YALE UNIVERSITY SEAL AND MOTTO …(The Bible’s Impact on the Academy – Education) [Sept 3]


Ever consider where education got started? Ever considered the original intent of why schools from elementary up to college and university levels were setup? Ever considered where they are now in comparison? Ever considered what was supposed to be in them versus what has now been removed? Ever considered what things we need versus what things we want? Ever considered what things are beneficial versus what things are a detriment to both the student and society? Ever considered what things are necessary to make a school, an education, a student successful in life? What things bring clarity? What things bring confusion? What things bring truth? What things create deception? What is the priority? What should be the priority? What things should be included? What things should be excluded? What things should be added? What things should be removed?

Well today’s reading comes to us from Leviticus 8

Consecration of Aaron and His Sons

1The Lord spoke to Moses, saying, 2″Take Aaron and his sons with him, and the garments and the anointing oil and the bull of the sin offering and the two rams and the basket of unleavened bread. 3And assemble all the congregation at the entrance of the tent of meeting.” 4And Moses did as the Lord commanded him, and the congregation was assembled at the entrance of the tent of meeting.
5And Moses said to the congregation, “This is the thing that the Lord has commanded to be done.” 6And Moses brought Aaron and his sons and washed them with water. 7And he put the coat on him and tied the sash around his waist and clothed him with the robe and put the ephod on him and tied the skillfully woven band of the ephod around him, binding it to him with the band. 8And he placed the breastpiece on him, and in the breastpiece he put the Urim and the Thummim. 9And he set the turban on his head, and on the turban, in front, he set the golden plate, the holy crown, as the Lord commanded Moses.
10Then Moses took the anointing oil and anointed the tabernacle and all that was in it, and consecrated them. 11And he sprinkled some of it on the altar seven times, and anointed the altar and all its utensils and the basin and its stand, to consecrate them. 12And he poured some of the anointing oil on Aaron’s head and anointed him to consecrate him. 13And Moses brought Aaron’s sons and clothed them with coats and tied sashes around their waists and bound caps on them, as the Lord commanded Moses.
14Then he brought the bull of the sin offering, and Aaron and his sons laid their hands on the head of the bull of the sin offering. 15And he killed it, and Moses took the blood, and with his finger put it on the horns of the altar around it and purified the altar and poured out the blood at the base of the altar and consecrated it to make atonement for it. 16And he took all the fat that was on the entrails and the long lobe of the liver and the two kidneys with their fat, and Moses burned them on the altar. 17But the bull and its skin and its flesh and its dung he burned up with fire outside the camp, as the Lord commanded Moses.
18Then he presented the ram of the burnt offering, and Aaron and his sons laid their hands on the head of the ram. 19And he killed it, and Moses threw the blood against the sides of the altar. 20He cut the ram into pieces, and Moses burned the head and the pieces and the fat. 21He washed the entrails and the legs with water, and Moses burned the whole ram on the altar. It was a burnt offering with a pleasing aroma, a food offering for the Lord, as the Lord commanded Moses.
22Then he presented the other ram, the ram of ordination, and Aaron and his sons laid their hands on the head of the ram. 23And he killed it, and Moses took some of its blood and put it on the lobe of Aaron’s right ear and on the thumb of his right hand and on the big toe of his right foot. 24Then he presented Aaron’s sons, and Moses put some of the blood on the lobes of their right ears and on the thumbs of their right hands and on the big toes of their right feet. And Moses threw the blood against the sides of the altar. 25Then he took the fat and the fat tail and all the fat that was on the entrails and the long lobe of the liver and the two kidneys with their fat and the right thigh, 26and out of the basket of unleavened bread that was before the Lord he took one unleavened loaf and one loaf of bread with oil and one wafer and placed them on the pieces of fat and on the right thigh. 27And he put all these in the hands of Aaron and in the hands of his sons and waved them as a wave offering before the Lord. 28Then Moses took them from their hands and burned them on the altar with the burnt offering. This was an ordination offering with a pleasing aroma, a food offering to the Lord. 29And Moses took the breast and waved it for a wave offering before the Lord. It was Moses’ portion of the ram of ordination, as the Lord commanded Moses.
30Then Moses took some of the anointing oil and of the blood that was on the altar and sprinkled it on Aaron and his garments, and also on his sons and his sons’ garments. So he consecrated Aaron and his garments, and his sons and his sons’ garments with him.
31And Moses said to Aaron and his sons, “Boil the flesh at the entrance of the tent of meeting, and there eat it and the bread that is in the basket of ordination offerings, as I commanded, saying, ‘Aaron and his sons shall eat it.’ 32And what remains of the flesh and the bread you shall burn up with fire. 33And you shall not go outside the entrance of the tent of meeting for seven days, until the days of your ordination are completed, for it will take seven days to ordain you. 34As has been done today, the Lord has commanded to be done to make atonement for you. 35At the entrance of the tent of meeting you shall remain day and night for seven days, performing what the Lord has charged, so that you do not die, for so I have been commanded.” 36And Aaron and his sons did all the things that the Lord commanded by Moses.

