Posts Tagged ‘Majesty’


Deuteronomy 7 (NLT) “When the LORD your God brings you into the land you are about to enter and occupy, he will clear away many nations ahead of you: the Hittites, Girgashites, Amorites, Canaanites, Perizzites, Hivites, and Jebusites. These seven nations are greater and more numerous than you. When the LORD your God hands these nations over to you and you conquer them, you must completely destroy them. Make no treaties with them and show them no mercy. You must not intermarry with them… For you are a holy people, who belong to the LORD your God. Of all the people on earth, the LORD your God has chosen you to be his own special treasure. “The LORD did not set his heart on you and choose you because you were more numerous than other nations, for you were the smallest of all nations! Rather, it was simply that the LORD loves you, and he was keeping the oath he had sworn to your ancestors… He is the faithful God who keeps his covenant for a thousand generations and lavishes his unfailing love on those who love him and obey his commands. But he does not hesitate to punish and destroy those who reject him. Therefore, you must obey all these commands, decrees, and regulations I am giving you today… Perhaps you will think to yourselves, ‘How can we ever conquer these nations that are so much more powerful than we are?’ But don’t be afraid of them! Just remember what the LORD your God did to Pharaoh and to all the land of Egypt. Remember the great terrors the LORD your God sent against them… “No, do not be afraid of those nations, for the LORD your God is among you, and he is a great and awesome God. The LORD your God will drive those nations out ahead of you little by little. You will not clear them away all at once, otherwise the wild animals would multiply too quickly for you. But the LORD your God will hand them over to you. He will throw them into complete confusion until they are destroyed. He will put their kings in your power, and you will erase their names from the face of the earth. No one will be able to stand against you, and you will destroy them all.

Death and destruction seem to be a big part of God’s instructions to His chosen people. How is that evidence of a loving God and how different are we from any other religion that terrorizes non-believers? (more…)


Numbers 29 (NLT) “On the first day of the seventh month hold a sacred assembly and do no regular work. It is a day for you to sound the trumpets… On the tenth day of this seventh month hold a sacred assembly… On the fifteenth day of the seventh month, hold a sacred assembly and do no regular work. Celebrate a festival to the LORD for seven days… On the second day offer twelve young bulls, two rams and fourteen male lambs a year old, all without defect… On the third day offer eleven bulls, two rams and fourteen male lambs a year old, all without defect… On the fourth day offer ten bulls, two rams and fourteen male lambs a year old, all without defect… On the fifth day offer nine bulls, two rams and fourteen male lambs a year old, all without defect… On the sixth day offer eight bulls, two rams and fourteen male lambs a year old, all without defect… On the seventh day offer seven bulls, two rams and fourteen male lambs a year old, all without defect… On the eighth day hold a closing special assembly and do no regular work. Present as an aroma pleasing to the LORD a food offering consisting of a burnt offering of one bull, one ram and seven male lambs a year old, all without defect.”

What is most staggering to me is the number of animals that were sacrificed and the rituals that were expected of the Israelites. How is God able to speak to us through all this bloodshed? (more…)


Numbers 21:1-3,6,7,9,23,24,34 The Canaanite king of Arad, who lived in the Negev, heard that the Israelites were approaching on the road through Atharim. So he attacked the Israelites and took some of them as prisoners. Then the people of Israel made this vow to the Lord: “If you will hand these people over to us, we will completely destroy all their towns.” The Lord heard the Israelites’ request and gave them victory over the Canaanites. The Israelites completely destroyed them and their towns, and the place has been called Hormah ever since… So the Lord sent poisonous snakes among the people, and many were bitten and died. Then the people came to Moses and cried out, “We have sinned by speaking against the Lord and against you. Pray that the Lord will take away the snakes.” So Moses prayed for the people… So Moses made a snake out of bronze and attached it to a pole. Then anyone who was bitten by a snake could look at the bronze snake and be healed!… But King Sihon refused to let them cross his territory. Instead, he mobilized his entire army and attacked Israel in the wilderness, engaging them in battle at Jahaz. But the Israelites slaughtered them with their swords and occupied their land from the Arnon River to the Jabbok River. They went only as far as the Ammonite border because the boundary of the Ammonites was fortified… The Lord said to Moses, “Do not be afraid of him, for I have handed him over to you, along with all his people and his land. Do the same to him as you did to King Sihon of the Amorites, who ruled in Heshbon.”

