Prayer and Worship

1Ti 2:1-2 ESV  First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people,  (2)  for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. 

 

As followers of God we should be praying for all mankind but particularly for those that have been placed in positions of government on this planet. Our Father either allows these people to be in these positions or He sets them up Himself.

 

Dan 2:20-22 ESV  Daniel answered and said: "Blessed be the name of God forever and ever, to whom belong wisdom and might.  (21)  He changes times and seasons; he removes kings and sets up kings; he gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to those who have understanding;  (22)  he reveals deep and hidden things; he knows what is in the darkness, and the light dwells with him.

 

It’s pleasing in the eyes of our Father for us to pray on behalf of others. It’s a sign of the empathy we should have for our fellow man that has been shrouded in darkness and given over to a reprobate mind so they might learn the true knowledge and power of the One True God. Notice what Timothy says: “There is one God”. There is no god made up of two or three different parts but all part of the same being. There is ONE GOD who is our Saviour.

 

1Ti 2:3-6 ESV  This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior,  (4)  who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.  (5)  For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus,  (6)  who gave himself as a ransom for all, which is the testimony given at the proper time.

 

There is also one mediator who Timothy identifies as Jesus the Christ. Jesus gave himself as a ransom for all. He didn’t sacrifice his life for some, but for all. Jesus’ sacrifice was enough to cover ALL sin. Otherwise, his sacrifice would be inadequate.

There is ONE God who is our Father in heave. There is ONE messiah who gave his life so we might gain ours. He is our High priest (Heb 5:5-6) and our brother (Heb 2:11-15) but as Timothy points out he is not God. He is our head and he sits at the right hand of the Father. All things have been put in subjection to him except the Father Himself (1 Cor 15:27).

 

We honor Jesus as the head of the church, as the one who laid down his life to pay our debt for the sins we commit. We give respect him and are under his authority. He is our lord and we are his subjects. We worship God the Father alone and no other.

 

Rev 22:8-9 ESV  I, John, am the one who heard and saw these things. And when I heard and saw them, I fell down to worship at the feet of the angel who showed them to me,  (9)  but he said to me, "You must not do that! I am a fellow servant with you and your brothers the prophets, and with those who keep the words of this book. Worship God."

 

AMEN

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Questions

Today some questions were raised to me that I would like to share with the group. The questions and my answers are as follows:

 

Is the Sabbath part of the law? If yes, it's obligatory to respect all the laws?

 

Ex 20:8-11 is the 4th commandment. It is included in the 10 commandments and therefore is indeed part of the law. You can also find it in Deu 5:12-15.

 

Exo 20:8-11 ESV  "Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.  (9)  Six days you shall labor, and do all your work,  (10)  but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God. On it you shall not do any work, you, or your son, or your daughter, your male servant, or your female servant, or your livestock, or the sojourner who is within your gates.  (11)  For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day. Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.

 

Deu 5:12-15 ESV  "'Observe the Sabbath day, to keep it holy, as the LORD your God commanded you.  (13)  Six days you shall labor and do all your work,  (14)  but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God. On it you shall not do any work, you or your son or your daughter or your male servant or your female servant, or your ox or your donkey or any of your livestock, or the sojourner who is within your gates, that your male servant and your female servant may rest as well as you.  (15)  You shall remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt, and the LORD your God brought you out from there with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm. Therefore the LORD your God commanded you to keep the Sabbath day.

 

In Psalm 119:152 and 160 we are told that Yah's laws are everlasting or age-abiding.

 

Psa 119:152 ESV  Long have I known from your testimonies that you have founded them forever.

 

 

Psa 119:160 ESV  The sum of your word is truth, and every one of your righteous rules endures forever.

 

In Mat 5:17-20 Jesus himself tells us that heaven and earth will pass away before a single punctuation mark passes away from the law.

 

Mat 5:17-20 ESV  "Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. (18)  For truly, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the Law until all is accomplished. (19)  Therefore whoever relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever does them and teaches them will be called great in the kingdom of heaven. (20)  For I tell you, unless your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.

 

In Jer 31:33 the prophet tells us of a future time when Yah will write His laws on the hearts of His people.

 

Jer 31:33 ESV  For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares the LORD: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts. And I will be their God, and they shall be my people.

