Posts Tagged ‘Heavens’


Exodus 31:1-6,12-13,16-17 Then the LORD said to Moses, “See, I have chosen Bezalel son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah, and I have filled him with the Spirit of God, with skill, ability and knowledge in all kinds of crafts— to make artistic designs for work in gold, silver and bronze, to cut and set stones, to work in wood, and to engage in all kinds of craftsmanship. Moreover, I have appointed Oholiab son of Ahisamach, of the tribe of Dan, to help him. Also I have given skill to all the craftsmen to make everything I have commanded you… Then the LORD said to Moses, “Say to the Israelites, ‘You must observe my Sabbaths. This will be a sign between me and you for the generations to come, so you may know that I am the LORD, who makes you holy… The Israelites are to observe the Sabbath, celebrating it for the generations to come as a lasting covenant. It will be a sign between me and the Israelites forever, for in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, and on the seventh day he abstained from work and rested.’”

How beautiful is it when God reveals His desires for us? After God described the beautiful dwelling place He will live in to be with His people, He reveals that the materials are provided to the Israelites, as are the skills and the calling.

God certainly has shown total and perfect control in all He does and He has a beautiful way of using His people to achieve His objective. What then happens to great men like Moses and what is this about the Sabbath?

One great challenge we face as humans is our pride. Pride has served as a great stumbling block to many in their walk and continues to be among the greatest battles we face daily.

We today deal with challenges such as lack of self-confidence, low morale, poor esteem, low self-worth, etc. as issues that affect our personality and we try to work hard against it.

Children are taught from a young age to take charge, be leaders, be individual and confident in their presentations, we reaffirm them, motivate and inspire them, etc. to help them work away from the issues of low self-esteem.

With God, things seem to be very different. First God chooses a man who stammered, who had no face among the Egyptians or Israelites because he murdered and ran away, who was just a shepherd tending flocks and lived under the grace of his father in law Jethro.

Moses was that man and God used him to accomplish the great task of shaming the great Egyptians and freeing the Israelites from 430 years of bondage and slavery, all without an army or wealth or physical strength.

As Moses leads this great nation of over two million people across the sands of the desert to the promised land, God then establishes other men from among the nation to take up other responsibilities.

Clearly God is not in the process of making one man superstars but rather works on using each of His chosen ones to do His work when they are willing and ready.

When we are transformed by God’s love, we are each called to serve God and some may be called to be the face while others may be called behind the scenes but no single person’s role makes them any less important to God.

Further, God makes it clear to the Israelites that they were to keep the Sabbath without fail and the consequence of not keeping it was death! Seems a bit stiff as an expectation, you might wonder.

When we contrast those words of God to the words and actions of Christ in the 4 gospels, you are left shocked as were the Jews of Jesus’ day because we see that our understanding of God’s words are not complete and Jesus reveals the meaning and purpose of God’s word.

Read these passages from the gospels and think about Jesus’ response: Matthew 12:1-16; Mark 3:2; Luke 6:1-5; Luke 13:10-17; John 6:2-18; John 7:23.

On the sabbath day, Jesus healed people and ate grain from the fields and this stirred up the keepers of the law who lived by this commandment in Exodus 31:16-17 and Deuteronomy 5:14.

Jesus responded to them asking them how they felt about David’s actions when he and his companions were hungry and went into the temple and ate the consecrated bread. It was unlawful for them but not for the priests.

Furthermore, priests work on the sabbath day and that is certainly unlawful as per the law, yet they are considered innocent. The problem here was not the action but that God desired mercy, not sacrifice.

Sabbath was the day of rest from regular work but it is a day to celebrate God’s goodness to us. We are called to spend the day worshipping God. No law must be understood so as to contradict itself. Jesus Christ is the Lord of the sabbath and the day is to be dedicated to Him for His glory.

In His Loving Service,
ServantBoy


Genesis 15:1-7 After these things the word of the LORD came to Abram in a vision, saying, “Do not fear, Abram, I am a shield to you; Your reward shall be very great.” Abram said, “O Lord GOD, what will You give me, since I am childless, and the heir of my house is Eliezer of Damascus?” And Abram said, “Since You have given no offspring to me, one born in my house is my heir.” Then behold, the word of the LORD came to him, saying, “This man will not be your heir; but one who will come forth from your own body, he shall be your heir.” And He took him outside and said, “Now look toward the heavens, and count the stars, if you are able to count them.” And He said to him, “So shall your descendants be.” Then he believed in the LORD; and He reckoned it to him as righteousness. And He said to him, “I am the LORD who brought you out of Ur of the Chaldeans, to give you this land to possess it.”

