gilead. 16To the Reubenite and Gadites I gave from the Gilead as far as the Wadi Arnon—the middle of the wadi as the border—and as far as Jabbok, the wadi that is the border of the sons of Ammon, 17and the Arabah, with the Jordan as the border from Kinneret as far as the sea of the Arabah, the Salt Sea, under the slopes of Pisgah eastward. 18“I commanded you at that time, saying, ‘Adonai your God has given you this land to possess it. Ready for battle, you will cross over ahead of your brothers Bnei-Yisrael—all the men of valor. 19Only your wives and your little ones and your livestock (I know that you have much livestock) may stay in your cities that I have given you, 20until Adonai gives rest to your brothers as He has for you, and they also possess the land that Adonai your God is giving them across the Jordan. Then you may return, each man to his possession that I have given you.’ 21“I commanded Joshua at that time saying, ‘Your eyes have seen all that Adonai your God has done to these two kings. Adonai will do the same to all the kingdoms you are about to cross into. 22You must not fear them, for it is Adonai your God who fights for you.’

Moses Pleads to Enter

23“I pleaded with Adonai at that time, saying, 24‘O Lord Adonai, You have begun to show Your servant Your greatness and Your strong hand—for what god is there in heaven or on earth who can do deeds and mighty acts like Yours? 25Please! Let me cross over and see the good land across the Jordan—that good hill country and the Lebanon.’ 26“But Adonai was angry with me because of you, so He would not listen to me. ‘Enough!’ Adonai said to me, ‘Do not speak to Me anymore about this matter. 27Go up to the top of Pisgah, look around to the west and the north and the south and the east, and see with your eyes—for you will not cross over this Jordan. 28But commission Joshua, and encourage and strengthen him, for he will cross over before this people, and he will enable them to inherit the land that you will see.’ 29So we stayed in the valley opposite Beth-peor.

–from Deuteronomy 3

When the second chance happens, remember and be obedient to God’s call!

Bnei-Yisrael Must Listen and Obey

1“Now, O Israel, listen to the statutes and ordinances that I am teaching you to do, so that you may live and go in and possess the land that Adonai the God of your fathers is giving you. 2You must not add to the word that I am commanding you or take away from it—in order to keep the mitzvot of Adonai your God that I am commanding you. 3Your eyes have seen what Adonai did at Baal Peor, for Adonai your God has destroyed from among you everyone who followed Baal Peor. 4But you who held tight to Adonai your God are alive today—all of you. 5“See, just as Adonai my God commanded me, I have taught you statutes and ordinances to do in the land that you are about to enter to possess. 6You must keep and do them, for it is your wisdom and understanding in the eyes of the peoples, who will hear all these statutes and say, ‘Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people.’ 7For what great nation is there that has gods so near to them, as Adonai our God is whenever we call on Him? 8What great nation is there that has statutes and ordinances that are righteous—like all of this Torah that I am setting before you today? 9“Only be watchful and watch over your soul closely, so you do not forget the things your eyes have seen and they slip from your heart all the days of your life. You are to make them known to your children and your children’s children. 10The day that you stood before Adonai your God in Horeb, Adonai said to me, ‘Gather the people to Me and I will make them hear My words, so that they learn to fear Me all the days that they live on the earth, and so that they teach their children.’

Words from the Fiery Mountain

11“You came near and stood at the bottom of the mountain while the mountain was blazing with fire up to the heart of the heavens—darkness, cloud, and fog. 12Adonai spoke to you from the midst of the fire. The sound of words you heard, but a form you did not see—only a voice. 13He declared to you His covenant, which He commanded you to do—the Ten Words—and He wrote them on two tablets of stone. 14Adonai commanded me at that time to teach you statutes and ordinances, so that you might do them in the land you are crossing over to possess. 15“So be very watchful over your souls since you saw no form on the day that Adonai spoke to you in Horeb out of the midst of the fire, 16so that you do not act corruptly and make for yourselves a graven image in the likeness of any figure—the form of a male or female, 17the form of any animal that is on the earth, the form of any winged bird that flies in the sky, 18the form of anything that creeps on the ground, the form of any fish that is in the water under the earth— 19and so that you do not lift up your eyes toward the heavens and see the sun and the moon and the stars—all the heavenly host—and are drawn away and bow down and worship them. Adonai your God has allotted them to all the peoples under all the heavens. 20But you, Adonai has taken, and He brought you out of the iron furnace, out of Egypt to be a people for His own inheritance, as you are this day. 21“Furthermore Adonai was angry with me because of your words, and He swore that I would not cross over the Jordan or enter the good land that Adonai your God is giving you for an inheritance. 22For I must die in this land; I am not crossing over the Jordan. But you will cross over and take possession of that good land.

