Monday, October 3, 2023

AN ACCEPTABLE OFFERING

Today’s Reading: Leviticus 9-10

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion on the right-hand side).

 

The Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered in these caves in the region known as Qumran. These scrolls are a collection of 972 texts consisting of Biblical manuscripts from the Hebrew Bible as well as other documents. They were discovered almost 70 years ago in clay jars hidden in the caves which are located in the mountainsides on the northwest shore of the Dead Sea, from which they derive their name. These are the most ancient scrolls in existence. The scroll with the book of Isaiah, the “Gospel” of the Old Testament, is exactly as we have it in our Bibles today. Portions of every other Old Testament book except for Esther are in the scrolls. The Bible is reliable!!!

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where Reynold took the photo, click HERE.

Key Verse: Leviticus 10:11

…and that you may teach the children of Israel all the statutes which the Lord has spoken to them by the hand of Moses.

 

In today’s reading, we learn about the conduct of the priests and the judgment of God on misconduct. There are most serious consequences to the failure to follow God’s instructions, particularly for those whose calling is in leadership. The priests were not to drink any intoxicating beverages. Why? They must be fully aware at all times in order to distinguish right from wrong, the holy from the unholy, and the clean from the unclean, so that they could, by example as well as words, teach the people God’s ways. How often have God’s leaders and followers alike, lost our ability to discern what is right and then do it. The book of James should be regular reading for us, not just when our reading schedule requires it. It’s the New Testament book of Christian conduct. Consider the purpose of the Law for those who believe in Jesus… Read Galatians 3:23-27.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Thank You, Lord God, that I live in the time when I know Your grace, and I am justified by faith, not by the works of the Law. May I never take careless advantage of Your forgiveness, but may I live “With the smile of Your approval on my life.” In Jesus’ Name. Amen!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

I had the honour of interviewing the Hon. Joseph R. Smallwood, Premier of Newfoundland, and one of our Fathers of Canadian Confederation. He said, “I don’t drink alcoholic beverages because I may be just one drink away from becoming an alcoholic, and I don’t wish to take the chance of destroying my life and hurting everyone around me.” At 15 years old in the United Church in Brockville, I went forward to the front and signed a pledge that I would not partake of intoxicating drinks throughout my life. It was at what was called, “a temperance service.” I’ve never been sorry I did this. Keeping that promise has enabled me to minister with integrity to many alcoholics and those who were chemically dependent. I had a great-great-grandfather who was an alcoholic. He lost the farm and simply disappeared. His only known son, my great-grandfather, Joseph Mainse, was converted to Christ at a Methodist Church, and that changed the entire direction of my family.

Yours for knowing right from wrong and the holy from the unholy,

David

Sunday, October 2, 2022

CONSECRATION

Today’s Reading: Leviticus 8

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion on the right-hand side).

 

The High Priest washes his hands at the Brazen Laver. Behind him stands the replica of the Brazen Altar. During the Summers of 1997 and 2012 thousands visited the Crossroads Centre in Burlington, Ontario, to tour the replica of the Tabernacle which was created by Teen Missions International of Florida.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where my son, David Reynold, took the photo. click HERE.

Key Verse: Leviticus 8:5

And Moses said to the congregation, “This is what the Lord commanded to be done.”

 

The first seven chapters of Leviticus speak of the sacrifices. Chapter eight introduces the priesthood. As sinners we need a sacrifice. As believers we need a priest. We have both in Jesus Christ. He offered Himself as the final Sacrifice on the Cross, then He entered the heavenly sanctuary as our Priest. The ear, the thumb, and the big toe represented hearing the Word of God, doing the will of God, and going where God commands. Notice that Moses did not say, “This is expedient, agreeable, suitable or traditionally proper.” He did not lead by consensus. Seven times in this chapter the word “commanded” is used. In tomorrow’s reading, we’ll learn the results of obedience. Here’s a sneak peek…”The glory of the Lord shall appear to you” (Lev. 9:6).

