March 3

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“One-tenth of the produce of the land, whether grain from the fields or fruit from the trees, belongs to the Lord and must be set apart to him as holy” (Leviticus 27:30 NLT).

From: March 3, 2019

THE PRINCIPLE OF THE TITHE

The first principle of the tithe, which is ten percent of the harvest, is that it “belongs to the Lord.” Therefore, bringing the tithe to the Temple was not an offering, but an obligation. To do otherwise would be “robbery” (Mal. 3:8). It reminded the people that God is owner of all things.
 
The second principle is that the tithe is “holy.” It is “set apart” for special use. It was not to be consumed but given to the Temple for the support of the priests and their families. The Lord had given land to all the tribes of Israel except for the tribe of Levi. For the tribe of Levi was set apart unto the Lord as a tribe of priests. They were to care for the Temple and live off of the tithes given to the Lord from the other tribes.
 
Today, the followers of Jesus are not under the law, but under grace. Yet, the principle of the tithe is still relevant. For God is still owner of all things and His church still needs the support of His people.
 
PRAYER: Lord, thank you for the gift of life and for all that is needed for life. We thank You for meeting our needs in Christ Jesus. We therefore offer back to You freely all that we are and all that we have, knowing that all things belong to You. You are a giving God and we would be a giving people, full of thankfulness and generosity, just as You bless us to do so. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

‘Then Jesus said to the disciples, “Have faith in God. I tell you the truth, you can say to this mountain, ‘May you be lifted up and thrown into the sea,’ and it will happen. But you must really believe it will happen and have no doubt in your heart.”‘ (Mark 11:22-23 NLT).

From: March 3, 2018

FAITH THAT CAN MOVE MOUNTAINS
On the Monday morning of Passion Week, Jesus cursed a fig tree that was barren of fruit. The next morning as He and the disciples passed by the tree, Peter pointed out that it was “withered from the roots up.” In response, Jesus offered a lesser to greater argument (i.e. “fig tree to mountain”) that the disciples would be able to do even greater miracles if they only had faith.
 
As we consider this amazing promise from Jesus, let us be careful not to misunderstand the doctrine of faith. First, faith is not some neutral force with a power of its own. No, faith requires an object. And as Jesus taught, the object of biblical faith is God. Notice how Jesus began His teaching, “Have faith in God.” Jesus did not teach us to have faith in faith, but to have faith in God. We can believe something with all of our heart, yet nothing will happen unless God acts. Second, having recognized that biblical faith’s object is God, we must recognize that our requests must be according to God’s will. Consider these two Scriptures:
 
“And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him” (1 John 5:14-15).
 
“You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions” (James 4:3).
 
So, our faith must be in God whose power and will are paramount. Yet, having understood this, we must not forget the point of Christ’s teaching: Our faith in God can move mountains! Don’t focus on the mountain. Focus on the God who can move the mountain! For it’s not the size of your faith, but the size of your God that counts. As Jesus taught, just a little faith in a great God can move mountains!
 
“For truly, I say to you, if you have faith like a grain of mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move, and nothing will be impossible for you.” (Matt. 17:20).
 
It is not great faith in God, but faith in a great God that moves mountains!

“And Jesus went into Jerusalem and into the temple. So when He had looked around at all things, as the hour was already late, He went out to Bethany with the twelve” (Mark 11:11 NKJV).

From: March 3, 2017

And so ended the first day of Passion Week, Palm Sunday, 33 AD. After a very eventful day, Jesus and the Twelve spent the evening in Bethany, no doubt at the home of Lazarus, Martha and Mary. The Bible offers more detail about this week, than any other week since the week of creation recorded in Genesis.
 
                                              Creation Week                       Passion Week
Day 1/Sunday               Light                                             Triumphal entry
Day 2/Monday             Sky and seas                             Cleansing the Temple
Day 3/Tuesday             Land and plants                      Teaching in the Temple
Day 4/Wednesday     Sun, Moon and stars             Anointed in Bethany
Day 5/Thursday          Birds and fish                            Last Supper & Garden
Day 6/Friday                 Animals and Man                    Crucifixion and Death
Day 7/Saturday           Rested                                           In the tomb
 
Day 8/Sunday              Man’s Fall                                    Christ’s Resurrection!
 
The Bible zooms in on these two weeks for a day by day account. In the first week, all is created good, yet man falls into sin. In the second week, all has fallen into sin, yet is redeemed by Christ’s death and resurrection!

“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble” (Psalm 46:1 ESV)

From: March 3, 2016

Three divine attributes that we experience when we go to God in times of trouble: “Refuge”, “strength,” and “very present help.” God is our “refuge,” our shelter, shielding us from the storms of life when we trust his protection. God is our “strength,” both materially and physically, supplying and empowering us to survive during troubling times. And He is easily found when we call upon Him because He is a “very present help.” He is always only a prayer away. Of course, we know that God is always present with us, yet during times of trouble His presence seems intensified (or at least our awareness of God is intensified). Have you experienced these attributes of our God during times of trouble?

“And whenever you stand praying…” (Mark 11:25 NKJV)

From: March 3, 2015

In Christ’s teaching on prayer, He assumed that the disciples would pray standing. I’ve never done a study on the body positions of those praying in the Bible, but it might be an interesting research. Many pray while seated or while lying in the bed. I’m sure these postures are fine. Yet I have found that standing to pray affects not only my physical posture, but my spiritual and mental posture as well. Standing tends to focus my attention and awaken my awareness of God’s holy presence. It keeps my mind from wandering and my body from feeling sleepy. Have you tried standing to pray?

“The Scriptures declare, ‘My Temple will be called a house of prayer for all nations,’ but you have turned it into a den of thieves” (Mark 11:17 NLT)

From: March 3, 2014

On the Monday before Christ’s crucifixion He entered the Temple and cleared it of its sellers and money changers. They had apparently made the outer court, known as the Court of the Gentiles, into a marketplace. Jesus was furious. The outer court was meant to offer a place of prayer and refuge of hope to the nations, but the Jewish leaders had turned it into a retail business. This is a fair warning to the Church. Jesus has commissioned us to be a light and to proclaim the gospel to the nations. When we turn inward and use the Church for our own members’ gain, we neglect Christ’s Great Commission.

“Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!” (Psalm 46:10 ESV)

From: March 3, 2013

Stop talking and worrying. Turn off, turn down, pull away and listen. Then know. Know that He is God. Acknowledge, understand and experience His presence and power. Then pray and worship. Worship because it is the only appropriate response. Pray because the nations are far from God and it is His will to bring them back. Pray for the Day when God’s Name will be lifted up in all the earth.