In the New Year, Ring Those Bells and Don’t Forget the Pomegranates!

EXODUS 28:33-35 AMPLIFIED BIBLE:

[33] And you shall make pomegranates of blue, and scarlet [stuff] around about its skirts, with gold bells between them;  [34] A gold bell and a pomegranate, a gold bell and a pomegranate, round about on the skirts of the robe.  [35] Aaron shall wear the robe when he ministers, and its sound shall be heard when he goes [alone] into the Holy of Holies before the Lord and when he comes out, lest he die.”

I just finished my study and investigation of God’s Word in the Book of EXODUS.  There is so much symbolism, pictures connecting the OT with the NT.  The three verses referenced above in Exodus 28:33-35 and Exodus 39:24-26 are no exception.  Can we take the PRIEST’S ROBE description and find some “hidden wisdom” to apply to our own spiritual life?

“The secret things belong unto the Lord our God, but the things which are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all of the words…”  (Deuteronomy 29:29 AMP).

THE PRIESTLY GARMENT:

Pomegranates & Bells
Pomegranates & Bells

Everything about the high priest and his garment described in the referenced verses is a picture of our eternal High Priest, Jesus Christ and every item of the garment holds a TRUTH.

Now you might be thinking at this point, “What does the details of the priestly garment in Exodus have to do with my role in the New Covenant?”  Scripture is quite clear in the answer:

You also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood…” (1 Peter 2:5)

“But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His wonderful light” (1 Peter 2:9).

Our Representative in Heaven and HIGH PRIEST:

TODAY, Jesus entered the true Holy of Holies in heaven, representing us before God, as the Perfect Man, the eternal High Priest after the order of Melchizedek (Hebrews 5:5, 10; 6:20).  His work on the Cross is so perfect–this High Priest did no sin, knew no sin that He is perfectly qualified to represent ALL the believers of the world.

Because of the perfection and the eternal nature of this High Priest of ours, we are eternally SAVED and BLESSED.

Today, we don’t see JESUS in the natural but He is representing us as the PERFECT HIGH PRIEST in heaven.

RING THOSE GOLDEN BELLS!

There’s a quotation from Judaic writings (the “Talmud”) that fits in nicely with the golden bells on the hem of the High Priest’s garment:

“The BELLS said to the fruit-bearing tree, 

‘Why do you not make any noise?’  They replied

‘Our fruits are sufficient advertisement for us’.”

The Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur)–

The high priest garments
The high priest garments

On the Day of Atonement, once per year, the high priest would undress himself of the glorious garments in the Holy Place to make a SACRIFICE.  He wore only the “holy” coat of fine-twined linen with the hat/skull-cap (the mitre).

The high priest dress was ALL WHITE  entering the Holy of Holies, the presence of God; whereas, the Tent of Meeting, he wore blue, purple, scarlet, and gold.  But this is only a visible difference…because “WHITE” is the sum of the other colors.

The ‘Tinkling’ Bells…

All year-long, until this day, the BELLS on the high priest’s robe of blue would ring clearly and the children of Israel know that he was ministering before the LORD MOST HIGH for them.

When the priest put on the garments once again for glory and beauty after the ritual was completed (Leviticus 16:23), the BELL would ring out to God’s people who the SACRIFICE made earlier had been accepted by GOD on their behalf and that their high priest was still alive.

DISCLAIMING THE FABLE…

According to the fable spread throughout Christianity today,

“…so awful was the presence of Holiness in the Holiest Place and so fearful were the Jews, that the priest who entered into the Holiest might not be approved of by God from a committed sin, that there was a long rope tied to his ankle which extended into the outer Court as he would walk into the Holy Room beyond the Veil.  After a certain amount of time, if they failed to hear the BELLS on the hem of his garment ringing and he failed to reappear, he was assumed dead and was pulled from the Room by this rope, since no one dare enter the “…Holiest Place to secure the dead body of the priest”  [*See Footnote [i]].

Aren’t you glad that when you enter your church on Sunday morning, or you kneel next to your bed at night to worship and praise God, someone doesn’t attached a rope to your ankle just in case your SACRIFICE of Worship isn’t worthy?

God’s Word Is Always Specific in Detail–

If a rope was to be tied on the ankle, God’s Word would state which ankle, how much time to wait, and how long the rope would be and what it would be made of.  Furthermore, the Glory Garments were not worn in the Holy of Holies to sprinkle the blood on this one-time-a-year ritual.

Our Great High Priest in Heaven…

Remember everything about the high priest and his garment is A PICTURE!  So what do the GOLDEN BELLS mean to believers today?

 

GOLDEN BELLS
GOLDEN BELLS

GOD speaks of divine RIGHTEOUSNESS–

It’s the BEAUTIFUL gift of righteousness by FAITH given to every believer.  THE BELLS make a chime that always conveys a message.

JESUS said in the gospel of John that the Holy Spirit will convict the world of sin and the BELIEVERS of righteousness because Jesus goes to be with the Father.

What was Jesus talking about?

The GOLDEN BELLS–

The Holy spirit is pictured by the Wind, “Ruach” in Hebrew.  When the BELLS ring out from the Holy place, a message is conveyed– every believer is righteous because JESUS’ perfect work on the Cross.

Today, the Holy spirit convicts the believer, not of sin, but of righteousness, even when we sin, because JESUS is still alive representing us perfectly before the Father in the Holy of Holies in Heaven.

Also, the “gold bells” is a picture of our mouth and tongue inside.  In fact, in my detective work, I found the hanging part within the BELL is called the tongue!  That certainly gave me a vivid picture.

The Gospel Ringing Out!

I believe the “golden bells” are an emblem of the Gospel, as preached by Christ Himself, His apostles and ministers; your pastor and yes, even you and I as we should be demonstrating the Gospel Message in word and deed to those around us!

The “Sound” of the Gospel Needs to be Heard…unless of course, the church is DEAD!

This “sound” is not a musical sound.  The “SOUND” I’m referring to is a sound that “describes”: THE SOUND OF LOVE, GRACE, MERCY, PEACE, PARDON, RIGHTEOUSNESS, LIFE, and SALVATION; music to one’s ears when heard.

AND JUST IN CASE…DON’T FORGET THE POMEGRANATES!

“The POMEGRANATES” on Aaron might be an emblem of his priesthood, the ceremonial Law.  pomegranatefruit

They were also shadows and types of, and of Jesus Himself, of VIRTUE, ODOUR, FRAGRANCY…

—  His SUFFERINGS, SACRIFICE, INTERCESSION, also of the CHURCH…called an “orchard of pomegranates”  (Song of Solomon 4:13; John 15:5; Ephesians 5:9).

