Spiritual Understandings

Mark 11:15-17

And they come to Jerusalem: and Jesus went into the temple, and began to cast out them that sold and bought in the temple, and overthrew the tables of the moneychangers, and the seats of them that sold doves;

And would not suffer that any man should carry any vessel through the temple.

And he taught, saying unto them, Is it not written, My house shall be called of all nations the house of prayer? but ye have made it a den of thieves.

And they come to Jerusalem: Isa.56:7> Even them will I bring to my holy mountain, and make them joyful in my house of prayer: their burnt offerings and their sacrifices shall be accepted upon mine altar; for mine house shall be called an house of prayer for all people.

My house shall be called of all nations the house of prayer:

Matt.21:13> And said unto them, It is written, My house shall be called the house of prayer; but ye have made it a den of thieves.

Mark 11:17> And he taught, saying unto them, Is it not written, My house shall be called of all nations the house of prayer? but ye have made it a den of thieves.

ye have made it a den of thieves:

John 2:24> But Jesus did not commit himself unto them, because he knew all men,

(NIV) But Jesus would not entrust himself to them, for he knew all men. (for he knew what was in man V.25) Money changers and merchants did big business during Passover. Those who came from foreign countries had to have their money changed into temple currency because this was the only money accepted for the temple tas and for the purchase of sacrificial animals . Often the inflated exchange rate enriched the money changers, and the exorbitant prices of animals made the merchants wealthy…. Their stalls were set up in the temple’s court of the Gentiles, frustrating the intentions of non-Jews who had come to worship God (Isaiah 56:6,7) Jesus became angry because God’s house of worship had become  a place of extortion and a barrier to Gentiles who wanted to worship. If the people of that time could see what I see today.

 

 

 

Finding Faith through Bible Study, Trusting In the LORD

Read and meditate on Psalms 37

And the LORD shall help them, and deliver them: he shall deliver them from the wicked, and save them, because they trust in him.  (1Chr.5:20 and Dan.3:17)

And they were helped against them, and the Hagarites were delivered into their hand, and all that were with them: for they cried to God in the battle, and he was intreated of them; because they put their trust in him. If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king.

(PS.27:1-2)    The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? the LORD is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?  When the wicked, even mine enemies and my foes, came upon me to eat up my flesh, they stumbled and fell.

FOCUS POINT: We should be faithful to serve God whether he intervenes on our behalf or not. Our eternal reward is worth any suffering we may have to endure first. Amen, glory to God through Christ Jesus.

 

Day By Day by Grace, Faith Base

Joseph Also Viewing the Future, by Faith

 (Hebrews 11:22)

By faith Joseph, when his end was near, spoke about the exodus of  Israelites from Egypt and gave instructions about his bones.

( Gen.50:24,25 ) And Joseph said unto his brethren, I die: and God will surely visit you, and bring you out of this land unto the land which he sware to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob And Joseph took an oath of the children of Israel, saying, God will surely visit you, and ye shall carry up my bones from hence.

Joseph, one of Jacob’s sons, was sold into slavery by his jealous brothers. Eventually, Joseph was sold again, this time to an official of the Pharaoh of Egypt. Because of Joseph’s faithfulness to God, however he was given a top-ranking position in Egypt. Although Joseph could have used that position to build a personal empire,he remembered God’s promise to Abraham. after he had been reconciled to his brothers, Joseph brought his family to be near him and requested that his bones be taken to the promised land when the  Jews eventually left Egypt . Faith means trusting in God and doing what he wants, regardless of the circumstances or consequences.

Joseph’s journey to leadership in Egypt was marked by alternating battles and blessings. His brothers had betrayed him and sold him into slavery. “Midianite traders passed by; so the brothers…sold him to the Ishmaelites for twenty shekels of silver. And they took Joseph to Egypt” (Genesis 37:28). Soon, Joseph found blessing under the care of Potiphar, an Egyptian captain who purchased him. “And his master saw that the LORD was with him and that the LORD made all he did to prosper in his hand. So Joseph found favor in his sight, and served him. Then he made him overseer of his house, and all that he had he put in his hand” (Genesis 39:3-4).

