Blog

God’s scale and our silent sins.

Hello. I’ve been reading in Romans and 2 Kings.

In Romans 14, I read in verse 4 that we are not supposed to judge someone else. This is talking about someone’s servant here specifically but I believe we can use it for anyone really.

What caught my eye is that we are told the master decides if the servant is doing well or not. The master decides. If we apply this to God, and I am sure that we are supposed to, then God is the only one who can judge, or decide. So so interesting. And I know that God is judge and that I am not supposed to judge people, but the thing that struck me this time is the master decides. So there is a sliding scale, depending on who you are and where you are in your walk with God. Only God knows where you are on that scale and whether you are improving or sliding back. Whoa!!!

Romans 14 later talks about how to please God. I love lists like this because it makes it easy for me to follow. Verses 16-18 say:

1. Live right with God

2. Peace

3. Joy in the Holy Spirit

Verse 18, which is right after this list says, “Anyone who serves Christ by living his way is pleasing God and will be accepted by other people.”  So we please God and others when we live right with God, have peace, and are joyful.

One question that arises is how do we exactly live right with God? The only way to know is by reading all of his instructions about life in the Bible. So #1 on the list is a very big number one. It takes wanting to know, reading, and asking God to help you understand.

In 2 Kings I have been reading about Josiah, my favorite king of Judah. He was eight years old when he became king and ruled 31 years. I was reading about his sons and stuff and did a little math. It looks like he was age 14 and 16 when his sons were born who became kings? Wow, unless my math is wrong, which it so very well could be. It is in chapter 22 if you want to read and calculate it out. Let me know if my calculations are wrong-ola!

In 2 Kings 24 I read where God would not forgive their sins. He is talking about the people of Judah. In the new testament we are told in a few places where God will not forgive us or what will happen if we don’t forgive others.

Matthew 6:15 But if you don’t forgive others, your Father in heaven will not forgive your sins.

Matthew 18:35 This king did what my heavenly Father will do to you if you do not
forgive your brother or sister from your heart.

Someone may look like they are living right but secretly be harboring unforgiveness to someone. This is sin no one else can see. We know that we are saved by faith by believing in Jesus. Believing that he is fully God and fully man, that he lived a perfect life and died with all of the blame put upon him. Believing that he conquered death by rising again and is alive today. We who believe this will live again with him. When we get there (to everlasting life with God) we can be clean of sin or have sin that has not been forgiven. We still get to heaven, but while we lived we were warned that God will not forgive sins if we haven’t forgiven others. Sooooo, I would rather deal with the sin here and now and show up in heaven with a clean slate, than to hold a grudge and enter God’s glory with unforgiven sin. The verse in Matthew 18:35 is at the end of the story of what God will do to us with that unforgiven sin.

LORD, help me to recognize sin in my life and please forgive me for it. Help me to recognize anything I may hold against anyone else, remind me of it and help me to forgive others. Thank you for making me clean. I love you Lord, and I am looking forward to heaven very much.

 

Advertisements

Resting in the fact that God is in charge :)

Hello, I haven’t been blogging much lately. But I have been reading!!! I made a new goal to blog at least 3 times per week. I started blogging yesterday but didn’t get back to it to finish. So I will continue it today! Yesterday I read Proverbs 20, Psalm 136, and Romans 12. Today I read Romans 13 but I wanted to mention some stuff from yesterday.

In Psalm 136 the sentence “His love continues forever” is repeated 26 times. That tells me it must be super important!

I read in Proverbs 20:22 to let God do any payback for you and not to do it yourself. Then in Romans 12, verse 19 it says the same thing! I love it when I read the same stuff in different books. God’s message is the same over and over again. 🙂

Today I read how we need to yield to government rulers because no one rules unless God has given them the power to do it. This is a good reminder today because of how scary everything is around the presidential election. I have never been this concerned about voicing my opinion about who I voted for or who I didn’t vote for. Yikes. I just don’t approach that subject with anyone. But I do rest in the words I am reading here. I am relieved to know God puts the person in charge that he has allowed to and it doesn’t really matter what anyone thinks. And then this next verse which solidifies that I should not question those in government: Verse 2 of Romans 13 says, “So those who are against the government are really against what God has commanded. And they will bring punishment on themselves.”  Double whoa.

Horses and chariots of fire, awesome but also a wonder…

Hello, today I read 2 Kings 7, Psalm 123, Proverbs 9, and Romans 4.