The ORCHARD OF POMEGRANATES consisting of various members, as the pomegranates of various seeds, or grains that should perpetuate the fruit’s effectiveness to all–growth, spiritual fruit, harvest, etc..

JESUS speaks to all us when he says “…every healthy (sound) tree bears good fruit [worthy of admiration], but the sickly (decaying, worthless) tree bears bad (worthless) fruit” [“pomegranates”] (Matthew 7:17).

The JUICE of the FRUIT which the blood of Christ may resemble and their hanging on the hem of the garment may signify the ACCEPTABLENESS of them through the righteousness of Christ Jesus and the GOSPEL MESSAGE produces; and particularly the BELLS and POMEGRANATES signify together the SOUND DOCTRINE (Titus 1:9)–a savoury life and conversation to those around us–believers and unbelievers.

CHRISTIAN BELIEVERS ARE GOD’S PRIESTS ON EARTH:

“You are a CHOSEN race, a royal priesthood…”  (1 Peter 2:9).

We are dedicated as PRIESTS to be ministers of God’s Word.

Are your garments in order?  Are the “golden bells” ringing out in your community, your church, your family?

Are the “pomegranates”, the fruit of your faithfulness, your righteousness demonstrating who you belong to in this world?

If your answers to the questions are “NO” or “SOMETIMES”….the people that live near your church may just think you’re DEAD!

And just maybe, for a visual effect for emphasis, there could be a tub full of ROPES at the sanctuary entrance this next Sunday– to slip around some ankles, just in case of an emergency.

The New Year Is Coming–

So in this upcoming New Year, the ringing of your golden bells should be heard; the Word Seed of the pomegranates should be spoken: separated and planted.  And perhaps, as people drive by, maybe even stop in the parking lot, they might hear the gold bells ringing and see the orchard of pomegranate trees planted all about the grounds!

2120393608_71541f1768
And All Year Long!

 


Footnotes & Credits:

Robe of High Priest Image: http://www.mishkamministries.org

Photos:   Photo Pin

Footnote [i] – http://www.delrifkah Feb. 12th, 2011.www.

Commentaries:  Gill’s Exposition of the Whole Bible – Exodus 28:34 Commentary.

 Bible Translation: Amplified Bible.

“Yep, You Are One Of A Kind!”

TEXT: Exodus 31:1-11  *[Note: It would be helpful in reading this POST, if your Bible was near]. 

You're One-of-a-Kind
You’re One-of-a-Kind

 

Psalm 33:15 (a):  “He made their hearts”

YOU ARE UNIQUE – [See Footnote [i] for the following]

“You are unique.  Even though you share many things in common among other people, you are essentially one of a kind.  No one else has been given exactly the same makeup as God has given you.  Your face, your fingerprints, your voice, and your genetic makeup are matched by no one else’s.  Likewise, God has handcrafted you with your personality, your unique set of talents and motivations, and your special “bent in life.”

After reading the above source, I find that it all means one thing–you and I have a “one of a kind,” unique purpose set before us in life.

As an older brother by seven years, I’m sure my little brother believed while growing up, my unique purpose in life: To irritate him in any way I could.

According to the verses in Exodus 31, God gave BEZALEL the ability to work with gold, silver, stone and other materials.  God had placed in this man one of a kind abilities, and now God was planning to use these talents He placed in Bezalel to His glory.

[1] AND THE Lord said to Moses,  [2] See, I have called by name Bezalel son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah.  [3] And I have filled him with the Spirit of God, in wisdom and ability, in understanding and intelligence, and in knowledge, and in all kinds of craftsmanship.”

God wants to use your originality for His glory.

Notice the Interesting Progression that Takes Place.

God gets right to the point of a command in our lives.  He doesn’t go around commanding everybody but has an unusual way; a unique way, on how He prepares each one of us for a specific task.

1.  GOD CALLS US (Vs. 2):

BEZALEL was called by name and God knew what He wanted accomplished.

It’s not hard for God to pick who He wants for a specific task, He already knows who He wants–He prepared them.  It’s not like in grade school–hoping we would get picked for a team.

GOD picked Bezalel because He PREPARED Bezalel–so He called the man He wanted by name–“Bezalel, step forward, I have a job for you.”

God has called you by name.  

You are one of a kind to Him because He already prepared you for the task at hand.  You’re NOT on the sideline waiting to be chosen; if you are a Christian, God has already called you.

Do you know your calling?  God has PROMISED to reveal it to you if you will ask, seek, and knock.

2.  GOD APPOINTS US (Vs. 6):

“And behold, I have appointed with him Aholiab son of Ahisamach, of the tribe of Dan; and to ALL who are wisehearted I have given wisdom and ability to make all that I have commanded you:”

Proverbs 10:8 says, “A WISE HEART takes orders; an empty head will come unglued”  (The Message).

Over the years, God has called me to do special jobs in the Kingdom: Write, produce and direct Christian Drama; sing in choirs, ensembles; teach and of course write weekly blogs.

Under the Law, God chose Prophets, Priests and kings by placing His ANOINTING on them to accomplish His mission.

God’s Grace…

In this period of GRACE or the CHURCH AGE, God places His ANOINTING on believers to accomplish His plan on the earth today.

We ALL RECEIVE His Spirit when we entered into the Kingdom of God, but God gives an extra measure of His anointing; those who “seek first the Kingdom of Heaven and His righteousness.”

What comes next?

In Exodus 31, the next thing that happens after God’s call of BEZALEL is that He APPOINTS others to work along side of him. We all need help.

God’s Calling–

For the sake of discussion, a looking at this point is the next step God takes in each of us.  For instance, for God to APPOINT Aholiab, Aholiab had to be first CALLED by God.

Before the Apostles were appointed as apostles, they first had to be called.  Aholiab had to first ANSWER the call before he could be appointed to help.

Before God can APPOINT you, you must ANSWER the call.  When you do, He’ll appoint you to a task.  Like Aholiab was appointed for a specific task, you have been appointed.

3.  GOD DOES THE GIVING (Vs. 6 b ):

DOES GOD CALL us before He gives us a skill–doesn’t matter.  God GIVES the skill.

DOES GOD APPOINT us before He gives us a skill–doesn’t matter.  God GIVES the skill.

You are so “one of a kind” to God; so unique where you live, where you go to church, where you work, that He has given you a specific skill to fulfill the call in your life.

Many people are slow to answer the call for SERVICE because they fear their work is not good enough; they feel that the work that is noticed is the only way to serve.  But that’s not true.

