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Posts Tagged ‘Lent’

As we come upon Holy Week, this is our last lesson in the series “From Supper to Sunrise”.

This lesson will give us a look at what happened “the day after” Jesus was crucified and then takes us right into the sunrise of Sunday morning.  In this lesson we will examine the sequence of events and the reconciling of supposed contradictions of the Resurrection story. The questions that we will cover in this last lesson are:

  • Who were the women at the cross?
  • And probably one of the most difficult of all to answer – Why did Jesus have to die?

Lesson six

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Lesson Five

Lesson five examines six interrogations or trials that Jesus underwent during the wee hours of Friday morning before the crucifixion; how each one of them was actually an illegal trial, and how these trials relate to us today. This lesson will lead us to ask:

  • What kind of trials am I facing today?
  • How does Jesus know what I’m dealing with?

Also remember – the number “6” is the number of man. All these trials were brought about by “man”.

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Have you ever cried out for God to let a “cup” pass you by? Have you ever had to say, “Thy Will Be Done”? This week’s lesson looks at what happened in the Garden of Gethsemane.

 

Audio Lesson

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This lesson explores Jesus’ High Priestly prayer found in John 17

Audio Lesson

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For your Lenten listening enjoyment The Great Mistrial

 

This CD will take you from the depths of the Garden of Gethsamane to the heights of the Ascension! Download it today!

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 Exodus 3

Read Chapter 3

Ah! Moses and the Burning Bush – now that’s an interesting story! Did you notice that Moses didn’t seem surprised that a voice spoke to him from the bush? In fact, he wasn’t afraid at all until God told him that He was “The God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.” Then Moses hid his face…

What I want us to focus on today is – who is this God? In this chapter we find, actually, four names or descriptions of God. As we saw yesterday, the God who knew and cared for His people was Elohiym. Elohiym is a masculine, plural word which literally means “Supreme God” – He is the Creator God of Genesis 1:1, and Psalm 47:7 reminds us that He is the King of all the earth. It is a plural word, signifying the Trinity, but always has a singular verb, teaching that the Three are One (we always say “God is” not “God are”…)

In chapter 3, we now find another designation for God – and that is LORD. ” The Hebrew word for LORD is Yahweh, which we also know as Jehovah. Jehovah (or Yahweh) is the Jewish National name of God. In other words, it’s His unique or “personal” name (this name is first mentioned in Genesis 2:4 when the “creation story” begins to get “personal”).

In verse 14 we read God saying “I AM WHO I AM”. In this we find another of God’s names – and that is “I AM”. “I AM” (hayah) is a Hebrew verb meaning “to be” or “to exist” but, with an incomplete action – which means it is the “everlasting present” – better known to us as “He who is, and was, and is to come.”

But, here’s the most important thing for us to learn. In relating to Moses how he should introduce God to the Israelites (verses 15-16), God describes Himself as “The LORD, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.” And also in verse 18 God describes Himself as “The LORD, the God of the Hebrews.”

Now think for a moment what that is really saying… It is saying that for Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and for the Hebrews – their Yahweh was Elohiym – their LORD was God – their personal God was the Supreme God of all of creation!

What about us? Is our Elohiym, Yahweh? We all have an Elohiym – whether it has a capital “E” or a little “e”. But the question remains, “Is my Elohiym – Yahweh?” Is the thing that drives me, my love and devotion to my Lord? Or is it, as Paul put it in Philippians 3:19, my “belly”; my own appetites, my own desires?

It has been said that you can determine a person’s priorities by looking at their calendar and their checkbook. Where do we spend the most time? And where do we spend the most money? And so we ask, “Is our Elohiym (the thing/person/Person that commands most of our time and attention) Yahweh/Jesus? Or is it something or someone else?

 

Let us pray that the “supreme God” of our hearts and our nation will once again be the Lord. Amen.

 

 

 

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Where is your Lenten Journey taking you? Mine is taking me through the book of Exodus. For the first two days I began by sharing a short devotional on my Facebook ministry page Prayerlogue, but now I have decided to post them here daily as well. Below will be Day 2, Day 1, and the introduction (keeping them in the sequence they would be if I posted each day). Feel free to share the posts or jump over and “like” my Prayerlogue page on Facebook.

The Exodus Journey

Day Two: Exodus 2

Read Chapter 2

Chapter 2 of Exodus contains, likely, one of the most well-known stories in the Bible – that of Moses in the Bulrushes. This chapter also covers an eighty year span of Moses’ life as well.

Verses 1-10 account for his first three months of life, while forty years pass between verses 10-11. We’re next allowed a brief two-day peek at a pivotal episode occurring between verses 11 and 14, and then another short period – likely less than a year – takes place from verses 15-22. Finally, forty more years pass between verses 22 and 23.