23Watch yourselves, so that you do not forget the covenant of Adonai your God, which He cut with you, and make for yourselves a graven image in the form of anything that Adonai your God has forbidden you. 24For Adonai your God is a consuming fire —a jealous God. 25“When you father children and children’s children and have been in the land a long time, and you act corruptly and make a graven image in the form of anything and do evil in the sight of Adonai your God, provoking Him to anger, 26I call heaven and earth to witness against you today that you will certainly be carried off quickly from the land you are crossing over the Jordan to possess. You will not prolong your days on it, for you will certainly be destroyed. 27Adonai will scatter you among the peoples, and you will be left few in number among the nations where Adonai will drive you. 28There you will serve man-made gods of wood and stone, which do not see or hear or eat or smell. 29But from there you will seek Adonai your God and you will find Him, when you seek Him with all your heart and with all your soul. 30“When you are in distress and all these things have come on you, in the latter days you will return to Adonai your God and listen to His voice.

31For Adonai your God is a merciful God. He will not abandon you or destroy you, or forget the covenant with your fathers that He swore to them. 32“Indeed, ask now about the former days that were before you, from the day that God created man on the earth, and ask from one end of the sky to the other. Has there ever been such a great thing as this, or has anything like it been heard? 33Has a people ever heard the voice of God speaking from the midst of the fire, as you have heard—and lived? 34Or has any god ever tried to come to take for himself a nation from within a nation—by trials, by signs and wonders, and by war, and by a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, and by great terrors—like all that Adonai your God did for you in Egypt before your eyes? 35You were shown, so that you might know that Adonai is God—there is no other besides Him. 36From the heavens He made you hear His voice to instruct you, and on earth He caused you to see His great fire—you heard His words from the midst of the fire. 37Because He loved your fathers, He chose their descendants after them. Then He brought you out from Egypt with His presence, by His great power— 38to drive out from before you nations greater and mightier than you, to bring you in to give you their land for an inheritance, as it is this day. 39“So you will know today and take to heart that Adonai, He is God, in the heavens above and on the earth below—there is no other. 40You must keep His statutes and His mitzvot, which I am commanding you today, so that it may go well with you and with your children after you, and so that you may prolong your days in the land that Adonai your God is giving you for all time.” 41Then Moses set apart three cities beyond the Jordan, toward the east. 42There the manslayer might flee, who kills his neighbor unintentionally and did not hate him previously. He may flee to one of these cities and live: 43Bezer in the wilderness on the plateau for the Reubenites, Ramot in the Gilead for the Gadites, and Golan in the Bashan for the Manassites. 44This is the Torah, which Moses set before Bnei-Yisrael. 45These are the testimonies and the statutes and the ordinances, which Moses spoke to Bnei-Yisrael when they came out from Egypt— 46beyond the Jordan, in the valley opposite Beth-peor, in the land of Sihon king of the Amorites who lived at Heshbon, whom Moses and Bnei-Yisrael struck down when they came out from Egypt. 47They took possession of his land and the land of Og king of the Bashan, the two kings of the Amorites who were beyond the Jordan toward the east— 48from Aroer, which is on the edge of the wadi Arnon, as far as Mount Sion (that is, Hermon), 49and all the Arabah beyond the Jordan eastward, as far as the sea of the Arabah , under the slopes of Pisgah.

–from Deuteronomy 4

Let’s be living for the long term goal! Let’s be living for the purpose God has given us! Let’s be living for the call He has put on our lives! Let’s be aiming for eternity spent with Him! Our time here is temporary and we need to be able to do the best we can as good stewards while we are here! Let’s invest in what will last! Let’s spend on things that are eternal! Spend time! Spend energy! Spend money! Spend love! Spend hope! Spend words of encouragement! Let’s be good ambassadors for Jesus in the way we live!

Earthly Tents, Eternal Dwellings

1For we know that if the tent, our earthly home, is torn down, we have a building from God—a home not made with human hands, eternal in the heavens. 2For in this we groan, longing to be clothed with our heavenly dwelling— 3if indeed, after we have put it on, we will not be found naked. 4For we groan while we are in this tent—burdened because we don’t want to be unclothed but to be clothed, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life. 5Now the One who prepared us for this very purpose is God, who gave us the Ruach as a pledge. 6Therefore we are always confident and know that while we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord. 7For we walk by faith, not by sight. 8We are confident, I say, and prefer rather to be absent from the body and at home with the Lord. 9So whether at home or absent, we make it our aim to be pleasing to Him. 10For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Messiah, so that each one may receive what is due for the things he did while in the body—whether good or bad.