–from Leviticus 8

Today’s devotional from The Global Impact Bible on the theme of the Bible’s impact on the Academy or Education brings us the topic of the Yale University Seal and Motto. We learn about Yale’s ranking as one of the top universities in the world. We learn about its origin and how back in 1701 it was founded to train ministers in theology and ancient biblical languages. We also learn how it eventually expanded to include the sciences and humanities. They also have the notoriety of becoming the first university in the United States to award a doctorate. Today’s devotional points us to the Yale University Seal and Motto and their biblical inspiration. We see the book in the center of the seal that contains 2 Hebrew words: אוּרִים (Urim) and וְתֻמִּים (Thummim). These were put into the priest breastplate as we see from today’s reading with the purpose of helping them to stay connected to God with wisdom about questions and situations as well as receiving discernment of the will of God. The exact meaning of “Urim and Thummim” is unknown, however, today’s devotional provides us with suggestions for possible interpretations as “guilty and not guilty”, “cursed and innocent”, and “light and truth”. Today’s devotional also includes the school motto which is in Latin and is the phrase “Lux et Veritas” which means “Light and Truth”. We see how the two hebrew words comes out of today’s reading from Leviticus 8:8:

‘And he placed the breastpiece on him, and in the breastpiece he put the Urim and the Thummim. ‘ Leviticus 8:8

It’s amazing all you can find looking up the words, the meanings, the original intent, the purpose, and the history of Yale.

So what do you believe? Have you had a divine encounter? Have you been seeking your purpose? Have you been pursuing the plan for your life? We each pick a way or choose a path which gives us instruction and direction. Will you invite the Holy Spirit into the situation so that you can find grace, receive instruction and allow God to guide your path?

Let’s pray…

the-lords-prayer

Let’s pray…

Sample Sinners Prayer

For those who prayed this for the first time or as a recommitment to God, I celebrate with the angels in heaven that you made the greatest decision of your life. Will you leave a comment so that I know and pray for you? Will you leave a comment or question so we can have a conversation? Look for a local church that is a Bible believing, Bible preaching church that will be able to come alongside you and help you in this journey called life.


Heavenly Father,
I thank You Lord for this new day and for everything that will be in it. Help me Lord with wisdom and discernment for every situation so that I may bring You praise, honor, and glory in and through it all, in Jesus’s name I pray. Amen.

 

 

 

JOHN MILTON, SECOND DEFENCE…(The Bible’s Impact on Literature [August 6])


What is being said of you? What are people hearing about you? If or when they come to find out for themselves, what will they find? What will they learn? Will they satisfied? Will they hear about how God is working in and through you? Will you be able to stay close to God and walk out His plans till the end? Who do you say you are? Who does God say you are?