Romans 4 was amazing, you should go read it. I’m thinking the entire book of Romans is worth a read more often than any reading plan calls for!

I wanted to talk about the horses and chariots of fire that are mentioned a few times so far in 2 Kings. I hadn’t noticed how many times they are mentioned before. Today I read about how God made the Aramean camp hear the sounds of chariots, horses, and a large army when there wasn’t one. They thought the king of Israel had partnered up with some other kings and their armies to fight them so they ran away leaving all of their things behind. As I am writing this I am realizing that my initial thought may be wrong. I was thinking the sounds were the hoses and chariots of fire, but God could have made them hear the noises even if nothing was there. Well, anyway, they are mentioned two other times. Once in 2:11 when Elijah is taken by them and Elisha sees it happen. Then in 6:17 when Elisha’s servant sees the Aramean army surrounding them and he freaks out. Elisha tells him “the army that fights for us is bigger than the army against us.” Elisha then prays and asks God to open the eyes of the servant and let him see. God answered this prayer and the servant could see that the mountains were full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha. How cool is that?

I’m not sure what these are exactly. I know they took Elijah away and that it was a good thing not a bad thing. Then Elisha knew they were surrounding him and were a stronger army (an invisible one at that!) than the Aramean army. However, Elisha asked God to make the Aramean army men blind so the horses and chariots didn’t do any fighting here.

I’ve heard that the horses and chariots are angels and they are fighting a spiritual battle around us but I don’t get that from what I have read about them so far. I am going to keep note of when they are mentioned again and hopefully I can get some more understanding about them.

How God makes people right with him.

Hello! Today I read Romans 3 and Psalm 122.

You should go and read Romans 3. It is so awesome.

Here is my favorite part, it is verses 21 through 26:

But God has a way to make people right with him without the law, and he has now shown us that way which the law and the prophets told us about. 22 God makes people right with himself through their faith in Jesus Christ. This is true for all who believe in Christ, because all people are the same: 23 Everyone has sinned and fallen short of God’s glorious standard, 24 and all need to be made right with God by his grace, which is a free gift. They need to be made free from sin through Jesus Christ. 25 God sent him to die in our place to take away our sins. We receive forgiveness through faith in the blood of Jesus’ death. This showed that God always does what is right and fair, as in the past when he was patient and did not punish people for their sins. 26 And God gave Jesus to show today that he does what is right. God did this so he could judge rightly and so he could make right any person who has faith in Jesus.

Whoa!!! This is so very liberating!!!

Thank you, Lord, for your promise when we believe and have faith in who you are and in what you have done.

Being laughed at.

Hello, today I read Acts 22, 23, 1 Kings 20, Psalm 117, and Proverbs 3.

In Acts I read about Paul before the high priest, in 23:2-5, and he is hit in the mouth by the guard. Paul then says he didn’t realize he was talking to the high priest. This reminded me of something similar that happened to Jesus. I found it in John 18:22-23. Jesus is talking to the high priest and they hit him in the mouth. The difference is after Jesus was hit it says in verse 23, “Jesus answered him, “If I said something wrong, then show what it was. But if what I said is true, why do you hit me?” I just thought that was interesting, those two events.

In Proverbs this verse caught my eye. It is 3:34, “The LORD laughs at those who laugh at him, but he gives grace to those who are not proud.” I had a note jotted in the margin that said to see Psalm 2:4 and Jude 18. So I looked those up.

Psalm 2:4, “But the one who sits in heaven laughs; the Lord makes fun of them.”

Jude 18, “They said to you, “In the last times there will be people who laugh about God, following their own evil desires which are against God.””

So so interesting! I find the verse in Jude to be very true today. Blatantly laughing at what God has to say about certain things and choosing their own way. Interesting that God laughs back at them. What about when we choose our own way but we aren’t purposely laughing at God? Maybe we are being lazy or stupid and decide our way is just easier at that moment? I think that is different but it still isn’t innocent and lacking consequence. God may not laugh at us in that circumstance, but I imagine he will be disappointed.

LORD, I want to choose your way. Help me to keep reading and learning so that your ways are always fresh in my mind. I don’t want to laugh at you and I really don’t want you to laugh back at me. I would rather laugh with you one day! Thank you LORD, I love you.

The three things.

Today I read Proverbs 27, 28, Psalm 111, Acts 16, 1Kings 17.

