Monthly Archives: February 2021

Leviticus 8-11; Psalm 110 and Hebrews 4

Lev. 8: 24 MEV- He brought the sons of Aaron, and Moses put some of the blood on the tips of their right ears, and on the thumbs of their right hands, and on the big toes of their right feet.

My first thought was– what is the significance of the right? The only thing I could think of was the sheep and the goats, where the sheep went to the right (believers), and the goats to the left (unbelievers). Therefore, I am thinking of the right signifying someone who believes in God and is accountable to God. Then the placing of blood on the ear, the thumbs, and the toes was also puzzling to me at first. but then I wondered: What if it mattered to God what God’s people heard? What God’s people touched? and where God’s people went? And to make it more modern: What God’s people wrote or typed to others? If it matters to God, then it should matter to me! God called Aaron and his sons to be set apart and be Holy. I am no different.

Lev. 09:23-24 MEV – Moses and Aaron went into the tent of meeting, and when they came out, they blessed the people, and the glory of the LORD appeared to all the people. A fire came out from before the LORD, and it consumed the burnt offering and the fat that were on the altar. When all the people saw this, they shouted and fell on their faces.

I can only imagine how wonderful to see the glory of the LORD, and also how terrifying to see the fire that came out before the LORD. The bible says they shouted. Can you hear it? I can! But in my head it sounds more like a hallelujah, that turned into a gasp, and then, they fell on their face! I think it was both in awe and in fear. Maybe that is just how GOD wanted it!

BUT, one verse later…….

Lev. 10:1-2 MEV Now Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, each took his censer and put fire in it, and put incense in it, and offered strange fire before the LORD, which He did not command them to do. Then a fire came out from the LORD and devoured them and they died before the LORD.

What were they thinking? Didn’t they just witness the power of God. Verse 24 said all people saw. God has clearly shown He was a GOD of detail and order. And God clearly meant for everything He said to be followed down to the letter of the law. Did not Moses make that clear? But we will never know what they were thinking because that is the last thing they did, and the last thing they will be remembered for. What if. the last thing I did, is what I would be remembered for, would I still do it?

Lev. 10:3b MEV And Aaron held his peace.

How hard this must have been. Yet he knew his sons disobeyed God. There was nothing he could say, only to learn from his son’s mistakes. As a parent, this is a hard lesson to learn.

Lev. 10:10-11 MEV so that you may differentiate between what is holy and common and between what is unclean and clean. And, so you may teach the children of Israel all the statutes that the LORD has spoken to them by the hand of Moses.

Unfortunately, today these lines have become very blurred. Also, my fear of God has been made common, not Holy. I see Him as my friend, my helper, and my provider….and He is all that, but, I have lost sight that, if I cross the lines, at any time, a fire can come out before God and consume me. Maybe not literally, but lots of things could consume me and draw me away from God. God doesn’t want me to be afraid to approach Him, for He wants an active, daily personal relationship with me. But what He does want, is for me to respect and honor His ways. He wants me to have the Holy courage and the Holy boldness to come out from the world and be separate from them. If I am not supposed to do the unclean things of this world to satisfy my needs or wants, then I can trust that God will supply a clean way to meet my needs and wants. If I do it any other way, it makes me blend in with the world. God calls for me to be Holy, because He is Holy!

Psalm 110:3 MEV Your people will follow you in the day of your battle: on the holy mountains at dawn of the morning, the dew of your youth belongs to you.

I realize this chapter is talking about Jesus, leading His people to God. But the same applies to me. Do I realize who my people are? How they watch what I do, and follow me? Will I lead them to the Lord, or will I lead them into the hands of destruction. I must make every effort to lead my people to victory, to lead them in God’s ways of doing things, not the world’s . To lead them to Jesus, so that He can lead them to God.

Hebrews 4: 1 MEV Therefore, since the promise of entering His rest remains, let us fear lest any of you should seem to come short of it.

Since I have believed, I have entered God’s rest. But I still need to fear God and respect His ways. He knows my motives and thoughts and intents. He sees all, yet I can come before Him to obtain mercy and find grace to help in my time of need. The bottom line from today’s readings is that our actions matter to God. It is all decided day by day, choice by choice. Do I choose live clean or unclean? Do I believe Jesus or the world? I saw an acronym for the word faith: Forsaking All, I Take Him! In my opinion, Jesus is worth many times more than anything this world offers. He offers eternal treasures, the world offers temporary pleasures. I choose to be clean.

Dear Heavenly Father, I see from your word that you want us to come out from among the world and be clean. How different this world would be if all your believers were like this. Lord help me to be strong, and be bold. Help me to be clean. Your ways are higher than mine. You are holy, I am not. So, I can only do what you help me to do. Help me God, every single second of every single day! Help me to uphold your ways, one day at a time. In Jesus’ name I pray, AMEN!

