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09 October - 1 Chronicles 26; Ezekiel 35; Philippians 3; 4


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Posted 09 October 2007 - 10:51 AM

First Portion

1 Chronicles 26


26:1 For the divisions of the doorkeepers: of the Korahites, Meshelemiah the son of Kore, of the sons of Asaph. 26:2 Meshelemiah had sons: Zechariah the firstborn, Jediael the second, Zebadiah the third, Jathniel the fourth, 26:3 Elam the fifth, Jehohanan the sixth, Eliehoenai the seventh. 26:4 Obed-Edom had sons: Shemaiah the firstborn, Jehozabad the second, Joah the third, and Sacar the fourth, and Nethanel the fifth, 26:5 Ammiel the sixth, Issachar the seventh, Peullethai the eighth; for God blessed him. 26:6 Also to Shemaiah his son were sons born, who ruled over the house of their father; for they were mighty men of valor. 26:7 The sons of Shemaiah: Othni, and Rephael, and Obed, Elzabad, whose brothers were valiant men, Elihu, and Semachiah. 26:8 All these were of the sons of Obed-Edom: they and their sons and their brothers, able men in strength for the service; sixty-two of Obed-Edom. 26:9 Meshelemiah had sons and brothers, valiant men, eighteen. 26:10 Also Hosah, of the children of Merari, had sons: Shimri the chief, (for though he was not the firstborn, yet his father made him chief), 26:11 Hilkiah the second, Tebaliah the third, Zechariah the fourth: all the sons and brothers of Hosah were thirteen. 26:12 Of these were the divisions of the doorkeepers, even of the chief men, having offices like their brothers, to minister in the house of Yahweh. 26:13 They cast lots, the small as well as the great, according to their fathers’ houses, for every gate. 26:14 The lot eastward fell to Shelemiah. Then for Zechariah his son, a wise counselor, they cast lots; and his lot came out northward. 26:15 To Obed-Edom southward; and to his sons the storehouse. 26:16 To Shuppim and Hosah westward, by the gate of Shallecheth, at the causeway that goes up, watch against watch. 26:17 Eastward were six Levites, northward four a day, southward four a day, and for the storehouse two and two. 26:18 For Parbar westward, four at the causeway, and two at Parbar. 26:19 These were the divisions of the doorkeepers; of the sons of the Korahites, and of the sons of Merari. 26:20 Of the Levites, Ahijah was over the treasures of the house of God, and over the treasures of the dedicated things. 26:21 The sons of Ladan, the sons of the Gershonites belonging to Ladan, the heads of the fathers’ households belonging to Ladan the Gershonite: Jehieli. 26:22 The sons of Jehieli: Zetham, and Joel his brother, over the treasures of the house of Yahweh. 26:23 Of the Amramites, of the Izharites, of the Hebronites, of the Uzzielites: 26:24 and Shebuel the son of Gershom, the son of Moses, was ruler over the treasures. 26:25 His brothers: of Eliezer, Rehabiah his son, and Jeshaiah his son, and Joram his son, and Zichri his son, and Shelomoth his son. 26:26 This Shelomoth and his brothers were over all the treasures of the dedicated things, which David the king, and the heads of the fathers’ households, the captains over thousands and hundreds, and the captains of the army, had dedicated. 26:27 They dedicated some of the spoil won in battles to repair the house of Yahweh. 26:28 All that Samuel the seer, and Saul the son of Kish, and Abner the son of Ner, and Joab the son of Zeruiah, had dedicated, whoever had dedicated anything, it was under the hand of Shelomoth, and of his brothers. 26:29 Of the Izharites, Chenaniah and his sons were for the outward business over Israel, for officers and judges. 26:30 Of the Hebronites, Hashabiah and his brothers, men of valor, one thousand seven hundred, had the oversight of Israel beyond the Jordan westward, for all the business of Yahweh, and for the service of the king. 26:31 Of the Hebronites was Jerijah the chief, even of the Hebronites, according to their generations by fathers’ households. In the fortieth year of the reign of David they were sought for, and there were found among them mighty men of valor at Jazer of Gilead. 26:32 His brothers, men of valor, were two thousand seven hundred, heads of fathers’ households, whom king David made overseers over the Reubenites, and the Gadites, and the half-tribe of the Manassites, for every matter pertaining to God, and for the affairs of the king.