Eighty years in 23 verses… Does it sometimes feel like your life has passed that quickly as well? As we will see in the upcoming weeks, God was preparing Moses for what is yet to come. But, what a difference a day can make! There was the one day he was found by an Egyptian princess; and one day he arrogantly decided to be the savior of his people (there’s a sermon there!) and the one day he had to flee for his life. Tomorrow (unless God leads me another direction) we’ll likely talk about one of the single most important days in Moses’ life, but for now – there’s something else on my heart.

Look at verses 23-25. In the Bible where I was reading this scripture, I had to turn the page for verses 24-25 and the words from these verses practically leaped off the page at me. The Amplified Bible puts it this way: “And God heard their sighing and groaning and [earnestly] remembered His covenant with Abraham, with Isaac, and with Jacob. God saw the Israelites and took knowledge of them and concerned Himself about them [knowing all, understanding, remembering all].”

Look at the verbs. God heard; God [earnestly] remembered; God saw and God took knowledge and concerned Himself… The word for “know”, “yada”, is the same as we saw yesterday, but where Pharaoh did not know (or care about) Joseph – God (Elohiym – this name is important) did know and care about His chosen people. As the song, “I Must Tell Jesus” says, “He ever loves and cares for His own.”

Yes, the Israelites had been in slavery for some 400 years. Yes, there were 400 (so called) “silent years” between the Old and New Testaments. And yes, it has been over 2100 years since Jesus was crucified, buried, resurrected and ascended into heaven. But remember, 2 Peter 3:9 says, “The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.”

There will come a day when Jesus will come again – and what a day that shall be!

Gracious and Loving God give peace and comfort to Your children as we await the day of our Saviour’s call and His return in Glory for we pray in His Holy Name – Amen.

 

The Exodus Journey

Ash Wednesday – First Day of Lent: Exodus 1

Read Exodus 1

The Children of Israel/Jacob came into Egypt to escape a famine. Joseph was already there, placed there by the providence of God (Genesis 50:20 “You meant it for evil against me, but God meant it for good”) and they thrived in the land. But then, “A new king arose in Egypt who did not know Joseph” (Exodus 1:8).

The word “know” is the Hebrew word “yada”. According to Strong’s Hebrew Dictionary, the word can be used in many ways, including “observation, care, and recognition”. In other words – Pharaoh (the king) either knew who Joseph was and just didn’t care or Joseph’s place in history had vanished. Either way – Joseph’s influence and his value system were gone, and the Israelites, who were once welcomed in the land (Genesis 47:6) were now considered a threat. Life became very difficult – even to the point of being “life-threatening” (Exodus 1:16).

What do you do when your circumstances threaten your faith? If you’ve been told by your boss or someone in authority to do something immoral, illegal, or that goes against your belief system – what would you do? Two Israelite midwives were commanded to kill all the boy babies (verse 16) “But the midwives feared God and did not do as the king had commanded them, but let the boys live” (verse 17).

They stood strong and God blessed them – and so must we. Will it be easy? No, it won’t. “Then Pharaoh commanded ALL HIS PEOPLE saying ‘Every [Israelite] son who is born you are to cast into the Nile, and every daughter you are to keep alive” (verse 22, emphasis added).

It won’t be easy. Everyone may turn against you, but who do you fear – God or man? Jesus said, “Don’t be afraid of those who want to kill your body; they cannot touch your soul. Fear only God who can destroy both soul and body in hell” (Matthew 10:28 NLT).

Fear only God.

Prayer:

Heavenly Father, as we begin this journey toward Lent, we sense that this year is somehow different. We feel the pressure rising against our faith. Strengthen us that we may stand even if “all the people” may be against us for we know, as Paul said, “If Christ is for us, who can be against us”? And so, it is in Jesus’ precious name we pray – Amen.

 

The Exodus Journey

Introduction

Below is a definition of Lent, which begins with Ash Wednesday. Join in as we take a 40 day journey through the book of Exodus during this Lenten season. There are a couple of reasons for my choosing the book of Exodus – first of all – it has 40 chapters (convenient, huh?) Second, it is in Exodus that we find the instructions for the Passover and the all important “Choosing of the Lamb” Day. (I think you’ll really enjoy that.) So – feel free to share these posts or invite your friends along for this Journey through Exodus for this Lenten season

What is Lent? According to The Evangelical Dictionary of Theology, it is: “A forty-day period of penitence and prayer which begins on Ash Wednesday and prepares for the feast of Easter.” (Sundays aren’t counted as they are days of celebration and worship.)

“It is a form of retreat for Christians preparing to celebrate the paschal mystery. It became a forty-day retreat during the seventh century to coincide with the forty day spent by Christ in the desert.” Matthew 4:1-11; Mark 1:12-13; Luke 4:1-13.

Other “40 Day” fastings and testings:
Moses – Exodus 24; 34; Deuteronomy 9
Elijah – 1 Kings 19

“Penitential works are very important during Lent. These include not only abstinence and fasting, but also prayers and charitable works. Ash Wednesday is one of the greatest days of penitence. (However) people should realize that the penitence is in preparation for celebrating the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Christians seek a change of heart during Lent in their relationship to God.”

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