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14 October - 2 Chronicles 3; 4; Ezekiel 40; John 6


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Posted 14 October 2007 - 11:30 AM

First Portion

2 Chronicles 3; 4


3:1 Then Solomon began to build the house of Yahweh at Jerusalem on Mount Moriah, where Yahweh appeared to David his father, which he prepared in the place that David had appointed, in the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite. 3:2 He began to build in the second day of the second month, in the fourth year of his reign. 3:3 Now these are the foundations which Solomon laid for the building of the house of God. The length by cubits after the first measure was sixty cubits, and the breadth twenty cubits. 3:4 The porch that was in front, its length, according to the breadth of the house, was twenty cubits, and the height one hundred twenty; and he overlaid it within with pure gold. 3:5 The greater house he made a ceiling with fir wood, which he overlaid with fine gold, and ornamented it with palm trees and chains. 3:6 He garnished the house with precious stones for beauty: and the gold was gold of Parvaim. 3:7 He overlaid also the house, the beams, the thresholds, and its walls, and its doors, with gold; and engraved cherubim on the walls. 3:8 He made the most holy house: its length, according to the breadth of the house, was twenty cubits, and its breadth twenty cubits; and he overlaid it with fine gold, amounting to six hundred talents. 3:9 The weight of the nails was fifty shekels of gold. He overlaid the upper rooms with gold. 3:10 In the most holy house he made two cherubim of image work; and they overlaid them with gold. 3:11 The wings of the cherubim were twenty cubits long: the wing of the one was five cubits, reaching to the wall of the house; and the other wing was five cubits, reaching to the wing of the other cherub. 3:12 The wing of the other cherub was five cubits, reaching to the wall of the house; and the other wing was five cubits, joining to the wing of the other cherub. 3:13 The wings of these cherubim spread themselves forth twenty cubits: and they stood on their feet, and their faces were toward the house. 3:14 He made the veil of blue, and purple, and crimson, and fine linen, and ornamented it with cherubim. 3:15 Also he made before the house two pillars of thirty-five cubits high, and the capital that was on the top of each of them was five cubits. 3:16 He made chains in the oracle, and put them on the tops of the pillars; and he made one hundred pomegranates, and put them on the chains. 3:17 He set up the pillars before the temple, one on the right hand, and the other on the left; and called the name of that on the right hand Jachin, and the name of that on the left Boaz.

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Posted 14 October 2007 - 11:30 AM

4:1 Then he made an altar of brass, twenty cubits its length, and twenty cubits its breadth, and ten cubits its height. 4:2 Also he made the molten sea of ten cubits from brim to brim, round in compass; and its height was five cubits; and a line of thirty cubits encircled it. 4:3 Under it was the likeness of oxen, which encircled it, for ten cubits, encircling the sea. The oxen were in two rows, cast when it was cast. 4:4 It stood on twelve oxen, three looking toward the north, and three looking toward the west, and three looking toward the south, and three looking toward the east: and the sea was set on them above, and all their hinder parts were inward. 4:5 It was a handbreadth thick; and its brim was worked like the brim of a cup, like the flower of a lily: it received and held three thousand baths. 4:6 He made also ten basins, and put five on the right hand, and five on the left, to wash in them; such things as belonged to the burnt offering they washed in them; but the sea was for the priests to wash in. 4:7 He made the ten lampstands of gold according to the ordinance concerning them; and he set them in the temple, five on the right hand, and five on the left. 4:8 He made also ten tables, and placed them in the temple, five on the right side, and five on the left. He made one hundred basins of gold. 4:9 Furthermore he made the court of the priests, and the great court, and doors for the court, and overlaid their doors with brass. 4:10 He set the sea on the right side of the house eastward, toward the south. 4:11 Huram made the pots, and the shovels, and the basins. So Huram made an end of doing the work that he did for king Solomon in the house of God: 4:12 the two pillars, and the bowls, and the two capitals which were on the top of the pillars, and the two networks to cover the two bowls of the capitals that were on the top of the pillars, 4:13 and the four hundred pomegranates for the two networks; two rows of pomegranates for each network, to cover the two bowls of the capitals that were on the pillars. 4:14 He made also the bases, and the basins made he on the bases; 4:15 one sea, and the twelve oxen under it. 4:16 Huram his father also made the pots, the shovels, the forks, and all its vessels for king Solomon for the house of Yahweh of bright brass. 4:17 The king cast them in the plain of the Jordan, in the clay ground between Succoth and Zeredah. 4:18 Thus Solomon made all these vessels in great abundance: for the weight of the brass could not be found out. 4:19 Solomon made all the vessels that were in the house of God, the golden altar also, and the tables with the show bread on them; 4:20 and the lampstands with their lamps, to burn according to the ordinance before the oracle, of pure gold; 4:21 and the flowers, and the lamps, and the tongs, of gold, and that perfect gold; 4:22 and the snuffers, and the basins, and the spoons, and the fire pans, of pure gold: and as for the entry of the house, the inner doors of it for the most holy place, and the doors of the main hall of the temple were of gold.