After Abrahm’s resounding victory, eating the bread and wine from the priest Mechizedek, offering a tithe and refusing the gifts of Sodom, God spoke to him in a vision instructing him not to be afraid because God would be his shield and also adding that Abram’s reward would be great.

Obviously Abram was afraid because he was worried about retribution from the kings he defeated and he knew he had no children of his own to protect him and his household and continue the lineage in this new land God had promised him.

Also, Abram’s support in battle was his neighbors and friends and they might not always stand with him as they were not of him and therefore outside of God’s protection, Abram could see no hope. That is the reason he responds to God saying that he is forced to make his servant his heir.

It is obvious God blessed Abram because we know it from history but the question that played on my mind was why did God delay in providing Abram a son? This vision was about a quarter century before Sarai bore Abram a son when he was 100 years old! (more…)


2 Peter 3:8-13

But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. But the day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything in it will be laid bare. Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and godly lives as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming. That day will bring about the destruction of the heavens by fire, and the elements will melt in the heat. But in keeping with his promise we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth, the home of righteousness.

As I continue to listen to the news from around the world, it seems more and more apparent that the only possible change in our world  for sanity and peaceable living is a total reconstruction of humanity but that would not work because we will remain sinful and continue to be selfish by nature, therefore bringing us back to where we are. Some of us might live in very surroundings and are possibly sheltered from the harsh realities of the 21st century but a brief glance at world news will show us how broken our world is. Also, the peaceful lives that we lead are often peaceful because we are made to think that everything is well but a simple dipstick check of how people are doing around us will show that everyone is strained by the burden of suffering. People with more worry because they have more to lose, those with less worry about how they will survive and those in-between are never at peace about where they are. In all this confusion called life, where is God and what is the answer He offers us? (more…)


Ephesians 4:10-13
He who descended is the very one who ascended higher than all the heavens, in order to fill the whole universe. It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, to prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.

In times past, I believed that truly serving God meant getting into full-time ministry and leaving the secular world behind, studying theology and quitting the world of commerce and so on. One day I was talking with the pastor in the church I attended back in Dubai and he said that his role limited his reach to share the gospel with people in the marketplace whereas mine gave me access to the unreached far more than he could ever manage. This was quite astounding to me because it was then that I realized that serving God was not an actor’s job played out in optimal conditions in a set. God calls us to serve Him where He has placed us and to people around us with whom we are able to build relationships and share our testimonies. What is the ultimate goal for us then?

Jesus is the one who descended into the grave for no fault of His but for our brokenness because we nailed Him on the cross by our sins and He took the weight of the world’s sin, died on the cross and was resurrected by God the Father to the heavens. In so doing He released the Holy Spirit who works in the hearts and minds of all who believe, and directs us to serve Him through our gifting whether as apostles, pastors, prophets or any other role. The goal clearly is to build up the body of Christ to be unified in our faith in Jesus Christ as the Son of God, to grow in His love and understanding and to become more like Him. What is your gifting and are you using it for God’s purposes? I encourage you to consider the purpose of you life and to take the next step in faith in Christ.

In His Loving Service,
ServantBoy

Ephesians 4:16 From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.


Ephesians 1:3-6
Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will— to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves.

I am imagining myself sitting in a prison and the last thing on my mind would be to write out letters of encouragement to others because I would be trying to find a way out. Paul did just the opposite and this book is a letter written to the church in Ephesus from the dark annals of a prison. He certainly was a different man whose only motivation was to serve the Lord with his all and we praise God for filling in Paul that desire and drive which we desperately need. He starts this letter with a HOT topic, the predestination of the children of God. The reason I call this topic hot is because it is a revolting thought to some that God would chose whom He wants to have in His family and whom He does not want and in so doing is not giving us the freedom to chose. That’s a hard one to crack!

Paul starts off by praising God the Father for choosing us in His Son Jesus Christ before the world began for the purpose of being holy and blameless in His sight. God did this for His own pleasure and not because of our goodness or to justify us. We are given the honor of being called His own sons through faith in His Son Jesus Christ and we owe our lives as gratitude for God’s unmerited favor (grace). We can never know whom God has chosen and why, for it is His own will but we do know that He has called us to direct the world to Him by glorifying His Son Jesus Christ with our lives. Rather than argue about the justice in God’s decisions, we should be expending our every ounce of energy praising Him and His Son Jesus Christ like Paul did. Shaking our fists in God’s face is as futile as throwing a stone at the adulteress because we are sinful in our own selves that we cannot see right in the first place. Submission and praise is what will keep us focussed on God.

In His Loving Service,
ServantBoy

Matthew 25:34 “Then the King will say to those on His right, ‘Come, you who are blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world