From being a peaceable people, we now see the Israelites in a new light as warriors who are able to destroy strongholds. What is God speaking to us through this chapter? (more…)


Numbers 11:1,5-6,11,16,21-23,33 Soon the people began to complain about their hardship, and the Lord heard everything they said. Then the Lord’s anger blazed against them, and he sent a fire to rage among them, and he destroyed some of the people in the outskirts of the camp… “We remember the fish we used to eat for free in Egypt. And we had all the cucumbers, melons, leeks, onions, and garlic we wanted. But now our appetites are gone. All we ever see is this manna!”… And Moses said to the Lord, “Why are you treating me, your servant, so harshly? Have mercy on me! What did I do to deserve the burden of all these people?… Then the Lord said to Moses, “Gather before me seventy men who are recognized as elders and leaders of Israel. Bring them to the Tabernacle to stand there with you… But Moses responded to the Lord, “There are 600,000 foot soldiers here with me, and yet you say, ‘I will give them meat for a whole month!’ Even if we butchered all our flocks and herds, would that satisfy them? Even if we caught all the fish in the sea, would that be enough?” Then the Lord said to Moses, “Has my arm lost its power? Now you will see whether or not my word comes true!”… But while they were gorging themselves on the meat—while it was still in their mouths—the anger of the Lord blazed against the people, and he struck them with a severe plague.

Reading this chapter left me with mixed emotions because in one context, the response of the Israelites seem terrible and in another context, God’s reaction to their complaining seems far worse.

How are we to understand this chapter and apply it into our lives today? (more…)


Numbers 8:1-2,5-6,14,16,22 The Lord said to Moses, “Give Aaron the following instructions: When you set up the seven lamps in the lampstand, place them so their light shines forward in front of the lampstand”… Then the Lord said to Moses, “Now set the Levites apart from the rest of the people of Israel and make them ceremonially clean… In this way, you will set the Levites apart from the rest of the people of Israel, and the Levites will belong to me… “Of all the people of Israel, the Levites are reserved for me. I have claimed them for myself in place of all the firstborn sons of the Israelites; I have taken the Levites as their substitutes… After that the Levites went into the Tabernacle to perform their duties, assisting Aaron and his sons. So they carried out all the commands that the Lord gave Moses concerning the Levites.

It seems God was partial towards the Levites in that He chose them from among the many and gave them the princely task of interceding between Israel and God.

What is God speaking to us through this passage and is God’s service only for a few from the many? (more…)


Leviticus 9:1-4,22-24 ON THE eighth day Moses called Aaron and his sons and the elders of Israel; And he said to Aaron, Take a young calf for a sin offering and a ram for a burnt offering, [each] without blemish, and offer them before the Lord. And say to the Israelites, Take a male goat for a sin offering, and a calf and a lamb, both a year old, without blemish, for a burnt offering, Also a bull and a ram for peace offerings to sacrifice before the Lord, and a cereal offering mixed with oil, for today the Lord will appear to you… Then Aaron lifted his hands toward the people and blessed them, and came down [from the altar] after offering the sin offering, the burnt offering, and the peace offerings. Moses and Aaron went into the Tent of Meeting, and when they came out they blessed the people, and the glory of the Lord [the Shekinah cloud] appeared to all the people [as promised]. Then there came a fire out from before the Lord and consumed the burnt offering and the fat on the altar; and when all the people saw it, they shouted and fell on their faces.

This was the record of Aaron’s first day in office and what an amazing day it was! God came in power to show His hand upon Aaron and his fellow Israelites.

We learn so much from God’s words everyday and what might be our lesson today? (more…)


2 Peter 1:16, 19-21
We did not follow cleverly invented stories when we told you about the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty… And we have the word of the prophets made more certain, and you will do well to pay attention to it, as to a light shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts. Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet’s own interpretation. For prophecy never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.

One of the joys of knowing God is that He has given us His word to know Him, to hear from Him, to learn about Him, and therefore to be directed by Him alone. As Christians in today’s fast paced life, we tend to like everything spoon fed to us and so instead of making the effort to seek God through His word, we seek Him through people we consider inspired by Him and who therefore are able to minister to us most effectively because what they preach is God’s word and what we are therefore directed to do is God’s will. Is that not what God is directing us to understand from the passage above? (more…)


Hebrews 1:3-5, 13-14
The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven. So he became as much superior to the angels as the name he has inherited is superior to theirs. For to which of the angels did God ever say, “You are my Son; today I have become your Father”? Or again, “I will be his Father, and he will be my Son”?… To which of the angels did God ever say, “Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet”? Are not all angels ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation?