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, grant me the grace of strict adherence to Your Word. I find the symbols of Your Priesthood in the Old Testament and the fulfillment of those symbols in Your life and teachings, as described in the Gospels. Thank You that You established “Truth” in these ways. Finally, You confirmed the truth in practice, evident in the lives of believers in the Acts of the Apostles and in the detailed writings of those Apostles. Please sanctify anew my hearing, my doing, and my going. I pray in Jesus’ Name. Amen!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

While still a teenager, I heard the Rector of a local Anglican (Episcopalion) Church say that it is absolutely essential to “Read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest the Word of God.” Some statements, such as this one, have been indelibly engraved on my mind. I’ve just read again Jeremiah 31:31-34 and Hebrews 8:7-13. You may want to click on those references and read them with me. I understand that God has put His laws in my mind and has written them on my heart. I make myself available to Him to do this every morning. What an amazing privilege to say, “I know Him,” and to be certain that He is merciful to my unrighteousness. My “sins and lawless deeds” He remembers no more!

Yours for putting equal portions of our minds and our hearts into a more thorough understanding of God’s Word,

David

Saturday, October 1, 2022

OFFERINGS

Today’s Reading: Leviticus 7

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion on the right-hand side).

 

To celebrate 50 years of God’s faithfulness, Crossroads brought the life-sized Teen Missions replica of the Tabernacle of Moses and set it up in the back parking lot for the summer of 2012. In the foreground is our version of “Tent of Meeting,” where the message of the reality behind the symbolism of the Tabernacle was explained to visitors.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where Reynold took the photo, click HERE.

Key Verse: Leviticus 7:12

If he offers it for a thanksgiving, then he shall offer, with the sacrifice of thanksgiving, unleavened cakes mixed with oil, unleavened wafers anointed with oil, or cakes of blended flour mixed with oil.

 

The sacrificial system was complex. It taught about the holiness of God, the sinfulness of the human family, and the need for sacrificial death in order to reconcile the perfect holiness of God and His forgiveness of sin. The system also made provision for joyful worship such as this thanksgiving offering and feast. Each offering had to include oil, the symbol of the Spirit of God. Let us welcome the Holy Spirit to our celebrations.

Last week we read Luke 24. We considered the reasons why thousands of Jerusalem’s Jews, including many Priests, believed in Jesus’ resurrection (click here to review that day’s blog). Recently I came across an amazing fact according to official Jewish records from that time. The sacrifices for Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, were not accepted by God from A.D. 30 until the destruction of the Temple by the Romans in A.D. 70. Check it out here. Jesus’ death and resurrection would have been at Passover A.D. 30, as He was born in 4 B.C, according to the best calculations.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Holy Spirit, please fill me for this new day so that I may bring with joy my offerings of thanksgiving. May I have the grace to celebrate well. In Jesus’ Name I pray. Amen!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

Recently around 6 a.m., I noticed that the sky was twinkling brightly with many stars. As our “day star” (the sun) rose in the east, the stars were less and less visible to my eyes. I decided to read 2 Peter. There I found in 1:19 these words, “We have the prophetic Word made more sure, which you do well to heed as a light that shines in a dark place, until the day dawns and the Day Star [original King James Version] rises in your hearts.” I began to sing a song: “Turn your eyes upon Jesus. Look full in His wonderful face. And the things of earth will grow strangely dim in the light of His glory and grace.” The Lord Jesus, our Day Star, shines so brightly that all the lesser lights become invisible. They are still there, but we see Jesus only. To complete my thanksgiving offering, I went into Google and found Michael W. Smith worshipping Jesus with this song (click here to view). Join Michael and me in singing this powerful chorus.

Yours for celebrating our Lord and Saviour,

David

Friday, September 30, 2022

HOLY

Today’s Reading: Leviticus 5-6

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion on the right-hand side).

 

Once a year the High Priest would enter the Holy of Holies to worship and stand in God’s presence.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where Reynold took the photo, click HERE.

