The Sum of All Things

Col1-16.jpgThe Apostle John said, “Jesus did many other things as well.  If every one of them were written down, I suppose that even the whole world would not have room for the books that would be written.” (John 21:25).  Many may consider this a figurative exaggeration by John. However, consider the depth of meaning that is contained in the entire Bible, symbolic, historical, prophetic and spiritual.  The history alone spans over five thousand years of God establishing and choosing the descendants of Abraham to be His select people through whom He would demonstrate His very nature and character.  “For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope.” (Rom. 15:4).  Archeology has confirmed much of the Bible’s historical content, if any of it could be physically proven to be otherwise, the God haters would have never ceased to proclaim it.  In fact, periodically they make new findings to that effect, but these are always debunked and we see the truth of scripture.

Another prism of God’s truth presented in the Bible is that of prophecy.  God chooses to tell us what He will do in advance, so that when it happens we will remember that He said so and take note.

There is a vast reserve of truth that is embodied in biblical prophecy spanning the past, present, and future.  The truths and insights into the infinite and eternal God Almighty that are revealed through prophecy are hardly touched.  Prophecy has roots in the supernatural just as the Spiritual realm is not of this world.

Another prism of God’s truth is seen with Spiritual understanding.  Yeshua said, “The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing.  The words I have spoken to you—they are full of the Spirit and life.” (John 6:63).  “When the Advocate comes, whom I will send to you from the Father—the Spirit of truth who goes out from the Father—he will testify about me.” (John 15:26).  There are physical as well as Spiritual elements, events, and understanding.  They coexist in the master plan of the Sovereign God who works out everything from the end to the beginning.  When Yeshua said His Kingdom was not of this world he was referring to His Spiritual Kingdom.  The essence of all truth is spiritual because God is Spirit and those who worship Him must do so in Spirit and Truth.  Truth is reality, but reality extends far beyond that which we know through our physical senses.  Each miracle that Yeshua performed is full of Spiritual meaning and purpose. The Jewish laws, the temple and all its contents have deep symbolic and spiritual meaning.

We have history, prophecy, religious law and practice, people, events both natural and supernatural, given through angels and unnamed heavenly messengers, priest and prophets, ordinary peasants, kings and wise men.  The vast revelation of God’s work, message, and character shown, stated and demonstrated in and through Yeshua the Messiah, including all his recorded statements and actions, continue to the end of time, because He rose from the dead and lives forever interceding for the saints.

Then, there is the period of the Church and the Apostles, the compilation of the Bible, with its enduring transcription, the historical events of the saints down through history, much of it unrecorded or compiled.  The work of the Holy Spirit through revivals, massive, local and individual in billions of believers who have themselves lived out the message and life of Messiah Yeshua.  Finally, in the last days with fulfillment of remaining scriptural prophecy, culminating in the most turbulent period of human existence before and/or during the return of Yeshua Messiah to the earth and the final physical battle of Armageddon and associated spiritual events bringing forth the redemption of creation itself.  Every event, every word, every person, everything will come together to reveal the unfathomable wisdom, power, majesty and sovereignty of God Almighty.  (Col. 1: 15-20).  To Him be all praise, glory and honor forever and ever, amen.

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The Table of the Lord

tableshewbreadGod made us so that we eat to live, so He made a world of food for us.  Yet, we are not like cattle or horses that graze the grass upon which they walk.  We eat at a table, generally and usually. When Yeshua fed the multitudes in the wilderness there were no tables, so he ordered them to gather together into groups.  This is a central part of the ordering of the Lord – that we gather together to eat and that before the Lord. We must work for our food, it’s there and in great abundance and variety, but it must be gathered, harvested, grown, hunted, shepherded, sown, prepared, caught, cooked, picked, mixed, milked, washed, soaked, sliced, etc.  Even manna from heaven Read More »

Get Back Up

1John1-9-570x280.jpg“For a just man falleth seven times, and riseth up again: but the wicked shall fall into mischief. ” Proverbs 24:16.  Although this verse is primarily speaking about a just man falling into trouble rather than sin, it still has an application to Christians which commit “acts” of sin but confess them and then get back up onto the straight and narrow path.  We know that if we confess our sins God with forgive and cleanse us. I John 1:9.

