A week of being restored, and regaining atonement to worship in the temple. Place this along side the price for the true sacruifuice of life to be eter nally redeemed for service in the spiritual kingdom.
Sunday, April 5
Had a nice sunrise service. We had the group, Humble Servants come to sing. I don’t know how they do it. They take no money for their travel, or expenses, but do a great job at singing and telling their word from god.
Funny moment. Just as the final note of their praise music faded away, a cell phone recieved a text message. The voice of Yoda could be heard loud and clear in that moment of silence as the pastor got ready to start his sermon. “Hmm… a message from the dark side, there is.” Not missing a beat, and after the laughter died down, the pastor started with these words, “It looks like Satan has been listening in, but he’s going to have to hear more”.
Bonus to the funny moment: It was pastor’s wife with the cell phone.
Afterward, we had to go to Altamont to help David sort through the garage.
Managed to squeeze in some podcast updates for retro. More to do.
Passage: Ezra 6, Psalm 66, Luke 17.
Theme: God is at Work, Now.
Who’s in it and what’s happening:
Ezra 6. In responce to the charges of the secular leaders, the king searches his archives. A decree is found.
It commanded the rebuilding of the temple, complete with the use of large stones, and timbers. The temple utensils were also to be returned.
The secular leaders were to stand aside and let them build. Even more, they were to be authorized to pay taxes to Jerusalem. They were to support the project, and give any daily sacrifice needs to the priests. To not comply meant the risk of being impaled on a beam from their own house.
They complied, the temple was built.
The priests, and people celebrated with joy. The number of animals sacrificed are listed.
The exoiles rejoiced at their first passover and feast of unleavened bread.
Psalms 66Shout for joy to god. Glory and praise to his name.
His works: turned the sea to dry land, they passed through the river on foot, he rules and watches over the nation.
Bless god who keeps our feet from slipping, refines us as silver. Delivered from oppression and distress, I’ll sacrifice and whorship.
I called, and he came. He listens.
Luke 17. Various teachings from Jesus to his disciples. Troubles come, but woe to the one who brings them. If your brother sins, and repents, keep on forgiving him.
In responce to asking for more faith, it’s compared to a mustard seede, and having the power to uproot a tree.
A parable. If you had a slave who did his job, and came at your request to make your dinner, you’d expect him to do it. Even without thanks. It’s his job. The same way, consider yourselves the servants of god. Respond to him as humble servants, simply doing your job.
On the way to Jerusalem, 10 lepers are healed. Ohnly 1, a Samaritan, returned to thank him.
The pharissees asked when the kingdom of heaven will come. The answer, it’s not one you can see. It’s not a place, , but it’s already here.
Jesus tells his disciples a day would come when they’d long for the son of man. Meaning himself. Don’t believe what other people may tell you about it. Like lightening, his moment would be revealed. Striking in a single place, but with light that fills the sky. First, suffering and rejection must come.
Just as in the days of Noah, or Lot, it’ll be business as usual. Eating, drinking, marrying, buying, selling, and building, but the end comes in a flash. The same as when the son of man is revealed.
There won’t be time to react, as in coming down from the house, or in from the field. One is taken, and the other not.
Note: Jesus is describing the day of his death, and how he’ll truly be revealed. These passages often are brought up as end time scenarios, and can be used that way, since it would also compare to the days of Lot, and of Noah. Business as usual, right up to that moment when it comes, and it’s too late.
Monday, April 6
Well, not so much cleaning as I thought. Mostly carrying things in from the van, and putting away laundry that never quite got put away from a week ago.
Been relaxing, enjoying my now working laptop.
Getting some writing caught up. Speaking of that, I need to do a little blogging. I want to commit to a month long blogging challenge that starts today. The challenge for the day is to spend 20 minutes pouring out random things from my head. The twist… to actually publish it on the blog. I’ll be using my Retro Radio Blog on wordpress.com, not the podcast site. But their sort of connected via side bar RSS feeds being displayed. After the month? Who knows, hopefully I’ll continue it.
Passage: Ezra 7, Luke 18.
Theme: Attitudes of the Heart.
Who’s in it, and what’s happening:
Ezra 7. Ezra’s geneology is given. Notably, he descended from Phineas, that notable Levite who helped Moses to stop a plague among the people as they approached the promised land. The plague stemming from lustful behavior, after Balam’s encouraging the Midianite women to entice them.
