All posts tagged: Israel

3 Incredible Promises & 1 Big Reason


“But now, God ’s Message, the God who made you in the first place, Jacob, the One who got you started, Israel: “Don’t be afraid, I’ve redeemed you. I’ve called your name. You’re mine. When you’re in over your head, I’ll be there with you. When you’re in rough waters, you will not go down. When you’re between a rock and a hard place, it won’t be a dead-end— Because I am God, your personal God, The Holy of Israel, your Savior. I paid a huge price for you: all of Egypt, with rich Cush and Seba thrown in! That’s how much you mean to me! That’s how much I love you! I’d sell off the world to get you back, trade the creation just for you.” Isaiah 43:1-4 MSG Check out The Promises: When you are in over your head – I will be with you When you are in rough waters You will not go down When you’re between a rock and a hard place It won’t be a dead-end Check out the …

1 Reason Nations come to ruin


They cast off all restraints… One of the most dangerous things any people, society, culture or nation can do to itself is to cast off all restraint and do whatever seems right in their own eyes. We find this phrase in the dark days of Israel’s history. A period when “everyone did what was right in his own eyes.” Judges 17:6 In our day and time, the absence of restraint is celebrated and applauded. In the words of a song writer, “we exult our rights over and above the one who makes us righteous,” and we use that to justify our behavior or lifestyle. Unfortunately, we fail to realize that this kind of moral, spiritual, and social anarchy brings nothing but destruction. Israel cast off all restraints and they were brought to ruin. Sodom and Gomorrah cast off all restraints and they were brought to ruin. The Roman Empire cast off all restraints and they were brought to ruin. Ephesus, the city where the church was warned to return to its first love, cast off all restraints and they too …

Why does God approve war and violance in the OT?


Frankly, parts of the Old Testament are sometimes difficult to accept, especially as they relate  to God’s character. Take his command to King Saul of Israel: “Now go, attack the Amalekites  and totally destroy all that belongs to them. Do not spare them; put to death men and women,  children and infants, cattle and sheep, camels and donkeys” (1 Samuel 15:3, TNIV). Camels and  donkeys? Children and infants? Or how about this statement regarding Israel’s destruction of  Jericho at God’s prompting: “They devoted the city to the LORD and destroyed with the sword  every living thing in it—men and women, young and old, cattle, sheep and donkeys” (Joshua 6:21,TNIV)? Is the God of the Old Testament a lover of war and destruction? Is God a warmonger who  arbitrarily takes out his frustration? Reading certain passages, one could get this impression. This issue presents quite a challenge for Christians who have come to believe that love is the defining attribute of God. Even more so, these passages often propagate the doubts of non-Christians who are skeptical of God …

The Prayer of Impartation


The book of Numbers has a very short but powerful prayer that was used to bestow blessings upon the people of God. Moses and Aaron were commanded by God to bestow blessings upon His people, but they were to do it according to the formula detailed in the verses below. Unless the Lord gives me a different way to close my Sunday morning worship service, I always close with that prayer. I call it A Prayer of Impartation. It is important to note here that it was God himself who put the words in the mouth of the priest. What that means is that there should be room for the movement of God’s Spirit in that moment of impartation. You don’t necessarily have to read the verse word for word, but you will need to tap into the spirit of the words. Another thing worth mentioning is that they were to put the name of the Lord upon the people. Nothing else could bring about the blessing from the Lord. To be blessed by God is to …

A Biblical Perspective on Gamling


Part 1 Gambling, both legal and illegal, is a phenomenon gaining unprecedented acceptance. Because it is so widespread, Christians must look at this activity to determine the ethical and moral implications. Gambling Defined Advocates of gambling often try to place this activity in the same category as other ventures which involve risk. They describe farming, business, insurance, and even investments as gambling because the outcome is unpredictable and losses can occur. In this way they hope to transfer the respectability of legitimate ventures to gambling. L. M. Starkey, Jr., has made the following helpful observation: Life does have its normal risks which one must accept with faith and courage. These normal risks are in no sense equivalent to the risks in a game of chance. Gambling devises artificial risks in the hope of excessive gain far beyond what the investment of time, money, or skill would justify. In gambling the chance is unrelated to any creative effort called for by the farmer or the stockbroker in the responsible investment of his mental, monetary, and physical funds. 1. To distinguish …

Israel, Archeology, Temple Mount – Beautiful


The Herodian version of the model shows visitors how excavators believe the Temple Mount site appeared prior to its destruction by Roman troops in the year 70 CE. The focus is on the southern portion of the enclosure, and includes reconstructions of Robinson’s Arch (an early overpass linking the top of the platform with the major city street below), the Hulda Street gates and passages onto the platform, the Royal Stoa, and the Second Temple. The reconstruction is based on the excavations at the Temple Mount under the direction of Ronny Reich and regional archeologist Gideon Avni. On view at the Davidson Center,

Edging God Out – Silly and Senseless


As we try to understand Jonah there is only but one place to look to give us a glimpse of who exactly this guy is and why is he behaving in such erratic way. His name: Jonah means “dove,” a symbol for Israel as silly and senseless (Hos. 7:11) In this book he is acting without sense. The word dove means – easily deceived. Like a bird fluttering about, confused and without direction. He thinks he can escape God by running to another nation. Here is the problem: The problem with  doves is that they do not lament the loss of their young taken from them, but will make their nest again in the same place leaving it expose to danger… 1. Doves doesn’t learn from their mistakes… just like doves, we return to our own vomit… making the same bad choices, bad decisions, abusive relationships, foolish spending etc…  Don’t be silly and senseless – learn from your mistakes. The second problem is that the dove is easily enticed they have no heart, no understanding, as many other fowls do, Proverbs 1:17; Proverbs 7:23. 2.  Doves lack the ability to discern danger… just like doves, …

ALL IN


I would like to introduce a four-part blog series that I will deliver over the next four days. I am taking my title from Mark 12:30 and I am going to unpack the verse talking about what it means to love the Lord with all your heart, soul, mind and strength. I am praying that it will be a blessing to you. Mark 12:30 And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength Part 1: How to love the Lord with all you Heart According to the Bible, the heart is the center not only of spiritual activity, but of all the operations of human life. Proverbs 4:23 calls it the “wellspring of life.” The heart is also the seat of the conscience (Romans 2:15). It is naturally wicked (Genesis 8:21), and has the potential to contaminate life and character (Matthew 12:34; 15:18. Therefore, if the heart must love God fully and completely, a few things must …

In Search for a King


The Visit of the Wise Men Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the east came to Jerusalem, saying, “Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.” When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him; and assembling all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Christ was to be born. They told him, “In Bethlehem of Judea, for so it is written by the prophet: And you, O Bethlehem, in the land of Judah,are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; for from you shall come a ruler who will shepherd my people Israel. Then Herod summoned the wise men secretly and ascertained from them what time the star had appeared. And he sent them to Bethlehem, saying, “Go and search diligently for the child, and when you have found him, bring …