Luke 2 Part 3–Jesus 1st Day at the Temple

Luke takes Jesus from the manger to the temple.  In Luke’s Gospel, we learn of God’s confirmation of Jesus at His purification.  Jesus is first greeted By Simeon a devout worshipper of God.  God told Simeon He would not die until he met the Messiah.  Simeon was very old–so, when the Lord revealed Jesus to Him, Simeon was overjoyed. God kept His word and revealed the Savior to this man of faith.  Simeon blessed the Lord and blessed the Lord’s Mom! What a sight to behold.

Next, they met Anna the prophetess.  She had been a widow for many years and worshipped God in the temple every day.  The spirit revealed to her the identity of Jesus and Anna began to tell anyone who would listen that the Messiah had come.  What a great sense of conformation that had to have been for Joseph and Mary. This young couple were raising God’s Son–by faith and with little support.  But truth be told, they would learn that God was always there and would prepare, provide, and protect them and their Son the Savior.

As amazing as it was for Joseph and Mary, we receive the same personal attention from our Heavenly Father.  He knows us and our journey.  He is with us and prepares, protects, and provides for us just as He did for Jesus.  We too are His children, and He loves us and cherishes the relationship we have with Him.  We are not the Messiah, but we are part of His family.  We need to cling to the wonder of each of our own journeys and trust Him to lead us through them with peace and power!

God Bless You


And rwhen the time came for their purification according to the Law of Moses, they brought him up to Jerusalem sto present him to the Lord 23 (as it is written in tthe Law of the Lord, u“Every male who first opens the womb shall be called holy to the Lord”) 24 and to offer a sacrifice according to what is said in tthe Law of the Lord, v“a pair of turtledoves, or two young pigeons.” 25 Now there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon, and this man was wrighteous and xdevout, ywaiting for zthe consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. 26 And it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not asee death before he had seen bthe Lord’s Christ. 27 And he came in the Spirit into the temple, and when cthe parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him according to the custom of the Law, 28 he took him up in his arms and dblessed God and said,

 29  “Lord, now you are letting your servant5 depart ein peace,

faccording to your word;

 30  for gmy eyes have seen your hsalvation

 31  ithat you have prepared in the presence of all peoples,

 32  ja light for revelation to the Gentiles,

and kfor glory to lyour people Israel.”

33 And mhis father and his mother marveled at what was said about him. 34 And Simeon blessed them and said to Mary his mother, “Behold, this child is appointed nfor the fall and rising of many in Israel, and for a sign othat is opposed 35 (and a sword will pierce through your own soul also), so that thoughts from many hearts may be revealed.”

36 And there was pa prophetess, Anna, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was advanced in years, having lived with her husband seven years from when she was a virgin, 37 and then as a widow until she was eighty-four.6 She did not depart from the temple, qworshiping with rfasting and prayer night and day. 38 And coming up at that very hour she began to give thanks to God and to speak of him to all who were swaiting for the redemption of Jerusalem.

Luke 1 Part 3–God’s Mom, Wow!

Execution is everything.  Gabriel had already spoken to Zachariah about the Herald that was his son.  Now several months later Gabriel made his second announcement to a young virgin in Nazareth, named Mary.  His announcement would divide time.  He told this young girl she would carry the Son of God and be the mother of God on earth.  How amazingly overwhelming the thought of being a mom, much less the mom of the Son of God? Unlike Zachariah, Mary said she would be the servant of the Most-High God, Adonai. 

Mary would take on a task that would be unparalleled in history.  Those of us who have raised our families know that moms are tireless and sacrificial from beginning to the end.  They are bear-like in their protection, nurse-like in their nurture, and “Christ-like” in their sacrifice.  We can never overstate the critical nature of God’s choice of a mom for His Son.  History shows us God chose well! The Lord Jesus is the most definitive figure ever to stalk the panorama of Human History! (Kierkegaard) His Mom, Mary watched His growth, His life , His ministry, and His death. She saw His legacy and the building of the early church. It would have been a gut-wrenching and life giving. I can only imagine Luke’s discussions with Mary, they would have been amazing.


God Bless You


In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, 27 to a virgin betrothed[b] to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. And the virgin’s name was Mary. 28 And he came to her and said, “Greetings, O favored one, the Lord is with you!”[c] 29 But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and tried to discern what sort of greeting this might be. 30 And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. 31 And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. 32 He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, 33 and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.”

