Re blogging from Practical Bible Teaching. This is a good word for today. Lord open our eyes, ears and minds to Your Word. Turn hearts to You.
Re blogging from Practical Bible Teaching. This is a good word for today. Lord open our eyes, ears and minds to Your Word. Turn hearts to You.
Reflections from Jeremiah, Mark, Romans and 1 Corinthians:
[Jer 7:21-34 NLT] 21 This is what the LORD of Heaven’s Armies, the God of Israel, says: “Take your burnt offerings and your other sacrifices and eat them yourselves!
22 When I led your ancestors out of Egypt, it was not burnt offerings and sacrifices I wanted from them.
23 This is what I told them: ‘Obey me, and I will be your God, and you will be my people. Do everything as I say, and all will be well!’
24 “But my people would not listen to me. They kept doing whatever they wanted, following the stubborn desires of their evil hearts. They went backward instead of forward.
25 From the day your ancestors left Egypt until now, I have continued to send my servants, the prophets–day in and day out.
26 But my people have not listened to me or even tried to hear. They have been stubborn and sinful–even worse than their ancestors.
27 “Tell them all this, but do not expect them to listen. Shout out your warnings, but do not expect them to respond
. 28 Say to them, ‘This is the nation whose people will not obey the LORD their God and who refuse to be taught. Truth has vanished from among them; it is no longer heard on their lips.
29 Shave your head in mourning, and weep alone on the mountains. For the LORD has rejected and forsaken this generation that has provoked his fury.’
30 “The people of Judah have sinned before my very eyes,” says the LORD. “They have set up their abominable idols right in the Temple that bears my name, defiling it.
31 They have built pagan shrines at Topheth, the garbage dump in the valley of Ben-Hinnom, and there they burn their sons and daughters in the fire. I have never commanded such a horrible deed; it never even crossed my mind to command such a thing!
32 So beware, for the time is coming,” says the LORD, “when that garbage dump will no longer be called Topheth or the valley of Ben-Hinnom, but the Valley of Slaughter. They will bury the bodies in Topheth until there is no more room for them.
33 The bodies of my people will be food for the vultures and wild animals, and no one will be left to scare them away.
34 I will put an end to the happy singing and laughter in the streets of Jerusalem. The joyful voices of bridegrooms and brides will no longer be heard in the towns of Judah. The land will lie in complete desolation.
In Jeremiah we hear from God concerning his people. I believe as God does not change, we can learn from this passage what pleases him and what doesn’t even for us today, for we are his people. In one part he says: from verse 23 –
“Pay attention to what I say. Then I will be your God, and you will be my people. In everything live according to the way that I order you, so that things will go well with you.” from CJB version.
He goes on to say they won’t /didn’t listen or pay attention. My question from this is, “who are we listening to; what are we paying attention to?” This calls for serious reflection and searching of the heart. What is our source? News? Social Media? Friends? Co-workers? Instructors? or God? Who do we spend the most time with?
This is a time of extreme need to know scripture; what God says…to pray; fight in the spiritual realm against the darkness that is taking over the land…How do we spend our time? energy? That will show the truth to us of who we listen to.
God goes on to suggest we mourn for our lack of attention and what it has brought. The actions of his people at that time brought disrespect, destruction, ruination. In chapter 9 he speaks to the boaster; if you must boast let it be that you know and understand God…Can we boast in that? The changes in our present society; even in the church say no…
Reading in Mark:
[Mar 12:28-34 NLT] 28 One of the teachers of religious law was standing there listening to the debate. He realized that Jesus had answered well, so he asked, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?” 29 Jesus replied, “The most important commandment is this: ‘Listen, O Israel! The LORD our God is the one and only LORD. 30 And you must love the LORD your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength.’ 31 The second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ No other commandment is greater than these.” 32 The teacher of religious law replied, “Well said, Teacher. You have spoken the truth by saying that there is only one God and no other. 33 And I know it is important to love him with all my heart and all my understanding and all my strength, and to love my neighbor as myself. This is more important than to offer all of the burnt offerings and sacrifices required in the law.” 34 Realizing how much the man understood, Jesus said to him, “You are not far from the Kingdom of God.” And after that, no one dared to ask him any more questions.
Yeshua brings us back to where we need to be; it is a restatement of what God has said in Jeremiah; we are to be centered on God with all our being. Acknowledge who he is and what he requires.
“Sh’ma Yisra’el, Adonai Elohiemu, Adonai echad ( hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one), and you are to love Adonai your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your understanding, and with all your strength.’ …’You are to love your neighbor as yourself.” from CJB
[Rom 12:1-2 NLT] 1 And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice–the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him. 2 Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.
Paul clarifies or adds that we are the sacrifice God desires. Our bodies, a living sacrifice (that includes physical self, spiritual self, our mind, will and emotions). We are to give all to him. Do you see a thread of instruction here? What does the Lord require of you, oh man? All of you.