 

 

This indicates that in the future when man has a more direct relationship with their Creator that His laws are an integral part of that relationship.

 

We are to observe the law in its entirety. We aren’t allowed to pick and choose which laws we keep and which we don’t. See the following verses for confirmation of this statement (Deu 28:58; Deu 31:12; Deu 32:46; Deu 30:11-20; Jas 2:10-13)

 

Deu 28:58 ESV  "If you are not careful to do all the words of this law that are written in this book, that you may fear this glorious and awesome name, the LORD your God,

 

 

Deu 30:11-20 ESV  "For this commandment that I command you today is not too hard for you, neither is it far off.  (12)  It is not in heaven, that you should say, 'Who will ascend to heaven for us and bring it to us, that we may hear it and do it?'  (13)  Neither is it beyond the sea, that you should say, 'Who will go over the sea for us and bring it to us, that we may hear it and do it?'  (14)  But the word is very near you. It is in your mouth and in your heart, so that you can do it.  (15)  "See, I have set before you today life and good, death and evil.  (16)  If you obey the commandments of the LORD your God that I command you today, by loving the LORD your God, by walking in his ways, and by keeping his commandments and his statutes and his rules, then you shall live and multiply, and the LORD your God will bless you in the land that you are entering to take possession of it.  (17)  But if your heart turns away, and you will not hear, but are drawn away to worship other gods and serve them,  (18)  I declare to you today, that you shall surely perish. You shall not live long in the land that you are going over the Jordan to enter and possess.  (19)  I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and curse. Therefore choose life, that you and your offspring may live,  (20)  loving the LORD your God, obeying his voice and holding fast to him, for he is your life and length of days, that you may dwell in the land that the LORD swore to your fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give them."

 

 

Deu 31:12 ESV  Assemble the people, men, women, and little ones, and the sojourner within your towns, that they may hear and learn to fear the LORD your God, and be careful to do all the words of this law,

 

 

Deu 32:46 ESV  he said to them, "Take to heart all the words by which I am warning you today, that you may command them to your children, that they may be careful to do all the words of this law.

 

 

Jas 2:10-13 ESV  For whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become accountable for all of it.  (11)  For he who said, "Do not commit adultery," also said, "Do not murder." If you do not commit adultery but do murder, you have become a transgressor of the law.  (12)  So speak and so act as those who are to be judged under the law of liberty.  (13)  For judgment is without mercy to one who has shown no mercy. Mercy triumphs over judgment.

 

 

There is no provision to break the laws of God. He doesn’t provide license as man does for breaking the laws of man.

 

They say in 1 Cor: 15:55-57 that the sting of death is sin and the strength of sin is the law. What does this mean?

 

In the ISV 1 Cor 15:56 reads:

 

1Co 15:55-57 ISV  "Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting?"  (56)  Now death's stinger is sin, and sin's power is the Law.  (57)  But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus the Messiah!

 

 

Death’s stinger or its power is sin. Sin leads to death. Paul stated that the wages of sin is death (Rom 6:23).

 

Rom 6:23 ESV  For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

 

Death is the penalty for the breaking of the law of God. Since Yah is a merciful God he instituted another administrative system to take the place of that death penalty. It was added so that man’s life might be preserved despite his sins (Gal 3:19).

 

Gal 3:19 ESV  Why then the law? It was added because of transgressions, until the offspring should come to whom the promise had been made, and it was put in place through angels by an intermediary.

 

This law was the sacrificial system. Without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sins (Heb 9:22).

 

Heb 9:22 ESV  Indeed, under the law almost everything is purified with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins.

 

This sacrificial system was added to preserve our lives and the death penalty we deserve was paid by an animal before Christ was crucified. It wasn’t Yah’s intention but it happened due to our disobedience Jer 7:22-23).

 

Jer 7:22-23 ESV  For in the day that I brought them out of the land of Egypt, I did not speak to your fathers or command them concerning burnt offerings and sacrifices.  (23)  But this command I gave them: 'Obey my voice, and I will be your God, and you shall be my people. And walk in all the way that I command you, that it may be well with you.'

