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27 September - 1 Chronicles 10; Ezekiel 23; Luke 20


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Posted 27 September 2007 - 10:59 AM

First Portion

1 Chronicles 10


10:1 Now the Philistines fought against Israel: and the men of Israel fled from before the Philistines, and fell down slain on Mount Gilboa. 10:2 The Philistines followed hard after Saul and after his sons; and the Philistines killed Jonathan, and Abinadab, and Malchishua, the sons of Saul. 10:3 The battle went hard against Saul, and the archers overtook him; and he was distressed by reason of the archers. 10:4 Then Saul said to his armor bearer, “Draw your sword, and thrust me through with it, lest these uncircumcised come and abuse me.”

But his armor bearer would not; for he was terrified. Therefore Saul took his sword, and fell on it. 10:5 When his armor bearer saw that Saul was dead, he likewise fell on his sword, and died. 10:6 So Saul died, and his three sons; and all his house died together. 10:7 When all the men of Israel who were in the valley saw that they fled, and that Saul and his sons were dead, they forsook their cities, and fled; and the Philistines came and lived in them. 10:8 It happened on the next day, when the Philistines came to strip the slain, that they found Saul and his sons fallen on Mount Gilboa. 10:9 They stripped him, and took his head, and his armor, and sent into the land of the Philistines all around, to carry the news to their idols, and to the people. 10:10 They put his armor in the house of their gods, and fastened his head in the house of Dagon. 10:11 When all Jabesh Gilead heard all that the Philistines had done to Saul, 10:12 all the valiant men arose, and took away the body of Saul, and the bodies of his sons, and brought them to Jabesh, and buried their bones under the oak in Jabesh, and fasted seven days. 10:13 So Saul died for his trespass which he committed against Yahweh, because of the word of Yahweh, which he didn’t keep; and also because he asked counsel of one who had a familiar spirit, to inquire, 10:14 and didn’t inquire of Yahweh: therefore he killed him, and turned the kingdom to David the son of Jesse.

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Posted 27 September 2007 - 11:00 AM

