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Showing posts from June, 2017

Day 1~Starting the New Testament!!!

Day 1~ Matthew 1-3 
Welcome to reading the NT with me!!!! Let's get started!

As I read today's genealogy of Jesus in Matthew, I am reminded of what I just read yesterday in Revelation. The last words of Jesus in Revelation were, "I am the Root and the Off-spring of David, and the bright Morning Star." (Rev 22:16)
We learn of the "Root" title in Isaiah 11:10 "In that day the Root of Jesse will stand as a banner for the peoples; the nations will rally to him, and his place of rest will be glorious." And now today we read Matthew giving a detailed list of who Jesus came from to prove his lineage from Abraham to Jesse to David to Joseph. 

The "star" title was given to Israel's future Deliver in Numbers 24:17, "A star will come out of Jacob; a scepter will rise out of Israel." (Matthew, by going all the way back to Jacob, is showing his readers that prophesy was fulfilled initially with David and ultimately with Jesus.) 

God is such a…

We finished the 90 days!!!

Revelation 19-22
What an ending!After reading about the seals, the trumpets, the bowls of wrath, the battle that gets the beast and false prophet thrown into the fiery lake (19:20), and then the battle that ends with Satan getting thrown into the same lake of burning sulfur (20: 10)……..it was SO refreshing and peaceful to read, “Now the dwelling of God is with men…He will wipe every tear from their eyes.There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”  (21:3-4)Ahhh…..😌
That sounds so calming after reading all the turmoil we have read the past couple of days!!My body physically relaxed as I read that….Ahhhhhh…
But then…..I tensed up a little bit again when I read, “He who overcomes will inherit all this…..But the cowardly, the unbelieving….will be in the fiery lake of burning sulfur.” (21:8) 😳 It is good that we, as Christians, are reminded of this fact!It’s a good motivator (out of love for our fellow man) to share Jesus with o…

Day 89~ Rev. 16-18

God’s Wrath!!!! (16:1)  I am reminded of that verse in Malachi that says, “I, the Lord, do not change.” (3:6)  
When you read the Old Testament, you see that God warns of his coming wrath or shows his wrath.  It is very clear that, in order to be just and true, there must be punishment (wrath) for wrong doing.  I think that people today forget that point.  They get caught thinking that Jesus is all cozy, loving and good, therefore he did away with the wrath side of God.  Nothing can be farther from the truth! For those who have their names written in the book of life (Rev. 17:8), there will be no wrath. Our names are written there because of our faith in accepting what Christ did for us.  But for those who don’t have that faith and accept Christ’s free gift……….God’s wrath still exists.  He has not changed. 😱
Today’s reading can be a bit confusing if you are thinking chronologically. I want to purpose that chapters 17 &18 could have been placed prior (or concurrently) to chapter 16. …

Only two days to go!!~ Day 88

Rev 13-15
Yesterday we read that the dragon (Satan) was hurled to earth.  He went off to “make war against those who obey God’s commandments and hold to the testimony of Jesus”😳Woe!!
So, regardless if you are of the mindset of “pre-trib.”, or “post-trib.”, regarding the rapture, we can see in our reading today that there will be believers on earth during this turbulent time when we read John saying, “This calls for patient endurance and faithfulness on the part of the saints.” (13:10)😨
In today’s reading we are introduced to “a beast coming out of the sea” (13:1) who gets his power from Satan.  He is in authority for nearly 4 years.  He will “conquer” saints during his time of power. (13:7)💀 Then, another beast rises up (this time out of the earth); able to deceive people w/his miraculous signs (13:13).  My foot note says that this may be the false prophet noted in 16:13.  When it mentions his “horns like a lamb” (13:11) it suggests a gentleness in his approach. Yet, he spoke like the…