Let’s stop for a moment to listen to a song before jumping into today’s reading…

Today’s reading comes from 2 Chronicles 9

The Queen of Sheba

1Now when the queen of Sheba heard of the fame of Solomon, she came to Jerusalem to test him with hard questions, having a very great retinue and camels bearing spices and very much gold and precious stones. And when she came to Solomon, she told him all that was on her mind. 2And Solomon answered all her questions. There was nothing hidden from Solomon that he could not explain to her. 3And when the queen of Sheba had seen the wisdom of Solomon, the house that he had built, 4the food of his table, the seating of his officials, and the attendance of his servants, and their clothing, his cupbearers, and their clothing, and his burnt offerings that he offered at the house of the Lord, there was no more breath in her.
5And she said to the king, “The report was true that I heard in my own land of your words and of your wisdom, 6but I did not believe the reports until I came and my own eyes had seen it. And behold, half the greatness of your wisdom was not told me; you surpass the report that I heard. 7Happy are your wives! Happy are these your servants, who continually stand before you and hear your wisdom! 8Blessed be the Lord your God, who has delighted in you and set you on his throne as king for the Lord your God! Because your God loved Israel and would establish them forever, he has made you king over them, that you may execute justice and righteousness.” 9Then she gave the king 120 talents of gold, and a very great quantity of spices, and precious stones. There were no spices such as those that the queen of Sheba gave to King Solomon.
10Moreover, the servants of Hiram and the servants of Solomon, who brought gold from Ophir, brought algum wood and precious stones. 11And the king made from the algum wood supports for the house of the Lord and for the king’s house, lyres also and harps for the singers. There never was seen the like of them before in the land of Judah.
12And King Solomon gave to the queen of Sheba all that she desired, whatever she asked besides what she had brought to the king. So she turned and went back to her own land with her servants.

Solomon’s Wealth

13Now the weight of gold that came to Solomon in one year was 666 talents of gold, 14besides that which the explorers and merchants brought. And all the kings of Arabia and the governors of the land brought gold and silver to Solomon. 15King Solomon made 200 large shields of beaten gold; 600 shekels of beaten gold went into each shield. 16And he made 300 shields of beaten gold; 300 shekels of gold went into each shield; and the king put them in the House of the Forest of Lebanon. 17The king also made a great ivory throne and overlaid it with pure gold. 18The throne had six steps and a footstool of gold, which were attached to the throne, and on each side of the seat were armrests and two lions standing beside the armrests, 19while twelve lions stood there, one on each end of a step on the six steps. Nothing like it was ever made for any kingdom. 20All King Solomon’s drinking vessels were of gold, and all the vessels of the House of the Forest of Lebanon were of pure gold. Silver was not considered as anything in the days of Solomon. 21For the king’s ships went to Tarshish with the servants of Hiram. Once every three years the ships of Tarshish used to come bringing gold, silver, ivory, apes, and peacocks.
22Thus King Solomon excelled all the kings of the earth in riches and in wisdom. 23And all the kings of the earth sought the presence of Solomon to hear his wisdom, which God had put into his mind. 24Every one of them brought his present, articles of silver and of gold, garments, myrrh, spices, horses, and mules, so much year by year. 25And Solomon had 4,000 stalls for horses and chariots, and 12,000 horsemen, whom he stationed in the chariot cities and with the king in Jerusalem. 26And he ruled over all the kings from the Euphrates to the land of the Philistines and to the border of Egypt. 27And the king made silver as common in Jerusalem as stone, and he made cedar as plentiful as the sycamore of the Shephelah. 28And horses were imported for Solomon from Egypt and from all lands.

Solomon’s Death

29Now the rest of the acts of Solomon, from first to last, are they not written in the history of Nathan the prophet, and in the prophecy of Ahijah the Shilonite, and in the visions of Iddo the seer concerning Jeroboam the son of Nebat? 30Solomon reigned in Jerusalem over all Israel forty years. 31And Solomon slept with his fathers and was buried in the city of David his father, and Rehoboam his son reigned in his place.

–from 2 Chronicles 9

Today’s devotional from The Global Impact Bible on the theme of the Bible’s impact on literature brings us the topic of John Milton, Second Defense. We learn in today’s devotional about the English civil war and the end of a time with a monarchy  when King Charles I was executed and Oliver Cromwell ruled as leader of the republic. We also learn about how John Milton was one of the most famous defenders of this commonwealth. We learn about Milton’s writings counter to the pro-monarchy writings by french scholar Claudius Salmasius like Paradise Lost and Defensio Secunda. We learn how in Defensio Secunda he writes about the queen of Sheba when she went to visit Solomon – from our reading today in 2 Chronicles 9:1-12 – and compares the queen of Sheba to the queen of Sweden who was a supporter of Salmasius.

Henceforth, the queen of the south will not be alone renowned in history, for there is a queen of the north, who would not only be worthy to appear in the court of the wise king of the Jews, or any king of equal wisdom; but to whose court others may from all parts repair, to behold so fair a heroine, so bright a pattern of all the royal virtues; and to the crown of whose praise this may well be added, that neither in her conduct nor her appearance, is there any of the forbidding reserve, or the ostentatious parade of royalty.