Second Portion

Ezekiel 23


23:1 The word of Yahweh came again to me, saying, 23:2 Son of man, there were two women, the daughters of one mother: 23:3 and they played the prostitute in Egypt; they played the prostitute in their youth; there were their breasts pressed, and there was handled the bosom of their virginity. 23:4 Their names were Oholah the elder, and Oholibah her sister: and they became mine, and they bore sons and daughters. As for their names, Samaria is Oholah, and Jerusalem Oholibah. 23:5 Oholah played the prostitute when she was mine; and she doted on her lovers, on the Assyrians her neighbors, 23:6 who were clothed with blue, governors and rulers, all of them desirable young men, horsemen riding on horses. 23:7 She bestowed her prostitution on them, the choicest men of Assyria all of them; and on whoever she doted, with all their idols she defiled herself. 23:8 Neither has she left her prostitution since the days of Egypt; for in her youth they lay with her, and they handled the bosom of her virginity; and they poured out their prostitution on her. 23:9 Therefore I delivered her into the hand of her lovers, into the hand of the Assyrians, on whom she doted. 23:10 These uncovered her nakedness; they took her sons and her daughters; and her they killed with the sword: and she became a byword among women; for they executed judgments on her. 23:11 Her sister Oholibah saw this, yet was she more corrupt in her doting than she, and in her prostitution which were more than the prostitution of her sister. 23:12 She doted on the Assyrians, governors and rulers, her neighbors, clothed most gorgeously, horsemen riding on horses, all of them desirable young men. 23:13 I saw that she was defiled; they both took one way. 23:14 She increased her prostitution; for she saw men portrayed on the wall, the images of the Chaldeans portrayed with vermilion, 23:15 dressed with girdles on their waists, with flowing turbans on their heads, all of them princes to look on, after the likeness of the Babylonians in Chaldea, the land of their birth. 23:16 As soon as she saw them she doted on them, and sent messengers to them into Chaldea. 23:17 The Babylonians came to her into the bed of love, and they defiled her with their prostitution, and she was polluted with them, and her soul was alienated from them. 23:18 So she uncovered her prostitution, and uncovered her nakedness: then my soul was alienated from her, like as my soul was alienated from her sister. 23:19 Yet she multiplied her prostitution, remembering the days of her youth, in which she had played the prostitute in the land of Egypt. 23:20 She doted on their paramours, whose flesh is as the flesh of donkeys, and whose issue is like the issue of horses. 23:21 Thus you called to memory the lewdness of your youth, in the handling of your bosom by the Egyptians for the breasts of your youth. 23:22 Therefore, Oholibah, thus says the Lord Yahweh: Behold, I will raise up your lovers against you, from whom your soul is alienated, and I will bring them against you on every side: 23:23 the Babylonians and all the Chaldeans, Pekod and Shoa and Koa, and all the Assyrians with them; desirable young men, governors and rulers all of them, princes and men of renown, all of them riding on horses. 23:24 They shall come against you with weapons, chariots, and wagons, and with a company of peoples; they shall set themselves against you with buckler and shield and helmet all around; and I will commit the judgment to them, and they shall judge you according to their judgments. 23:25 I will set my jealousy against you, and they shall deal with you in fury; they shall take away your nose and your ears; and your residue shall fall by the sword: they shall take your sons and your daughters; and your residue shall be devoured by the fire. 23:26 They shall also strip you of your clothes, and take away your beautiful jewels. 23:27 Thus will I make your lewdness to cease from you, and your prostitution brought from the land of Egypt; so that you shall not lift up your eyes to them, nor remember Egypt any more. 23:28 For thus says the Lord Yahweh: Behold, I will deliver you into the hand of them whom you hate, into the hand of them from whom your soul is alienated; 23:29 and they shall deal with you in hatred, and shall take away all your labor, and shall leave you naked and bare; and the nakedness of your prostitution shall be uncovered, both your lewdness and your prostitution. 23:30 These things shall be done to you, because you have played the prostitute after the nations, and because you are polluted with their idols. 23:31 You have walked in the way of your sister; therefore will I give her cup into your hand. 23:32 Thus says the Lord Yahweh: You will drink of your sister’s cup, which is deep and large; you will be ridiculed and held in derision; it contains much. 23:33 You shall be filled with drunkenness and sorrow, with the cup of astonishment and desolation, with the cup of your sister Samaria. 23:34 You shall even drink it and drain it out, and you shall gnaw the broken pieces of it, and shall tear your breasts; for I have spoken it, says the Lord Yahweh. 23:35 Therefore thus says the Lord Yahweh: Because you have forgotten me, and cast me behind your back, therefore you also bear your lewdness and your prostitution. 23:36 Yahweh said moreover to me: Son of man, will you judge Oholah and Oholibah? then declare to them their abominations. 23:37 For they have committed adultery, and blood is in their hands; and with their idols have they committed adultery; and they have also caused their sons, whom they bore to me, to pass through the fire to them to be devoured. 23:38 Moreover this they have done to me: they have defiled my sanctuary in the same day, and have profaned my Sabbaths. 23:39 For when they had slain their children to their idols, then they came the same day into my sanctuary to profane it; and behold, thus have they done in the midst of my house. 23:40 Furthermore you have sent for men who come from far, to whom a messenger was sent, and behold, they came; for whom you did wash yourself, paint your eyes, and decorate yourself with ornaments, 23:41 and sit on a stately bed, with a table prepared before it, whereupon you set my incense and my oil. 23:42 The voice of a multitude being at ease was with her: and with men of the common sort were brought drunkards from the wilderness; and they put bracelets on their hands twain, and beautiful crowns on their heads. 23:43 Then I said of her who was old in adulteries, Now will they play the prostitute with her, and she with them. 23:44 They went in to her, as they go in to a prostitute: so went they in to Oholah and to Oholibah, the lewd women. 23:45 Righteous men, they shall judge them with the judgment of adulteresses, and with the judgment of women who shed blood; because they are adulteresses, and blood is in their hands. 23:46 For thus says the Lord Yahweh: I will bring up a company against them, and will give them to be tossed back and forth and robbed. 23:47 The company shall stone them with stones, and dispatch them with their swords; they shall kill their sons and their daughters, and burn up their houses with fire. 23:48 Thus will I cause lewdness to cease out of the land, that all women may be taught not to do after your lewdness. 23:49 They shall recompense your lewdness on you, and you shall bear the sins of your idols; and you shall know that I am the Lord Yahweh.