Angels, in my head, have always been the sweetest of creatures who have a soft heart, a gentle demeanor, look pretty/handsome, have fluffy white wings and are always watching out for us. This is what I assimilated probably from all the greeting cards, movies and books that refer to them and in a way they are a representation of God to us. Jesus Christ was born of humble means, grew up in hard times, was challenged by every religious leader and was crucified for us, not as pretty a sight or life as that of angels. To some, angels are more than just nice beings and are considered worthy of worship and today God explains to us who is worthy of our worship and why. (more…)


Acts 19:23-27
About that time there arose a great disturbance about the Way. A silversmith named Demetrius, who made silver shrines of Artemis, brought in no little business for the craftsmen. He called them together, along with the workmen in related trades, and said: “Men, you know we receive a good income from this business. And you see and hear how this fellow Paul has convinced and led astray large numbers of people here in Ephesus and in practically the whole province of Asia. He says that man-made gods are no gods at all. There is danger not only that our trade will lose its good name, but also that the temple of the great goddess Artemis will be discredited, and the goddess herself, who is worshiped throughout the province of Asia and the world, will be robbed of her divine majesty.”

As we continue to journey with Paul through his travels around Turkey, Greece, Italy and the surrounding regions to preach the gospel, we see how the Holy Spirit has been working in and through Paul, the new believers and the brothers who work with Paul to extend God’s dominion in those lands. The signs were obvious and the truth was revealed to everyone so that many submitted themselves before Jesus and accepted Him as their personal Lord and Savior. This certainly had an impact on trades that were reliant on the religions of the land as people now had no need of idols, sacrifices, etc. Demetrius represented the silversmiths but the big gathering was anyone who was part of this community serving the worshippers of the Gods of that land. What a devastating effect it must have had on their trade?

Even today, many of us go through life with such a myopic view of God. We define God in a certain way and are unwilling to change that perspective, even if it means it hinders our walk with Him. Denominations, rituals, idols and all the paraphernalia seems to occupy us more than loving and serving God. Lets not be Demetrius’ and be locked in our cages of rigid understanding. Lets open our minds and ask God to lead us to a better understanding of who He is, what he wants of us and follow His lead. We have the Bible which is God’s word to us and that should be our compass in our life. The Holy Spirit is given to us to direct us to God and is available to every believer.

In His Loving Service,
Vineet

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Matthew 4:1-11
Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the desert to be tempted by the devil. After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.” Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’” Then the devil took him to the holy city and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. “If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down. For it is written: “‘He will command his angels concerning you, and they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.’” Jesus answered him, “It is also written: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’”Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor. “All this I will give you,” he said, “if you will bow down and worship me.” Jesus said to him, “Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.’” Then the devil left him, and angels came and attended him.

There are 4 major themes in chapter 4 and choosing Jesus’ temptation seemed fitting because it is something I personally battle with; what about you? What first got me was the realization that the Holy Spirit led Jesus into the desert to be tempted. I constantly pray that God would protect me from the fowler’s snare and here God himself is being led into it. To add to the challenge, Jesus fasts forty days and nights which means he did not eat a morsel. Fasting one meal for me is a challenge because I’m a foodie and often that sacrifice of meal consumes me so much that I chicken out of fasting. Then Jesus was tempted with things no man could refuse. Satan throws food, comfort, power and majesty in Jesus’ feeble hands as these are things most of us would clutch on to when we are tempted but Jesus refuses every one of them and counters each one scripturally, finally to be rid of the devil.

In our context, what does this mean? We live lives filled with challenges. To some it’s basic necessities, to some money, to some power, to some relationships, to some respect and honor and so on. These challenges all revolve around us and we are constantly seeking ways to resolve them. The poor want to be rich, the weak want to become strong, the sick want good health, the old want youth and the young want age! When we realize that it is not I that matters and we cross the I, we are led to the cross. In Christ, there is surety of being recognized as precious because he died for us which none can match, there is eternity which is unthinkable, there is peace which is unaffordable and there is joy that comes from his love in our lives. Which path would you choose?

In His Loving Service,
Vineet