Key Verse: Leviticus 6:25

Speak to Aaron and to his sons, saying, “This is the law of the sin offering: In the place where the burnt offering is killed, the sin offering shall be killed before the Lord. It is most holy…”

 

Moses and Aaron, his brother, were descendants of Levi, the third son of Jacob and Leah. They were known as Levites. God chose this tribe to provide the priests who were to represent the people before God. This third book, Leviticus, is filled with details of sacrifices, priestly duties, rituals and elaborate symbols. It is sometimes perceived as the most tedious book, but when we see its place in the divine plan, Leviticus can become an exciting book. Here, for the first time, we see a detailed account of God’s prescription for sin: a sacrificial system using blood to cover sin. Here are pictures of the life, work and Person of our great High Priest, Jesus Christ (Hebrews 8). All seven offerings were made by Jesus, the most holy Son of God. Meditate on Jesus, the final Sacrifice for sin (Hebrews 10:10). We no longer bring sacrifices, but rather present our bodies “a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is our reasonable service” (Romans 12:1).

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord Jesus, You bore the sin of all. You were sinless, though enduring the wrath of God against sin. You were the Father’s Delight. Though You were deprived of the light of Your Father’s countenance, You are “the Light of the world.” By Your Teacher, the Holy Spirit, I’ve discovered a great mystery accurately pictured in the offerings for sin. I pray for continued illumination of the “Truth” as I read Leviticus. Amen!

100 PERSONAL WORDS (plus a few more):

It was September of 1945, and I was 9 years old. Teased by other boys as the minister’s son, I stole an apple from the crate in front Mr. Kincaid’s grocery store to prove I was not a sissy. I destroyed the evidence, threw away the core, and returned home. The moment I entered our home, Mother looked intently at me and said, “What’s wrong, David?” I was discovered. I started to cry. Mother led me into my bedroom where I knelt, confessing my sin. When we got up and sat on the bed, Mother said, “God has forgiven your sin,” and then I heard the dreaded words I knew were coming, “You must make restitution for the wrong you did to Mr. Kincaid. Take 10 cents out of your own money, go back to the store, give Mr. Kincaid the money and ask his forgiveness.” This was too much for me. I pleaded with Mother, and she agreed that I could write a letter asking forgiveness, and enclose the dime, giving it to the grocer. Actually, I slipped the letter under a big box of cornflakes that sat on the counter. Within an hour, our phone at home rang and Mr. Kincaid said, “David, that was the bravest thing that you have done, and I forgive you. Thanks for the dime to pay for the apple. Please come and see me.” He ended up giving me my first job, delivering groceries. He said, “I need someone I can trust to bring the money back from the customer.” Mother died when I was 12. Someday, I’ll check with her for her side of the story. She may have been reading Leviticus 5:16 about restitution.

Yours for the assurance of forgiveness of sin,

David

Thursday, September 29, 2022

THE BLOOD

Today’s Reading: Leviticus 3-4

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion on the right-hand side).

 

Rev. Rick Hiebert, playing the role  the High Priest, is applying the blood of the sacrifice to the horns of the Brazen Altar. This was part of the Tabernacle of Moses, which was erected in the back parking lot of the Crossroads Centre in Burlington, Ontario, during the summers of 1997 and 2012.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where Reynold took the photo, click HERE.

Key Verse: Leviticus 4:17-18a

Then the priest shall dip his finger in the blood and sprinkle it seven times before the Lord, in front of the veil. And he shall put some of the blood on the horns of the altar which is before the Lord, which is in the tabernacle of meeting…

 

The first three chapters of this book explain the intricacies of the “sweet savour” offerings. Six times we read “a sweet aroma to the Lord.” In chapter four, “sacrifices for sin” are introduced. Again we read, “the priest shall burn it on the altar for a sweet aroma to the Lord.” When words are repeated over and over, we recognize that the subject is of great importance to the Lord. Why was it “sweet”? The love that God has for His human family is the very reason He created us in the first place. Here is a most graphic picture of the suffering of Christ on the altar of the Cross. Jesus took His own blood to the altar, which is before the throne of God in Heaven, and presented it as the ultimate and final “sweet aroma to the Lord.” The sacrifice of Christ and the shedding of His blood, even though painful to God in the extreme, was the only way for God’s love to be consummated. It is hard to understand from a human perspective. The book of Hebrews deals with this in detail. Read Hebrews 7:25-27 and 9:18-28.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord Jesus, the offering of Your precious blood on the altar in Heaven is truly sweet to God and to me too. Only by this means could Your love for me and my love for You be complete. Please give me the grace to never take my cleansing in Your blood for granted, but rather to cherish intensely what You’ve done for me. Amen!!! (1 John 1:7-9)