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Posted 14 October 2007 - 11:31 AM

Second Portion

Ezekiel 40


40:1 In the five and twentieth year of our captivity, in the beginning of the year, in the tenth day of the month, in the fourteenth year after that the city was struck, in the same day, the hand of Yahweh was on me, and he brought me there. 40:2 In the visions of God brought he me into the land of Israel, and set me down on a very high mountain, whereon was as it were the frame of a city on the south. 40:3 He brought me there; and, behold, there was a man, whose appearance was like the appearance of brass, with a line of flax in his hand, and a measuring reed; and he stood in the gate. 40:4 The man said to me, Son of man, see with your eyes, and hear with your ears, and set your heart on all that I shall show you; for, to the intent that I may show them to you, you are brought here: declare all that you see to the house of Israel. 40:5 Behold, a wall on the outside of the house all around, and in the man’s hand a measuring reed six cubits long, of a cubit and a handbreadth each: so he measured the thickness of the building, one reed; and the height, one reed. 40:6 Then came he to the gate which looks toward the east, and went up its steps: and he measured the threshold of the gate, one reed broad; and the other threshold, one reed broad. 40:7 Every lodge was one reed long, and one reed broad; and the space between the lodges was five cubits; and the threshold of the gate by the porch of the gate toward the house was one reed. 40:8 He measured also the porch of the gate toward the house, one reed. 40:9 Then measured he the porch of the gate, eight cubits; and its posts, two cubits; and the porch of the gate was toward the house. 40:10 The lodges of the gate eastward were three on this side, and three on that side; they three were of one measure: and the posts had one measure on this side and on that side. 40:11 He measured the breadth of the opening of the gate, ten cubits; and the length of the gate, thirteen cubits; 40:12 and a border before the lodges, one cubit on this side, and a border, one cubit on that side; and the lodges, six cubits on this side, and six cubits on that side. 40:13 He measured the gate from the roof of the one lodge to the roof of the other, a breadth of twenty-five cubits; door against door. 40:14 He made also posts, sixty cubits; and the court reached to the posts, around the gate. 40:15 From the forefront of the gate at the entrance to the forefront of the inner porch of the gate were fifty cubits. 40:16 There were closed windows to the lodges, and to their posts within the gate all around, and likewise to the arches; and windows were around inward; and on each post were palm trees. 40:17 Then brought he me into the outer court; and behold, there were rooms and a pavement, made for the court all around: thirty rooms were on the pavement. 40:18 The pavement was by the side of the gates, answerable to the length of the gates, even the lower pavement. 40:19 Then he measured the breadth from the forefront of the lower gate to the forefront of the inner court outside, one hundred cubits, both on the east and on the north. 40:20 The gate of the outer court whose prospect is toward the north, he measured its length and its breadth. 40:21 The lodges of it were three on this side and three on that side; and its posts and its arches were after the measure of the first gate: its length was fifty cubits, and the breadth twenty-five cubits. 40:22 The windows of it, and its arches, and the palm trees of it, were after the measure of the gate whose prospect is toward the east; and they went up to it by seven steps; and its arches were before them. 40:23 There was a gate to the inner court over against the other gate, both on the north and on the east; and he measured from gate to gate one hundred cubits. 40:24 He led me toward the south; and behold, a gate toward the south: and he measured its posts and its arches according to these measures. 40:25 There were windows in it and in its arches all around, like those windows: the length was fifty cubits, and the breadth twenty-five cubits. 40:26 There were seven steps to go up to it, and its arches were before them; and it had palm trees, one on this side, and another on that side, on its posts. 40:27 There was a gate to the inner court toward the south: and he measured from gate to gate toward the south a hundred cubits. 40:28 Then he brought me to the inner court by the south gate: and he measured the south gate according to these measures; 40:29 and its lodges, and its posts, and its arches, according to these measures: and there were windows in it and in its arches all around; it was fifty cubits long, and twenty-five cubits broad. 40:30 There were arches all around, twenty-five cubits long, and five cubits broad. 40:31 The arches of it were toward the outer court; and palm trees were on its posts: and the ascent to it had eight steps. 40:32 He brought me into the inner court toward the east: and he measured the gate according to these measures; 40:33 and its lodges, and its posts, and its arches, according to these measures: and there were windows therein and in its arches all around; it was fifty cubits long, and twenty-five cubits broad. 40:34 The arches of it were toward the outer court; and palm trees were on its posts, on this side, and on that side: and the ascent to it had eight steps. 40:35 He brought me to the north gate: and he measured it according to these measures; 40:36 its lodges, its posts, and its arches: and there were windows therein all around; the length was fifty cubits, and the breadth twenty-five cubits. 40:37 The posts of it were toward the outer court; and palm trees were on its posts, on this side, and on that side: and the ascent to it had eight steps. 40:38 A room with its door was by the posts at the gates; there they washed the burnt offering. 40:39 In the porch of the gate were two tables on this side, and two tables on that side, to kill thereon the burnt offering and the sin offering and the trespass offering. 40:40 On the one side outside, as one goes up to the entry of the gate toward the north, were two tables; and on the other side, which belonged to the porch of the gate, were two tables. 40:41 Four tables were on this side, and four tables on that side, by the side of the gate; eight tables, whereupon they killed the sacrifices. 40:42 There were four tables for the burnt offering, of cut stone, a cubit and a half long, and a cubit and a half broad, and one cubit high; whereupon they laid the instruments with which they killed the burnt offering and the sacrifice. 40:43 The hooks, a handbreadth long, were fastened within all around: and on the tables was the flesh of the offering. 40:44 Outside of the inner gate were rooms for the singers in the inner court, which was at the side of the north gate; and their prospect was toward the south; one at the side of the east gate having the prospect toward the north. 40:45 He said to me, This room, whose prospect is toward the south, is for the priests, the keepers of the duty of the house; 40:46 and the room whose prospect is toward the north is for the priests, the keepers of the duty of the altar: these are the sons of Zadok, who from among the sons of Levi come near to Yahweh to minister to him. 40:47 He measured the court, one hundred cubits long, and a hundred cubits broad, foursquare; and the altar was before the house. 40:48 Then he brought me to the porch of the house, and measured each post of the porch, five cubits on this side, and five cubits on that side: and the breadth of the gate was three cubits on this side, and three cubits on that side. 40:49 The length of the porch was twenty cubits, and the breadth eleven cubits; even by the steps by which they went up to it: and there were pillars by the posts, one on this side, and another on that side.