 

We brought the death penalty on ourselves through our disobedience to the law of God. That penalty was paid by Jesus (Heb 7:27-28; Heb 9:12-14; Heb 9:26; Heb 10:2; 1 Cor 15:21-22).

 

Heb 7:27-28 ESV  He has no need, like those high priests, to offer sacrifices daily, first for his own sins and then for those of the people, since he did this once for all when he offered up himself.  (28)  For the law appoints men in their weakness as high priests, but the word of the oath, which came later than the law, appoints a Son who has been made perfect forever.

 

Heb 9:12-14 ESV  he entered once for all into the holy places, not by means of the blood of goats and calves but by means of his own blood, thus securing an eternal redemption.  (13)  For if the blood of goats and bulls, and the sprinkling of defiled persons with the ashes of a heifer, sanctify for the purification of the flesh,  (14)  how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without blemish to God, purify our conscience from dead works to serve the living God.

 

 

Heb 9:26 ESV  for then he would have had to suffer repeatedly since the foundation of the world. But as it is, he has appeared once for all at the end of the ages to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself.

 

 

Heb 10:2 ESV  Otherwise, would they not have ceased to be offered, since the worshipers, having once been cleansed, would no longer have any consciousness of sins?

 

 

1Co 15:21-22 ESV  For as by a man came death, by a man has come also the resurrection of the dead.  (22)  For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive.

 

In Gal 3:13 it says that Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law. Please explain.

 

The debt we owed for our disobedience was cancelled through the sacrifice of the perfect lamb of God, Jesus the Christ. He gave his life so that we might receive the gift of salvation and an opportunity in the resurrection (Col 2:14).

 

Col 2:13-14 ESV  And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses,  (14)  by canceling the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands. This he set aside, nailing it to the cross.

 

The curse of the law is death. The law is not the curse. The curse, death, is brought on through the disobedience of the law. We have earned death through our breaking of the law. Jesus paid that debt and now we receive the gift of eternal or eonian life because of his selfless sacrifice. He died for us.

 

We can no longer live in our sinful ways (Rom 6:1-2).

 

Rom 6:1-2 ESV  What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound?  (2)  By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it?

 

We must make every effort to keep the law of the God minus the sacrificial system which was fulfilled by Jesus (Heb 10:1).

 

Heb 10:1 ESV  For since the law has but a shadow of the good things to come instead of the true form of these realities, it can never, by the same sacrifices that are continually offered every year, make perfect those who draw near.

 

The law referred to here is the sacrificial law. The moral law of God is eternal and everlasting. It will be written in our hearts and will become melded with our thoughts so we keep it by our very nature and not because we are forced.

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Did Jesus Tell Us to Hate?

When reading Jesus' comments in Luke 14:26 it's easy for one to get the wrong idea of what he is trying to convey. Christ at no time ever told His followers, or anyone else for that matter, they should hate. Quite the opposite. Many times the translation from the native language into English changes the essence of what was said. Only through examining the scriptures at a depper level can we really know what is being said.

 

Did Jesus Teach Hate?

Luk 14:26 ESV  "If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple.

 

This is strong language. Even so Jesus does not mean that one must hate his father or mother.

 

Mat 15:4 proves the opposite.

 

Mat 15:4 ESV  For God commanded, 'Honor your father and your mother,' and, 'Whoever reviles father or mother must surely die.'

 

It’s only where the element of choice comes in (cf. Mat 6:24) as it sometimes does, when father or mother oppose Christ. Then one must not hesitate to make the right choice.

 

Mat 6:24 ESV  "No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.

 

One must serve God before man.

 

Act 5:29 ESV  But Peter and the apostles answered, "We must obey God rather than men.

 

The language here is more sharply put than in Mat 10:37.

 

Mat 10:37 ESV  Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.

 

The point Jesus is making is that no one can come between us and God. If we allow this then we are not worthy. He is addressing the parable he gave in the verses prior.

 

Luk 14:18-20 ESV  But they all alike began to make excuses. The first said to him, 'I have bought a field, and I must go out and see it. Please have me excused.' (19)  And another said, 'I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I go to examine them. Please have me excused.' (20)  And another said, 'I have married a wife, and therefore I cannot come.'

 

There is no excuse we can make that will justify us not following the law of God and staying true to the covenant He made with us.

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November 3, 2018
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