In Corinthians 1:
[1Co 10:14-23 NLT] 14 So, my dear friends, flee from the worship of idols. 15 You are reasonable people. Decide for yourselves if what I am saying is true. 16 When we bless the cup at the Lord’s Table, aren’t we sharing in the blood of Christ? And when we break the bread, aren’t we sharing in the body of Christ? 17 And though we are many, we all eat from one loaf of bread, showing that we are one body. 18 Think about the people of Israel. Weren’t they united by eating the sacrifices at the altar? 19 What am I trying to say? Am I saying that food offered to idols has some significance, or that idols are real gods? 20 No, not at all. I am saying that these sacrifices are offered to demons, not to God. And I don’t want you to participate with demons. 21 You cannot drink from the cup of the Lord and from the cup of demons, too. You cannot eat at the Lord’s Table and at the table of demons, too. 22 What? Do we dare to rouse the Lord’s jealousy? Do you think we are stronger than he is? 23 You say, “I am allowed to do anything”–but not everything is good for you. You say, “I am allowed to do anything”–but not everything is beneficial.
Paul reminds us that we are participating with Christ, in Christ. With the participation comes responsibilities… Again the questions:
Who are we listening to? Who are we paying attention to? How do we know? How does it manifest in our lives? Are we God’s people? Can the unbeliever tell? Can we tell? What does God see?
Matthew 28:19,20. Therefore go and make people from all nations into disciples, immersing them into the reality of the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost, and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you.
A well-known scripture for most Christians? One that is used to mobilize believers and leaders to ‘win souls for Christ ‘. But it appears some parts of the verses are ignored. Addressing that situation is a prophetic speaker in a recent blog…
I Went to Hell and was Stunned by What I Saw; JeremiahJohnson
In what he shared is the following:
“Because those that worked miracles, prophesied and cast out demons never preached the full gospel of Jesus Christ which is the message of repentance. They were so in love with the gifts that I had given them that people became trophies and souvenirs to them. When my power would manifest in their ministries, they would tell people that I loved them, but never that they needed to repent for their sins. I tell you that a great deception will sweep over the signs and wonders movement in the earth. ”
What is the full gospel of Jesus Christ? What is the Good News? The disciples shared the message Jesus gave them. It includes “how then shall we live…” Repentance and holiness go hand-in-hand with forgiveness, love and salvation. What is forgiven if not what is repented of and that by definition means change; no longer doing what has been forgiven…!
Should we take the warning given? The scripture referenced for the warning is also found in Matthew…the words of Jesus; “depart from me, I never knew you. ” Is part of the knowing obedience to His words, all of them?
Scripture from CJB version. Complete post by Jeremiah Johnson found on his Facebook page.
A recent post encouraged the reader to be their own cheerleader. The intent on inquiry was to encourage the reader, lift them up. This sounds good but on closer inspection it is a subtle way of turning the recipient away from the Lord and toward self. Scripture does not tell us to boast of ourselves. In fact, it states the opposite. Psalm 34:2 I will boast only in the Lord; let all who are helpless take heart. We receive the ability to love our neighbors when we become the new creature in Him. Jeremiah 9:24, But those who wish to boast should boast in this alone; that they truly know me and understand that I am the Lord. In Romans 15:18 we read, Yet I dare not boast about anything except what Christ has done through me. And finally in 1Corinthians 1:31 it states therefore as the Scriptures say, if you want to boast, boast only about the Lord. We should be careful to always direct each other toward Christ not self. Our present day society has a love affair with self going on. Church, don’t be guilty of joining that mentality. Rather have and seek the mind of Christ.
This is an excellent post encouraging the believer to be strong in the Lord and stand against the attacks that come. Take the time to read…
Why do we think it so strange when the people we are closest to turn their backs on us? We are living in a time where things are NOT gray, they are black and white, light and dark, the lines are not blurred. We are in a time when people call good evil and evil good. Why do we find this strange when the Bible tells us this is going to happen?
I am writing this post because my heart is heavy and feeling broken. I wont go into details, but suffice it to say, because of the truth of Gods word, I am losing people that were once so close to me. I am no way claiming to be perfect or super spiritual, but I do know Gods word and there are some thing that are non-negotiable. Does this mean I love them less? No! But, listen to me…
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From 1 Peter:
1Therefore, rid yourselves of all malice, of all deceit, hypocrisy and envy, and of all the ways there are of speaking against people; 2and be like newborn babies, thirsty for the pure milk of the Word; so that by it, you may grow up into deliverance. 3For you have tasted that Adonai is good.
9Taste, and see that Adonai is good.
How blessed are those who take refuge in him!
In the fellowship groupings of Christ there should be no malice, deceit, hypocrisy, or envy. There should be none of the ways men use to speak against people. It is more effective to speak, if it is necessary, about what is good; that would be teaching practice in the opposing values of malice, deceit, hypocrisy and envy. Social media give an accurate picture of the heart of society with an abundance of what should not be. There is ample evidence of backbiting, malice, deceit, hypocrisy and envy.
This darkness can be fought by the same means that assist the believer in the process of growing in the spirit. Peter says be thirsty for the pure milk of the Word for by it the believer will grow up into deliverance from these destructive ways. Initial reuniting with the God of creation from the sin bound life brings a taste of Him that is good. He intends that the believer get more than just a taste.