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Posted 14 October 2007 - 11:34 AM

Third Portion

John 6


6:1 After these things, Jesus went away to the other side of the sea of Galilee, which is also called the Sea of Tiberias. 6:2 A great multitude followed him, because they saw his signs which he did on those who were sick. 6:3 Jesus went up into the mountain, and he sat there with his disciples. 6:4 Now the Passover, the feast of the Jews, was at hand. 6:5 Jesus therefore lifting up his eyes, and seeing that a great multitude was coming to him, said to Philip, “Where are we to buy bread, that these may eat?” 6:6 This he said to test him, for he himself knew what he would do.

6:7 Philip answered him, “Two hundred denarii worth of bread is not sufficient for them, that everyone of them may receive a little.”

6:8 One of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, said to him, 6:9 “There is a boy here who has five barley loaves and two fish, but what are these among so many?”

6:10 Jesus said, “Have the people sit down.” Now there was much grass in that place. So the men sat down, in number about five thousand. 6:11 Jesus took the loaves; and having given thanks, he distributed to the disciples, and the disciples to those who were sitting down; likewise also of the fish as much as they desired. 6:12 When they were filled, he said to his disciples, “Gather up the broken pieces which are left over, that nothing be lost.” 6:13 So they gathered them up, and filled twelve baskets with broken pieces from the five barley loaves, which were left over by those who had eaten. 6:14 When therefore the people saw the sign which Jesus did, they said, “This is truly the prophet who comes into the world.” 6:15 Jesus therefore, perceiving that they were about to come and take him by force, to make him king, withdrew again to the mountain by himself.