In 1 Kings I read about Elijah, this is the first mention of him. First he goes to King Ahab of Israel (Ahab has done more wrong than anyone before him, he is an evil king) and tells him that there’s going to be no rain until he commands it. God tells Elijah to go to a town called Zarephath and a woman, who is a widow, will take care of him. He meets her as she was preparing to make her last meal for her son and her so that they can eat it and die. He tells her that her jar of flour and her jug of oil will never run out until the day that God brings the rain back. We are told that sometime later her son dies and she asks Elijah why this has happened and he prays to God and brings the boy back to life.

In Acts, this is where there is a transition in the writing. The writer has been talking about Paul and the people with him and then in verse 10 it changes to “we”, so Luke is including himself and what’s going on after this point. I also read about a woman named Lydia and it says that God open her mind to hear the teachings and understand them.

In Proverbs a couple versus caught my eye.

27:19 says, “As water reflects your face so your mind shows what kind of person you are.”

28:5 says, “Evil people do not understand justice, but those who follow the LORD understand it completely.”

28:9 says, “If you refuse to obey what you have been taught your prayers will not be heard.”

And in Psalms I read how God is holy and wonderful and can be trusted. Everything he does is good and fair.

Interesting how everything God does is good and fair but he allows us to be not good and not fair. He has given us the free will to choose to do things our way instead of his way. And the verse from Proverbs tells us when we refuse to do things his way then when we talk to him he’s not going to hear us. Yikes! So faith opens up the door for relationship with God but the way we act can affect our communication with him. I suppose when we trust God then it will show in our actions because we will be doing things the way that he says we should do them. I believe this includes more than just actions though. Words and thoughts too, I am sure.

So faith, trust, and obedience equals an open communication with God and a life that is pleasing to him. I like how we are told that God opened the mind of Lydia, so she could understand and make a choice. She wanted to know and when she understood she chose God. But we can choose to have faith only, but I believe there are consequences to living that way even though we will go to heaven. And we can choose no faith with the consequences being eternal separation from God.

I choose faith, trust, and obedience LORD. Help me to understand your ways and keep on your path. I want my mind to be opened like Lydia’s. Thank you Lord Jesus!!!

Get up from sleeping.

Today I read 1 Kings 14, Psalm 108, Proverbs 24, and Acts 13.

This morning I was laying in bed thinking I should really get up. Then I thought about a bible verse that says something about someone who lays in bed. So then after I finally got up I was reading my portions of scripture for the day and I read the verses that I was thinking about!

I read Proverbs 24:33-34, “You sleep a little; you take a nap. You fold your hands and lie down to rest. 34 Soon you will be as poor as if you had been robbed; you will have as little as if you had been held up.”
Whoa did that hit me like a ton of bricks. But I remembered something about a lazy person in bed, so I googled it and found Proverbs 6:9 which says, “How long will you lie there, you lazy person? When will you get up from sleeping?” And then the verses right after that (6:10, 11) are the exact same as Proverbs 24:33-34!!!

I love it when stuff like that happens. Something comes to mind and then there it is right there in my daily reading! It’s a God thing! But these verses that God put in my mind today and then I read are warnings about laziness, so I better listen to them and not let sleep get the best of me.

LORD, thank you for this today, help me keep from the easy and lazy. Help me to be diligent each day and please you with what I accomplish. You’re an awesome God and I love how you show yourself to me in ways like this.

One odd story and just how do we affect our environment?

Good morning, today I read 1 Kings 13, Proverbs 23, Psalm 107, and Acts 12.

I read an interesting story in 1 Kings. A man of God from Judah is commanded to go and see Jeroboam to speak against the altar in Bethel. He tells Jeroboam a man named Josiah will be born and to show this will happen the altar will break apart and ashes will fall to the ground. When Jeroboam heard this he raised his arm and said to take the man away, but then his arm got stuck, paralyzed right then and there. The altar also broke and ashes fell to the ground. So Jeroboam asked the man to pray to God to heal his arm. So the man did that and Jeroboam’s arm became like it was before.

Then the story gets odd. Jeroboam asks the man to stay and eat and the man says he won’t because God told him not to eat or drink and to leave the city on a different road than he came. So he left. But then another man of God, this man is from Bethel and is called the old prophet, goes to find him and lies to him. He tells the man from Judah to come back to his house in Bethel to eat and drink with him because God told him to do this. So the man from Judah does this and while he is sitting at the table, verse 21, “The old prophet cried out to the man of God from Judah, “The LORD said you did not obey him! He said you did not do what the LORD your God commanded you. 22 The LORD commanded you not to eat or drink anything in this place, but you came back and ate and drank. So your body will not be buried in your family grave.””