34 And Mary said to the angel, “How will this be, since I am a virgin?”[d]

35 And the angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born[e] will be called holy—the Son of God. 36 And behold, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son, and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren. 37 For nothing will be impossible with God.” 38 And Mary said, “Behold, I am the servant[f] of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.

Isaiah 66–Isaiah’s Concluding Prophecy

So, in closing , God makes His position clear; I created all this!  The heavens are my throne and the earth my footstool! Please know that it is not your sacrifices that impress me, it is your hearts.  Make no mistake; I know the difference.  I watched my beloved speak of me with Love–and they are persecuted.  I hate it, but, know this–that behavior will not go unpunished.  As any father, I will love my kids–I absolutely adore them.  So, those that harm them will face the wrath of an angry Father.  

But here is the thing, I love My kids from every nation and people. I will bless those that love Me no matter where they are from or who they are! Conversely, there will be no mercy on those that hate Me and prey on My people.  there will be a reckoning like none other.  In short, be ready for I will be back, and you will know it when it happens.  In the meantime, I love you and will be there with and for you until My return! 

Few would say that God was not making His conclusion clear.  He loves His own.  It is not a thing that you can pretend.  Seek first His kingdom and righteousness; and all these things will be added to you! Matthew 6:33

Help me , Father, to walk in your ways and live a life worthy of Your Love.

God Bless You


This is what the Lord says:

“Heaven is my throne,
    and the earth is my footstool.
Where is the house you will build for me?
    Where will my resting place be?
Has not my hand made all these things,
    and so they came into being?”
declares the Lord.

“These are the ones I look on with favor:
    those who are humble and contrite in spirit,
    and who tremble at my word.
But whoever sacrifices a bull
    is like one who kills a person,
and whoever offers a lamb
    is like one who breaks a dog’s neck;
whoever makes a grain offering
    is like one who presents pig’s blood,
and whoever burns memorial incense
    is like one who worships an idol.
They have chosen their own ways,
    and they delight in their abominations;
so I also will choose harsh treatment for them
    and will bring on them what they dread.
For when I called, no one answered,
    when I spoke, no one listened.
They did evil in my sight
    and chose what displeases me.”

Hear the word of the Lord,
    you who tremble at his word:
“Your own people who hate you,
    and exclude you because of my name, have said,
‘Let the Lord be glorified,
    that we may see your joy!’
    Yet they will be put to shame.
Hear that uproar from the city,
    hear that noise from the temple!
It is the sound of the Lord
    repaying his enemies all they deserve.

“Before she goes into labor,
    she gives birth;
before the pains come upon her,
    she delivers a son.
Who has ever heard of such things?
    Who has ever seen things like this?
Can a country be born in a day
    or a nation be brought forth in a moment?
Yet no sooner is Zion in labor
    than she gives birth to her children.
Do I bring to the moment of birth
    and not give delivery?” says the Lord.
“Do I close up the womb
    when I bring to delivery?” says your God.
10 “Rejoice with Jerusalem and be glad for her,
    all you who love her;
rejoice greatly with her,
    all you who mourn over her.
11 For you will nurse and be satisfied
    at her comforting breasts;
you will drink deeply
    and delight in her overflowing abundance.”

12 For this is what the Lord says:

“I will extend peace to her like a river,
    and the wealth of nations like a flooding stream;
you will nurse and be carried on her arm
    and dandled on her knees.
13 As a mother comforts her child,
    so will I comfort you;
    and you will be comforted over Jerusalem.”

14 When you see this, your heart will rejoice
    and you will flourish like grass;
the hand of the Lord will be made known to his servants,
    but his fury will be shown to his foes.
15 See, the Lord is coming with fire,
    and his chariots are like a whirlwind;
he will bring down his anger with fury,
    and his rebuke with flames of fire.
16 For with fire and with his sword
    the Lord will execute judgment on all people,
    and many will be those slain by the Lord.

17 “Those who consecrate and purify themselves to go into the gardens, following one who is among those who eat the flesh of pigs, rats and other unclean things—they will meet their end together with the one they follow,” declares the Lord.

18 “And I, because of what they have planned and done, am about to come[a] and gather the people of all nations and languages, and they will come and see my glory.