Carol (carolvorwe)

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Leviticus 4-7; Hebrews 3

Then the Lord said to Moses, “Give the following instructions to the people of Israel. This is how you are to deal with those who sin unintentionally by doing anything that violates one of the Lord’s commands.” (Leviticus 4:1, NLT)

I read through the Lord’s instructions to Moses in Leviticus 4-7. They are thorough. They are lengthy. So when I get to Hebrews 3 and the mention of Moses in comparison to Jesus, the connection is fresh.

And so, dear brothers and sisters who belong to God and are partners with those called to heaven, think carefully about this Jesus whom we declare to be God’s messenger and High Priest. For he was faithful to God, who appointed him, just as Moses served faithfully when he was entrusted with God’s entire house.

But Jesus deserves far more glory than Moses, just as a person who builds a house deserves more praise than the house itself. For every house has a builder, but the one who built everything is God.

Moses was certainly faithful in God’s house as a servant. His work was an illustration of the truths God would reveal later. But Christ, as the Son, is in charge of God’s entire house. And we are God’s house, if we keep our courage and remain confident in our hope in Christ. (Hebrews 3:106, NLT)

The scriptures go further to warn against a hardening of the heart against God.

That is why the Holy Spirit says,

“Today when you hear his voice,
    don’t harden your hearts
as Israel did when they rebelled,
    when they tested me in the wilderness.
There your ancestors tested and tried my patience,
    even though they saw my miracles for forty years.
10 So I was angry with them, and I said,
‘Their hearts always turn away from me.
    They refuse to do what I tell them.’
11 So in my anger I took an oath:
    ‘They will never enter my place of rest.’”

12 Be careful then, dear brothers and sisters. Make sure that your own hearts are not evil and unbelieving, turning you away from the living God. 13 You must warn each other every day, while it is still “today,” so that none of you will be deceived by sin and hardened against God. (Hebrews 3:7-13, NLT)

It caused me to think on things that would harden my heart in any event–and can I keep a hardening heart in one area of my life from hardening against God?

I’m so thankful for Jesus, who took my sins, washed me clean with his sacrifice. I can lay them down before him, the intentional and unintentional and tangled mess, and he still calls me loved. He still calls me daughter. He still calls me forgiven. He is my high priest and my hope.

Courtney (66books365)

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Leviticus 1-3; Psalm 27; Hebrews 2

I like looking at the Old Testament sacrifices – they symbolise thanksgiving, loyal fulfillment of covenant engagements to God, and that loving trust which will call on Him in the day of trouble. This is what God looks for from me. God is love and desires my love and delights in seeing expressions of self -forgetting and self-sacrificing service in which love reveals itself. This is to God even as food is to me. Love cannot be satisfied except with love returned.

“Speak to the Israelites and tell them: When any of you brings an offering to the Lord from the livestock, you[a] may bring your offering from the herd or the flock.

“If his gift is a burnt offering from the herd, he is to bring an unblemished male. He must bring it to the entrance to the tent of meeting so that he[b] may be accepted by the Lord. He is to lay his hand on the head of the burnt offering so it can be accepted on his behalf to make atonement for him. – Leviticus 1:2-4 HCSB

My need for the infinitie love of God cannot be met by me alone. The sacrificial offering illustrated that I am a sinful person who has fallen away from perfect love. The self offering of love of Jesus, from the Father, on behalf of sinners like me, became a reality. It was a Divine love because it was the supreme expression of the perfect love of Jesus to His Father in total obiedience to die on the cross.

I have asked one thing from the Lord;
it is what I desire:
to dwell in the house of the Lord
all the days of my life,
gazing on the beauty of the Lord
and seeking Him in His temple. – Psalm 27:4 HCSB

And so the law is full of love and the duties of the law is love and love fulfills the law. Sin is now designed and employed for the maintenance of love and therefore obedience to the law and the reign of love in my life are different but the same. One of the most sublime lessons of the law is the fact that God is love.

But we do see Jesus—made lower than the angels for a short time so that by God’s grace He might taste death for everyone—crowned with glory and honor because of His suffering in death.

For in bringing many sons to glory, it was entirely appropriate that God—all things exist for Him and through Him—should make the source[d] of their salvation perfect through sufferings. For the One who sanctifies and those who are sanctified all have one Father.[e] That is why Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers. – Hebrews 2:9-11 HSCB

The love and grace of God – the supreme proof of those are furnished at the cross. Love is not me loving God but rather God loving me and sending His Son to take my punishment for turning my back on God.