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Posted 09 October 2007 - 10:52 AM

Second Portion

Ezekiel 35


35:1 Moreover the word of Yahweh came to me, saying, 35:2 Son of man, set your face against Mount Seir, and prophesy against it, 35:3 and tell it, Thus says the Lord Yahweh: Behold, I am against you, Mount Seir, and I will stretch out my hand against you, and I will make you a desolation and an astonishment. 35:4 I will lay your cities waste, and you shall be desolate; and you shall know that I am Yahweh. 35:5 Because you have had a perpetual enmity, and have given over the children of Israel to the power of the sword in the time of their calamity, in the time of the iniquity of the end; 35:6 therefore, as I live, says the Lord Yahweh, I will prepare you for blood, and blood shall pursue you: since you have not hated blood, therefore blood shall pursue you. 35:7 Thus will I make Mount Seir an astonishment and a desolation; and I will cut off from it him who passes through and him who returns. 35:8 I will fill its mountains with its slain: in your hills and in your valleys and in all your watercourses shall they fall who are slain with the sword. 35:9 I will make you a perpetual desolation, and your cities shall not be inhabited; and you shall know that I am Yahweh. 35:10 Because you have said, These two nations and these two countries shall be mine, and we will possess it; whereas Yahweh was there: 35:11 therefore, as I live, says the Lord Yahweh, I will do according to your anger, and according to your envy which you have shown out of your hatred against them; and I will make myself known among them, when I shall judge you. 35:12 You shall know that I, Yahweh, have heard all your insults which you have spoken against the mountains of Israel, saying, They are laid desolate, they have been given us to devour. 35:13 You have magnified yourselves against me with your mouth, and have multiplied your words against me: I have heard it. 35:14 Thus says the Lord Yahweh: When the whole earth rejoices, I will make you desolate. 35:15 As you rejoiced over the inheritance of the house of Israel, because it was desolate, so will I do to you: you shall be desolate, Mount Seir, and all Edom, even all of it; and they shall know that I am Yahweh.

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Posted 09 October 2007 - 10:53 AM

Third Portion

Philippians 3; 4


3:1 Finally, my brothers, rejoice in the Lord. To write the same things to you, to me indeed is not tiresome, but for you it is safe. 3:2 Beware of the dogs, beware of the evil workers, beware of the false circumcision. 3:3 For we are the circumcision, who worship God in the Spirit, and rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh; 3:4 though I myself might have confidence even in the flesh. If any other man thinks that he has confidence in the flesh, I yet more: 3:5 circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews; concerning the law, a Pharisee; 3:6 concerning zeal, persecuting the assembly; concerning the righteousness which is in the law, found blameless.

3:7 However, what things were gain to me, these have I counted loss for Christ. 3:8 Yes most certainly, and I count all things to be loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus, my Lord, for whom I suffered the loss of all things, and count them nothing but refuse, that I may gain Christ 3:9 and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own, that which is of the law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which is from God by faith; 3:10 that I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, becoming conformed to his death; 3:11 if by any means I may attain to the resurrection from the dead. 3:12 Not that I have already obtained, or am already made perfect; but I press on, if it is so that I may take hold of that for which also I was taken hold of by Christ Jesus.

3:13 Brothers, I don’t regard myself as yet having taken hold, but one thing I do. Forgetting the things which are behind, and stretching forward to the things which are before, 3:14 I press on toward the goal for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. 3:15 Let us therefore, as many as are perfect, think this way. If in anything you think otherwise, God will also reveal that to you. 3:16 Nevertheless, to the extent that we have already attained, let us walk by the same rule. Let us be of the same mind. 3:17 Brothers, be imitators together of me, and note those who walk this way, even as you have us for an example. 3:18 For many walk, of whom I told you often, and now tell you even weeping, as the enemies of the cross of Christ, 3:19 whose end is destruction, whose god is the belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who think about earthly things. 3:20 For our citizenship is in heaven, from where we also wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ; 3:21 who will change the body of our humiliation to be conformed to the body of his glory, according to the working by which he is able even to subject all things to himself.

