Posts Tagged ‘Jews’


Exodus 30:1,6,12,16,20,21,25,36 “Make an altar of acacia wood for burning incense… Put the altar in front of the curtain that is before the ark of the Testimony—before the atonement cover that is over the Testimony—where I will meet with you… “When you take a census of the Israelites to count them, each one must pay the LORD a ransom for his life at the time he is counted. Then no plague will come on them when you number them… Receive the atonement money from the Israelites and use it for the service of the Tent of Meeting. It will be a memorial for the Israelites before the LORD, making atonement for your lives”… Whenever they enter the Tent of Meeting, they shall wash with water so that they will not die. Also, when they approach the altar to minister by presenting an offering made to the LORD by fire, they shall wash their hands and feet so that they will not die. This is to be a lasting ordinance for Aaron and his descendants for the generations to come”… Make these into a sacred anointing oil, a fragrant blend, the work of a perfumer. It will be the sacred anointing oil… Grind some of it to powder and place it in front of the Testimony in the Tent of Meeting, where I will meet with you. It shall be most holy to you.

If not for awe, I am unsure what other emotion I can express for God who has not left a single stone unturned in terms of His plan for a place to dwell among His people.

Not only has God shown an ability to plan to perfection but His provision of skills, material and willingness to the Israelites show He is a master orchestrator and is beyond brilliant!!!

The question again this morning is to understand how all this relates to us who live nearly 3,500 years after this incident? (more…)


Exodus 29:1a,9b,15-16,35,38-39,44-46 “This is what you are to do to consecrate them, so they may serve me as priests… Then tie sashes on Aaron and his sons. The priesthood is theirs by a lasting ordinance. In this way you shall ordain Aaron and his sons… “Take one of the rams, and Aaron and his sons shall lay their hands on its head. Slaughter it and take the blood and sprinkle it against the altar on all sides… Slaughter it, take some of its blood and put it on the lobes of the right ears of Aaron and his sons, on the thumbs of their right hands, and on the big toes of their right feet. Then sprinkle blood against the altar on all sides… “Do for Aaron and his sons everything I have commanded you, taking seven days to ordain them… “This is what you are to offer on the altar regularly each day: two lambs a year old. Offer one in the morning and the other at twilight… “So I will consecrate the Tent of Meeting and the altar and will consecrate Aaron and his sons to serve me as priests. Then I will dwell among the Israelites and be their God. They will know that I am the LORD their God, who brought them out of Egypt so that I might dwell among them. I am the LORD their God.

As I read today’s chapter, I was left squirming about all the blood and gore stipulated by God as an offering to Him and kept wondering why, why? Animal rights have obviously had a lasting impact on me and therefore I see all this sacrifice in a different light from the people of Moses’ age.

Having said that however, I do know that God does not simply ask for these sacrifices without perfect reason and therefore I hope you join me in asking God to speak through this chapter into our lives today. (more…)


Hebrews 3:4-6, 16-19
For every house is built by someone, but God is the builder of everything. Moses was faithful as a servant in all God’s house, testifying to what would be said in the future. But Christ is faithful as a son over God’s house. And we are his house, if we hold on to our courage and the hope of which we boast… Who were they who heard and rebelled? Were they not all those Moses led out of Egypt? And with whom was he angry for forty years? Was it not with those who sinned, whose bodies fell in the desert? And to whom did God swear that they would never enter his rest if not to those who disobeyed? So we see that they were not able to enter, because of their unbelief.

Moses is considered the father of all prophets by the Jews because of the role he played in freeing the 2.5 million enslaved Israelites from the clutches of the Egyptian pharaoh and leading them to the promised land, Israel. This has brought him the love and respect of Israelites till this day and the blessing ‘may you live to be 120′ is what the Jews use till today to bless each other, a reflection of Moses’ age and accomplishments. The second aspect is the followers of Moses who were ungrateful and hard hearted. They complained from the moment they left Egypt, rebelled continually as they journeyed with Moses, were punished by God to death and still some fell away. What do these stories have for us today and what is God saying to us? (more…)


1 Thessalonians 2:13-15a
And we also thank God continually because, when you received the word of God, which you heard from us, you accepted it not as the word of men, but as it actually is, the word of God, which is at work in you who believe. For you, brothers, became imitators of God’s churches in Judea, which are in Christ Jesus: You suffered from your own countrymen the same things those churches suffered from the Jews, who killed the Lord Jesus and the prophets and also drove us out.

What is the sound of God’s voice like? This is a question I have often been asked and wondered a lot about. Is it loud or soft, gentle or forceful, is it audible or so gentle that one wouldn’t hear unless listening intently. We try ever so hard to hear God’s voice and I’ve know many including myself who have been dejected about not hearing God’s voice audibly whereas I have met several people who hear His voice often and very clearly. What is God teaching us from today’s passage and does it help us understand how to hear His voice?