Ambassadors for Messiah

11Therefore, knowing the fear of the Lord, we are trying to persuade people, but what we are is known to God—and I hope it is known to your consciences as well. 12For we are not commending ourselves to you again, but giving you an opportunity for boasting about us, so that you may have something to answer those who boast in outward appearance and not in the heart. 13For if we are out of our minds, it is for God; if we are in our right mind, it is for you. 14For the love of Messiah compels us, since we have concluded that One died for all; as a result all died. 15And He died for all so that those who live might no longer live for themselves, but for the One who died for them and was raised. 16So from now on we recognize no one according to the flesh. Even though we have known Messiah according to the flesh, yet now we no longer know Him this way. 17Therefore if anyone is in Messiah, he is a new creation. The old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. 18Now all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Messiah and gave us the ministry of reconciliation. 19That is, in Messiah God was reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them; and He has entrusted the message of reconciliation to us. 20We are therefore ambassadors for Messiah, as though God were making His appeal through us. We beg you on behalf of Messiah, be reconciled to God. 21He made the One who knew no sin to become a sin offering on our behalf, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God.

–from 2 Corinthians 5

 

 

 

 

 

Will you remind them? Will you prepare them?


Something big is coming! Something important is coming! Something that will change the future for everyone!

So what are you going to do about it? Will you speak life into the people? Will you speak hope into the people? Will you give them wisdom? Will you give them instructions? Will you give them a reminder? Will you set them up for success? Will you prepare them for what is yet to come? Will you remind them of where their hope comes from? Will  you remind them where to put their trust? Will you remind them of what happened in the past? Will you give them enough information that they won’t repeat the mistakes of the past?

What will you do?

Today’s reading begins at Deuteronomy what Moses does just as the people are preparing to take the promised land…

Devarim: The Words that Moses Spoke

1These are the words that Moses spoke to all Israel across the Jordan—in the wilderness, in the Arabah opposite Suph, between Paran and Tophel, Laban, Hazeroth and Di-Zahab. 2It is eleven days’ journey from Horeb by way of Mount Seir to Kadesh-barnea. 3Now Moses spoke to Bnei-Yisrael, according to all Adonai had commanded him for them—in the fortieth year, in the eleventh month, on the first day of the month, 4after he had struck down Sihon king of the Amorites who lived in Heshbon, and Og king of the Bashan who lived in Ashtaroth and Edrei. 5Across the Jordan in the land of Moab, Moses began to explain this Torah saying, 6“Adonai our God spoke to us at Horeb saying: ‘You have stayed long enough at this mountain. 7Turn, journey on, and enter the hill country of the Amorites and all their neighbors, in the Arabah, the hill country, the lowland, the Negev, and by the seashore—the land of the Canaanites and the Lebanon as far as the great river, the Euphrates. 8See, I have set the land before you. Enter and possess the land that Adonai swore to your fathers—to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob—to give to them and to their descendants after them.’