God needed men like Moses, Aaron and Joshua…

BUT…God also needed Bezalel!  The work God called him to do was such importance, God gave him a special anointing for the task.

“I have filled him with the Spirit of God” ~ verse 3 a.

–  Moses had the spirit of Administration and prophecy.

–  Aaron had the spirit for the priesthood.

–  Joshua had the spirit for conquest.

BUT…Bezalel had the spirit for design and building–he was certainly one of a kind.

Sometimes we question why God does things the way He does–chooses some people and not others.  Let’s try to remember that HIS GIFTS are distributed, not as we will, but as He wills.  So if this question, “Why not me?” enters your heart, get over it!

There’s something in our name–

I find it interesting and informative when looking up given names and their meanings.  My given name is MELVIN DALE… its meaning is as follows: “Mel”–Chief.  “Dale” means a valley.  So putting them together, “Chief of the Valley” or ‘strong leader,’ and the meaning has played out in my life.

BEZALEL ‘s [ BEZALEEL, BESELEEL]  name means “under God’s shadow”  [See Footnote [ii] ].  He never became the great statesman and organizer that Moses did–nor even “chief of the valley”.

His voice was never heard to preach to the Israelite assembly.

Neither was he qualified to the priesthood.

He was not gifted in military, was not able to go along with Joshua’s adventures in the forefront of Israel’s army.

Yet this man had a DIVINE GIFT, a “spiritual anointing” to fulfill the task.  And yes, he truly was, “One of a kind.”

Service to the Lord —

So, would you rather find yourself in the ANOINTING first or the TITLE before your name?

Finding Ourselves in the “Shadow of God’s Wings”–

EXODUS 19:4
EXODUS 19:4

GOD equates Himself with a bird in Scripture when He tells the Israelites that He carried them on “eagles’ wings and brought you to Myself” (Exodus 19:4).

Again Scripture gives us encouragement in serving with the “spiritual anointing”— Psalm 63:7

~A Psalm of David~

“For You have been my help and

in the shadow of Your wings

will I rejoice.”

4.  GOD COMMANDS US  (Vs. 6 c):

Whenever it is that God puts the skills in us  is debatable but the COMMAND always comes at the end.  God doesn’t command us to do something if He hasn’t first, called us; second, appointed us; and thirdly, put the skill in us.

You Are One Of A Kind:

No one else has your abilities and talents combined–with your own unique personality and standing in life– to the job God has called you to do.

The New Year’s Challenge – “How does God want me to serve?”

SEEK GOD’S CALLING IN YOUR LIFE.

Let the BEZALEL ANOINTING rest on your work, it may be just a “hello” to someone, a kind word to a friend, maybe a cup of water in the name of the Lord.

Whatever the task, know that you’re ONE OF A KIND in the Kingdom of God and do it with all of your might!

“Whatever may be your task, work at it heartily (from the soul), as [something done] for the Lord and not for men.  Knowing [with all certainly] that it is from the Lord [and not from men] that you will receive the inheritance which is your [real] reward.  [The One Whom] you are actually serving [is] the Lord Christ (the Messiah)”  (Colossians 3:23-24 AMP).

 


Footnotes:  [i] Urbana.org;  [ii] Harper’s Bible Dictionary/Bezaleel, pg. 110.

Bible Translations: Amplified Bible; The Message.

Photo Credits:  Photo Pin; Google Images/Exodus 19:4.

 

Beholding the SHEKINAH GLORY

God's  GLORY Revealed
God’s GLORY Revealed

Seeing JESUS–experiencing His presence, becomes very important during the Christmas Season–in our gift buying, house decorating. cookie making, house straightening, church activities, etc…  But how about God’s GLORY, His manifested presence everyday?  Do I really want a spiritual change, a GLORY ATTITUDE in all that I do?

The Attitude of Change During the Christmas Season–

BUT…we are not changed by what we do, but by what we see.  Evidently not many of us have seen Him, because there’s something that certainly happens when you are changed from one degree of GLORY to another.

Something dramatic happens when we come in contact with the King of kings, Lord of lords, the real living JESUS.  The word “CHANGE” lets me know there’s something better to be had or there’s no need for a change.

OUR “first birth”…

At Christmas, believers reflect on the birth of Jesus in the manger.  But do we reflect on our “first birth?”

“Among these we as well as you [I’ll insert my own personal name–“MEL” for the word “you”] once lived and conducted ourselves in the passions of our flesh  [our behavior governed by our corrupt and sensual nature], obeying the impulses of the flesh and the thoughts of the mind [our cravings dictated by our senses and our dark imaginings].   We were the by nature children of  [God’s] wrath and heirs of [His] indignation, like the rest of mankind”  (Ephesians 2:3 AMP).

Wow, that really sounds harsh in the reading:  “Totally depraved, dead in trespasses and sin.”

The NATURE we received at our natural birth, the NATURE of father Adam, is corrupt, unable to do a thing to please God.  In order for this to CHANGE, there must be a NEW BIRTH–John 3:6-7:

“What is born of [from] the flesh is flesh [of the physical is physical]; and what is born of the Spirit is spirit.  Marvel not  [do not be surprised, astonished] at My telling you,  You must all be born anew (from above).”

THE “NEW BIRTH”…

Our new spiritual birth

 

The “NEW BIRTH” is not a “rebirth.”  The TWO are totally distinct and separate and always will be.

It’s hard to understand the fact, even after we have been “BORN AGAIN”, there’s the deception of the FLESH remains in the believer.  He doesn’t do away with the “old man” but now there are TWO NATURES within me.

The apostle Paul confirmed this in Romans 7:14-17:

[14] We know that the Law is spiritual; but I am a creature of the flesh  [carnal, unspiritual], having been sold into slavery under [the control of] sin.

[15] For I do not understand my own actions [I am baffled, bewildered].  I do not practice or accomplish what I wish, but I do the very thing that I loathe [which my moral instinct condemns].

[16] Now if I do [habitually] what is contrary to my desire,  [that means that]  I acknowledge and agree that the Law is good (morally excellent) and I take sides with it.

[17] However, it is no longer I who do the deed, but the sin [principle] which is at home in me and has possession of me.

WE ARE NO MORE OF THIS WORLD WHEN….

When… we RECEIVE Christ Jesus.  But the FLESH is still with us and must be dealt with.

In my own life, there has not been one single spiritual experience; but a series of burials and succession of funerals.  About the time I think I have the OLD MAN buried, he seems to have the ability to RESURRECT! – “That which is born of the flesh is flesh.”