Paul commends the Thessalonians for receiving the word of God in faith and showing evidence of their conviction by their lives. The word of God is real, is true and is even printed for those of us who need to see it. The Thessalonians and the Christians of those times past had only scrolls to refer to which were not indexed or bound together like we have it today. Their faith was much greater than ours because they believed God’s word for what it was. We need visual proof in sound, theatrics and more to believe and keep the faith but they had none. God’s voice is recorded in word and we are reminded that this world will pass away but not God’s word which will be real and true for eternity. Are you able to hear God through His written word or are you sad that God missed your sensory needs? Let’s live by faith and not by sight.

In His Loving Service,
ServantBoy

Luke 21:33 Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.

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1 Corinthians 12:4-7, 12-13, 27
Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit. And there are varieties of ministries, and the same Lord. There are varieties of effects, but the same God who works all things in all persons. But to each one is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good… For even as the body is one and yet has many members, and all the members of the body, though they are many, are one body, so also is Christ. For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body, whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free, and we were all made to drink of one Spirit… Now you are Christ’s body, and individually members of it.

Paul writes much about gifts of the Holy Spirit in this chapter and I recommend you read it well to understand it. The Bible tells us that we are filled with the Holy Spirit when we accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior. The Holy Spirit is at work in us transforming us from inside out to make us like Jesus and empowers us to serve God in many ways. Different believers have different gifts that collectively serve God and Paul weeds out the confusion regarding this gifting because in our paradigm, we think each one should have the same gifts and don’t appreciate the variety that adds up to glorifying God collectively.

Yesterday we reflected on communion which is a symbol of the body and blood of Jesus. In 1 Cor. 10:17, Paul reminds us that ‘Since there is one bread, we who are many are one body; for we all partake of the one bread‘. We are all different in our cultures, colors, languages, etc. but we all are bound in love by Jesus that makes us family. Similarly in our gifting, we are all differently gifted but collectively serve God to glorify Him alone. No one of us is greater or lesser because of our gifting and also Jesus reminds us in Luke 9:48 that whoever is the least among us is the greatest. Let us seek our spiritual gifts from God to use it for His glory and lets work together to build His kingdom.

In His Loving Service,
ServantBoy


1 Corinthians 10:12-13, 21-22, 31-33
So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall! No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it… You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons too; you cannot have a part in both the Lord’s table and the table of demons. Are we trying to arouse the Lord’s jealousy? Are we stronger than he?… So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God. Do not cause anyone to stumble, whether Jews, Greeks or the church of God— even as I try to please everybody in every way. For I am not seeking my own good but the good of many, so that they may be saved.

Today’s chapter is power-packed in that it is so pregnant with meaning that I wish I could use it to write out several devotionals but instead I chose parts that make a sense of the whole. Paul seems to be using the word caution all through this chapter and I hope you can also get a sense of it by reading the chapter. First he warns that we should not become idolaters, then about not sharing God with the God’s of this world and finally to be aware of our actions keeping our final goal in mind.

As I continue to walk with the Lord, one of my many battles I face is that I think I know and therefore I do. In our human minds, we like to take control of things and in the same manner, we like to believe we know something because of the length of time we have been associated or exposed to it. However, Paul warns us not to take the Lord for granted.
Temptation is real and while we are given only as much as we can take, we can fall into it if we don’t run away from its lure. Let’s constantly reflect our spiritual walk in the mirror of the cross and let’s not forget that it cost our Lord His own blood to buy us our eternal freedom!

In His Loving Service,
ServantBoy


Romans 10:1-4
Brothers, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for the Israelites is that they may be saved. For I can testify about them that they are zealous for God, but their zeal is not based on knowledge. Since they did not know the righteousness that comes from God and sought to establish their own, they did not submit to God’s righteousness. Christ is the end of the law so that there may be righteousness for everyone who believes.

The Jews are marked by religiosity and religious fervour that few others share and it is something that amazes me. Paul testifies of it in the passage above when he refers to them as zealous. However, he states that their zeal for God is not based on knowledge and this is where they are lost. I am certain that to the Jews, we Christians are lost in following Jesus as our Lord and Saviour and this causes the great divide. So, is Christ the undoing of the law as stated above?

For thousands of years, the Jews have been trying to live up to the law and follow its requirements but have faltered and therefore offer sacrifices as atonement for their sins. This is being done in wait of the Messiah who will redeem them and establish them as His own. In Christ, all the requirements of the law were met, in his death the ultimate sacrifice for mankind was made and in his resurrection, the assurance of life eternal for those who believe is confirmed. He is the Messiah for the Jews and Gentiles alike and waits (patiently) for those who believe to come and submit their lives to him and accept his gift of forgiveness and salvation. He is the fulfillment of the law and in Him, there is righteousness for all who believe. Are you still trying to live up to the law or can you see the truth in Jesus?

In His Loving Service,
ServantBoy