–from Second Defense – John Milton

So how do you want to be remembered? How do you want to be spoken of while you are still here? Who will you be? Will you live as who you say you are? Will you live as who others say you are? Will you live as who God says you are?

Let’s pray…

Prayer of Salvation Example

For those who prayed this for the first time or as a recommitment to God, I celebrate with the angels in heaven that you made the greatest decision of your life. Will you leave a comment so that I know and pray for you? Will you leave a comment or question so we can have a conversation? Look for a local church that is a Bible believing, Bible preaching church that will be able to come alongside you and help you in this journey called life.


Heavenly Father,
I thank You for this new day and for everything that is in it. I praise You Lord for who You are and who You say I am. I thank You Lord for Your Word that never returns void but always speaks truth and life and helps lead and guide me all the days of my life. Help me today Lord to complete the good works You have prepared in advance for me to accomplish. Help me Lord to go beyond what is seen to complete the tasks You have set for me to accomplish. Give me eyes to see and ears to hear and a heart to obey all that You will lead me and guide me to do today in Jesus’s name I pray. I ask all this so that in and through it all You will receive the praise, the honor, and the glory in Jesus’s name. Amen.

DIES IRAE…(The Bible’s Impact on Music [May 18])


Have you made your choice? Have you chosen well? Have you decided to follow Jesus? Have you decided to make Him Lord and Savior? Will you decide before it is too late? Will you decided before time runs out? Do you know the options? Do you know the choices? Have you read His Word?

Today’s reading is powerful and has had impact on many movies’ music. Let’s jump into today’s reading and contemplate our standing and decision to follow God…

1The word of the Lord that came to Zephaniah the son of Cushi, son of Gedaliah, son of Amariah, son of Hezekiah, in the days of Josiah the son of Amon, king of Judah.

The Coming Judgment on Judah

2 “I will utterly sweep away everything
from the face of the earth,” declares the Lord.
3 “I will sweep away man and beast;
I will sweep away the birds of the heavens
and the fish of the sea,
and the rubble with the wicked.
I will cut off mankind
from the face of the earth,” declares the Lord.
4 “I will stretch out my hand against Judah
and against all the inhabitants of Jerusalem;
and I will cut off from this place the remnant of Baal
and the name of the idolatrous priests along with the priests,
5 those who bow down on the roofs
to the host of the heavens,
those who bow down and swear to the Lord
and yet swear by Milcom,
6 those who have turned back from following the Lord,
who do not seek the Lord or inquire of him.”

The Day of the Lord Is Near

7 Be silent before the Lord God!
For the day of the Lord is near;
the Lord has prepared a sacrifice
and consecrated his guests.
8 And on the day of the Lord‘s sacrifice—
“I will punish the officials and the king’s sons
and all who array themselves in foreign attire.
9 On that day I will punish
everyone who leaps over the threshold,
and those who fill their master’s house
with violence and fraud.
10 “On that day,” declares the Lord,
“a cry will be heard from the Fish Gate,
a wail from the Second Quarter,
a loud crash from the hills.
11 Wail, O inhabitants of the Mortar!
For all the traders are no more;
all who weigh out silver are cut off.
12 At that time I will search Jerusalem with lamps,
and I will punish the men
who are complacent,
those who say in their hearts,
‘The Lord will not do good,
nor will he do ill.’
13 Their goods shall be plundered,
and their houses laid waste.
Though they build houses,
they shall not inhabit them;
though they plant vineyards,
they shall not drink wine from them.”
14 The great day of the Lord is near,
near and hastening fast;
the sound of the day of the Lord is bitter;
the mighty man cries aloud there.
15 A day of wrath is that day,
a day of distress and anguish,
a day of ruin and devastation,
a day of darkness and gloom,
a day of clouds and thick darkness,
16 a day of trumpet blast and battle cry
against the fortified cities
and against the lofty battlements.
17 I will bring distress on mankind,
so that they shall walk like the blind,
because they have sinned against the Lord;
their blood shall be poured out like dust,
and their flesh like dung.
18 Neither their silver nor their gold
shall be able to deliver them
on the day of the wrath of the Lord.
In the fire of his jealousy,
all the earth shall be consumed;
for a full and sudden end
he will make of all the inhabitants of the earth.