C.S. Lewis in “Mere Christianity” notes that perfect virtue will not be obtained by any merely human efforts but only with God’s help.  He goes on to say – “After each failure, ask forgiveness, pick yourself up, and try again.  Very often Read More »

Don’t Get Satisfied

The-Canaanite-Woman-Insistent-PrayerAn important thing I learned selling, is not to get satisfied.  This seems strange, perhaps wrong, but it is right in this context.  When you are selling, you have little control over actually making a sale, if you’re honest in your self-appraisal.  So, when you make a sale or two or three or four in a short period of time, you have a natural tendency, at some point to be satisfied, take it easy and stop.  The law of averages reminds us that every day is not a banner day, so we need those banner days in order to carry us through the lean days and average Read More »

I Am Not Who I Seem

3d9337d735f00b23b993d88c1780dbdc--holy-spirit-god-isMy weakness and obscurity hide my true identity.  Like a plain blade of grass I blend into the vast lawn of humanity.  My true self is further concealed by the shadows of the great and powerful, caused as the light catches their image at angles to cast a tall and wide caricature of themselves.  I lie down and bow low before my family, whom I serve at my Father’s request. The children and infants are small indeed, to whom this world seems populated entirely by giants who carry then about as a sack of potatoes.  So I get down on my knees and see the small one’s eye to eye, and place my ear close to hear their soft voices.  The simple wonder and delight of children is not foreign or beneath my interest. I share Read More »

Thoughts – Part 2

maxresdefaultGod knows our thoughts.

“You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar.  You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways.  Before a word is on my tongue you, Lord, know it completely.” (Ps. 139: 2-4).

“Some men brought to him a paralyzed man, lying on a mat.  When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the man, ‘Take heart, son; your sins are forgiven.’  At this, some of the teachers of the law said to themselves, ‘This fellow is blaspheming!’  Knowing their thoughts, Jesus Read More »

Thoughts – Part 1

33337-covering-eyes-and-ears-1200.1200w.tnOne thing about getting older is that you have more history to think about and  more time to re-think it.  A coworker once explained to me that he felt he lived his life in his head thinking about things.  If your mind is not engaged in a particular activity, it will be filled with something.  Trying to clear your mind is like trying not to think about a pink elephant, you are flooded with those same thoughts.  We can influence our thinking patterns, but can we actually control our thoughts?  If we can, we could likely control much more of our feelings, plans, opinions, and actions.  However, controlling a thought Read More »

Thomas a Sign

17-04-23-Serodine_Doubting_ThomasThomas was a disciple of Yeshua and one of the twelve apostles.  To many he is remembered as “Doubting Thomas”, based on an event after Yeshua’s resurrection.  “Now Thomas (also known as Didymus), one of the Twelve, was not with the disciples when Jesus came.  So the other disciples told him, ‘We have seen the Lord!’  But he said to them, ‘Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.’  A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them.  Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, ‘Peace be with you!’  Then he said to Thomas, ‘Put your finger here; see my hands.  Reach out Read More »

How to Finish the Race With Joy

92818945The Apostle Paul described life as a race and declared that he had finished his race with joy.  How can we, like Paul, finish our race – our life with joy?

  • Run your race with your eye on the prize – don’t compare your ministry to others.  As humans, our eyes can only focus in one direction. We can either focus straight ahead, up or down, left or right.  If we are running a race, our focus should be straight ahead, toward the finish line.  Runners who look elsewhere will slow down, stumble or get out of their lane (and disqualified). Likewise, Christians should focus on their own ministry.  Don’t waste time
  • Read More »

The Power of Forgiveness

forgiveness2“Brothers and sisters, if someone is caught in a sin, you who live by the Spirit should restore that person gently.  But watch yourselves, or you also may be tempted.” (Gal. 6:1). This scripture is deep in truth and power.  I’m reading “Total Forgiveness”, by R.T. Kendall, which is an outstanding book so far.  In it he describes a scenario that directly illustrates the significance of this scripture.  “A few years ago two elders had the task of approaching a man in their church who was in an adulterous relationship.  On their way to the man’s house, one elder said to the other, ‘Do you believe that you too could fall Read More »

A Fountain of Life

7cb632c7ffdc0b02862f0f3ec58e2938--isaiah--beautiful-things“…and provide for those who grieve in Zion— to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord for the display of his splendor.” (Isa. 61:3).