He came to Jerusalem on a particular day that’s mentioned, and loved to study the law. He loved to practice it, and teach it.
A decree from the king was delivered by Ezra. It supported the activities in Jerusalem.
He was sending the Israelites back, at least those who wanted to go. Silver, gold, free will offerings to buy animals to sacrifice, and what’s left, use in temple service. Also the temple utensils were to return. The royal treasury is to supply needs of the project. The priests were authorized to collect tax, and were freed from paying tax.
Ezra was authorized to appoint judges, with a wide range of empowerement, and to judge over the lands in the region.
The king closing off with blessings, and well wishing of god.
Luke 18. Jesus teaches the disciples to pray diligently, by using a parable. A woman kept returning to the dishonest judge until she got satisfaction in his court. The point: though the judge is flawed, and not fearing god, he still gave the woman her day in court. With god being perfect, he’ll be even more right in his judgements. The question: Will there be any faithul found on earth when the son of man comes?
A parable for self righteous people. The pharissee who prayed silently, thankful he wasn’t like this tax collector, and gloating over the good deeds he did. Meanwhile the tax collector beat his breast, humbled, and asking for mercy. He walked away repentant and forgiven.
Disciples tried to keep babies from being brought, but Jesus called the children to him. The kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these. He said, if you don’t recieve the kingdom like a child, you won’t recieve it at all.
A ruler asked the good teacher how to be saved. Jesus responded that god alone is good. Then went on to list a few of the ten commandments. The man claimed to have kept these. Jesus nailed the thing the ruler really needed to address, sell all, and follow.
A parable comparrison. It’s easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than a rich man to get to heaven. However, what’s impossible for people is possible for god.
Actually paying attention, Peter claimed thzat he had left all to follow. Jesus agrees when he responds that nobody who has left all for the kingdom of god will go empty handed. You’ll recieve many more times this at this time, but most importzant, eternal life.
Note: Recieve it at this time?How many Christians die penniless? Did the disciples all get palaces, and wealth? Not in the sense that we usually think of it. Imagine the wealthy spiritual lives they all ended up with, and the many who benefited from it, even while being killed, or living their last days in poverty.
Jesus tells his disciples that they’re on the way to Jerusalem, and his final days are here. Killed, but he’ll rise again, but they didn’t understand.
A blind man healed. He called out, to the annoyance of all around, but Jesus called him over, and asked what he wanted. To be healed of course. So Jesus said he was healed, and the man had his sight. He followed Jesus, and the rest praised god.
Note how the parable earlier was about persistence? Returning and asking after being denied. The blind man was denied by the crowd, but his persistence got the attention of Jesus. It paid off.
Tuesday, April 7
Places To Go People To See
Robin has a lot of running around to do. A doctor appointment in Effingham, a visit to her mom’s, and as it turned out, a visit from the repairman for the satelite TV . I had bumped the dish the other day, and the signal quit coming in. I was pretty sure Robin had been watching it since then, but maybe not. I know it came on all by itself last Friday when the computer guy was here. Any how, it’s fixed now. Apparently it’s a common thing to bump it out of alignment. Doesn’t surprise me, knowing what I know about airport runway reflectors for MTI.
I had an early morning phone call from Fedora Outliers. Trying to get some in home training for Roger. Next phase, visit Roger, during business hours in the week.
, and call Mashon back to work out his exact needs. Can then also work out contacting Kevin Jacques to approve the remote training, and any equipment the assessmen
Been doing a writing challenge sponsored by WordPress.com. So far, so good, but today is only the 2nd day out of the next 4 weeks. Planning to get all the way through it.
Time for a Hines conference call this morning. The iPhone session.
Passage: Ezra 8, Luke 19.
Theme: Outfitting the Kingdom.
Who’s in it, and what’s happening:
Ezra 8. A role call of names, and the numbers imn their families Apparently men who went to Babylon with Ezra.
He then assembled them at the river, and camped for 3 days. When no Levites are found, some are sent for, and a list of names, numbers, and places is given.
Ezra fasted with the group at the river, ashamed to ask the king for any troops to protect them as they traveled. They relied on god to protect them, and he heard their
Money for offerings were given to the leaders of the band of Levites and priests. They were also entrusted to carry the temple utensils and artifacts back. The leaders were also proclaimed as holy.