Malice is the “desire to cause pain for the satisfaction of doing harm.” It comes in many forms: cattiness, hatefulness, meanness, spite, abusiveness, cruelty. The opposite of malice then, which one would expect to see demonstrated in fellowships of Christ are: devotion, love, amiability, civility, cordiality, friendliness, hospitality. The extent to which malice shows up in the social mainstream demands its opposing values be in full force in the fellowship of believers.
Deceit is the inclination or practice of misleading others through lies or trickery. It too comes in many ways, more subversive because of their nature. It comes or shows up as cunning, foxiness, dishonesty, furtiveness. The opposites for which the fellowship of believers should be known are: candor, directness, frankness, openness. These may make the believer seem childish or naïve in a culture full of deceit that is practiced without judgment.
Hypocrisy is the pretending of having virtues, principles or beliefs that one in fact does not have. It can show up as insincerity, piousness, dishonesty, self-righteousness. This is a term often used too loosely with the intent to attack. Its opposites are truthfulness, artlessness, naturalness, genuineness and sincerity. When truth is presented in a world that is used to judgmental statements, it often attracts the attack that calls the bearer of truth, one who practices hypocrisy. This term was used by Jesus to call out the need for correction among those who claimed to know God but followed the teachings of men.
Peter calls the believer to be like newborn babes who taste the mother’s milk and want more. The believer will grow into honesty, candor, openness, truthfulness, genuineness, without an agenda other than to seek the truth of the Word of God, “thirsty for the pure milk of the Word.”
“Taste and see” leads to a vulnerable state of being, as a newborn open to criticism, cunning, attempts to discredit. The believer, however, can identify the unseen source of these attempts is the enemy who would destroy this babe. The infant is not defenseless; it has a Father who has given an arsenal of weapons to use against the attacks. This infant can “grow up into deliverance” by the Word of God.
Taste and see that Adonai is good. How blessed are those who take refuge in him. – Psalmist.
Pray – Those who seek Adonai lack nothing good. It shows in their lifestyle. It shows in their relationships.
Repent – I repent for those times I engaged in actions that could be called malicious or deceitful.
Ask – I have tasted and the Lord is good. Teach me the fear of Adonai. Keep my tongue from evil and my lips from deceiving talk.
Yes – I will bless Adonai at all times; his praise will always be in my mouth. Psalm 34
Source: 1 Peter and Psalms
22Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth, so that you have a sincere love for your brothers, love each other deeply, with all your heart. 23You have been born again not from some seed that will decay, but from one that cannot decay, through the living Word of God that lasts forever. 24For
all humanity is like grass,
all its glory is like a wildflower —
the grass withers, and the flower falls off;
25but the Word of Adonai lasts forever.
Moreover, this Word is the Good News which has been proclaimed to you.
44For I am Adonai your God; therefore, consecrate yourselves and be holy, for I am holy; and do not defile yourselves with any kind of swarming creature that moves along the ground. (Maftir) 45For I am Adonai, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt to be your God. Therefore you are to be holy, because I am holy.
“Speak to the entire community of Isra’el; tell them, ‘You people are to be holy because I, Adonai your God, am holy.
7Therefore consecrate yourselves — you people must be holy, because I am Adonai your God. (RY: vii, LY: vi) 8Observe my regulations, and obey them; I am Adonai, who sets you apart to be holy.
6A voice says, “Proclaim!”
And I answer, “What should I proclaim?”
“All humanity is merely grass,
all its kindness like wildflowers:
7the grass dries up, the flower fades,
when a wind from Adonai blows on it.
Surely the people are grass!
8The grass dries up, the flower fades;
but the word of our God will stand forever.”
Obedience to the truth purifies. The truth must be known to be obeyed. This truth is Christ. Jesus said “obey my words” and the words he spoke were commands to love one another. Deeply.
This is a call to holiness; the call begins with an imperative statement; consecrate yourself. Separate from what is of the earth. What is of the earth, all humanity, is doomed to fail, to cease being.
do not defile yourselves with any kind of swarming creature that moves along the ground.
All humanity is merely grass,
8The grass dries up, the flower fades;
What is holy – of God – will last, will endure beyond time.
Part of this holiness, most likely a major portion, is love. Jesus said “love your God and love your neighbor.” This is a spiritual love that can love deeply without corrupting or causing pain. It is a love that comes from the whole being; that would include: words spoken, actions, thoughts.
love each other deeply,
Jesus lived in this manner. God loves in this manner. This is not a gateway to leniency; this demands discipline. Holy as God is holy. This requires knowing who God is; with that comes knowledge of who the people of God are to be.
Pray – God, You are holy; You are love that is beyond full understanding; You are beyond what words can describe. Ephesians 3
Repent – I repent for casual attitudes when approaching you. I revere you, adore you, bow down before you, You are worthy O God.
Ask – Search our hearts, know us, open ears to Your voice and eyes to Your glory. Psalms
Yes – Thank you for mercy and grace. Thank you for forgiveness and redemption.
Source: 1Peter, Leviticus, Isaiah
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