Determined to Take Care of Things Quietly

Did you pray the “Save Me, Jesus, Prayer” yesterday? I hope you responded liked the shepherds did to the angel’s message.

Luke 2:17, “They left, running, and found Mary and Joseph, and the babe lying in the manger. Seeing was believing.” The Message

Your life is forever changed! You’ll see. Faith is believing before you see it. Seeing makes your faith grow but you have to believe first and then do something.

Now what? Follow Jesus. He shows us how to live.

Luke 2:46, “The next day they found Him in the Temple seated among the teachers, listening to them and asking questions.” The Message

Find a Bible-believing church. Be found there every time the doors are open. Listen and ask questions.

What about the rest of the time? Live obediently with your parents and those in authority. If you’re married do everything in your power to live peacefully with your spouse.

Luke 2:51, “So He went back to Nazareth with them, and lived obediently with them. …” The Message

“But you don’t know my family!” 

Well, let’s look at Jesus’ family:

  1. Matthew 1:3, “Judah had Perez and Zerah (the mother was Tamar), …” Tamar was his daughter-in-law, see Genesis 38:1-30.
  2. Matthew 1:5, “Salmon had Boaz (his mother was Rahab), …” Rahab was the prostitute who hid the spies in Jericho, see Joshua 2:1-21; 6:17, 22-25.
  3. Matthew 1:5, “…Boaz had Obed (Ruth was the mother) …” We read about Ruth 2 days ago. She was a foreigner of another race, see Ruth 1-4.
  4. Matthew 1:6, “…David had Solomon (Uriah’s wife was the mother).” David had an affair with Bathsheba and arranged for Uriah’s death in battle. Their first child died, see 2 Samuel 11:1-12:24.
  5. Matthew 1:7, “Solomon had Rehoboam,…” Rehoboam lost 11 of the 12 tribes of Israel in the first year that he was king, see 1 Kings 11:1-20.
  6. Matthew 1:8, “Asa had Jehoshaphat,…” Jehoshaphat won a battle without fighting, see 2 Chronicles 20:1-29.
  7. Matthew 1:9, “…Ahaz had Hezekiah.” Hezekiah also won a battle without fighting, see 2 Chronicles 32:1-22. He got sick and was dying. He asked God to extend his life. Then he asked God to make the sun go backward to prove He would! He lived another 15 years, see 2 Kings 20:1-11.
  8. Matthew 1:10, “Hezekiah had Manasseh, …” Manasseh was evil, vile, and murderous, see 2 Kings 21:1-18.
  9. Matthew 1:10, “…Amon had Josiah.” Josiah found the Book of the Law. He commanded it taught to everyone. He cleaned out the Temple and restored it, see 2 Kings 22:1-23:28.
  10. Matthew 1:11, “Josiah had Jehoiachin and his brothers…” His sons did not serve God. Everything went from bad to worse until the Babylonians destroyed the Temple and Jerusalem. The people were either killed or taken into exile, see 2 Kings 23:31-25:21.

In every family, there are relatives who make you proud. In every family, there are relatives whose decisions cause shame. Joseph is our example of responding to our family.

Matthew 1:19, “Joseph, chagrined but noble, determined to take care of things quietly so Mary would not be disgraced.” The Message

* * * * * * *

“The commitment of a betrothal was so legally binding that a divorce was required to break it off (1:19). Joseph had little choice. If a man’s betrothed wife became pregnant, people would assume that she had regarded him as an inadequate man and this would publicly humiliate him. Worse yet, should he not divorce her most people would assume that he was the one who had gotten her pregnant, and he would bear great shame in a culture that was obsessed with shame and honor.

Jewish law required a man to divorce a wife who had been unfaithful. Joseph could have divorced Mary publicly in a court. The court would not only establish his innocence, but also profit him financially: he would get to keep all of Mary’s dowry (the money her father gave her for her marriage). By planning to divorce her privately (writing out a certificate of divorce for her in front of two witnesses), Joseph elected to forfeit profit rather than shame her any further.” Chronological Study Bible Notes

We can pour on more shame or act with honor – knowing it will cost us. We don’t act alone. We ask Jesus to love through us. He can when we can’t. We won’t feel like it. It will be hard – possible excruciating. But only Jesus can heal a family.

As for the shame? Jesus carried all shame to the cross. He took it with him to Hell and left it there.

Hebrews 12:2, “We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith. Because of the joy awaiting Him, He endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now He is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne.” New Living Translation

We do not have to live with shame.

Psalms 25:2, “O, my God, in You I trust, Do not let me be ashamed; Do not let my enemies exult over me.” New American Standard Bible

Will you be getting together with family this week?

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#bible

Don’t Believe Everything You Hear

I wasn’t deliberately deceiving my husband. I just enjoyed the way his eyes lit up as he ate each bite. Across the table, Derek was ready to burst because he knew the truth.

“You really made this ice cream cake?”

“Yes, it took all afternoon.” (Okay, that was a lie.)

“It’s really good. How did you make the chocolate cookies?”

My conscience finally got the best of me and I admitted…

“It’s ice cream sandwiches covered in cool whip. Derek picked them up on his lunch hour.”

Yes, I put the cake together but I didn’t make the ingredients. It looked good, tasted great, but was not what I implied.