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Posted 27 September 2007 - 11:03 AM

Third Portion

Luke 20


20:1 It happened on one of those days, as he was teaching the people in the temple and preaching the Good News, that the priests and scribes came to him with the elders. 20:2 They asked him, “Tell us: by what authority do you do these things? Or who is giving you this authority?”

20:3 He answered them, “I also will ask you one question. Tell me: 20:4 the baptism of John, was it from heaven, or from men?”

20:5 They reasoned with themselves, saying, “If we say, ‘From heaven,’ he will say, ‘Why didn’t you believe him?’ 20:6 But if we say, ‘From men,’ all the people will stone us, for they are persuaded that John was a prophet.” 20:7 They answered that they didn’t know where it was from.

20:8 Jesus said to them, “Neither will I tell you by what authority I do these things.”

20:9 He began to tell the people this parable. “A man planted a vineyard, and rented it out to some farmers, and went into another country for a long time. 20:10 At the proper season, he sent a servant to the farmers to collect his share of the fruit of the vineyard. But the farmers beat him, and sent him away empty. 20:11 He sent yet another servant, and they also beat him, and treated him shamefully, and sent him away empty. 20:12 He sent yet a third, and they also wounded him, and threw him out. 20:13 The lord of the vineyard said, ‘What shall I do? I will send my beloved son. It may be that seeing him, they will respect him.’

20:14 “But when the farmers saw him, they reasoned among themselves, saying, ‘This is the heir. Come, let’s kill him, that the inheritance may be ours.’ 20:15 They threw him out of the vineyard, and killed him. What therefore will the lord of the vineyard do to them? 20:16 He will come and destroy these farmers, and will give the vineyard to others.”

When they heard it, they said, “May it never be!”

20:17 But he looked at them, and said, “Then what is this that is written,

‘The stone which the builders rejected,
the same was made the chief cornerstone?’
20:18 Everyone who falls on that stone will be broken to pieces,
but it will crush whomever it falls on to dust.”

20:19 The chief priests and the scribes sought to lay hands on him that very hour, but they feared the people—for they knew he had spoken this parable against them. 20:20 They watched him, and sent out spies, who pretended to be righteous, that they might trap him in something he said, so as to deliver him up to the power and authority of the governor. 20:21 They asked him, “Teacher, we know that you say and teach what is right, and aren’t partial to anyone, but truly teach the way of God. 20:22 Is it lawful for us to pay taxes to Caesar, or not?”

20:23 But he perceived their craftiness, and said to them, “Why do you test me? 20:24 Show me a denarius. Whose image and inscription are on it?”

They answered, “Caesar’s.”

20:25 He said to them, “Then give to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.”

20:26 They weren’t able to trap him in his words before the people. They marveled at his answer, and were silent. 20:27 Some of the Sadducees came to him, those who deny that there is a resurrection. 20:28 They asked him, “Teacher, Moses wrote to us that if a man’s brother dies having a wife, and he is childless, his brother should take the wife, and raise up children for his brother. 20:29 There were therefore seven brothers. The first took a wife, and died childless. 20:30 The second took her as wife, and he died childless. 20:31 The third took her, and likewise the seven all left no children, and died. 20:32 Afterward the woman also died. 20:33 Therefore in the resurrection whose wife of them will she be? For the seven had her as a wife.”

20:34 Jesus said to them, “The children of this age marry, and are given in marriage. 20:35 But those who are considered worthy to attain to that age and the resurrection from the dead, neither marry, nor are given in marriage. 20:36 For they can’t die any more, for they are like the angels, and are children of God, being children of the resurrection. 20:37 But that the dead are raised, even Moses showed at the bush, when he called the Lord ‘The God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.’* 20:38 Now he is not the God of the dead, but of the living, for all are alive to him.”

20:39 Some of the scribes answered, “Teacher, you speak well.” 20:40 They didn’t dare to ask him any more questions.

20:41 He said to them, “Why do they say that the Christ is David’s son? 20:42 David himself says in the book of Psalms,

‘The Lord said to my Lord,
“Sit at my right hand,
20:43 until I make your enemies the footstool of your feet.”’

20:44 “David therefore calls him Lord, so how is he his son?”