6:16 When evening came, his disciples went down to the sea, 6:17 and they entered into the boat, and were going over the sea to Capernaum. It was now dark, and Jesus had not come to them. 6:18 The sea was tossed by a great wind blowing. 6:19 When therefore they had rowed about twenty-five or thirty stadia, they saw Jesus walking on the sea,* and drawing near to the boat; and they were afraid. 6:20 But he said to them, “It is I. Don’t be afraid.” 6:21 They were willing therefore to receive him into the boat. Immediately the boat was at the land where they were going.

6:22 On the next day, the multitude that stood on the other side of the sea saw that there was no other boat there, except the one in which his disciples had embarked, and that Jesus hadn’t entered with his disciples into the boat, but his disciples had gone away alone. 6:23 However boats from Tiberias came near to the place where they ate the bread after the Lord had given thanks. 6:24 When the multitude therefore saw that Jesus wasn’t there, nor his disciples, they themselves got into the boats, and came to Capernaum, seeking Jesus. 6:25 When they found him on the other side of the sea, they asked him, “Rabbi, when did you come here?”

6:26 Jesus answered them, “Most certainly I tell you, you seek me, not because you saw signs, but because you ate of the loaves, and were filled. 6:27 Don’t work for the food which perishes, but for the food which remains to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you. For God the Father has sealed him.”

6:28 They said therefore to him, “What must we do, that we may work the works of God?”

6:29 Jesus answered them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in him whom he has sent.”

6:30 They said therefore to him, “What then do you do for a sign, that we may see, and believe you? What work do you do? 6:31 Our fathers ate the manna in the wilderness. As it is written, ‘He gave them bread out of heaven to eat.’”

6:32 Jesus therefore said to them, “Most certainly, I tell you, it wasn’t Moses who gave you the bread out of heaven, but my Father gives you the true bread out of heaven. 6:33 For the bread of God is that which comes down out of heaven, and gives life to the world.”

6:34 They said therefore to him, “Lord, always give us this bread.”

6:35 Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will not be hungry, and he who believes in me will never be thirsty. 6:36 But I told you that you have seen me, and yet you don’t believe. 6:37 All those whom the Father gives me will come to me. He who comes to me I will in no way throw out. 6:38 For I have come down from heaven, not to do my own will, but the will of him who sent me. 6:39 This is the will of my Father who sent me, that of all he has given to me I should lose nothing, but should raise him up at the last day. 6:40 This is the will of the one who sent me, that everyone who sees the Son, and believes in him, should have eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day.”

6:41 The Jews therefore murmured concerning him, because he said, “I am the bread which came down out of heaven.” 6:42 They said, “Isn’t this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How then does he say, ‘I have come down out of heaven?’”

6:43 Therefore Jesus answered them, “Don’t murmur among yourselves. 6:44 No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him, and I will raise him up in the last day. 6:45 It is written in the prophets, ‘They will all be taught by God.’ Therefore everyone who hears from the Father, and has learned, comes to me. 6:46 Not that anyone has seen the Father, except he who is from God. He has seen the Father. 6:47 Most certainly, I tell you, he who believes in me has eternal life. 6:48 I am the bread of life. 6:49 Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died. 6:50 This is the bread which comes down out of heaven, that anyone may eat of it and not die. 6:51 I am the living bread which came down out of heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. Yes, the bread which I will give for the life of the world is my flesh.”

6:52 The Jews therefore contended with one another, saying, “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?”

6:53 Jesus therefore said to them, “Most certainly I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you don’t have life in yourselves. 6:54 He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. 6:55 For my flesh is food indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. 6:56 He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood lives in me, and I in him. 6:57 As the living Father sent me, and I live because of the Father; so he who feeds on me, he will also live because of me. 6:58 This is the bread which came down out of heaven—not as our fathers ate the manna, and died. He who eats this bread will live forever.” 6:59 He said these things in the synagogue, as he taught in Capernaum.

6:60 Therefore many of his disciples, when they heard this, said, “This is a hard saying! Who can listen to it?”

6:61 But Jesus knowing in himself that his disciples murmured at this, said to them, “Does this cause you to stumble? 6:62 Then what if you would see the Son of Man ascending to where he was before? 6:63 It is the spirit who gives life. The flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and are life. 6:64 But there are some of you who don’t believe.” For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were who didn’t believe, and who it was who would betray him. 6:65 He said, “For this cause have I said to you that no one can come to me, unless it is given to him by my Father.”