Yet, another battle arose. Joseph was imprisoned when Potiphar’s wife lied. She resented Joseph’s refusal of her sensual advances. “‘He came in to me to lie with me, and I cried out with a loud voice’…Then Joseph’s master took him and put him into the prison” (Genesis 39:14, 20). But, more blessing came as the Lord granted Joseph favor with the prison keeper. “And the keeper of the prison committed to Joseph’s hand all the prisoners…because the LORD was with him; and whatever he did, the LORD made it prosper” (Genesis 39:22-23). Another spiritual battle ensued, as one of Pharoah’s servants forgot Joseph’s kindness to him in prison. “The chief butler did not remember Joseph, but forgot him. Then it came to pass, at the end of two full years, that Pharaoh had a dream” (Genesis 40:23-41:1). Joseph’s interpretation of Pharoah’s dream would bring Joseph to his position of authority in Egypt. “You shall be over my house, and all my people shall be ruled according to your word; only in regard to the throne will I be greater than you” (Genesis 41:40).

Faith in the Lord certainly sustained Joseph and brought him to God’s desired place of service and opportunity. Yet, our present verse reveals that Joseph’s basic interest was not his own blessing and advancement. Joseph had a heart for the plans and purposes of God. As he viewed the future, he was convinced that the Lord would some day bring His people back to the land of promise. His request to have his bones buried in the land of promise was an expression of his faith in God’s promises. “God will surely visit you, and you shall carry up my bones from here” (Genesis 50:25).

Lord God of eternity, as I alternate between the battles and blessings of life, help me to view the future by faith. Remind me that Your everlasting purposes can guide and shape my temporal circumstances, in Jesus’ name, Amen.

 

Finding Faith through Bible Study

1Cor.3:10 thru 23

10-According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon. Rom.15:20>Yea, so have I strived to preach the gospel, not where Christ was named, lest I should build upon another man’s foundation: 1Pet.4:11>If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.

11-For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Isa.28:16> Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD, Behold, I lay in Zion for a foundation a stone, a tried stone, a precious corner stone, a sure foundation: he that believeth shall not make haste.  Matt.16:18>And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

12-Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble;

13-Every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it,  because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is.  1Pet.1:7>That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:

14-If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward.

15-If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.  Jude 23>And others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh.

16-Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?

17-If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.

 Heb.3:1>Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus;

18-Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you seemeth to be wise in this world, let him become a fool, that he may be wise.

19-For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, He taketh the wise in their own craftiness.  Job 5:13>He taketh the wise in their own craftiness: and the counsel of the froward is carried headlong.

20-And again, The Lord knoweth the thoughts of the wise, that they are vain.  Psa.94:11>The LORD knoweth the thoughts of man, that they are vanity.

21-Therefore let no man glory in men. For all things are yours;  2Cor.4:5>For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus’ sake.

22-Whether Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas, or the world, or life, or death, or things present, or things to come; all are yours;

23-And ye are Christ’s; and Christ is  God’s.  John 17:9-10>I pray for them: I pray not for the world, but for them which thou hast given me; for they are thine.  Rom.14:8>For whether we live, we live unto the Lord; and whether we die, we die unto the Lord: whether we live therefore, or die, we are the Lord’s. Gal.3:29> And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.   1Cor.8:6> But to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we by him.  1Cor.11:3>But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God. Heb.1:3>Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high;

 

Day By Day by Grace, Spiritual Understandings

More on Abraham’s Patient, Heavenly Pilgrimage, by Faith

(Hebrews 11:15-16)

And truly if they had called to mind that country from which they had come out, they would have had opportunity to return. But now they desire a better, that is, a heavenly country. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for He has prepared a city for them.