GOD CALLED MOSES – Exodus 24:12-18:

In EXODUS 24 is where an invitation is given to Moses; calling him up into the mountain (Mt. Sinai) for orientation to teach the LAW.

“There they saw the God of Israel.  Under His feet there seemed to be a surface of brilliant blue lapis lazuli, as clear as the sky itself” – Exodus 24:10 (NLT).

“And the GLORY of the Lord settled down on Mount Sinai, and the cloud covered it for six days.  On the seventh day the LORD called to Moses from inside the cloud.  To the Israelites at the foot of the mountain, the GLORY of the LORD appeared at the summit like a consuming fire” – Exodus 24:16, 17 (NLT).

MOSES is taken closer while others remain at a distance.  MOSES is instructed on Sinai for 40 days and nights.

Preparation Before Entering God’s Presence…

MOSES prepared himself carefully…before he left the people, he repeated God’s instructions to the people who were all too ready to agree and obey.

But WE are NOT sustained, held up by PROMISES of obedience we make but by His grace.  That at first glance may seem to be hard to grasp.

MOSES MADE SACRIFICES…

In a different light from the OT, Hebrews 13 in the NT, refers to a SACRIFICE the believers are to offer constantly and at all times:

“Through Him (Jesus), therefore let us

constantly and at all times offer up

to God a SACRIFICE of praise,

which is the fruit of lips that thankfully acknowledge and

confess and glorify His name.”

(Hebrews 13:15 AMP)

MOSES made sacrifices because…you and I should make sacrifices because… you don’t approach a holy God without acknowledging His holiness and our sinfulness–FLESH.

Exodus 24:4-8:  The 12 Pillars and the Sprinkled Blood

[4] Moses wrote all the words of the Lord.  He rose up early in the morning and built an altar at the foot of the mountain and set up twelve pillars representing Israel’s twelve tribes.

[8]  And Moses took the blood and sprinkled it on the people, and said,  Behold the blood of the covenant which the Lord has made with you in accordance with all these words.

Our PRAYER should begin before every Sunday AM, “Lord, on this Sunday’s worship and praise, bring to my mind anything that stands between me and You so that I can confess it with my lips to You–acknowledge the forgiveness You have given me through the blood sacrifice of the Cross.”  

And YES, there is still plenty of time for fellowship AFTER…the morning services.

APPROACHING CLOSER TO GOD ON THE MOUNTAIN–

As the people approached closer, they see Him without being zapped out of existence.

–  The people remained at a distance.

–  Moses, Joshua, Nadab, Abihu, Aaron and 70 elders (Exodus 24:9-10) went further up the mountain.

–  The Moses and Joshua went up even further!

–  Then only Moses went into the cloud of God’s presence!!

GOD invites us to draw near to Him right now! As close as you choose to go.

God won’t direct your steps, your path to glory, unless you get up and start moving.

“Come close to God and He will come close to you. [Recognize that you are]  sinners, get your soiled hands clean; [realize that you have been disloyal] wavering individuals with divided interests, and purify your hearts [of your spiritual adultery].    [As you draw near to God] be deeply penitent and grieve, even weep [over disloyalty].  Let your laughter be turned to grief and your mirth to dejection and heartfelt shame [for your sins].    Humble yourselves [feeling very insignificant] in the presence of the Lord, and He will exalt you [He will lift you up and make your lives significant]”  (James 4:8-10 AMP).

The Time is Now to Change If We Are to See His Glory…

“It doesn’t matter where you are, you are nowhere compared to where you can go.”  ~ Bob Proctor

“Show me Your Glory” (Exodus 33:18).

We’ve all witnessed someone going forward in church, kneeling and praying for a CHANGE of direction; really feeling like ones had touched God in a moment of praise.  Only to get up and go right back into the same sinful lifestyle they had been praying about.  They had not been CHANGED.

When Moses was granted his request to see GOD’S GLORY and the change that took place, God shielded him from the strongest part–HIS GLORY, HIS MANIFEST PRESENCE:

Cleft in the ROCK
Cleft in the ROCK

“And while My glory passes by, I will put you in a cleft of the rock and cover you with My hand until I have passed by.  Then I will take away My hand and you shall see My back; but My face shall not be seen”  (Exodus 33:22-23).

By putting His hand in front of the place Moses stood, all he saw was the afterglow of His glory and change took place.

GOD tells His church the same as He spoke to Moses:  “You shall stand upon the rock”  (33:21).  

“…and the Rock was Christ”  (1 Corinthians 10:4 (b).)

MOSES was so changed to the point that his face had such a GLOW he had to wear a Veil (Ex. 34:29).

“Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when He appears, we shall be like Him as He is”  (1 John 3:2 NIV).

The AMPLIFIED BIBLE says it this way: “when He comes and is manifested…”  We will see His GLORY! 

So How Close to God Would You Like to Get?

If we are wanting the CHANGE to take place in our lives, we’re going to have to go beyond just being in His presence.

“THE MOUNT OF TRANSFIGURATION” –  (Matthew 17:2; Mark 9:2):

We’ve found in looking at the OT, a CLOUD that was the visible token of God’s presence; He came down upon Mt. Sinai in a thick cloud; But we are now come, not to the MOUNT covered with thick blackness and darkness, but to the MOUNT covered with a bright cloud (Matthew 17:5).

Both the OT and the NT had tokens of God’s presence; but that was a DISPENSATION of darkness, and terror, and bondage of the Old Testament.  This CLOUD was intended to break the force of that great light (GLORY) that would have overcome the disciples, and have been intolerable; It was like the VEIL which Moses put upon his face when it shone

There came a VOICE out of the cloud…

This was the VOICE of God, who now, as of old, spake in the cloudy pillar (Psalm 99:7; Matthew 17:5).

There was no thunder, or lightning, or voice of a trumpet, as there was when the Law was given to Moses, but only a VOICE–a still small voice.  

Not ushered in with a strong wind, or an earthquake, or fire, as when God spake to Elijah.  Moses then and Elijah were witnesses that in these LAST DAYS…God will speak to us by His Son in a different way.  This VOICE came from the SPLENDID, EXCELLENT, MAJESTIC GLORY:

“For when He (Jesus) was invested with honor and glory from God the Father and a voice was borne to Him by the [splendid] Majestic Glory [in the bright cloud that overshadowed Him, saying],  This is My beloved Son in Whom I am well pleased and delight”  (2 Peter 1:17 AMP).

Although Jehovah showed Himself to Moses in some peculiar form of manifestation, He never appeared in His own essential GLORY, but only in such a form human weakness could stand (2 Corinthians 3:16).