6:66 At this, many of his disciples went back, and walked no more with him. 6:67 Jesus said therefore to the twelve, “You don’t also want to go away, do you?”

6:68 Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom would we go? You have the words of eternal life. 6:69 We have come to believe and know that you are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”

6:70 Jesus answered them, “Didn’t I choose you, the twelve, and one of you is a devil?” 6:71 Now he spoke of Judas, the son of Simon Iscariot, for it was he who would betray him, being one of the twelve.

World English Bible - (WEB) - Public Domain

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Posted 14 October 2008 - 10:36 AM

14 October 2008

2 Chronicles 3; 4
Ezekiel 40
John 6

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Posted 15 October 2009 - 12:03 AM

14 October 2009

2 Chronicles 3; 4
Ezekiel 40
John 6

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Posted 06 March 2011 - 05:54 AM

14 October 2010

2 Chronicles 3; 4
Ezekiel 40
John 6

"THIS IS TRULY THE PROPHET"

Our readings in John 6 tell us of when thousands of people personally experienced a great miracle, it is the one miracle recorded in all four gospels; it is when Jesus miraculously fed thousands of people. It is interesting how people can see miracles, such as healings, even a dead man raised, things that happen to other people, but when they personally experience something completely miraculous, it makes a greater impression.

The text says that “when they had seen this sign” they said, “This is truly the prophet who is to come into the world” [John 6:14] But what happened next!! They then “were about to come and take him by force and make him King” [John 6:15]. What did Jesus do?

“He departed again to a mountain by himself alone” Why did he do this? He was, in effect, running away from them. Remember that one of the temptations in the wilderness was also an invitation to Him to take rulership over all the kingdoms of the world [Matthew 4:8-9]. He was to answer Pilate’s question, “So you are a king?” by saying, “For this purpose I was born and for this purpose I have come into the world” [John 18:37]

What a temptation for him to respond and to be immediately proclaimed king. His Father had given him unlimited power [John 3:34], so he could immediately bring total justice, etc into the world. But this would be doing the right thing the wrong way! That is one of the more subtle and dangerous temptations we have in life.

Those who think Jesus is God himself cannot comprehend how Jesus was really tempted; but it says in Hebrews that our High Priest (Jesus) was “one who in every respect has been tempted as we are” [Hebrews 4:15] The Apostle Paul despite all his dedication in serving Christ admits, “I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members” [Romans 7:23] It is evident Jesus was tempted in the same way, but “the law of sin” never won. Instead he won and, as a result was “made perfect” [Hebrews 5:9]

Matthew’s account of his temptation in the wilderness was known to him most probably by being told of it by Jesus, and Jesus chose to describe his inner temptation in the form of a parable. So let us try to follow the example of Jesus and try to run away from temptation by doing something else, thinking of something else, or by calling a Bible passage to mind as Jesus did in the wilderness temptations, then we will be truly followers of “the prophet”.
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- DC

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Posted 14 October 2011 - 04:10 AM

14 October 2011

2 Chronicles 3; 4
Ezekiel 40
John 6

"... AND YET YOU DO NOT BELIEVE"

What a fascinating chapter is John 6, but what caught our attention today was how, when the people did not get the answers and actions they requested from Jesus, so many turned away. The first 15 verses describe the miracle of feeding the 5,000. It excited the crowd and they were annoyed when they found he had slipped away from them. The disciples also were on their own and they experienced a storm on the lake and saw Jesus walking on the water in the storm “and they were frightened” [John 6:19] and he said, “It is I” and “they were glad to take him into the boat and immediately the boat was at the land” [John 6:21]

Is there a potential comparison with his return to earth: time when we are frightened by the chaos and “storms” in our lives in a world that is now in chaos? We noted “it was now dark” [John 6:17] as the disciples desperately rowed. Will anxious believers in this world’s darkness be immediately certain the return of Jesus is actually happening? Let us listen for his voice.