Today’s devotional from The Global Impact Bible on the subject of the impact on music speaks of the impact of Zephaniah 1:15-16 which comes from the crisis and doom of God’s judgement for those idolaters and ends with a message of hope for the promise of restoration. We see how this speaks of a day of wrath. We see how today’s devotional shares Dies Irae – a thirteenth century him drawn from Zephaniah 1:15-16. Let’s compare the two…

Zephaniah 1:15-16

‘ A day of wrath is that day, a day of distress and anguish, a day of ruin and devastation, a day of darkness and gloom, a day of clouds and thick darkness, a day of trumpet blast and battle cry against the fortified cities and against the lofty battlements.’

–from Zephaniah 1:15-16

Dies Irae

Dies Irae/Day of Wrath

   DIES irae, dies illa,

   solvet saeculum in favilla,

   teste David cum Sibylla.

   Day of wrath and doom impending,

   David’s word with Sibyl’s blending,

   Heaven and earth in ashes ending.

   Quantus tremor est futurus,

   quando iudex est venturus,

   cuncta stricte discussurus!

 

   O what fear man’s bosom rendeth,

   When from heaven the Judge descendeth,

   On whose sentence all dependeth.

   Tuba mirum spargens sonum

   per sepulcra regionum,

   coget omnes ante thronum.

 

   Wondrous sound the trumpet flingeth,

   Through earth’s sepulchers it ringeth,

   All before the throne it bringeth.

   Mors stupebit et natura,

   cum resurget creatura,

   iudicanti responsura.

 

   Death is struck, and nature quaking,

   All creation is awaking,

   To its Judge an answer making.

   Liber scriptus proferetur,

   in quo totum continetur,

   unde mundus iudicetur.

   Lo, the book exactly worded,

   Wherein all hath been recorded,

   Thence shall judgment be awarded.

   Iudex ergo cum sedebit,

   quidquid latet apparebit:

   nil inultum remanebit.

 

   When the Judge His seat attaineth,

   And each hidden deed arraigneth,

   Nothing unavenged remaineth.

   Quid sum miser tunc dicturus?

   quem patronum rogaturus?

   cum vix iustus sit securus.

   What shall I, frail man, be pleading?

   Who for me be interceding

   When the just are mercy needing?

   Rex tremendae maiestatis,

   qui salvandos salvas gratis,

   salva me, fons pietatis.

 

   King of majesty tremendous,

   Who dost free salvation send us,

   Fount of pity, then befriend us.

   Recordare Iesu pie,

   quod sum causa tuae viae:

   ne me perdas illa die.

 

   Think, kind Jesus, my salvation

   Caused Thy wondrous Incarnation,

   Leave me not to reprobation.

   Quarens me, sedisti lassus:

   redemisti crucem passus:

   tantus labor non sit cassus.

   Faint and weary Thou hast sought me,

   On the Cross of suffering bought me,

   Shall such grace be vainly brought me?

   Iuste iudex ultionis,

   donum fac remissionis,

   ante diem rationis.

 

   Righteous Judge, for sin’s pollution

   Grant Thy gift of absolution,

   Ere that day of retribution.

   Ingemisco, tamquam reus:

   culpa rubet vultus meus:

   supplicanti parce Deus.

 

   Guilty now I pour my moaning,

   All my shame with anguish owning,

   Spare, O God, Thy suppliant groaning.

   Qui Mariam absolvisti,

   et latronem exaudisti,

   mihi quoque spem dedisti.

   Through the sinful woman shriven,

   Through the dying thief forgiven,

   Thou to me a hope hast given.

   Preces meae non sunt dignae:

   sed tu bonus fac benigne,

   ne perenni cremer igne.

   Worthless are my prayers and sighing,

   Yet, good Lord, in grace complying,

   Rescue me from fires undying.

 

   Inter oves locum praesta,

   et ab haedis me sequestra,

   statuens in parte dextera.

   With Thy sheep a place provide me,

   From the goats afar divide me,

   To Thy right hand do Thou guide me.

   Confutatis maledictis,

   flammis acribus addictis.

   voca me cum benedictis.