Day 87~ Rev.10-12

So to keep my mind straight, I needed to do a review of everything I have read so far in this book.  I thought I would share my summary with you. 7 churches (representative of believers today) have been warned and exhorted. (1-3) Then the angel says. “I will show you what will happen after this.” (4:1) John finishes writing what is now and then he starts on what will take place later (1:19). We read how Jesus opened each of the 7 seals. Seal 1 ~ Conquest (6:1) Seal 2 ~ Peace taken from the earth (6:4) Seal 3 ~ A limited drought causes famine(6:6) Seal 4 ~ 1/4 of the earth killed by sword, famine, plague & wild beasts (6:8) Seal 5 ~ More “fellow servants” will be killed (6:11) Seal 6 ~ A great earthquake flattens mountains and removes islands (6:14)
So, it seems that the six events were called the “great tribulation” (7:14). and a lot of people come out of that time period who “washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.” (7:14) The seventh seal being opened was delayed s…

Day 86~ Rev. 7-9

Quite a few years ago (maybe 20, but I remember the day well!), 2 Jehovah Witnesses came to my door.  I knew the Good News well enough to feel I could engage in a conversation with them.  We got to talking and they pointed out, using my Bible, that only 144,000 people were going to be sealed as servants of the Lord and get to go to heaven.  I got so confused because I was reading that out of my own Bible!  Obviously, I wasn’t too familiar with the book of Revelation!  They stumped me!  It didn’t sound right that such a small number would make it into heaven! Well, off they went and I sat down to launch into finding out what that number meant.  
I find I can get easily stumped when I read scripture outside of it’s context.  Apparently Jehovah Witnesses have been stumped as well!  I found that the 144,000 are Jewish people!! 12,000 from each tribe.  And these 144,000 were “those who did not defile themselves with women, for they kept themselves pure (14:4), during the tribulation (7:14). …

Day 85~ Only 5 days to go!

Revelation 4-6
I can’t help think about what we have learned already in our reading the N.T. about angels. Remember Day 72 when we read the author of Hebrews describing Jesus as being greater than angels?  I made the comment that there is a “whole other world (realm), with rulers and authorities operating, yet it still has all to do with Jesus!”  (I got that idea from Ephesians 3:9) Well, here we get another peek into the heavenly/angel world (realm) through John’s vision when he was “in the Spirit” (4:2).
There are a couple theories as to who the 24 elders are.  One says they can be “representative of the whole company of believers in heaven”. Another theory is that they are an exalted angelic order worshipping and serving God there.  It is more likely the latter of the two theories because of what we read in 5:10.  The elders, along with the creatures were singing, “You have made them to be a kingdom…and they will reign on earth.”  Because they sang “they” instead of “we” it is thought …

Day 84~ Revelation 1-3

We are on our last book! Guess what?!  I am starting again in Matthew right after I’m done with this book!  Wanna join me June 29th??
So…these first three chapters of Revelation address the condition of seven churches at the time of John (the apostle) being imprisoned for his faith.
I love what my introduction said to this book!  “The fundamental truths of Revelation do not depend on adopting a particular point of view (and believe me, there are many varying view points!). They are available to anyone who will read the book for its overall message and resist the temptation to become overly enamored with the details.”
So, what was your overall view of these first three chapters?
What I noticed was what was said right before or after each statement of, “He who has an ear to hear let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.” “To him who overcomes, I will give the right to eat from the tree of life,..” (2:7) “He who overcomes will not be hurt at all by the second death” (2:11) “I will also…

Day 83~ 2 John - 3 John, Jude

Did you know that it’s thought that Jude was a younger brother of Jesus?  Matt. 13:55 lists the boys Mary had after Jesus: James (became a leader in the church), Joseph Jr. ,Simon and Judas (AKA Jude).
It sounds like Jude was needing to address the same issues that John was addressing in his letter we read yesterday.  Men, in the church, were distorting the truth that was first preached by eyewitnesses to Christ’s resurrection.
Boy, Jude rails on these leaders inthechurch (shepherds who feed only themselves- vs.12)!!  After pointing out and telling what will happen to them (judgement -vs.15), I love how Jude shifts, “But you, dear friends, build yourselves up in your most holy faith and pray in the Holy Spirit.” That’s what we are doing by reading the Bible everyday!  We are building ourselves up in our most holy faith!! 😊
The verse that stuck out the most to me in today’s reading was, “Be merciful to those who doubt; snatch others from the fire and save them; to others show mercy, mixed…