They traveled, they were delivered from dangers, and they arrived in Jerusalem. The silver, gold, and utensils were presented at the temple.
Sacrifices were made, with all the numbers of animals added up. They also delivered the responces from the king to the secular leaders who challenged them earlier.
Luke 19. Zaccheus, the wee little man, gets the attention of Jesus. The tax collector invites Jesus home, and commits to give back to the poor, and fourfold to those he has cheated. Though people grumbled that he was going to the house of a sinner, Jesus claimed salvation had come, and he came to save the lost, not the found.
A parable on when the kingdom of heaven will appear. Some thought it would be immediately. Jesus told about the master who was on a long journey, and 3 servants entrusted with money. Two invested, and had returns to show for it, the third hid his coin, preserved, but without any added to it. The last servant faced the wrath of the master, had his coin taken, and the richer of the servants recieved the coin. Then the enemies of the master were called, and destroyed.
Note: The servant isn’t cast out, only that his one and only coin was taken. Still in, but no coin. He wasn’t included with the enemies who were to be destroyed. Also what does this have to do with when the kingdom will come? Don’t we start living in the kingdom at the point of salvation? Yes, but the envisioned kingdom these people thought of was the one where god rules, and heaven and earth unite. Sorry people, but that day simply won’t happen until the world as we know it ends, and the day of judgement is at hand. We can identify this time, because the enemies are dealt with.
Then, on to Jerusalem. Two disciples were sent ahead to get a donkey. The lord has need of it. They used their cloaks for a saddle, and the people layed palm branches in the street, and called out, “Hossanna, blessed is he who comes in the name of the lord.” The pharissees took offense, asking Jesus to make them be quiet. He said if they didn’t cheer, the stones would cry out.
Jesus wept and spoke a word of prophecy on Jerusalem when the city came into view. It didn’t recognize his visitation, and because of that the city would soon face hard times, be under siege, and be flattened.
Entering the temple, Jesus drives out the money changers. They made the fathers house of prayer, a den of thieves.
As he taught in the temple every day, the high priests sought ways to destroy him, but it would cause an uproar in the people.
Wednesday, April 8
Helping get things carried in, and put away that Robin brought back from her mom’s.
Chris and I did a little to scrape off the sidewalk blocks that lead to the parking on the south side of the building. Didn’t get too far.
Not sure what else to do. Recorded a podcast with Robin. Need to edit the journal that I recorded yesterday, and gotta get the quest installment on Job out. Also wouldn’t hurt to look at notes on the question of prayer being answered.
Still need to review my notes for the talk this weekend, and do the daily writing challenge.
Passage: Ezra 9, Luke 20.
Theme: Holy Priesthood.
Who’s in it, and what’s happening:
Ezra 9. At this point, Ezra had a problem brought to his attention. Only priests who met rigorous criteria could serve in the temple. Age restrictions, physical condition, and being ceremonialy pure in lifestyle. Noteably to be married to one wife, and a virgin who was also Jewish. In their dispersion in captivity, many had married foreign wives. Ezra grieved, and went to the temple.
In his humility, he prayed, was ashamed and embarrassed. Ezra confessed the sins of the people, recognizing them as the very ones that toppled the kings of the past, and put them in captivity. He recognized god’s grace and restoration in bringing the remnant back.
What should we do? We’ve failed? You’ve shown us mercy we didn’t deserve. you are righteous, and we come before you in our guilt.
Luke 20. one day in the temple, Jesus was confronted by the religious leaders to challenge what authority he did his miraculous deeds. Jesus answers with a question that both claims to have the same authorizzed power as John the Baptist, but being a question it gives an out to let the leaders back down gracefully.
A parable. A vineyard owner left his servants in charge while he left for a long journey. At harvest a servant was sent for some of the crop, but was beaten, and turned away. Next a second, a third servant, and finally his son, but he was beaten and killed. They thought by killing the son, they would retain a,ll the vineyards for themselves. Wouldn’t the master destroy them for the injustice and disrespect? The people could recognize this gross miscarriage of injustice, but still apparently didn’t get it.
Jesus gave this scripture reference with in the parable: `THE STONE WHICH THE BUILDERS REJECTED, THIS BECAME THE CHIEF CORNER stone´?