The crowds catch up with Jesus and he says to them, “you are seeking me not because you saw signs, but because you ate the fill of the loaves” [John 6:26]. They ask, “What must we do, to be doing the works of God?” [John 6:28]. They are more interested in doing miracles themselves and to have more miraculous “loaves and fishes” than listening to his words and “the food (for thought and action) that endures to eternal life.” [John 6:27]

They turn away from his comment, “This is the work of God that you believe in him whom God has sent.” [John 6:29]. Real belief leads to actions to show acceptance of that belief! They are not prepared to think through what he means – and the same happens today. Jesus says, “I am the bread of life … whoever believes in me shall never thirst …you have seen me and yet you do not believe” [John 6:36] Later “many of his disciples turned back and no longer walked with him.” [John 6:66] On Sunday we will read how Jesus said, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth …” [John 8:31]. Let us abide (live) with the words of Jesus and God in our hearts directing our actions.
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Posted 14 October 2012 - 05:12 AM

14 October 2012

2 Chronicles 3; 4
Ezekiel 40
John 6

"WHEN THEY HAD SEEN THIS SIGN"

Our readings in John 6 tell us of when thousands of people personally experienced a great miracle, it is the one miracle recorded in all four gospels; it is when Jesus miraculously fed thousands of people. It is interesting how people can see miracles, such as healings, even a dead man raised, things that happen to other people, but when they personally experience something completely miraculous, it makes a greater impression.

The text says that “when they had seen this sign” they said, “This is truly the prophet who is to come into the world” [John 6:14] But what happened next!! They then “were about to come and take him by force and make him King” [John 6:15]. What did Jesus do?

“He departed again to a mountain by himself alone” Why did he do this? He was, in effect, running away from them. Remember that one of the temptations in the wilderness was also an invitation to Him to take rulership over all the kingdoms of the world [Matthew 4:8-9]. He was to answer Pilate’s question, “So you are a king?” by saying, “For this purpose I was born and for this purpose I have come into the world” [John 18:37]

What a temptation for him to respond and to be immediately proclaimed king. His Father had given him unlimited power [John 3:34], so he could immediately bring total justice, etc into the world. But this would be doing the right thing the wrong way! That is one of the more subtle and dangerous temptations we have in life.

Those who think Jesus is God himself cannot comprehend how Jesus was really tempted; but it says in Hebrews that our High Priest (Jesus) was “one who in every respect has been tempted as we are” [Hebrews 4:15] The Apostle Paul despite all his dedication in serving Christ admits, “I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members” [Romans 7:23] It is evident Jesus was tempted in the same way, but “the law of sin” never won. Instead he won and, as a result was “made perfect” [Hebrews 5:9]

Matthew’s account of his temptation in the wilderness was known to him most probably by being told of it by Jesus, and Jesus chose to describe his inner temptation in the form of a parable. So let us try to follow the example of Jesus and try to run away from temptation by doing something else, thinking of something else, or by calling a Bible passage to mind as Jesus did in the wilderness temptations, then we will be truly followers of “the prophet”.
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- DC

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 09:16 AM

14 October 2013

2 Chronicles 3; 4
Ezekiel 40
John 6

WHEN JESUS RAN AWAY!

Our readings in John 6 tell us of when Jesus, in effect, ran away! Thousands of people had just personally experienced a great miracle, it is the one miracle recorded in all four gospels; the time when Jesus miraculously fed thousands of people.

People can see miracles, such as healings, even a dead man raised, things experienced by others, but when they personally experience something completely miraculous, it makes a greater impression on them. The text says that “when they had seen this sign” they said, “This is truly the prophet who is to come into the world” [John 6:14] and they then “were about to come and take him by force and make him King” [John 6:15].

The very next words we read are, “He departed again to a mountain by himself alone” Why did he do this? He was, in effect, running away from them. Remember that one of the temptations in the wilderness was also an invitation to Him to take rulership over all the kingdoms of the world [Matthew 4:8-9].

Recall also how he answered Pilate’s question, “So you are a king?” by saying, “For this purpose I was born and for this purpose I have come into the world” [John 18:37]

What a temptation is was then for him to respond to this opportunity to be immediately proclaimed king – His Father had given him unlimited power [John 3:34] and his destiny was to bring total justice to the world, in ruling over all.. But this would be doing the right thing the wrong way! This is an extreme example of the more subtle and dangerous temptations we have in life.

Those who think Jesus is God himself are unable to properly comprehend this; but recall the words in the letter to the Hebrews that our High Priest (Jesus) is “one who in every respect has been tempted as we are” [Hebrews 4:15]

The Apostle Paul, despite all his dedication in serving Christ admits, “I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members” [Romans 7:23] It is clear Jesus was tempted in the same way, but “the law of sin” never won.

