March 5, 2014

Excellent post differentiating between God’s commandments and man-made regulations.

Virtual Vitamins

Deuteronomy 4:1-2 Hear now, O Israel, the decrees and laws I am about to teach you. Follow them so that you may live and go in and take possession of the land that the LORD, the God of your fathers, is giving you. Do not add to what I command you and do not subtract from it, but keep the commands of the LORD your God that I give you.

It strikes me strongly that it didn’t take the Israelites long to violate what Moses says here, because they added a great deal to what he said to them from the Lord. It was all couched as “interpretation,” but it effectively amounted to a mountain of regulations that, as Peter said much later, “neither we nor our fathers have been able to bear.” (Acts 15:10) The purpose of God’s rules and regulations is always our good, to keep us from…

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Was Jesus Crucified on Good Friday?

JONAH AND JESUS

And the Lord appointed a great fish to swallow Jonah, and Jonah was in the stomach of the fish three days and three nights (Jonah 1: 17, NASB).

“For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of a huge fish, so the Son of Man will be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth” (Matthew 12: 40, NIV)

If Jesus was crucified on Good Friday and rose from the dead on Sunday, He was not in the tomb three days and three nights.  So when was Jesus crucified?

BACK TO LEVITICUS

The Sabbath is the seventh day of the week, according to Exodus 20: 8.  In addition to the weekly Sabbath, seven Sabbaths fall within the feast days listed in Leviticus 23: 1-44, and they often occur on weekdays.  In the Feast of Unleavened Bread alone, you will find two of these “special” Sabbaths.  Read on.

” ‘The LORD’s Passover begins at twilight on the fourteenth day of the first month.  On the fifteenth day of that month the LORD’s Feast of Unleavened Bread begins; for seven days you must eat bread without yeast.  *ON THE FIRST DAY HOLD A SACRED ASSEMBLY AND DO NO REGULAR WORK.  For seven days present an offering made to the LORD by fire.  AND ON THE SEVENTH DAY HOLD A SACRED ASSEMBLY AND DO NO REGULAR WORK’ “ (Leviticus 23: 5-8, NIV).  [I added all caps for emphasis.]

If Jesus was crucified on Wednesday (Passover) and buried before sundown, He was in the grave Thursday, Friday, and Saturday and rose from the dead on the first day of the week before sunrise.  Thus, He was in the grave three days and three nights.

24 HOUR DAZE

Keep in mind that a day on the Hebrew calendar is from sundown to sundown.  Why?  According to Genesis 1: 5, God called the light “day,” and the darkness he called “night.”  And there was evening, and there was morning–the first day.

If you didn’t learn this in Sunday school, you’re not alone.  Neither did I.  I once heard a devout Christian say, “Leviticus makes me sick.”  Isn’t that sad?  I don’t blame her for saying that.  The truth is that Christians have been conditioned to pay lip service to the Old Testament while ignoring many of its teachings.  Understanding Leviticus is essential to understanding God’s timeline and calendar. He goes by the Hebrew calendar not the Gregorian calendar. His feast days are define appointments.

* The first and the seventh day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread are Sabbaths.  If the Passover fell on a Wednesday that year, then the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread began at sundown Wednesday.  In between the first day and the seventh day of the Feast was the weekly Sabbath (Friday at sundown through Saturday at  sundown.)  That’s adds up to three Sabbaths during the week of Passover.

For more information about the Resurrection, see “Easter, Eostre, Resurrection Sunday.”

Revive Us Again

“The days are coming,” declares the Sovereign LORD, “when I will send a famine throughout the land–not a famine of food or thirst for water, but a famine of hearing the words of the LORD.  Men will stagger from sea to sea and wander from north to east, searching for the word of the LORD. but they will not find it” (Amos 8: 11-12 NIV)

Context:  Amos was prophesying  before Israel was captured by the Assyrians.  Is there a famine of hearing the words of the LORD today?  Pray for revival.

Storm Over Washington

It’s snowing in Washington as President Obama meets with Benjamin Netanyahu in the White House.    As I was thinking about this and John Kerry’s peace plan, I opened the Bible randomly and my eyes fell on Psalm 83.

O God, do not remain quiet; Do not be silent and, O God, do not be still.  For, behold, Thine enemies make an uproar; And those who hate Thee have exalted themselves.  They make shrewd plans and conspire together against Thy treasured ones.  They have said, “Come, and let us wipe them out as a nation, That the name of Israel be remembered no more.”  For they gave conspired together with one mind; Against Thee do they make a covenant: The tents of Edom and the Ishmaelites; Moab, and the Hagrites; Gebal, and Ammon, and Amalek; Philistia with the inhabitants of Tyre; Assyria also has joined with them; They have become a help to the children of Lot.  (Psalm 83: 1-8 NASB).

BACK TO GENESIS

And Hagar bare Abram a son: and Abram called his son’s name, which Hagar bare, Ishmael.  And Abram was fourscore and six years old, when Hagar bare Ishmael to Abram (Genesis 16: 15, 16 KJV).

And when Abram was ninety years old and nine, the LORD appeared to Abram, and said unto him, I am the Almighty God; walk before me, and be thou perfect.  And I will make my covenant between me and thee, and will multiply thee exceedingly.  And Abram fell on his face: and God talked with him, saying, As for me, behold, my covenant is with thee, and thou shalt be a father of many nations.  Neither shall thy name any more be called Abram, but thy name shall be Abraham; for a father of many nations.  Neither shall thy name any more be called Abram, but thy name shall Abraham; for a father of many nations have I made thee.  And I will establish my covenant between me and thee and thy seed after thee in their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be a God unto thee, and to thy seed after thee.  And I will give unto thee, and to thy seed after thee, the land wherein thou art a stranger, all the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession; and I  will be their God (Genesis 17: 1-8 KJV).

And Abraham said unto God, O that Ishmael might live before thee!  And God said, Sarah thy wife shall bear thee a son indeed; and thou shalt call his name Isaac: and I will establish my covenant with him for an everlasting covenant, and his his seed after him.  And as for Ishmael, I have heard thee: Behold, I have blessed him, and will make him fruitful, and will multiply him exceedingly; twelve princes shall he beget, and I will make him a great nation.  But my covenant will I establish with Isaac, which Sarah shall bear  unto thee at this set time this year (Genesis 17: 18-21 KJV).

ISAAC’S BLESSING OVER JACOB

“Cursed be those who curse you, And blessed be those bless you” (Genesis 27: 29 NASB)

DON’T MESS WITH GOD’S REAL ESTATE

“For the day of the LORD draws near on all the nations.  As you have done, it will be done to you.  Your dealings will return on your own head” (Obadiah 1: 15 NASB).

RECONCILIATION

Father Abraham has many sons, and God loves them all, but Abraham’s family is dysfunctional.  Reconciliation is possible through Christ alone.  Therefore if any man is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.  Now all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ, and gave us the ministry of reconciliation, namely, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and He has committed to us the word of reconciliation.  Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God entreating through us; we beg you on behalf of Christ to be reconciled to God.  He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him (2 Corinthians 5: 17-21 NASB) Shalom.

 

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