The pharisees understood, and tried to lay hands on him. Note: Trying to fulfill this parable that was just told them, despite understanding the gross injustice, the scripture reference, and knowing it was them who Jesus told about. Doesn’t seem too bright.
Fearing the people, they only set spies to watch his every move, trying to trap him.
Trying to trip him up, they asked Jesus about paying taxes. The answer, render to Caesar the things of Ceasar, and to god the things of god. It shut them up.
The noteworthy thing about Sadducees was they didn’t believe in an afterlife. The came with the situation of a woman having several husbands, marrying a brother after the death of her first husband, until they were all gone. Whose wife will she be in heaven?
The short answer: marriage is for this world, there is bno marriage in heaven. Note: think about it. Marriage is to recreate life, and carry on a legacy beyond our days. If you live forever in heaven, the need to regenerate life isn’t necessary.
The continued answer to prove to these nonbelievers in afterlife, Jesus refers to the burning bush experience of Moses. He calls god the god of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. God is said to be the god of the living, therefore these men are alive, in an after life resurrection. The scribes backed down saying, Good answer.
Jesus went on the offensive with more scripture. He asked how the Messiah could be David’s son, yet David recognized him as lord.
To his disciples, Jesus warned not to desire the religious trappings like the scribes do. The robes, the respect, and the best seats in the house, yet devour widows.
Thursday, April 9
Getting Caught Up… Or Behind
Got up this morning and the sump pump was acting wierd. It ran then stopped in short cycles. As if the float was hovering at a threshold. Robin put some detergent into the sump hole, and the more the day goes on, the more normal the pump sounds. and the cycles are close to normal again. Triumph.
Chris went to his doctor appointment, and due to the same long process he had before, he’ll be gone the rest of the afternoon.
I needed to get some HPN stuff posted, but there’s been nothing but delays. Files didn’t seem to upload, restarted the ftp.
Had to edit the alive show. Done,. And get it uploaded. Done.
Time is racing past. More jobs popping up, what els can go on to add to the things that keep needing attention, and not getting done? Sigh.
Passage: Ezra 10, Luke 21.
Theme: Redemption Drawing Near.
Who’s in it, and what’s happening:
Ezra 10. As Ezra was praying, and repenting, and confessing the sins of the nation, men, women, and children ccame to him. It involved the problem of the priests who married women from other nations. Something that made them impure, and unfit for temple service. This was the people from other tribes wanting to also be pure. Ezra called for them to be brave, and do the right thing.
A proclamation and oath was made that all the exiles should return to Jerusalem. If they didn’t show up, they would forfiet claim to their inherited lands and cities.
It was for the tribes of Judah and Benjamin, and the exiles came. The agreed, and wept, but there were too many to put away their wives, and become ceremonially clean. Ezra said it would be done in stages to get everybody processed. It was their duty, and they obeyed.
An investigation to see who all married foreign wives was made. The tribal leaders did their parts in it.
A role call of Levite families witgh people who married foreigners is listed
Luke 21. Jesus points out the widow puttin her two coins in the treasury, and claims she put in more than all by putting in all she had.
Note: It doesn’t specify here, but elsewhere we find some disciples admiring the temple. Jesus foretells that the building will be torn apart one day.
When will that happen? Jesus warns to not believe everybody you hear. Wars and rumors of wars.
Nation against nation. Plagues and famine. Terrors and signs from heaven.
Persecution, imprisonment, and testifying before rulers. Wisdom of what to say will be given. Betrayal from family. Your endurance will gain your lives.
When Jerusalem is surrounded… run for the hills. Days of desolation and destruction are coming. Distress, captivity, and trampled.
Signs in the sun, moon, and stars. Dismay, perplexity. The powers of the heavens shaken, then the return of the son of man. Redemption is drawing near.
A parable. As sure as the signs that a fig tree is going to bloom, so are the signs of the end times. Heaven and earth will pass away, but his words will not.
Be on guard, don’t be drunkor weighed down by life worries, be on guard. Pray for strength to escape,
Jesus would teach in the temple by day, and pray on the mount at night.
Friday, April 10
Took some time to go with Robin to take Chris home, and run a few errands. Had lunch out.