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Posted 09 October 2007 - 10:54 AM

4:1 Therefore, my brothers, beloved and longed for, my joy and crown, so stand firm in the Lord, my beloved. 4:2 I exhort Euodia, and I exhort Syntyche, to think the same way in the Lord. 4:3 Yes, I beg you also, true yokefellow, help these women, for they labored with me in the Good News, with Clement also, and the rest of my fellow workers, whose names are in the book of life. 4:4 Rejoice in the Lord always! Again I will say, “Rejoice!” 4:5 Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand. 4:6 In nothing be anxious, but in everything, by prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. 4:7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your thoughts in Christ Jesus.

4:8 Finally, brothers, whatever things are true, whatever things are honorable, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report; if there is any virtue, and if there is any praise, think about these things. 4:9 The things which you learned, received, heard, and saw in me: do these things, and the God of peace will be with you. 4:10 But I rejoice in the Lord greatly, that now at length you have revived your thought for me; in which you did indeed take thought, but you lacked opportunity. 4:11 Not that I speak in respect to lack, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content in it. 4:12 I know how to be humbled, and I know also how to abound. In everything and in all things I have learned the secret both to be filled and to be hungry, both to abound and to be in need. 4:13 I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me. 4:14 However you did well that you shared in my affliction. 4:15 You yourselves also know, you Philippians, that in the beginning of the Good News, when I departed from Macedonia, no assembly shared with me in the matter of giving and receiving but you only. 4:16 For even in Thessalonica you sent once and again to my need. 4:17 Not that I seek for the gift, but I seek for the fruit that increases to your account. 4:18 But I have all things, and abound. I am filled, having received from Epaphroditus the things that came from you, a sweet-smelling fragrance, an acceptable and well-pleasing sacrifice to God. 4:19 My God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus. 4:20 Now to our God and Father be the glory forever and ever! Amen.

4:21 Greet every saint in Christ Jesus. The brothers who are with me greet you. 4:22 All the saints greet you, especially those who are of Caesar’s household. 4:23 The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.

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Posted 09 October 2008 - 11:06 AM

09 October 2008

1 Chronicles 26
Ezekiel 35
Philippians 3; 4

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Posted 10 October 2009 - 01:06 AM

09 October 2009

1 Chronicles 26
Ezekiel 35
Philippians 3; 4

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Posted 06 March 2011 - 05:07 AM

09 October 2010

1 Chronicles 26
Ezekiel 35
Philippians 3; 4

“ ... NOW TELL YOU EVEN WITH TEARS”

The Apostle Paul is very emotional as he expresses his thoughts in his letter to the Philippians. He helps us to realize that a fully committed belief in Christ goes hand in hand with a fullness of conviction which results in a living relationship day by day with our Lord Jesus.

This comes across to us in what Paul writes here. His words, to be fully appreciated, require our emotional meditation if we are to capture the fullness of his message. Paul is greatly distressed about those who have failed to achieve this vital attitude of commitment, an attitude created by seeing the unseen! Know what we mean? This must be at the heart of all true and genuine lives of faith. It is true that there will be occasions when such a vision fails, men like David and Elijah experienced this.

The letter of Paul to the Philippines is the most positive of all his letters, yet even at Philippi he had many failures to grieve over. He writes of “many, of whom I have often told you and now tell you even with tears, walk as enemies of the cross of Christ.” [Philippians 3:18] What were they doing to make them enemies? One thing Paul says is “their God is their belly”!! It reminds us of the parable of Jesus about the man who had his mind focused on this life’s blessings and said to himself, “Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years, relax, eat, drink, be merry.” [Luke 12:19] This is the aim of so many today whether they have “ample goods” or not. Without Christ, lives many lived to this purpose can and will come to a sudden end.

Paul sums up the attitude that distressed him by stating, they have their “minds set on earthly things.” [Philippians 3:19] Undoubtedly these did not see they were doing this, they would usually find time to go and worship for an hour or two on the first day of the week.