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

As I start the Leviticus blogs, I remember why, back in the 70’s, I switched from a one year through the Bible reading program to two years. For many years before that, I could not help but notice that the majority of people were dropping out of the program somewhere in Leviticus. It was simply too much for most people. My Dad had always read three chapters on weekdays and five on Sundays. This enabled him to read it all in one year. I did the same, but when I changed to the two-year program, at least 70% of those who started with me completed reading the entire Bible. I could tell by the way people ordered the printed materials for the next quarter. Of course, now with the internet, I’m expecting that at least 70% to 90% of you who start with me will read consistently. Perhaps I’m too optimistic, but know that I pray fervently for all who read with me. I’ve designed this service so that a person can start at any point, going back and forth between the Hebrew (Old Testament) Scriptures and the Greek (New Testament) Scriptures, and complete the reading in two years. So Ron, Ann and the team at Crossroads and I began releasing the entire two-year program for the third time, beginning in Matthew, this past June 3rd, 2016!!!

Yours for the most thorough understanding of God’s Word possible for all who don’t have the opportunity to attend Bible College or a Seminary, and even for those who have attended such institutions who desire to receive the increase in faith that comes only from continuing in the Word daily,

David

Wednesday, September 28, 2022

VOLUNTEER

Today’s Reading: Leviticus 1-2

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion on the right-hand side).

 

Inside the full-scale replica of the Tabernacle of Moses, behind the Brazen Altar and the Brazen Laver, you can see the entrance to the Holy Place. A priest would put blood on the horns of the altar (in this photo the blood is not real).  The Living Bible translation of Hebrews 10:19 says, “Now we may walk right into the very Holy of Holies, where God is, because of the blood of Jesus. This is the fresh, new, life-giving way that Christ has opened up for us by tearing the curtain…His human body…to let us into the holy presence of God.”

 

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where Reynold took the photo, click HERE.

Key Verse: Leviticus 1:3

If his offering is a burnt sacrifice of the herd, let him offer a male without blemish; he shall offer it of his own free will at the door of the tabernacle of meeting before the Lord.

 

It was a bloody, awful place of death. The fires which consumed the sacrifice on the Brazen Altar represented Hell. People make jewel-encrusted ornate crosses for decoration, but we should not mistake the fact that the altar on which Jesus suffered the fires of Hell and death was not pretty. It was an awful place! Only the eternal, infinite God-in-flesh, Jesus, could take the sins of all of us and suffer complete isolation from His Father God as sin demanded. Only Jesus could take the instrument of the most horrible method of execution and turn it into the glory of the Cross.

The word “voluntary” emphasizes, with great clarity, the under-girding reason for burnt offerings. Jesus went to the Cross as a “voluntary” Sacrifice. The Cross was the place where an eternal settlement was reached between ultimate justice and the holy, without blemish, Victim. We should meditate on this, partake in communion with other believers, and read more fully today, if possible, Hebrews 10:1-25.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

I confess my sinfulness to You, Lord Jesus, and I voluntarily give myself to identify with Your death on the Cross. Please help me to believe and understand that I now live in the power of Your life. I’m Your volunteer for living for You. In Your Name, dear Saviour, I pray. Amen!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

