Posts Tagged ‘Transformation’


Exodus 25:1-2,8-10,16,21-22,29-30 The LORD said to Moses, “Tell the Israelites to bring me an offering. You are to receive the offering for me from each man whose heart prompts him to give… “Then have them make a sanctuary for me, and I will dwell among them. Make this tabernacle and all its furnishings exactly like the pattern I will show you. “Have them make a chest of acacia wood—two and a half cubits long, a cubit and a half wide, and a cubit and a half high… Then put in the ark the Testimony, which I will give you… Place the cover on top of the ark and put in the ark the Testimony, which I will give you… There, above the cover between the two cherubim that are over the ark of the Testimony, I will meet with you and give you all my commands for the Israelites… And make its plates and dishes of pure gold, as well as its pitchers and bowls for the pouring out of offerings. Put the bread of the Presence on this table to be before me at all times… A talent of pure gold is to be used for the lampstand and all these accessories. See that you make them according to the pattern shown you on the mountain.

Again we come upon a chapter that we could spend days dissecting and admiring God with for the detail He gives Moses, each aspect of which has great significance. However, we started this journey a chapter a day and we will do our cursory study in this way and God-willing come back and do a detailed study at His appointed time.

From the perspective of an ark of God, this model was not unlike the Egyptian arks to their Gods that were carried on their shoulders. Why would God want the Israelites to have something similar and what was to the show aspect? (more…)


Exodus 20:1-3,18,22-26 And God spoke all these words: “I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. “You shall have no other gods before me… When the people saw the thunder and lightning and heard the trumpet and saw the mountain in smoke, they trembled with fear. They stayed at a distance… Then the LORD said to Moses, “Tell the Israelites this: ‘You have seen for yourselves that I have spoken to you from heaven: Do not make any gods to be alongside me; do not make for yourselves gods of silver or gods of gold. “‘Make an altar of earth for me and sacrifice on it your burnt offerings and fellowship offerings, your sheep and goats and your cattle. Wherever I cause my name to be honored, I will come to you and bless you. If you make an altar of stones for me, do not build it with dressed stones, for you will defile it if you use a tool on it. And do not go up to my altar on steps, lest your nakedness be exposed on it.’

Finally God establishes His laws to the Israelites that give them a clear understanding of what is and is not acceptable in His sight. Until now, they operated under the duress of the Egyptian Kings and did not appreciate their freedom enough.

God sure knows how to make a point as was evident in the fear of the Israelites who saw the physical threat to life when God spoke. Is that God’s message to us today? (more…)


Exodus 15:1-3,20-21,25-26 Then Moses and the Israelites sang this song to the LORD: “I will sing to the LORD, for he is highly exalted. The horse and its rider he has hurled into the sea. The LORD is my strength and my song; he has become my salvation. He is my God, and I will praise him, my father’s God, and I will exalt him. The LORD is a warrior; the LORD is his name… Then Miriam the prophetess, Aaron’s sister, took a tambourine in her hand, and all the women followed her, with tambourines and dancing. Miriam sang to them: “Sing to the LORD, for he is highly exalted. The horse and its rider he has hurled into the sea”… Then Moses cried out to the LORD, and the LORD showed him a piece of wood. He threw it into the water, and the water became sweet. There the LORD made a decree and a law for them, and there he tested them. He said, “If you listen carefully to the voice of the LORD your God and do what is right in his eyes, if you pay attention to his commands and keep all his decrees, I will not bring on you any of the diseases I brought on the Egyptians, for I am the LORD, who heals you.”

The song of a victorious people is joyful indeed but this song takes on much more significance because it celebrates the one who freed them from slavery and delivered them in such a dramatic and powerful way. Add to that Miriam’s song with the Israelite women and we can see a real joyful celebration indeed.

Two million plus people celebrating God surely was a sight but is it not amazing that in three days time, they were back to complaining!!! Is this a representation of us today or just evidence of 430 years of hardships echoed? (more…)


Exodus 4:1,10-11,13-14,24-26,31 Then Moses answered, “But behold, they will not believe me or listen to my voice, for they will say, ‘The LORD did not appear to you.’”… But Moses said to the LORD, “Oh, my Lord, I am not eloquent, either in the past or since you have spoken to your servant, but I am slow of speech and of tongue.”… But he said, “Oh, my Lord, please send someone else.” Then the anger of the LORD was kindled against Moses and he said, “Is there not Aaron, your brother, the Levite? I know that he can speak well. Behold, he is coming out to meet you, and when he sees you, he will be glad in his heart… At a lodging place on the way the LORD met him and sought to put him to death. Then Zipporah took a flint and cut off her son’s foreskin and touched Moses’ feet with it and said, “Surely you are a bridegroom of blood to me!” So he let him alone. It was then that she said, “A bridegroom of blood,” because of the circumcision… And the people believed; and when they heard that the LORD had visited the people of Israel and that he had seen their affliction, they bowed their heads and worshiped.

Moses doubts repeatedly and God quells each of his doubts with miraculous gifts that confound imagination and obviously work in establishing what Moses was sent for to the elders of Israel.

However, the threat to Moses’ life by God Himself is a strange incident and Zipporah’s response seems very crude. What was all that about and what is God’s word for us today? (more…)


John 4:19-24
“Sir,” the woman said, “I can see that you are a prophet. Our fathers worshiped on this mountain, but you Jews claim that the place where we must worship is in Jerusalem.” Jesus declared, “Believe me, woman, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews. Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth.”