19 “I will set a sign among them, and I will send some of those who survive to the nations—to Tarshish, to the Libyans[b] and Lydians (famous as archers), to Tubal and Greece, and to the distant islands that have not heard of my fame or seen my glory. They will proclaim my glory among the nations. 20 And they will bring all your people, from all the nations, to my holy mountain in Jerusalem as an offering to the Lord—on horses, in chariots and wagons, and on mules and camels,” says the Lord. “They will bring them, as the Israelites bring their grain offerings, to the temple of the Lord in ceremonially clean vessels. 21 And I will select some of them also to be priests and Levites,” says the Lord.

22 “As the new heavens and the new earth that I make will endure before me,” declares the Lord, “so will your name and descendants endure. 23 From one New Moon to another and from one Sabbath to another, all mankind will come and bow down before me,” says the Lord. 24 “And they will go out and look on the dead bodies of those who rebelled against me; the worms that eat them will not die, the fire that burns them will not be quenched, and they will be loathsome to all mankind.”

Isaiah 65–God’s New Heaven and New Earth

Isaiah 65 is a difficult chapter.  It is broken into several parts. It begins with a promise of restoration for the remnant of Israel.  It is a breath of fresh air for those exiled to Babylon.  In the short term it describes the return after exile in nice and hopeful detail.

There is however a clear message of judgement for the rebellious.  God goes into detail about the peoples’ sin, their ignoring God, and worshipping other gods.  He even details eating pork and other non-kosher foods.  It is not God attacking the nation’s dietary laws, it is a Father exasperated by His chosen’s apparent disregard for their national identity and their covenant to trust and follow Him.

The final section, however, is the most wonderful part of the chapter.  It is the Father’s description of what lies ahead.  “See I will create a new Heaven and a new Earth!”  It was not only a promise to Israel, but it was a promise to all God’s chosen.  Face it, then and now there was pain, poverty, injustice, and death.  Families were in disarray, lives were wasted, and people were in states of hopelessness–SOUND FAMILIAR?  This was a loving Father’s reminder to His beloved that this is a dot on a very long line! What we must look forward to is a place of beauty, of love, and of peace.  No more injustice, no more pain, and no more separation from God.

For the nation of Israel, that was a promise that could not come too soon.  From their inception, they were always hated by the world, because they were different! They chose to follow one God and allow Him to dictate their journey! It seemed ludicrous to many and offensive to the rest.  Living lives of selflessness and humility had to be fake and pompous, right?  The promise is clear, if we will trust and follow our Lord, then we will enjoy eternity with Him.  We will live in a new Heaven and new earth without pain, without death, without ridiculous bickering, or injustice. I would humbly argue that such a promise is worth our love and devotion.  It was made for us, and planned for us by a Father that simply loves His own.  Embrace it and follow Him!

God Bless You


“See, I will create
    new heavens and a new earth.
The former things will not be remembered,
    nor will they come to mind.
18 But be glad and rejoice forever
    in what I will create,
for I will create Jerusalem to be a delight
    and its people a joy.
19 I will rejoice over Jerusalem
    and take delight in my people;
the sound of weeping and of crying
    will be heard in it no more.

20 “Never again will there be in it
    an infant who lives but a few days,
    or an old man who does not live out his years;
the one who dies at a hundred
    will be thought a mere child;
the one who fails to reach[a] a hundred
    will be considered accursed.
21 They will build houses and dwell in them;
    they will plant vineyards and eat their fruit.
22 No longer will they build houses and others live in them,
    or plant and others eat.
For as the days of a tree,
    so will be the days of my people;
my chosen ones will long enjoy
    the work of their hands.
23 They will not labor in vain,
    nor will they bear children doomed to misfortune;
for they will be a people blessed by the Lord,
    they and their descendants with them.
24 Before they call I will answer;
    while they are still speaking I will hear.
25 The wolf and the lamb will feed together,
    and the lion will eat straw like the ox,
    and dust will be the serpent’s food.
They will neither harm nor destroy
    on all my holy mountain,”
says the Lord.

Isaiah 52–God promises Two Great Freedoms

Isaiah is moved by God to bring hope.  First, He announces to Israel of their pending release from slavery.  He reminds Israel that as they went down to Egypt as guests, they were soon made slaves.  After slavery, He freed them. He delivered them, and He will do it again.  It is important to note they were not yet slaves.  He promises that they will not have to rush out in some daring escape, no, instead, they would leave deliberately and confidently–as they did from Egypt.