This is just one verse, but Messiah Yeshua read it in the congregation and proclaimed it fulfilled.  I like to take God’s word literally, unless obviously figurative, and I like to take it as though it applies to me.  I could occasionally be wrong in these perspectives and be disappointed, but the alternative is to risk unbelief and that is a very difficult Read More »

The Poor in Spirit

poor_in_spirit.pngBlessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven.” Matthew 5:3.  “Poor in spirit” translated here literally means “to crouch or cower as one helpless.”  In Galatians 4:9 it is translated “beggarly.”  It is a humble spirit that all believers should have where they understand that only through God’s grace can they be saved and their lives have any meaning.  This verse calls on Christians to recognize that there is no room for pride in their lives or any faith in themselves to be good or otherwise worthy without God.

John McArthur has described poor in spirit as “The opposite of self-sufficiency.  This speaks of the deep humility of recognizing Read More »

Contrasting Actions

065-065-jesus-at-the-door-mediumI recalled the words of a song, by Children of the day, “New Life”, that says, “I’m so glad you decided to turn your life over to Jesus. I’m so glad you decided to let Him in”. The Lord talked a lot about His Children being in Him and He in us. “Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.” (Rev. 3:20). God is good beyond description, His glory and majesty are too marvelous for human eyes to behold. He is love, unlimited and unconditional. Therefore, without question having God come in and dwell in us must be desirable, but He stands at the door, knocks and speaks. Believer’s hear His voice and respond.

Consider the enemy, He is evil and wicked, bent on our destruction. “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” (John 10:10). He sets traps and snares seeking to capture Read More »

Child of Promise

Isaac_a_Lover_of_Peace.jpgWhat do we know of Isaac? He was the promised son of Abraham and Sarah in their old age. He was to be sacrificed by Abraham, but God intervened and provided a ram. He married Rebecca whom God selected and was the father of paternal twins Esau and Jacob. He was tricked into granting the first-born blessing to Jacob instead of Esau. In each of these significant events Issac was a participant rather than the initiator.

Isaac was a well digger, like his father, who had dug wells all around the area of Abimelech king of the Philistines in Gerar. “The Lord appeared to Isaac Read More »

God’s Initiative

1136_whiteAll through the Bible we see Interactions with men initiated by God. God called Noah and Abraham, He blessed Issac abundantly, He gave promises to Jacob. God revealed Himself and conversed directly with Moses. God chose David as King and all the Prophets, giving them specific direction for the welfare of the people of Israel. Yeshua sought out those with responsive hearts, the disciples, the Samaritan woman, Zacchaeus, Martha, Mary, and Lazarus, the two disciples on the road to Emmaus and many more.

We are His people, He cares for us with an everlasting Read More »

A Glimpse of Heaven

637e1d6d3dadce00d43a093e7767ce97--sun-shine-sun-raysYesterday, The Lord gave me a glimpse of heaven. A glimpse is enough to see and recognize but not to behold in fullness, it is only partial. I was driving down the highway and remembered someone’s offense toward me; I didn’t want this thought, so I prayed, Lord please forgive this person and remove this offense completely. I confessed my offenses against others and asked for His forgiveness. I asked Him how would it be to be totally free of these wrongs done to me, and that I have done to others. Then in an epiphany I saw the light of this world as though it was a shadow, and it parted revealing the bright light of Heaven. I knew this was Heaven because my prayer was answered; I felt totally free, light as a feather and had absolute freedom from any consciousness Read More »

Ensure the Lampstand Remains

menorahchurches“Unto the angel of the church of Ephesus write; These things saith he that holdeth the seven stars in his right hand, who walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks. I know thy works, and thy labour, and thy patience, and how thou canst not bear them which are evil: and thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars: And hast borne, and hast patience, and for my name’s sake hast laboured, and hast not fainted. Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love. Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his Read More »

Ascribe to the Lord

ad973d3689d4ef87288ca7b672333c75This morning I was a little tired and distraught by a night of frustrating dreams. As I started the day, my mind turned to my duty and my desire, which seemed alike – how can I love others today. With uncertainty about how this was to be achieved came more questions regarding my capability and resolve. I had no answers. Then some insight came, “I will leave it all with the Lord.” Be still and see the salvation of the Lord. I will surrender my reasonings, uncertainty, doubt and good intentions.