Nevertheless when one turns to the Lord, the VEIL is taken away:

“And all of us, as with unveiled face, [because we] continued to behold [in the Word of God] as in a mirror the GORY of the Lord, are constantly being transfigured into His very own image in ever increasing splendor and from one degree of glory to another; [for the comes] from the Lord [Who is] the Spirit”             (2 Corinthians 3:18 AMP).  *[Note: I capitalized the word GLORY for emphasis.]

So if you are wanting a change to take place in your life–a real presence of Christ and not a pretend presence, it’s evident that you (we) are going to have to go beyond just being in His presence at the foot of the mountain.

A DESIRE that Begins at the Foot of the Mountain

With a desire to prepare, and to know, when you ask to enter God’s GLORY, you will reflect on Moses’ experience on top of the mountain:

“And when the LORD saw that he (Moses) turned aside to see, God called to him out of the midst of the bush and said, Moses, Moses!  And he said, Here am I”  (Exodus 3:4).

Is this your answer on during the  Christmas Season and beyond?  “Here am I.”

AND God said,

“Do not come near; put your shoes off your feet, for the place on which you stand is holy ground”  (verse 5).

ASKING YOURSELF THE QUESTIONS:  “Here I am Lord. What’s Next?”

“Am I tired of stale bread crumbs on the church floor as I enter into worship and praise on Sunday mornings?” 

“Am I content, comfortable, satisfied at the base of the mountain, or do I want to prepare myself for the climb to the top?”


Credits:

Bible Translations:  New Living Translation (NLT); The AMPLIFIED Bible (AMP).

Photos:  Photo Pin

There’s Another Day Beyond This One–and It’s A GIFT!

The GIFT is already here!
The GIFT is already here!

During the Holiday Season, so many people like to emphasize the GIVING experience.  We even quote Scripture to punctuate our giving experience:  “For God so greatly loved and clearly prized the world that He [even] gave up His only begotten (unique) Son…” ~ John 3:16.

But what I want to discuss in this particular blog-Post is,  how we can we thoroughly partake in what God has already given?

The GIFT — God gave to us all and now… we need to reach out and receive.  We’ll never know what’s on the inside unless we RECEIVE!

Scriptural Text:

EXODUS 15:22-27 AMPLIFIED BIBLE:

[22] Then Moses led Israel on-ward from the Red Sea and they went into the Wilderness of Shur; they went three days [thirty-three miles] in the wilderness and found no water.

[23] When they came to Marah, they could not drink its waters for they were bitter; therefore it was named Marah

Oasis of Marah (Bitter Waters)
Oasis of Marah (Bitter Waters)

[bitterness].

[24] The people murmured against Moses, saying,  What shall we drink?

[25] And he cried to the Lord, and the Lord showed him a tree which he cast into the waters, and the waters were made sweet.  There [the Lord] made for them a statute and an ordinance,  and there He proved them,

[26] Saying,  If you will diligently hearken to the voice of the Lord your God and will do what is right in His sight, and will listen to and obey  His commandments  and keep all His statutes, I will put none of the diseases upon you which I brought upon the Egyptians, for I am the Lord Who heals you.

[27] And they came to Elim, where there were twelve springs of water and seventy palm trees; and they encamped there by the waters.

HOW GOD REVEALS TO US HIS CHARACTER, HIS NATURE IN THE BIBLE:

GOD has revealed Himself in various ways in the Bible for us to better understand His character–who He is by indication in His name.  [See Footnote [i]- source for the following names listed.]

*  ELOHIM=Creator, Preserver, Keeper of His Covenant.

*  EL-SHADDAI=Almighty God, Our all-sufficient supply, Restorer of power, gifts, and the One Who makes us fruitful.

*  ADONAI=Lord–Owner of all!

*  JEHOVAH=LORD–holiness (Truth Revealer), righteousness, redemption.

After being married to my dear wife for over fifty years, our relationship has grown even closer; utilizing the names we have for each other: honey (sweetness), sweetheart (character; heart), babe (physical attraction), and other descriptive qualities that will go unmentioned.  The names we’ve chosen shows the endearing relationship we have for one another.

GOD REVEALS HIS NATURE IN SCRIPTURE:  (*Footnotes [i].)

The names of God which He progressively reveals Himself in the OT is a response to His people’s progressing needs:

*  ABRAHAM in his test to offer up his son Isaac on Mt. Moriah.  JEHOVAH- JIREH=The God Who provides.  God provided a SACRIFICE.  And there, caught in the thorny bushes, a ram.  The GIFT had been provided and Abraham gladly received.

*  The PASSOVER LAMB, who would be slain so God’s people could go free (from Egypt) and Christians could be set free from the power of sin through “the Lamb of God Who takes away the sin of the world”.

And from this experience came the expression “on the mount of the Lord it will be provided.”  And so it was, 2000 years later (Now 2000 years ago!) – on Mt. Moriah, which is, geographically CALVARY–“That’s where Jerusalem was built.”

These stories are all lessons to us.  In fact…the whole of the OT is!

“Now these things befell them by the way of a figure [as an example and warning to us]; they were written to admonish and fit us for right action by good instruction, we in whose days the ages have reached their climax (their consummation and concluding period)”  (1 Corinthians 10:11 amp).

I hope this study will speak to you as you’re reading and meditating on the application in your life.

JEHOVAH-ROPHE:

GOD REVEALS something else of His nature.

*  That He is the HEALER.

*  The LORD who HEALS.

In the verses above from Exodus 15, basically, God’s people have made it out of Egypt through the Red Sea.  After 400 years captive in slavery, and God providing the way of escape, they came out with Excitement, Expectation, and Energy!  This carries them on day one into the desert (they don’t notice the heat or thirst at this point).

Then comes day TWO…and their throats become progressively dry and parched.

Then comes day THREE…and they really start to moan!  I wonder in the story who or what was bitter here!

Then they see the water!  Yippee!!  An Oasis!!!  “God, you’ve done it!”  UP! – But the water taste foul.  DOWN – Undrinkable, Bitter, Frustration, Disillusionment.  They get more bitter from the experience and decide to take it out on Moses.  He then takes it out on God.

“Bitterness”

Bitterness described in the Bible as a spiritual poison (Hebrews 12:15).  It can be tricky to recognize because it’s NOT a symptom that’s visible on the surface like anger.  Bitterness is an underlying problem that often goes unnoticed in the believing Christian.  It doesn’t manifest on the outside and yet it sours the inside spirit of man.

“BITTERNESS” IN THE DESERT:   

It becomes a test–

Not of them to God (as they think: “will He come up with the goods?”), but God to them.  He has a lesson for them to learn.

