From: November 24, 2018
Scripture for today: Ezekiel 47:1-48:35; 1 Peter 2:11-3:7; Psalm 119:49-64; Proverbs 28:12-13
From: November 24, 2017
The psalmist spoke not of the Lord, but directly to Him. Not, “He is my portion,” but “O Lord, You are my portion!” He had already made the determined choice to “keep” the Lord’s words. Now he recognized that his “portion,” his inheritance, for such a Word-committed-life was the Lord Himself. As Jesus told His disciples, “If you love Me, you will keep My Words” (John 14:15). Following the Lord’s Word, we are able to say, “I am the Lord’s and He is mine!” This is not seeking the Lord’s hands, but rather seeking His face. We obey not out of fear, nor from a motivation of profit, but out of sincere love. As the lyrics to the old spiritual song declare, “Give me Jesus. Give me Jesus. You can have all this world, but give me Jesus.”
From: November 24, 2016
As exiles in this world, citizens of the kingdom of heaven, we have been set free from slavery to sin and the world’s system. We live in this world, but we are not of this world. Our citizenship is in heaven. Yet, this “freedom” is not a license to sin, but liberty to live for Christ. As Paul said, “For sin will have no dominion over you, since you are not under law but under grace” (Rom.6:14). So, we live as “servants of God,” freely submitting to the authorities ordained by God, not out of fear or duty, but out of the grace and love of Christ. We have been set free to serve God.
From: November 24, 2015
Ezekiel spoke of a time when life-giving waters would flow from the temple down the valley towards the Dead Sea, bringing life and healing to the land of Israel. Not only is this temple larger and more spectacular than any ever built in Israel, even the terrain of the land is changed by it. There is currently no life in the Dead Sea. But there is coming a day when fruit bearing trees will line both sides of this river of life as it flows down past En Gedi to the lowest point below sea level, and changes the saline content of the Dead Sea, so that fish live there in abundance. For those who believe in a literal fulfillment of Ezekiel, this is a description of Israel during the Millennial Reign of Christ.
…Those who take it as mostly figurative, view the prophecies concerning Israel as now belonging to the Church. They believe that the Ezekiel temple is to be taken as being spiritually fulfilled in the Church. Those who view it as literal, believe that God still has unfulfilled promises for Israel and that Ezekiel’s temple will be built someday. I hold to this more literal view.With this in mind, I offer this list of “seven sanctuaries of Israel” (from Dr. Lamar Cooper’s commentary on Ezekiel) found in Scripture to help orient our placement of Ezekiel’s temple:
1) Solomon’s Temple. Read 1 Kings 6-8 for its construction. Destroyed by Nebuchadnezzar in 587 BC.
2) Zerubabbel’s Temple. Built when the Jews returned from Babylonian captivity. Dedicated in 516 BC.
3) Herod’s Temple. Actually, an enlargement of the existing structure from Zerubabbel, Herod began the temple improvements in 19 BC. He had retaining walls built that greatly enlarged the temple mount area as well. The Western Wall, also known as the “wailing wall,” was built as a retaining structure during this time and still stands today.
4) The Present Temple. This is the Church, which is made up of Christ as the Chief Cornerstone, the apostles as the foundation, and believers as its holy stones (Eph. 2:20-22).
5) The Temple of Revelation 11. This is the temple that stands during the time of tribulation after the rapture. The Antichrist will set up world headquarters here.
6) Ezekiel’s Millennial Temple. Ezekiel 40-48 refers to the temple to be built in Jerusalem during the millennium for Israel’s use in worship commemorating the new covenant with Messiah.
7) The Eternal Temple. John records the end of the first heaven and the first earth (Rev. 21:1-3) and declares that God himself will dwell with his people and will be the temple of the new Jerusalem (Rev. 21-22).
From: November 24, 2014
When the oneness of our marital relationship is hindered, so is our prayer life. When husbands mistreat their wives (or vice versa) it affects their spiritual life as well. This should not surprise us for God has made us relational beings. And as such, a stone of disunity cast in one relationship, troubles the waters in another. Be reconciled to one another and live together in harmony, and watch your prayer life come alive again.
From: November 24, 2013
Or as in Numbers 32:23, “Be sure your sin will find you out.” Attempting to conceal sin never works. Eventually, it is revealed and the longer we try and hide it, the more it negatively affects us. Keep short accounts. Be quick to confess and repent. Likewise, be quick to forgive others.
From: November 24, 2012
It is not just the way we spell “Christmas” that is taking Jesus out of the season. It is the celebration of consumerism that is caustic to our souls. Why not join the Advent Conspiracy and “keep away from worldly desires” this season? Spend less. Give more. Worship fully. Love all. Put Christ back in Christmas.
From: November 24, 2011
When sleep doesn’t come for busy thoughts, rise and give thanks. Turn your mind to the many blessings of God and thank Him for each one. Count your blessings. It’s better for sleep than counting sheep. And more meaningful too. Happy Thanksgiving Day!