Isaiah 14 Part 1–Restoration

The Lord has never hidden His love for Israel.  As they contemplated the destruction of their nation, Isaiah was called upon to also remind them restoration followed.  God’s timing is His own and history reminds us that Israel’s restoration as a nation was never really completed until 1948.  Still, God did restore His people.  He used the world after WWII to bring the Israeli people home from across Europe and the world.  Now Israel stands as an independent nation with influence across the globe.

Then and now, God has laid claim to HIs people. That is why those that honor God honor Israel.  It is also why those who hate God want Israel wiped from the map.  One can never underestimate the power of the tiny nation.  As God loves His people Israel, He also loves those around the world that have chosen to have a personal relationship with Him.  They are His adopted children and have the same devotion.  

As one of His chosen, we must live and act as the devoted ones.  Hide the word of God in our hearts. Pray without ceasing. Do not forsake the meeting and fellowship with other believers.  Instead, simply trust God and humbly follow His lead in our lives.  If we will, Like Israel, we will experience God’s restoration in our lives.

God Bless You


The Lord will have compassion on Jacob.
    Once again, He will choose Israel
    and will settle them in their own land.
Foreigners will join them
    and unite with the descendants of Jacob.
Nations will take them
    and bring them to their own place.
And Israel will take possession of the nations
    and make them male and female servants in the Lord’s land.
They will make captives of their captors
    and rule over their oppressors.

On the day the Lord gives you relief from your suffering and turmoil and from the harsh labor forced on you, 

you will take up this taunt against the king of Babylon:

                How the oppressor has come to an end!

                        How his fury[a] has ended!

The Lord has broken the rod of the wicked,
    the scepter of the rulers,
which in anger struck down peoples
    with unceasing blows,
and in fury subdued nations
    with relentless aggression.
All the lands are at rest and at peace;
    they break into singing.
Even the junipers and the cedars of Lebanon
    gloat over you and say,
“Now that you have been laid low,
    no one comes to cut us down.”

Joshua 14–A Long Time In Coming

Joshua and Caleb sat across the table from each other.  As they looked into each other’s eyes, there was a sense of accomplishment.  These two men had initially scouted the Promised Land and they were the spies that begged Israel to move forward. Now, Caleb approached his old friend and simply asked to be granted the land that God personally promised him in the presence of Joshua.

For Joshua it was a joyful day.  He was thrilled to grant to his friend the land God promised.  What’s more, as Philistine lands, He knew Caleb and His folks would clear it.  Joshua had grown old from the journey, but, Caleb had not! He was as fit as he had been 45 years before–another kind gift from God.  It had to be a great moment in the leadership journey for Joshua, clearly one so significant, that God wanted it in His word. 

Remaining faithful is much harder than simply being faithful. Life takes its toll on us. Years of following, battling, and facing the world wears folks down. We begin to doubt whether God is going to come through in the end. This story in the life of Joshua reminds us that God always keeps His word.  He prepares us individually for the journey He has laid out. The Lord knows the journey’s ending as clearly as He knows its beginning. 

While it can be a long time in coming, we must wait on the Lord to complete His work and keep His promises. Isaiah said it best, “Those who wait upon the Lord will renew their strength.  They will mount up with wings–like eagles! they will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint.” Isaiah 40:31

Here’s to You Caleb! Go clear your mountain tops!!!

God Bless You


Now the people of Judah approached Joshua at Gilgal, and Caleb son of Jephunneh the Kenizzite said to him, “You know what the Lord said to Moses the man of God at Kadesh Barnea about you and me. I was forty years old when Moses the servant of the Lord sent me from Kadesh Barnea to explore the land. And I brought him back a report according to my convictions, but my fellow Israelites who went up with me made the hearts of the people melt in fear. I, however, followed the Lord my God wholeheartedly. So on that day Moses swore to me, ‘The land on which your feet have walked will be your inheritance and that of your children forever, because you have followed the Lord my God wholeheartedly.’[a]

10 “Now then, just as the Lord promised, he has kept me alive for forty-five years since the time he said this to Moses, while Israel moved about in the wilderness. So here I am today, eighty-five years old! 11 I am still as strong today as the day Moses sent me out; I’m just as vigorous to go out to battle now as I was then. 12 Now give me this hill country that the Lord promised me that day. You yourself heard then that the Anakites were there and their cities were large and fortified, but, the Lord helping me, I will drive them out just as he said.”

13 Then Joshua blessed Caleb son of Jephunneh and gave him Hebron as his inheritance. 14 So Hebron has belonged to Caleb son of Jephunneh the Kenizzite ever since, because he followed the Lord, the God of Israel, wholeheartedly. 15 (Hebron used to be called Kiriath Arba after Arba, who was the greatest man among the Anakites.)

Then the land had rest from war.

Numbers 28-30, Daily Living and Keeping Vows

As God was wrapping His time with Moses, He took the people through some basic life rules.  He told the Israelites about the various offerings and festivals they were to be apart of and that they were to present. God next turned His attention to the importance of keeping one’s vows to the Lord.  God was clear, If one makes a vow to the Lord, he must keep it. God takes vows seriously, and He would rather His people not make a vow; than He would have them make it lightly and then break it.

The people of Israel needed to hear that message.  They had not been faithful. From the moment of their deliverance from Egypt, they did nothing but complain and continuously dishonor their commitment to trust and follow God. Literally thousands lost their lives due to their sin and unbelief. They marched through the desert for years because they failed to trust God. Now, as they approached the promised land for the second time, God was preparing them to live a life as His chosen people.  Critical to that, was their integrity for keeping vows.

In our lives, we are similarly situated. God does not require that we make a plethora of vows. He only asks that we have a relationship with Him.  In that relationship, however, we need to take vows seriously. As with Israel, God would rather us not make a vow, than to make and then disregard it.  He loves us and has a incredible capacity for grace and mercy–but, as with any parent, He expects us to keep our word and honor our vows.  It is not too much to ask and we should be glad to honor him in it.God Bless You

Moses said to the heads of the tribes of Israel: “This is what the Lord commands:When a man makes a vow to the Lord or takes an oath to obligate himself by a pledge, he must not break his word but must do everything he said.

“When a young woman still living in her father’s household makes a vow to the Lord or obligates herself by a pledge and her father hears about her vow or pledge but says nothing to her, then all her vows and every pledge by which she obligated herself will stand. But if her father forbids her when he hears about it, none of her vows or the pledges by which she obligated herself will stand; the Lord will release her because her father has forbidden her.

“If she marries after she makes a vow or after her lips utter a rash promise by which she obligates herself and her husband hears about it but says nothing to her, then her vows or the pledges by which she obligated herself will stand. But if her husband forbids her when he hears about it, he nullifies the vow that obligates her or the rash promise by which she obligates herself, and the Lord will release her.