Bad Report and Poor Response

9“I spoke to you at that time saying: ‘I am not able to bear the burden of you by myself. 10Adonai your God has multiplied you—and here you are today, like the stars of the heavens in number. 11“‘May Adonai, God of your fathers, increase you a thousand times as many as you are, and may He bless you just as He has promised you! 12How can I bear your load and burden and bickering by myself? 13Choose for yourselves wise and discerning men, well known to your tribes, and I will appoint them as your heads.’ 14“You answered me and said: ‘The thing you have said to do is good.’ 15So I took the heads of your tribes, men who were wise and well known, and appointed them as heads over you—leaders of thousands, leaders of hundreds, leaders of fifties, leaders of tens, and officials for your tribes. 16“I commanded your judges at that time saying: ‘Hear cases between your brothers, and judge fairly between a man and his brother or the outsider with him. 17You must not show partiality in judgment —you must hear the small and the great alike. Fear no man, for the judgment is God’s. The case that is too hard for you, you shall bring to me and I will hear it.’ 18“I commanded you at that time everything you should do. 19“Then we journeyed from Horeb and went through all that great and terrible wilderness that you saw on the way to the hill country of the Amorites, as Adonai our God commanded us. Then we came to Kadesh-barnea. 20I said to you: ‘You have come to the hill country of the Amorites, which Adonai our God is giving to us. 21See, Adonai your God has set the land before you—go up, take possession, as Adonai God of your fathers has promised you. Do not be afraid or discouraged.’ 22“Then all of you came near to me and said: ‘Let’s send men ahead of us to explore the land for us and bring us back word about the way we should go up and the cities we will enter.’ 23“The idea seemed good to me, so I took twelve men from among you—one man for each tribe. 24They turned and went up into the hill country, and they came to the Wadi Eshcol and spied it out. 25They took in their hands some of the fruit of the land and brought it down to us. They also brought back word to us and said, ‘Good is the land that Adonai our God is giving to us.’ 26“Yet you would not go up, but rebelled against the command of Adonai your God. 27In your tents you grumbled and said: ‘Because Adonai hates us, He has brought us out from the land of Egypt to hand us over to the Amorites, to destroy us! 28Where are we going? Our brothers have discouraged our hearts saying, “The people are greater and taller than we are! The cities are great and fortified up to the heavens! Besides, we have even seen the children of Anakim there!”’ 29“Then I said to you, ‘Don’t tremble or be afraid of them. 30Adonai your God, who goes before you, He Himself will fight for you—just as He did for you in Egypt before your own eyes, 31and in the wilderness, where you saw how Adonai your God carried you as a man carries his son, everywhere you went until you came to this place.’ 32Yet for all this you did not trust in Adonai your God— 33the One who goes before you on the way to scout out a place for you to camp and to show you the way you should go, in fire by night and in the cloud by day. 34“When Adonai heard the tone of your words, He was angry and swore an oath saying, 35‘Not one of these men of this evil generation will see the good land that I swore to give your fathers— 36except Caleb the son of Jephunneh. He will see it—yet to him and his children I will give the land that he has walked on, because he has followed Adonai wholeheartedly.’ 37“Adonai was even angry with me on your account, saying, ‘You will not enter there, either. 38Joshua son of Nun, who stands before you, will enter there—encourage him, for he will enable Israel to inherit it. 39“‘Moreover, your little ones—whom you said would become plunder, and your children who today have no knowledge of good or evil—they will enter there. To them I will give it and they will possess it. 40But as for you, turn around and journey into the wilderness by way of the Sea of Reeds .’ 41“Then you answered and said to me, ‘We have sinned against Adonai. We will go up and fight, just as Adonai our God commanded us.’ So each of you strapped on his weapons of war, figuring it was easy to go up to the hill country. 42“But Adonai said to me, ‘Tell them, “Do not go up and fight—for I am not with you, and you will be defeated by your enemies.”’ 43“So I told you, but you would not listen—you rebelled against the command of Adonai and presumptuously went up into the hill country. 44The Amorites who lived in that hill country came out against you, and they chased you as bees do and scattered you from Seir to Hormah. 45Then you returned and wept before Adonai, but Adonai did not listen to your voice or pay attention to you. 46“So you stayed in Kadesh many days—like the days you had spent before.

–from Deuteronomy 1

Will you provide them with enough to make sure they aren’t wandering endlessly? Will you provide them with enough to make sure they know where to turn when they have questions and need help? Will you provide them with a leader who can help?

Moses Recalls Wilderness Journey

1“Then we turned and journeyed into the wilderness by the way to the Sea of Reeds, just as Adonai told me. We went around the hill country of Seir for many days. 2“Adonai spoke to me saying, 3‘You have gone around this hill country long enough—turn to the north. 4Command the people saying, “You are about to cross into the territory of your relatives, the sons of Esau, who dwell in Seir. They will be afraid of you, so be very careful. 5Do not provoke them, for I will not give you any of their land—not even a footprint—because I have given the hill country of Seir to Esau as a possession. 6You are to buy food from them for money so that you may eat, and you are also to buy water from them for money so that you may drink. 7For Adonai your God has blessed you in all the work of your hand—He has known your wanderings through this great wilderness. These 40 years Adonai your God has been with you—you have lacked nothing.”’ 8“So we went on past our relatives the sons of Esau who dwell in Seir, away from the way of the Arabah from Elath and Ezion-geber. We turned and passed by the way of the wilderness of Moab. 9“Adonai said to me, ‘Do not harass Moab or engage them in battle. For I will not give you any of his land for a possession, because I have given Ar to the children of Lot for a possession. 10(The Emim used to live there—a great and numerous people, as tall as the Anakim. 11These people also are considered Rephaim, like the Anakim; but the Moabites call them Emim. 12Now the Horites used to live in Seir, but the sons of Esau drove them out and destroyed them from before themselves and settled in their place—just as Israel did to the land of its possession that Adonai gave to them.) 13Now rise up, and cross over the Wadi Zered.’ So we went over the Wadi Zered. 14“The time that we traveled from Kadesh-barnea until we crossed over the Wadi Zered was 38 years—until all the generation of the men of war from within the camp came to an end, as Adonai had sworn to them. 15Indeed, the hand of Adonai was against them, to destroy them from within the camp until they came to their end. 16“Now when all the men of war had finished dying from among the people, 17Adonai spoke to me saying, 18‘Today you are about to cross the border of Moab at Ar. 19When you come opposite the sons of Ammon, do not harass or provoke them—for I will not give you any of the land of the sons of Ammon for a possession, because I have given it to the sons of Lot for a possession. 20(That also is considered a land of Rephaim. Rephaim used to live there, but the Ammonites call them Zamzummim— 21a great and numerous people, as tall as the Anakim. But Adonai destroyed them from before them, and the Ammonites dispossessed them and settled in their place. 22It was just as Adonai did for the sons of Esau, who dwell in Seir, when He destroyed the Horites before them. They drove them out and settled in their place even to this day. 23As for the Avvim who lived in villages as far as Gaza, the Caphtorim who came from Crete destroyed them and settled in their place.)