I’ll never forget the day at Expo ’92 in Seville, Spain when the Salvation Army band from Bristol, England, marched through the streets and played the hymn, In the Cross of Christ I Glory, “…towering over the wrecks of time.” That day, Sept 1st, was the day of honour for Saudi Arabia. The Saudis brought a 747 load of young men from their Imam training school in Mecca. They distributed 200,000 flags bearing the inscription in the Arabic language, “Allah is God and Mohammad is His Prophet.” At the first intersection, the band had to wait for the Saudi trams to pass. Hell knew and Heaven knew the words on the flag in Arabic and the words to the hymn the band was playing, “Would you be free from your burden of sin? There’s power in the Blood.” The second intersection where they met, the Salvation Army band got there first and the Saudis had to stop. To me the symbolism and the power of spiritual warfare was never so obvious. The “Power in the Blood” defeated the effort to convert people to Islam. The next day at our Crossroads Pavilion of Promise at Expo ’92 (photo below), there were not just 700-800 decisions for Christ, as was usual daily total, but over 1,200 precious people made first time decisions to give their lives fully to Jesus. Nothing else had changed on earth, but in the heavenlies the victory of the Cross had been clearly declared! The number of daily decisions for Christ remained at over 1,200 for the remaining six weeks of the Expo. What had really happened? I think about this often.

Yours to encourage us all to voluntarily serve the Lord,

David

The “Pabellon de la Promesa” (Pavilion of Promise) at Expo ’92 in Seville, Spain.

 

Tuesday, September 27, 2022

GREAT JOY

Today’s Reading: Luke 24

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion on the right-hand side).

 

This is the entrance of the Garden Tomb, where the body of Jesus may have been laid. Over 2,000 years ago, this large trough was carved from the rock so that a huge stone could be rolled in front of the doorway.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where Reynold took the photo, click HERE.

 

Key Verse: Luke 24:52

And they worshiped Him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy…

 

There are many, many proofs of the truth of the resurrection. Those who believed numbered in the thousands in Jerusalem. Approximately 3,000 people believed on Him on the Day of Pentecost (most of these were pilgrims from Galilee and elsewhere) and some 5,000 (mainly from Jerusalem) saw the lame man healed and responded to Peter’s message in the courtyard of the Temple (Acts 3:1-26 and 4:1-4). These counts referred to the men, then add in their families, and you have a huge number of witnesses! Later, in Acts 6:7, we read that “the number of disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priests were obedient to the faith.” It has been estimated that when the authorities began to persecute the followers of Jesus, at least half the population of Jerusalem were believers in Him. If thousands of people were lying, the authorities would have been all over them. But there is no record of a contradiction in the minutes of the Sanhedrin, known as the Mishna. No one could ever tell me that Jesus simply swooned and escaped the city or was substituted by someone else, as Muslims believe, or that His body was removed from the tomb as a cover up, as the High Priest’s office claimed. These “great joy” people were Jews who worshipped Jesus as God! This all happened within a few months of Jesus’ death, resurrection and ascension. If we aren’t rejoicing too, let us check our pulses to see if we’re still alive!

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord Jesus, I pray that today and every day I’ll be a “great rejoicing person.” This kind of joy in believing will result in believers being multiplied in my community and in my Church. I love You Jesus! Amen!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

The most marked up, finger-printed page in my Bible is page 1256, Hebrews 12:1-3. If I ever become weary or discouraged, here’s where I go. I could just ask you to look it up, but it’s so important to me that I’ll type verses 2 & 3: “Looking unto Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith, Who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider Him Who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, lest You become weary or discouraged in your souls.” Once again, as I type this blog, I am considering Him. I cannot help myself. I’m filled with “great rejoicing.”

Yours for every weary and discouraged person,

David

Monday, September 26, 2022

READ CAREFULLY

Today’s Reading: Luke 23

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion on the right-hand side).

 

This Roman road made of paving stones is below the modern city level of Jerusalem. It is the road Jesus would have walked on while carrying His cross to Calvary.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where Reynold took the photo, click HERE.