“GET…(receive)THAT TREE…THE WOOD”

‘Throw the tree in the water and you’ll be okay.’  In fact: follow the LORD’s commands and statutes (decrees) and NONE of these diseases will hit you, for I AM JEHOVAH-ROPHE:

ROPHE meaning in the Hebrew language:  “Restore to heal, to make healthful – in body, mind and spirit”  (*See Footnote [ii].).

HEALING is in the Name and Nature of God–

Psalm 103:1-3:

“BLESS  (AFFECTIONATELY, gratefully praise)  the Lord, O my soul; and all that is [deepest] within me, bless His holy name!  [2] Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not [one of] ALL His benefits–  [3] Who forgives [every one of] ALL your iniquities,  Who heals [each one of] ALL your diseases,…”

So if this is so in God’s nature, why is there so much sickness?

It boils down to why God’s first name was revealed–SIN.  I’m not saying specifically because I, you, have sinned (though that may be the case and the cause)  Cf John 9.  BUT because of the PROBLEM of sin in the world.

–  The world going away from Him.

–  Us going away.

–  The pollution of power of sin.

That is the real problem!

THE SOLUTION TO SICKNESS:

It’s the hand out–

1.  For reaching out and taking and receiving…

2.  It’s the wood nearby…

3.  The tree.

The PROBLEM just might be “Bitterness”–

–  Of heart, of life.

–  Within you.  Your name is “Marah.”

–  Maybe a death in your family that goes unexplained.

–  Perhaps what you’ve done to others…or what they’ve done to you.

–  And there’s a need for forgiveness–one way or another.

–  Your experiences, memories?

–  Who did what?  Who hurt you?  It’s all tied together.

–  And so is the SICKNESS:  spirit, sin and unforgiveness affects the mind, which affects the body.

And the ANSWER is there to RECEIVE–THE WOOD–THE CROSS.

THE "WOOD" of the CROSS
THE “WOOD” of the CROSS

FORGIVENESS from God through repentance releases God’s hand in your life.  What WATER has flown through your life?

“You have made me drink bitter waters!”

The ANSWER IS JESUS:

JESUS answering the Samaritan woman at the well when He was asked, “You being a Jew, how is it that you are asking me for a drink of water?”  Jesus answered her,

“If you had only known and had recognized God’s gift

and Who this is that is saying to you, Give Me a drink,

you would have asked Him [instead] and He would have given you

living water.”

~ John 4:10~

If you find yourself with a dry, parched throat and DOUBT of the OUTCOME…

5583389970_d676214c49

John 4:11-12:  “She said to Him, Sir,  You have nothing to draw with [no drawing bucket] and the well is deep; how then can You provide living water? [Where do You get Your living water?]  [12] Are You greater than and superior to our ancestor Jacob, who gave us this well and who used to drink from it himself, and his sons and his cattle also?”

John 4:13-15:  “JESUS answered her,  All who drink of THIS water will be thirsty again.  [14] But whoever takes a drink of THE water that I will give him shall never, no never, be thirsty any more.  But the water that I will give him shall become a spring of water welling up (flowing, bubbling)  [continually]  within him unto (into, for) eternal life.  [15] The woman said to Him, Sir, give me THIS water, so that I may never get thirsty nor have to come  [continually all the way]  here to draw.”

John 7:37-39:  “Now on the final and most important day of the Feast, Jesus stood, and cried in a loud voice, If any man is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink!  [38] He who believes in Me [who cleaves to and trusts in and relies on Me] as the Scripture has said,  From his innermost being shall flow  [continuously] springs and rivers of living water.  [39] But He was speaking here of the Spirit, Whom those who believed cr(trusted, had faith) in Him were afterward to receive.  For the [Holy] Spirit had not yet been given, because Jesus was not yet glorified (raised to honor).”

Revelation 22:1-3:  “THEN HE showed me the river whose waters give life, sparkling like crystal, flowing out from the throne of God and of the Lamb  [2] Through the middle of the broadway of the city; also, on either side of the river was the tree of life with its twelve varieties of fruit, yielding each month its fresh crop; and the leaves of the tree were for the healing and the restoration of the nations.  [3] There shall no longer exist anything that is accursed (detestable, foul, offensive, impure, hateful, or horrible).  But the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it, and His servants shall worship Him [pay divine honors to Him and do Him holy service].”

Revelation 22:17:  “The [Holy] Spirit and the bride (the church, the true Christians) say, Come!  And let who is listening say, Come!  And let everyone come who is thirsty [who is painfully conscious of his need of those things by which the soul is refreshed, supported, and strengthened]; and whoever [earnestly] desires it, let him come,  take,  appropriate,  and drink the water of Life without cost.”   

IN GOD’S WISDOM, THERE’S A PRIORITY LIST TO FOLLOW:

#1.  Getting right with God comes first (and getting right with others).

#2.  The healing of the Spirit.

#3.  Then the healing of the mind.  PEACE!  How often is that mentioned in the Bible?  365 times!

#4.  The body.  Because that does matter to God.  The Israelites in the desert needed a DRINK, here!  And, God knew that.

#5.  Look at all the physical healings of Jesus.

All Christians get HEALED 100%–

Healing of the spirit comes first and if that’s true, and Scripture backs up the percentage, there should be no more fear.

It’s when we get taken to be with the LORD.  The Lord’s GIFT has already been given.  It is time to reach out and RECETHE ACTION COMES WITH THE GIFT:

Every man and woman must have their MARAH moment to drink; sour or bitter tastes in the mouth.  Life is full of disappointments, trouble, stress, losses, conflict, sickness…

But GOD had a remedy for Moses.  God told Moses to get that tree over there, toss it in the water and the act of God created SWEETNESS out of BITTERNESS.

BUT THERE’S MORE!

The Elims of Life–“And they came to Elim…” (VERSE 27)

ELIM WILL ALWAYS FOLLOW MARAH
ELIM WILL ALWAYS FOLLOW MARAH

What every one of us must realize, just as there are the “MARAH’S”, the bitterness of life, there are also the “ELIMS” of life.  “Elim” will always follow a “Marah”.

“…where there were twelve springs of water and seventy palm trees; and they encamped there by the waters”  (Exodus 15:27).

The LIVING WATER is there for you to partake of.  Now you need to go and RECEIVE the sweetness and encamp there in the midst of your doubt.

LIVING WATER
LIVING WATER

 


FOOTNOTES:

[i]  Names of God/Bible.org – https://bible.org/article/names-god/

[ii] Expository Dictionary Of Bible Words.