Turning to Him, I read:

“Sing to him, sing praise to him; tell of all his wonderful acts. Glory in his holy name; let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice. Look Read More »

Deception and Enlightenment

UnknownWhere did we get this idea that God does not, nor will not, work within and upon His creation of which we are a part? Our physical senses are our primary connection to the world around us, but they are limited to the physical while God is Spirit. The interaction of God in this world is not limited to the physical. Does God make the sun rise and the earth spin on its axis? Does God cause seeds to germinate and plants to grow; animals to live and reproduce? Some will say that these processes happen independently of God. This brings us back to the original question, is the creation self-sustaining? We know Read More »

The Power of Chance

ab1e99750fd30cab5e29c4201ca9a8b5--creation-vs-evolution-darwin-evolutionEveryone seems to agree that in chance there is hidden great power. The theory of evolution is based on chance events that happen randomly over millions of years. This theory is now generally accepted as fact and forms a basis for the origin of species. I was watching a nature show recently that cited certain animal species that evolved to live on land, but rejected it and returned to the sea. Perhaps this explains the large brain and mental capacity of dolphins that breathe air and are mammals like humans. Could they be the missing link? Might humans be the predecessors of dolphins? Did early men slithered upon shore, become upright, become apes, then a portion of them dove back into the sea and evolved into dolphins? Maybe the laughing sound they make is their laughing at us for remaining Read More »

Empty of Power

BylinerCOVER_FINALI’ve read some books and watched some movies lately that got me thinking about worldly perspectives. The book “Three Cups of Deceit”, by Jon Krakauer, is an interesting book about the founder of Central Asia Institute which was organized to build schools in Pakistan and Afghanistan. The founder fabricated lies and fake events to concoct a book that would appeal to the good intentions of a guilt ridden public. The founder may have possessed good intentions as well, but the substance and reality was that he secretly robbed and defrauded the public becoming personally famous and wealthy, instead of building and operating schools in Asia. He was slapped on the hand by the liberal government and exonerated in the liberal courts, because we live in a society that exalts good intentions Read More »

Times in This Age

imagesWhat is God about during our time? He is bringing salvation to many, perhaps multitudes. Today is the day of salvation, and it began, perhaps with the coming of spiritual Elijah, John the Baptist, the forerunner of Messiah Yeshua. His father Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit and prophesied,

“Praise be to the Lord, the God of Israel, because he has come to his people and redeemed them. He has raised up a horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David (as he said through his holy prophets of long ago), salvation from our enemies and from the hand of all who hate us—to show mercy to our ancestors and to remember Read More »

The Valley of the Shadow of Death

george-inness-the-valley-of-the-shadow-of-death“Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.” Psalm 23:4.

As I grow older, approaching my 60’s, my thoughts turn more and more to my mortality. It is comforting to note that, if one is a Believer, God has promised to never leave or forsake us (Hebrews 13:5).  In Psalm 23 this extends even to when we die as the Lord leads us through the “shadow of death” while comforting us with his rod and staff. The rod and staff were used by a shepherd as Read More »

A Modern World’s Snare

article-2142640-04FD7975000005DC-762_634x405Has this modern world in which we live failed us? Have we missed out on the processes that enable growth in virtue and wisdom? Have the baits of this modern society left us unsatisfied and longing for the substantial, the experience through which depth of meaning are found? The modern world is not just American, but largely world-wide, due to advances in communication delivery, transportation, and technology in general. These are not bad in themselves, but the snares that trap and enslave us are. We can not go back, and I’m not suggesting an Amish approach Read More »

The Opposite Spirit

531-2This is a term I first heard from a friend of mine to describe the ways of God’s Spirit. The Holy Spirit is contrary to our natural inclinations. Yeshua taught us to love our enemies; to give out of our poverty; to turn the other cheek when struck; to forgive those who despitefully treat us; summed up – to lose our life in order to save it. This teaching goes against every natural reasoning and inclination we have, thus it seems “the Opposite way”.

God says to his people, they seek me daily, seem eager to know my ways, ask me for just decisions, and take delight in approaching me. “Why have we fasted, they say, and you have not seen it? Why have Read More »