1 John 4:1, “My dear friends, don’t believe everything you hear. Carefully weigh and examine what people tell you. Not everyone who talks about God comes from God. There are a lot of lying preachers loose in the world.” The Message

There are a million different versions of faith and spirituality. They look good, taste great, and are oh so easy. But some of them are deadly.

Everything we read and hear has to line up with what the Bible says. My favorite example is this…

“A Christian doesn’t have to go to church.”

Hebrews 10:25, “And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of His return is drawing near.” New Living Translation

You don’t have to go to the grocery store either. But eventually, your food reserves will run out.

We feed our spirits at church. We encourage one another and help carry each other’s burdens. We pray for the sick, comfort the grieving, rejoice with each wedding and baby born. That makes our faith visible.

3 John 1:5-6, “Dear friend, when you extend hospitality to Christian brothers and sisters, even when they are strangers, (6) you make the faith visible.” The Message

©2009-2018 thisyearsbiblereadingguide.com. All Rights Reserved.

Live a Real Life, Eternal Life

We met with our accountability group on Tuesday night. We lean on these 2 couples during hard times and rejoice together during good times.

Last week we finished a DVD series from Jimmy Evans. I thought we had one more episode. So, I scrolled through some recorded Andy Stanley episodes. I found we had not finished “The N Commandments” series. We watched session 4.

“I’m worried about ________. Replace whatever word you put in that blank with “tomorrow.” Everything we worry about won’t happen until tomorrow. Don’t think about tomorrow; think about today.”

“The N Commandments” Andy Stanley

His text was Matthew 6:25-34 and “Take no thought” is in there 3 times. “Do Not Worry” or “Don’t fuss” repeated 3 times.

Then in Pastor Monte Knudsen’s sermon last night, I heard “Do not be troubled” 3 times.

  1. Matthew 24:6, “You will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled. …” New Living Translation
  2. 2 Thessalonians 2:2, “Not let your mind be quickly shaken or troubled…” New Living Translation
  3. John 14:1, “Let not your heart be troubled. …” New Living Translation

* * * * * * *

While working on yesterday’s post, I followed the advice of FBI Agent LaRae Quy. I made a list of tasks and ideas for my blog. Some items are overwhelming.

I woke at 3:30 am going over that list. I am not supposed to worry or be troubled. Then I remembered something Joseph Morris said at Faith Conference 2018.

“The rapture of the church is signless. The second coming has several signs. …Wouldn’t it be great if Jesus returned on the ‘Feast of Trumpets’ in September?” Joseph Morris at Faith Conference 2018

I went over my mental list again. If I only had until September, there wouldn’t be time to complete the first three. I think I will concentrate on the next 4 items.

This morning, I listened to Joseph Morris’ End of Days Update. He mentioned many signs, but 2 stuck with me.

  1. Blood Moons – We had four of them this last year. One was on the Passover and one on the Feast of Tabernacles. This happened 3 other times in history: 1492 – the expulsion of Jews from Spain; 1948 – when Israel became a nation in 1 day; and 1967 – when Israel reclaimed Jerusalem and all its land in the “6 Day War.”
  2. The Bethlehem Star – It appeared over 2000 years ago under the sign of Virgo. It appeared last December under the sign of Leo. Jesus was born of a virgin and He will return as the Lion of the Tribe of Judah.

Signs in the heavens. Yesterday, at lunch, I read some space trivia:

“When will the sun burn out? …So far, the star that powers our solar system has burned about half of its hydrogen reserves…the sun will grow so large it will boil our oceans and make the earth uninhabitable.” triviatoday.com

The Bible says the sun will burn out!

Matthew 24:29-31, “Immediately after the tribulation of those days; ‘the sun will be darkened, the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken.’ (30) Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. (31) And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather His elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to the other.” New Living Translation

* * * * * * *

2 Peter 3:10, “But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, in which the heavens will pass away with a roar, and the elements will be destroyed with intense heat, and the earth and its works will be burned up.” New American Standard Bible

Hmm. You can’t stop global warming and Matthew 24:31 mentioned trumpets. So, how am I going to live?

* * * * * * *

The late entertainer, formerly known as Prince, wrote a song at the turn of the century called “1999.”

“…it was judgment day…people runnin’ everywhere tryin’ to run from the destruction…war is all around us…out of time, so tonight I’m gonna party like its nineteen-ninety-nine.” “1999” by Prince

That was his answer to facing the end. He planned to live it up until he died.

Tim McGraw recorded another song about his dad when he found out he was dying.

“…and I loved deeper and I spoke sweeter and I gave forgiveness I’d been denying.” “Live Like You We’re Dying” Tim McGraw

We don’t need to live it up or live like we’re dying. Paul shows us a better way – live a real life, eternal life.

Romans 6:20-23, “As long as you did what you felt like doing, ignoring God, you didn’t have to bother with right thinking or right living, or right anything for that matter. (21) But do you call that a free life? What did you get out of it? Nothing you’re proud of now. Where did it get you? A dead end. (22) But now that you’ve found you don’t have to listen to sin to tell you what to do, and have discovered the delight of listening to God telling you, what a surprise? A whole, healed, put-together life right now, with more and more of life on the way! (23) Work hard for sin your whole life and your pension is death. But God’s gift is real life, eternal life, delivered by Jesus, our Master.” The Message

So, how do we live? Don’t worry and don’t be troubled; live like we’re leaving!

Proverbs 10:28, “The prospect of the righteous is joy, but the hopes of the wicked come to nothing.” New International Study Bible

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