PHOTO CREDITS:

– Photo Pin.

Unknown (Wood Cross)

– Lessing Images.com

– The Exodus Route: Marah/Elim @ www. bible.ca/archeology/bible-archeology/-exodus-route-marah

CREDITS:

AMPLIFIED BIBLE translation.

VINE’S COMPLETE EXPOSITORY DICTIONARY OF OLD AND NEW TESTAMENT WORDS

Young’s Bile Dictionary by G. Douglas Young, PhD

 

 

 

“Feeling Stuck In Life With Just Watching the Sheep?”

"Do I really have to...?"
“Do I really have to…?”

The Phoebe Knapp Story–[*See Footnote [i]]

In 1873, those who probably knew Phoebe Knapp as nothing but an organist at her Methodist church in NYC.  She was a wealthy enough woman–her parents had left a large estate.  But much of it was tied up in her husband’s company National Union Life and Limb.

Nowadays, that company takes its name from the Metropolitan District of New York City, which eventually became successful and know as MetLife.

“Phoebe who?”

Phoebe Knapp
Phoebe Knapp

But in 1873, Phoebe wasn’t all that special.  During The Great Financial Panic of 1873, a similar version to The Great Depression, businesses were failing and the insurance market was in jeopardy.  But Phoebe and Joe felt called to providing insurance.  They stuck it out, and with God’s providence were able to continue their business.

Then in the 1880’s, comparative wealth rolled around.  With hard work and being in the right place at the right time, defining most businesses, Joe and Phoebe Knapp were able to gain wealth and fame running an American icon like MetLife.

But the Knapp’s most enduring legacy came in the depths.  In 1873, Phoebe was just an organist at church, she and her husband were best known for their piety.  But the KEY to who they were was their TRUST IN GOD and letting Him work through them through their circumstances.

THE SIMILARITY TO MOSES’ LIFE:  “I KNOW I’M A PRINCE, BUT I FEEL STUCK JUST WATCHING THE SHEEP!”

[Scripture Verses: Exodus 3:1-16; 4:1; 10-13]

God Had A Plan for Moses – Exodus 3…

When MOSES set out to accomplish righteous ends using his own methods, things didn’t go well.  When he set out to accomplish righteous ends using GOD’S METHODS…things worked out better.  But still, Moses was stuck out in the desert.  Casually reading the story in Exodus, for all practical purposes, MOSES was a nobody.

He was a man who was prince of Egypt, and now he finds himself watching sheep (Exodus 3:1).  Talk about a waste of potential. But GOD had a plan for Moses.  If God wants to do something, it’s going to happen!

God wanted Moses to be…THE MAN…the man who gave Israel His deliverance.  So God did something He doesn’t often do.  He called Moses directly (Exodus 3:2-4).

2818620403_263a50e67a

We all have some image in our minds of the BURNING BUSH.  It’s a famous encounter when God calls man, asks man to join Him in what He’s doing or about to do.  God still calls us today, even if He is less dramatic about it.  I’m not saying we can’t have a “burning bush” moment is life, because I’ve listened to others testimony.

Our sometimes responses…

I love looking at the JOY in peoples faces serving in ministry of the church by responding to God’s call.  For whatever reason, when God calls, their response is more like that of MOSES–Here I am, Send him/her.  

I have often heard the statistic “20% of the people in church do 80% of the work.”  Why is that the case?  One answer, one that I’ve found to be true in my own personal Christian walk is illustrated by the QUESTIONS of Moses, and more importantly, the ANSWERS God gives.

When God Calls Us to Join Him…

It’s pretty natural to have questions.  After all, He’s God, and well…we’re not.  How we answer these questions determines what part we’ll have in His work.

The Call from a Burning Bush – (Exodus 3:2-11)

6284178236_e6cacb55d2Notice in these verses Moses has a very natural reaction to God’s call in his life.

Here is GOD ALMIGHTY, calling out of a “burning bush, telling MOSES you’re to act on My behalf as Israel’s Deliverer.  That’s no easy task.  Moses’ track record already shown he can take God’s call and mess it up.  So what’s Moses’ first question?

“Who am I, that I should go to Pharaoh and bring the Israelites out of Egypt?”  (Exodus 3:11 AMP).

In this age where SELF-ESTEEM is so important to teach our children, God has an interesting answer:

“I shall surely be with you…”  (3:12)

Notice God doesn’t say, “Oh, Moses you’ve been trained” or “Moses you’re good man.”  No, God says, ‘Who you are isn’t important.’

“IT JUST DOESN’T MATTER” 

Lacking in self-confidence during my teenage years, as most teenagers do, especially in the case of asking girls out on a date, I tried to build up my courage while in front of the bathroom mirror.  While getting ready for the big evening, I began singing loudly a lyric from Peggy Lee’s hit…“Mr. Wonderful” [ii].  However, I modified the words “Mr. Wonderful, that’s you'” to “Mr. Wonderful, that’s ME.”  Although it didn’t work too often, I enjoyed irritating my 7 year younger brother as he walked down the hallway.

Acting without CONFIDENCE…

I know people like that–venturing out into life with little or no confidence in what they have been asked to accomplish.  And yet, what is God’s answer?

It doesn’t matter who you are–what experience you have, or lack thereof–I’ve called you, and there’s only one thing you need to know–I’m with you.

MOSES’ SECOND QUESTION–

So, if it doesn’t matter who Moses is, then Moses asks the next logical question “OK, God, then who are you?”

The way Moses asks this question, I get the impression Moses is perhaps thinking back in time why he fled Egypt in the first place.  Notice his words in Exodus 3:13:

“When I come to the Israelites and say to them,  The God of your father has sent me to you, and they say to me,  What is His name?  What shall I say to them?”

In Exodus 2:14, Moses remembering what the Hebrew said when trying to intervene in their fight…”Who made you prince and a ruler over us?”  “What gives you the right?”

You see, people DON’T like being in charge and still are stuck on the first question of “Who am I?”  They’re the type who wants God’s ‘help’, yet not His leadership.

“GOD IS GOD, AND WE’RE NOT!”

That’s why Moses gets God’s name.  God isn’t the God of some particular thing, He’s just God!

“And God said to Moses,  I AM WHO I AM and I WILL BE WHAT I WILL BE; and He said,  You shall say to the Israelites: I AM has sent me to you!”  (Exodus 3:14).

THAT statement alone is MYSTERY in and of itself–nothing can be added to it.  When people ask,  “Who does God think he is anyway?”  The answer is simply,  “I AM.”