In the gospel Matthew wrote, his Master’s temptations in the wilderness were most probably revealed to him through being told about them by Jesus, who described his inner temptation in the form of parables to illustrate for them and us how an intimate knowledge of what “is written” provides the impetus to turn away from temptation.

So let us follow the example of Jesus and aim to run away from temptations by doing something else, thinking of something else, or by calling a Bible passage to mind as Jesus did in his wilderness temptations – or, as we have just read, by 'running away' to a private place to pray.
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- DC

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Posted 14 October 2014 - 09:13 AM

14 October 2014
 
2 Chronicles 3; 4
Ezekiel 40
John 6  
 
“THIS IS THE WORK OF GOD”
            
How fascinating – in the sense of being utterly meaningful to the spiritual mind is the teaching of Jesus that John records in today’s 6th chapter of his gospel.  Jesus made a tremendous impact in feeding the multitude in the wilderness and this caused more and more to seek him.  We can imagine the way stories would spread. They finally found him on the other side of the lake; we can envisage how quickly a crowd gathered and what they were hoping to experience. 
            
Jesus says to them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, you are seeking me, not because you saw signs, but because you ate your fill of the loaves... " [John 6:26]   He then makes a vital point, "Do not work for the food that perishes, but for the food that endures to eternal life ..."  Is it clear to us what he means?  Of this food he says, "which the Son of Man will give to you." What "food" is this?
            
They are not really listening, as we would say today, their minds are on the wrong wavelength: they ask, "What must we do, to be doing the works of God?" [John 6:28]  They want to be able to do such miracles, and multiplying food themselves was probably on top of their agenda!   We see a modern equivalent with claims of healings, etc.; we have attended such - and found them most unconvincing, as do all those who have really soaked their minds in God's word. 
            
The next thing Jesus says is very significant.  He talks about "the food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you." But his words are not what they want to hear: do we only listen to or read what we want to know about?  Jesus then tells them, ""This is the work of God, that you believe in him whom he has sent." [John 6:29] Ponder those words.  We must ask ourselves a simple, yet vital question.  What is it to believe in something, someone? 
 
Jesus obviously. Means total belief - no reservations.  
            
We show whether we really believe something by what we then do - what our minds then focus upon.  We are convinced that God then responds to such a committed focus of mind and a wondrous pathway of life opens up before such - those who really believe.   We use the word "focus" - when we were young cameras did not have an 'automatic' focus - you had to very carefully adjust the lens to get a perfect picture.  It is the same with the 'focus' of our minds what they properly "look" at!          
 
Finally but most challenging of all, we  read and meditated deeply on John 6:40 "For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day."  Let us all do "the work of God" with all our hearts.
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- DC


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Posted 14 October 2015 - 05:09 AM

14 October 2015
 
2 Chronicles 3; 4
Ezekiel 40
John 6  
 
"THE WORDS ... I HAVE SPOKEN ... ARE SPIRIT AND LIFE"
            
We have some really challenging chapters today. First in 2 Chronicles 3; 4 we have the details of the Temple Solomon built – and all the gold that was used; it must have been completely awesome to go inside!  Sadly, few in the succeeding generations were affected in that way. This was because their sense of the reality of God – and his presence – became ritualized: it was no longer a place where they could draw near to God and sense his unseen presence all around them. Instead it became a place where the religious leaders could exalt themselves – instead of God. The way the Temple Herod built was used in the time of Jesus illustrated this. The parable Jesus told about 2 men in the Temple is very much to the point – see Luke 18:9-14.
            
We must ask ourselves: is it possible for the reading and knowledge of the Bible to lead to this attitude? The answer is ‘Yes’ – if our reading and developed knowledge of God’s word feeds our own ‘ego’ as it did the Pharisee..
            
In Ezekiel we began a sequence of 9 chapters that describes “the visions of God” [Ezekiel 40:2] that came to the prophet; visions in detail of the ultimate temple that will be built – in the kingdom age. 
            
Finally, the 71 verses in John 6 challenge us to correctly perceive the meaning of the teaching of Jesus.  We may wish he had spoken in plain English (or whatever our native language is)!  Jesus declares, "The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life." [John 6:63]
            
The form of words he uses is not given to us like a plate of food – ready to be eaten and digested!  If they were, our Bibles would soon end up on the shelf gathering dust!  
            
Those who wanted a 'ready to eat' meal are disillusioned!  He had said "whoever feeds on me, he also will live because of me." He had also said "my flesh is true food" [John 6:55] and that any who feed "on my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day." [John 6:54] How close are we now to “that day”?
            