This incident occurred in Samaria and Jesus was talking with a Samaritan woman with whom Jews do not normally converse or have anything to do with. Sounds strange but such stereotypes exist even today. For Jews, talking and having any form of relationship with a non-Jew was sacrilegious and Jesus was going beyond that and actually sharing the gospel! The hope of the Jews was now being offered to all of mankind and the path was simple and straight but would always be against the grain of this world. The part of this passage that stood out to me was when Jesus said that true believers would worship the Father in spirit and truth. What did he mean by that? What is untruthful about how we worship?

Before I accepted Christ as my personal Lord and Savior, going to Church was a requirement and I never missed a week without going and doing all that needed to be done. I was an active and participative Christian and never said I was anything but a Christian. However, my heart and mind was not in what I did because it was ritualistic. When the wool of rituals were removed from my eyes and I saw the Lord calling me into a real relationship and that was when rituals were replaced by a relationship where I now live to serve him. Christ now is alive in me through his spirit and I can worship him in spirit and truth with my entire being. Do you know what I am talking about? Have you drunk the living water? Is your life now filled with meaning and purpose? If no, ask the Lord to remove the wool on your eyes and show you who and what he is and he will. If yes, I hope you are enjoying worshipping God in Spirit and Truth with all your heart and mind?

In Your Loving Service,
Vineet

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Beauty in the Bush


John 3:25-30
An argument developed between some of John’s disciples and a certain Jew over the matter of ceremonial washing. They came to John and said to him, “Rabbi, that man who was with you on the other side of the Jordan—the one you testified about—well, he is baptizing, and everyone is going to him.” To this John replied, “A man can receive only what is given him from heaven. You yourselves can testify that I said, ‘I am not the Christ but am sent ahead of him.’ The bride belongs to the bridegroom. The friend who attends the bridegroom waits and listens for him, and is full of joy when he hears the bridegroom’s voice. That joy is mine, and it is now complete. He must become greater; I must become less.

John the baptist certainly was no ordinary man and it is interesting how he deals with loss of respect and position. John (A disciple of Jesus and the writer of this gospel) captures the essence of the situation well in this passage above. The arguing parties were John the baptist’s own disciples with a Jew and how good it must’ve felt for him to note that his disciples were supporting him. However, without a moment’s notice, John the baptist corrects his disciples and the Jew that he is only a close associate of the groom, Jesus Christ, who is the long awaited messiah and his joy is to prepare the way for the groom to meet his bride, Israel. The last statement he makes, however, is the toughest one for any follower of Christ to make until they understand the inverted perspective of God’s kingdom. Less of us and more of HIM.

In life we are constantly battling situations to improve and enhance ourselves, our means, our position, our wealth, our comforts, etc. However, when we submit our lives to Christ, we recognize our brokenness and are testifying to God’s abundant grace (Unmerited favor) for our sinfulness and we are made a new creation in him. This new creation is purposed to serve God and not self. We are called to give God the glory and not ourselves. When we serve God in our lives, he will provide for our every need and will be the one who gives and takes away. God is no genie in a bottle who works for our glory but it’s the reverse. I pray today that we would live by the same motto, More of Jesus and less of me!

In His Loving Service,
Vineet

PS: Sign up for daily devotionals by clicking the email subscription icon at the top right of this page or by visiting http://groups.google.com/group/in-his-loving-service. Also, share this with your friends and family who need some encouragement and direction in their lives.

Distant Horizon


John 2:6-10
Nearby stood six stone water jars, the kind used by the Jews for ceremonial washing, each holding from twenty to thirty gallons. Jesus said to the servants, “Fill the jars with water”; so they filled them to the brim. Then he told them, “Now draw some out and take it to the master of the banquet.” They did so, and the master of the banquet tasted the water that had been turned into wine. He did not realize where it had come from, though the servants who had drawn the water knew. Then he called the bridegroom aside and said, “Everyone brings out the choice wine first and then the cheaper wine after the guests have had too much to drink; but you have saved the best till now.”

This is a well-known and much-spoken about miracle and considering the number of amazing miracles Jesus performed, this can easily become just another one. However, we have to note that this is the first miracle Jesus performed that is recorded in the Bible. There may have been other for his mother to call him to do something so outstanding but Jesus was not the keenest because he felt it was not the time for him to start his ministry yet. What stood out for me is the thoughts of the bridegroom who was complemented about the wine. He knew for a fact that the wine was over and he also knew that this would be considered shameful for him and his family because it was custom to serve wine until the end of the meal. What would possibly be going through his mind when the master of the banquet called to speak to him about the wine? Elation, excitement, joy or shame, sadness and misery? After hearing the master of banquet out, what would have been his reaction?

The reason I ask these questions is to know how you and I would react/respond to God’s working in our lives? When we have a monumental situation in our lives, we are crying blood before God for his resolution and when God does respond, what is our reaction? Would we keep all the pledges we made before God if he delivered us? Would we still need God and go to him as passionately as we did when we had our issues? Would we testify of God’s goodness and grace to us even though we deserve none of it? Would we forget God’s mercies and blessings? Judging from my life, I am guilty of all of the above even though God has been faithful time and time again. I am not proud of my actions and I do hope to make amends from right now, after being reminded by God through his word. What about you? Has God been good to you and are you still in a passionate and sincere relationship with him after his mighty deliverance?

In His Loving Service,
Vineet

PS: Sign up for daily devotionals by clicking the email subscription icon at the top right of this page or by visiting http://groups.google.com/group/in-his-loving-service. Also, share this with your friends and family who need some encouragement and direction in their lives.

Wild Baby Elephant