20:45 In the hearing of all the people, he said to his disciples, 20:46 “Beware of the scribes, who like to walk in long robes, and love greetings in the marketplaces, the best seats in the synagogues, and the best places at feasts; 20:47 who devour widows’ houses, and for a pretense make long prayers: these will receive greater condemnation.”

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Posted 27 September 2008 - 11:36 AM

27 September 2008

1 Chronicles 10
Ezekiel 23
Luke 20

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Posted 27 September 2009 - 12:18 AM

27 September 2009

1 Chronicles 10
Ezekiel 23
Luke 20

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Posted 06 March 2011 - 04:50 AM

27 September 2010

1 Chronicles 10
Ezekiel 23
Luke 20

“SO ALL ISRAEL WAS RECORDED IN GENEALOGIES”

One of the most boring parts of the Bible to read are the lists of names in genealogies. We completed reading yesterday the first 9 chapters of 1 Chronicles which are full of such lists, tracing lines of descent. Ch. 9 starts with the words “So all Israel was recorded in genealogies.” Why were all these records kept? The significance of keeping them became evident when the Jews returned from captivity for some could not prove their line of descent “whether they belonged to Israel.” [Ezra 2:59].

Being an Israelite brought special privileges and today, belonging to a nation is important. After World War 2 when so many millions died (20 million it is said) there were many Stateless people, especially parentless youngsters when people are “stateless” – it is a real problem. We see the desire of some today to be accepted as members of another nation, Australia is very much favoured.

Now our key question is, is knowing your genealogy when you are “in Christ” of any value? The answer is clearly, ‘No.’ When Jesus Christ becomes our brother, spiritually, then his father becomes our father – and that is the only genealogy that counts. And does it count! Nothing in our lives can count for more!

We note however that the early church had those he still saw importance in knowing lines of descent. Paul mentioned this in writing to Timothy saying “to teach” that they should not “devote themselves to myths and endless genealogies” [1 Timothy 1:3,4]. He wrote the same to Titus saying he should teach believers to “avoid controversies, genealogies … they are unprofitable and worthless” [Titus 3:9] Today it has become something of a fad in some countries to know your line of descent and we are bombarded by organisations offering to find this out – at a price of course. Let us concentrate on the relationship that matters above all else.
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Posted 27 September 2011 - 04:35 AM

27 September 2011

1 Chronicles 10
Ezekiel 23
Luke 20

"THOSE WHO ARE CONSIDERED WORTHY"

We read how those who deny there is a resurrection come to Jesus with a hypothetical story about a woman who had had seven husbands, but no children. They ask him who would be her husband in the resurrection. Jesus said to them, “those who are considered worthy to attain to that age and to the resurrection from the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage, for they cannot die anymore, because they are equal to angels and are sons of God, being sons of the resurrection.” [Luke 20:35-36]

Our first thought about this passage was that, in one sense, no one will be worthy. No one can “attain to that age” as a result of their way of life. First, we have to be worthy to receive his grace and as a result attain to the wondrous time of God’s kingdom on this earth – to be established at the time of the resurrection. The second thought was about what the Sadducees believed about a future life – but this seems impossible to know. Possibly they had been influenced in the Greek concept of a continuing existence of the soul in spiritual realms – just as in later centuries a large part of the Church did – resulting in a contradiction with the Bible’s testimony of a resurrection and judgement when Christ comes.

History shows that every generation has had those who follow their own imagination in what they decide to believe – believing what they want to believe! But “those who are considered worthy” by God will have been most careful to follow God’s words and ways; this is the reason we refer to different parts of the Bible to support every point we make.

We note Paul’s commendation of believers in the 2nd letter he wrote to the Thessalonians. We “give thanks to God for you … because your faith is growing abundantly, and the love of every one of you for one another is increasing. Therefore we ourselves boast about … your steadfastness of faith … that you may be considered worthy of the kingdom of God …” [2 Thessalonians 1:3-5] The believers at Thessalonica were enduring many difficulties – and their endurance was an essential part of being “considered worthy”. May we follow their example.
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Posted 27 September 2012 - 09:06 AM

27 September 2012

1 Chronicles 10
Ezekiel 23
Luke 20

"WHO PRETENDED TO BE SINCERE"

What a lot of pretense there is in the world. So many create an ‘image’ to project before others! While politicians are probably the best example of this, let us not practice any self-deception, for such is our own human nature; the spirit of the age cannot help but have some influence on us.