Next, Isaiah brings more hope–not just to the soon to be captive Israelites, but to the world.  Isaiah then describes Christ’s sacrifice to save us all.  Beaten beyond human recognition stripped and slain on a cross.  That prophecy is a great reminder that, as God’s chosen people, those who are saved can stand with confidence, walk with peace, and know that the same God who freed Israel from the hands of Egypt, Assyria, and the Persian empire; will also free those that trust and follow Him.

We walk in peace and confidence that God, our Father, will prepare, protect, and provide for us. We will not escape trials; we will not avoid hurts or pain. None have in the past; nor, will anyone avoid these realities until Christ’s return.  We simply need to trust God to lead us through this journey, and we must walk humbly until He either takes us from through death or returns and we join Him in the air.  Either way, when the journey is done, He will be glorified as the God that completed every promise that He has ever made!

God Bless You


Wake up, wake up, O Zion!
    Clothe yourself with strength.
Put on your beautiful clothes, O holy city of Jerusalem,
    for unclean and godless people will enter your gates no longer.
Rise from the dust, O Jerusalem.
    Sit in a place of honor.
Remove the chains of slavery from your neck,
    O captive daughter of Zion.
For this is what the Lord says:
“When I sold you into exile,
    I received no payment.
Now I can redeem you
    without having to pay for you.”

This is what the Sovereign Lord says: “Long ago my people chose to live in Egypt. Now they are oppressed by Assyria. What is this?” asks the Lord. “Why are my people enslaved again? Those who rule them shout in exultation.[a] My name is blasphemed all day long.[b] But I will reveal my name to my people, and they will come to know its power. Then at last they will recognize that I am the one who speaks to them.”

How beautiful on the mountains
    are the feet of the messenger who brings good news,
the good news of peace and salvation,
    the news that the God of Israel[c] reigns!
The watchmen shout and sing with joy,
    for before their very eyes
    they see the Lord returning to Jerusalem.[d]
Let the ruins of Jerusalem break into joyful song,
    for the Lord has comforted his people.
    He has redeemed Jerusalem.
10 The Lord has demonstrated his holy power
    before the eyes of all the nations.
All the ends of the earth will see
    the victory of our God.

11 Get out! Get out and leave your captivity,
    where everything you touch is unclean.
Get out of there and purify yourselves,
    you who carry home the sacred objects of the Lord.
12 You will not leave in a hurry,
    running for your lives.
For the Lord will go ahead of you;
    yes, the God of Israel will protect you from behind.

The Lord’s Suffering Servant

13 See, my servant will prosper;
    he will be highly exalted.
14 But many were amazed when they saw him.[e]
    His face was so disfigured he seemed hardly human,
    and from his appearance, one would scarcely know he was a man.
15 And he will startle[f] many nations.
    Kings will stand speechless in his presence.
For they will see what they had not been told;
    they will understand what they had not heard about.[g]

Isaiah 51–The Great Part of Being One of His Chosen

This is one of Isaiah’s prophecies about Israel’s release and return to the Promised Land.  At teh time of the writing, Israel was still intact, but the ten tribes would soon be scattered and Judah and Benjamen would be captured and exiled to Babylon.  So, the Prophet was preparing for those who would be the remnant of then the great Israel.

God continued to love His people despite their abandonment of their faith.  He allowed their punishment but included a promise of restoration.  Both in the age of the Persian control and again in this recent Era, Israel was returned to reclaim its inheritance.  In both instances, the opposition was not important.  Infact, the only prominant player was Israel itself.  Both times It was God that ushered in the return and it went off without a hitch.

We need to remember that it is God and His plan that always prevails.  You can look from any perspective, but in the end, God’s DNA is all over the place.  We as his chosen need to cling to His promise and walk with confidence knowing he is in power and prepared.  We can never forget that we are His people called according to His word to be part of His family.  With that, we can live lives of peace by simply choosing to follow Him humbly.  That is simply not too much to ask!

God Bless You


“Hear me, you who know what is right,
    you people who have taken my instruction to heart:
Do not fear the reproach of mere mortals
    or be terrified by their insults.
For the moth will eat them up like a garment;
    the worm will devour them like wool.
But my righteousness will last forever,
    my salvation through all generations.”