The most positive part of Paul’s message is his appeal, “Brothers, join in imitating me, and keep your eyes on those who walk according to the example you have in us” [Philippians 3:17] “One thing I do … I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus … let us hold true to what we have attained.” [Philippians 3:13,14,16] Let us all press on and “hold true,” praying for those who cause our tears.
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Posted 09 October 2011 - 03:04 AM

09 October 2011

1 Chronicles 26
Ezekiel 35
Philippians 3; 4

LESSONS FROM HISTORY

The U S Presidents over the last two or three decades have thought they could make progress in solving the Middle East problems between Israel and the Arabs. They have made no progress at all. Some European nations have also got involved without making any progress. The situation is now more volatile than ever with the latest appeal to the United Nations. Words and more words are only generating more heat! But the nations around Israel are not really interested in peace, they are being “driven” by the hysteria generated by Islamic fundamentalists.

Today’s reading in Ezekiel 35 highlights how the nations near Israel in the prophet’s day rejoiced and sought to prosper as the big nations, Assyria and Babylon overwhelmed God’s chosen people. The prophet warns that they will suffer for their hatred. God said, I have heard all the reviling you uttered against the mountains of Israel … they are given us to devour” you say. [Ezekiel 35:12]

There is a parallel in the jealousies between human beings. Our New Testament reading shows this in referring to the friction between two sisters, Euodia and Syntyche [Philippians 4:2] who had laboured with Paul in the Gospel. His request is to “my fellow workers … help these women” get over their disagreement. Brothers can disagree too! The brothers of Jesus, sons of his mother Mary did not get along with Jesus - until after the resurrection – when their eyes were opened.

Think of how many examples there are in Scripture of brothers not getting on together! These are lessons for us, let us open our eyes with an eternal vision and make sure we do not make the same mistakes. But if we do, then we must aim do our utmost to heal the rift – for the sake of Jesus. The lessons from history are both national and personal. Nations are not listening, but we humans, especially if we are members of the body of Christ, must take lessons from the past.
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Posted 09 October 2012 - 07:31 AM

09 October 2012

1 Chronicles 26
Ezekiel 35
Philippians 3; 4

“ ... PRESS ON TOWARD THE GOAL”

The Apostle Paul is very emotional as he expresses his thoughts in his letter to the Philippians. He helps us to realize that a fully committed belief in Christ goes hand in hand with a fullness of conviction which results in a living relationship day by day with our Lord Jesus.

This comes across to us in what Paul writes here. His words, to be fully appreciated, require our emotional meditation if we are to capture the fullness of his message. Paul is greatly distressed about those who have failed to achieve this vital attitude of commitment, an attitude created by seeing the unseen! Know what we mean? This must be at the heart of all true and genuine lives of faith. It is true that there will be occasions when such a vision fails, men like David and Elijah experienced this.

The letter of Paul to the Philippines is the most positive of all his letters, yet even at Philippi he had many failures to grieve over. He writes of “many, of whom I have often told you and now tell you even with tears, walk as enemies of the cross of Christ.” [Philippians 3:18] What were they doing to make them enemies? One thing Paul says is “their God is their belly”!! It reminds us of the parable of Jesus about the man who had his mind focused on this life’s blessings and said to himself, “Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years, relax, eat, drink, be merry.” [Luke 12:19] This is the aim of so many today whether they have “ample goods” or not. Without Christ, lives many lived to this purpose can and will come to a sudden end.

Paul sums up the attitude that distressed him by stating, they have their “minds set on earthly things.” [Philippians 3:19] Undoubtedly these did not see they were doing this, they would usually find time to go and worship for an hour or two on the first day of the week.

The most positive part of Paul’s message is his appeal, “Brothers, join in imitating me, and keep your eyes on those who walk according to the example you have in us” [Philippians 3:17] “One thing I do … I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus … let us hold true to what we have attained.” [Philippians 3:13,14,16] Let us all press on and “hold true,” praying for those who cause our tears.
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Posted 09 October 2013 - 08:51 AM

09 October 2013

1 Chronicles 26
Ezekiel 35
Philippians 3; 4

"ONE THING I DO …"

The Apostle Paul is very emotional as he expresses his thoughts in his letter to the believers at Philippi. He makes us realize that a fully committed belief in Christ goes hand in hand with a fullness of conviction which creates, as a result, a living relationship day by day with our Lord Jesus.

His words, to be fully appreciated, require us to engage in emotional meditation if we are to capture the fullness of his heart felt message. Paul is greatly distressed about those who have failed to achieve this vital attitude of commitment, it is an attitude created by seeing the unseen! Do you know personally what we mean?