Day 82~ 1 John 4-5

Yesterday, I mentioned that John is refuting Gnostic teachings in this letter.  One of those teachings is that Jesus was born only as a man.  The Christ descended on the man at his baptism and left him before his suffering on the cross.  So, today we read John refuting that by explaining that Jesus Christ was God coming into the world (5:1), was baptized (water) and died (blood) (5:6).
Another teaching of Gnostics is that they claimed to possess an elevated knowledge, a “higher truth” known only to a certain few.  The Greek word “gnosis” means “to know”.  This teaching completely contradicts Christianity because it is by faith we are saved, not by knowledge (Eph. 2:8-9), and Christ’s offer for salvation is for everyone, not just a select few. (John 3:16). Therefore, John refutes this teaching as well by saying “I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life.” (5:13). 
An English teacher would be proud of how John sum…

Day 81~ 1 John 1-3

Did you know John and Jesus were cousins?  Yeah, their moms were sisters!
So here we are, about 50 years after Jesus had died on the cross.  The 12 disciples, Paul & his friends have spent the past 50 years preaching the Good News.  But, at the same time, the devil was busy twisting scripture and creating new thoughts to confuse believers.  John uses this letter to address these wrong thoughts that today we call Gnostic teaching.  One of the teachings of Gnosticism is: matter is inherently evil (man’s body is matter, therefore it is evil) and spirit is good.  As a result of this belief, anything done in the body, even the grossest sin, has no meaning because real life exists in the spirit realm only.  In other words they gave themselves free license to live a sin filled life! Therefore, John uses ch.1-3 to set them straight on that point. “Whoever claims to live in him must walk as Jesus did.” (2:6) and “Anyone who does not do what is right is not a child of God..” (3:10)
Did you noti…

Day 80~ 2 Peter 1-3

Only 10 more days!  You are in the home stretch of finishing the 90 day reading plan!!
This second letter from Peter seems like it was written for today’s church!  He wrote this letter to warn these believers (& us) and to refresh their memory that this will happen:  “….watch out for false teachers (2:1) and scoffers (3:3) that are in the church.” 😦
“Many will follow their shameful ways and will bring the way of truth into disrepute.” (2:2)😨  That means people who confess to be Christians will live openly, immoral lives (not held in check by any sense of shame- according to my footnote), causing all Christians to have a bad reputation.
I had a gal come into the center last week who claimed to be a Cristian.  She volunteers in a leadership role at her church, has had a sexual relationship with her boyfriend for years and is now contemplating an abortion if her unborn child isn’t healthy. There is something dreadfully wrong here!!!  This girl seemed to have no shame for her relationship…

Day 79~ 1 Peter 2-5

I love how Peter uses the Old Testament as a source for teaching!  
Peter quotes  Psalm 34:12-16 (3:10-12).  He refers to Noah “while the ark was being built”, which is in Genesis 8 (3:20), and he quotes Isaiah a couple times (2:6 & 22) as well as Proverbs (4:18 & 5:5).
It reminds me of when Paul said to Timothy in his second letter, “All Scripture is God- breathed and is useful for teaching…” (3:16-17).
I actually had a Christian man say to me, not too long ago, Old Testament writings don’t apply to today’s Christian.  They were written for that time and society.  It doesn’t apply to us now that we are under the grace of Christ. Well….. Paul didn’t believe that and either did Peter, as we can seeing in our reading today!

What stood out to you?

Day 78~ James 4- 1Peter 1

No doubt, James and Peter knew each other well, and worked together preaching Jesus to the Jews.  So, it shouldn’t be surprising that they spoke of the same thing in these two letters we read today.  None the less, I was surprised to pick up on a theme they both wrote about. (I don’t think I would have have picked up on it if I wasn’t reading straight through the end of one book and starting the next book in the same sitting.)
Both wrote about the prophets of old.  Did you notice that?  James says, “Brothers, as an example of patience in the face of suffering, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord.  As you know, we consider blessed those who have persevered.” (5:10) Peter spoke of the prophets and their faith in the future coming of Christ. (1:10).  Jewish Christians at this time were experiencing persecution for their faith and they were probably wondering, “Where is Jesus?? I thought he was going to come back and save us from this!!!! Both writers were doing what I said in …