The ‘medicine’ to correct this is the daily reading of the word of God. But like the medicine for physical health it depends how and what we take! Do we only read the parts we like or that we feel are relevant to our own perceived needs and interests? Our reading must include meditation on those parts which illustrate how deceptive human beings can be toward each other – and take special note of the antidote ‘medicine’, such as in the book of Proverbs.

Today’s reading in Luke 20 is about the insincerity of “the scribes and the chief priests” [Luke 20:19] Wary of the potential reaction of the people who thronged about Jesus, “they watched and sent spies , who pretended to be sincere that they might catch him in something he said and so deliver him up to the authority and jurisdiction of the governor.” [Luke 20:20]

In their insincerity they said something they did not really believe! They said, “Teacher we know that you speak and teach rightly, and show no partiality, but truly teach the way of God.” [Luke 20:21] Can we say things which are “true” and yet say them with an insincere mind? Can we, as many others, put on a “front” for some purpose to gain some advantage; quite often it is a material advantage? Sadly we have sensed that this sometimes happens in countries in which we are doing missionary work – but let us not deceive ourselves that it never happens here.

These wily men came to Jesus with what they thought was a clever question, “Is it lawful to give tribute to Caesar or not?” [Luke 20:22] and the verses which follow show how he silenced them with his answer! But let us ponder his answer ourselves and ask ourselves the question – ‘Are we rendering to God the things that are Gods?’

What do we have that belongs to God? Do not we ourselves belong to God? Paul told the Corinthians, “You were bought with a price” [1 Corinthians 6:20] and that price was the blood of God’s only Son.

Let us realise the position we are in as a result! “We are God’s fellow workers” [1 Corinthians 3:9] and we should more and more reflect the sincerity and character of Christ as we “work” for Christ and the Father and reveal them in our own small and humble ways to those around us; the more they sense our sincerity the more at least some will listen..
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Posted 27 September 2013 - 06:49 AM

27 September 2013

1 Chronicles 10
Ezekiel 23
Luke 20

“THOSE WHO DENY THAT …”

We have 3 chapters today that teach valuable lessons. 1 Chronicles 10 tells us that “Saul died for his breach of faith. He broke faith with the LORD …” [1 Chronicles 10:13] in not keeping his commandments, a lesson for all those who have committed themselves to serve the LORD.

“The word of the LORD came to me” says Ezekiel [Ezekiel 23:1] and he receives a parable that pictures God’s disgust at the spiritual adultery of the nation. The LORD says to them, “Because you have forgotten me and cast me behind your back you yourself must bear the consequences …” [Ezekiel 23:35] And what consequences does today’s world face for doing this!?

In our chapter in Luke [Luke 20] we see how “there came to him (Jesus) … those who deny that there is a resurrection” [Luke 20:27] as yet another example of those who believe what they want to believe and serve God on their own terms as Saul and nearly all the people in Ezekiel’s day had done. We note how Jesus responded to these deniers with a declaration of what is true, he “said to them, ‘The sons of this age marry and are given in marriage, but those who are considered worthy to attain to that age and to the resurrection from the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage, for they cannot die anymore because they are equal to the angels and are sons of God being sons (and daughters Footnote) of the resurrection” [Luke 20:36]

Jesus then says [Luke 20:37] that even the writings of “Moses showed (this), in the passage about the burning bush, where he calls the Lord the God of Abraham and the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob” (see Exodus 3:6). God was not proclaiming himself to be the God of the dead who have gone into oblivion for ever.

God transcends time, he is from everlasting to everlasting; the prayer/Psalm of Moses states this, “Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever you had formed the earth and the world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God.” [Psalm 90:2]

Oh, how incredible is the wonder of knowing and having a real everlasting relationship with God! Saul failed, the people of Israel’s time failed, the Sadducees failed, it seems nearly everyone today is failing – make sure you do not fail; feeding your mind of God’s word every day is an essential ingredient.
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Posted 27 September 2014 - 03:45 PM

27 September 2014
 
1 Chronicles 10
Ezekiel 23
Luke 20 
 
"OHOLAH AND OHOLIBAH"
             
Our chapter in Ezekiel [23] starts with the prophet saying, “The word of the LORD came to me, ”Son of man, there were two women, the daughters of one mother.  They played the whore in Egypt ... "  [Ezekiel 23:1-3] A graphic parable unfolds of the nation after it struggled to unlearn the decadence of life in Egypt.  The 2 women, Oholah and Oholibah,  represent the 2 nations which the Israelites split into after the time of David and Solomon and the glory of the Temple. 
            
