March 9

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‘“Simon, are you asleep? Couldn’t you watch with me even one hour? Keep watch and pray, so that you will not give in to temptation. For the spirit is willing, but the body is weak.”’ (Mark 14:37 NLT).

From: March 9, 2019

HAS JESUS INVITED YOU TO PRAY WITH HIM?

Jesus invited Simon Peter, James, and John to keep watch and pray with Him in the Garden of Gethsemane. It was the night of His betrayal, the day before His trial and crucifixion. He wanted them as prayer partners. They were willing, but their flesh was weak and they kept dozing off.
 
Has Jesus invited you to pray with Him? Listen to the words of Jesus in the gospel of John, “If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you” (John 15:7). The key to following is abiding and the key to abiding is asking. Asking is the currency of the Kingdom.
 
Jesus not only invites us to pray with Him, but to pray in Him: “Most assuredly, I say to you, whatever you ask the Father in My name He will give you” (John 16:23).
 
PRAYER: Lord, we are amazed at the invitation to pray with You. Who are we that You would have us as prayer partners? Who are we that You would stir our hearts to pray not only for our family and friends, but also for the nations? May we so abide in You and You in us that our prayers are in alignment with Yours. We want to pray in the Spirit. Our flesh is weak, but we want to grow in prayer. Thank You Lord for calling us to this high and holy endeavor of prayer. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

“Then they sang a hymn and went out to the Mount of Olives”(Mark 14:26 NLT).

From: March 9, 2018

WHAT HYMN DID JESUS SING THE NIGHT BEFORE?
On the Thursday night before His crucifixion, Jesus and His disciples sang a hymn together after finishing the Passover meal. My first observation is that Jesus sang. O what joy it must have been to hear His voice sing praises to God! How wonderful to have been one of the disciples who joined with Him in harmony. But what hymn did they sing?
 
The Greek word translated “sang a hymn” is “hymneō” (ὑμνέω). Literally, “They ‘hymned’ as they went out.” We don’t have a verb for “hymning,” but we did borrow the Greek noun, “hymnos,” for our English noun, “hymn.” What is a hymn? The dictionary says, It is “a religious song or poem, typically of praise to God.” Yet, in both Jewish and Christian circles, the word hymn is used in a more precise way.
 
In their book, “Sing With Understanding: An Introduction to Christian Hymnody,” authors Eskew and McElrath describe a hymn as a kind of poem set to music. They write, “It should be simple and metrical in form, genuinely emotional, poetic and literary in style, spiritual in quality, and in its ideas so direct and so immediately apparent as to unify a congregation while singing it.”
 
So, the hymn is a unique form of worship music that usually begins as a poem before music is added. It is easy to sing, metrically precise, and sounds as good to the ear with or without accompaniment. It can be read aloud in private devotions, sung alone or together. Hymns are rich with words and doctrines from Scripture.
 
There are other types of worship songs. The apostle Paul encouraged singing three types in his letter to the Colossian church: “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God” (Col. 3:16).
 
So, what hymn did Jesus sing the night before His crucifixion? Jewish tradition called for singing the Paschal Psalms, Psalms 113 through 118, after the Passover meal. These psalms surely fit the definition of a hymn. They also match perfectly with the moment in time that Jesus faced.
 
Take a moment and read through Psalms 113 through 118. Pay special attention to the words of Psalm 118. Imagine you’re with the disciples as Jesus sings, while walking out into the night through the Eastern Gate of Jerusalem and up the Mount of Olives to pray.
 

“Then Miriam and Aaron spoke against Moses because of the Ethiopian woman whom he had married; for he had married an Ethiopian woman” (Numbers 12:1 NKJV).

From: March 9, 2017

Moses often had to endure the grumbling of the people, but it must have been even more painful when they spoke against his new wife. Even his own sister and brother, Miriam and Aaron, spoke behind his back concerning the Ethiopian woman. Yet, the Lord heard them.
 
Miriam seems to have been the leader in the backbiting. Aaron just followed along as usual, as he had with the golden calf incident. Miriam was, after all, the older sister. The one who had watched over baby Moses as he floated down the Nile and saw him taken up by the princess of Egypt. She was a prophetess in Israel. Perhaps she had risen to a position of influence with Moses after the apparent death of his first wife. And now, with this Ethiopian woman in his life, she felt a loss of influence with Moses.
 
Or perhaps she was upset that he had chosen an Ethiopian to marry. The word “Ethiopian” was actually “Cushite” in the Hebrew. The land of Cush might point to the lands South of Egypt or lands in Arabia. If Miriam and Aaron were against his marrying her because of her nationality or skin color, then God’s response to their racism was soon made clear. They were against Moses because of his wife, “so the anger of the Lord was aroused against them” (Num. 12:9).
 
A couple of takeaways: 1) Don’t speak against God’s man. God is listening. 2) Don’t speak against someone’s marriage because of skin color. You might get leprosy and lose your skin. Miriam did.

“But Moses said to him, ‘Are you jealous for my sake? Would that all the LORD’s people were prophets, that the LORD would put his Spirit on them!'” (Numbers 11:29 ESV)

From: March 9, 2016

How Moses responded to Joshua’s concern that two of the 70 elders were prophesying in the camp revealed his humble heart and also its alignment with God’s heart. Centuries later, Moses’ hope was fulfilled when the Spirit came to abide in those who believed in Christ. The 70 elders in the wilderness event was a foreshadowing of Pentecost. The Spirit is now available to all who believe. Yet, not all walk in Him. Would that all God’s people would be filled and walk in the Spirit.

“And when they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives” (Mark 14:26 NKJV)

From: March 9, 2015

Did Jesus sing? Absolutely. He and His disciples, like every other Jewish gathering for Passover concluded the sacred meal with singing. The traditional hymn selection would have been the Hallel Psalms 113-118. Take time to read through those psalms and picture the Lord and His disciples singing with baritone voices every word by heart. I’m sure they had memorized these psalms, just like we know the words to hymns like Amazing Grace. After all, they had been singing them every Passover with their families since they were born. Jesus sang before He went up on the Mount of Olives to pray. Jesus sang the night before He was crucified. Have you thought of hearing Jesus sing?

“We even saw giants there, the descendants of Anak. Next to them we felt like grasshoppers, and that’s what they thought, too!” (Numbers 13:33 NLT)

From: March 9, 2014

Ten of the twelve spies that Moses sent into the Promised Land brought back a negative scouting report. Not negative in the sense that it wasn’t a land “flowing with milk and honey” as the Lord had promised. But negative in that they saw themselves and their God as too small to overcome the “giants” there. When we focus on life’s obstacles they appear as “giants,” overshadowing our view of God. We are overwhelmed by the size of the problem and we are tempted to turn back from God’s call as the Israelites did. Take care. Those who turn back miss God’s amazing adventure. They find themselves wandering the wilderness until they are ready to believe God. Or worse, they die in the desert, never knowing what God had in store. Is your God bigger than the obstacles that face you?

“But Moses said to him, ‘Are you jealous for my sake? Would that all the LORD’s people were prophets, that the LORD would put his Spirit on them!'” (Numbers 11:29 ESV)

From: March 9, 2013

How Moses responded to Joshua’s concern that two of the 70 elders were prophesying in the camp. This revealed Moses’ humble heart and also its alignment with God’s. For Moses’ desire was fulfilled when the Spirit came to abide in those who believed in Christ after His ascension. This event in the wilderness is a foreshadow of Pentecost.