Key Verse: Luke 23:27-28

And a great multitude of the people followed Him, and women who also mourned and lamented Him. But Jesus, turning to them, said, “Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for Me, but weep for yourselves and for your children…”

 

In the movie, Passion of the Christ, they got it wrong. They showed only two or three women weeping. Notice the word “also.” The great multitude had just arrived in the city after spending the night in neighbouring communities. Thousands had come from the Galilee for the Passover in Jerusalem. The “great multitude” wept also. More proof is found in verses 48 & 49. “The whole crowd…beat their breasts.” It was not the average Jew who crucified Jesus, it was the crowd who were on the payroll of the High Priest. The High Priest and his early morning employees were the ones who cried, “Crucify Him…His blood be upon us and upon our children.” The twisting of Scripture to condemn all the Jewish people has been a tool of Satan to promote anti-semitism, which eventually resulted in the Holocaust of the Nazis. This illustrates the supreme importance of a careful study of God’s Word, Word by Word!!!

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord Jesus, You said that the Spirit of Truth would guide us into all truth. I’m asking, Holy Spirit, that You will do that for me today. By Your illumination of Your Word, I’ll do my best to pay attention to little words like “also.” I weep to think of the tragedies perpetrated on the Jewish people because Satan messed with the minds of those who either ignorantly or deliberately misinterpreted these Scriptures. Please give us a new start in our relationships with Your ancient people.  Amen!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

How well I remember making statements like, “The fickle crowd shouted their praises of Jesus on Palm Sunday and just five days later were shouting, ‘Crucify Him.'” I was 100% wrong. They were not the same people. The small area known as Pilate’s Judgment Hall would hold only about 300 people. It was 6 a.m. when the first shift of those on the High Priest’s payroll arrived for work. The great multitude would not have arrived in the city until about 9 a.m. I’ve prayed fervently that I will be more careful in my studies and my efforts to teach. There is another example of the twisting of Scripture in today’s reading. It’s in verse 43. Back in the 1840’s, a Brooklyn, NY, pastor moved the comma from before the word “today” to after it. He began to preach that the thief was not in Paradise with Jesus the day of his death, but only in the future resurrection. This was the beginning of the Watchtower Society, otherwise known as Jehovah’s Witnesses. The pastor’s name was Charles Russell. He continued to twist other Scriptures to go against the historical understanding of the Word of God. There are no commas in the original language, but a comparison of the rest of the Scriptures would show that in English the comma belongs where it is in our Bibles. I pledge to pay careful attention to detail in this blog and always.

Yours for a more thorough understanding of the Word of God,

David

P.S. Once again, here is a segment from 100 Huntley Street. Moira Brown interviews Dr. Andy Bannister. This again is for the purpose of emphasizing the reliability of the Bible and how it answers life’s toughest questions (click here).

 

Sunday, September 25, 2022

SIMON, SIMON

NOTE FROM RON MAINSE: It was five years ago today that Dad’s physical suffering ended, and he was ushered into the presence of the Lord. A memorial website has been created with highlights of his life, as well as a link to his homegoing celebration service. You can find the website HERE. While he is greatly missed here on earth, his legacy lives on in many ways, including this daily blog. I trust that it’s an ongoing blessing to you.

Today’s Reading: Luke 22

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion on the right-hand side).

 

Tourists look down into what is believed to be the ruins of Peter’s house in Capernaum. There is evidence that there were several enlargements of the space. This may have been the place of worship for the earliest Christian Church in the Galilee. I preached in a church building in a village in Russia that was still  a private home. It had been enlarged several times. Building permits were not given for church buildings, but you could add to an existing house.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where Reynold took the photo, click HERE.

Key Verses: Luke 22:31-32

And the Lord said, “Simon, Simon! Indeed, Satan has asked for you that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, (Peter) that your faith should not fail; and when you have returned to Me, strengthen your brethren.”

 

Believe it! Jesus prayed for Peter, and He prays for us too. Here is the statement of that fact! “Therefore, He is also able to save to the uttermost those who come to God through Him, [you and me] since He ever lives to make intercession for them” (Hebrews 7:25). What confidence we have in His intercession! The Lord Jesus was fully aware that Peter was about to curse and swear, declaring that he did not even know who Jesus is! So how does Jesus respond to Peter…in anger and judgment? Not at all. The Lord looked beyond Peter’s failure to his repentance, and his faith and bold leadership was restored. Jesus knew that in just 50 days, Peter would be filled with the Holy Spirit and would preach a powerful message on the street to thousands. Jesus has a plan for each one of us. He sees restoration following failure. Never give up! Repent and move forward. Judas gave up after his failure. Peter or Judas…which example will we follow?