This parable, judging by the start of the chapter that follows, was given to Ezekiel less than 2 years before Jerusalem fell and the Temple was destroyed and nearly all the remainder of the people were taken into captivity.  What would the people make of it?  Ezekiel obviously wrote it down and it was circulated.  It is a blunt portrayal of the total spiritual unfaithfulness to the true God that had come to exist - and was enjoyed!  
            
The meaning of the parable is plainly stated in Ezekiel 23:35 "thus says the Lord GOD: Because you have forgotten me and cast me behind your back, you yourself must bear the consequences of your lewdness and whoring ..."  Ezekiel is told to "declare to them their abominations" [Ezekiel 23:36]   We wonder how the people reacted?  
 
We see a close comparison with attitudes today - and how God's word is totally ignored.  Some of God's words in this chapter are so applicable to today, "the sound of a carefree multitude" Ezekiel 23:42]  They are told God's actions will , " ... make them an object of terror and a plunder ... Thus will I put an end to lewdness ... and you shall bear the penalty for your sinful idolatry, and you shall know that I am the Lord GOD." [Ezekiel 23:46,49]
            
And our world today "shall know" that there is a God, for it abounds with parallels to the godless behaviour in Ezekiel's time.  We see how Jesus draws a parallel lesson in today's 20th chapter of Luke.  Jesus is "the stone that the builders rejected" but  'has become the cornerstone'." [Luke 20:17]  Let us make Jesus "the cornerstone" of our life, and how much will we all need a foundation cornerstone when, as we will read next month in Daniel, the vision of a stone (representing Jesus) strikes the image of human kingdoms on the feet, destroying them all to create God's kingdom, "and it shall stand for ever" [Daniel 2:31-44]  May we so live now that, by his grace, we will be there.
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Posted 27 September 2015 - 03:26 AM

27 September 2015
 
1 Chronicles 10
Ezekiel 23
Luke 20 
 
"THOSE WHO ARE CONSIDERED WORTHY"                                                                                           
            
We read how those who deny there is a resurrection came to Jesus with a hypothetical story about a woman who had had seven husbands, but no children.  They asked him who would be her husband in the resurrection.  
            
Jesus said to them, “those who are considered worthy to attain to that age and to the resurrection from the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage, for they cannot die anymore, because they are equal to angels and are sons of God, being sons of the resurrection.” [Luke 20:35-36] 
             
Our first thought about this passage was that, in one sense, no one will be worthy.  No one can “attain to that age” as a result of their way of life.  First, we have to be worthy to receive his grace and as a result attain to the wondrous time of God’s kingdom on this earth – to be established at the time of the resurrection.  
            
Our second thought was about what the Sadducees believed about a future life – but this seems impossible to determine:  possibly they had been influenced in the Greek concept of a continuing existence of the soul in spiritual realms.  This happened in later centuries when a large part of the Church believed this, especially the R.C’s: this resulted in a contradiction of the Bible’s testimony that there will be a resurrection and judgement when Christ comes. 
            
History shows that every generation has had those who follow their own imagination – believing what they want to believe!  But “those who are considered worthy” by God - will be those who have been most careful to follow God’s word in what they believe – convictions of heart shown by both their words and actions. 
            
We note Paul’s commendation of believers in the 2nd letter he wrote to the Thessalonians. We “give thanks to God for you … because your faith is growing abundantly, and the love of every one of you for one another is increasing.  Therefore we ourselves boast about … your steadfastness of faith … that you may be considered worthy of the kingdom of God …” [2 Thessalonians 1:3-5]  The believers at Thessalonica were enduring many difficulties – and their endurance was an essential part of being “considered worthy”.  Are we going to have a test of endurance?  True believers, such as in Iran, are already having such a test.
            