   When the wicked are confounded,

   Doomed to flames of woe unbounded,

   Call me with Thy Saints surrounded.

 

   Oro supplex et acclinis,

   cor contritum quasi cinis:

   gere curam mei finis.

   Low I kneel with heart’s submission,

   See, like ashes, my contrition,

   Help me in my last condition.

   Lacrimosa dies illa,

   qua resurget ex favilla.

   iudicandus homo reus:

   huic ergo parce Deus.

   Ah! That day of tears and mourning,

   From the dust of earth returning,

   Man for judgment must prepare him,

   Spare, O God, in mercy spare him.

   Pie Iesu Domine,

   dona eis requiem. Amen.

   Lord, all-pitying, Jesus blest,

   Grant them Thine eternal rest.  Amen.

Latin and Translation from the 1958 Marian Missal for daily Mass by Sylvester P. Juergens, S.M. Doctor of Sacred Theology

Today’s devotional points to how this is a part of the standard Catholic requiem. It also shares how it has been adapted by many classical composers like Mozart and Verdi. We also see how composer John Williams included the music of Dies Irae in the soundtrack of The Empire strikes back. When I did a search to find it, I also learned that it has gotten used in other movies too. Here is a link / preview of what I found on YouTube…

God’s Word has great impact on the world of music. God’s Word has impact on all aspects of life. So how will you receive the gift of God through His Word? Will you make and take time to read His Word and get wisdom and discernment from not only His Love Letter to you but also His owner’s manual for life?

Before we close let’s pray together…

Sample Sinners Prayer

Was this the first time or a recommitment of your life to Jesus? Are you still seeking and searching? Leave me a comment or a question and we can celebrate or talk about it. God’s amazing and His Word reinforces it with power and impact throughout the generations and will continue to until His return.


Heavenly Father,
I thank You Lord for this new day and for everything in it. I thank You Lord that You have a plan and a purpose for me and my life. I give this day into Your hands for Your purpose and Your plans. Help me Lord to live out today in a way that I will get to hear the words “well done my good and faithful servant”. Help me with wisdom and discernment, direction and instruction, correction and redirection so that all that I think, all that I say, and all that I do will point people to You and will bring You all the praise, the honor, and the glory in Jesus’ name. Amen.

 

 

Does God’s Word support your cause?


If you consider your cause, does God’s Word support it? Does God’s Word direct it? Does God’s Word claim it? Does God’s Word proclaim it? Does God’s Word declare it?

Over time there are cases where people will use God’s Word for their purposes rather than have God’s Word give them their purpose. The challenge is to make sure that we are doing God’s will rather than trying to change what God’s Word is really telling us. Are we pursuing what God’s Word says or are we trying to use God’s Word to get what we want?

I know that in the case of me changing jobs, I took God’s Word as direction. I know that in the case of me having a promised son, I took God’s Word as confirmation. I know that in the case of camp, I took God’s Word as instruction.