This ‘knowing’ must be at the heart of all true and genuine lives of faith. It is true that there will be some occasions when such a vision fails, men like David and Elijah experienced this; let us realize how David’s Psalms show his seeing’ was the driving force in his life.

The letter of Paul to the Philippines is the most positive of all his letters, yet even at Philippi he had many failures to grieve over. He writes of “many, of whom I have often told you and now tell you even with tears, walk as enemies of the cross of Christ.” [Philippians 3:18]

What were they doing to make them enemies? One thing Paul says is “their God is their belly”!! It reminds us of the parable of Jesus about the man who had his mind focussed on this life’s blessings and said to himself, “Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years, relax, eat, drink, be merry.” [Luke 12:19] This is the aim of so many today whether they have “ample goods” or not. Without Christ, lives lived with this as a dominating focus of thought can and will come to a sudden and – an eternally sad - end.

Paul sums up the attitude that distressed him by stating that such have their “minds set on earthly things.” [Philippians 3:19] Undoubtedly those who did this, did not see they were doing so, they would usually find time to go and worship for an hour or two on the first day of the week.

The most positive part of Paul’s message is his appeal, “Brothers, join in imitating me, and keep your eyes on those who walk according to the example you have in us” [Philippians 3:17] “One thing I do … I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus … let us hold true to what we have attained.” [Philippians 3:13,14,16]
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Posted 09 October 2014 - 11:01 AM

09 October 2014
 
1 Chronicles 26
Ezekiel 35
Philippians 3; 4  
 
“THE PEACE OF GOD”
           
“The peace of God” is of a totally different character to human concepts of peace.  Paul tells the Philippians, “do not be anxious about anything.”  Feeling anxious gets in the way of the kind of “peace” God alone can give.  Instead, Paul tells us to “rejoice in the Lord always ... by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God ...  and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. [Philippians 4:4-7] 
 
Let us be particularly conscious of the need for “thanksgiving” for all our blessings.  Moses’ challenge to the nation of Israel was to remember the blessings of the LORD and how he had “led” them through the wilderness. [Deuteronomy 8:2] We are travelling through the wilderness of this world.  Does it seem like a wilderness?  It does if we are really spiritually minded.
            
Paul’s wonderful words should be absorbed into our minds - and then we will have the essential strength to do, as Paul told the Philippians, to "work out your own salvation with fear and trembling." [Philippians 2:12]  But how can that give us the kind of peace Paul is writing about?  We take special note of his next words, "for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure." [Philippians 2:13]  We gain an ever greater sense of "peace" the more we sense "we are God's fellow workers" and have become part of "God's building," [1 Corinthians 3:9]
            
The wonderful experience then will be, as Paul told the Ephesians and we read 3 days ago, we will have "the whole armour of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm." [Ephesians 6:13] 
            
Returning to our chapter in Philippians, let us read and memorise Philippians 4:8-9, "Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honourable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.  What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me­practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you."  
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Posted 09 October 2015 - 08:00 AM

09 October 2015
 
1 Chronicles 26
Ezekiel 35
Philippians 3; 4
 
“OUR CITIZENSHIP IS IN HEAVEN” 
            
After writing about “the enemies of Christ” [Philippians 3:18] and saying “their end is destruction ... and they glory in their shame, with minds set on earthly things," Paul declares, "But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ,  who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body." [Philippians 3:19-21]
            
Paul then uses the word "therefore" – indicating that – 'because of this vision of your future' – "Therefore, my brothers (and sisters) whom I love and long for, my joy and crown, stand firm thus in the Lord."
            
Let us all “stand firm” – and, as opportunity arises, help each other to do this.  This lovely and inspiring epistle of Paul ends, "The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit."  We think of him as meaning – our spirit – and how our minds should be constantly sensing our Lord’s gracious forgiveness of our weaknesses – and be developing an ever greater desire to "overcome" any influence "the enemies of Christ" have on us.  We have ‘strength’ to do this because "our citizenship is in heaven."
            