Awake, awake, arm of the Lord,
    clothe yourself with strength!
Awake, as in days gone by,
    as in generations of old.
Was it not you who cut Rahab to pieces,
    who pierced that monster through?
10 Was it not you who dried up the sea,
    the waters of the great deep,
who made a road in the depths of the sea
    so that the redeemed might cross over?
11 Those the Lord has rescued will return.
    They will enter Zion with singing;
    everlasting joy will crown their heads.
Gladness and joy will overtake them,
    and sorrow and sighing will flee away.

12 “I, even I, am he who comforts you.
    Who are you that you fear mere mortals,
    human beings who are but grass,
13 that you forget the Lord your Maker,
    who stretches out the heavens
    and who lays the foundations of the earth,
that you live in constant terror every day
    because of the wrath of the oppressor,
    who is bent on destruction?
For where is the wrath of the oppressor?
14     The cowering prisoners will soon be set free;
they will not die in their dungeon,
    nor will they lack bread.
15 For I am the Lord your God,
    who stirs up the sea so that its waves roar—
    the Lord Almighty is his name.
16 I have put my words in your mouth
    and covered you with the shadow of my hand—
I who set the heavens in place,
    who laid the foundations of the earth,
    and who say to Zion, ‘You are my people.’”

Isaiah 42 Part 1–The Character of God’s Chosen and of God

God made it clear to Isaiah that his chosen are people with character.  They do not whine or complain.  They are people of integrity that represent God well and represent themselves as separate and different.  They are selfless, content with God’s plan and leadership.  They will seek God with their heart.  They do not compromise or put their needs ahead of those of the Father.

As such, God takes them by the hand and leads them.  He protects, provides, and brings them to a place that they walk and act like the God that leads them.  Unlike the world, they are humble, honest and consider others needs as important as their own.  So as any good Father Adonai meet5s and exceeds the meeting of their needs.  He will never be outdone.  He answers prayers with such specificity and meets needs so completely that his power and authority is not an issue.

In our world, so many voices seek to undermine and minimize God’s hand in the world.  They would have one believe that either things happen by coincidence or at the expertise from their own hands. We must not be fooled by such a ridiculous lie.  One need only look up and see the stars to understand how insignificant our impact on the world.  We need to trust and follow God and allow him to complete his plan in our lives and in the lives of those we pass each day. Ours is not to try to figure it out God’s plan, but to simply allow Him to lead us along the path of this amazing journey.

God Bless You


Behold my servant, whom I uphold,
    my chosen, in whom my soul delights.
I have put my Spirit upon him.
    he will bring forth justice to the nations.
He will not cry aloud or lift up his voice,
    or make it heard in the street.
a bruised reed he will not break,
    and a faintly burning wick he will not quench.
    he will faithfully bring forth justice.
He will not grow faint or be discouraged[a]
    till he has established justice in the earth.
    and the coastlands wait for his law.

Thus says God, the Lord,
    who created the heavens and stretched them out?
    who spread out the earth and what comes from it,
who gives breath to the people on it?
    and spirit to those who walk in it:
“I am the Lord; I have called you[b] in righteousness.
    I will take you by the hand and keep you.
I will give you as a covenant for the people,
    a light for the nations,
    to open the eyes that are blind,
to bring out the prisoners from the dungeon,
    from the prison those who sit in darkness.
I am the Lord; that is my name.
    my glory I give to no other,
    nor my praise to carved idols.
Behold, the former things have come to pass,
    and new things I now declare.
before they spring forth
    I tell you of them.”

Isaiah 41 Part 2–The Chosen Need Not Fear!

Isaiah is clear, God WILL uphold Israel.  No matter which enemy, no matter which age–Israel is still, and will always be, God’s chosen people.  Additionally, those who are in relationship with God through faith in Christ are also God’s chosen.  Isaiah makes the pronouncement that the chosen of God need not fear–He will uphold and defend them and their name until the end of time.

There have been so many cultures and people groups that have sought to eradicate God and His chosen from the face of the earth.  They have persecuted, martyred, and sought to destroy all evidence of God’s existence and impact on men’s lives.  Yet, as of 2020, they have failed repeatedly.  Oh, make no mistake, every resource has been leveraged.  Every attempt has been made. Armies, legislatures, congresses, parliamentary bodies, judicial bodies, evil empires, and tyrannical regimes have, in succession done their part to wipe the planet clean of God and His people.