Tomorrows chapter in Luke [Luke 21], records Jesus’ words forecasting a time when there will be “distress of nations in perplexity … people fainting with fear and with foreboding of what is coming on the world. For the powers of the heavens will be shaken’ And  then they will see the Son of Man coming …” 
            
How close are we to that time? There is increasing “perplexity … fear and foreboding” about the future, let us make every effort to possess the “full assurance of faith” and be “considered worthy.”  
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Posted 28 September 2016 - 12:02 PM

27 September 2016
 
1 Chronicles 10
Ezekiel 23
Luke 20  
 
“YOU YOURSELVES MUST BEAR THE CONSEQUENCES”
 
1 Chronicles 10 describes how Saul bore ‘the consequences’ because “he did not seek guidance from the LORD.” [1 Chronicles 10:14] The same message emerges from the distasteful parable in Ezekiel 23. At the climax of this ‘ugly’ parable of, “the Lord GOD” says, “… Because you have forgotten me and cast me behind your back, you yourselves must bear the consequences …” [Ezekiel 23:35]
 
As we have read today’s chapter in the gospel of Luke we saw the parable of Jesus giving warning of the same consequences for the religious leaders who were rejecting him.
 
Jesus tells the parable of the vineyard and the failure of the tenants to whom it had been let out – and how, in the end, they kill the son of the owner saying, 'This is the heir. Let us kill him, so that the inheritance may be ours.' [Luke 20:14] They were to “bear the consequences …” for doing this! Thus the nation of Israel was destroyed – the generation that had rejected Jesus.
 
What do we see today – what is the scene in the whole world? God’s word has been made available in every language over the last 100 years – and in some cases, much longer. Most of today’s generation have turned their back on God’s message!
 
The great majority are now denying that there even is a God, a great Creator who has given them his Son to believe and follow as the only way to be “considered worthy to attain to that age and to the resurrection from the dead” [Luke 20:35]. This is the point Jesus made to “those who deny that there is a resurrection” [Luke 20:27]
 
“Those who deny” the wonder of what is revealed in God’s word “must bear the consequences” There are awesome “consequences” to come, as we will find – and fear - in Luke’s chapter tomorrow for “those who deny” the truths revealed in God’s word.
 
And those who do not deny them – must wholeheartedly accept them – there is no middle way.
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- DC


#13 Librarian

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Posted 28 September 2017 - 03:06 AM

27 September 2017

1 Chronicles 10
Ezekiel 23
Luke 20

“FROM EVERLASTING TO EVERLASTING …”

We have 3 chapters today that teach valuable lessons. 1 Chronicles 10 tells us that “Saul died for his breach of faith. He broke faith with the LORD …” [1 Chronicles 10:13] in not keeping his commandments, a lesson for all those who have committed themselves to serve the LORD.

“The word of the LORD came to me” says Ezekiel [Ezekiel 23:1] and he receives a parable that pictures God’s disgust at the spiritual adultery of the nation. The LORD says to them, “Because you have forgotten me and cast me behind your back you yourself must bear the consequences …” [Ezekiel 23:35] And what consequences does today’s world face for doing this!?

In our chapter in Luke [Luke 20] we see how “there came to him (Jesus) … those who deny that there is a resurrection” [Luke 20:27] as yet another example of those who believe what they want to believe and serve God on their own terms as Saul and nearly all the people in Ezekiel’s day had done. We note how Jesus responded to these deniers with a declaration of what is true, he “said to them, ‘The sons of this age marry and are given in marriage, but those who are considered worthy to attain to that age and to the resurrection from the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage, for they cannot die anymore because they are equal to the angels and are sons of God being sons (and daughters Footnote) of the resurrection” [Luke 20:36]

Jesus then says [Luke 20:37] that even the writings of “Moses showed (this), in the passage about the burning bush, where he calls the Lord the God of Abraham and the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob” (see Exodus 3:6). God was not proclaiming himself to be the God of the dead who have gone into oblivion for ever.

God transcends time, he is from everlasting to everlasting; the prayer/Psalm of Moses states this, “Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever you had formed the earth and the world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God.” [Psalm 90:2]

Oh, how incredible is the wonder of knowing and having a real everlasting relationship with God! Saul failed, the people of Israel’s time failed, the Sadducees failed, it seems nearly everyone today is failing – make sure you do not fail; feeding your mind of God’s word every day is an essential ingredient.
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- DC






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