Let’s check out today’s reading from Joshua 4…

Twelve Memorial Stones from the Jordan

‘When all the nation had finished passing over the Jordan, the Lord said to Joshua, “Take twelve men from the people, from each tribe a man, and command them, saying, ‘Take twelve stones from here out of the midst of the Jordan, from the very place where the priests’ feet stood firmly, and bring them over with you and lay them down in the place where you lodge tonight.'” Then Joshua called the twelve men from the people of Israel, whom he had appointed, a man from each tribe. And Joshua said to them, “Pass on before the ark of the Lord your God into the midst of the Jordan, and take up each of you a stone upon his shoulder, according to the number of the tribes of the people of Israel, that this may be a sign among you. When your children ask in time to come, ‘What do those stones mean to you?’ then you shall tell them that the waters of the Jordan were cut off before the ark of the covenant of the Lord . When it passed over the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan were cut off. So these stones shall be to the people of Israel a memorial forever.” And the people of Israel did just as Joshua commanded and took up twelve stones out of the midst of the Jordan, according to the number of the tribes of the people of Israel, just as the Lord told Joshua. And they carried them over with them to the place where they lodged and laid them down there. And Joshua set up twelve stones in the midst of the Jordan, in the place where the feet of the priests bearing the ark of the covenant had stood; and they are there to this day. For the priests bearing the ark stood in the midst of the Jordan until everything was finished that the Lord commanded Joshua to tell the people, according to all that Moses had commanded Joshua. The people passed over in haste. And when all the people had finished passing over, the ark of the Lord and the priests passed over before the people. The sons of Reuben and the sons of Gad and the half-tribe of Manasseh passed over armed before the people of Israel, as Moses had told them. About 40,000 ready for war passed over before the Lord for battle, to the plains of Jericho. On that day the Lord exalted Joshua in the sight of all Israel, and they stood in awe of him just as they had stood in awe of Moses, all the days of his life. And the Lord said to Joshua, “Command the priests bearing the ark of the testimony to come up out of the Jordan.” So Joshua commanded the priests, “Come up out of the Jordan.” And when the priests bearing the ark of the covenant of the Lord came up from the midst of the Jordan, and the soles of the priests’ feet were lifted up on dry ground, the waters of the Jordan returned to their place and overflowed all its banks, as before. The people came up out of the Jordan on the tenth day of the first month, and they encamped at Gilgal on the east border of Jericho. And those twelve stones, which they took out of the Jordan, Joshua set up at Gilgal. And he said to the people of Israel, “When your children ask their fathers in times to come, ‘What do these stones mean?’ then you shall let your children know, ‘Israel passed over this Jordan on dry ground.’ For the Lord your God dried up the waters of the Jordan for you until you passed over, as the Lord your God did to the Red Sea, which he dried up for us until we passed over, so that all the peoples of the earth may know that the hand of the Lord is mighty, that you may fear the Lord your God forever.”

–from Joshua 4:1-24

Today’s devotional from the Global Impact Bible on the subject of human rights (opposing slavery) comes in relation to Joshua 4:21…

‘And he said to the people of Israel, “When your children ask their fathers in times to come, ‘What do these stones mean?’ Joshua 4:21

and speaks of Denmark Vesey a man who bought his own freedom from slavery and then worked hard to try to free other slaves from their bondage too and gain their freedom and independence. People thought he was trying to revolt and they hanged him in 1822. Today’s devotional also points to devotional for Joshua 5:4…

‘And this is the reason why Joshua circumcised them: all the males of the people who came out of Egypt, all the men of war, had died in the wilderness on the way after they had come out of Egypt.  — Joshua 5:4 

 

 

We need to stand for what is right! We need to stand for what is good! We need to stand for God’s purpose and plans! We need to stand against evil! We need to stand against what is wrong!

As I read this I remember a high school exchange trip where I was introduced to a family who had escaped South Africa and apartheid. I got to spend a week with them and later had my new friend come spend time at my house. It got my blood boiling at the injustice and inhumanity. It got me so upset. I remember one trip my dad and I did back to the big city and there was a march against apartheid and saying to my dad that I wondered if my friend might be around and he was and I got to see him again.

It upsets me what injustice has happened throughout history. It brings me great joy to see that injustice removed – be it in South Africa or around the world in the form of slavery. We need to stand up for what is right! We need to stand up for what is good! We need to stand on the solid foundation of God’s Word! We need to build upon the cornerstone of Jesus! We need to walk with the Lord and He will make a way even when there doesn’t seem to be a way! So let’s stand! Let’s come together in unity!


Heavenly Father,
I thank You Lord that You were able to give me eyes to see and ears to hear when I was totally unaware. I thank You Lord that You made a way even when there didn’t seem to be a way. I thank You Lord that in spite of the bad things that take place on this earth that You are in control. Help us today Lord to step up and stand up for You, Your Word, and Your purposes and plans! Help me Lord to be the man You created me to be! Help me Lord to not grow weary in doing good! Help me Lord to live a life that will bring You all the praise, the honor, and the glory in Jesus’ name. Amen.

Know your audience!


Are you read up? Are you engaged? Are you involved? Are you connected? Are you reaching out? Are you making the effort? Are you seeking in order to find? Are you researching in order to learn? Are you listening in order to understand? Are you taking the time? Do you really know the people?

Feb 28 - Know your audience - How to know your audience - Titus 1

Do you believe in purity? Do you realize there pure and impure things? Do you take what you hear and measure it against God’s Word to discern the truth and validity of it? Do you stand for the truth and rebuke lies? Since your life is speaking the truth of who you are and what you believe, is it speaking to faith and truth and hope in Jesus? Or is it speaking something different? Are your words and your actions in conflict? Are you taking in God’s Word but not following through on the good works He has prepared in advance for you to accomplish and neglecting them?