The Great news is they have all failed–because, as Isaiah so articulately explains, God has committed to our protection and provision.  God can raise and destroy empires in an instant–Ask the Assyrians, the Babylonians, the Persians, the Greeks, the Romans, the Byzantines…Still, God calls His people to pray without ceasing.  He calls us to walk humbly and live holy lives.  He accepts us for who we are; but, calls us to become like Jesus.  In that process, though, He never abandons His beloved.  We must trust Him at His word. Walk as one that is bought with a price.

The world can continue to spew its hate and attempt to take God out of the picture, but, as has always been the case–the world will fail.  The created will never outsmart the creator. He has always been, is and will always be.  Conversely, those that would defeat the Lord are here for an instant and then disappear into obscurity.  We,God’s chosen, need to cling to His promise and walk in His way to enjoy the peace, protection, and provision He longs for us to enjoy.

God Bless You


But you, Israel, my servant,
    Jacob, whom I have chosen,
    the offspring of Abraham, my friend;
you whom I took from the ends of the earth,
    and called from its farthest corners,
saying to you, “You are my servant,
    I have chosen you and not cast you off”;
10 fear not, for I am with you;
    be not dismayed, for I am your God;
I will strengthen you, I will help you,
    I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

11 Behold, all who are incensed against you
    shall be put to shame and confounded;
those who strive against you
    shall be as nothing and shall perish.
12 You shall seek those who contend with you,
    but you shall not find them;
those who war against you
    shall be as nothing at all.
13 For I, the Lord your God,
    hold your right hand;
it is I who say to you, “Fear not,
    I am the one who helps you.”

14 Fear not, you worm Jacob,
    you men of Israel!
I am the one who helps you, declares the Lord;
    your Redeemer is the Holy One of Israel.
15 Behold, I make of you a threshing sledge,
    new, sharp, and having teeth;
you shall thresh the mountains and crush them,
    and you shall make the hills like chaff;
16 you shall winnow them, and the wind shall carry them away,
    and the tempest shall scatter them.
And you shall rejoice in the Lord;
    in the Holy One of Israel you shall glory.

Isaiah 36-39 A History Break

The Book of Isaiah stops and turns from prophetic to the historical.

It is amazing how brash the Godless can be.  The Assyrian Empire Had grown quite well. It’s King, Sennacherib, certainly thought himself invincible.  As he sent 180,000 troops to surround and capture Jerusalem, he assumed it would be a simple process.  His field commander approached the walls of Jerusalem and made the king’s announcement.  “Give it up…you do not stand a chance. Don’t listen to your king, he is deluded. If you think I am afraid of Him OR HIS GOD, you are wrong.  I am not afraid of the gods of my enemies; I have whipped them all.

Scripture reminds us repeatedly that men’s arrogance usually become the basis of their demise.  Here the Assyrian King placed way too much to confidence in his power and his men.  He laughed at Hezekiah’s promise to the people.  What he was about to learn, however, is that you can never underestimate the power of God.  What makes our Lord different from the rest of the world’s gods is that he is real.  How real? Well looking at the results–Sennacherib would say very real. So would the leaders of Egypt, Moab, Amelik, Midian, Sodom, Gomorrah, Babylon, Greece, Rome, and the list goes on.

I am a strong believer in the power of God. It has carried me through a very challenging journey. He has taught me repeatedly that it is our Lord that controls the lives of men. Our control is an illusion. On this very day as a category 4 hurricane has hit Texas and Louisiana, we are all reminded how quickly things can change.  Through all circumstance, we must seek the Lord and trust Him to carry us through. It will never be like we think, but it will always be amazing.  Help me Lord to trust You through thick and thin. Also, help me not to believe the lies of the world but, cling to the truth of your greatness.

God Bless You


36

The field commander said to them, “Tell Hezekiah:

“‘This is what the great king, the king of Assyria, says: On what are you basing this confidence of yours? You say you have counsel and might for war—but you speak only empty words. On whom are you depending, that you rebel against me? Look, I know you are depending on Egypt, that splintered reed of a staff, which pierces the hand of anyone who leans on it! Such is Pharaoh king of Egypt to all who depend on him. But if you say to me, “We are depending on the Lord our God”—isn’t he the one whose high places and altars Hezekiah removed, saying to Judah and Jerusalem, “You must worship before this altar”?