God is not ashamed to be called their God,

Ex.3:6,15> Moreover he said, I am the God of thy father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. And Moses hid his face; for he was afraid to look upon God. Go, and gather the elders of Israel together, and say unto them, The LORD God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob, appeared unto me, saying, I have surely visited you, and seen that which is done to you in Egypt:

He has prepared a city for them.

Phil.3:20>For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ:

our conversation is in heaven;

(Col.3:1,3) If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.

look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ:

(1Cor.1:7. 1Thess.1:10) So that ye come behind in no gift; waiting for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ: And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.

Abraham (and his family) lived as “strangers and pilgrims on the earth” (Hebrews 11:13). He lived as an obedient sojourner here on earth, trusting God to lead him about as one who was in the world, but not of the world. He also lived as a patient, heavenly pilgrim, trusting God to lead him to the eternal homeland that awaits all who have saving faith in the Lord. We have a similar calling from the Lord. “Beloved, I beg you as sojourners and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul” (1 Peter 2:11).

Abraham understood that spiritual sojourners and heaven-bound pilgrims must stay away from earth-bound cravings that undermine one’s godly quest. “And truly if they had called to mind that country from which they had come out, they would have had opportunity to return.” Abraham and his seed had many tests and trials in their pilgrimage with the Lord. If they had set their attention on the country they forsook, they would have been tempted to return there. The enemy of our souls wants to wage war against us by ensnaring us again in the world that we have forsaken: “in which you once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air” (Ephesians 2:2). Everyone is vulnerable to such attack. Even one of Paul’s early associates in ministry fell prey to this enticement. “Demas has forsaken me, having loved this present world” (2 Timothy 4:10). Thus, the Lord warns us to stay away from any indulgent relationship with the world. “Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him” (1 John 2:15).

Instead, we are to desire the priorities of Abraham and his family. “But now they desire a better, that is, a heavenly country.” Even though the land of promise was in their inheritance some day, they hungered for the realities of heaven above. Such heaven-focused faith is pleasing to our heavenly Father. “Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for He has prepared a city for them.” In this heavenly city (“the city of the living God-Hebrews 12:22), we will dwell forever with our glorious Lord!

Lord God, the only true and living God, I regret those times that the world has drawn my attention away from my heavenly homeland. I cry out to You—please anchor my heart in heaven above, that I might thereby please You in my pilgrimage here on earth below, Amen.

 

 

Daily Promise

Psalm 125:

They that trust in the LORD [shall be] as mount Zion, [which] cannot be removed, [but] abideth for ever.

Reflection
Take courage, O child of the Redeemer, for like Mount Zion, you are immovable in the Lord’s strength! Why? Simply because, as all of Christ’s gathered lambs, you have already come to His heavenly mount (Hebrews 12) and are already citizens of His heavenly city (Philippians 3:20). By faith we have come to such a place and so, by faith we are made immovable! Rejoice in your strength, and so, live as pleasing to the Lord!

Day By Day by Grace

Abraham’s Patient, Heavenly Pilgrimage, by Faith

These all died in faithnot having received the promises, but having seen them afar off were assured of them, embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth. For those who say such things declare plainly that they seek a homeland. (Hebrews 11:13-14)

having seem them afar off, (Gen.49:10    Num.24:17)

The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the gathering of the people be.  I shall see him, but not now: I shall behold him, but not nigh: there shall come a Star out of Jacob, and a Sceptre shall rise out of Israel, and shall smite the corners of Moab, and destroy all the children of Sheth.

they that say such things declare plainly that they seek a country.

(Heb.13:14) For here have we no continuing city, but we seek one to come.

 

Father God, You have fulfilled so many promises for me here on this earth. I praise You and thank You for such loving grace. Still, my heart yearns for that which heaven alone can provide. Thus, I press on as a pilgrim, bound for my homeland above.