Father, thank You for loving me. Help me reveal Your love to others by loving them. Amen

Erwin (evanlaar1922)

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Exodus 38-40; Hebrews 1

We read in Exodus that Moses was given the task of putting up the tabernacle of the tent of meeting. God desired to dwell with His people.

Then the cloud covered the tent of the meeting, and the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle. And Moses was not able to enter the tent of meeting because the cloud settled on it, and the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle. Throughout all their journeys, whenever the cloud was taken up from over the tabernacle, the people of Israel would set out. But if the cloud was not taken up, then they did not set out till the day that it was taken up. For the cloud of the Lord was on the tabernacle by day, and fire was in it by night, in the sight of all the house of Israel throughout all their journeys.” (Exodus 40:34-38 ESV)

The cloud provided direction for the Israelites. They knew exactly when to go or when to stay. But Moses could not enter the tent as God’s presence was too powerful. We see this same power in God’s Son described in Hebrews.

Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by His Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world. He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power. After making purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, having become as much superior to angels as the name he has inherited is more excellent than theirs.” (Hebrews 1:1-4 ESV)

My grandmother passed away last week. I notice whenever anyone dies that some people take the stance that is assumed on TV, that people become angels in Heaven. Both people and angels are far inferior to God. We don’t understand the saving grace of the gospel if we think otherwise. I believe that my grandmother is in Heaven with the Lord not because was a “good” person but because she trusted in the One who could save her. This first chapter of Hebrews ends by describing the clear difference between angels and Christ.

You, Lord, laid the foundation of the earth in the beginning, and the heavens are the work of your hands; they will perish, but you remain; they will all wear out like a garment, like a robe you will roll them up, like a garment they will be changed. But you are the same, and your years will have no end. And to which of the angels has he ever said, ‘Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet? Are they not all ministering spirits sent out to serve for the sake of those who are to inherit salvation?” (Hebrews 1:10-14 ESV)

Lord,

We stand in awe of Your greatness. You have been since before the beginning of time and will be for eternity. Let us fix our eyes on Your goodness as we fight the human temptation to think of ourselves as equal with You or angels. May we instead humble ourselves before You.

Kellie

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Exodus 35-37; Psalm 26; Philippians 4

Six days work shall be done, but on the seventh day you shall have a Sabbath of solemn rest, holy to the Lord. Whoever does any work on it shall be put to death.

Exodus 35:2 ESV

God took the Sabbath pretty seriously. It has gradually gone out of style over the years. There is lots of (mostly self-motivated) debate around the Sabbath. Does it now mean on Sunday instead of Saturday? Does this law apply to us since we live under grace? Does this apply to modern day since it was not repeated in the New Testament? How do pastors and other church staff take a Sabbath when they have to work then? Can I participate in sports on Sunday? And so on.

I’m going to intentionally, admittedly side-step this debate and settle on one fact I think we can all agree on — we all need rest. We need time set apart from the crazy activities of the rest of the week to refresh and worship. We need to just stop, at least once a week and just be.

But as for me, I shall walk in my integrity;
    redeem me, and be gracious to me.
12 My foot stands on level ground;
    in the great assembly I will bless the Lord.

Psalm 26:11,12 ESV

Even if I have daily devotional time with Jesus, I still need that time each week to gather with other believers and worship, learn through others’ teaching of Scriptures, realign my week with God’s agenda, let Him level the path ahead.

Many things drive us from setting aside time to worship and be with other Christians — exhaustion, laziness, lack of transparency, scheduling conflicts, transportation troubles, viruses, illness, fear, judgment, guilt, depression, conflict, confusion, and more.

God doesn’t give a lot of latitude here. I need to be there. Stop the physical and mental chaos that sometimes ravages my days and get myself to church. Stepping away from everything else in my life, before God, with other believers, blessing the Lord, every week.

Greet every saint in Christ Jesus. The brothers who are with me greet you.

Philippians 4:21 ESV

As I bring my weekly life plan into sync with God’s glory, the blessings of Philippians 4 open up before me.

Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. . . The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. . . the God of peace will be with you.

I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. 13 I can do all things through him who strengthens me.

19 And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.

23 The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit.

Philippians 4:4-23 excerpts ESV

It takes serious discipline to get everyone up and out the door on Sunday morning. It takes profound trust to take a day off my to-do list. It takes some sacrifice to say “no” to some opportunities to preserve the rest and worship my body and soul need. I don’t always succeed, but I am reminded again today of the power of rest and the importance of God-above-all priorities.

Lord, help me to keep You first. First in my day, first in my week, first in my plans. I want to trust You with everything. Trust that six days is enough to accomplish everything You have for me. Grow my faith to walk this path of surrender more consistently. Show me clearly what Sabbath-rest looks like in my world. Thank you for the beautiful promises that come when we live recklessly for You. In Jesus name, Amen.

Erin (6intow)

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