Do you understand the people, the culture, the beliefs of the people around you? Are you willing to learn it so as to build relationships that God can use and help you to plant seeds and water them over time until the right time appears? Can you be patient and show true love to the world around you? Do you remember what love it? True love I mean? Let’s reflect on it for a moment.

Love is…

Remember that love never fails

Are you trying to live a life of true and unconditional love? The type of love God has for you and is pouring into you so that you can then pour it into the people he brings into your life?

Today’s reading comes from Titus 1…

Greeting

‘Paul, a servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ, for the sake of the faith of God’s elect and their knowledge of the truth, which accords with godliness, in hope of eternal life, which God, who never lies, promised before the ages began and at the proper time manifested in his word through the preaching with which I have been entrusted by the command of God our Savior; To Titus, my true child in a common faith: Grace and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Savior.

Qualifications for Elders

‘This is why I left you in Crete, so that you might put what remained into order, and appoint elders in every town as I directed you— if anyone is above reproach, the husband of one wife, and his children are believers and not open to the charge of debauchery or insubordination. For an overseer, as God’s steward, must be above reproach. He must not be arrogant or quick-tempered or a drunkard or violent or greedy for gain, but hospitable, a lover of good, self-controlled, upright, holy, and disciplined. He must hold firm to the trustworthy word as taught, so that he may be able to give instruction in sound doctrine and also to rebuke those who contradict it. For there are many who are insubordinate, empty talkers and deceivers, especially those of the circumcision party. They must be silenced, since they are upsetting whole families by teaching for shameful gain what they ought not to teach. One of the Cretans, a prophet of their own, said, “Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, lazy gluttons.” This testimony is true. Therefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith, not devoting themselves to Jewish myths and the commands of people who turn away from the truth. To the pure, all things are pure, but to the defiled and unbelieving, nothing is pure; but both their minds and their consciences are defiled. They profess to know God, but they deny him by their works. They are detestable, disobedient, unfit for any good work.

— from Titus 1

From Titus 1, the Global Impact Bible for today’s devotional points towards Titus 1:12-15 which points to “Studying the culture”…

‘One of the Cretans, a prophet of their own, said, “Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, lazy gluttons.” This testimony is true. Therefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith, not devoting themselves to Jewish myths and the commands of people who turn away from the truth. To the pure, all things are pure, but to the defiled and unbelieving, nothing is pure; but both their minds and their consciences are defiled.

— from Titus 1:12-15 

It speaks to the importance of studying the culture. You can’t walk into a new place and be able to speak life into it if you aren’t prepared and don’t understand the culture. Interestingly enough in the history of the world, we find that there are some leaders who discourage people from reading anything except the Bible and sacred books. Through Paul speaking to Titus, we see that they had extensive knowledge of the secular text. We see that with that knowledge they could walk into a situation and be able to speak the truth as it related to the people and share the hope of Jesus Christ through it. A good example where this gets called out is through Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz who was a Mexican poet who used this fact in defence of her literary works. She even references Titus 1:12 as part of it. So we need to be educated. We need to be read up. We need to be ready for what is yet to come. So let’s be prepared! Let’s be ready for the good works that God has prepared in advance for us to do! Let’s not grow weary in doing good works! Let’s let our lives shine the reality of Jesus by the good works we do to His praise, honor, and glory!


Heavenly Father,
I thank You for this new day and for all that is within it. I praise You Lord for the reality that the Earth and everything in it are yours. I take hold of the truth which comes from Your Word and know that it is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path. Help me Lord to have eyes to see and ears to hear and a mind to learn so that I can be prepared to speak truth and life in love to the world around me. Help me Lord to not be blinded by the lies of the devil or the world but that through this life which is an education I am able to accomplish the good works You have prepared in advance for me to accomplish. Help me to be a good steward of every good and precious gift from You so that in the end, I may come before Your throne and hear well done my good and faithful servant. Help me Lord to shine for You! Help me Lord to pour into the lives of the people around me in order that You will receive the praise, the honor, and the glory in Jesus’ name. Amen.