Then in John 6:61 we read "Jesus, knowing in himself that his disciples were grumbling about this, said to them, 'Do you take offense at this?'" How many take "offense" at the Bible today? Yes, they do – and the result is the same as then – "after this many of his disciples turned back and no longer walked with him." [John 6:66]  Today, so few even begin to walk with him!
            
Those who continued with him realized more and more the wondrous truth of Jesus' saying, The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life."
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Posted 14 October 2016 - 11:16 AM

14 October 2016
 
2 Chronicles 3; 4
Ezekiel 40
John 6  
 
“SO WHOEVER FEEDS ON ME”
 
John 6 is one of the most thought challenging in the whole Bible. Jesus tells his disciples, “I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever.” [John 6:51]. The earlier part of the chapter had described the feeding of the five thousand in the wilderness (i.e. an uninhabited area); it is the only miracle recorded in all 4 gospels. And what a lesson Jesus now ‘draws’ for his disciple!. The miraculous provision of ‘heavenly’ bread symbolizes Jesus’ teaching. He had earlier told them, “"I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst.” [John 6:35] 
 
How few have found the way to avoid this find of hungering and thirsting today without realizing it: the ‘chaff’ tastes OK to those whose who have been brought up on it. 
 
The proof that we have found “the bread of life” is the ongoing effect that our reading and meditating, (with the resultant reality of our prayers), has on each one of us. Jesus very plainly says, “As the living Father sent me, and I live because of the Father, so whoever feeds on me, … will live because of me.
 
A key question we must answer is - how do we ‘feed’ on Jesus in a real spiritual sense? Jesus tells them! Look at John 6:63! “The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life.” 
 
The words of Jesus; and this chapter is a particularly challenging example, provide us with “spirit and life”. In contrast to the world offers us abundant fleshly experiences and then eternal death. 
 
Once again we realize there is no middle way, life is a choice between the “narrow” and the “wide” – Jesus told them [Matthew 7:13] People then, and ever since have faced this choice! The “wide” way today, seems wider than ever! Finally we note what happened – as a result of the words of Jesus?”
 
We read, “After this many of his disciples turned back and no longer walked with him.” [John 6:66] So many today do not even start to follow Jesus! And ourselves? Let us finish our thoughts today by jumping ahead to John 8. “Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life." [John 8:12] In following him, we must “feed” on him – as our main for our heart and mind diet every day.
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Posted 14 October 2017 - 12:14 AM

14 October 2017
 
2 Chronicles 3; 4
Ezekiel 40
John 6  
 
"... AND YET YOU DO NOT BELIEVE"
 
What a fascinating chapter is John 6, but what caught our attention today was how, when the people did not get the answers and actions they requested from Jesus, so many turned away. The first 15 verses describe the miracle of feeding the 5,000. It excited the crowd and they were annoyed when they found he had slipped away from them. 
 
The disciples also were on their own and they experienced a storm on the lake and saw Jesus walking on the water in the storm "and they were frightened" [John 6:19] and he said, "'It is I' and they were glad to take him into the boat and immediately the boat was at the land" [John 6:21]
 
Is there a potential comparison with his return to earth: time when we are frightened by the chaos and "storms" in our lives in a world that descends into chaos? We noted "it was now dark" [John 6:17] as the disciples desperately rowed. Will anxious believers in this world's darkness be immediately certain the return of Jesus is actually happening? Let us listen for his voice.
 
The crowds catch up with Jesus and he says to them, "you are seeking me not because you saw signs, but because you ate the fill of the loaves" [John 6:26]. They ask, "What must we do, to be doing the works of God?" [John 6:28]. They are more interested in doing miracles themselves and to have more miraculous "loaves and fishes" than listening to his words and "the food (for thought and action) that endures to eternal life." [John 6:27]
 
They turn away from his comment, "This is the work of God that you believe in him whom God has sent." [John 6:29]. Real belief leads to actions to show acceptance of that belief! The people then were not prepared to think through what he means – and the same happens today.
 
Jesus says, "I am the bread of life … whoever believes in me shall never thirst …you have seen me and yet you do not believe" [John 6:36]. Later "many of his disciples turned back and no longer walked with him" [John 6:66]. On Monday we will read how Jesus said, "If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth …" [John 8:31]. Let us abide (live) with the words of Jesus and God in our hearts directing our actions.
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