Got home and reviewed notes on doing the talk at the breakfast tomorrow.
Been having some fun with the writing challenge this week. Today’s was to be brief. Lucky me. My schedule meant that all I had was a few moments. I was totally floored when the short piece got me the most likes and follows to the blog… ever. 10 each so far.
Passage: Luke 22, Psalm 88.
Theme: Cry for Salvation from Abandonmwent.
Who’s in it, and what’s going on:
Luke 22. The passover approached, and the religious leaders sought to kill Jesus. Judas just didn’t betray Jesus, it says that Satan entered into him.
Meanwhuile, Jesus tells the disciples how to arrange for the upper room. They followed the man with the water jar, and found the furnished room.
In the room, Jesus makes it clear this would be his last passover. He also warns about the betrayal, and that person was in their midst. It had to be done, but woe to the one doing it. In other wordds, a curse on him, the opposite of blessing.
A dispute about who was greatest broke out. Jesus then told about being great meant to be servant of all.
They were assured that their place in the kingdom would be in judging over the twelve tribes.
Jesus calls out Simon to warn him of his ordeal at the hand of Satan.
Before the disciples went out without extra p0rovisions to heal and cast out demons. Now Jesus told them it was time to go out, and take provisions. Take money, and a sword.
Later, on the mount, Jesus told the disciples to pray that they won’t enter temptation. Jesus prayed that if possible, this cup should be taken from him. He was ministered to by an angel, yet his stress still caused sweatdrops of blood. He returned to waken the disciples to warn them to pray to not fall into temptation. Apparently sleeping wasn’t that temptation. What was then? Peter’s denial? Each with their own temptations?
At that time Judas returned, a servant was struck, and his ear healed. Jesus remarks about being taken by force in the dark, rather than in the day in the temple.
At the high priests house, Peter denies Jesus. At the moment of the final denial, he made eye contact with Jesus, was ashamed, and ran away.
Inside, Jesus was beaten and blasphemed.
At day break, Jesus went for more questioning. They asked him openly if he was the Messiah, but Jesus answered, ‘even if I tell you, you won’t believe.’ What about the son of god then? Jesus admitted to that, and they claimed it was all the testimony they needed. To kill him, of course, not to honor him.
Psalms 88. God of salvation, I need you. I’m in trouble, and near to the grave. Forsaken and cut off. Abandoned. Your wrath is on me, I’m afflicted. My friends have fled.
Will the dead praise you? Will your lovingkindness or faithfulness be declared in the grave?
I’m crying out to you. Why do you reject me, and hide your face? I’m terrified and overcome. No love, no friend.
Saturday, April 11
Actually the day of the breakfast talk. Somehow I lost the entry for today.
The breakfast went well, and the talk was pretty well recievved. Took a recording of it for posterity. Will have to use in the podcast sometime.
Passage: Psalm 22, Luke 23
Who’s in it, and what’s happening:
Psalms 22. My God, my God, why have You forsaken me? Day and night I cry for salvation. Our fathers trusted, and were delivered.
I’m a worm and not a man. Hated, sneered at, taunted.
From birth I’ve trusted you.
Trouble is near bulls surround me. I’m poured out, my bones out of joint, and strength dried up. Evil ones pierce my hands and feet, casting lots for my clothes.
Help me, deliver me, save me.
I will tell of your name praise him. Glorify him.
The afflicted will eat, and be satisfied. All the families will worship.
Luke 23. Jesus is taken to Pilate, accused of tax evation, and of being a king.
Being from Galillee, Pilate sent him to Herod. Herod was glad to see Jesus, expecting to be entertainened.
Back to Pilate, no fault is found. He’ll punish and release him.
The crowd called for Barabus.
Simon of Cyrene is drawn on to carry the cross. Crowds and women follow him at a distance. Jesus told them to weep for themselves. A day is coming where they would ask the mountains to fall on them.
Two thieves were also cruu
Between the thieves, Jesus asked god to forgive them, they don’t know what they’re doing.
One criminal jeered, but the other asked to be in paradise.
At hour 6 to 9, darkness was on the land. Jesus breathes his last, and the centurian recognizes him as the son of god.
Joseph of Aramethia asks for the body of Jesus Women watched to know where the tomb was. After the sabbath was observefd, they would return to finish preparing the bofdy.