God is allowed to be in charge, because He is God.  He was GOD yesterday, He is GOD today.  And when we’re dead and gone, GOD will still be GOD.  He is always a present tense God.

Before Abraham was,  I AM.  When He is ALPHA and OMEGA,  I AM.

Even when He hides His face, look up!  God is not dead,  “I AM”.

You see, it doesn’t matter who WE ARE.  GOD “IS”.

It’s NOT who I am, it’s who He is.

THE THIRD QUESTION OF MOSES–The TRUTH isn’t always easy to accept:

“But behold, they will not believe me or listen to and obey my voice; for they will say, The Lord has not appeared to you”  (4:1).

So Moses asks another question and…he raises it as an objection–he says…

‘Okay, I realize it’s not about me, I realize it’s who you are Lord.  But what if the people don’t believe me?’

That’s reasonable response.  I’ve imagined the same question as I sit down to write a new blog: ‘What if the people don’t believe what I’m writing– what truths am I trying to get across in my words?’

People in general like PROOF.  People want PROOF.

Our PROOF today comes from the written Word, the Bible–

For over 2000 years, eyewitness testimony and acts of God are right in front of us, so we can show consistency in what God has called us too, with what He has done in the past.

But in Moses’ time, most of them probably wouldn’t even been able to read.  So GOD talks to them in their terms.

God uses MIRACLES in His calling…

God gives Moses a MIRACLE to show that he, Moses, has been called by God.

Reenactment of MOSES holding his STAFF
Reenactment of MOSES holding his STAFF

I wondered in reading here, why doesn’t God just use a miracle and miraculously move all His people out of Egypt… without Moses?  And, why doesn’t He do the same for us today?  It would be so much easier!  But that’s not God’s style.

Following the Staff of Moses:

God gives Moses a staff–a sign to follow, but leaves the following of to the people.  You’d think that would be enough.  But Moses finally runs out of excuses.  He just lays his lack of confidence on the line:

“And Moses said to the Lord, O Lord, I am not eloquent or a man of words, neither before nor since You have spoken to Your servant; for I am slow of speech and have a heavy and awkward tongue”  (4:10).

To paraphrase Moses’ words here…‘LORD, PLEASE SEND SOMEONE ELSE.  I don’t want to do it!’  I know You made me; I know You care for me.  Moses is saying, “That’s just not who I want to be.”  

And so God says, “Okay.  Have it your way, I’ll give you Aaron.”   

Aaron isn’t always a helper–think about the Golden Calf, the grumbling and complaining.  But God says to Moses “You insist on doing it your way?  I can use that too.”  

It might not be PLAN “A”, but I’m God.  I can work with it.

GOD CARES FOR HIS PEOPLE…

But God doesn’t care about their own “self-images.”  He simply wants us to realize, it doesn’t matter who we are.  God is with us.

THE MIRACLES, the GREAT BIBLE STORIES that inspire us, that’s not what we aspire to; there is only a finite number of miracles, only so many stories to read.  Ultimately, GOD allows us to join Him.  He pleads with us to join Him.  But if we are to be God’s people, eventually we have to put up or shut up.  If we’re going to do God’s work here on earth, we must do it in HIS POWER.

THE FANNY CROSBY–[*See Footnote [iii] on the Fanny Crosby story.]

Doing God’s work in His power…

I’m sure you’ve heard this godly woman’s story before and doing the work of God in her own circumstances.

When Fanny was only six weeks old, she came down with a cold that affected her eyes.  Since the family doctor was out, a man who stood in his place; though he knew what to do, he ended up blinding the little girl instead.

Fanny  Crosby
Fanny Crosby

But God hadn’t given up on Fanny Crosby.  She was a smart girl and by the age of 10, she had memorized the entire New Testament.  When she was in her 20 s, she became a teacher and a well-known poet.

She became good friends with another school teacher at the time, a man by the name of Grover Cleveland who later became the President of the United States.  On several occasion in his Presidency, he would call Fanny to write a poem for a special occasion.

She truly was something of a wonder to behold, but even she was missing something.  When she was 30, a cholera epidemic swept through her town.  As she watched love ones die all around her, she realized even with all her great accomplishments, she only lived because of the POWER and the GRACE of God.

God had given her an amazing ability to put beautiful words down to pen based on the truths of God’s Word.  If you’ve ever sung ‘To God Be the Glory,’ you’ve sung one of her songs.  Or, ‘Jesus is Tenderly Calling’ and nearly 8000 other hymns came of this godly blind woman.

And so, in 1873, Fanny J. Crosby was living in God’s POWER, and doing His work.  At her church, the organist wanted a part in that too.  Her name was Phoebe Knapp.

Phoebe eventually could have been successful being the wife of an insurance tycoon.  But that’s not what Phoebe Knapp is known for today.  She composed a tune that she believed, had faith enough, to be of God and she wasn’t a POET.

Going to the home of her fellow church-member and friend, Phoebe asked Fanny Crosby, what does this song say to you? Phoebe played the notes on the keyboard and Fanny spoke these words:  “Blessed Assurance, Jesus is Mine.”

Having a lack of confidence in your ‘self-worth’ right now?

So it doesn’t matter if you are a farmer, a wealthy woman, a blind poet or even a “sheep watcher.”  It doesn’t matter who you are, but only who He is and what He will do through you.

You can have that BLESSED ASSURANCE, but only if JESUS is yours.  Or more importantly, that you are His.

I love the way the Amplified Bible’s reading of a verse in Philippians 4:

“I have strength for all things in Christ Who empowers me [I am ready for anything and equal to anything through Him Who infuses inner strength into me; I am self-sufficient in Christ’s sufficiency]”  ~ verse 13.

blessed-assurance_t

 SO WHAT IS YOUR STORY?

WHAT IS YOUR SONG?


FOOTNOTES:

[i] Phoebe Knapp story @ christianheritagefellowship.com/phoebe-palmer-knapp.

[ii] Title, music and Lyrics from Peggy Lee’s “Mr. Wonderful, That’s You.”

[iii] Fanny Crosby story from christianitytoday.com/Fanny Crosby/Christian History. 

PHOTO CREDITS:

Phoebe Palmer Knapp – Courtesy of the Christian Heritage Fellowship.

Fanny Crosby – Courtesy of Wikipedia/Fanny Crosby-religion.

“Burning Bush”; A man holding his “STAFF” ; and a child watching sheep- by Photo Pin.

BLESSED ASSURANCE – Courtesy of Google Images for Blessed Assurance.

BIBLE TRANSLATION USED FOR THIS POST:

Amplified Bible Translation – Published by Zondervan – http://www.zondervan.com