May the succinct words Paul penned to the Romans inspire us – today – and every day while "we await" our "Saviour."  Paul wrote, "Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” [Romans 12:21]  And when we have achieved this, we can fully embrace the words of John in the last chapter of his first epistle – that “everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world­our faith.“ [1 John 4:4] which we possess because “our citizenship is in heaven.”   
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Posted 09 October 2016 - 01:15 PM

09 October 2016
 
1 Chronicles 26
Ezekiel 35
Philippians 3; 4  
 
"... NOW TELL YOU EVEN WITH TEARS" 
 
The Apostle Paul is very emotional as he expresses his thoughts in his letter to the Philippians.  He helps us to realize that a fully committed belief in Christ goes hand in hand with a fullness of conviction which results in a living relationship day by day with our Lord Jesus.
 
This comes across to us in what Paul writes here. His words, to be fully appreciated, require our emotional meditation if we are to capture the fullness of his message. Paul is greatly distressed about those who have failed to achieve this vital attitude of commitment, an attitude created by seeing the unseen!  Know what we mean?   This must be at the heart of all true and genuine lives of faith.   It is true that there will be occasions when such a vision fails, men like David and Elijah experienced this.  
 
The letter of Paul to the Philippines is the most positive of all his letters, yet even at Philippi he had many failures to grieve over. He writes of “many, of whom I have often told you and now tell you even with tears, walk as enemies of the cross of Christ.” [Philippians 3:18] What were they doing to make them enemies?  
 
One thing Paul says is “their God is their belly”! It reminds us of the parable of Jesus about the man who had his mind focussed on this life’s blessings and said to himself, “Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years, relax, eat, drink, be merry.” [Luke 12:19] This is the aim of so many today whether they have “ample goods” or not. Without Christ, lives many lived to this purpose can and will come to a sudden end.  
 
Paul sums up the attitude that distressed him by stating, they have their “minds set on earthly things.” [Philippians 3:19] Undoubtedly these did not see they were doing this, they would usually find time to go and worship for an hour or two on the first day of the week.
 
The most positive part of Paul’s message is his appeal, “Brothers, join in imitating me, and keep your eyes on those who walk according to the example you have in us” [Philippians 3:17] “One thing I do … I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus … let us hold true to what we have attained.” [Philippians 3:13,14,16]  Let us all press on and “hold true,” praying for those who cause our tears.
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Posted 08 October 2017 - 11:54 PM

09 October 2017
 
1 Chronicles 26
Ezekiel 35
Philippians 3; 4  
 
"WALK AS ENEMIES OF THE CROSS"
 
The Apostle Paul is very emotional as we read today his thoughts in his letter to the believers at Philippi. Paul makes us realize that a fully committed belief in Christ goes hand in hand with a fullness of conviction which creates, as a result, a living relationship day after day with our Lord Jesus.
 
His words, to be fully appreciated, require us to engage in emotional meditation if we are to capture the fullness of his heart felt message to the Philippians. Paul is greatly distressed about those who have failed to achieve this vital attitude of commitment, it is an attitude created by seeing the unseen! Do we know personally what Paul meant? 
 
This "knowing" must be at the heart of all true and genuine lives of faith. It is true that there will be some occasions when such a vision fails; faithful men like David and Elijah experienced this; let us realize how David's Psalms show that his "power" of mind in seeing - was the driving force in his life. 
 
The letter of Paul to the Philippians is the most positive of all his letters, yet even at Philippi he saw many failures that he grieved over. He writes of "many, of whom I have often told you and now tell you even with tears, walk as enemies of the cross of Christ." [Philippians 3:18].
 
What were they doing to make them enemies? One thing Paul says is their God is their belly! It reminds us of the parable of Jesus about the man who had his mind focused on this life's blessings and said to himself, "Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years, relax, eat, drink, be merry." [Luke 12:19] This is the aim of so many today whether they have "ample goods" or not. Without Christ, lives are lived with this as a dominating focus of thought can and will come to a sudden and – an eternally sad - end. How much does this influence us? 
 
Paul sums up the attitude that distressed him by stating that such have their "minds set on earthly things." [Philippians 3:19]. Undoubtedly the "believers" who did this, did not see they were doing so; they would usually find time to go and worship for an hour or two on the first day of each week.
 
The most positive part of Paul's message is his appeal, "Brothers, join in imitating me, and keep your eyes on those who walk according to the example you have in us" [Philippians 3:17] "One thing I do … I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus … let us hold true to what we have attained" [Philippians 3:13,14,16] and never be in danger of becoming enemies of the cross of Christ.
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- DC





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