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Dear Lord, I confess my failure. Just as You saw Peter’s tears and witnessed his repentance, even so I repent and I am confident that You pray for me that my faith will not fail. I receive, by faith, Your forgiveness and restoration. I’m ready to start this new day in my service for You. Fill me with Your Spirit I pray. I praise You. I worship You. Thank You! Thank You! Thank You! I am continuing to exalt Your Holy Name…

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

I identify with Peter. He tried to help by attacking the servant of the High Priest. He tried by following Jesus after His arrest and stood where he could see Jesus before the High Priest. He failed to stand up for Jesus. After eye contact with Jesus, he went out into the darkness and wept bitterly over his failure. How I thank God for His mercy and grace. Peter saw Jesus crucified, buried, and resurrected from the dead. How else could anyone explain Peter’s transformation? Jesus baptized Peter with the Holy Spirit, and the Word of God became like a fire inside him! I know 100% for sure that Jesus is alive!!! I, too, have been filled with the Holy Spirit! Now, all I have to do is open my mouth and share Jesus wisely and boldly with others. Jesus intercedes for me as He did for Peter, and Jesus’ prayers are always answered “YES!!!” WOW!!!

Yours for a consistent, clear, thoughtful, mostly gentle and always bold, witness for Jesus,

David

P.S. Here’s another powerful witness with Moira Brown interviewing Dr. Andy Bannister on 100 Huntley Street. The Bible is reliable and our faith in God is totally reasonable! (click here).

Saturday, September 24, 2022

TAKE HEED

Today’s Reading: Luke 20-21

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion on the right-hand side).

 

In the Western Wall tunnel of Jerusalem is this model of the Temple in which Jesus worshipped, turned over the money changer’s tables, engaged with the religious officials, and ministered truth and love. In the building which this represents, the former lame man danced to the amazement of all. Then Peter preached and about 5,000 became believers in Jesus, including many of the priests (Acts 4:4 & Acts 6:7).

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where Reynold took the photo, click HERE.

Key Verse: Luke 20:25

And He said to them, “Render therefore to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.”

 

Today’s reading concludes with, “take heed.” Here is Jesus’ conclusion to almost 100 verses of teaching, “Watch therefore and pray always.” This blog can help us do that! We learn from the happenings here that when someone argues with Jesus, they don’t win the argument. The “coin” is a case in point. The Jews were groaning under the heel of Rome. Jesus’ answer to the tax question was simple, yet profound. Today, we struggle with our responsibilities to government and to God. We use money printed or minted by government, yet, our ultimate values are not government actions, but God Himself. God will put the final period in the last history book of this age. Back in 1967 Billy Graham said, “For the first time in over 2,000 years, Jerusalem is ruled by Jews. The ‘time of the Gentiles’ is over (Luke 21:24). Soon we will see ‘the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory'” (Luke 21:27).

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, here I am. I’m determined to “take heed.” By Your grace, I believe that at Your return, I will “escape all these things that will come to pass.” Please help me to be prepared at any moment to welcome Your coming. Please give me the gift of diligence, consistency, and purity so that, because of Your forgiveness of my sin, I’ll be ready! Amen!

 PERSONAL WORDS:

I remember an old preacher saying, regarding those who told the story of the seven husbands who married the woman in Jesus’ story, “They thought by the inch, spoke by the yard, and should be moved by the foot!” I’ve read chapters 20 & 21 twice and some portions three times. Of course, I’ve read these words before. I’ve even taught through the entire book of Luke at a Bible Camp recently. Nevertheless, I’ve had fresh insight from the Holy Spirit today, such as from Luke 21:34… I am not weighed down with carousing and drunkenness, but I confess that I struggle with the “cares of this life.” I sometimes think that at 80, I’m too old for the plans I keep making (for when I’m released from the hospital). I believe God isn’t finished with me yet!

Yours for a more perfect understanding of God’s Word, and for His plans and purposes for my life,

David