It is odd to me that the old prophet would lie to the man from Judah and that the man from Judah would listen to this old prophet guy instead of following what God had told him. And, it says he left after he finished eating. So he continued his meal???

Anyway, a lion attacks him, kills him and stands there with the man’s donkey. We are told the lion did not eat the body or the donkey but just stood there. Wonder why that is mentioned in the story? The old prophet comes and gets his body and buries it in his own family’s grave. He held a time of sadness and tells his sons to bury him in the same grave with the man from Judah, putting his bones next to the man’s bones.

Weird story right? At the end of the chapter it says Jeroboam did not stop doing evil. He allowed anyone to be a priest for the places of worship and this sin caused its ruin and destruction from the earth. It says “caused its ruin”…I am not sure what the “its” is referring to? To the family of Jeroboam maybe?

I read something in Psalm 107 that caught my eye. It is verses 33-34, “He changed rivers into a desert and springs of water into dry ground. 34 He made fertile land salty, because the people there did evil.” Interesting how the land was affected by the evil people did. Maybe the “its” I was wondering about was an actual place, the place where the altars were. Makes me think about things today. The green movement, recycling, and all that stuff. I think it is good, but people think that is how we are going to make the earth’s environment better. Could it be the evil we do is what affects our environment? That is how it used to be, I am thinking it may still apply. So so interesting.

 

Israel divided.

Today I read Psalm 106, Acts 11, Proverbs 21, 22, and 1 Kings 12.

In Kings I read about the split of Israel. Solomon’s son (Jeroboam) made a stupid decision and it made the Israelites leave except for the people in the towns of Judah. So the Israelites who left had Rehoboam become king over them and he did things like make golden calves to worship and let anybody become a priest. So this is the fulfillment of the prophecy that was told when God said the kingdom would be pulled from Solomon’s son except for one tribe.

The stupid decision I mentioned earlier was that Jeroboam decided to listen to young advisors instead of the older advisers and chose to be hard on the people. So again this goes back to a question I had earlier about the Israelites being slaves and forced to work hard. This right here proves that they were slaves under the leadership of Solomon. And now Solomon’s son was making their work even harder, so it’s understandable why they didn’t want him to be their king.

Psalm 106 is a continuing summary that started in Psalm 105. It is a pretty quick and opinionated summary, I don’t know what other word to use there, but the writer talks not only about the facts but also about what people were thinking, which could be the writer’s opinion. And since this is the inspired word of God, it is the opinion of God, and therefore true. 🙂

1000 wife-type people?

Hello, today I read Proverbs 20, Acts 10, Psalm 15, and 1 Kings 11.

In Acts I read about the vision that Peter had with the different animals he is told to eat. What this ends up meaning is the news about Jesus is to be told to all people. Peter says in Acts 10:34, “Peter began to speak: “I really understand now that to God every person is the same.”

In 1 Kings I read about all the wives Solomon had from all different countries and how he ended up following their gods. Verses 11-12 says, “So the LORD said to Solomon, “Because you have chosen to break your agreement with me and have not obeyed my commands, I will tear your kingdom away from you and give it to one of your officers. 12 But I will not take it away while you are alive because of my love for your father David. I will tear it away from your son when he becomes king.” God also says his son will be allowed to rule over one tribe. 

Because Solomon had so many wives he didn’t follow God completely and the deal with God was broken. It wasn’t broken because of all the wives, even though they were commanded not to marry people from the other nations, but because he ended up worshipping their false gods. Wonder why Solomon wanted so many wives? It says he had 700 wives from royal families and 300 slaves who gave birth to his children, so they were wives too then? That’s a lot of wives, it just doesn’t seem right does it? Anyway, this ended up being a real bad thing for Solomon. Where was his wisdom?

In Psalms I read this awesome verse, it is verse 3, “Be glad that you are his; let those who seek the LORD be happy.”

Peter learned that everyone was allowed to receive the news about Jesus because in God’s eyes all people are the same. David had a special relationship with God because he was totally committed and followed God completely. Solomon, however, didn’t follow God completely and caused a problem with his relationship with God. I believe all people are invited to accept the gift of salvation from God, but I also believe God has his favorites, and our relationship to God can be affected by our actions.