“‘Come now, make a bargain with my master, the king of Assyria: I will give you two thousand horses—if you can put riders on them! How then can you repulse one officer of the least of my master’s officials, even though you are depending on Egypt for chariots and horsemen[a]10 Furthermore, have I come to attack and destroy this land without the Lord? The Lord himself told me to march against this country and destroy it.’”

11 Then Eliakim, Shebna and Joah said to the field commander, “Please speak to your servants in Aramaic, since we understand it. Don’t speak to us in Hebrew in the hearing of the people on the wall.”

12 But the commander replied, “Was it only to your master and you that my master sent me to say these things, and not to the people sitting on the wall—who, like you, will have to eat their own excrement and drink their own urine?”

13 Then the commander stood and called out in Hebrew, “Hear the words of the great king, the king of Assyria! 14 This is what the king says: Do not let Hezekiah deceive you. He cannot deliver you! 15 Do not let Hezekiah persuade you to trust in the Lord when he says, ‘The Lord will surely deliver us; this city will not be given into the hand of the king of Assyria.’

16 “Do not listen to Hezekiah. This is what the king of Assyria says: Make peace with me and come out to me. Then each of you will eat fruit from your own vine and fig tree and drink water from your own cistern, 17 until I come and take you to a land like your own—a land of grain and new wine, a land of bread and vineyards.

18 “Do not let Hezekiah mislead you when he says, ‘The Lord will deliver us.’ Have the gods of any nations ever delivered their lands from the hand of the king of Assyria? 19 Where are the gods of Hamath and Arpad? Where are the gods of Sepharvaim? Have they rescued Samaria from my hand? 20 Who of all the gods of these countries have been able to save their lands from me? How then can the Lord deliver Jerusalem from my hand?”

21 But the people remained silent and said nothing in reply, because the king had commanded, “Do not answer him.”

Isaiah 28–The Precious Cornerstone

It is no wonder that the Prophet Isaiah was termed the evangelistic prophet.  Amid the discussion of the destruction of Israel (Ephriam and Judah); Isaiah switches gears and describes God’s precious cornerstone–Our Lord Jesus.  God promises to lay a new foundation.  A cornerstone–a precious cornerstone.  The new foundation will bring salvation and restoration to God’s chosen and destruction to their enemies.  That is a great promise to bring joy and hope.

As we are seeing in Isaiah, God loves His people like His children.  Like any father, God must discipline the blatant rebellion of the people; but he will also repay those that took advantage of the people and restore peace and prosperity to Israel. He was not simply throwing money at the people–He sacrificed His Son to bring restoration and fellowship back to the table.

God will allow us to sin and destroy our lives.  He does, however, provide an alternative to the death we have earned–Jesus, the precious cornerstone.  Then and now God calls us to follow Him and allow Him to provide salvation, restoration, and peace.  We simply must confess with our mouths that HE is lord and believe that God has raised Him from the dead and we will be saved.  What a firm foundation to cling to and what a mighty God we serve.

God Bless You


Therefore hear the word of the Lord, you scoffers,
    who rule this people in Jerusalem!
15 Because you have said, “We have made a covenant with death,
    and with Sheol we have an agreement,
when the overwhelming whip passes through
    it will not come to us,
for we have made lies our refuge,
    and in falsehood we have taken shelter”;
16 therefore thus says the Lord God,
“Behold, I am the one who has laid[d] as a foundation in Zion,
    a stone, a tested stone,
a precious cornerstone, of a sure foundation:
    ‘Whoever believes will not be in haste.’
17 And I will make justice the line,
    and righteousness the plumb line;
and hail will sweep away the refuge of lies,
    and waters will overwhelm the shelter.”
18 Then your covenant with death will be annulled,
    and your agreement with Sheol will not stand;
when the overwhelming scourge passes through,
    you will be beaten down by it.
19 As often as it passes through it will take you;
    for morning by morning it will pass through,
    by day and by night;
and it will be sheer terror to understand the message.
20 For the bed is too short to stretch oneself on,
    and the covering too narrow to wrap oneself in.
21 For the Lord will rise up as on Mount Perazim;
    as in the Valley of Gibeon he will be roused;
to do his deed—strange is his deed!
    and to work his work—alien is his work!
22 Now therefore do not scoff,
    lest your bonds be made strong;
for I have heard a decree of destruction
    from the Lord God of hosts against the whole land.