Defeat of Sihon and Og

24“‘Rise up, journey on, and cross over the Wadi Arnon. See, I have handed over Sihon the Amorite, king of Heshbon, and his land—begin to possess it! Engage him in battle! 25This very day I will begin to put the dread and fear of you upon the peoples everywhere under heaven. When they hear the report about you, they will tremble and twist in anguish because of you.’ 26“So I sent messengers from the wilderness of Kedemoth to Sihon king of Heshbon with words of shalom saying, 27‘Let me pass through your land—I will go only by way of the road. I will not turn to the right or to the left. 28You will sell me food for money so that I may eat and give me water for money so that I may drink. Just let me pass through on foot— 29as the sons of Esau dwelling in Seir and the Moabites in Ar did for me—until I cross over the Jordan into the land that Adonai our God is giving to us.’ 30But Sihon king of Heshbon would not let us pass by him, because Adonai your God stiffened his spirit and hardened his heart, in order to hand him over to you this very day. 31“Adonai said to me, ‘See, I have begun to give Sihon and his land over to you—begin to take possession in order to take hold of his land.’ 32“Then Sihon came out against us—he and all his people—to battle at Jahaz. 33Adonai our God gave him over to us, and we struck him down along with his sons and all his people. 34We captured all his cities at that time, and utterly put under a ban of judgment every city—men, women and children. We left no survivor. 35We took only the livestock as plunder for ourselves, as the spoils of the cities we captured. 36From Aroer which is on the edge of the Wadi Arnon and the city by the wadi, all the way up to the Gilead, there was not a town too high for us. Adonai our God gave everything over to us. 37Only you did not come near the land of the sons of Ammon—all along the Wadi Jabbok and the cities of the hill country and wherever Adonai our God had commanded.

–from Deuteronomy 2

Will you point them to God? Will God be the answer? Will you give them hope through Jesus? You have your chance, so how will you share it? Remember their fragility! Remember the treasure they are! Before it is too late…

Treasures in Jars of Clay

1For this reason, since we have this ministry, just as we received mercy, we do not lose heart. 2Instead, we renounced the hidden shameful ways—not walking in deception or distorting the word of God, but commending ourselves before God to everyone’s conscience by the open proclamation of the truth. 3And even if our Good News is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. 4In their case, the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelieving, so they might not see the light of the Good News of the glory of Messiah, who is the image of God. 5For we do not proclaim ourselves, but Messiah Yeshua as Lord—and ourselves as your slaves for Yeshua’s sake. 6For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” is the One who has shone in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Messiah. 7But we have this treasure in jars of clay, so that the surpassing greatness of the power may be from God and not from ourselves. 8We are hard pressed in every way, yet not crushed; perplexed, yet not in despair; 9persecuted, yet not forsaken; struck down, yet not destroyed; 10always carrying in the body the death of Yeshua, so that the life of Yeshua may also be revealed in our mortal body. 11For we who live are always being handed over to death for Yeshua’s sake, so that the life of Yeshua may be revealed in our mortal body. 12So death is at work in us, but life is at work in you. 13But we have the same spirit of faith, according to what is written, “I believed, and therefore I spoke.” So we also believe, and therefore we also speak, 14knowing that the One who raised the Lord Yeshua will raise us also with Yeshua, and will bring us with you into His presence. 15For all things are for your sakes, so that the grace that is spreading through more and more people may cause thanksgiving to overflow—to the glory of God. 16Therefore we do not lose heart. Though our outward man is decaying, yet our inward man is renewed day by day. 17For our trouble, light and momentary, is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison, 18as we look not at what can be seen but at what cannot be seen. For what can be seen is temporary, but what cannot be seen is eternal.

–from 2 Corinthians 4